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Chandragupta Maurya
Mauryan Emperor
ChandraguptaStamp.jpg
Indian postage stamp depicting Chandragupta Maurya
Reign 322 BCE-298 BCE
Born 340 BCE
Birthplace Magadha
Died 298 BCE (aged 42)
Place of death Shravanabelagola, Karnataka
Predecessor Dhana
Successor Bindusara
Consort Durdhara
Royal House Mauryan dynasty
Mother Mura
Religious beliefs Vedic Hindu, Jain

Chandragupta Maurya (Sanskrit: चन्द्रगुप्त मौर्य), sometimes known simply as Chandragupta (born c. 340 BCE, ruled c. 320[1] – 298 BCE[2], died about 298 BCE), was an Indian Emperor, the founder of the Maurya Empire and one of the most influential figures in the history of the ancient World. Chandragupta succeeded in bringing together most of the Indian subcontinent and is widely considered the first unifier of India and its first genuine emperor.[3] In Greek and Latin accounts, Chandragupta is known as Sandrokyptos (Σανδρόκυπτος), Sandrokottos (Σανδρόκοττος) or Androcottus.[4]

Prior to Chandragupta's consolidation of power, small regional kingdoms dominated the northwestern sub-continent, while the Nanda Dynasty dominated the Indo-Gangetic Plain.[5] After Chandragupta's conquests, the Maurya Empire extended from Bengal and Assam[6] in the east, to Afghanistan and Balochistan in the west, to Kashmir and Nepal[7] in the north, and to the Deccan Plateau in the south.[8]

His achievements, which ranged from conquering Alexander the Great's Macedonian satraps and the Nanda Empire by the time he was only 20 years old, to defeating Seleucus I Nicator and establishing centralized rule throughout South Asia, remain some of the most celebrated in the history of India. Over two thousand years later, the accomplishments of Chandragupta and his successors, including Ashoka the Great, are objects of great study in the annals of South Asian and world history.

Contents

Origins

While many Indian historians hold the view that Chandragupta was an illegitimate child of the Nanda Dynasty of Magadha in eastern India, born to a Nanda prince and a maid named "Mura",[9] later literary traditions imply that Chandragupta may have been raised by peacock-tamers (Sanskrit: Mayura-Poshaka), which earned him the Maurya epithet. Both the Buddhist as well as Jain traditions testify to the supposed connection between the Moriya (Maurya) and Mora or Mayura (Peacock).[10] Yet there are other literary traditions according to which Chandragupta belonged to Moriyas, a Kshatriya clan of a little ancient republic of Pippalivana located between Rummindei in the Nepali Terai and Kasia in the Gorakhpur district of Uttar Pradesh.

There are differing theories regarding Chandragupta Maurya’s origins. A common view is that Chandragupta originated from Magadha, possibly as the son of a Nanda prince and a maid named "Mura".[9][11] A kshatriya people known as the "Mauryas" who had received the relics of the Gautama Buddha are also mentioned in the Mahaparinibbana Sutta of the Digha Nikaya: "Then the Moriyas of Pipphalivana came to know that at Kusinara the Blessed One had died. And they sent a message to the Mallas of Kusinara, saying: "The Blessed One was of the warrior caste, and we are too. We are worthy to receive a portion of the relics of the Blessed One. We will erect a stupa over the relics of the Blessed One and hold a festival in their honor.

