How About India??

Anything relating to our company that doesn't fit elsewhere
Posts: 3678
Joined: Wed May 05, 2004 9:30 pm
Location: Hetepsenusret

Postby Azeem » Fri Nov 24, 2006 11:26 pm

JuliaSet wrote:I paid around 6.00 USD for each of the top two books. Original reading revealed lots of details useful for creating a realistic game design. I see there are a few others out there at this time. LOL all it takes is money.


That ain't easy when you're outside the US. ;)

Reachrishikh, have you looked through local bookstores and libraries?

Gordon Farrell
Posts: 203
Joined: Mon Jul 26, 2004 4:19 pm

Postby Gordon Farrell » Sat Nov 25, 2006 5:14 pm

reachrishikh wrote:Maybe the people in other parts of the world would identify the word 'Taj Mahal' faster than 'Maharaja', but if VUG publishes the game, then going by their past naming conventions, they would prefer 'Maharaja', because after all, they did use the names of the rulers in their respective languages for the names of all games.

Caesar - Roman Title.

Pharaoh - Egyptian word for the ruler/king.

Zeus - Alright, they probably didn't have any specific name for the kings of the city states, and even if they did, it wouldn't have been a name the general public would have identified with. (And I've heard Greek is a tough language to speak, as it is, so the greek word for 'king' wouldn't have stuck). So Zeus, as the ruler of the heavens in Greek mythology worked fine, it was pretty well known as well, and signified the meaning 'ruler' in any case.

Emperor - Again, chinese is a very tough language to speak and learn, so the chinese word for 'Emperor' wouldn't have worked.

Also, you left out other exceptions:

Fact is, using the title of the highest ruler has been done less than 50% of the time in TM/Impressions city builders! Whenever marketing needs called for a deviation from that approach, the savvy producers of these games have been more than willing to go in that direction.

TAJ MAHAL would work fine as a CB title. Afterall, it's the most famous culmination of India's city building civilization! It is "just" a monument, but it evokes, as an image, everything that makes citybuilding an attractive gaming experience.

You're absolutely right though, that it would be a silly title to use if the game didn't go into the Islamic period. But there's no reason it can't! COTN went from ca. 5,000 BC to the dawn of the Roman era.

(PS - In Ancient Athens at least, the title of the legitimate ruler was "Archon." The title of a usurper was "Tyrannos." Probably a good example of when NOT to name a game after the head of state!)

Posts: 230
Joined: Wed Aug 24, 2005 8:37 pm

Postby reachrishikh » Sat Nov 25, 2006 7:26 pm

Azeem wrote:Reachrishikh, have you looked through local bookstores and libraries?

I do that all the time. Apparently, I'm their best friend (and their best customer ;) :D ). I buy a lot of books, and on a lot of topics, and most of those guys know the topics that I'm particularly interested in, so they keep them aside for me whenever new stock arrives. But still, books on subjects like History are rare, and expensive, so amassing those titles takes time, and is painful.

Gordon Farrell wrote:COTN went from ca. 5,000 BC to the dawn of the Roman era.

It did? Man! That's neat!
And know what that means? It means TM can do a similar thing with the Indian city-builder as well, if they decide to take it up. But I still don't think they should stretch it into the Islamic era. That was a time when they didn't really get into city building mode, as much as into city beautifying mode, making monuments and stuff, and modifying stuff that was already there. The real city-building civilization was during the Harrappan times, and that was way back. Then came the city-states, and the vedic period. Even they could be counted as city-builders. At this point, the game should play very similar to Zeus.

Never heard of Acropolis. Was it a part of the Impressions City Building Series?
Posiedon, well this is the name of a ruler in a way, as he's the second most powerful god after Zeus.
Cleopatra, again the name of a ruler, although it's a proper noun, and not a common noun as the general name for egyptian rulers.
And Posiedon and Cleopatra are only expansions, not the actual games themselves.
But I guess, they have to make exceptions sometimes, as in the case of greece, as you pointed out.

Maybe it's best to have a poll on the name issue, and see what happens.
I am posting one now.

Posts: 1151
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 12:24 am
Location: US

Postby JuliaSet » Sat Nov 25, 2006 7:50 pm

Historically, there were fewer changes in the civ till the arrival of gunpowder and the Westerners.

If India was a CB, personally I'd like to be able to build the Taj... and it might work out ok.. as the long time line has few technological changes till gunpowder.

Anyway, it would be fun to see what they could do with India. It is has a long time line (from Ancient to present) and has a known buildings and culture. As much as Maya/Aztec/Inca are cool civilizations, it might be a problem since their time line is so short and the buildings are not as well known to us. If the three American building civs were presented as one game with three "chapters" there might be enough "meat" for a game. That would make for plenty of art work to differentiate the civs. Am guessing its a little too much for one game. It would be three times the work for the price of doing one civilization.

I'm not privy to TMs plans. They are known to be very secretive about projects. Even testing is a big secret. If you get a hunch that they are testing, it is probably best to NOT ask folks, as testers feel the pressure. I know that PMs about testing pressured me a lot.

Posts: 9232
Joined: Sat Dec 11, 2004 6:30 pm
Location: San Diego, California

Postby MarkDuffy » Sat Nov 25, 2006 9:02 pm

Acropolis was the Impressions Combo pack that included Zeus & Poseidon.

Gordon Farrell
Posts: 203
Joined: Mon Jul 26, 2004 4:19 pm

Postby Gordon Farrell » Sat Nov 25, 2006 10:07 pm

"I still don't think they should stretch it into the Islamic era. That was a time when they didn't really get into city building mode, as much as into city beautifying mode"

Huh, that's interesting. Islam generally brought a lot of interest in urbanization to the areas where it spread, as the benefits of Islam (congregational worship, education, religious scholarship, medicine) were best met in cities. Baghdad and Cairo among others were built from scratch by Muslim caliphs. But it sounds like maybe India was already so urban that add'l city-building was unnecessary.

Also: I guess Acropolis was the only time the CB series used an architectural landmark for a title instead of the name or honorific of an omnipotent individual.

Posts: 3678
Joined: Wed May 05, 2004 9:30 pm
Location: Hetepsenusret

Postby Azeem » Sat Nov 25, 2006 11:51 pm

JuliaSet wrote:Historically, there were fewer changes in the civ till the arrival of gunpowder and the Westerners.

Actually, it was when Muslim Persians and Central Asians began taking an interest in Northern India do we see major changes. Pre-Islamic India and Islamic India have very different cultural and technological attributes. The Central Asians, not Europeans, brought in gunpowder and this was used effectively by the invading Mughals, who came in from Central Asia and claimed to be of Mongol descent. Also, the Islamic architecture we see in India is a fusion of classical Indian architecture and Persian Islamic architecture. Scientific advances were various through the eras, such as surgery and sterilizing of tools in the Mauryan period, which was a pre-Islamic period and temporarily a Buddhist period (when Ashoka proclaimed Buddhism as the state religion). Also, India isn't a single unitary culture or entity; it's one of the most diverse regions in the world.

And Gloria, the Mayan timeline goes back from 2000 BC. ;) Mayan civilization has been around for a very long time. The Aztec and Incan Empires grew out of ancient cultures as well, but their heyday as an "Empire" was not long-lived.

Posts: 1151
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 12:24 am
Location: US

Postby JuliaSet » Wed Dec 06, 2006 6:50 pm

Here is some starting information: (hope you can add more)
Social Structure
For Hinduism, traditionally there were four castes in the early period:the Brahmans or priests, the ksatriyas or warriors or nobles, the vaisyas merchants or peasants, and the sudras or servile class. The first three had the right to read the Veda, a right which was denied to the other three castes. Each caste was assigned well-defined functions: the Brahmans were to teach the Veda and to perform sacrifices; the Ksatriyas to protect the common people and to study the Vedas; the vaisyas to work; the sudras to serve. Contracts and marriages between members of different castes were prohibited. But, as in so many other fields, there was a wide guls between theory and practice.

The Brahmans:
Many Brahmans were worthy of the respect with which they were surrounded, they led simple and pious existence, disdaining material profis and fulfilling the duties of their caste with piety. They acted as village schoolmasters, or taught in the universities. Sometimes they withdrew to a forest bound hermitage where they would live in humble bamboo huts and devote themselves to their religious duties. To mediation and teaching.

There were also those who made blatant use of the knowledge of magic acquired through a study of certain Vedic or Brahmanic texts, and did not hesitate to exploit the credulity and superstitious spirit of the masses, and eared a living by telling fortunes or practicing sorcery. These charlatans thrived most often in country districts, and though they were despised more or less openly, these is reason to think that they were feared as well.

Between these two extremes were to be found a great variety of Brahmans exercising trades or professions unconnected with their priestly character; these might be actors, owners of gaming houses, quacks, tax collectors, army commanders, managers of transportation concern, spies or even hired servants. At times there were were laborers though disapproved by the orthodox, but often received dispensation under hardship rules.

The Warrior Nobles:
The second caste performed the functions of government. They were taught the use of weapons and their hereditary aptitude for command was cultivated. The king usually belonged to this caste, and was the supreme ruler, conqueror and maintainer of order. There was rivalry with the brahmanic caste, but its members generally recognized the superiority of the Brahmans because of their priestly character. The army was largely composed of members of this caste. Many of these nobles did not exercise a military calling and were authorized to gain their living in various other ways, by taking up some trade or craft, but retained the privileges of their caste.

The Vaisyas
Although the vaisyaz shared the right of the Brahmans and ksatriyas to be taught the Veda, they were still considered definitely inferior. Originally they formed the agricultural community and it was no doubt this humble character which singled them out for drudgery. By the beginning of the classical era their lot had improved greatly. From being small farmers, some had become powerful landlords, while others followed occupations that were both lucrative and honorable, often as experts in precious stones and metals, woven materials, spices or perfumes, whose knowledge was held in high esteem by the kdatriyas themselves. As a class, they amassed huge fortunes, gained mostly in trade by sea and by caravan; and they set up guilds with which the state and the administration had to recon. Sometimes they were appointed to important posts.

