Alexander Feared Bengalis, Fled


I have expressed,through my many articles,that the history of India is not only old but is also a record of people,their lives,kings and events and lamented the fact that  though precious information is found in Indian regional languages they do not get the attention it deserves.

Main reason is that most of us learn our history through English knowing well it is doctored.

An inexplicable reluctance to study and research our langages Sanskrit and other regional languages has landed us a position where one finds it difficult to collate Indian History as a Unified one.

With my limited knowledge of English,Tamil and Sanskrit I have been exploring Indian History, cross referencing each other.

Thanks to Internet resources are available which had been out of reach.

No all English books carry misinformation.

It is that we have been allowed to study and read what suited the British and the psuedo Intellectuals of India.

Not only this, the English Translations of workks from Greek,Latin and other Historians open up a new window of Knowledge.

Aleander, the great.Image.
Alexander, The Great withdrew from attacking Bengal.

What I found, to my amazement, is that the facts mentioned in Indian Texts Vedas,Puranas,Ramayana,Mahabharta and Regional classics check out when tested out against the foreign sources.

It is the curse of Indians that they would trust others than their Mother !

For me, my cultuarl roots are primary and they would be verified against external sources.

In this process many myths perpetrated have been exposed, like Alexander Conquered India, Indians were a superstitious lot, Hinduism is mumbo jumbo,India had been a country of warring chieftains,Rama and Krishna were figment of Imagination!

I have written articles exposing these untruths with authentic sources.

My regret is that scholars of other Indian Languages, like Telugu,Kannnada,Bengali and others, have not been forthcoming with resources from their respective languages on Sanatana Dharma and ancient India.

If one has this information one can get a unified view of Indian History.

I have requested for information but of no avail.

With my knowledge of Sanskrit, and Tamil, though it is limited,I have been able to uneart real History of India.

Atleast now, would people from the other langauges come forward?

Because of my dependance on Sanskrit and Tamil I am accused being a Sanatana Dharma or Tamil Fanatic!

Be that as may, I shall continue my journey.

I have remarked in an earlier article that as civilizations are reported to be have sprung up on the Banks of Rivers, we need to check all the Major Rivers mentioned in Indian Texts.

The Rivers are,

Ganga,

Yamuna,

Godavari,

Saraswati,

Narmada,

Sindhu and Kaveri.

And there are two more rivers of antiquity in the south, Vaigai and Tambrabarani.

We have scratched Ganga,Saraswathi.

I have written on these two and an article each on Vaigai,Godavari and Vaigai.

And there are records of civilization having sprung  from Mountains as well.

This is evidenced from the Tamil Classics.

Recent findings of fossils belonging to ancient Man confirm this view.

I propose exploring this .

Now to anothe great langauge and culture of India which has been the bulwark of Sanatana Dharma.

It is Bengal and Bengalis.

Thanks to the ‘Divide and Rule’ policy of the Inavders of India, people of India belonging to different regions began identifying themselves with either the region they live in or the language they speak.

There has been only Sanatana Dharma and people , though they lived in different regions of India under different Kings, they did not have the regional tendencies nor was there any linguistic issue.

People were aware of the others and were receptive to other regional ideas and languages.

The term Bengali does not seem to have been in use in those days.

They were a part opf a culture called Sanatana Dharma and propagated it.

The Bengalis, who traditionally lived in the area where the Ganga met the Bay Of Bengal were a an ancient seafaring community through the East of India and their Kingdoms extended in these areas.

Along with the  Tamils they were the earliest settlers in South East India.

Tamils were also a seafaring a community.

The Bengalis, I am using the term to enable people follow the the thoughts, were an ancient people( I have written on the 28,000 year old History of the Bengalis) and were referred to by ancient Greeks.

The Bengalis or the Area that now comprises of West Bengal, India and Bangladesh, was called Gangaidai.

They were living in the region around the five mouths of  the River. Ganga where it meets the sea.

The kings possessed a great army including a  frightening army of Elephants.

This made Alexander, the Great to flee , fearing the Bengali Might.

I have earlier written on the fact that the success of Alexander in India was a Myth and he did not defeat Porus.

The only possible answer is at the Battle of Hydaspes, the Macedonians realised they were dealing with an enemy of uncommon valour. Sensing defeat they called for a truce, which Porus accepted. The Indian king struck a bargain – in return for Ambhi’s territories, which would secure his frontiers, Porus would assist the Macedonians in leaving India safely.

Alexander’s post-Hydaspes charitable behaviour, as per Greek accounts, is uncharacteristic and unlikely. For, in battles before and after, he massacred everyone in the cities he subdued’

Porus Defetas Alexander, spared his Life

Not onlky this, Alexander feared the Bengal King and withdrew without engaging in a battle..

