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From Alexander to Jesus$
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Ory Amitay

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780520266360

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520266360.001.0001

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The Passage to India

The Passage to India

(p.39) 3 The Passage to India
From Alexander to Jesus

Ory Amitay

University of California Press

In late spring or early summer of 327, Alexander the Great once more crossed the Hindu Kush—his Caucasus—and passed into India. He was congratulated by a number of kinglets from the neighborhood as the third son of Zeus, after Dionysos and Herakles. Herakles freed Prometheus from his shackles somewhere on the Hindu Kush, but for Alexander that was a recent discovery. Dionysos had visited Baktria, as everyone knew from Euripides, but the playwright never suggested that the God had also visited India. Still in the northernmost parts of India, Alexander came to the rock Aornos. He also reached the land of the Siboi (or Sibai), at the confluence of the Hydaspes and the Akesines. Early in 325, two years after the invasion of India, Alexander celebrated the successful conclusion to the campaign against the Malloi and Oxydrakai. The “battle of the Gods” marks the last appearance of Herakles in the historical accounts of Alexander's campaign.

Keywords:   Alexander the Great, Hindu Kush, Zeus, India, Dionysos, Herakles, Aornos, Siboi, battle of the Gods

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