Seleucus Nicator – Indo Greek Ruler who conquered All of Central Asia – Founder of Seleucid Dynasty – Father of Helena, Married to Chandragupta Maurya – 359 BC – 281 BC

Seleucus Nicator was born around 359 BC.  He was a fierce Greek warrior, Commander in Chief of Alexander, the Great. Later, Seleucus Nicator established his own Kingdom called Seleucid Dynasty not too far from territories claimed by Alexander the Great near Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran.

Seleucus Nicator - Indo Greek Ruler who conquered All of Central Asia - 359 BC - 281 BC

Seleucus Nicator – Indo Greek Ruler who conquered All of Central Asia – 359 BC – 281 BC

Seleucus Nicator into wars Maurya Dynasty in Indian Subcontinent 303 BC – 301 BC

Charged by his victories, Seleucus Nicator invaded parts of India that were under control of the Emperor Chandragupta Maurya. Seleucus Nicator is said to have fought tough battle to occupy Indus Valley region which was reclaimed by Chandragupta Maurya from Alexander the Great.

Moving ahead of Indus Valley towards India, Seleucus Nicator and his army had to face mighty Maurya Dynasty ruled by Chandragupta Maurya. The Indo Greek army fought hard but Maurya Dynasty was way too developed compared to the Greeks. As a result, Seleucus Nicator and his army would have perhaps weakened and defeated and have thought about a negotiation.

Map of Empire of Seleucus Nicator and Seleucid Dynasty Around 300 BC

Map of Empire of Seleucus Nicator and Seleucid Dynasty Around 300 BC

And after fighting a long battle of spanning 24 months, Seleucus Nicator made a beneficial deal with the Maurya King and gained 500 skilful War Elephants in return of surrendering the Eastern Satrapies of his Empire. The elephants that were exchanged by Chandragupta Maurya helped Seleucus Nicator in Battle of Ipsus in 298 BC.

ChandraGupta Maurya with Helena from Babylon

ChandraGupta Maurya with Helena from Babylon

Seleucus Nicator attack on Mauryan Empire was termed fruitless by historians who believe that Seleucus Nicator’s relationship with Chandragupta Maurya helped the latter to further expand his territories.

Indo Greeks knew Chandragupta Maurya as Sandrocottus who finds a mention in Megasthenes Indica.

Helena – Daughter of Seleucus Nicator, married to Chandragupta Maurya as a Diplomatic Move

Seleucus Nicator, in an extension of improving relationship with the Mauryan Kingdom married his Indo-Greek princess with Chandragupta Maurya. Seleucus Nicator not only exchanged a piece of land with Chandragupta Maurya but he also gave away his daughter Helena in marriage to the Maurya Emperor.

Helena played an important role in enhancing Chandragupta Maurya’s knowledge about Greeks.

Seleucus Nicator – Megasthenes, Ambassador to Mauryan Palace

Apart from establishing Diplomatic ties with the mighty Chandragupta Maurya, Seleucus Nicator arranged for an ambassador named Megasthenes who wrote Indica – An Account of Mauryan Empire.

Seleucus Nicator is said to have received many gifts and pleasantries such as Aphrodisiacs from the Mauryan Emperor which showed the diplomatic ties and cordial relationship that Seleucus Nicator shared with the Maurya King Chandragupta Maurya.

Seleucus Nicator – Coins found in Indian Subcontinent

Many coins bearing the name of Seleucus Nicator – Basileus that are older than 310 BC have been discovered in present day India. The excavated coins simply showcase the association of the Greek warrior – Seleucus Nicator with Chandragupta Maurya and India.

Coins of Seleucus Nicator

Coins of Seleucus Nicator

Death of Seleucus Nicator

Seleucus Nicator was assassinated at the hands of Ptolemy Keraunos near Lysimachia in September 281 BC.

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