Strabo, Geography

LCL 50: 12-13

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ἀφορίζων, ἣν Κελτικοὶ νέμονται τὸ πλέον, καὶ τῶν Λυσιτανῶν τινες ἐκ τῆς περαίας τοῦ Τάγου μετοικισθέντες ὑπὸ Ῥωμαίων· ἐν δὲ τοῖς ἄνω μέρεσι καὶ Καρπητανοὶ καὶ Ὠρητανοὶ καὶ Οὐεττώνων συχνοὶ νέμονται. αὕτη μὲν οὖν ἡ χώρα μετρίως ἐστὶν εὐδαίμων, ἡ δ᾿ ἐφεξῆς πρὸς ἕω κειμένη καὶ νότον ὑπερβολὴν οὐκ ἀπολείπει πρὸς ἅπασαν κρινομένη τὴν οἰκουμένην ἀρετῆς χάριν καὶ τῶν ἐκ γῆς καὶ θαλάττης ἀγαθῶν. αὕτη δ᾿ ἐστίν ἣν ὁ Βαῖτις διαρρεῖ ποταμός, ἀπὸ τῶν αὐτῶν μερῶν τὴν ἀρχὴν ἔχων ἀφ᾿ ὧνπερ καὶ ὁ Ἄνας καὶ ὁ Τάγος, μέσος πως ἀμφοῖν τούτων ὑπάρχων κατὰ μέγεθος· παραπλησίως μέντοι τῷ Ἄνᾳ κατ᾿ ἀρχὰς ἐπὶ τὴν ἑσπέραν ῥυεὶς εἶτ᾿ ἐπιστρέφει πρὸς νότον καὶ κατὰ τὴν αὐτὴν ἐκδίδωσι τούτῳ παραλίαν. καλοῦσι δ᾿ ἀπὸ μὲν τοῦ ποταμοῦ Βαιτικήν, ἀπὸ δὲ τῶν ἐνοικούντων Τουρδητανίαν· τοὺς δ᾿ ἐνοικοῦντας Τουρδητανούς τε καὶ Τουρδούλους προσαγορεύουσιν, οἱ μὲν τοὺς αὐτοὺς νομίζοντες, οἱ δ᾿ ἑτέρους· ὧν ἐστι καὶ Πολύβιος, συνοίκους φήσας τοῖς Τουρδητανοῖς πρὸς ἄρκτον τοὺς Τουρδούλους· νυνὶ δ᾿ ἐν αὐτοῖς οὐδεὶς φαίνεται διορισμός. σοφώτατοι δ᾿ ἐξετάζονται τῶν Ἰβήρων οὗτοι, καὶ γραμματικῇ χρῶνται, καὶ τῆς παλαιᾶς μνήμης ἔχουσι συγγράμματα καὶ ποιήματα καὶ νόμους ἐμμέτρους ἑξακισχιλίων ἐτῶν,1 ὥς φασι· καὶ οἱ ἄλλοι δ᾿ Ἴβηρες χρῶνται γραμματικῇ, οὐ μιᾷ δ᾿ ἰδέᾳ, οὐδὲ γὰρ γλώττῃ μιᾷ. τείνει δὲ ἡ χώρα αὕτη, ἡ ἐντὸς τοῦ Ἄνα, πρὸς ἕω


Geography Book III

by Celtic peoples, and by certain of the Lusitanians who were transplanted thither by the Romans from the other side of the Tagus. But in the regions farther inland dwell Carpetanians, Oretanians, and large numbers of Vettonians. This country, to be sure, has only a moderately happy lot, but that which lies next to it on the east and south takes pre-eminence in comparison with the entire inhabited world in respect of fertility and of the goodly products of land and sea. This is the country through which the Baetis flows, which rises in the same districts as both the Anas and the Tagus, and in size is about midway between the other two rivers. Like the Anas, however, it at first flows towards the west, and then turns south, and empties on the same coast as the Anas. They call the country Baetica after the river, and also Turdetania after the inhabitants; yet they call the inhabitants both Turdetanians and Turdulians, some believing that they are the same people, others that they are different. Among the latter is Polybius, for he states that the Turdulians are neighbours of the Turdetanians on the north; but at the present time there is no distinction to be seen among them. The Turdetanians are ranked as the wisest of the Iberians; and they make use of an alphabet, and possess records of their ancient history, poems, and laws written in verse that are six thousand years old,1 as they assert. And also the other Iberians use an alphabet, though not letters of one and the same character, for their speech is not one and the same, either. Now Turdetania, the country this side the

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.strabo-geography.1917