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Ancient Classical

By Andrew Nichols

A Greek medical professional serving on the court docket of the Persian king Artaxerxes II within the 5th century BC, Ctesias met travelers and viewers from the a long way jap reaches of the Persian Empire, retailers from alongside the Silk highway and Indians from close to the Indus Valley. His Indika (On India), was once the 1st monograph ever written on India by means of a western writer, introducing its readers to such marvelous creatures because the unicorn and the martichora, besides actual existence matters comparable to the parrot and the artwork of falconry. Confirming pre-existing conceptions of what have been thought of to be the sides of the earth, Ctesias' Indika assisted in shaping the Greek view of India.

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105 He claims that while it was dangerous in his father’s time, it was safe in his day thus expressing the medical advances achieved in the fifth century. 35 Ctesias: On India The essays On Mountains (F73) and On Rivers (F74) have been deemed spurious by Jacoby, despite the fact that they are both mentioned by title. Although they are unattested elsewhere, which certainly renders their existence as individual works suspect, the content of their fragments show that they come from genuine works of Ctesias.

91-4; 1983 pp. 518-19). 53. See for example the goods associated with the Cynocephaloi, which Ctesias seems to have viewed firsthand (F45 §40-1). 54. See for example the study of Sarianidi 1998 pp. 34-7; similarly other animals found in the Indika of Indian origin such as monkeys appear in early Bactrian art (ibid. 42). 55. See note on F45 §26 for a full discussion of the evidence. 41 Ctesias: On India 56. g. Lenfant (2004 p. 324 n. 912). 57. See for example Robertson (1979); for depictions on lamps see Grandjouan (1961).

151-2); Root (1979 pp. 227-84). 51. Zhang Qian, the Chinese emissary during the Han Dynasty (first century BCE) who was sent along the Silk Road, famously recorded his visit to Bactria (Daxia); the account survives in the Shiji of Sima Qian. However, the discovery of Chinese silk dating from the Middle Bronze Age indicates that Bactria was an important trading post along the Silk Road early on (cf. Whitfield and Sims-Williams 2004 p. 46) 52. By 2000 BCE the settlement had become Bactrian in culture.

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