The source for this information is ancient respected Greek Historians.

Gangaridai (Greek: Γανγαρίδαι; Latin Gangaridae) was an ancient kingdom, which existed around 300 BC, in the Bengal region of the Indian subcontinent. It was described by the Greek traveller Megasthenes in his work Indica. Greek and Latin historians suggested that Alexander the Great withdrew from the Indian subcontinent, anticipating the valiant joint counterattack of the mighty Gangaridai and Prasii (Nanda) Empires, the latter located in central Bihar. The capital of the Gangaridai was situated at Kotalipara in present-day Gopalganj District, Bangladesh.

This is what the Greek Hitorians have to say on this subject.
Ptolomy.

‘The Gangaridai occupied the entire region about the five mouths of the Ganges and that the royal residence was in the city of “Ganges”. The five mouths were:

  1. The Kambyson
  2. The Mega
  3. The Kamberikhon
  4. The Pseudostomonn..

 

‘ Among the southern countries the first under the Kaukasos is India, a kingdom remarkable for its vast extent and the largeness of its population, for it is inhabited by very many nations, among which the greatest of all is that of the Gandaridae, against whom Alexander did not undertake an expedition, being deterred by the multitude of their elephants. This region is separated from farther India by the greatest river in those parts (for it has a breadth of thirty stadia), but it adjoins the rest of India which Alexander had conquered, and which was well watered by rivers and highly renowned for its prosperous and happy condition. –Diodorus Siculus (1st century AD). Quoted from Ancient India as Described in Classical Literature, John W. McCrindle, p. 201.’

Next came the Ganges, the largest river in all India, the farther bank of which was inhabited by two nations, the Gangaridae and the Prasii, whose king Agrammes kept in field for guarding the approaches to his country 20,000 cavalry and 200,000 infantry, besides 2,000 four-horsed chariots, and, what was the most formidable of all, a troop of elephants which he said ran up to the number of 3,000. –Quintus Curtius Rufus (wrote between 60-70 AD). Quoted from The Classical Accounts of India, p. 103-128.

Plutarch noted both Gangaridae and Prasii together:

The Battle with Porus depressed the spirits of the Macedonians, and made them very unwilling to advance farther into India… This river (the Ganges), they heard, had a breadth of two and thirty stadia, and a depth of 1000 fathoms, while its farther banks were covered all over with armed men, horses and elephants. For the kings of the Gandaritai and the Prasiai were reported to be waiting for him (Alexander) with an army of 80,000 horse, 200,000 foot, 8,000 war-chariots, and 6,000 fighting elephants. –Plutarch (42-120 AD). Quoted from The Classical Accounts of India, p. 198.

‘Now this river, which at its source is 30 stadia broad, flows from north to south, and empties its waters into the ocean forming the eastern boundary of the Gangaridai, a nation which possesses a vast force of the largest-sized elephants. Owing to this, their country has never been conquered by any foreign king: for all other nations dread the overwhelming number and strength of these animals. [Thus Alexander the Macedonian, after conquering all Asia, did not make war upon the Gangaridai, as he did on all others; for when he had arrived with all his troops at the river Ganges, he abandoned as hopeless an invasion of the Gangaridai and India when he learned that they possessed four thousand elephants well trained and equipped for war.] –Megasthenes (c. 350 BC-290 BC). Quoted from the Epitome of Megasthenes, Indika. (Diod. II. 35-42. ), Ancient India as Described by Megasthenes and Arrian. Translated and edited by J.W. McCrindle.

‘Megasthanes in Indica.

References.

Image credit.www.findagrave.com

 

  • Sastri, K. A. Nilakanta, ed. (1988) [1967], Age of the Nandas and Mauryas (Second ed.), Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 81-208-0465-1
  • The Classical accounts of India, Dr. R. C. Majumdar. p. 103-128, 170-172, 190, 234, 341-343, 375.
  • Ancient India as Described in Classical literature, John W. McCrindle. p. 201.
  • Ancient India as Described by Ptolemy, John W. McCrindle. p. 172
  • The Periplus of the Erythraean Sea, Wilfred H. Schoff. p. 47-8.
  • Studies of Geography of Ancient and Medieval India, Dr. Dineshchandra Sarkar. p. 213, 218.
  • Political History of Ancient India. p. 231.
  • Pre-Aryan and Pre-Davidian in India, Jean Przyluski. p. 137
  • Historic Geography of Ancient and Early Medieval Bengal, Dr. Amitav Vattacharya. p. 38.
  • Ancient India as described by Megasthenes and Arrian ( 2nd Edition), J. W. McCrindle
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