Prominent among them, and dwelling in the division occupied by the Celts, were the Helvetii, the Sequani and the Aedui, in the basins of the Rhodanus and its tributary the Arar (Saone), who, he says, were reckoned the three most powerful nations in all Gaul; the Arverni in the mountains of Cebenna; the Senones and Carnutes in the basin of the Liger; the Veneti and other Armorican tribes between the mouths of the Liger and Sequana.
6-7) who tells us that it was the last oppidum of the Allobroges, and the nearest to the territory of the Helvetii, with which it was connected by a bridge that, for military reasons, he was forced to destroy.
In 58 B.C. the Helvetii, a Celtic people inhabiting Switzerland, determined to migrate for the shores of the Atlantic and demanded a passage through Roman territory.
With this he marched to Geneva, destroyed the bridge over the Rhone, fortified the left bank of the river, and forced the Helvetii to follow the right bank.
Hastening back to Italy he withdrew his three remaining legions from Aquileia, raised two more, and, crossing the Alps by forced marches, arrived in the neighbourhood of Lyons to find that three-fourths of the Helvetii had already crossed the Saone, marching westward.
He destroyed their rearguard, the Tigurini, as it was about to cross, transported his army across the river in twenty-four hours, pursued the Helvetii in a northerly direction, and utterly defeated them at Bibracte (Mont Beuvray).
Towards both the south and west the Teutonic peoples seem to have been pressing the Celts for some considerable time, since we are told that the Helvetii had formerly extended as far as the Main, while another important Celtic tribe, the Volcae Tectosages, had occupied a still more remote position, which it is impossible now to identify.
The Boii were expelled from their territories inBohemia by the Marcomanni in the time of Augustus, and the Helvetii are also recorded to have occupied formerly lands east of the Rhine, in what is now Baden and Wurttemberg.