Posidonius, a Greek stoic philosopher, born in Apamea in Syria, probably about 135 B. C, died in Rome about 51. He studied at Athens under Pansetius, and settled in Rhodes, where he became the head of the stoic school, was elected prytanis, and in 86 was sent as ambassador to Rome. He gave instruction to Cicero, and was on friendly terms with Pom-pey. None of his works exist entire; the fragments were published by Jacobus Bake (Posido-nii Rhodii Reliquice Doctrince, Leyden, 1810).

Positivism, Or Positive Philosophy

See Comte.

Potato Fly

See Cantharides.

Potato Worm

See Hawk Moth.


I. A Province Of S. Italy

A Province Of S. Italy, also known as Basilicata. (See Basilicata.) II* A town, capital of the province, on the E. slope of the Apennines, 83 m. E. S. E. of Naples; pop. about 19,000. It contains old walls, a handsome cathedral of the Doric order, a royal college, and a lyceum. Cotton, woollens, leather, and earthenware are manufactured. It has repeatedly suffered from earthquakes, especially in 1857. In the middle ages it was important, but was destroyed by Frederick II. and Charles of Anjou, and never fully recovered. The remains of the ancient city of Potentia are at La Murata, in the valley below the modern town.


Poti, a fortified town of Russia, in the Caucasian government of Kutais, at the mouth of the Phasis, on the Black sea, 160 m. in a direct line W. N. W. of Tiflis, with which it is connected by rail; pop. about 7,000. The population increases rapidly despite the unhealthy climate. The lack of a safe harbor is the chief drawback. Nevertheless the foreign and coasting trade and the transit trade with Persia amounted in 1873 to about $8,000,000. The inward and outward foreign vessels (mostly Russian) number in the aggregate 893, tonnage 216,924. The principal imports are manufactured goods and tobacco; the staple exports are silk, cocoons, and wool.

Potters Clay

See Clay.


Pottstown, a borough of Montgomery co., Pennsylvania, on the Schuylkill river, and on the Philadelphia and Reading railroad, at the junction of the Colebrookdale railroad, 32 m. N. W. of Philadelphia; pop. in 1870, 4,125; in 1875, about 6,000. It contains three rolling mills, a blast furnace, a nail factory, an iron foun-dery, a large car shop, two planing mills, steel wheel works, two metallic axle companies, two carriage manufactories, a soap factory, several cigar factories, etc. Another blast furnace is in course of erection (1875). The roadway and transportation departments of the Philadelphia and Reading railroad give employment to a large number of men. There are two banks, a young ladies' seminary, a private school for young men, 16 public schools, a circulating library, a daily and two weekly newspapers, and 12 churches. Fair grounds with a mile track for races are being laid out.

Pouched Rat

See Gopher.


See Octopus.

Pound Sterling

Pound Sterling, a denomination of money, originating from the pound weight of silver, which anciently was divided into 240 parts called pence. These pence were designated esterling, whence the name " sterling," the legal description of the English current coin. This is supposed by some writers to have been derived originally from Easterlings, the popular name of traders from the Baltic and from Germany, who visited London in the middle ages, and some of whom were probably employed in coining. By others it is supposed, perhaps with more probability, to be a diminutive of star, and in some old writers it is written starling, the penny being so called from the small star often stamped upon it. The pound sterling is a money of account; the gold coin representing it is called a sovereign, the current value of which in United States coin is now (1875) $4.8665.