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Transcript
Imperial India
Decentralization under the IndoAryans
• Kshatriya kingdoms
• Decentralized form of
government: feudalism
• Peasants (sudras) had
hard lives; princes
(Rajas) lived in luxury
• Constant warfare
Invasion by Alexander the Great
• 326 – cataclysmic invasion
of Indus valley area
• Troops turned back
• Small-pox
• Inspired the Maghada
• ruler create an empire
The Mauryan Empire
• King of Magadha conquered other nearby
kingdoms and became a Maharaja
• Spies, soldiers, and bureaucrats
numbered over 1 million (combined)
Economy
• Took large tax – 25 – 50% of all output
• Built massive capital at Pataliputra
Imperial Organization
• Divided into districts reflecting existing
tribal boundaries
• Each district run by close relative or friend
of Chandragupta Maurya
• Gigantic Army
Chandragupta’s end
• 301 BCE – stepped down
to become a monk (!)
• Son Bindusara took rule
• Bindusara’s son ASHOKA
more famous
Ashoka
Ashoka (r. 269-232)
• First eight years typical
• Invaded frontier area of
Kalinga; bloodiest war of era
• Renounced violence &
became Buddhist
• Ruled according to Buddhist
principles, tried to spread
Buddhism
The Buddha
Ashoka (cont)
• Laid out “edicts” on 18 rocks and 30 pillars
across the empire
• Sent out Buddhist missionaries to Central
Asia, SE Asia, Parthia (Greeks in
Afghanistan)
Ashoka (cont)
•
•
•
•
Pilgrimages, roads with shade trees
Vegetarianism
Hosted Great Council of Buddhism
Created 84,000 Buddhist stupas around
India
Gupta Rule
• Established Hinduism as religion of state
• Heavily influenced by caste system, e.g.
who got which govt jobs (ksyatriya as
warriors, Brahmans as bureaucrats)
Map 10–1 International trade routes in Gupta
and Sasanid times
• Code of Manu codified Hindu
beliefs into detailed rules
• Hinduism absorbed Buddhism
(the Buddha as avatar of
Vishnu)
• Refocus on devotion to one of
the gods, ritual
Vishnu
• Preferred diplomacy
to war, esp.
intermarriage
• Did not have a welldeveloped
bureaucracy
• Ultimately fell to the
Huns