Polybius, The Histories

LCL 137: 130-131

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The Histories Of Polybius

τὴν πορείαν ἀπὸ τῆς διαβάσεως ἧκε πρὸς τὴν καλουμένην Νῆσον, χώραν πολύοχλον καὶ σιτοφόρον, ἔχουσαν δὲ τὴν προσηγορίαν ἀπ᾿ αὐτοῦ τοῦ συμπτώματος. 6ᾗ μὲν γὰρ ὁ Ῥοδανός, ᾗ δ᾿ Ἰσάρας προσαγορευόμενος, ῥέοντες παρ᾿ ἑκατέραν τὴν πλευράν, ἀποκορυφοῦσιν αὐτῆς τὸ σχῆμα κατὰ τὴν πρὸς ἀλλήλους 7σύμπτωσιν. ἔστι δὲ παραπλησία τῷ μεγέθει καὶ τῷ σχήματι τῷ κατ᾿ Αἴγυπτον καλουμένῳ Δέλτα, πλὴν ἐκείνου μὲν θάλαττα τὴν μίαν πλευρὰν καὶ τὰς τῶν ποταμῶν ῥύσεις ἐπιζεύγνυσι, ταύτης δ᾿ ὄρη δυσπρόσοδα καὶ δυσέμβολα καὶ σχεδὸν ὡς εἰπεῖν ἀπρόσιτα. 8πρὸς ἣν ἀφικόμενος, καὶ καταλαβὼν ἐν αὐτῇ δύ᾿ ἀδελφοὺς ὑπὲρ τῆς βασιλείας στασιάζοντας καὶ μετὰ 9στρατοπέδων ἀντικαθημένους ἀλλήλοις, ἐπισπωμένου τοῦ πρεσβυτέρου καὶ παρακαλοῦντος εἰς τὸ συμπρᾶξαι καὶ συμπεριποιῆσαι τὴν ἀρχήν, [αὐτῷ] ὑπήκουσε, προδήλου σχεδὸν ὑπαρχούσης τῆς πρὸς τὸ 10παρὸν ἐσομένης αὐτῷ χρείας. διὸ καὶ συνεπιθέμενος καὶ συνεκβαλὼν τὸν ἕτερον πολλῆς ἐπικουρίας ἔτυχε 11παρὰ τοῦ κρατήσαντος· οὐ γὰρ μόνον σίτῳ καὶ τοῖς ἄλλοις ἐπιτηδείοις ἀφθόνως ἐχορήγησε τὸ στρατόπεδον, ἀλλὰ καὶ τῶν ὅπλων τὰ παλαιὰ καὶ τὰ πεπονηκότα πάντα διαλλάξας ἐκαινοποίησε πᾶσαν τὴν δύναμιν 12εὐκαίρως, ἔτι δὲ τοὺς πλείστους ἐσθῆτι καὶ πρὸς τούτοις ὑποδέσει κοσμήσας μεγάλην εὐχρηστίαν 13παρέσχετο πρὸς τὰς τῶν ὀρῶν ὑπερβολάς. τὸ δὲ μέγιστον, εὐλαβῶς διακειμένοις πρὸς τὴν διὰ τῶν Ἀλλοβρίγων καλουμένων Γαλατῶν πορείαν ἀπουραγήσας


Book III

for four days,89 reached a place called the “Island,” a populous district producing abundance of corn and deriving its name from its situation; for the Rhone and Isère90 running along each side of it meet at its point. It is similar in size and shape to the Egyptian Delta; only in that case the sea forms the base line uniting the two branches of the Nile, while here the base line is formed by a range of mountains difficult to climb or penetrate, and, one may say, almost inaccessible. On arriving there he found two brothers disputing the crown and posted over against each other with their armies, and on the elder one making overtures to him and begging him to assist in establishing him on the throne, he consented, it being almost a matter of certainty that under present circumstances this would be of great service to him. Having united with him therefore to attack and expel the other, he derived great assistance from the victor; for not only did he furnish the army with plenty of corn and other provisions but he replaced all their old and worn weapons by new ones, thus freshening up the whole force very opportunely. He also supplied most of them with warm clothing and footwear, things of the greatest possible service to them in crossing the mountains. But the most important of all was, that the Carthaginians being not at all easy on the subject of their passage through the

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.polybius-histories.2010