The sudras were burdened by a very marked social and religious inferiority. They were not only despised from the earliest times, but also considered impure and were denied reading the Vedas. They had no possibility of freeing themselves from servitude, experienced light taxation... were hunters, fishermen, butchers, executions, gravediggers, undertakers, those who sold liquor, sweepers, basketmakers and wheelwrights. Foreigners were also considered to be in the category of outcasts.

The Mixed Class:
the statute of castes could never really be applied strictly enough to prevent mixed marriages, and the lawgivers had to face up to the facts and make the system somewhat more flexible. The children issuing from mixed unions were considered to have forfeited their rights because they did not belong definitely to a particular caste. The discredit extended two generations. It did not prevent them obtaining honorable posts or exercising well-esteemed professions such as bards, herald, equerry, physician or scribe.


This class included very different types of persons. In the first category are those "born of the house" who were practically members of the family in which they were servants. Having been bought or recede as a gift they're then inherited along with the goods and chattels. Their purchase price was modest and consequently slave-owning was widespread. Living and working conditions of these slaves did not differ greatly from those of the sudras. In a certain sense they were better off than the sudras, as they recede no wages and could more easily avoid the necessity of working when they were sick, since they were not dependent on wages for their daily bread.

If a female slave was seduced by the master, and had a child by him, the master was bound to pay her an indemnity and to free her and her newborn child. The law also specified that slaves should have a chance to recover their freedom: they had the right to escape, but once only. If they successful avoided recapture, they could rejoin their caste, if they had one successful escape they could enjoy the condition of a free man. Those who had managed to save money they had earned freely while off-duty, could buy their freedom if the sum was sufficient.

Conditions of falling into slavery were: falling into debt, a contract, prisoners of war, booty from war.

Very often membership of a trade guild was more important than belonging to a particular caste, especially where Buddhist influence was uppermost, and a man's social status was determined less by his caste than by his profession.

Political and Administrative Structure:
The king was not only the living symbol of the State's rights and powers. The monarchy was usually hereditary, although kings were sometimes elected and kingship was conferred on him by a ceremony. His divine right was never questioned, but it never led to theocracy.

He was the head of the army, and was to be versed in military science as in diplomacy. The kingdom was ruled by four commissioners, by a prefect, by a group of administrative officials and by municipal council headed by the chief representatives of the merchants, bankers, scribes and clerks. At the bottom of the city's administrative ladder were junior stewards responsible for anything from ten to forty families each.

Everything was surveyed, measure, even managed by the state: cadastral registers and land-measurement, the produce of the royal farms, fields, herds, flocks, granaries, workshops, mills, monopolies: arsenals, military equipment, the upkeep of the different army corps, public finances, the money in circulation, market values, the standardization and stamping of gold, weights and measures, work instruments road maintenance and road traffic, sea and river transportation all involved taxes, tolls, passports, sale permits and customs duties. A strict watch was kept on public slaughterhouses, gambling dens, fermented drinks and hetaera. Commerce was subject to quota restriction, and market prices were closely controlled. Measures of length and of time were constantly liable to official verification. There was a right of inspection of certain home industries such as those connected with weaving. Output and working conditions were supervised, in the country as well as in town, and regulations covered even the humblest tasks such as the gathering of dead wood and gleaning.

Since the entire country's economy was largely based on agriculture, the state ensure efficient operation by undertaking important irrigation schemes, supplying communities with water or seed where necessary, and supervising communities with water or seed where necessary, and supervising the production of crops, par of which would be set aside for the state granaries. To facilitate the expansion of trade, and to maintain efficient communications, the emperors and kings all applied themselves to the task of creating routes and keeping them open.

In addition, they possessed a merchant marine. Generally, the state arrogated to itself a certain number of monopolies which provided it with Revenue and at the same time allowed it to make use of a labour force unable to find work in private industry because of its social status.

The Mauryan Kings and their successors were all active in providing the country with reservoirs and wells. Canals were maintained for irrigation. Fertilizer, crop rotation, fallow times were all part of the agricultural scheme.

There were 3 principal sowings: first, rice sown during the rainy season and reaped at the onset of winter,; secondly beans, peas, lentils and other legumes, including sesame, which ripened during the cold season and could be gathered in spring; lastly parley, wheat flax and hemp, mostly reaped during the spring or winter. Millet and sugar cane, cut before the summer rains, completed the list of staples.

Three types of rice were grown, white, black and so called 'rapid'. This last ripening in two months.

Sugar cane was watched over by overseers, whose motionless figure could be seen crouched down in he shadows of the high stalks. After the crop was harvested, it was kept in storage until it was require for processing, when it was pressed in a special machine to extract the sugar. The same method was used with sesame, which produced a useable oil.

In the villages immediate vicinity, the fields gave way to orchards, gardens growing vegetables or flowers and sometimes plantations of jute or cotton. Fruits, flowers and vegetables were grown in abundance, including gourds and cucumbers, ginger and spices such as pepper and saffron. Fruits were carefully ripened, wild varieties being picked and added to those grown domestically and were put to dry in special lofts.

Cattle were of equal importance to crops in the village economy. Wealth was estimated on the basis of the number of herds of cattle in a herd, whether it belonged to a single individual or to the whole community.

Herds were composed of bullocks, cows, rams, sheep, swine, but horses rarely, as they were not bred in India in any great number and were of a quality less desired than the imported horses.


The importance of agriculture was equaled in ancient India by the great scale on which commerce was practices and by the essential role it played in the country's economic life. It was supplied by local and craft productions, by importation and by exportation, and was carried on by sea and by caravan routes. The whole Indian coast line was dotted with ports. Through its geographical position, India profited from the communications established in two spheres; between the Persian Gulf, East Africa and its own ports, which were regularly visited by Greek, Roman and later Arab ships.. Secondly, those connecting India with the countries of Southeast Asia, where she possessed prosperous trading post established since the beginning of the Christian era. Chinese shipping transporting fifty or sixty ton load sailed thought eh straits of Malacca to discharge their cargo in the gulf of Bengal.

Routes and caravans:

Good roads were maintained by the state.

Merchant vessels are rarely depicted in Indian art. They are known to have three masts of equal height set with rectangular sails and with rigging and also carried a jib, the upper tip attached to a sort of boom and the opposite end fixed to a crass beam st up on the deck. The hull is high and massive, sweeping upwards at each end, the prow and the poop both decorated with pairs of eyes. Fore and aft platforms project of the the water, their purpose being to be allowed to be piloted by pole sounding in shallow waters.

According to Pliney, they were capable of building ships of three thousand amphorae (seventy five tons burden) But Indian sources claimed vessels large enough to hold from two hundred to seven hundred passengers and crew, plus a considerable cargo, cattle, provisions for the journey, abundant supplies of drinking water.

The ships were guided by a pilot, who belonged to a guild. Passengers required a passport (proof of taxation)

Apparently, exports exceeded imports by a large margin: India had the advantage of producing all its own essential commodities and in addition, being able to provide many local products which were much in demand my its foreign customers as luxuries ivory, fine woods, precious stones, perfumes and spice. Pearls cam mostly from Ceylon.

Iranian and Western merchant were constantly in India to buy gems and pearls for resale in their own countries. The sums were paid in gold coinage, resulting in a serious drain on the resources of the Roman treasure in India' favor, during the era when Roman society was abandoning itself to wild extravagance.

India produced great amounts of precious and semiprecious stones who's quality remained superior to those from other sources, including diamonds, agates, onyx jaspers, amethysts, aquamarines, Zircons, tourmalines. Indians made lavish room for these yet plenty remained for exportation.

It also natural products by foreign customers, particularly buffalo and rhinoceros horn and teeth, tortoise shell, mother of pearl from oysters, salted, brined lizard, and a red dye called shellac. Precious woods like teak ebony, rosewood, sandalwood, perfumes, and incense. Condiments and spices such as cinnamon cardamom etc.

The smiths knew how to forge iron weapons.and exported them. They did export brass ware too.

Animals, such as talking parrots, tame monkeys, pheasants, snakes and elephants, a of which found places in the private zoos of western kings and emperors.

Many dyes and pigments were extracted in ancient India from vegetable and mineral bases. The Greek historian Ktesias who lived in the 4th century B.C. at the Persian Court has observed that "Among the Indians are found certain insects about the size of beetles and of a colour so red that at first sight one might mistake them for cinnabar. Their legs are of extraordinary length and soft to the touch. They grow upon trees which produce amber, and subsist upon their fruit. The Indians collect them for the sake of the purple dye, which they yield when crushed. This dye is used for tinting with purple not only their outer and under-garments, but also any other substance where a purple hue is required. Robes tinted with this purple are sent to the Persian King, for Indian purple is thought by the Persians be marvellously beautiful and far superior to their own." Ktesias also says that the Indian dye is deeper and more brilliant than the renowned Lydian Purple.


The distillation of scents, perfumes and fragrant liquids and ointments was one area where the knowledge of chemistry was applied in India since ancient times. In fact the very word 'scent' which is of unexplained origin according to the Oxford Dictionary, is possibly derived from the Sanskrit term Sugandha which literally means 'good or aromatic paste'. This word could have been transmitted to European languages through the Greek langua which has borrowed (and lent) many wor from Sanskrit. Other instances of such transmission are the English words li 'cotton' which is derived from the Sanskrit Karpasa or the word 'sugar' derived frc the Sanskrit Sharkara, etc. Many present day perfumes had existed

India since ancient times and perhaps had originated here. In ancient times perfumes and fragrant ointments were of two typ viz., Teertha (liquids) and Gandha (slurries or ointments). During the coronation Kings or durlng any auspicious occasion person was sprinkled with aromatic oils. Fragrant ointments based on sandalwood were applied during ceremonial bathing. Even today during some festivals like Diwali aromatic slurries and pastes are prepared out of a powder called Sugandhi. Utne and are used during the ceremonial bath which is taken during that festival. Even in other religious rites, Sandalwood, Ochre and Camphor are traditionally used by Hindus.

