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Elephants and KingsAn Environmental History$
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Thomas R. Trautmann

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780226264226

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226264530.001.0001

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The Near East, North Africa, Europe

The Near East, North Africa, Europe

(p.216) 6 The Near East, North Africa, Europe
Elephants and Kings

Thomas R. Trautmann

University of Chicago Press

Kings of Persia imported war elephants and Indian drivers. Alexander the Great acquired Indian elephants and elephant personnel. After his death the Hellenistic kingdoms used war elephants against one another. Seleucids of Syria got elephants from India, while Ptolemies of Egypt trained up African elephants using Indian elephant knowledge. Carthaginians, Romans, Sassanian kings of Persia and Ghaznavid Muslim kings also used war elephants. In all there are some seventy battles and sieges using elephants, across seven centuries, in the surviving records of these kingdoms.

Keywords:   Darius III, Alexander the Great, Poros, Seleucus Nicator, Ptolemy, Hannibal, Carthaginians, Sassanians

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