Others claim that the Mauryas were the Muras or rather Mors, and another view of a Jatt origin of Indo-Scythian lineage has been proposed.[12][13][14] Another school of thought, including scholars such as B. M. Barua,[15] J. W. McCrindle, D. B. Spooner,[16] H. C. Seth,[17] Hari Ram Gupta,[18] Ranajit Pal[19], Gur Rattan Pal Singh [20] and Kirpal Singh [21] have connected Chandragupta to Gandhara (or Kamboja) in modern day Pakistan. Based on interpretations of Plutarch and Appian's writings, these scholars assert that Chandragupta Maurya may have belonged to the north-west frontier region, possibly to the Assakenoi or Ashvaka (q.v.) Kshatriya clan of Swat/Kunar valley (modern Koh-I-Mor or Mer-coh — the Meros of the classical writings; probably Meru of Sanskrit texts and Mor and Mer in Prakritic)[22] [23][24]. It has been claimed by several scholars that Chandragupta belonged to the Ashvaka tribe of this region (known as Mor), and thus, the dynasty founded by him was called Moriya or Maurya.[25] [26] [27] [28] [29]. The Ashvakas were a section of the Kambojas, who were exclusively engaged in horse-culture and were noted for providing mercenary cavalry.[30][31] H.C. Raychaudhuri noted that the name Priyadarshi was adopted also by Chandragupta as also noted by W. W. Tarn[32].

According to Col. James Tod Chandragupta was a descendant of Puru dynasty:

Sandrocottus is mentioned by Arrian to be of this line ; and we can have no hesitation, therefore, in giving him a place in the dynasty of Puru, the second son of Yayati, whence the patronymic used by the race now extinct, as was Yadu, the elder brother of Puru.,

—, Annals and Antiquities of Rajasthan, By James Tod , pp 37[33]

Early life

Very little is known about Chandragupta's youth. Much of what is known about his youth is gathered from later classical Sanskrit literature, as well as classical Greek and Latin sources which refer to Chandragupta by the names "Sandracottos" or "Andracottus". He was paragon for next rulers.

According to traditional accounts, Chanakya, a teacher at Takshasila University at the time of Alexander's invasion, found the boy Chandragupta from the Magadha kingdom in eastern India. As the story goes, Chandragupta was playing as a king with his friends and was giving justice to another boy playing criminal. He also saw the kindness inside him to help others. Chanakya saw this and was impressed with Chandragupta's sense of justice. Chanakya asked his mother about him. His mother told him that his father used to work as a servant of the king Nand who ruled over the kingdom of Maghada and due to some fault he was sent into the prison. Chanakya told her to take him to the king and ask him to give some education to Chandragupta. Then she went to his court. There Chandragupta solved a problem for the king. The king was impressed and told his minister to join him in the best university at that time, The Vishvavidhyalay of Takshasila[often known as the Takshasila University][9]

Plutarch reports that he met with Alexander the Great, probably around Takshasila in the northwest, and that he viewed the ruling Nanda Empire in a negative light:

"Androcottus, when he was a stripling, saw Alexander himself, and we are told that he often said in later times that Alexander narrowly missed making himself master of the country, since its king was hated and despised on account of his baseness and low birth."

Plutarch, Parallel Lives: Life of Alexander 62.9

According to this tradition, the encounter would have happened around 326 BCE, suggesting a birth date for Chandragupta around 340 BC.

Junianus Justinus (Justin) describes the humble origins of Chandragupta, and explains how he later led a popular uprising against the Nanda king:

"He was of humble origin, but was pushing to acquiring the throne by the superior power of the mind. When after having offended the king of Nanda by his insolence, he was condemned to death by the king, he was saved by the speed of his own feet... He gathered bandits and invited Indians to a change of rule."

Junianus Justinus, Historiarum Philippicarum libri XLIV, XV.4.15

Foundation of the Maurya Empire

Silver punch mark coin of the Maurya empire, with symbols of wheel and elephant. 3rd century BC.

Chandragupta Maurya with the help of Chanakya defeated the Magadha kings and the bulk army of Chandravanshi clan and defeated generals of Alexander settled in Gandhara (Kamboja kingdom of Aryan Mahajanpad) which is called as Afghanistan now. At the time of Alexander's invasion, Chanakya was a teacher at Takshasila University. The king of Takshasila and Gandhara, Ambhi (also known as Taxiles), made a treaty with Alexander and did not fight against him. Chanakya saw the foreign invasion against the Indian culture and sought help from other kings to unite and fight Alexander. Porus (Parvateshwar), a king of Punjab, was the only local yadav king who was able to challenge Alexander at the Battle of the Hydaspes River, but was defeated.