SANDALWOOD: Since very early times Sandalwood and Sandalwood oil were items of export. The Greek text of the 1st century A.D., Periplus mentions sandalwood as one of the items being imported from India. The word Sandal (wood) is derived from the Latin terms Santalum Album or Santalacae. These terms used by the Romans to describe sandalwood were, according to the Oxford Dictionary, derived from the Sanskrit term Chandana, for sandalwood.

The Sandalwood tree is native to India and is found mainly in South-western India in t he state of Karnataka. Sandalwood has been a known item of export from India since ancient times. Authors of Sanskrit texts on botany which in Sanskrit is called Vanaspati-Shastra had classified Sandalwood into three types viz. white sandalwood Shrikanda (which perhaps is an abbreviation of the term Shewta-Chandana ), the second is yellow sandalwood or Pitta-Chandana and the last is red sandalwood or RaktaChandana

The reference to Sandalwood in the Periplus is perhaps the earliest available western reference to Sandalwood. It has been mentioned in later times by Comas Indiwpleustes in the 6th century A.D. as Tzandana and thereafter it is frequently referred to by Arab traders. Oil was also extracted from Sandalwood. This oil which was a thick but refined liquid was extracted in specially constructed oil mills called Teyl-Peshani and Teylena-Lip. The oil extracted from these mills was a thick, dark yellow liquid. Alongwith Sandalwood, the Sandalwood oil was also an item of export from India during ancient times. Sandalwood oil was mainly bought by the Romans between the 1st and 3rd centuries A.D.

MUSK: Musk is also a fragrant substance which is secreted in the gland by a male musk-deer. Musk is redish-brown in colour and is used as a base for perfumes and also as an ingredient for soaps to give it a musky smell. In Sanskrit, Musk is known as Muska which means the scortum i.e. the pouch of skin containing the testicles of the deer. The English term Musk originates from the Sanskrit term Muska according to the Oxford Dictionary.

The Sanskrit word Muska is perhaps derived from the words Maunsa or Masa which means 'flesh'. In Sanskrit, other words used for musk are Kasturi, Kastutrika and Mruga-Nabhi. The last term literally means 'a deer's navel'.

TAMARIND: Tamarind is a fruit whose acid pulp is used in the making of cooling or medicinal drinks. The English word Tamarind is derived from the Latin term 'Tamarindus Indica' which is derived from the Arabic term Tamr-Hindi which means 'Dates from India'. The Arabs were familiar with only one form of fruit i.e. Dates, which grow in the desert. Thus when they came across another fruit which they could use in the making of cool refreshing drinks they named it 'Dates from India' Tamr-Hindi; after the country from where they had obtained the fruit. In Sanskrit, Tamarind is called Chincha and Amlica. The latter term is derived from the word Amlica which means acidic. This name is given to Tamarind due to the acidic odour and juice that it has. This fruit was an item of export from India since ancient times. The fact that it originated in India is evident from the name Tamr-Hindi which the Arabs gave it.

CAMPHOR: Camphor is a whitish translucent crystalline volatile substance with aromatic smell and bitter taste. It is also used in pharmacy as a medicinal drug. The word camphor is derived from the Latin word 'Camphora' which comes from the Arabic term Kafur, which ultimately originated from the Sanskrit term Karpuram, according to the Oxford Dictionary.

The Sanskrit words for Camphor, apart from Karpuram are Hima-Valuka which literally means 'Snow-sand' and Chandraka which means 'like a moon' perhaps because it is whitish and translucent. Camphor was also an item exported from India since ancient times. The Camphor that was exported was not in its natural form but it was refined and cut into strips and square pieces before being loaded for export. That it was mainly obtained from India is established by the fact that the name chosen for this commodity was the corrupted version of the original Sanskrit term. Even today Camphor is used by devout Hindus as an incense during prayer.

SPIKENARD: Spikenard was a costly aromatic ointment extracted since ancient times from an Indian plant known in Sanskrit as Nardostachys Jatamansi which perhaps means 'the braid of hair (Jataa) of (Narada). The English word Spikenard is derived from the Greek term Nardostakhus and the Latin term Spica Nardi; both the terms are derived from the Sanskrit term Nardostachys Jatamansi. This plant has purplish-yellow flower heads and is very rarely found. Its smell is quite pleasing and hence it had been in great demand since ancient times.

In Sanskrit, other terms used to refer to this plant are, Jatila which means 'difficult', Tapasvini which literally means 'concentration and devotion'. These words used to describe Spikenard indicate that it was very difficult to obtain and cultivate this plant. In India this herb was available only in the Himalayas. Spikenard, which is aromatic and bitter, yields on distillation a pleasant smelling oil.

In India, it had been used since ancient times as an aromatic adjunct in the preparation of medicinal oils and was popularly believed to increase th growth and blackness of hair. The Roman historian Pliny observes the Spikenard was considered very precious i Rome and it was stored in alabaster boxes by persons of eminence.

Another aromatic herb exported from ar cient India was the Nard. It is a root of th ginger-grass found in western Punjab an Baluchistan. The Nard is found in semi-aril areas and it seems to have been found by Alexander in Gedrosia (Baluchistan) when hi army unknowingly trampled the plant whil on march and this resulted in a sweet pel fume which we are told "was diffused fa and wide over the land by the trampling". The Nard is known in Latin as Cymbopogon Jwarancusa the word Cusa is perhaps de rived from the Sanskrit word Kusha fo grass. The use of the word grass to refer tz Nard is perhaps because of its being confused by the Romans with other aromatic grasses like lemon grass, gingergrass, citronella, etc., which also yield aromatic oils.

COSTUS: Costus is the root of the plans Saussurea Lappa, a tall perennial plant growing on the open slopes of the vale or Kashmir and other high valleys of that region. The plant is found at elevations ol 8000 to 13000 feet. It was used by the Romans as a culinary spice as also as a perfume.

This root was dug up and cut into small pieces and shipped to Rome and China. The root is generally of the size of a finger wit' a yellowish woody part and a whitish barl It is said that Seleucus Callinicus had ot tained Costus from India and sent it as gift to the Milesians.6 The Romans also re ferred to costus as radix, the root as distirguished from Nard which was called folio the leaf. The price of Costus in Rome is stated by Pliny to have been 5 denarii per pound.

India still exports Costus and today the collection of Costus is a state monopoly. In Kashmir the product is used by shawl merchants to protect their fabrics from moths. The Indian origin of Costus is evident from the fact that the word is derived from the Sanskrit term Kustha which means 'that which stands in the earth'. This word was perhaps used as Costus was a root.


Macir is mentioned by Dioscorides as an aromatic bark. Pliny says that it was brought from India. He describes it as a red bark growing upon a large root, which bears the name Macir from the tree that produced it. He prescribed a mixture of this bark with honey as a cure for dysentery. The word Macir is today neither found in the English nor the Sanskrit Dictionaries but it has been mentioned in the Periplus on pages 80 and 81.

-The word Macir has been said to have been derived from the Sanskrit word Makara which in India was said to have been used in ancient times as a traditional Ayurvedic remedy for dysentery. Macir seems to have been the root-bark of the tree Holarrhena Antidysentrica which according to the notes appended to the Periplus was found throughout India and Burma in the lower Himalayas upto 3500 feet.

Both the bark and seed of this tree were among the most important medicines in the Ayurvedic system of medicine. According to the notes to the Periplus. "This tree found by the Portuguese was called 'Herba malabarica owing to its great merit in the treatment of dysentery they having found it on the Malabar coast. The preparation, generally in the form of a solid or liquid extract, or of a decoction, is astringent, anti-dysenteric an anthelmintic. The seeds yield a fixed oil, and the wood ash is used in dyeing.''

Posts: 1151
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 12:24 am
Location: US

Postby JuliaSet » Wed Dec 06, 2006 6:53 pm

continued.... Thus this commodity which was exported from India in early times had multiple uses.



Guilds in Ancient India

by Jyotsna Kamat
First Online: October 01,2004
Page Last Updated: April 03,2005

Corporate life was in vogue in India since Vedic times. The word gana meant community and head of the group, or corporate body, was known as 'Ganapati'. This name came to be associated in later times with Elephant God or deity of learning also known as 'Ganesha'. Mention of corporate bodies is found as back as 800 – 1000 B.C. Caravans (Sarthas, Sarthavahanas), of merchants which toured the entire sub-continent do find mention in good numbers in early centuries. Guilds were known as srenis or nigamas and these elected mercantile bodies controlled trade and commerce of various commodities. These were great supporters of royal power. Guilds arranged wrestling matches and athletic games. Harivamsa, mentions a wrestling match between Krishna & Kamsa for which an arena was constructed with pavilions of different guilds and banners each bearing an emblem signifying their craft.

We get a clear idea of formation and function of guilds from Kautilya's Arthashatra ( 4th century B.C). In an ideal scheme of a city, sites were reserved for offices and quarters of guildsmen. Taxes paid by guilds formed an important source of income to the state. Guilds of a cooperative nature were referred to as Samutthachara. These guilds supervised community projects of those times. The local interest was guarded by the elders of the guild. Various undertakings of the guilds helped amass huge fortunes and Kautilya prescribes methods of extracting money from these guilds in times of need by the state.

