Hippostratos (Greek: Ἱππόστρατος) was an Indo-Greek king who ruled central and north-western Punjab and Pushkalavati. Bopearachchi dates Hippostratos to 65 to 55 BCE whereas R. C. Senior suggests 60 to 50 BCE.
Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages, native to Greece, Cyprus and other parts of the Eastern Mediterranean and the Black Sea. It has the longest documented history of any living Indo-European language, spanning more than 3000 years of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the major part of its history; other systems, such as Linear B and the Cypriot syllabary, were used previously. The alphabet arose from the Phoenician script and was in turn the basis of the Latin, Cyrillic, Armenian, Coptic, Gothic, and many other writing systems.
Pushkalavati was the capital of the Gandhara kingdom. Its ruins are located on the outskirts of the modern city of Charsadda, in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. Its ruins are located on the banks of Swat River, near its junction with Kabul River. Pushkalavati was the capital of the ancient Gandhara kingdom before the 6th century BCE, when it became an Achaemenid regional capital, and it remained an important city until the 2nd century CE.
In Bopearachchi's reconstruction Hippostratos came to power as the successor to Apollodotus II, in the western part of his kingdom, while the weak Dionysios ascended to the throne in the eastern part. Senior assumes that the reigns of Apollodotus II and Hippostratos overlapped somewhat; in that case Hippostratos first ruled a kingdom situated to the west of Apollodotus' dominions.
Apollodotus II was an Indo-Greek king who ruled in the western and eastern parts of Punjab. Bopearachchi dates him to c. 80–65 BCE, and R. C. Senior to c. 85–65 BCE. Apollodotos II was an important ruler who seems to have re-established the Indo-Greek kingdom to some extent of its former glory. Taxila in western Punjab was reconquered from nomad Scythian rule.
Just like Apollodotus II, Hippostratos calls himself Soter, "Saviour", on all his coins, and on some coins he also assumes the title Basileos Megas, "Great King", which he inherited from Apollodotus II. This may support Senior's scenario that Hippostratos extended his kingdom after Apollodotus' death. The relationship between these two kings remains uncertain due to lack of sources. Hippostratos did not, however, use the symbol of standing Athena Alkidemos, which was common to all other kings thought to be related to Apollodotus II. The two kings share only one monogram.
The quantity and quality of the coinage of Hippostratos indicate a quite powerful king. Hippostratos seems to have fought rather successfully against the Indo-Scythian invaders, led by the Scythian king Azes I, but was ultimately defeated and became the last western Indo-Greek king.
Azes I was an Indo-Scythian ruler who completed the domination of the Scythians in Gandhara.
Hippostratos issued silver coins with a diademed portrait on the obverse, and three reverses. The first is the image of a king on prancing horse, a common type which was most frequently used by the earlier kings Antimachus II and Philoxenus. The second reverse also portrays a king on horseback, but the horse is walking and the king making a benediction gesture - this type resembles a rare type of Apollodotus II. The third is a standing goddess, perhaps Tyche.
Antimachus II Nikephoros was an Indo-Greek king. He ruled a vast territory from the Hindu-Kush to the Punjab around 170 BCE. He was almost certainly the eponymous son of Antimachus I, who is known from a unique preserved tax receipt. Bopearachchi dated Antimachus II to 160–155 BCE on numismatical grounds, but changed this to 174–165 BCE after the tax receipt was revealed to synchronise his reign with that of Antimachus I. R. C. Senior has not dated Antimachus II but thinks that his coins were possibly Indian issues of Antimachus I, despite their different epithets and coin types.
Fortuna was the goddess of fortune and the personification of luck in Roman religion. Fortuna is often depicted with a gubernaculum, a ball or Rota Fortunae and a cornucopia. She might bring good or bad luck: she could be represented as veiled and blind, as in modern depictions of Lady Justice, except that Fortuna does not hold a balance. Fortuna came to represent life's capriciousness. She was also a goddess of fate: as Atrox Fortuna, she claimed the young lives of the princeps Augustus' grandsons Gaius and Lucius, prospective heirs to the Empire.
Hippostratos struck several bronzes of types used by several kings: Serpent-legged deity (as used by Telephus) / standing goddess. Apollo/tripod (Apollodotus II, several earlier kings) Sitting Zeus-Mithras / horse, reminiscent of coins of Hermaeus.
Hermaeus Soter or Hermaios Soter was a Western Indo-Greek king of the Eucratid Dynasty, who ruled the territory of Paropamisade in the Hindu-Kush region, with his capital in Alexandria of the Caucasus. Bopearachchi dates Hermaeus to c. 90–70 BCE and R. C. Senior to c. 95–80 BCE.
Tyche was the presiding tutelary deity who governed the fortune and prosperity of a city, its destiny. In Classical Greek mythology, she is the daughter of Aphrodite and Zeus or Hermes.
Zeus is the sky and thunder god in ancient Greek religion, who rules as king of the gods of Mount Olympus. His name is cognate with the first element of his Roman equivalent Jupiter. His mythologies and powers are similar, though not identical, to those of Indo-European deities such as Jupiter, Perkūnas, Perun, Indra and Thor.
Mitra is the name of an Indo-Iranian divinity from which the names and some characteristics of Rigvedic Mitrá and Avestan Mithra derive.
