The name 'Paul', As In 'St. Paul', Is Of Indian Origin
Updated: Apr 4
Pal (Paul) a common and prevalent surname in Bengal (Bangladesh) and India, (with approximately 577,534 people bearing it), is traditionally believed to have originated from the Sanskrit pala, meaning protector or keeper (which is what the phallus symbolized). Ref - Tej Ram Sharma
There is ample evidence to show the Indian and Hindu origins of the Egyptian civilization and its religion. India is even called the 'Mother of Religions', with Hinduism being the worlds oldest, its roots and customs date back more than 4,000 years.
In both Egypt and India, the worship of the sun, snake, cow, and river are common. It is also interesting to note that terracotta mummies from Lothal (India's First Port City), and a similar terracotta mummy found at Mohenjo-daro, which was one of the largest settlements of the ancient Indus Valley Civilisation (which may be 8,000 years old), vaguely resembles an Egyptian mummy, and are said to have been wrapped in Indian muslin. Gordon Childe, an Australian archaeologist, remarked that the most striking link between India and Egypt, is the pattern of cord found in a copper tablet in the Indus Valley, and on three Egyptian seals. The seals had holes on the back through which the cord was passed through, and the seals were pressed onto clay or other similar materials, and it is believed they were used by merchants.
"In other words, in the third millennium B.C., India was already in a position to contribute to the building up of the cultural tradition that constitutes our spiritual heritage, as she notoriously has done since the time of Alexander."
A statement by Gordon Childe, an Australian archaeologist, who specialized in the study of European prehistory.
Klaus K. Klostermaier, a prominent German-Canadian scholar on Hinduism, Indian history and culture, states in his book 'A Survey of Hinduism', p.18, that:
"For several centuries a lively commerce developed between the ancient Mediterranean world and India, particularly the ports on the Western coast. The most famous of these ports was Sopara, not far from modern Bombay, which was recently renamed Mumbai. Present day Cranganore in Kerala, identified with the ancient Muziris, claims to have had trade contacts with Ancient Egypt under Queen Hatshepzut, who sent five ships to obtain spices, as well as with ancient Israel during King Soloman’s reign."
It appears that even after Greece and, later, Rome, conquered Egypt, the contact between these two countries did not cease.
The Indian Egypt Connection
After a catastrophic earthquake dried up the Sarasvati river around 6000 years ago, many groups of Indic (Indian, or relating to the subcontinent of India) people started moving West. In the historical record, an aristocracy with Indic names called the Kassites are recorded in Western Iran about 1800 B.C.E. The Kassites worshipped Surya (a Sanskrit word that means the Sun) and the Maruts (Hindu storm deities). After gaining power in Babylon in 1600 B.C.E, they ruled for over 500 years. Ref - ('The Old Hittite Kingdom'. Encyclopedia Britannica Online, and 'The Kassites in Babylonia'. Encyclopedia Britannica)
The foundations of Egypt's civilization seem to have began when the South Indians laid the foundation there. The Egyptians themselves, according to their texts, had the tradition that they originally came from a land called Punt (Pwent), or Pa-Nuter (in old Egyptian), "Land of the Gods", a trading partner of Egypt. In India, Sage is called 'sant' in Sanskrit, and sant also means 'God', and on the East Coast of India is the city 'Puri'. 'Puri' is land and 'sant' is God, combine the two words, as seems to be normal practice in ancient times, and we get 'Punt'. Puri has been known as one of the most spiritual cities, and it predates the Indus vally period, it also has many names in the Hindu scriptures.
Most scholars and historians, including Dr. Henry Reginald Holland Hall MBE, an English Egyptologist and historian, agree that Punt was located to the south and east of Egypt. India can be reached from Egypt by sailing in a south-east direction, following the ancient trade routes, known as the Silk Route, which led from Egypt to the ports on the coasts of India.
According to Dr. Henry Reginald Hall, 'Punt' referred to some part of India and stated:
"The Indus Valley civilization is, according to Sir John Marshall, (Director-General of the Archaeological Survey of India from 1902 to 1928) who was in charge of the excavations, the oldest of all civilizations unearthed (circa 7000 B.C.E). It is older than the Sumerian and it is believed by many that the latter was a branch of the former."
Evidence of religious practices from the Indus Valley come in the form of a specific Indus Valley seal that shows snakes in an upright position guarding a deity, who appears to be in a yogic position. This seal would seem to indicate that Hinduism existed before the Vedic period. It also strongly suggests that the Cobra is indigenous to India and not Egypt.