Constitution of a Guild
Sreshtin or Jyeshthaka was the elder. There used to be a treasurer (Bhandagarika) and a superintendent of accounts (karanika) who made regular entries in prescribed registers. The history, customs, professions and transactions of corporations were clearly notified. Various rules and regulations were laid down for the workmen of guilds and due concessions given. Representatives of guilds formed important members in royal meetings.

Joint guild of bankers, traders and transport merchants (Sarthavaha) existed with membership spread over a large number of towns and cities. In Karnataka, Aihole was a great center of guilds controlled by five hundred swamis. Their branches were spread throughout South India. There were seals of merchants, caravan traders and their commodities. Chief artisans (Prathamakulika) and number of artisans indicate a systematic network of corporate activities in ancient India.

Qualifications of Guildsmen
There used to be executive officers called karyachintakas who were appointed by the king. They were supposed to possess honesty, ability, self-control, knowledge of law-books and selflessness. Lekhakriya (documentation) was important and Madhyastha or middleman stood probably as guarantee for the faithful conduct of a guild. There were rules regarding membership of a guild.

Srenimukhyas or Heads of guilds were prominent members in city administration. In Gupta age (2nd century to 5th century) Sreshtnis, Sarthavahas, Prathamakuliks (Head of a local guild) and Prathamakayastha (Head Accounts – Officer) figured prominently in town and district councils.

Functions of Guilds
Different crafts and artisans formed guilds which educated the youngsters of each craft, spinning, weaving, oil-crushing, ship-building, and other industries. The rich guilds maintained armies which accompanied trade caravans. Srenibala or Ayudha srenis (Guilds of arms) existed. Mandasore inscription of Kumara Gupta (414 - 455 A.D.) refers to a guild of silk-weavers. Some members of this guild took to arms. Some were bankers, some supervised endowments and some patronized art and religion. The guilds also acted as courts of law, disputes among members were settled by their own (elected) executives and not by the State tribunals.

This Mandasore inscription (modern Mandasore in Malva M.P.) gives some interesting information about corporate mobility of the times. Originally they came from Sourashtra in Gujarat. Some members learnt archery and became fighters. Some took to religious life. Some became astrologers. Some became ascetics. But all joined in constructing a temple to Sun-god. Oilmen and artisans find mention.

This only shows that there was mobility and flexibility in vocations though the Guild is mentioned prominently as one of silk-weavers. In the words of Dr. R.C. Majumdar, the eminent historian, "The guild in ancient India was not merely the means for the development of arts and crafts. Through autonomy and freedom accorded to it by the law of the land, it became a center of strength and abode of liberal culture and progress, which truly made it a power and ornament of the society Architecture


State Monopolies:

income taxes, merchant taxes, transport taxes, tools tax.

The working of mines constitued one of the State's monopolies and proved an important source of revenue. Gold, Silver, copper, iron, red lead, mercury, manganese, emeraldls , lapis, rock crystal, pearls fishing, coral fishing, shells, quarries, salt, saltpetre. All gaming halls were state controlled.


Appearance of Cities:
During the Mauryan Period the outer walls consisted of a colossal palisade made of huge tree trunk embedded deep in the ground. There were also thick walls of sun dried brick and later, walls of unmortared bricks. These ramparts were topped by serrated parapets, backed by flights of steps, and had a huge gateway. The ramparts were ringed by a series of moats serving as main sewers. A bridge crossed the moat at each entrance. Some cities had numerous rings of walls and moats.

The town's main gateway was a building in itself, with massive towers flanking and overlooking the actual gates... Inside were arranged various official apartments, including those of the toll-collectors; the windows of the offices were furnished with balconies and fitted with latticework or finely cut wooden screens. Interior stairways let to the upper storys: the municipal granary was on the top floor and light was provided by gable-windows whose carved beams were decorated with painting. The vaulted roofs were either thatched or covered with roughly baked curved tiles; the joists were curve and painted; the crest of the roof was ornamented with a line of tapering, rounded projections fashioned from wood or terra-cotta; the doorway and fore-part of the building were embellished with statues.

The main entrance was high enough to allow entry to elephants carrying palanquins. At night the entrance was closed by heavy wooden doors, reinforced by iron bars. There were two smaller gates for foot traffic. Curfew was fixed for midnight. Secret passages in the country, were constructed, so that spies might ply their trade, and those in power make a quick getaway when needed.

Near the main gateway, facing east, there was always to be found a tall column standing by itself. Made of stone, wood or iron, and topped by a sculpted froup or by a wheel resting on a bill-shaped capital, recalling similar columns in Persepolis. This was a most important monument in the eyes of the Indians, a symbol of victory and hospitality, endowed with both imperial and cosmological significane, and forming part of the severigns 'regalia'. They were often engraved with edicts, or indicated that the city enjoyed royal protection.

The town itself was encircled by a boulevard connected by a regular network of streets and landes crossing each other at right angles. Main streets were paved with cobblestones, and gutters ran alongside to carry off sewage water into the drainage trenches outside the town. The streets were wide enough to allow passage of 4 horse chariots.

Every important town a great expanse of ground reserved for the daily markets at which the peasants from the surrounding countryside sold their produce and products. The various guilds also possesed hedquarters in the same district. The stalls lining the streets were separated from the living quarters by a courtyard, and were fronted by a veranda, as they are today.

Light carts were on the roads, they were 2 wheeled vehicles with roofs made of brightly coloured materials stretched over hoop-shaped ribs, funished inside with carpets on which the driver and passengers squatted, and equipped with screens to protect the riders from being viewed by passerbys.

Further toward the center of the capital were situated the residential districts. The building here wer larger and better built. Several stories hich and even presented an even frontage of whipewashed wall along the sides of the avenues. THese same districts also contained myany public buildings. These buildings included those devoted to the town's health services, such as hospitals and maternity homes, and sanatoriums for ages and sick animals. There were alms-houses for the poor and to beggars. Other buidings housed educational establishments in which the masters were lodged. Art galleries were open to the public and frequented by it particularly during the autumn.

The area near the palace had residences of courtesans, professional musicians, and the royal offices. Here were to be found the resididence of the city administrator, the headquarters of the public scribe, the Treasure and all the other State secretariats; presided by a commissioner and a municipal council.

The kings country house served as a hunting reserve.

Religious structures:
Holy Places
Reliquary of Buddhist Saints, Stupa
Hindu Temples, robust buildings made from timbers, brick and stone, had interior courtyards paved with gravel surfaces, decorated with garlands of flowers and greenery. Gongs, clarinets, conches and cymbals were used by the sacred orchestra.

Health Care:
There were 2 kinds of physician: independent doctores called into consultation privately and responsible financially if convicted of error; and official practitioners in hospitals subsidized by pious or royal foundations, where medical assistance was free.

Doctors made house calls, and were provided with a meal when they arrived.

Although there was an ingredient of magic in the treatments, the doctors had advanced the study of oto-rhino-laryngology, toxicology, opthamology, and pharmacy. Anotomical research, tho contrary to ritual regulations, had been pursured since Vedic times. Plastic surgery was provided for those with split lips or noses could be regrafted and torn lobes reattached to ears, all services which were also appreciated for post battlefield medicine.

Fashionable Existence:
Courtesans were a common in daily life for the well to do. Common people used prostitutes, who also followed armies, and set up along the main road outside of the main army encampment.

Games and Gaming:
Although games of chance were condemned by the Brahmanic code of conduct, where were played in all classes of society and chess was enormously popular. Chess was invented in India as a means to work out military strategy. It was played by four players who used two dice, four figures (king elephant, horse, and chariot or ship), the traditional units of the army. Young nobles met together daily to play several sessions of the game. Chess was played on specially designed boards or on a table with precious inlays.

Dicing existed in various forms. They were made of gilded shells. Die were the size of a hazel nut and had five facets. Dice were played on the floor. This game entailed taking a handful of dice from a heap on any one of 24 premitted manners, at the same time announcing aloud the number of dice being thrown and the number remaining in the heap. The winner was the one who threw the number he had announced, at his first attempt; the rules demanding, in addition, that this number must be a multiple of four.

Gaming dens seemed to have abounded. They were subject to strict control by the State and contributed large sums to the treasury in the form of taxation, the hiring of premises and the dice themselves, since the players wer not allowed to make use nor own their own dice.

Artistic Diversions:
Music held a great place in the daily life of the nobility. They all learned to play the bow-harp, and later the instrument was replaced by a form of lute. The bow harp was one of the most ancient instruments. Eventually even men, kings were required to master it. (coinage in Gupta Dynasty show the king holding the lute)

Painting was an essentian adjunct of elegant love-life, and also held an important place in everyday existence. It served the purposes of religious propaganda, and was used as a means of communication, and to memorialize an image of a loved one. They used 'pencils' for sketching, paint brushes made with bristles made of animal hair, and shells or pots containging colured powders, all arranged in a box. It was an appropriate gift to a bride from the bridegroom. Religious thermes were executed on long lengths of material with bamboo rollers at each end.

Sculpture was also appreciated and taught to the lesiure class.

The aristocracy devoted particular attention to the various forms of literary expression. Many nobles composed poems or dramas in the elegant style in fashion at the roual court. Kings themselves devoted themselves to the arts of writing: The famous Drama Mrcchakatjka 'The little clay cart' has been attributed to Sudraka, 4th century AD.

Harsa, King of Thanesvar, wrote three interesting dramas. The Kings Samudragupta and Kumaragupta endowed themselves with the title 'King among poets'.

