The history of Mount Abu is wrapped in legends. According to local people, Mount Abu derives its name from Mount ArbudMount Abu when the minor son of Himalayas, together with the assistance of a snake called Arbud flooded the gorge in the area with water to rescue the revered bull of Shiva. On a more contemporary note, the history of Mount Abu indicates that it was once under the rule of the Chauhan dynasty and later served as a summer residence for the king. The British too favoured this region and made it their improvised escape from the heat and dust of Rajasthan. In the Puranas the region was referred to as Arbudaranya, ("forest of Arbhu") and 'Abu' is a diminutive of this ancient name. It is believed that the sage Vasistha withdrew southern spur to Mount Abu after following its differences with sage Vishvamitra.