Col. Henry Steel Olcott, a former president of the Theosophical Society said:
"By the pictorial hieroglyphic inscription found on the walls of the temple of the Queen Haslitop (Hatshepsut) at Der-el-babri, we see that this Punt can be no other than India. It is testified by Herodotus, Plato, Salon, Pythagoras, and Philostratus that the religion of Egypt proceeded from India..."
Even the individual known as 'Flavius Josephus' states in the work 'Against Apion', in which he quotes Clearchus of Sparta's fragment:
"Jews are derived from the Indian philosophers; they are named by the Indian Calami, and by the Syrians Judaei, and took their name from the country they inhabit, which is called Judea."Ref - Book 1:22
The hieroglyphic inscriptions detail the rig and build of the small squadron of Egyptian ships, either leaving for Punt, or arriving at Punt. The inscription begins by saying:
"Sailing in the sea, beginning the goodly way towards God's Land, journeying in peace to the land of Punt, by the army of the Lord of the Two Lands." (Hatshepsut)
The inscriptions in the temple show the Egyptian envoy, Nehsi, landing in Punt, accompanied by an officer and eight heavily armed soldiers. He is standing in front of a pile of trade goods consisting of strings of beads, an axe, dagger, bracelets, and a wooden coffer. The chief of Punt stands on the other side of the trade goods, with a gesture of salutation. His name is Parihu or Perahu, his wife, originally stood behind him, is called Aty or Ati. The block which displayed her is now in the Cairo Museum (No.452, G 12, north), and also the block containing the little ass (donkey), carrying the load of the royal individuals (No.453).
Other details of the inscriptions concern the houses of Punt, built on piles beneath the trees, accessible by ladders, and cattle grazing. Another inscription describes the surprise of the Puntites at seeing the Egyptians:
"They say, as they pray for peace: Why have ye come hither unto this land?, which the people (of Egypt) knew not? Did ye come down upon the ways of heaven, or did ye sail upon the waters, upon the sea of God's Land? Have ye trodden the path of the Sun? Lo, as for the King of Egypt, is there no way to His Majesty, that we may live by the breadth which he gives?"
Other scenes show trade happening, ships being loaded, several dog headed apes squatting on the deck cargo, representatives of the Puntites making the voyage to see the wonders of Egypt, and sailors carrying incense trees. One inscription says that the ships are lading heavily with the marvels of the country of Punt. Another scene shows three ships sailing to Egypt: "sailing, arriving in peace, journeying to Thebes with joy of heart." The stiffening of the ships depicted, resembles that of St. Paul's ship.
Queen Hatshepsut established the trade networks that were disrupted during the occupation of Egypt by the Hyksos during the Second Intermediate Period, by doing this, Hatshepsut was able to build the wealth of the eighteenth dynasty. Overseeing the preparations and funding for a mission to the Land of Punt, the expedition set out in her name with five ships, each measuring 70 feet (21 m) long bearing several sails and accommodating 210 men that included sailors and 30 rowers. Many trade goods were brought back from Punt, notably myrrh.
An essay titled 'Aryans and Tamilians', by Swami Vivekananda, an Indian Hindu monk of the aristocratic Bengali Kayastha family of Calcutta, refers to the earliest ethnic connections between the original Indians, the Tamilians or Dravidians, and the Akkado-Sumerian and Egyptian races. He was of the view that the land of Punt represented Malabar.
In that essay, Swami states:
"We are glad also that he (here he is referring to the work of Pandit Savariroyan) boldly pushes forward the Accado-Sumerian racial identity of the ancient Tamilians. And this makes us proud of the blood of the great civilization which flowered before all others -compared to whose antiquity the Aryans and Semites are babies. We would suggest, also, that the Land of Punt of the Egyptians was not only Malabar, but that the Egyptians as a race bodily migrated from Malabar across the ocean and entered the delta along the course of the Nile from north (Alexandria) to south, to which Punt they have been always fondly looking back as the home of the blessed."
Ref - The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda. p.1511. 2020; Malabar is a region of the southwestern shoreline of the mainland Indian subcontinent.
In the National Geographic Magazine, August 1974 issue, p.172, it explains that scholars have established King Solomon's 'Ships of Tarshish (Tarsus)' (1 Book of Kings. Old Testament, 10:23) carrying spices, gold, cedar woods, apes, and peacock coming from distant Ophir or Punt.