The theatre was at its preak of brilliance during the age of this study. The period between the first and eigth centuries AD saw the rise of India's greatest dramatic authors, some of them kings, other poets or brahmans. Dramas were constructed according to the precise rules which were codified in various teatises and which made drmatic writing an art designed specifically for the intelligentsia, making no appeal at all outside of the king, the nobility and cultured classes. Actors depended on the patronage of the king. Theatrical performances generally took place only during religious or princely festivals, great pilgimages and publick or private celebrations of some importance such as wedding.

Actors were recruited from the lowest castes. Their reputations were deplorable, and their wives wer generally considered to be over-generous in bestowing their favours. Those actors who graduated to leading roles were practically un-budeable from their particular range of parts. Female roles were usually played by women, but sometimes by men. Male roles included a lover, a buffoon, and a wit, while the female roles comprised lover and confidante. Junior rolse were shared among the other members of the company.

The troupe's manage was the theatres chief stage hand. He was called the 'rope holder' the producer, dramatic coach and star actor. There were no special theatre buildings and actors used the halls reserved for dancing and music which was attached to most palaces and temples. Sometimes they played in the temples.

The preparation of the 'theatre' was gaudily decorated. Sometimes wooden stages were erected at the end of a rectanglular room.

Life at Court:
The royal chaplain held first place among the kingdom's great men. Even at courts of Buddhist kings, he was usually a Brahman. His post was usually hereditary and more than likely he was the king's tutor when he was a boy. He was the favorite partner for games of chance, supervised the running of the palace while the king was absent.

The Field Marshal was equally important, enjoyed heretitary rights.
The Grand Treasurer
Driver of the King's Chariot (up to the 7th century) also could be the bard.
King's barber
Kings cook
Kings food taster
The white parasol was the symbol of kingship.
King's mahout

Two animals, the State Horse and the Kings Elephant demanded special attention, and were regarded as royal regaila.


Imported wine in use and very popular.
Royal processions were proceeded by the palace orchestra.

Posts: 1151
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 12:24 am
Location: US

Postby JuliaSet » Wed Dec 06, 2006 6:53 pm

There was a change in the primary Military units over India's long existance.

One of the historical aspects of India is that it had a shortage of local horses. A breeding program in the tropics did not provide the great numbers of them required for the chariot armies. (The Medieval period required them for cavalry) Nearly all of the horses were acquired from trading via the north or west, and for the southern kingdoms, by sea trade.

Elephants and elephant training were also key to vast armies of Elephants during the Mahabharata, and were also key to the historical aspect of the early and Medieval eras. These two elements (horse supply and elephants) would be key to any India Mod.


This page is mostly from "The Art of War in Ancient India" by P.C. Chackravarti. I have made direct quotes more than likely, but have also condensed and paraphrased where the book has gone into more detail than is needed. It would take me quite a long time to indicate long quotes and paraphrasing, so if there are any questions, please ask me to find a more direct quote and its context.
Design specifics: only limits were the military units, which would not go beyond a weak cavalry..
There were no basic warriors. The basic military unit was the (short bow) archer... and led to the longbow.

Chariots were modeled on two patterns, either the biga with two horses, or the quadriga, with four horses. If its at all possible to get the animations made, that upgrading a 2 horse chariot would show an extra horsie... up to 4 horses.

"In the 4th century BC, the Indians placed their chief reliance in warfare on elephants tamed and trained for the purpose, in the epics the chief strength of the army consisted in chariots, as reported by Greek writers..

The general trend for early Indian armies was: Archer>Chariot>Elephant>Cavalry, with Chariots phasing out by early Medieval era.

One of the principal weapons of the Ancient Hindu armies were bowmen. They went through extensive training. Skill with the bow was necessary for promotion. It was an art form for the nobility, who had to master the bow, as they were the caste of the military.

In the Vedic period the army appears to have consisted of two divisions, the archers and the chariots. During the post-Vedic period the horse and elephant were incorporated in the corps... by the time of the Islamic kingdoms in India, there were no more chariots in the army. They had been gradually replaced by horsemen.

Another view of the organization of the armies was the six-fold division, which consisted of the hereditary troops, mercenaries, guild levies, soldiers supplied by feudatory chiefs or allies, troops captured or won over from the enemy, and forest tribes... this came from inscriptions dated from the 6th to 11th century AD.

Of the different classes of troops, ancient military opinion seems to have attached greatest importance to the hereditary troops. The mercenaries came next, then guild levies (drafted units), next the allied troops while the forest tribes were placed at the bottom.

In a passage from the Mahabharata, the guild levies are considered as important as the mercenary troops... guild levies did not receive any regular wages from the royal exchequer.

There were wild tribes in central India who were often employed for military purposes by Hindu kings, as the same manner as American Indians were employed by the English and French in the wars in North America. They brought their own war apparatus to the theater of war, but they fought for pay and plunder. Their services were considered helpful when the army had to pass through forests and defiles, morasses or mountains, or when it was the intention of the invader to ravage and devastate the enemy's country.

Huien Tsiang, a Chinese pilgrim in the 12th century reported.... "On the even of his famous campaigns of conquest, king Harsa of Kanau, 606-647 AD possessed an army which comprised of 50,000 infantry, 20,000 cavalry, and 5,000 elephants. When he had finished his task, the cavalry are said to have been increased to 100,000, and the elephants to 60,000."

They are described in the Mahabharata as a conglomerate mass. They were recruited from the lower classes, and followed the charioted knight, but at the knights death, they usually fled, or were slaughtered like sheep who had lost their shepherd. In fact, the epic foot soldiers seem to have been useful in order to secure a decorous setting for the display of knightly prowess. They suffered the greatest number of casualties, but contributed little or nothing to the decision of battles. In this respect the very early Indian infantry bears a remarkable affinity to European infantry the the feudal age.

Evidence of the classical authors later works on politics and military science, and early Mohammedan chronicles. All point to the conclusion that the infantry in ancient India never outgrew this subsidiary position in the military organization of the country. It seems that in the 15 to 16 centuries, there was no continued or systematic attempt in any part of the country to use the infantry as the kernel of armies or develop in that solidarity and defensive power... like that of the Roman legions.

From the foregoing remarks it must not be thought that the infantry in ancient India were mere 'residue'. As archers they seem to have been redoubtable fighters, and won the admiration of the Greeks. It is also probable that being the most numerous part of the army, they sometimes decided the fortunes of battles by sheer weight of their numbers. Moreover, in certain special forms of warfare, their services must have been of real importance.

Hautilya, declares that the best ground for the infantry is one which contains big stones and boulders or is thickly planted with trees, green or dry. Another source declares that even ground is best, another says forest and hilly regions. Another source says "his troops are mostly infantry, because the seat of his government is among the mountains."

In defense of forts and strongholds, foot soldiers were especially relied upon. The equipment of the infantry varied from age to age and region to region, which are difficult to document.

Arrian says that Indian-footsoldiers in the 4th century BC. carried a bow made of equal length with the man who bore it. "This they rest upon the ground, and pressing against it their left foot, thus discharge the arrow, having drawn the string far backwards; for the shaft they use is little short of being three yards long, and there is nothing which can resist an Indian archer's shot, neither shield, nor breastplate, nor any stronger defense if such there be. In their left hand they carry bucklers made of undressed ox-hide. Some are equipped with javelins instead of bows, but all wear a sword, which is broad in the blade, but not longer than 3 cubits. And this when they engage in close fight, they do so with reluctance and wield with both hands to fetch down a lustier blow."

It appears that the bow was the principal weapon of the infantry of 4th century BC; but the sword and the javelin were also used. Archers did not have shields, because they needed both hands to fire their bows, but the other infantry were depicted with shields.

War Chariots:
The use of war chariots were found in early history of Indian warfare. They were employed as early as the Vedic age. In the epics, they constitute the most important arm. The car-warrior is the main strength of the epic army. So completely does he dominate in the battle scenes, so controlling is the role that he fills, that the period represented by the epics may well be designated as the Chariot age of Indian history.

Both Vedic and epic evidence, prove that chariots were more or less a monopoly of warriors belonging to the noble classes. The rank and file fought on foot. The chariot was followed by by two wheel guards, and attended by a retinue of foot men.

When we come down to the age of Alexander, we are struck by a profound change in the Indian military situation. The chariots were still in use, but no longer the most important arm. Unlike the average epic knight, king Porus came to the field of battle riding, not a chariot, but an elephant. Megasthenes reports.. "No one invested with kingly power ever keeps on foot a military force without a very great number of elephants and foot and cavalry." He omits war chariots completely. (Circa 300 BC) Porus had some 300 chariots, but the elephants frightened the Macedonian horses and caused a rout. Chariots required perfect ground, or they became mired in the mud, rocks etc., and became useless, while the cavalry and elephants would be effective on most terrain. Chariots seemed to disappear after the Mauryan era.

Vedic period saw light 2 horse chariots, and developed in time to those with 4 or more horses. Heavy Chariots could have 4 wheels or more, were drawn by at least 4 horses, and gradually supplanted the lighter ones.

There is no satisfactory record of the use of cavalry in battles of the Vedic period. In the epics the cavalry is recognized as a separate arm, but it is of no real value and is wholly unorganized."The mounted soldiers are recognized as a body apart from others, but do not act together. They appear as concomitants of the war cars, dependent groups, but separate horsemen appear everywhere. Their employment was much influenced by that of the elephants. A body of horsemen are routed by an elephant.

The classical chronicles show that the Indian cavalry in the age of Alexander were no longer as inefficient and unskillful as in the epic age. They were gradually outgrowing the impotence of infancy and winning recognition as an arm of real value. In the third and fourth century BC, Indian states maintained larger cavalry forces.

The Indian cavalry could not withstand the attack of Alexander, but that was because of two reasons. First the Macedonian cavalry were better trained, better disciplined and better equipped. And, second, Alexander himself was a cavalry commander of superb genius. He understood the advantage of hurtling masses upon the enemy and breaking through with sheer momentum, using the horse and rider as projectiles.

