First English edition of the Nuremberg chronicle: being the Liber chronicarum of Dr. Hartmann Schedel…

Finally the river empties into the Persian Sea, or, as some say, into the Red Sea.

According to Genesis 2:14 "the third river is Hiddekel: That is it which goes toward the east of Assyria." Schedel assumes this to be the Tigris. Yet it is almost universally agreed that the Tigris and the Euphrates (the latter of which is specifically named in the Scriptures) are two of the four rivers flowing out of Paradise. Undoubtedly the chronicler used the following passage from
Pliny's Natural History (chap. 31) as a source for his description of the Tigris:

This river rises in the region of Greater Armenia, from a very remarkable source situated on a plain. The name of the spot is Elegosine, and the stream, as soon as it begins to flow, though with a slow current, has the name of Diglito. When its course becomes more rapid, it assumes the name of Tigris, given to it one account of its swiftness, that word signifying an arrow in the Median language. It then flows into Lake Arethusa, the waters of which are able to support all weighty substances thrown into them, and exhale nitrous vapors. This lake produces only one kind of fish, which, however, never enter the current of the river in its passage through the lake; and in a similar manner, the fish of the Tigris will never swim out of its stream into the waters of the lake. Distinguishable from the lake, both by the rapidity and the color of its waters, the tide of the river is hurried along; and after it has passed through and arrived at Mount Taurus, it disappears in a cavern of that mountain, and passing under it, bursts forth on the other side; the spot bears the name of Zorande. That the waters on either side of the mountain are the same, is evident from the fact that bodies thrown in on the one side will reappear on the other. It then passes through another lake, called Thospites, and once more burying itself in the earth, reappears, after running a distance of twenty-two miles, in the vicinity of Nymphaeum. Claudius Caesar informs us that in the district of Arreme it flows so near to the river Arsanias, that when their waters swell they meet and flow together, but without, however, intermingling. For those of the Arsani, as he says, being lighter, float on the surface of the Tigris for a distance of nearly four miles, after which they separate, and the Arsanias flows into the Euphrates . . . . After traversing the mountains of the Gordyaei, it passes round Apamea, a town of Mesene, one hundred and twenty-five miles on this side of Babylonian Seleucia, and then divides into the channels, one of which runs southward, and flowing through Mesene, runs towards Seleucia, while the other takes a turn to the north and passes through the plains of the Cauchae, at the back of the district of Mesene. When the waters have reunited, the river assumes the name of Pasitigris. After this it receives the Choaspes, which comes from Media; and then, flowing between Seleucia and Ctesiphon, discharges itself into the Chaldaean Lakes, which it supplies for a distance of seventy miles. Escaping from them by a vast channel, etc., it empties itself into the Persian Sea, being ten miles in width at the mouth.


And the fourth river is the Euphrates,[Genesis 2:14] called the fruit-bearer. It is in great renown among the rivers. Some say that its source was in Paradise; others, that it arises in Mount Paracoathras, in Greater Armenia, not far from the source of the Tigris. And as it receives the waters of its confluents, and gains in volume, it becomes more powerful in its course toward the Taurus mountains. Encountering no resistance there, it continues on its course, developing rapids and becoming stronger; and it leaves Comagene on the right, and Arabia on the left. According to some, it divides into two channels, one of which flows into the Tigris, while the other runs on into Media, Gordyaea, and Mesopotamia, and parts of Babylonia. Although the river was originally large and navigable, it later divides into broad marshes and brooks, to such an extent that its source cannot be identified. Some say it flows into the Red Sea. It is also said that its waters are life-giving; wherefore the ancients call it an augmenter of years.

Homer says that the whole earth is enclosed by a great sea; wherefore it is also called an island. Wherever the land ends one finds water. The sea flows from the west, passing Europe on the left and Africa on the right. Proceeding through the two sundered mountains, called the Pillars of Hercules,[Pillars of Hercules was the name given in ancient times to the mountains of Calpe (now Rock of Gibraltar) and Abyla (now Jebel Zatout), one on the European and the other on the African side of the straits which connect the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. The name Gibraltar, also applied to the straits in modern times, is derived from Jeb-el-Taric (or Gebel-Tarik), meaning "Mount of Taric." Taric was the name of the one-eyed Berber or Moorish conqueror who landed there on April 30th, 711 CE. To commemorate his victory he called the giant rock by his own name, which has been retained in the modern Gibraltar. These two great promontories the ancients called the Pillars of Hercules from the fable that they were originally one mountain, which was torn asunder by Hercules.] it flows between Mauretania, the land of the Moors, and Spain, and spreads out as a sea in an easterly direction. And so there are two seas, one that encompasses the earth, the other that flows through it. These two seas bear various names, depending on the countries, islands, regions, cities and communities which they pass or touch. There was once a doubt whether the earth could be circumnavigated. For instance, Strabo contends that neither the southern seas (because of the unbearable heat), nor the northern seas (because of the cold), can be navigated; but Julius Solinus, the historian, states that the entire sea, surrounding the earth from India to Spain, back of Africa, is navigable. Moreover, Pliny of Verona cites several different instances of navigation in these regions. He states that a number of merchants, mentioned in his books and writings, with cargoes of merchandise, were seen, destined from Spain to Ethiopia, the land of the Moors. Concerning the northern sea there has been great controversy, although it is known that under the auspices of the emperor Augustus this sea, which in large part adjoins Germany, was navigated as far as the Cixubri. So also, in the reigns of Seleucus and Antiochus, the Caspian shores were explored by the Macedonian army, and in a short time the entire northern regions were navigated. To this Pliny testifies on the authority of Cornelius, according to information given by the king of the Suevi to a Roman proconsul of Gaul. He speaks of certain merchants of India, who for purposes of trade, sailed from India and were driven to the coast of Germany by tempestuous seas. Otto, the historian, states that during the reigns of the German emperors, merchants sailing from India were captured, having been driven from the Orient to the German coast by violent storms. But, as some maintain, this simply could not have happened because the northern sea was frozen and unnavigable.[.]