Also, in 'The Ancient History of the Near East', Dr. Henry Reginald Holland Hall MBE states:
"The land of 'Punt' has been identified as India and Persia. Here a special note comes from Margaret A. Murray, (an Anglo-Indian Egyptologist and archaeologist), from her detailed research book titled "The Splendor that was Egypt', page 222, in Appendix I, Sidgwick and Jackson."
Paul William Roberts, who taught literature at Oxford University and spent twenty years journeying through India, states in his book 'Empire of the Soul: Some Journeys in India:
"Recent research and scholarship make it increasingly possible to believe that the Vedic era was the lost civilization whose legacy the Egyptians and the Indians inherited. There must have been one. There are too many similarities between hieroglyphic texts and Vedic ones, these in turn echoed in somewhat diluted form and a confused fashion by the authors of Babylonian texts and the Old Testament." - The Vedic era is the period in the late Bronze Age and Early Iron Age of the history of India.
Sir Williams Jones, an Anglo-Welsh philologist and scholar of ancient India also provides evidence. In a dissertation by him on Egypt (Asiatic Researches - volume I), he writes that the Skandha Purana, a genre of eighteen Hindu religious texts, states that Egypt was known as Sancha-Dvipa, dvīpa, the term for the major divisions of the terrestrial sphere, sometimes translated as "continents". It seems at Alexandria, in Egypt, Indian scholars were a common sight, as they are mentioned by 'Chrysostomus' (100 CE) and by 'Clement' (200 CE).
Sir Williams Jones also states:
"Ethiopia and Hindustan were possessed or colonized by the same extraordinary race."
Ethiopia was colonized by the Hindus, as is universally admitted now.
Louis Jacolliot, a French barrister, colonial judge, author and lecturer, has stated in his 'Bible in India: Hindoo Origin of Hebrew and Christian Revelation, page 60-67 and 125, that:
"Egypt received from India, by Manes or Manu, its social institutions and laws, which resulted in division of the people into four castes, and placing the priest in the first rank; in the second, kings; then traders and artisans; and last in the social scale, the proletaire – the menial almost a slave."
"Manu – Manes – Minos – Moses - a philosopher gives political and religious institutions to India and is named Manu. The Egyptian legislator receives the name of Manes. A Cretan visits Egypt to study the institutions with which he desired to endow his country, and history preserves his memory under the name of Minos. Lastly, the liberation of the servile caste of Hebrews founds a new society and is named Moses.
The above four names overshadow the entire ancient world, they appear at the cradles of four different peoples to play the same role. Let us beware, the times of Brahminism, of Sacerdotalism, of Levitism, in India, in Egypt, in Judes, presents nothing to compare with the flames of Inquisition, the Vandois massacres, or St. Bartholomew’s resound with Te Deum (a Latin Christian hymn) of exultation (rejoicing)."
Further evidences comes in the form of statements by -
Friedrich Max Müller, one of the founders of the western academic disciplines of Indian studies. He also observed that the mythology of Egyptians is founded on Vedic traditions.
'Eusebius', also recorded that the early Ethiopians emigrated from the river Indus and first settled in the vicinity of Egypt.
Heinrich Karl Brugsch, a German Egyptologist and director of the School of Egyptology at Cairo, writes in his 'History of Egypt':
"According to their own records the Egyptians came from a mysterious land (now known to lie on the shores of the Indian Ocean)."
"we have a right to more than suspect that India, eight thousand years ago, sent a colony of emigrants who carried their arts and high civilization into what is now known as Egypt."
Arnold Hermann Ludwig Heeren (1760-1842), an Egyptologist, has observed:
"It is perfectly agreeable to Hindu manners that colonies from India, i.e., Banian families should have passed over Africa, and carried with them their industry, and perhaps also their religious worship. Whatever weight may be attached to Indian tradition and the express testimony of 'Eusebius' confirming the report of migrations from the banks of the Indus into Egypt, there is certainly nothing improbable in the event itself, as a desire of gain would have formed a sufficient inducement." (Historical Researches – Heeran).
Philostratus introduces the Brahman Iarchus by stating to his auditor that the Ethiopians were originally an Indian race compelled to leave India for the impurity contracted by slaying a certain monarch to whom they owed allegiance.
Interestingly, it is stated that the Egyptian ruler Ptolemy IV, Philopator, lined a part of his yacht with Indian stones. The presence of Indians in Egypt in the third century BC has been attested by Athenaeus who observes that the processions of Ptolemy II Philadelphus also included women, cows, and hunting dogs from India.