There is little knowledge from the Gupta period about cavalry. In the tenth century AD, Somadeva says: "the cavalry represents the mobility of the army. With a king having strong cavalry even enemies at a distance easily come within his grasp". Never the less, it must be noted that the cavalry never came to occupy the front rank in the army organization of ancient India. It never came to form the core of the Indian army. It appears that place was taken by the elephant than the horse. As in the 4th century BC, so in the 11th and 12 century AD, the superiority of foreign horsemen once again decided the fate of India There are early Mohamedan chronicles to show that their most brilliant military triumphs in India were won by the skillful use of a numerous and well trained cavalry."

Horse Supply!
One of the reasons that the Hindus never did or could evolve a cavalry system comparable in strength and efficiency to that of the Greeks or Mohammedans was the lack of good horses in India. Ancient writers are unanimous in regarding the horses of the north and the west as better than those of India proper. In the Mahabharata, the most famous horses come from the Sindu country ..The imported horses excelled in speed and in not being shied by noise.

This paucity of good horses within India proper often compelled powerful monarchs both in the north and in the south to get their supply of horses from foreign countries. Kingdoms closer to the source of horses were better armed, than those at a distance.

Southern Kingdoms even traded for horses by sea. "It was agreed that every year... should send to the Dear, 14,000 strong Arab horses obtained from the islands of Fars. Each horse is reconned at 220 dinars of red gold." Marco Polo said later.. "There is no possibility of breeding horses in this country."

The lack of good horses of indigenous breed must have proved a serious obstacle to the development of a first rank cavalry system in ancient India, I was indeed a fatal lack.

Bitted and bridled, unsaddled mostly, they had some kind of armour.. shields of protection. There was no proficiency in mounted archery! There were few notes of any horse archery.. And that only in the Gupta period and it did not take hold.

Horse Training Skills:
They were trained in: circular movement, jumping, gallop, movement following signals, tight circling, running and jumping simultaneously, kicking with forelegs, side movement.. All of which reminds me of the Spanish school in more recent history. Similar training moves were taught to the elephants.

Elephants are mentioned in the Rig Veda as wild, terrible beasts. They were tamed and domesticated well before this time. They became the most important arm about the time of the Macedonian invasion. The classical chronicles make it clear that in his titanic struggle against Alexander, Parus pinned all his hopes on the elephants in his army. In the battle-array that he drew up on that fateful day, he posted the elephants along the front like bastions in a wall. He seems to have thought that these monsters would terrify the foreign soldiers, and reneder the Macedonian cavalry unmanageable. Alexander, a shrewder judge of military affairs, instinctively realized the grave danger involved in such extensive employment of elephants in war. Everywhere in India was the same implicit faith in the effectiveness of elephants.

In the eastern kingdom of Magadha, there were about 4,000 trained war elephants. Shortly afterwards Candragupta Maurya increased the strength of the elephant corps to 9,000. The age of chariots had passed, that of elephants had begun.

In the succeeding centuries, the importance of elephants went on mounting higher and higher in Indian military estimation. A medieval author goes so far as to declare that "an army without elephants is as despicable as a forest without a lion, a kingdom without a king, or as valour unaided by weapons."

It may be pointed out here that it was not in India alone that elephants were used in war. Classical authors tell us that after his conflict with Chandragupta Maurya, Selucas Nikator ceded to the Indian emperor the three satrapies of Herat, Kandahar and Kabul and received in exchange a gift of 500 war-elephants. A few years later (301 BC), when fighting against Antigonus, the Sirian king brought these elephants into the field and it is to their instrumentality, that contemporary opinion ascribed his victory at Ipsos. Many centuries later, Sultan Mahmud carried off from India a large number of trained elephants and used them in his wars against the Turks and Tansoxiana.

As a matter of fact, elephants, though dangerous, were of real value in ancient and medieval warfare. Used with caution, and as a subordinate arm, they sometimes turned the scale of victory at the decisive moment. The Hindus erred not in the use of elephants, but in the emphasis they put upon that use.

Ancient writers have valued the functions of war elephants. The most important of these functions were: acting as the vanguard of a marching army, preparing roads, camping grounds, and landing ghats in rivers, clearing away such impediments as small trees and shrubs, battering down walls, gates and towers, breaking up or scattering of trampling down the hostile force. Another writer stated that elephants were specially useful in all confused battles.

Elephants were sometimes of more harm than benefit. If wounded, they were liable to get beyond control and escape at top speed Once taken by terror, they could turn and trample their own men.

The elephant was usually ridden by several warriors, one of which was the mahout.. Megasthenes says that in his time the usual practice was for a war-elephant was to carry three fighting men. The elephantry fought with both missile and short-arm weapons. In the Mahabharata elephant warriors were described as armed with knives, daggers, stones and other weapons, but from the Gupta period onwards, their principal weapons appear to have been bows and arrows.

Elephants were equipped from early times. In the Mahabharata, they are referred to as armed with spikes and iron harness, and wearing a girth about the middle, neckchains, bells, wreathes, nets, umbrellas and blankets. Adorned with ornaments and bells, they could also have a howdah on the back. In the middle ages, they were covered with iron or brass plates.

Naval Warfare:
The old notion that the Hindus were essentially a land locked people, lacking in spirit of adventure and the heart to brave the seas, is now dispelled. Researchers have proved that from very early times the People of India were distinguished by nautical skill and enterprise, that even in the Harappan period, they went out on trading voyages to distant shores and established settlements and colonies in numerous lands, islands skirting the Indian Ocean and Mesopotamia. The question as to whether they ever developed a navy to fight battles on rivers and seas is a baffling problem.

Ancient writers sometimes speak of fighting galleys as constituting a part of the royal military establishment. They kept pirates from controlling the sea lanes, hiding from customs agents and protecting merchant vessels. It is agreed that these duties would be performed by armed vessels belonging to the state. There are more direct literally references to ships employed as instruments of war. One mentioned the navy as one of the 'limbs' of a complete army. Another says "by regular practice one becomes an adept in fighting from chariots, horses, elephants and boats, and a past master in archery. In describing the various classes of boats, is specified one class with a prow cabin that was useful for naval warfare. They were also shown on coins as having two masts and a rather unusual jib

The earliest known case belongs to the time of Candragupta Maurya. Megathenes informs us that the Mauryan War Office had a naval department with an admiral at its head and a committee of five to assist him. Asoka's rock edict mentioned that he maintained diplomatic relations not only with Ceylon, but with the Hellenistic monarchies of Syria, Egypt, Cyrene, Macedonia and Epirus."

Three areas of Indian that had nautical skill and enterprise were in Bengal, the valley and delta of the Indus, and the extreme south of the Deccan Peninsula.

The people of Bengal were famous for their nautical resources very early in history. Sources indicate that harbours and dockyards were well-known in the 6th century AD. A copper -plate grant dated 531 AD, refers to a shipbuilding harbour. When the Palas became rulers of Bengal, they built a regular fleet for fighting purposes, with an admiral in command. The naval power of Bengal long outlived the collapse of the Pala dynasty. Bengal's reputation as a naval power continued even in the medieval period.

The Indus basin saw the state organize against piracy. Coastal pirates were known for heavy attacks of Persian forces, and trade; also inflicting heavy losses on Indian boats and coastal areas as well.

It was in the extreme south of the Deccan peninsula that naval power reached its climax. Literary evidence, both native and foreign, proves that from very early times they carried on overseas trade with Western Asia, Egypt and later with the Greek and Roman Empires. There were fewer naval operations in southern waters till later in our period of study. Tamil/Ceras were the first there to develop a naval power. The Colas seem to have begun their naval career later than the Ceras, but they attained to a much high point of achievement. Their age-long hostility with the kings of Ceylon necessitated the creation of a fleet of ships. They sailed and conquered extensive districts in the Far East.(Nakkavarum Islands, Isthmus of Kra, parts of the Malay Peninsula and Sumatra. The Bay of Bengal was converted into the "Lake of Cola." By the late Medieval period.

It will thus be evident that naval warfare was not unknown in ancient India. But it was certainly not as widely practiced as land warfare. Boats were indeed used in war, but probably more often as transports than as a fighting line of ships. Naval battles were fought, but only when the theater of hostilities made it impossible to fight on land.

Spies filled an important role in both the civil and military affairs of ancient India. They were employed as early as the Vedic age. Manu speaks of five classes of spies, and of their various disguises. They were to detect crime, keep watch on the conduct of officials in the districts, and constantly ascertain the king's and his enemy's strength.

Spies were an important feature of government. Cipher writing was used, carrier pigeons, infiltrating enemy camps to demoralize and spread misinformation.

Military Administration:
Recruitment of Troops:
In early Vedic times, the king probably maintained no standing army. His small retinue of personal attendants acted as his bodyguard served him in hall and bower, and went on his errands. When any expedition for offensive or defensive purposes was necessary, local levies were raised from the people . These brought their own arms and weapons, and probably were captained by their own chiefs.

It is certain that in the 4th century BC, when Alexander invaded India, standing armies had become a normal feature of Indian military life. The causes which led to this development seem to have been mainly the increasing unwillingness on the part of cultivators to leave their plow for an indefinite length of time and also the ambition of rulers to conquer more territories and absorb them in their growing empires.

Classical authors offer us a glimpse of the sort of life led by the army of Candragupta Maurya. Megathenes says that when not engaged in active service, the soldiers passed their time in idleness and drinking. "They are maintained at the king's expense, and are always ready to take the field, for they carry nothing with them but their own bodies. They have only military duties to perform. Others make their arms, others supply them with horses, and they have others to attend them in the camp, who take care of their horses, clean their arms, drive their elephants, prepare their chariots and act as their charioteers. A long as they are required to fight, they fight; and when peace returns, they abandon themselves to enjoyment, the pay which they receive from the state being so liberal that they can with ease maintain themselves and others."

