Page:Journal of the Royal Geographical Society of London, Volume 1 (2nd edition).djvu/131

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.


7f? Black Sea. IO? was to them it place of much resort, the scene of some of the earliest adventures of their poetical history, an ample field for their favourite practice of colonization, and the emporium from which they procured many of the luxuries and necessaries of life. ?qeither the barbarians of the western or northern shores, nor the Asiatic potentates on its southern and eastern banks, could exercise dominion over the Euxine; yet they who have held Con- Itanfinople and its canal have at all times, from their geographical position, possessed the greatest influence over its navigation and commereei and although this very position, and the facility which it afforded of exacting tribute from foreign merchants, have some- times expo,ed the city to hostile attacks, yet it has much more frequently, from the same cause, been the object of courteous attention on the part of foreign powers, even when, as at present? the military character of its inhabitants may have sunk below mediocrity. Byzanfium, says Polybius, writing about one hundred and fifty years* before Christ, occupies a position as remarkable for its excellence in regard to the sea, as for its badness in respect to the land; and without her will no merchant can sail either to or from the Euxine. The Byzantines are therefore masters of that branch of commerce; and it is through them that the articles, for the supply of which the Euxine is celebrated, are brought into the markets of the Mediterranean i and these he states to be cattle'? and aleyes of the best description, honey, wax, and salt fish. The trade in corn does not appear to have been then, as now, one elusively of export from the Black Sea; but alternately of import and export, according, no doubt, to the seasons, and the state of demand under the various latitudes. In a fragment of Polybius, quoted by Atheaa?us (lib. vi. cap. 41.), we find mention again �made of the ?xport of salt fish from the Euxine. It was one of the foreign luxuries introduced at Rome which drew down the indignation of Cato the censor, who complained that the Roman citizens would purchase a jar or small barrel of the salted or pickled fish of the Euxine, perhaps our caviare among the rest, at the price of three hundred drachms (something under 10/.), and comely youths for slaves at a cost greater than that of an estate.

  • His birth could not be earlier than B.C., 210, and his death could not be bofors

t? yasr 129 B.O. He died of a fall from his horse at eighty-two, and appears to have written within the lasl; twenty years of his time.--$ee Cllnton's Fasti Helle?ic? vol. ii., p. !19. iv. cap. 38); ami if so,/?/des are not to be reckoned (as they nave veen oy' Falconer and others) among the ancient experIs, although they are among the modern. Honey said W?i:? ?-? still produced in abundance, end form articles of export as well from the neighbourhood of Trobi?. hd, where Xenophon describes the dangerous effect produced by the honey upon his soldiers, as from Taganrog within the sea of ?Se* 2'r?ds b? Tlum? M'Gill, 12me. vol. i. pp. 210, 212. � Dig,tiz?d by Google