Chanakya then went to Magadha further east to seek the help of Dhana Nanda, who ruled a vast Nanda Empire which extended from Bihar and Bengal in the east to eastern Punjab in the west,[34] but he denied any such help. After this incident, Chanakya began sowing the seeds of building an empire that could protect Indian territories from foreign invasion into his disciple Chandragupta.

Chandragupta later adopted Jainism. It is said he died fasting which was according to Jainism a holy way of sacrificing mortal life.

Chanakya

Chandragupta's adviser or prime minister[35] Chanakya, who is also known as Kautilya and was the author of the Arthashastra, is regarded as the architect of Chandragupta's early rise to power. Chandragupta Maurya, with the help of Chanakya, began laying the foundation of the Maurya Empire. In all forms of the Chanakya legend,[36] he is thrown out of the Nanda court by the king, whereupon he swears revenge. While in Magadha, Chanakya by chance met Chandragupta in whom he spotted great military and executive abilities. Chanakya was impressed by the prince's personality and intelligence, and immediately took the young boy under his wing to fulfill his silent vow.

Depending upon the interpretation of Justin's accounts, the second version of the above story is that Chandragupta had also accompanied Chanakya to Pataliputra and himself was insulted by Dhana Nanda (Nandrum of Justin). If this version of Justin's accounts is accepted, then the view that Chanakya had purchased Chandragupta from Bihar, on his way back to Taxila, becomes irrelevant. The shrewd Chanakya had trained Chandragupta under his expert guidance and together they planned the conquest of the Nanda Empire.

Nanda army

The Nanda Empire at its greatest extent under Dhana Nanda circa 323 BC.

According to Plutarch, at the time of Alexander's Battle of the Hydaspes River, the size of the Nanda Empire's army further east numbered 200,000 infantry, 80,000 cavalry, 8,000 chariots, and 6,000 war elephants, which was discouraging for Alexander's men and stayed their further progress into India:

"As for the Macedonians, however, their struggle with Porus blunted their courage and stayed their further advance into India. For having had all they could do to repulse an enemy who mustered only twenty thousand infantry and two thousand horse, they violently opposed Alexander when he insisted on crossing the river Ganges also, the width of which, as they learned, was •thirty-two furlongs, its depth •a hundred fathoms, while its banks on the further side were covered with multitudes of men-at‑arms and horsemen and elephants. For they were told that the kings of the Ganderites and Praesii were awaiting them with eighty thousand horsemen, two hundred thousand footmen, eight thousand chariots, and six thousand fighting elephants. And there was no boasting in these reports. For Androcottus, who reigned there not long afterwards, made a present to Seleucus of five hundred elephants, and with an army of six hundred thousand men overran and subdued all India."

Plutarch, Parallel Lives, "Life of Alexander" 62.1-4

In order to defeat the powerful Nanda army, Chandragupta needed to raise a formidable army of his own.[34]

Conquest of Macedonian territories in India

Chandragupta had defeated the remaining Macedonian satrapies in the northwest of the Indian subcontinent by 317 BC.

After Alexander's death in 323 BC, Chandragupta, turned his attention to Northwestern India (modern Pakistan), where he defeated the satrapies (described as "prefects" in classical Western sources) left in place by Alexander (according to Justin), and may have assassinated two of his governors, Nicanor and Philip.[3][34] The satrapies he fought may have included Eudemus, ruler in western Punjab until his departure in 317 BC; and Peithon, son of Agenor, ruler of the Greek colonies along the Indus until his departure for Babylon in 316 BC. The Roman historian Justin described how Sandrocottus (Greek version of Chandragupta's name) conquered the northwest:

"Some time after, as he was going to war with the generals of Alexander, a wild elephant of great bulk presented itself before him of its own accord, and, as if tamed down to gentleness,,11 took him on its back, and became his guide in the war, and conspicuous in fields of battle. Sandrocottus, having thus acquired a throne, was in possession of India, when Seleucus was laying the foundations of his future greatness; who, after making a league with him, and settling his affairs in the east, proceeded to join in the war against Antigonus. As soon as the forces, therefore, of all the confederates were united, a battle was fought,12 in which Antigonus was slain, and his son Demetrius put to flight. "

Junianus Justinus, Historiarum Philippicarum libri XLIV, XV.4.19

Having consolidated power in the northwest, Chandragupta pushed east towards the Nanda Empire.

