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Ancient and Medieval Chronology

Geographical localization of ancient events
Part II

The complete manuscript of Histories by Herodotus was first discovered only in the 15th century [31]. This famous manuscript was brought by the Byzantine scientists to Western Europe after the capturing of Constantinople by the Turks in 1453. The importance of Herodotus for traditional history cannot be underestimated. But he declares, quite unexpectedly, that the Nile flows parallel to the Ister, which is now identified with the Danube (and not the Dniester). It turns out that "the opinion that the Danube and the Nile are parallel reigned in Medieval Europe even up to the end of the 13th century". Thus Herodotus makes the typical error that is characteristic of medieval authors.

The identification of Herodotus' geographical data with the modern map entails great difficulties within the framework of the events described in traditional localization.

In particular, numerous corrections which the modern commentators are forced to introduce if they perform such identification show that "Herodotus' map" is, possibly, reversed with respect to the modern one (with East and West interchanged). Such orientation is typical for many a medieval map. The commentators are forced to assume on different pages of Herodotus' Histories the same names for quite different seas. For example, according to the modern commentators, to retain the traditional localization of events described by Herodotus, the following "identifications" should be made, namely, Red Sea = Southern Sea = Black Sea = Mediterranean Sea = Arabian Gulf = Our Sea == Indian Ocean.

The fact that Herodotus mentions Crestonia and Creston seems to be quite strange. For Herodotus, there exist even the whole region of Crestonia, the town of Creston, the country of Crossae, and the district of Crestonaei. According to Herodotus, the Crestonaei were invaders from other countries [31].

It is possible that all these references were related to the medieval Crusaders ("cross" is also a Crusader term used in the Middle Ages) flooding Greece in the 12th-13th centuries. (See also works asserting that 15.44 of Tacitus' Annals originally had christianos for chrestianos, which also assimilates Herodotus' terminology to the medieval one [38].

Learn how and why Ancient Rome, Greece and Egypt were invented during Renaissance.

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