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GANGE´TICUS SINUS (Κόλπος Γαγγητικός, Ptol. 1.13.4, 7.1.16), the great gulf into which the Ganges flowed, now generally called the bay or gulf of Bengal. According to Ptolemy it was usual with the mariners of his day to call it 13,000 stadia across; whence, in order to allow for the irregularity of the course pursued, Ptolemy takes off one-third, and reduces the breadth to 8670 stadia. This is, however, more than twice the breadth of the real bay of Bengal. The fact is, Ptolemy, in common with all his predecessors, Hipparchus, Polybius, Marinus of Tyre, greatly extended the degrees of longitude of this part of the world; hence his Caspian Sea, Persian Gulf, and bay of Bengal are all much greater in breadth E. and W. than in length N. and S., which is just contrary to the fact.


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    • Claudius Ptolemy, Tetrabiblos, 1.13
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