A sunny summer day on the Iberian Peninsula On July 16, 2016, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard NASA’s Aqua satellite captured a true-color image of a sunny summer day on the Iberian Peninsula.
The Iberian Peninsula /aɪˈbɪəriən/, also known as Iberia, is a peninsula in the southwest corner of Europe, defining the westernmost edge of Eurasia. It is principally divided between Spain and Portugal, comprising most of their territory, as well as a small area of Southern France, Andorra and the British overseas territory of Gibraltar. With an area of approximately 583,254 square kilometres (225,196 sq mi), and a population of roughly 53 million, it is the second largest European peninsula by area, after the Scandinavian Peninsula.
The ancient Greeks reached the Iberian Peninsula, of which they had heard from the Phoenicians, by voyaging westward on the Mediterranean. Hecataeus of Miletus was the first known to use the term Iberia, which he wrote about circa 500 BC. Herodotus of Halicarnassus says of the Phocaeans that “it was they who made the Greeks acquainted with Iberia.” According to Strabo, prior historians used Iberia to mean the country “this side of the Ἶβηρος” (Ibēros, the Ebro) as far north as the Rhône, but in his day they set the Pyrenees as the limit. Polybius respects that limit, but identifies Iberia as the Mediterranean side as far south as Gibraltar, with the Atlantic side having no name. Elsewhere he says that Saguntum is “on the seaward foot of the range of hills connecting Iberia and Celtiberia.”