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Drangae

(106 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) | Duchesne-Guillemin, Jacques (Liege)
[German version] Eastern Iranian people (Σαράγγαι, Sarángai, in Hdt. 3,93) on the lower course of the  Etymander (the modern Hilmand/Helmand Rūd); the country itself was called  Drangiana, and that seems in any case to be the Medio-Persian form. Together with some tribes of the central desert and Carmania, the Sarangae appear in Herodotus as linked to a tax district, on the southern side of the Parthians and Hyrcanians. In the army of Xerxes the Sarangai bore Median weaponry (Hdt. 7,67,1). A legendary cycle is bound up with the hero-names Keršāsp and Rōstam. Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) Du…

Armavira

(85 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin)
[German version] (Ἀρμαουίρα; Armaouíra). City mentioned in Ptol. 5.12.5 M. and 8.19.11 N. on the left bank of the Aras, the Urartian Argistichinili. Castle and residence on the crest of a mountain, the city below it on the slope leading down to the River A.; first capital of the Armenian kingdom. Excavations have revealed Urartian material, as well as ancient Armenian strata, including a gold medallion picturing the goddess  Anahita (?). Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) Bibliography A. A. Martirosjan, Argistichinili I, Archeologiceskie Pamjatniki Armenii 8, 1974.

Nautaca

(68 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Graeco-Bactria | Graeco-Bactria (τὰ Ναύτακα; tà Naútaka). According to Arr. Anab. 3,28,9; 4,18,1; Curt. 8,2,1 ( Nauta), a settlement or region in Sogdiana. Possibly a venue for chariot-racing. Not located. Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) Bibliography J. Sturm, s.v. N., RE 16, 2033  R. Hauschild, Tirade der Wagenrennfahrt des Königs Haosravah und Junkers Neresmanah, in: MIO 7,1, 1959, 1-78.

Cirik-Rabat-Kala

(72 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin)
[German version] Oval city site east of Lake Aral (800 × 600 m), with a citadel and six funerary buildings of the 4th-2nd cents. BC. Interpreted as the capital city of the  Apasiaci, abandoned in the late 2nd cent. BC. In the 3rd (?) cent. AD a rectangular fortification of the Khorezm state was built on the city site. Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) Bibliography S. P. Tolstov, Po drevnim del'tam Oksa i Jaksarta, 1962.

Araxes

(156 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) | Treidler, Hans (Berlin)
(Ἀράξης; Aráxēs). [German version] [1] Largest river in Armenia Largest river in Armenia (today known as the Aras, Georgian Rakhsî), flows into the Caspian Sea; its full extent was not known until Roman times (Pompey) (Mela 3,40; Plin. HN 6,26; Ptol. 5,12,3 M. i.a.). Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) Treidler, Hans (Berlin) [German version] [2] Another name for the Oxus According to Hdt. 1,202, another name for the Oxus (today Amu-darja), a western tributary of which (today: Wadi Usboi) reached as far as the Caspian Sea in Neolithic times. Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) Treidler, Hans (Berlin) …

Caucasiae Pylae

(44 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) | Treidler, Hans (Berlin)
[German version] (Καυκάσιαι Πύλαι; Kaukásiai Pýlai). Pass in the  Caucasus, only mentioned in Plin. HN 6,30; the same as what is now the Georgian military road, described in Ptol. 5,8,9 as Σαρματικαὶ Πύλαι ( Sarmatikaì Pýlai). Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) Treidler, Hans (Berlin)

Taochi

(74 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin)
[German version] (Τάοχοι, cf. Xen. An. 4,4,18 et passim; according to Sophaenetus FGrH 109 F 2 also Τάοι/ Táoi). Mountain people in northern Armenia, who maintained several fortified places with stores of foodstuffs in the valley of the Glaucus (tributary of the modern Çoruh Nehri). The T. were not directly dependent on the Great King, but occasionally served in the Persian army as mercenaries. Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) Bibliography A. Herrmann, s. v. T., RE 4 A, 2247.