Conquest of the Nanda Empire

Chandragupta's empire when he founded it circa 320 BC, by the time he was about 20 years old.

Chanakya had trained Chandragupta under his guidance and together they planned the destruction of Dhana Nanda. The Mudrarakshasa of Visakhadutta as well as the Jaina work Parisishtaparvan talk of Chandragupta's alliance with the Himalayan king Parvatka, sometimes identified with Porus.[37]

It is noted in the Chandraguptakatha that the protagonist and Chanakya were initially rebuffed by the Nanda forces. Regardless, in the ensuing war, Chandragupta faced off against Bhadrasala – commander of Dhana Nanda's armies. He was eventually able to defeat Bhadrasala and Dhana Nanda in a series of battles, ending with the siege of the capital city Kusumapura[34] and the conquest of the Nanda Empire around 321 BC,[34] thus founding the powerful Maurya Empire in Northern India by the time he was about 20 years old.

Expansion

By the time he was only about 20 years old, Chandragupta, who had succeeded in defeating the Macedonian satrapies in India and conquering the Nanda Empire, had founded a vast empire that extended from the Bay of Bengal in the east, to the Indus River in the west, which he would further expand in later years.

Conquest of Seleucus' eastern territories

Silver coin of Seleucus I Nicator, who fought Chandragupta Maurya, and later made an alliance with him.
Chandragupta extended the borders of his empire towards Seleucid Persia after his conflict with Seleucus circa 305 BC.

Seleucus I Nicator, a Macedonian satrap of Alexander, reconquered most of Alexander's former empire and put under his own authority eastern territories as far as Bactria and the Indus (Appian, History of Rome, The Syrian Wars 55), until in 305 BC he entered in a confrontation with Chandragupta:

"Always lying in wait for the neighboring nations, strong in arms and persuasive in council, he acquired Mesopotamia, Armenia, 'Seleucid' Cappadocia, Persis, Parthia, Bactria, Arabia, Tapouria, Sogdia, Arachosia, Hyrcania, and other adjacent peoples that had been subdued by Alexander, as far as the river Indus, so that the boundaries of his empire were the most extensive in Asia after that of Alexander. The whole region from Phrygia to the Indus was subject to Seleucus. He crossed the Indus and waged war with Sandrocottus [Maurya], king of the Indians, who dwelt on the banks of that stream, until they came to an understanding with each other and contracted a marriage relationship. Some of these exploits were performed before the death of Antigonus and some afterward."

Appian, History of Rome, The Syrian Wars 55

The exact details of engagement are not known. As noted by scholars such as R. C. Majumdar[9] and D. D. Kosambi, Seleucus appears to have fared poorly, having ceded large territories west of the Indus to Chandragupta. Due to his defeat, Seleucus surrendered Arachosia, Gedrosia, Paropamisadae, and Aria.

Mainstream scholarship asserts that Chandragupta received vast territory west of the Indus, including the Hindu Kush, modern day Afghanistan, and the Balochistan province of Pakistan.[38][39] Archaeologically, concrete indications of Mauryan rule, such as the inscriptions of the Edicts of Ashoka, are known as far as Kandhahar in southern Afghanistan.

"He (Seleucus) crossed the Indus and waged war with Sandrocottus [Maurya], king of the Indians, who dwelt on the banks of that stream, until they came to an understanding with each other and contracted a marriage relationship."
"After having made a treaty with him (Sandrakotos) and put in order the Orient situation, Seleucos went to war against Antigonus."

