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Who's Who Ancient Greece: Travel writer

Pausanius (2nd century AD)

Like Herodotos some three centuries before him, Pausanius was well travelled. Born in Magnesia in Asia Minor (south of Troy), he visited Egypt, Syria, Palestine, Arabia, Italy, and Greece, as well as travelling within Asia Minor itself. His ten volume work, preserved in its entirelty, 'Description of Greece', devotes one volume apiece to important regions of mainland Greece, such as Corinth, Attica, Voitia (Boeotia), Arcadia, Messenia, Elis, Arkhaia, etc.

It is believed to have been written between 160 and 180 AD. In these works, monuments, art works, sanctuaries, landscapes, towns, streets, rivers, customs, myths, traditions and anecdotes are all described. Most of his information is drawn from personal observation coupled with reports by local informants, and has been verified in many cases by the findings from archaeological research. Herodotos, in fact, provided the key to much of the investigation, archaeological and other, of ancient Greece. Pausanius is the patron saint of travel writers.