Balkh

(116 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) | Treidler, Hans (Berlin)
[German version] (Βάκτρα; Báktra). Commercial and residential town at the intersection of two caravan routes in north Afghanistan. Originally Ζαρίασπα ( Zaríaspa; Arr. 3,1,5,71; Pol. 10,49) or Zariastes (Plin. HN 6,48). Today densely populated and, therefore, only excavations at the edge of the tell.  Antiochus III besieged  Euthydemus in vain in 206 BC; the latter built up the Graeco-Bactrian empire from here ( Bactria). In 1966, a hoard find brought forth more than 170 Greek coins from the period before 380 BC. Inhabited and fortified until today. Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) Trei…

Iaxartes

(144 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) | Treidler, Hans (Berlin)
[German version] River in western Central Asia, modern Syr Darya, 2,860 km long; rises at the Taedyk pass in the eastern Altai Mountains. After flowing northwards for a short distance it takes in the Naryn River, which originates not far from Lake Issyk-Kul, then enters the plains of Kazakhstan south-west of Tashkent (where it becomes navigable) and flows into the  Aral Sea (Amm. Marc. 23,6,59). The indigenous Scythians called the I. Silis or Orxantes, Alexander the Great called it Tanais (Plin. HN 6,49; Arr. Anab. 3,30-7-8 et passim, but also I. Arr. Anab. 7,16,3 among others), …

Albania

(175 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) | Oelsner, Joachim (Leipzig)
[German version] [1] Caucasian landscape Caucasian landscape on the middle to lower  Cyrus (Kura) (Str. 11,4; Ptol. 5,11). The main city was Cabavla (Plin. HN 6,29 Cabalaca, Mount Kalak's name today is a reminder). The Ἀλβάνιαι πύλαι ( Albániai pýlai; Ptol. 5,9,15; 12,6) are presumably identical to the eastern Caucasian pass of Khacmȃz. Cabala and other cities in Albania have been excavated. A rock inscription on the Kobystan Cliff of the Caspian Sea verifies the advance of Domitian's XII legion (around AD 80). Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) Bibliography L. Bretanizki, B. Weimarn, B.…

Bactria

(970 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) | Treidler, Hans (Berlin)
[German version] A. Sources Herodotus was the first to write about ancient B., and he was closest to the events he describes; all further tradition is secondary, mainly also the information relating to the epoch of  Alexander [4] the Great by Arrian (A.) and Curtius Rufus, who refer back to Aristobulus, Ptolemy and Cleitarchus. Strabo (11,11) and Ptolemy (6,11 N) give coherent representations of B. and, in addition, there are scattered accounts by  Aelianus [2], Aeschylus, Aristotle, Diodorus Sicul…

Chorezmia

(286 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin)
[German version] (Χορασμίη; Chorasmíē, Arabic Ḫwārizm). River-valley oasis on the lower Āmū-daryā. Settled by farmers since the 5th-4th millennia BC. In the Avesta ( Avesta script) as xwarizm; mentioned in the  Bisutun inscription. The Chorezmians together with the Aryans formed a satrapy (Hdt. III,93,173 Hecat. fr.). Abū Raiḥān al-Bı̄rūnī gives the year 980 before the era of Alexander (1292 BC) as the beginning of the Chorezmian era. When in 329/328 Alexander wintered in  Maracanda he was visited by  Pharasmanes, king o…

Pendzhikent

(143 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin)
[German version] (ancient name and date of foundation unknown). Sogdian city of Pantcakat on the Serafsan, northern Tadjikistan; trading and artisan centre with gold extraction. A citadel, the inner city with two temples, suburbs and a necropolis are preserved. Wall paintings with local, Indian and Graeco-Roman motifs were found in temples and private houses, e.g. the fable by Aesop of the goose that laid the golden eggs. In addition, bracteates with the Roman she-wolf based on Byzantine coins wer…