Junianus Justinus, Historiarum Philippicarum libri XLIV, XV.4.15

It is generally thought that Chandragupta married Seleucus's daughter, or a Greek Macedonian princess, a gift from Seleucus to formalize an alliance. In a return gesture, Chandragupta sent 500 war-elephants[9][40][41][42][43][44], a military asset which would play a decisive role at the Battle of Ipsus in 302 BC. In addition to this treaty, Seleucus dispatched an ambassador, Megasthenes, to Chandragupta, and later Deimakos to his son Bindusara, at the Mauryan court at Pataliputra (modern Patna in Bihar state). Later Ptolemy II Philadelphus, the ruler of Ptolemaic Egypt and contemporary of Ashoka the Great, is also recorded by Pliny the Elder as having sent an ambassador named Dionysius to the Mauryan court.[45].

Classical sources have also recorded that following their treaty, Chandragupta and Seleucus exchanged presents, such as when Chandragupta sent various aphrodisiacs to Seleucus:

"And Theophrastus says that some contrivances are of wondrous efficacy in such matters [as to make people more amorous]. And Phylarchus confirms him, by reference to some of the presents which Sandrakottus, the king of the Indians, sent to Seleucus; which were to act like charms in producing a wonderful degree of affection, while some, on the contrary, were to banish love."

Athenaeus of Naucratis

Southern conquests

The extent of the Maurya Empire after Chandragupta's southern conquests circa 300 BC.

After annexing Seleucus' eastern Persian provinces, Chandragupta had a vast empire extending across the northern parts of Southern Asia, from the Bay of Bengal to the Arabian Sea. Chandragupta then began expanding his empire further south beyond the barrier of the Vindhya Range and into the Deccan Plateau.[34] By the time his conquests were complete, Chandragupta succeeded in unifying most of Southern Asia. Megasthenes later recorded the size of Chandragupta's acquired army as 400,000 soldiers, according to Strabo:

"Megasthenes was in the camp of Sandrocottus, which consisted of 400,000 men"

Strabo, Geographica, 15.1.53

On the other hand, Pliny, who also drew from Megasthenes' work, gives even larger numbers of 600,000 infantry, 30,000 cavalry, and 9,000 war elephants:

"But the Prasii surpass in power and glory every other people, not only in this quarter, but one may say in all India, their capital Palibothra, a very large and wealthy city, after which some call the people itself the Palibothri,--nay even the whole tract along the Ganges. Their king has in his pay a standing army of 600,000-foot-soldiers, 30,000 cavalry, and 9,000 elephants: whence may be formed some conjecture as to the vastness of his resources."

Pliny, Natural History VI, 22.4

Jainism

Chandragupta gave up his throne towards the end of his life and became an ascetic under the saint Bhadrabahu, migrating south with them and ending his days in sallekhana at Shravanabelagola, in present day Karnataka; though fifth-century inscriptions in the area support the concept of a larger southern migration around that time.[46] A small temple marks the cave (Bhadrabahu Cave) where he is said to have died by fasting.

Successors

Chandragupta Maurya renounced his throne to his son, Bindusara, who became the new Mauryan Emperor. Bindusara would later become the father of Ashoka the Great, who was one of the most influential kings in history due to his important role in the history of Buddhism.