The Navabharata Times (18th April 1967) says that excavations of an Egyptian Pyramid (3000 B.C.E) revealed a famous verse from Bhagavad Gita (2.22), a 701-verse Hindu scripture, that is part of the epic of Mahabharata, and dates to the second century B.C.E: Vasamsi jirnani yatha vhiaya, meaning: "As a person puts on new garments, giving up old ones, the soul similarly accepts new material bodies, giving up the old and useless ones." The Vedic incarnation of Vishnu as a dwarf, who claimed the whole universe by his three mighty strides, was also evident in the Egyptian worship of the 'misshapen dwarf Bes'; the Egyptian Memphian Ptah is depicted as a mummy or as a dwarf.
Left - Indian Yaksha (dwarf) image discovered in cave 2nd century B.C.E Right - Egyptian Bes, depicted as a deformed dwarf. 3rd century B.C.E. Ref- India and Egypt, edited by Saryu Doshi, p.70-71
The Origin Of The Name Paul
There is an understanding that the origin of the name 'Paul', as in 'St. Paul', is the English (Anglicised) form of the Latin Paulus, from the Jewish name Saul, let us investigate.
Both 'Saul' of the Old Testament and 'Saul/Paul' of the New Testament were Benjamites, or sons of Gemini (1st Samuel IX., 1; Judges III., 15; Judges, XIX., 16). The Gemini were the twin sons of Jupiter (Greek Zeus) with Leda; Zeus/Jupiter had taken the form of a swan. 'Saul' was busy helping to put down the new Christian or Sun worship by haling men and women to prison. Sun worship is a masculine religion, whereas the Hebrews were originally, as Arabians, worshipers of the night sky, with the moon as queen of heaven (reference the work of Ignaz Goldziher, a Hungarian scholar of Islam), and they were very happy (Jeremiah XLIV). Their time, feasts, sabbaths, and years were all regulated by the female moon.
In four texts there are two phrases repeated: Judges III., 15; Judges XIX., 1-30; Judges XX., 15-16; 1st Samuel IX., 1- where the Benjamites are declared to be sons of Gemini or Jemini, and so, to be of the left hand cult, meaning worshipers of the female, particularly emphasized in Judges III. That means 'Saul' of the old Benjamites, and the New Testament 'Saul', the new Benjamite or left-hand persecutor of the right-hand cult, are linked together. The new 'Saul' in the New Testament is a persecutor of the new Sun worshipers, and his name (now in Greek) means 'effeminate,' or 'feminine', so he is like his namesake in the Old Testament, and an adorer of the Muliebre Pudendum Yoni, woman, or Queen of Heaven.
When 'Saul' is on his mission to persecute the Sun worshipers, the sun himself ("a bright light") shines so strongly on 'Saul' as to blind him, and calls out (in the person of 'Jesus'), "Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?" (Exodus XXIV., 17 and 10). Taken blind to Damascus, a Christian disciple is sent by Kurios, the Sun (disguised by the word 'Lord' in the English version of the New Testament) to cure him in the name of Jesus. We then have several chapters of Acts, X., XI., and XII., devoted to Peter, the Rock, and 'Saul' is apparently forgotten. Then suddenly, in Acts XIII, we have:
“Then Saul (who is also called Paul)"
So the left-hand cult and name are finally abandoned, and "Paul," a form of the Indian Pal, which derives from Pala, became his name. So just like Jacob, who changed Luz to Bethel (Genesis XXVIII.,19), the name 'Saul' changes from the left-hand or feminine cult to that of the right-hand or masculine cult.
The Name Pal
The Latin alphabet did not evolve directly from Egyptian hieroglyphs. Like the Greek alphabet, Latin was adapted from Phoenician writing. The Greeks adapted the Phoenician writing system sometime in the eighth century B.C.E. (800-701 B.C.E.) and spread it along trade routes to Italy, where it was adapted by the Etruscans and the Latins in the seventh century B.C.E.
The Vedic form of Sanskrit, however, is assumed to have been be composed approximately 1500 B.C.E., and claims say it has an Oral tradition of 2500-3000 years. Sanskrit has an literary history of around 4000 years. Pal (Paul) a common and prevalent surname in Bengal (Bangladesh) and India, with approximately 577,534 people bearing it, is traditionally believed to have originated from the Sanskrit pala, meaning protector or keeper (which is what the phallus symbolized). Ref - Tej Ram Sharma, 'Personal and Geographical Names in the Gupta Empire', p.115, and Ronald B Inden, 'Marriage and Rank in Bengali Culture: A History of Caste and Clan in Middle Period Bengal',University of California Press, p.40.
