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MEGASTHENES° (c. 350–290 B.C.E.), ambassador of Seleucus Nicator at the court of the Indian king, Chandragupta. Megasthenes wrote a work on India idealizing the Indians. He apparently included in this work idealized descriptions of the Jews, whom he probably knew firsthand while at the court of Seleucus, to judge from his statement that both the Jews and Brahmans had already taught everything concerning nature that was taught by the ancient Greek philosophers.

Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2007 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.