See also

References

  1. ^ Kulke, Hermann; Rothermund, Dietmar (1998) [1986]. A History of India (Third ed.). London: Routledge. pp. 59. ISBN 0-415-15481-2.  
  2. ^ Kulke and Rothermund 1998:62
  3. ^ a b Boesche, Roger (January 2003). "Kautilya's Arthaśāstra on War and Diplomacy in Ancient India". The Journal of Military History 67 (1): 9–37. doi:10.1353/jmh.2003.0006. ISSN 0899-3718.  
  4. ^ William Smith (ed), Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology, 1870, Vol 3 p. 705-6
  5. ^ Shastri, Nilakantha (1967). Age of the Nandas and Mauryas. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass. p. 26. ISBN 81-208-0465-1.  
  6. ^ Bruce Vaughn (2004). "Indian Geopolitics, the United States and Evolving Correlates of Power in Asia", Geopolitics 9 (2), pp. 440-459 [442]
  7. ^ H. Goetz (1955). "Early Indian Sculptures from Nepal", Artibus Asiae 18 (1), p. 61-74.
  8. ^ The Span of the Mauryan Empire, Kamat's Potpurri, accessed 9 September 2007
  9. ^ a b c d e Ramesh Chandra Majumdar (1977). Ancient India. Motilal Banarsidass Publ. ISBN 8120804368.
  10. ^ Parisishtaparvan, p 56, VIII239f
  11. ^ Biographies: Chandragupta Maurya
  12. ^ Jats the Ancient rulers, Dahinam Publishers, Sonipat, Haryana, by B. S. Dahiya I.R.S
  13. ^ Ram Swarup Joon, History of the Jats, Rohtak, India (1938, 1967)
  14. ^ Dehiya on the Jat Iranic identity of Mauryas: History of Iran
  15. ^ B. M. Barua. Indian Culture, vol. X, p. 34.
  16. ^ Journnal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland, 1915, (Pt.II), pp 406, 416-17,D.B. Spooner.
  17. ^ "Did Candragupta Maurya belong to North-Western India?", Annals of the Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute, Poona, 1936, p 158-165, Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute.
  18. ^ "Was Chandragupta Maurya a Punjabi?"', Punjab History Conference, Second Session, October 28-30, 1966, Punjabi University Patiala, pp. 32-35, H. R. Gupta.
  19. ^ Ranajit Pal, Non-Jonesian Indology and Alexander, New Delhi, 2002.
  20. ^ "They Taught Lessons to Kings", Gur Rattan Pal Singh; Article in Sunday Tribune, January 10, 1999; See also: My reminiscences, 1999, Gur Rattan Pal Singh.
  21. ^ The Kambojas Through the Ages, 2005, p 151, Kirpal Singh.
  22. ^ Invasion of Alexander, 2nd Ed, p 112, J. W. McCrindle.
  23. ^ "They Taught Lessons to Kings", Gur Rattan Pal Singh; Article in Sunday Tribune, January 10, 1999; Kambojas Through the Ages, 2005, p 149-154, Kirpal Singh.
  24. ^ For H. C. Seth's views, "Did Candragupta Maurya belong to North-Western India?"' consult: (1) Annals of the Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute, Poona, 1936, p 158-165, Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute;(2) Also see: The Indian Review, 1936, p 814, edited by G.A. Natesan; (3) "Sasigupta and Chandragupta", Indian Historical Quarterly, 1963, p 361.
  25. ^ "Did Candragupta Maurya belong to North-Western India?", Annals of the Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute, Poona, 1936, p 164, Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute, H. C. Seth; The Indian Review, 1937, p 814, Ed G.A. Natesan - India.
  26. ^ Was Chandragupta Maurya a Punjabi?, Punjab History Conference, Second Session, Oct 28-30, 1966, Punjabi University Patiala, p 32-35, Dr H. R. Gupta
  27. ^ See also: Punjab revisited: an anthology of 70 research documents on the history and culture of undivided Punjab, 1995, Ahmad Saleem - History; Punjab past and present: essays in honor of Dr. Ganda Singh‎, 1976, p 28, Ganda Singh - History.
  28. ^ The Kambojas Through the Ages, 2005, p 151, Kirpal Singh.
