Tools

Diodorus of Sicily

ὀρνέων ἢ τετραπόδων ζῴων ἐκτετυπωμέναι προτομαί. 3σάλπιγγας δ᾿ ἔχουσιν ἰδιοφυεῖς καὶ βαρβαρικάς· ἐμφυσῶσι γὰρ ταύταις καὶ προβάλλουσιν ἦχον τραχὺν καὶ πολεμικῆς ταραχῆς οἰκεῖον. θώρακας δ᾿ ἔχουσιν οἱ μὲν σιδηροῦς ἁλυσιδωτούς, οἱ δὲ τοῖς ὑπὸ τῆς φύσεως δεδομένοις ἀρκοῦνται, γυμνοὶ μαχόμενοι. ἀντὶ δὲ τοῦ ξίφους σπάθας ἔχουσι μακρὰς σιδηραῖς ἢ χαλκαῖς ἁλύσεσιν ἐξηρτημένας, παρὰ τὴν δεξιὰν λαγόνα παρατεταμένας. τινὲς δὲ τοὺς χιτῶνας ἐπιχρύσοις ἢ καταργύροις 4ζωστῆρσι συνέζωνται. προβάλλονται δὲ λόγχας, ἃς ἐκεῖνοι λαγκίας καλοῦσι, πηχυαῖα1 τῷ μήκει τοῦ σιδήρου καὶ ἔτι μείζω τὰ ἐπιθήματα ἐχούσας, πλάτει δὲ βραχὺ λείποντα διπαλαίστων· τὰ μὲν γὰρ ξίφη τῶν παρ᾿ ἑτέροις σαυνίων εἰσὶν οὐκ ἐλάττω, τὰ δὲ σαυνία τὰς ἀκμὰς ἔχει τῶν ξιφῶν μείζους. τούτων δὲ τὰ μὲν ἐπ᾿ εὐθείας κεχάλκευται, τὰ δ᾿ ἑλικοειδῆ δι᾿ ὅλων ἀνάκλασιν ἔχει πρὸς τὸ καὶ κατὰ τὴν πληγὴν μὴ μόνον τέμνειν, ἀλλὰ καὶ θραύειν τὰς σάρκας καὶ κατὰ τὴν ἀνακομιδὴν τοῦ δόρατος σπαράττειν τὸ τραῦμα.

31. Αὐτοὶ δ᾿ εἰσὶ τὴν πρόσοψιν καταπληκτικοὶ καὶ ταῖς φωναῖς βαρυηχεῖς καὶ παντελῶς τραχύφωνοι, κατὰ δὲ τὰς ὁμιλίας βραχυλόγοι καὶ αἰνιγματίαι καὶ τὰ πολλὰ αἰνιττόμενοι συνεκδοχικῶς·2 πολλὰ δὲ λέγοντες ἐν ὑπερβολαῖς ἐπ᾿ αὐξήσει μὲν ἑαυτῶν, μειώσει δὲ τῶν ἄλλων, ἀπειληταί τε καὶ ἀνατατικοὶ καὶ τετραγῳδημένοι ὑπάρχουσι, ταῖς δὲ διανοίαις ὀξεῖς καὶ πρὸς μάθησιν οὐκ ἀφυεῖς.

176

Book V

fore-parts of birds or four-footed animals. Their trumpets are of peculiar nature and such as barbarians use, for when they are blown upon they give forth a harsh sound, appropriate to the tumult of war. Some of them have iron cuirasses, chain-wrought, but others are satisfied with the armour which Nature has given them and go into battle naked. In place of the short sword they carry long broadswords which are hung on chains of iron or bronze and are worn along the right flank. And some of them gather up their shirts with belts plated with gold or silver. The spears they brandish, which they call lanciae, have iron heads a cubit in length and even more, and a little under two palms in breadth; for their swords are not shorter than the javelins of other peoples, and the heads of their javelins are larger than the swords of others. Some of these javelins come from the forge straight, others twist in and out in spiral shapes for their entire length, the purpose being that the thrust may not only cut the flesh, but mangle it as well, and that the withdrawal of the spear may lacerate the wound.

31. The Gauls are terrifying in aspect and their voices are deep and altogether harsh; when they meet together they converse with few words and in riddles, hinting darkly at things for the most part and using one word when they mean another; and they like to talk in superlatives, to the end that they may extol themselves and depreciate all other men. They are also boasters and threateners and are fond of pompous language, and yet they have sharp wits and are not without cleverness at learning. Among

177
DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.diodorus_siculus-library_history.1933