Azes I overstruck several of Hippostratos' coins.
| Greco-Bactrian and Indo-Greek kings, territories and chronology|
Based on Bopearachchi (1991)
|Greco-Bactrian kings||Indo-Greek kings|
|West Bactria||East Bactria|| Paropamisade ||Arachosia||Gandhara||Western Punjab||Eastern Punjab||Mathura|
|326-325 BCE||Campaigns of Alexander the Great in India||Nanda Empire|
|312 BCE||Creation of the Seleucid Empire||Creation of the Maurya Empire|
|305 BCE||Seleucid Empire after Mauryan war||Maurya Empire|
|280 BCE||Foundation of Ai-Khanoum|
|255–239 BCE||Independence of the|
|Emperor Ashoka (268-232)|
|239–223 BCE||Diodotus II|
|230–200 BCE||Euthydemus I|
|200–190 BCE||Demetrius I||Sunga Empire|
|190-185 BCE||Euthydemus II|
|185–170 BCE||Antimachus I|
|180–160 BCE||Apollodotus I|
|175–170 BCE||Demetrius II|
|160–155 BCE||Antimachus II|
|170–145 BCE||Eucratides I|
|155–130 BCE|| Yuezhi occupation,|
loss of Ai-Khanoum
| Eucratides II |
|130–120 BCE||Yuezhi occupation||Zoilos I||Agathokleia|| Yavanarajya|
|120–110 BCE||Lysias||Strato I|
|110–100 BCE||Antialcidas||Heliokles II|
|100 BCE||Polyxenos||Demetrius III|
|90–85 BCE||Nicias||Menander II||Artemidoros|
|Yuezhi occupation||Maues (Indo-Scythian)|
|75–70 BCE||Vonones||Telephos||Apollodotus II|
|55–35 BCE||Azes I (Indo-Scythians)||Zoilos II|
|55–35 BCE||Vijayamitra/ Azilises||Apollophanes|
|25 BCE – 10 CE||Gondophares||Zeionises||Kharahostes|| Strato II |
|Gondophares (Indo-Parthian)||Rajuvula (Indo-Scythian)|
|Kujula Kadphises (Kushan Empire)|| Bhadayasa |
| Sodasa |
Philoxenus Anicetus was an Indo-Greek king who ruled in the region spanning the Paropamisade to Punjab. Philoxenus seems to have been quite an important king who might briefly have ruled most of the Indo-Greek territory. Bopearachchi dates Philoxenus to c. 100–95 BCE and R. C. Senior to c. 125–110 BCE.
Nicias was an Indo-Greek king who ruled in the Paropamisade. Most of his relatively few coins have been found in northern Pakistan, indicating that he ruled a smaller principate around the lower Kabul valley. He was possibly a relative of Menander I.
Artemidoros Aniketos was a king who ruled in the area of Gandhara and Pushkalavati in modern northern Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Menander II Dikaios was an Indo-Greek King who ruled in the areas of Arachosia and Gandhara in the north of modern Pakistan.
Zoilos II Soter was an Indo-Greek king who ruled in eastern Punjab. Bopearachchi dates his reign to c. 55–35 BCE, a date approximately supported by R. C. Senior. The name is often Latinized as Zoilus. It is possible that some of his coins were issued by a separate king, Zoilos III.
Dionysios Soter was an Indo-Greek king in the area of eastern Punjab.
Apollophanes Soter was an Indo-Greek king in the area of eastern and central Punjab in modern India and Pakistan.
Peucolaus Soter Dikaios was an Indo-Greek king who ruled in the area of Gandhara c. 90 BCE. His reign was probably short and insignificant, since he left only a few coins, but the relations of the latter Indo-Greek kings remain largely obscure.
Strato II "Soter" was an Indo-Greek king. He ruled c. 25 BCE to 10 CE according to Bopearachchi. R. C. Senior suggests that his reign ended perhaps a decade earlier. He may have been supplanted by the Indo-Scythian Northern Satraps, particularly Rajuvula and Bhadayasa, whose coins were often copied on those of the last Indo-Greek kings. Numerous coins of Rajuvula have been found in company with the coins of the Strato group in the Eastern Punjab and also in the Mathura area: for example, 96 coins of Strato II were found in Mathura in conjunction with coins of Rajuvula, who also imitated the designs of Strato II in the majority of his issues.
Heliocles II Dikaios is thought to have been one of the later Indo-Greek kings and a relative of the Bactrian king Heliocles I. Bopearachchi and R. C. Senior seem to agree that he ruled ca 95–80 BCE.
Amyntas Nikator was an Indo-Greek king. His coins have been found both in eastern Punjab and Afghanistan, indicating that he ruled a considerable territory.
Telephos Euergetes was a late Indo-Greek king who seems to have been one of the weak and brief successors of Maues. Bopearachchi dates Telephos between 75–70 BCE and places him in Gandhara, Senior to c. 60 BCE and suggests that he ruled in some parts of Pushkalavati or even further west.
The Bimaran casket or Bimaran reliquary is a small gold reliquary for Buddhist relics that was found inside the stupa no.2 at Bimaran, near Jalalabad in eastern Afghanistan.
Within the Indo-Greek Kingdom there were over 30 kings, often in competition on different territories. Many of them are only known through their coins.
The History of the Indo-Greek Kingdom covers a period from the 2nd century BCE to the beginning of the 1st century CE in northern and northwestern India. There were over 30 Indo-Greek kings, often in competition on different territories. Many of them are only known through their coins.
Strato III often called "Philopator" was an Indo-Greek king who ruled c. 25 BCE to 10 CE. He is only known through the joint coins with his father Strato II. He may have been supplanted, in conjunction with his father or later as an independent king, by the Indo-Scythian Northern Satraps, particularly Rajuvula and Bhadayasa, whose coins were often copied on those of the last Indo-Greek kings.
| Indo-Greek Ruler |
(in Western Punjab)
65 – 55 BCE
| Succeeded by|
(as Indo-Scythian King)