Tej Ram Sharma is a Professor in the Department of History and Coordinator of Department of History, University of Hyderabad. He has won acclaim from scholars for his earlier works and prestigious awards from the International Academic Community.
Ronald Inden is an American Indologist and professor emeritus in the Departments of History and of South Asian Languages and Civilizations at the University of Chicago. He is also a major scholar in South Asian and post-colonial studies.
So, from the Sanskrit Pala, comes the Indian surname Pal (Paul), then various forms of the name/word emerge, including Saul (Egyptian Hebrew), Paulos (Greek), and Paulus or Paullus (Latin). Pal is of ancient origin, and its two roots are: 1) Pal "to cleave", and 2) Pal to 'fill': in Aryan 'pal' and 'plu' is 'fill',: in Hebrew bul 'produce,' or 'swelling'.
In Akkadian, written in cuneiform, with two dialects, Assyrian and Babylonian, widely used from about 3500 B.C.E, Pal stands for the Yoni or Kteis, Yoni being a Sanskrit word that has been interpreted to literally mean 'the womb'. Ref - James G. Lochtefeld, Professor of Religion at Carthage College, specializing in Hindu pilgrimage, 'The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Volume 2, p.784, and Shrirama and Indra Deva, 'Correspondence between Woman and Nature in Indian Thought. Philosophy East and West', Volume 16 (¾), p.161–168.
Shrirama was a University Professor and Dean of Faculty of Social Sciences, Pt. Ravishankar Shukla University, Raipur. Indra Deva was Professor Emeritus at Ravishankar University, Raipur.
According to Professor David Leeming, who is considered a leading authority on the comparative literature of mythology, his 'A Dictionary of Asian Mythology',Oxford University Press. p. 205, the Yoni worship tradition dates to the pre-Vedic period, over the 4000 B.C.E to 1000 B.C.E time-frame.
But from the root meaning of the Akkadian Pal, meaning 'to bud', come Phala, meaning 'fruit' in Sanskrit, 'Phulla', meaning 'leaf' in Greek, and in English, 'flow,' and 'flower.' The western understanding of the word 'Phallism' is created through Greek and Latin, but its origin comes from the Hindu 'Pala' or 'Phala,' which becomes, in other countries, Pal, Pel, Pil, Phil, Poll, Paul, Pul (Old Testament), Phallus, and Phulus. L and R, as well as U and Y can replace each other, meaning Pul becomes Pur, Pyr, Phara, etc., which all mean Pole, Pillar, Rod, or Stem, the erect or strong thing, in short, the male creative organ. So from Pala/Phallos we get Pal, and from Pal we get Paul.
To quote John G. R. Forlong, a Major General of the Indian Army:
"The representation of the phallus in hieroglyphic systems of the Egyptians, Akkadians, and Hittites is very clear, and is always connected with words that signify a 'male'." Ref - 'Encyclopedia of Religions', Vol III, p. 64.
Shiva, the most widely worshipped and edified male deity in the Hindu pantheon, is worshiped much more commonly in the form of the lingam, or the phallus. The Indian word 'lingam' or 'linga' is widely used as a place name all over the East, but the religious name in India is 'Pala'. Evidence of the lingam in India dates back to prehistoric times. Stone Lingams with several varieties of stylized "heads", or the glans, are found to this date in many of the old temples, and in museums in India and abroad.
To again quote Major General John G. R. Forlong, this time from his book 'Rivers of Life', Volume 2, p.65:
"The Assyrians called an Ark temple of the Sun, 'Bet-Para', and because R is the same as L, the feminine Sun is Pala (Parah is a hole, pit, heifer, which brings forth, and is, therefore, the feminine of Pal.) Pal, P’Al or P’Ale is the Phallus, “the plougher or divider” and “distinguished one,” and the reason why Pal is a name of Assyrian monarchs, and is why Josephus (Antiquities, VIII., vi. 2) and Jewish scribes of the Old Testament (5th century B.C.E.) say the Pharaoh signified a king in Egyptian, which no Egyptologist can confirm.""The Hebrew word is Paroh (P and PH are seen as the same), Prince or Leader, and the Koptic Pouro, meaning 'the king'."
