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date: 08 December 2022



  • Thomas Robert Shannon Broughton
  •  and Stephen Mitchell


Pontus was the region of northern *Asia Minor including the south coast of the Black (*Euxine) Sea between *Paphlagonia and *Colchis and extending southward to *Cappadocia. It is dominated by a series of mountain ranges, separated by deep valleys, which run parallel to the coast and dictate the lines of overland communication. The valleys of the rivers *Halys, Iris, and Lycus, lead to fertile coastal deltas, and the basins of the last two belonged to the territories of the cities of the Pontic heartland—*Amaseia, *Zela, and Comana. The best traverse route from coast to interior ran from *Amisus to Sebasteia. Pontus is well watered and fertile, with a mild, damp climate on the coast and in the valleys. Olives and other fruits, nuts, pasture, and grain were in abundant supply near the coast; the coastal ranges supplied timber, especially for ship-building, and the mountains were rich in iron (see chalybes), copper, silver, salt, and alum.


  • Ancient Geography

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