, Strab. xi. pp. 506, 507, 510, 525; Pol. 5.44; Ptol. 6.2.5
; Steph. B. sub voce
3.19; Mela, 1.2.48; Plin. Nat. 6.13. s. 15
), a people inhabiting a mountainous district of Media Atropatene. on SW. shores of the Caspian Sea, between the parallels of 39° and 37° N. lat.
This district was probably bounded on the N. by the Cyrus (Kúr
), and on the S. by the Mardus or Amardus (Sefid Rúd
), and corresponds with the modern district of Gilan. They are described by Strabo (xi. p.525
) as a warlike tribe of mountaineers, fighting chiefly on foot, and well skilled in the use of the short spear or javelin. They appear to have been constantly at war with their neighbours. Thus Diodorus (1.33
) speaks of a war between them and the Medians, which was not completely set at rest till Cyrus transferred the empire to the Persians; and they are constantly mentioned in the subsequent Eastern wars as the allies of one or other party. (Xen. Hell. 2.1. 13
; Diod. 15.18
; Just. 10.3
; Pol. 5.79; Liv. 35.48
It is not improbable that the name of Gelae, a tribe who are constantly associated with them, has been preserved in the modern Gilán.