The title of the kings of Egypt is a double sex name originating from the male Pala of India combined with the female ring or oval O. The name, therefore, should be Phala-O, or Phala-Oh, and not Phara-oh, as we know it.
In Hebrew, the letters no longer revealed their hidden phallic or sex organ meanings. These letters were H, the 'breath of life' letter, or 'aspirate', I, the 'pillar', used as a phallic symbol representing the male organ, and O, the 'almond', or the 'Ring' of the Persian legend (modern day Iran), Yima, the “earthly Creator” and and son of the sun.
The Old Testament has men whose names represent the phallus, such as Palu, Pallu, or Phallu, with the spelling variations being Pala and Phallus, and also has the left-hand phallic cult of Salu. So Salu and Palu are forerunners of Saul and Paul (Genesis XLVI., 9; Exodus VI., 14; Numbers XXV., 14; Numbers XXVI., 5-8). There is another connection in Sur or Sar, the "Rock that begat thee" (Numbers XXV., 15), also written as 'Sul', meaning we have Sul and Pul, phallic King of Assyria, as mentioned in 2nd Kings XV., 19.
I feel that the Egyptians traveled to different parts of India, and considered the whole of the country the 'Land of the Gods'. Clearly there is evidence of contact between India and Egypt from around 3000 B.C.E. with the findings of Indian muslin, cotton and coriander in Egypt. After about the third century B.C.E., during the time of Ptolemy Euergetes, an Indian sailor was found shipwrecked on the coast of the Red Sea. He was taken to Alexandria, and, in exchange for hospitality, he showed the Ptolemy's men a direct sea route to India across the Indian Ocean.
During the Indian Emperor Ashoka's reign, ambassadors were exchanged and contact continued until Egypt came under Roman Law. After a short break, the journeys between the two locations were resumed. Trade was the primary reason for the travel, but many ideas were exchanged that influenced each other's art and iconography.
The use of the Indian names for merchandise brought back from a sea voyage, as recorded in the Jewish chronicles, when there was a voyage to the East in the time of Solomon, around 800 B.C.E., strongly points to their Indian origin. The word 'sindhu', found in the library of Ashurbanipal, king of the Neo-Assyrian Empire, is used in the sense of Indian cotton, and the Hebrew karpas is derived from the Sanskrit karpasa.
The Boghazkoi inscriptions of the 14th century B.C.E., which are treaties between the Hittite and the Mitanni Kings, contain the names of such deities as Mitra, Varuna, Indra etc., names that indicate a very close contact between India and Western Asia before the 14th century B.C.E.
In regards to yogic practices in the West, Professor Sir William Matthew Flinders Petrie, a British archaeologist and Egyptologist, and author of 'Egypt and Israel' (1911) observes:
"The presence of a large body of Indian troops in the Persian army in Greece in 480 BC shows how far west the Indian connections were carried; and the discovery of modeled heads of Indians at Memphis, of about the fifth century BC shows that Indians were living there for trade."
He felt that under the Indian influence, the doctrine of rebirth was accepted in Egypt.
Friedrich Wilhelm Freiherr von Bissing (1873-1956) wrote:
"The land of Punt in the Egyptian ethnological traditions has been identified by the scholars with the Malabar coast of Deccan. From this land ebony, and other rich woods, incense, balsam, precious metals, etc., used to be imported into Egypt." (Ref - 'Prehistoricsche Topfen aus Indien and Aegypten').
The Mauryan Emperor Ashoka's thirteenth rock edict provides clear evidence of India's direct relations with Egypt. In the early decades of the third century B.C.E., Emperor Ashoka refers to his contacts with Ptolemy II Philadelphus of Egypt (285-246 B.C.E.), in connection with the expansion of his policy of the propagation of the Law (dharma). In his thirteenth inscription, Ashokan records Ptolemy II as 'Turamaya', so official embassies were undoubtedly exchanged between the Mauryan court and that of Ptolemy II. Pliny the Elder, uncle of Pliny the Younger, in his 'Natural History', Chapter 12, names the Egyptian ambassador of Ptolemy II to India as Dionysius, and in his second rock edict, Ashoka refers to the philanthropic activities undertaken by himself. He records that he had made arrangements for the medical treatment of men and animals in the territories of his own empire, as well as in the region ruled by Antiochus Theos II of Syria (260-246 B.C.E.) and its neighboring kingdoms, which also included Egypt.