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HYDASPES (Ὑδάσπης, Strab. xv. p.686; Plin. Nat. 6.20. s. 23; Mela, 3.7. 6; Curt. 4.5; Dion. Perieg. 5.1139), one of the principal rivers of that part of India called the Panjáb. It rises in the north-western Himáleh mountains in Kashmir, and, after flowing nearly S., falls into the Acesines or Chenâb. Its Sanscrit name was Vitastâ, which is probably preserved in that of one of its modern titles, of the river of Behut. Its present most usual name is Jelum. It was on the banks of this river that Alexander built his fleet of timber which he procured from the Montes Emodi (western Himáleh) (Strab. [p. 1.1101]xv. p. 698), and fought the great battle with Porus, founding, after its successful termination, two cities in commemoration of it,--Nicaea (now Behut?) and Bucephala. (Arrian, Arr. Anab. 5.19.) Arrian remarks that the Hydaspes, on flowing into the Acesines, lost its name; but that the Acesines, after receiving the Hydraotes, preserved its title unchanged (6.14; Curt. 9.4). The river seems to have been considered one of great size by the historians of Alexander's invasion, as it is stated that Alexander saw crocodiles on its banks. (Strab. xv. p.696.) Many wonderful stories seem to have been related about it by the poets, whence Horace speaks of “fabulosus Hydaspes” (Carm. 1.22. 8). Virgil calls it “Medus Hydaspes” (Georg. 4.211), using Medus in the general sense of eastern. Ptolemy calls it Bidaspes (Βιδάσπης, 7.1. 26), which is nearer to its native name than the more common Greek appellation.


hide References (4 total)
  • Cross-references from this page (4):
    • Pliny the Elder, Naturalis Historia, 6.20
    • Arrian, Anabasis, 5.19
    • Curtius, Historiarum Alexandri Magni, 4.5
    • Curtius, Historiarum Alexandri Magni, 9.4
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