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[[File: Gandhara, testa di buddha, I-III sec.jpg|200px|thumb|left| An example of Greco-Buddhist sculpture]]
==The Greeks in India==
There are several Indian sources that indicate that Alexander left a large number of Greek colonists in his newly acquired territories, who are referred to as Yavanas. It appears that there were a large number of Greek settlements in India. They continued to speak Greek and remained a distinct ethnic group in Northern India. The great Buddhist Emperor Asoka issued edicts in Greek
<ref>. It is also believed that many Greeks were active in the government of this great Emperor. The descendants of the colonists transplanted by Alexander into India continued to flourish for many years. In 180 BC an army of Greeks returned to India, these were the descendants of the colonies established in Bactria. The Mauryan Empire fell after the death of Asoka and his left a power vacuum in north-west India. A powerful Greek Bactrian king Demeter 1 conquered a large area of Afghanistan <ref>Singh, Upinder A History of Ancient and Early Medieval India: From the Stone Age to the 12th Century. Pearson Education India, 2008), p 118</ref>. Later kings ruled parts of the Punjab and Gujarat in the second century AD. The greatest Indo-Greco king was Meander I who ruled a large kingdom in what is now Pakistan and the Indian Punjab. After his death little is known about the Indo-Greek kingdoms, the last known was that located in eastern Punjab, that was ruled by a monarch called Strato I (10 BC). However, there were some small Indian Greek statelets that endured in remote areas until the 1st century AD. Alexander’s invasion had resulted, directly and indirectly in the establishment of a Greek presence in North-West India for over 300 years.
[[File: Menander portrait.jpg|200px|thumb|left| A portrait of Meander I Soter c 160 AD]]