It is in the middle of the sea and is three days
and as many nights' distant from the Pillars of Hercules; a day and a night
are sufficient to reach Libia, and one day's journey separates it from Iberia.
Its extension is the same as that of Corfu and it is moderately fertile:
there are a few vineyards and oleasters grafted with olive-sprigs. And the
wools produced there are of great renown, remarkable for their softness.
It is crossed by pleasant meadows and hills and it has a city named Ebusos,
and it is a colony of the Cathaginians. It also has ports worthy of mention
and great walls as well as a considerable number of admirably built houses.
It is inhabited by barbarians of all types, principally Phoenicians. The
colonization of this island took place more than one hundred and seventy
years after the founding of Carthage."
The islands of Ibiza and Formentera were known to the Greeks
by the names of Pytioussa and Ophioussa. The Carthaginian colonizers gave
Ibiza the name of Ibosim, Aibusim, or Ebusim, which means Island of Bes
-a mischevious Egyptian god celebrations, fire and fertility, which the
Carthaginians adopted- and on coins the name appeared under the abbreviation
IBSM. Many of these coins have been found on Ibiza.
Variations of the name Ibosim:
- Iberian - Ebeso
- Greek - Ebysos
- Latin - Ebusus
- Arab - Yebisah
- Catalan - Eivissa
- Castilian - Ibiza
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