His descent of the rivers to the sea consumed seven months' time. And after emerging with his fleet into the ocean,
he sailed out to an island to which he himself gave the name of Scillustis, others that of Psiltucis.
Here he landed and sacrificed to the gods, and studied the nature of the sea and of all the sea-coast that was accessible. Then, after praying that no man after him might pass beyond the bounds of his expedition, he turned to go back.
His fleet he ordered to go round by sea, keeping India on the right; Nearchus was appointed admiral of the fleet, Onesicritus its chief-pilot. But he himself proceeded by land through the country of the Oreites, where he was reduced to the direst straits and lost a multitude of men, so that not even the fourth part of his fighting force was brought back from India. And yet his infantry had once numbered a hundred and twenty thousand, and his cavalry fifteen thousand.
But grievous diseases, wretched food, parching heats, and, worst of all, famine destroyed them, since they traversed an un-tilled country of men who dragged out a miserable existence, who possessed but few sheep and those of a miserable sort, since the sea-fish which they ate made their flesh unsavoury and rank. It was with difficulty, then, that Alexander passed through this country in sixty days; but as soon as he reached Gedrosia he had all things in abundance, for the nearest satraps and princes had provided them.