  29. ^ "They Taught Lessons to Kings", Gur Rattan Pal Singh; Article in Sunday Tribune, January 10, 1999.
  30. ^ For Ashvakas being sections of the Kambojas, see: Historie du bouddhisme Indien, p. 110, E. Lammotte; East and West, 1950, pp. 28, 149, 158, Istituto italiano per il Medio ed Estremo Oriente, Editor, Giuseppe Tucci, Co-editors Mario Bussagli, Lionello Lanciotti.
  31. ^ Other refs on Ashvakas = Kambojas are: Hindu Polity, A contitutional History of India in Hindu Times, 1978, p. 140, K. P. Jayswal; Political History of Ancient India, 1996, p. 133 fn. 6, pp. 216-20, (See also Commentary, op. cit., p. 576, fn. 22), H. C. Raychaudhury, B. N. Mukerjee; Panjab Past and Present, pp 9-10, Buddha Parkash; History of Punjab, Vol I, 1997, p. 225, (Editors) L. M. Joshi, Fauja Singh, Publication Bureau, Punjabi University Patiala; Raja Poros, 1990, Publication Bureau, Punjabi University Patiala; Ancient Kamboja, People and Country, 1981, pp. 271-72, 278, J. L. Kamboj; These Kamboj People, 1979, pp. 119, 192, K. S. Dardi; Kambojas through the Ages, 2005, pp. 129, 218-19, Kirpal Singh; Note: J. W. McCrindle says that the modern Afghanistan – the Kaofu (Kambu) of Hiun Tsang was ancient Kamboja, and name Afghan evidently derives from the Ashavakan, the Assakenoi of Arrian (Alexander's Invasion of India, p 38; Megasthenes and Arrian, p. 180, J. W. McCrindle). Thomas H. Holdich, in his classic book, (The Gates of India, pp. 102-103), writes that the Aspasians (Aspasios) represent the modern Kafirs. But the modern Kafirs, especially the Siah-Posh Kafirs (Kamoz/Camoje, Kamtoz) etc., are considered to be modern representatives of the ancient Kambojas. Other scholars like R. C. Majumdar, Romila Thapar etc., also take Ashvakas to be clans of the Kambojkas.
  32. ^ See Tarn, Greeks of Bactria and India p. 101
  33. ^ Sandrocottus is mentioned by Arrian to be of this line ; and we can have no hesitation, therefore, in giving him a place in the dynasty of Puru, the second son of Yayati, whence the patronymic used by the race now extinct, as was Yadu, the elder brother of Puru., Annals and Antiquities of Rajasthan, By James Tod , pp 37
  34. ^ a b c d e f Radha Kumud Mookerji, Chandragupta Maurya and His Times, 4th ed. (Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, 1988 [1966]), pp. 31, 28–33.
  35. ^ Boesche, Roger (January 2003). "Kautilya's Arthaśāstra on War and Diplomacy in Ancient India". The Journal of Military History 67 (1): 9–37. doi:10.1353/jmh.2003.0006. ISSN 0899-3718.   "Kautilya [is] sometimes called a Chancellor or Prime Minister to Chandragupta, something like a Bismarck..."
  36. ^ Trautmann, Thomas R. (1971). "The Cāṇakya-Candragupta-Kathā". Kauṭilya and the Arthaśāstra: A Statistical Investigation of the Authorship and Evolution of the Text. Leiden: E.J. Brill.  
  37. ^ John Marshall Taxila, p. 18, and al.
  38. ^ Vincent A. Smith (1998). Asoka. Asian Educational Services. ISBN 8120613031.
  39. ^ Walter Eugene Clark (1919). "The Importance of Hellenism from the Point of View of Indic-Philology", Classical Philology 14 (4), p. 297-313.
  40. ^ Ancient India, (Kachroo ,p.196)
  41. ^ The Imperial Gazetteer of India‎, (Hunter,p.167)
  42. ^ The evolution of man and society‎, (Darlington ,p.223)
  43. ^ W. W. Tarn (1940). "Two Notes on Seleucid History: 1. Seleucus' 500 Elephants, 2. Tarmita", The Journal of Hellenic Studies 60, p. 84-94.
  44. ^ Partha Sarathi Bose (2003). Alexander the Great's Art of Strategy. Gotham Books. ISBN 1592400531.
  45. ^ Pliny the Elder, "The Natural History", Chap. 21
  46. ^ Digambaras, Overview of World Religions, accessed 9 September 2007