Hypanis

(142 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) | Treidler, Hans (Berlin)
(Ὕπανις; Hýpanis). [German version] [1] River in the Ukraine River in the Ukraine (modern Bug). According to Hdt. 4,47,52 it flows from west to east, next to  Ister (Danube) and  Tyras (Dniestr) the third of the Scythian rivers that flows to the Pontus. Further sources: Hdt. 4,17,18; Skymni periegesis V. 804 (= GGM 1,229); Str. 2,107; 7, 298; 306; Ptol. 3,5,2; Anonymi periplus Ponti Euxini 60 (= GGM 1,417); Steph. Byz. s.v.  Borysthenes; Mela 2,6; Plin. HN 4,83f. Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) Treidler, Hans (Berlin) [German version] [2] River in the northern Caucasus Modern Kuban, which …

Arabs

(381 words)

Author(s): Pahlitzsch, Johannes (Berlin) | Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin)
[German version] Today the largest group of people speaking a Semitic language. Aribi has been the name of the inhabitants of the Arabic steppe and Mat Arabi of the ‘steppe region’ since the Assyrian period (9th cent. BC). The A. were first mentioned as camel riders on the monolith of Shalmanasar II (859-825 BC). The Aribi were subject to kings and also ruling queens. In the Assyrian-Babylonian period the name referred to the Bedouins of northern Arabia. Since the Koran the term ‘Arabic’ has come to be univ…

Cyrtii

(84 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin)
[German version] (Κύρτιοι; Kýrtioi, Lat. Cyrtii). Mentioned at Str. 11,523; 727 as nomads in northern Media and Persia. Pol. 5,52,5 mentions the C. as reserve troops of the Median governor Molon in the struggle against Antiochus III. Liv. 37,40,9 mentions them as opponents of the Romans in the battle of Magnesia (190 BC); at Liv. 42,58,13 they appear as Roman mercenaries with Callinicus (171 BC). On the basis of their name, they are seen as the ancestors of the Kurds. Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin)

Acadra

(73 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin)
[German version] [1] Coastal area of Indo-China A coastal area of Indo-China mentioned by Ptol. 7,2,6. Excavations in Arikamedu indicate that this region enjoyed trade with Rome during the 1st cent. AD. Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) [German version] [2] City of southern China City of southern China recorded only by Ptol. 7,3,5, possibly associated with the πόλις Ἀσπίθρα ( pólis Aspíthra) and the Psitharas river mentioned by Plin. HN 6,35. Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin)

Arsamosata

(87 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) | Treidler, Hans (Berlin)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Byzantium | Hellenistic states | Hellenistic states | Limes Often mentioned stronghold in Armenia, mentioned by Pol. 8 .23 for the year 189 BC, located by Plin. HN 6.26 ( Arsamosata Euphrati proximum) and mentioned by Tac. Ann. 15.10 for the year AD 62. In Ptol. 5.12.8: Ἀρσαμόσατα ( Arsamósata). Either identical to Erzurum (upper western Euphrates) or situated south of the eastern Euphrates between the latter and the Tigris. Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) Treidler, Hans (Berlin)

Silk Road

(608 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin)
[German version] Collective term for the caravan routes from China to western Asia. Used for general trade and interchange, the Silk Road acquired particular significance by bringing silk fabrics into the Mediterranean, where it was highly prized, particularly in Rome (silk had been known there since the 1st cent. BC; for evidence see Seres). It is not known when the use of these trade routes began - it presumably goes back to the 4th millennium BC; it is documented until the 16th cent. AD. Today'…

Bishapur

(220 words)

Author(s): Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin)
[German version] This item can be found on the following maps: Sassanids ‘The fair (city) of Shapur’, rectangular seat of residence of Shapur I (241-272,  Sapor), in south-west Iran. Constructed by Roman prisoners of war after Shapur's victories over Gordianus, Philippus Arabs and Valerians, consequently using Roman stonemasonry techniques (clamping hewn stones with iron ‘swallowtails’). I.a., a temple of  Anahita has been excavated, a square hall with an outer corridor on each side. The central, domed hall (22 × 22 m, c. 25 m high) of the quarry-stone palace was extended …
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