Inscriptions dated 738-739 AD. say that the rulers of the Maurya were "served by armies from afar." Indicating there were mercenaries, who were trained soldiers.

Brahmans according to law, "any priest might serve as a soldier if unable to support himself as a priest." Many celebrated warriors and leaders were born in the priestly class. The lower classes provided the rank and file of the army, while the warrior class provided trained troops. The army was divided into sections, platoons, brigades, etc. The army in ancient India usually received its wages and rations from the state, but of the rates and pay and rations, drawn by officers and privates, we hardly know anything. Besides the salaries and wages in cash, officers and privates in the army were sometimes rewarded with exemptions from land revenue, sometimes with assignments of land. In second century AD, and inscription shows military officers holding large fiefs of land. Land grants were usually made in favour of officers who had distinguished records of service to their credit.

Besides pay, either in the shape of salaries or land assignment., Officers and troops were occasionally give n special allowances on the eve of the expedition. It was considered a prime duty of the state to support the wife and dependents of soldiers dying while on duty.

On the March:
It was agreed that no foreign expedition should be taken when there were internal troubles, or an expectation of an attack from the rear. It was a profitable policy in warfare to embarrass an enemy either by inciting other powers to attack it from the rear or by fomenting internal troubles within its territory.

Certain seasons of the year were seen to be peculiarly well suited for military operations. Spring and Autumn provided cooler weather, plentiful water, foraging possibilities and animal feed were more readily available.

In spite of preferences, military actions were not restricted to these seasons. Different starting times were dependent on the composition of the invading army, internal strife, climate, water....

No expedition was undertaken without consulting astrologers. They decided the best starting time. It was a very important step but such blind faith in the occult must have hampered rational military operations. It also proved and obstacle to the Hindus' success in war, as it must have often prevented them from taking the most obvious advantages of the enemy.

Religious rites and ceremonial duties were performed by the king before setting off.

Setting out...
In the forefront of the army were a group workmen who were to set up the destination camp. The army took a standard arrangement while traveling to its next destination. The king was in the center with his harem! That's right he took almost the whole city with him! His treasure chests and weaker troops. The flanks were occupied by the horsemen, while the chariots would be placed beside them on both sides. The elephants should march beside the chariots, and beyond the elephants should be placed the forest men. Behind the traveling army was an entire host of rabble, retainers, servants, prostitutes, all led by the marching drum and the clamor of the masses.

A grand army could make an enormous traveling parade. A day's march was about 16 miles through the usual territory. They encamped in prepared quarters... The Royal Harem, the wives of the nobles, mistresses and and great retinue of courtesans. "According to texts, As soon as the army reached the encampment, the prostitutes pitched their tents, spread their beds, made themselves attractive and like old residents, began to receive strangers. The terrific noise and clouds of dust, produced by a marching host, became a busy, noisy encampment.

Bullock trains, and bullock carts were used for transporting engines of war, food for the soldiers, and administered by a superintendent. Sometimes forced labour was used in difficult terrain, or where preferred transports were not available. Bridges were crossed by elephants.. Planks spread over pillars erected, rafts, or boats.

Army in the Field:
Great importance was given to positioning the army in the field according to the harmony of the ground. The two armies were drawn up in battle order facing each other. There are many descriptions of the numerous battle formations used in the era. War drums thundered, music was played (drum, tambourine, trumpet, conch shell, horn, and lyre)

Another useful custom was the provision of medical aid to the wounded officers and troops. The Mahabharata refers to surgeons and physicians marching with the Bandava army to battle. The king should have not merely a rich store of medicine, but also expert physicians equipped with surgical instruments. This was regarded as an important duty of state. It was also a great expense.

Fortification and Siegecraft:
Prehistoric fortification consisted of sites located on hills and other easily defended locations... surrounded by a low rampart wall, a second wall much more substantial than the first, both built of stone boulders laid without mortar.

In the post Vedic period, as the country became more thickly settled, the tendency to surround towns and cities with defensive works for protection against enemies appears to have become more marked. An archaeological report says "The faces of the walls were build of massive undressed stones between 3 and 5 feet in length, carefully fitted and bonded together without mortar, while the core between them is composed of smaller blocks carefully cut and laid with chips or fragments of stone. The walls stood to an elevation of 11 to 12 feet.

4th century forts and strongholds:
The classical chronicles make it evident that when Alexander invaded India in the third century, forts and strongholds held by Hindu chiefs were scattered thickly over the country. The capitol of almost every state, however small, appears to have been fortified with defensive work of varying solidity. Natural water was important.

Gupta forts:
The chief note in the history of military architecture of this period was the increased tendency to construct hill forts. The typical site preferred for a hill fortress was a precipitous cliff sloping to a river on one, two or even three sides and with steel slopes falling away on the other side. At the highest point was build a fort serving as a citadel. Some of there were like eagles nests on lofty cliffs, places of last refuge rather than strategical positions, But others were of real strategical strength, commanding the countryside or the approaches to a state. Of the humorous hill fortresses established in our period, the most celebrated at the time of the Mohammedan invasions were Kalanjar, Gwalior, Mandor, Ghira and Kangra. It is noteworthy that Mohammedan historians have referred to some of these forts in terms of enthusiastic admiration.

The military science of ancient India seems to have been more skillful at defense than in attack. The fortresses of the age could usually withstand the most powerful siege weapons know to the people. Of the tools of siegecraft, little is known. It is probable that the use of scaling ladders and battering rams was know, elephants were offasionally employed to batter in the games of a fort. (a major function of war elephants) In the Mahabharata elephants have been described as 'town breakers.' Tamil writer speaks of 'brigades of war elephants, with their tusks blunted by battering the enemy's forts.

Another device occasionally employed was mining, but due to the location of most forts this was not possible in the high rocky ground.

The use of fire, was used as well. But the most usual method employed to get over the resistance of a fortress by strict investment and starving out and cutting off its water supply. Sieges were often long and protracted.

Repelling a siege must have varied from age to age and locality to locality. In one instance it was mentioned that all thatch covered houses within the fort should be plastered with mud as a protection against fire, all possible impediments were to be placed before the enemy to prevent a close investment grass and firewood round the fortress were set on fire and destroyed as far as 5-6 miles; and a system of secret wells, hidden pits and barbed iron cords were to be devised round the fort. It appears in writings that heavy, immovable machines, worked by mechanical power (tech machinery) were placed over the gates and walls, kept in readiness for projecting large shafts at the foe or dumping rocks on them. (Sounds like catapults permanently installed) Hilltop forts employed rolling stones to stuck down the attackers.

Notes on bows....very early, early ones made of bamboo, cane or wood. Horn bows also, bowstrings made of silk thread,sinews of deer and buffalo, or one composed of bamboo twine with silk thread wrapped around it.

Hindu bows usually varied from 3.25 cubits to 4.5 cubits. Horn bows were a bit shorter. Arrows made of sara reed, sometimes of wood and bamboo, with feathers from heron, goose, brown hawk, osprey, peacock vulture and wild cock. The Mahabharata mentions all of these plus feathers of flamingos besides. Number of feathers preferred to be four, fastened by means of threads and sinews. Feathers trimmed to six inches long. If they were to be flamed, a burning agent was applied. Some arrows were built entirely of iron, which only the strongest archers could shoot... were a means against elephants. Some arrows were about three feet in length. A quiver held 20 arrows.

(A contrivance of almost any kind) most any kind of addition, but seen for the most part as balistae and catas... immobile "when rotated, throws stones in all directions... a tower situated on the top of a fort provided with a leather cover... as an archer's platform.. a crossbeam at the entrance of a city placed to fall on the arriving enemy, a water machine to put out fires, etc. These were also described in the Mahabharata

The sword appears to have come into use comparatively later than the bow. No sword has been discovered at Mohenjo-Daro and Harappa. And although it was known to the Vedic Aryans, it appears to have been seldom used in battles of the period.. But as centuries elapsed, it came more and more into prominence. The Bow was first, then came the sword.. In the later centuries of our period, the sword came to rival the bow as a weapon of offense.

Spears and Javelins:
Developed from a sharp headed stake, the spear may be reckoned with the club as among the most ancient of weapons. The Mahabharata javelin/spear was seven cubits long, with a bamboo handle.

The Mace:
the club or mace is one of the most primitive weapons of India. It was in use during the time of the Macedonian invasion. It varied in materials, design and size. A battle axe was mentioned in the Rig Veda, but seldom as an instrument of war. In the Mahabharata, it is mentioned under several names and is wielded as a weapon of the nobility.

Other parts of battle attire were shields of leather, metal, of body armour for early nobles, metal armour in Alexander's time. Armour of wadded quilts of cotton were for the rank and file.

Posts: 1151
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 12:24 am
Location: US

Postby JuliaSet » Wed Dec 06, 2006 6:58 pm

Religions (very basic stuff here)
In ancient India, the entire life of an individual was subordinated to religious concepts, to the customs imposed by there concepts and to the superstitions which insisted that each single act, however unimportant, must unavoidably entail a good or bad consequence. The religious mentality of the people was highly developed, and is this state of affairs was not only freely tolerated but even actively insisted upon.

From the moment that he was conceived, an Indian belonged to a caste corresponding to a religious social structure. Furthermore, he belonged not only to a caste, but also a clan (gotra), this tie of kindred being ratified by a sort of ritual communion. From birth to death he received a whole sequence of sacraments: those of infancy, brahmanic initiation, marriage or the eremitic state. Even after his death, ritual, which made him a father or ancestor, still bound him to his gotra and integrated him into the family's religious system. Apart from these fundamental modalities, each person's daily life was lived within a framework of countless religious and magical acts, while the annual cycle of festivals provided the rhythm of collective life.

