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Diodoros Siculus, Libray of History 4.19

Heracles, then, delivered over the kingdom of the Iberians to the noblest men among the natives and, on his part, took his army and passing into Celtica and traversing the length and breadth of it he put an end to the lawlessness and murdering of strangers to which the people had become addicted; and since a great multitude of men from every tribe flocked to his army of their own accord, he founded a great city which was named Alesia after the “wandering” (alê) on his campaign. But he also mingled among the citizens of the city many natives, and since these surpassed the others in multitude, it came to pass that the inhabitants as a whole were barbarized. The Celts up to the present time hold this city in honour, looking upon it as the hearth and mother-city of all Celtica. And for the entire period from the days of Heracles this city remained free and was never sacked until our own time; but at last Gaius Caesar, who has been pronounced a god because of the magnitude of his deeds, took it by storm and made it and the other Celts subjects of the Romans. Heracles then made his way from Celtica to Italy. Greek Text

Aischylos, Prometheus Lyomenos fr 199R – Tragicorum Graecorum Fragmenta 3, pp. 315-17, ed. S. L. Radt. Göttingen 1985.

Strabo, Geography 4.1.7

Æschylus having, however, learnt of the difficulty of accounting for it, or having been so informed by another, has explained it away as a myth. He makes Prometheus utter the following, whilst directing Hercules the road from the Caucasus to the Hesperides: “‘There you will come to the undaunted army of the Ligurians, where, resistless though you be, sure am I you will not worst them in battle; for it is fated that there your darts shall fail you; nor will you be able to take up a stone from the ground, since the country consists of soft mould; but Jupiter, beholding your distress, will compassionate you, and overshadowing the earth with a cloud, he will cause it to hail round stones, which you hurling against the Ligurian army, will soon put them to flight! Greek Text

Dionysios of Halikarnassos, Roman Antiquities 1.41

Greek Text and English Translation

Hyginus, De Astronomia 2.6.5

But Aeschylus, in the play entitled Prometheus Lyomenos, says that he is Hercules, fighting not with the dragon, but with the Ligurians. For he says that at the time Hercules was driving away the cattle of Geryon, he journeyed through the territory of the Ligurians. They joined forces in trying to take the herd from him, and pierced many of the beasts [?] with arrows. But after Hercules’ weapons failed, worn out by the number of the barbarians and lack of arms, he fell to his knees, already suffering from many wounds. Jove, however, out of pity for his son, provided that there should be a great supply of stones around him. With these Hercules defended himself and put the enemy to flight. And so Jove put he image of his fighting form among the constellations. Latin Text

ApB 2.5.10 – Apollodoros, Bibliotheke (Library)

And passing through Abderia he came to Liguria, where Ialebion and Dercynus, sons of Poseidon, attempted to rob him of the kine, but he killed them and went on his way through Tyrrhenia. Greek Text

Dionysios of Halikarnassos, Roman Antiquities 1.35.2-3

Greek Text and English Translation

Hellenikos 4F111 – Die Fragmente der griechischen Historiker 1, pp. 134-35, ed. F. Jacoby, 2d ed. Leiden 1957.

Greek Text

Diodoros Siculus, Library of History 4.21.1-4

After Heracles had passed through the lands of the Ligurians and of the Tyrrhenians he came to the river Tiber and pitched his camp at the site where Rome now stands. But this city was founded many generations afterwards by Romulus, the son of Ares, and at this time certain people of the vicinity had their homes on the Palatine Hill, as it is now called, and formed an altogether inconsiderable city. Here some of the notable men, among them Cacius and Pinarius, welcomed Heracles with marked acts of hospitality and honoured him with pleasing gifts; and memorials of these men abide in Rome to the present day. For, of the nobles of our time, the gens which bears the name Pinarii still exists among the Romans, being regarded as very ancient, and as for Cacius, there is a passage on the Palatine which leads downward, furnished with a stairway of stone, and is called after him the “Steps of Cacius,” and it lies near the original house of Cacius. Now Heracles received with favour the good-will shown him by the dwellers on the Palatine and foretold to them that, after he had passed into the circle of the gods, it would come to pass that whatever men should make a vow to dedicate to Heracles a tithe of their goods would lead a more happy and prosperous life. And in fact this custom did arise in later times and has persisted to our own day; for many Romans, and not only those of moderate fortunes but some even of great wealth, who have taken a vow to dedicate a tenth to Heracles and have thereafter become happy and prosperous, have presented him with a tenth of their possessions, which came to four thousand talents. Lucullus, for instance, who was perhaps the wealthiest Roman of his day, had his estate appraised and then offered a full tenth of it to the god, thus providing continuous feastings and expensive ones withal. Furthermore, the Romans have built to this god a notable temple on the bank of the Tiber, with the purpose of performing in it the sacrifices from the proceeds of the tithe. Greek Text

Dionysios of Halikarnassos, Roman Antiquities 1.39

Greek Text and English translation

Vergil, Aeneid 8.190-272

yon huge rock, beetling from the mountain wall,
hung from the cliff above. How lone and bare
the hollowed mountain looks! How crag on crag
tumbled and tossed in huge confusion lie!
A cavern once it was, which ran deep down
into the darkness. There th’ half-human shape
of Cacus made its hideous den, concealed
from sunlight and the day. The ground was wet
at all times with fresh gore; the portal grim
was hung about with heads of slaughtered men,
bloody and pale—a fearsome sight to see.
Vulcan begat this monster, which spewed forth
dark-fuming flames from his infernal throat,
and vast his stature seemed. But time and tide
brought to our prayers the advent of a god
to help us at our need. For Hercules,
divine avenger, came from laying low
three-bodied Geryon, whose spoils he wore
exultant, and with hands victorious drove
the herd of monster bulls, which pastured free
along our river-valley. Cacus gazed
in a brute frenzy, and left not untried
aught of bold crime or stratagem, but stole
four fine bulls as they fed, and heifers four,
all matchless; but, lest hoof-tracks point his way,
he dragged them cave-wards by the tails, confusing
the natural trail, and hid the stolen herd
in his dark den; and not a mark or sign
could guide the herdsmen to that cavern-door.
But after, when Amphitryon’s famous son,
preparing to depart, would from the meads
goad forth the full-fed herd, his lingering bulls
roared loud, and by their lamentable cry
filled grove and hills with clamor of farewell:
one heifer from the mountain-cave lowed back
in answer, so from her close-guarded stall
foiling the monster’s will. Continue Reading  Latin Text


Edited by Elena Bianchelli, Retired Senior Lecturer of Classical Languages and Culture, Univ. of Georgia, January 2021

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