Page:Historical Works of Venerable Bede vol. 2.djvu/243

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
171
OF VENERABLE BEDE.

divides it in the middle, and the banks are rendered most luxuriant by the deposits of the river; so that the produce of the trees is everywhere most abundant along the margin of the stream, but elsewhere it is rather scanty; for the soil, except where the river runs, is dry and barren.

 

 

CHAPTER XI.

OF THE RIVER JORDAN AND THE SEA OF GALILEE, OTHERWISE CALLED THE SEA OF TIBERIAS.

The river Jordan.The sources of the Jordan itself are commonly thought The river to be in the province of Phœnicia, at the foot of Mount Libanus, where Panium, or Cæsarea Philippi, is situated. This town, Panium, so called as descriptive of the cave from which the river Jordan flows, is said to have been built up and adorned by King Agrippa, with wonderful magnificence. In the country of Trachonitis, there is a fountain, after the likeness of a wheel, from which it has received the name of Phiale, fifteen miles distant from Cæsarea, full of sweet water, and having this peculiarity, that it never overflows, and yet never can be diminished. Philip, the tetrarch of this district, threw straw into this fountain, which was again cast up by the river in Panium. It is therefore evident that the sources of the Jordan are in Phiale; but that, after passing underground, it resumes its course in Phiale, and entering the lake, flows right through its shallows, and from thence proceeds without any break, for the space of fifteen miles, to a city named Julias, and thence divides the lake of Gennesar half-way on its whole course. After this it winds about for a long distance, and as it enters the Asphaltian, i. e. the Dead Sea, it presents a remarkable mass of waters. The colour of it is white.