By J.Heyworth- Dunne
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He went to Memphis and then sailed downstream towards the sea to Canobus. IO According to Pausanias, a small town already existed there with the name Rhakotis, which survived as the name of the western end of the new city. II In his lifetime, the great king was to pause at many a place and decide that it was a goodly site for a city, but this city of Alexandria in Egypt was destined to be the greatest of them all. RY OF ALEXANDRIA record his enthusiasm for this particular site and his eagerness to mark out a plan of the city.
19 But now our ship is being moored right at the steps of the shore because the harbour is deep enough to allow even the largest ship to moor alongside the embankment at the water's very edge. Since our cargo includes bundles of books, we will be allowed to dock in the Royal Harbour which has been dug and shaped by the hand of man. As we sail close along the edge of the promontory which is called Lochias, I can see the royal palace and the groves and an extraordinary number of lodges painted in a variety of colours.
Some of these buildings are now over three hundred years old and have fallen into neglect, but when I have descended the Paneium and continue once more along the Meson Pedion, I come next to Strabo's favourite building in Alexandria. This is the bastion of Hellenistic physical and intellectual education especially for the Hellenistic young, the Gymnasium, with its breathtaking porticoes that are more than a stade or about 200 metres in length (a stade = 200 metres). From here I cross the thirty-metre wide Meson Pedion and come to the Mausoleum or the Serna, the enclosure which contains the burial 40 ALEXANDRIA: THE UMBILICUS OF THE ANCIE"iT WORLD places of the thirteen Kings of the name Ptolemy of Alexandria - and Alexander himself.