Further reading

  • Kosambi, D.D. An Introduction to the Study of Indian History, Bombay: Popular Prakashan, 1985
  • Bhargava, P.L. Chandragupta Maurya, New Delhi:D.K. Printworld, 160 pp., 2002.
  • Habib, Irfan. and Jha, Vivekanand. Mauryan India: A People's History of India,New Delhi:Tulika Books, 2004; 189pp
  • Vishakadatta, R.S. Pandit.Mudraraksasa (The Signet Ring of Rakshasa), New Delhi:Global Vision Publishing House, 2004, ISBN 81-8220-009-1, edited by Ramesh Chandra
  • Swearer, Donald. Buddhism and Society in Southeast Asia (Chambersburg, Pennsylvania: Anima Books, 1981) ISBN 0-89012-023-4
  • Nilakanta Sastri, K. A. Age of the Nandas and Mauryas (Delhi : Motilal Banarsidass, [1967] c1952) ISBN 0-89684-167-7
  • Bongard-Levin, G. M. Mauryan India (Stosius Inc/Advent Books Division May 1986) ISBN 0-86590-826-5
  • Chand Chauhan, Gian. Origin and Growth of Feudalism in Early India: From the Mauryas to AD 650 (Munshiram Manoharlal January 2004) ISBN 81-215-1028-7
  • Keay, John. India: A History (Grove Press; 1 Grove Pr edition May 10, 2001) ISBN 0-8021-3797-0
  • Radha Kumud Mukherji. Chandragupta Maurya aur Uska Kaal (Rajkamal Prakashan, Re Print 1990) ISBN-81-7171-088-1

External links


Preceded by
Nanda Dynasty
Mauryan Emperor
322-298 BC
Succeeded by
Bindusara

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

Additions, corrections and discussions on this subject by users of the Classic Encyclopedia can be found on the discussion page

CHANDRAGUPTA MAURYA (reigned 321-296 B.C.), known to the Greeks as Sandracottus, founder of the Maurya empire and first paramount ruler of India, was the son of a king of Magadha by a woman of humble origin, whose caste he took, and whose name, Mura, is said to have been the origin of that of Maurya assumed by his dynasty. As a youth he was driven into exile by his kinsman, the reigning king of Magadha. In the course of his wanderings he met Alexander the Great, and, according to Plutarch (Alexander, cap. 62), encouraged him to invade the Ganges kingdom by enlarging on the extreme unpopularity of the reigning monarch. During his exile he collected a large force of the warlike clans of the north-west frontier, and on the death of Alexander attacked the Macedonian garrisons and conquered the Punjab. He next attacked Magadha, dethroned and slew the king, his enemy, with every member of his family, and established himself on the throne (321). The great army acquired from his predecessor he increased until it reached the total of 30,000 cavalry, 9000 elephants, and 600,000 infantry; and with this huge force he overran all northern India, establishing his empire from the Arabian Sea to the Bay of Bengal. In 305 Seleucus Nicator crossed the Indus, but was defeated by Chandragupta and forced to a humiliating peace (303), by which the empire of the latter was still farther extended in the north. About six years later Chandragupta died, leaving his empire to his son Bindusura.

An excellent account of the court and administrative system of Chandragupta has been preserved in the fragments of Megasthenes, who came to Pataliputra as the envoy of Seleucus shortly after 303. The government was, of course, autocratic and even tyrannous, but it was organized on an elaborate system, army and civil service being administered by a series of boards, while the cities were governed by municipal commissioners responsible for public order and the upkeep of public works. Chandragupta himself is described as living in barbaric splendour, appearing in public only to hear causes, offer sacrifice, or to go on military and hunting expeditions, and withal so fearful of assassination that he never slept two nights running in the same room.

See J. W. MacCrindle, Ancient India as described by Megasthenes and Arrian (Calcutta, 1877); V. A. Smith, Early Hist. of India (Oxford, 1908); also the articles INDIA: History, and INSCRIPTIONS: Indian.

Additions, corrections and discussions on this subject by users of the Classic Encyclopedia can be found on the discussion page

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