Bīrūnī, Muḥammad ibn Aḥmad, Alberuni's India (v. 1)

(London :  Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co.,  1910.)



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96                          ALBERUNPS INDIA.

prescribes that it should be Cretan, because the mytho-
logists relate that Zeus was born on the mountain
Page 47. Alktolov in Creta, where his mother concealed him
from his father Kronos, that he should not devour him
as he had devoured others."

Besides, well-known story-books tell that he married
certain women one after the other, cohabited with
others, doing violence to them and not marrying them ;
among them Europa, the daughter of Phoenix, who was
taken from him by Asterios, king of Crete. After¬
wards she gave birth to two children from him, Minos
and Rhadamanthus. This happened long before the
Israelites left the desert and entered Palestine.

Another tradition is that he died in Crete, and was
buried there at the time of Samson the Israelite, being
780 years of age ; that he was called Zeus when he had
become old, after he had formerly been called Dios; and
that the first who gave him this name was Cecrops, the
first king of Athens. It was common to all of them
to indulge in their lusts without any restraint, and to
favour the business of the pander; and so far they were
not unlike Zoroaster and King Gushtasp when they
desired to consolidate the realm and the rule (sic).

Chroniclers maintain that Cecrops and his successors
are the source of all the vices among the Athenians,
meaning thereby such things as occur in the story of
Alexander, viz. that Nectanebus, king of Egypt, after
having fled before Artaxerxes the Black and hiding in
the capital of Macedonia, occupied himself with astro¬
logy and soothsaying; that he beguiled Olympias, the
wife of King Philip, who was absent. He cunningly
contrived to cohabit with her, showing himself to her
in the figure of the god Ammon, as a serpent with two
heads like rams' heads. So she became pregnant with
Alexander. Philip, on returning, was about to disclaim
the paternity, but then he dreamt that it was the child
of the god Ammon.   Thereupon he recognised the child
  Page 96