Page:A Brief History of the Indian Peoples.djvu/90

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.


86 THE GREEKS IN INDIA. but, on tendering his submission, he was confirmed in his king- dom, and became Alexander's trusted friend. Alexander built two memorial cities on the site of his victory — Bucephala, on the west bank of the Jehlam (near the modern Jal&lpur), named after his beloved charger slain in the battle ; and Nikaia, the present Mong, on the east side of the river. Alexander in the Punjab. — Alexander advanced south- east through the kingdom of the younger Porus to Amritsar, and, after a sharp bend backward to the west to fight the Kathaei at Sangala, he reached the Beas (Hyphasis). Here, at a spot not far from the modern battle-field of Sobraon, he halted his victorious standards. He had resolved to march to the Ganges ; but his troops were worn out by the heats of the Punjab summer, and broken in spirit by the hurricanes of the south-west monsoon. The native tribes had already risen in his rear ; and the Conqueror of the World was forced to turn back before he had crossed even the frontier Province of India. The Sutlej, the eastern Districts of the Punjab, and the mighty Jumna still lay between him and the Ganges. A single defeat might have been fatal to his army ; if the battle on the Jehlam had gone against him, not a Greek would probably have reached the Afghan side of the passes. Yielding at length to the clamour of his men, he led them back to the Jehlam. He there em- barked 8000 of his troops in boats, and floated them down the river through the Southern Punjab to Sind ; the remainder of his army marched in two divisions along the banks. Alexander in Sind. — The country was hostile, and the Greeks held only the land on which they encamped. At Multan, then as now the capital of the Southern Punjab, Alexander had* to fight a pitched battle with the Malli, and was severely wounded in taking the city. His enraged troops put every soul within it to the sword. Farther down, near the confluence of the Five Rivers of the Punjab, he made a long halt, built a town, Alexan- dria, — the modern Uchh,— and received the submission of the neighbouring states. A Greek garrison and satrap, whom he here left behind, laid the foundation of a lasting Greek influence. Having constructed a new fleet, suitable for the greater rivers on which he was now to embark, Alexander proceeded southwards