Page:Roman History of Ammianus Marcellinus.djvu/91

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A.D. 355.]
79
PROVINCES OF GAUL.

Metz and Treves, which city is the splendid abode of the chief governor of the country.

10. Next to that comes the second Belgic province, where we find Amiens, a city of conspicuous magnificence, and Chalons,[1] and Rheims.

11. In the province of the Sequani, the finest cities are Besancon and Basle. The first Lyonnese province contains Lyons, Chalons,[2] Sens, Bourges, and Autun, the walls of which are very extensive and of great antiquity.

12. In the second Lyonnese province are Tours, and Rouen, Evreux, and Troyes. The Grecian and Penine Alps have, besides other towns of less note, Avenche, a city which indeed is now deserted, but which was formerly one of no small importance, as even now is proved by its half-ruinous edifices. These are the most important provinces, and most splendid cities of the Galli.

13. In Aquitania, which looks towards the Pyrenees, and that part of the ocean which belongs to the Spaniards, the first province is Aquitanica, very rich in large and populous cities; passing over others, I may mention as pre-eminent, Bordeaux, Clermont, Saintes, and Poictiers.

14. The province called the Nine Nations is enriched by Ausch and Bazas. In the province of Narborme, the cities of Narbonne, Euses, and Toulouse are the principal places of importance. The Viennese exults in the magnificence of many cities, the chief of which are Vienne itself, and Arles, and Valence; to which may be added Marseilles, by the alliance with and power of which, we read that Rome itself was more than once supported in moments of danger.

15. And near to these cities is also Aix, Nice, Antibes, and the islands of Ilieres.

16. And since we have come in the progress of our work to this district, it would be inconsistent and absurd to omit all mention of the Rhone, a river of the greatest celebrity. The Rhone rises in the Penine Alps, from sources of great abundance, and descending with headlong impetuosity into the more champaign districts, it often overruns its banks with its own waters, and then plunges into a lake called Lake Leman, and though it passes through it, yet it never mingles with any foreign waters, but, rushing over the top of those which flow with less

  1. Châlons sur Marne.
  2. Châlons sur Saône.