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Melpomene   


them than among any other Libyans. In most of their customs they ape
the manners of the Cyrenaeans.
Westward of the Asbystae dwell the Auschisae, who possess the
country above Barca, reaching, however, to the sea at the place called
Euesperides. In the middle of their territory is the little tribe of
the Cabalians, which touches the coast near Tauchira, a city of the
Barcaeans. Their customs are like those of the Libyans above Cyrene.
The Nasamonians, a numerous people, are the western neighbours
of the Auschisae. In summer they leave their flocks and herds upon the
sea-shore, and go up the country to a place called Augila, where
they gather the dates from the palms, which in those parts grow
thickly, and are of great size, all of them being of the fruit-bearing
kind. They also chase the locusts, and, when caught, dry them in the
sun, after which they grind them to powder, and, sprinkling this
upon their milk, so drink it. Each man among them has several wives,
in their intercourse with whom they resemble the Massagetae. The
following are their customs in the swearing of oaths and the
practice of augury. The man, as he swears, lays his hand upon the tomb
of some one considered to have been pre-eminently just and good, and
so doing swears by his name. For divination they betake themselves
to the sepulchres of their own ancestors, and, after praying, lie down
to sleep upon their graves; by the dreams which then come to them they
guide their conduct. When they pledge their faith to one another, each
gives the other to drink out of his hand; if there be no liquid to
be had, they take up dust from the ground, and put their tongues to
it.
On the country of the Nasamonians borders that of the Psylli,
who were swept away under the following circumstances. The
south-wind had blown for a long time and dried up all the tanks in
which their water was stored. Now the whole region within the Syrtis
is utterly devoid of springs. Accordingly the Psylli took counsel
among themselves, and by common consent made war upon the southwind-
so at least the Libyans say, I do but repeat their words- they went
forth and reached the desert; but there the south-wind rose and buried
them under heaps of sand: whereupon, the Psylli being destroyed, their
lands passed to the Nasamonians.
Above the Nasamonians, towards the south, in the district where
the wild beasts abound, dwell the Garamantians, who avoid all
society or intercourse with their fellow-men, have no weapon of war,
and do not know how to defend themselves.
These border the Nasamonians on the south: westward along the
sea-shore their neighbours are the Macea, who, by letting the locks
about the crown of their head grow long, while they clip them close
everywhere else, make their hair resemble a crest. In war these people
use the skins of ostriches for shields. The river Cinyps rises among
them from the height called "the Hill of the Graces," and runs from
thence through their country to the sea. The Hill of the Graces is
thickly covered with wood, and is thus very unlike the rest of
Libya, which is bare. It is distant two hundred furlongs from the sea.
Adjoining the Macae are the Gindanes, whose women wear on their
legs anklets of leather. Each lover that a woman has gives her one;
and she who can show the most is the best esteemed, as she appears
to have been loved by the greatest number of men.
A promontory jutting out into the sea from the country of the
Gindanes is inhabited by the Lotophagi, who live entirely on the fruit
of the lotus-tree. The lotus fruit is about the size of the lentisk
berry, and in sweetness resembles the date. The Lotophagi even succeed
in obtaining from it a sort of wine.
The sea-coast beyond the Lotophagi is occupied by the Machlyans,
who use the lotus to some extent, though not so much as the people
of whom we last spoke. The Machlyans reach as far as the great river
called the Triton, which empties itself into the great lake
Tritonis. Here, in this lake, is an island called Phla, which it is
said the Lacedaemonians were to have colonised, according to an

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