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The waters of Hierapolis were surprisingly attempered for tinging wool with a colour from roots rivalling the more costly purples; and were a principal source of the riches of the place. The company of dyers is mentioned in the inscription,* on the square building among the sepulchres. That heroum, or monument, was to be crowned by them with garlands or festoons of flowers. The springs flowed so copiously, that the city was full of spontaneous baths, and Apollo, the tutelar deity of the Hierapolitans, with iEsculapius and Hygiea, on their medals, bear witness to the medicinal virtues wrhich they possess. The people, in some of their inscriptions, are styled the most splendid, and the senate the most powerful.
The pool before the theatre has been a bath, and marble fragments are visible at the bottom of the water, which is perfectly transparent, and of a briny taste. The women of the aga, after bathing in it, came to the theatre, where we were employed, to see us, with their faces muffled. They were succeeded by the aga, with several attendants. He was a young man of good deportment and uncommon afFabiKty. He discoursed with our janizary, sitting cross-legged, on the ruins, smoking and drinking coffee; and expressed his regret, that no water fit to drink could be discovered there; wishing, if we possessed the knowledge of any from our books, we would communicate it to him; saying, it would be a benefit, for which all future travellers should experience his gratitude.
Hierapolis was noted, besides its hot waters, for a Plutonium.-j- This was an opening in a small brow of the adjacent
* Inscript. Ant. p. 31.
t Strabo, p. 629. See Casaubon on the passage. Comment, p. 232.
mountain, capable of admitting a man, and very deep, with a square fence before it, inclosing about half an acre; which space was filled with black thick mist, so that the bottom could be scarcely discerned. The air, to those who approached it, was innocent on the outside of the fence, being clear of the mist in serene weather; it remaining then within the boundary; but there death abode. Bulls, as at Nysa, dropt down, and were dragged forth without life; and some sparrows, which Strabo let fly, instantly fell senseless. But eunuchs, the priests of Magna Mater, or Cybele, could go in quite to the aperture, lean forward, or enter it unharmed; but they held their breath, as their visages testified, and sometimes until in danger of suffocation. Strabo, the relater, was in doubt, whether all eunuchs could do this, or only they of the temple; and whether they were preserved by divine Providence, as in cases of enthusiasm, or were possessed of some powerful antidotes. But it is likely this mist was the condensed steam of the hot waters,-)- made noxious by the qualities of the soil; and that the whole secret of the priests consisted in carrying their faces high in the air, as another spectator has observed they always did; and in avoiding respiration when they stooped. I had hoped the description of this spot would have enabled me to find it, but I searched about for it unsuccessfully.
We descended to our tent at the approach of evening, by a steep track down the cliff, beginning beyond the pool, in which we also bathed with pleasure, on the side next the gymnasium. Our way was often rough and slippery, resembling ice, and our horses with difficulty preserved their
t Pausanias, p. 152.
footing. When arrived at our tent I renewed my inquiries for the Plutonium, and an old Turk, with a beard as white as snow, told me, he knew the place, that it was often fatal to their goats; and, accounting for the effect, said, it was believed to be the habitation of a demon, or evil spirit. We ascended again early in the morning to the theatre, where he had promised to join us; and a live fowl was intended to be the martyr of experiment. But we met this day with some unexpected interruption, which made us leave Hierapolis in haste, as will be related in a subsequent chapter.
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Of Coiiosa and the Lycus—Rise of the Maander and the Marsyas—Celana—Apamea Cibotos—Course of the Maander—Apamea subject to earthquakes—Route of Xerxes into Lydia.
It had been my intention to extend our journey eastward to the sources of the Maeander. We were prevented from advancing farther than Laodicea and Hierapolis. I shall therefore endeavour to supply the deficiency, by giving as clear an account, as I can, of the ancient geography of that region, which has been much perplexed.
Among the smaller places in Phrygia, lying round Laodicea and Apamea, was Colossae, once a large and populous city; where the Lycus, entering a chasm in the ground, disappeared for at most five stadia, or above half a mile; after which it re-emerged, and pursued its way by Laodicea to the Maeander.* The Lycus rose on Mount Cadmus, as did also another stream of the same name as the mountain.
Beyond Colossae was a summit, and once a city, named Celaenae if above which was a lake, where the reed grew, which was used as the tongue or mouth-piece of the aulos or flute, and where they fabled of Olympus, and of Marsyas, and his contest with Apollo. This lake was the reservoir or head of the Maeander and of the Marsyas,^: both which rose below it, separate, and were revered by all the Phrygians in those parts, who sacrificed to them, singly or jointly; calling on the river-god, to whom they offered, and throwing the thighs of the victims into the source; when the present was carried underground by the eddy, and given, as they said, to the stream for which it was designed; or if intended for both, divided; neither current invading the property of its neighbour.
Celaenae, a large and flourishing city at the sources of the two rivers below the lake, was the capital of Phrygia. The Great King or emperor of Persia, had a strong place beneath the citadel, by the springs of the Marsyas, which rose in the market>place, not less in size than the Maeander, and flowed through the city. Cyrus the younger, had also a place there, but by the springs of the Maeander, which river passed likewise through the city. He had, moreover, an extensive paradise or park, full of wild beasts, which he hunted on horseback for exercise or amusement; and watered by
* Herodotus, 1. f. c. 30. Strabo, p. 57& + Strabo, p. 578. See Commeut, p. 221.
X The Marsyas was the.river next Caria, as appears from the action mentioned in chap, lviii. The Carians were assembled by the Marsyas, and one of the leaders advised passing the Maeander, and fighting with that river in the rear.