Hinduism differs from Christianity and other Western religions in that it does not have a single founder, a specific theological system, a single system of morality, or a central religious organization. It consists of "thousands of different religious groups that have evolved in India since 1500 BCE."
Hinduism is generally regarded as the world's oldest organized religion.

The many forms of Hinduism are henotheistic religions. They recognize a single deity, and view other Gods and Goddesses as manifestations or aspects of that supreme God. Henotheistic and polytheistic religions have traditionally been among the world's most religiously tolerant faiths.

This religion is called:

Sanatana Dharma, "eternal religion," and
Vaidika Dharma, "religion of the Vedas," and
Hinduism -- the most commonly used name in North America. Various origins for the word "Hinduism" have been suggested: It may be derived from an ancient inscription translated as: "The country lying between the Himalayan mountain and Bindu Sarovara is known as Hindusthan by combination of the first letter 'hi' of 'Himalaya' and the last compound letter 'ndu' of the word `Bindu.'" Bindu Sarovara is called the Cape Comorin sea in modern times. 1
It may be derived from the Persian word for Indian.
It may be a Persian corruption of the word Sindhu (the river Indus)
It was a name invented by the British administration in India during colonial times.

Beliefs about the early development of Hinduism are currently in a state of flux:

The classical theory of the origins of Hinduism traces the religion's roots to the Indus valley civilization circa 4000 to 2200 BCE. The development of Hinduism was influenced by many invasions over thousands of years. The major influences occurred when light-skinned, nomadic "Aryan" Indo-European tribes invaded Northern India (circa 1500 BCE) from the steppes of Russia and Central Asia. They brought with them their religion of Vedism. These beliefs mingled with the more advanced, indigenous Indian native beliefs, often called the "Indus valley culture.".

This theory was initially proposed by Christian academics some 200 years ago. Their conclusions were biased by their pre-existing belief in the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament). The Book of Genesis, which they interpreted literally, appears to place the creation of the earth at circa 4,000 BCE, and the Noahic flood at circa 2,500 BCE. These dates put severe constraints on the date of the "Aryan invasion," and the development of the four Veda and Upanishad Hindu religious texts. A second factor supporting this theory was their lack of appreciation of the sophisticated nature of Vedic culture; they had discounted it as primitive.
2 The classical theory is now being rejected by increasing numbers of archeologists and religious historians.

Emerging theory: The Aryan Invasion view of ancient Indian history has been challenged in recent years by new conclusions based on more recent findings in archaeology, cultural analysis, astronomical references, and literary analysis. One scholar, David Frawley, has established a convincing argument for this new interpretation.
3 Archeological digs have revealed that the Indus Valley culture was not "destroyed by outside invasion, but...[by] internal causes and, most likely, floods." The "dark age" that was believed to have followed the Aryan invasion may never have happened. A series of cities in India have been studied by archeologists and shown to have a level of civilization between that of the Indus culture and later more highly developed Indian culture, as visited by the Greeks. Finally, Indus Valley excavations have uncovered many remains of fire altars, animal bones, potsherds, shell jewelry and other evidences of Vedic rituals. "In other words there is no racial evidence of any such Indo-Aryan invasion of India but only of a continuity of the same group of people who traditionally considered themselves to be Aryans...The Indo-Aryan invasion as an academic concept in 18th and 19th century Europe reflected the cultural milieu of the period. Linguistic data were used to validate the concept that in turn was used to interpret archeological and anthropological data."

During the first few centuries CE, many sects were created, each dedicated to a specific deity. Typical among these were the Goddesses Shakti and Lakshmi, and the Gods Skanda and Surya.

Soon after Buddha's death or parinirvana, five hundred monks met at the first council at Rajagrha, under the leadership of Kashyapa. Upali recited the monastic code (Vinaya) as he remembered it. Ananda, Buddha's cousin, friend, and favorite disciple -- and a man of prodigious memory! -- recited Buddha's lessons (the Sutras). The monks debated details and voted on final versions. These were then committed to memory by other monks, to be translated into the many languages of the Indian plains. It should be noted that Buddhism remained an oral tradition for over 200 years.

In the next few centuries, the original unity of Buddhism began to fragment. The most significant split occurred after the second council, held at Vaishali 100 years after the first. After debates between a more liberal group and traditionalists, the liberal group left and labeled themselves the Mahasangha -- "the great sangha." They would eventually evolve into the Mahayana tradition of northern Asia.

The traditionalists, now referred to as Sthaviravada or "way of the elders" (or, in Pali, Theravada), developed a complex set of philosophical ideas beyond those elucidated by Buddha. These were collected into the Abhidharma or "higher teachings." But they, too, encouraged disagreements, so that one splinter group after another left the fold. Ultimately, 18 schools developed, each with their own interpretations of various issues, and spread all over India and Southeast Asia. Today, only the school stemming from the Sri Lankan Theravadan survives.

One of the most significant events in the history of Buddhism is the chance encounter of the monk Nigrodha and the emperor Ashoka Maurya. Ashoka, succeeding his father after a bloody power struggle in 268 bc, found himself deeply disturbed by the carnage he caused while suppressing a revolt in the land of the Kalingas. Meeting Nigrodha convinced Emperor Ashoka to devote himself to peace. On his orders, thousands of rock pillars were erected, bearing the words of the Buddha, in the brahmi script -- the first written evidence of Buddhism. The third council of monks was held at Pataliputra, the capital of Ashoka's empire.

There is a story that tells about a poor young boy who, having nothing to give the Buddha as a gift, collected a handful of dust and innocently presented it. The Buddha smiled and accepted it with the same graciousness he accepted the gifts of wealthy admirers. That boy, it is said, was reborn as the Emperor Ashoka.

Ashoka sent missionaries all over India and beyond. Some went as far as Egypt, Palestine, and Greece. St. Origen even mentions them as having reached Britain. The Greeks of one of the Alexandrian kingdoms of northern India adopted Buddhism, after their King Menandros (Pali: Milinda) was convinced by a monk named Nagasena -- the conversation immortalized in the Milinda Pañha. A Kushan king of north India named Kanishka was also converted, and a council was held in Kashmir in about 100 ad. Greek Buddhists there recorded the Sutras on copper sheets which, unfortunately, were never recovered.

It is interesting to note that there is a saint in Orthodox Christianity named Josaphat, an Indian king whose story is essentially that of the Buddha. Josaphat is thought to be a distortion of the word bodhisattva.

Sri Lanka and Theravada
Emperor Ashoka sent one of his sons, Mahinda, and one of his daughters, Sanghamitta, a monk and a nun, to Sri Lanka (Ceylon) around the year 240 bc. The king of Sri Lanka, King Devanampiyatissa, welcomed them and was converted. One of the gifts they brought with them was a branch of the bodhi tree, which was successfully transplanted. The descendants of this branch can still be found on the island.

The fourth council was held in Sri Lanka, in the Aloka Cave, in the first century bc. During this time as well, and for the first time, the entire set of Sutras were recorded in the Pali language on palm leaves. This became Theravada's Pali Canon, from which so much of our knowledge of Buddhism stems. It is also called the Tripitaka (Pali: Tipitaka), or three baskets: The three sections of the canon are the Vinaya Pitaka (the monastic law), the Sutta Pitaka (words of the Buddha), and the Abhidamma Pitaka (the philosophical commentaries).

In a very real sense, Sri Lanka's monks may be credited with saving the Theravada tradition: Although it had spread once from India all over southeast Asia, it had nearly died out due to competition from Hinduism and Islam, as well as war and colonialism. Theravada monks spread their tradition from Sri Lanka to Burma, Thailand, Malaysia, Cambodia, and Laos, and from these lands to Europe and the west generally.

Mahayana began in the first century bc, as a development of the Mahasangha rebellion. Their more liberal attitudes toward monastic tradition allowed the lay community to have a greater voice in the nature of Buddhism. For better or worse, the simpler needs of the common folk were easier for the Mahayanists to meet. For example, the people were used to gods and heroes. So, the Trikaya (three bodies) doctrine came into being: Not only was Buddha a man who became enlightened, he was also represented by various god-like Buddhas in various appealing heavens, as well as by the Dharma itself, or Shunyata (emptiness), or Buddha-Mind, depending on which interpretation we look at -- sort of a Buddhist Father, Son, and Holy Ghost!

More important, however, was the increased importance of the Bodhisattva. A Bodhisattva is someone who has attained enlightenment, but who chooses to remain in this world of Samsara in order to bring others to enlightenment. He is a lot like a saint, a spiritual hero, for the people to admire and appeal to.

Along with new ideas came new scriptures. Also called Sutras, they are often attributed to Buddha himself, sometimes as special transmissions that Buddha supposedly felt were too difficult for his original listeners and therefore were hidden until the times were ripe. The most significant of these new Sutras are these:

Prajñaparamita or Perfection of Wisdom, an enormous collection of often esoteric texts, including the famous Heart Sutra and Diamond Sutra. The earliest known piece of printing in the world is, in fact, a copy of the Diamond Sutra, printed in China in 868 ad.

Suddharma-pundarika or White Lotus of the True Dharma, also often esoteric, includes the Avalokiteshwara Sutra, a prayer to that Bodhisattva.

Vimalakirti-nirdesha or Vimalakirti's Exposition, is the teachings of and stories about the enlightened householder Vimalakirti.

Shurangama-samadhi or Hero's Sutra, provides a guide to meditation, shunyata, and the bodhisattva. It is most popular among Zen Buddhists

Sukhavati-vyuha or Pure Land Sutra, is the most important Sutra for the Pure Land Schools of Buddhism. The Buddha tells Ananda about Amitabha and his Pure Land or heaven, and how one can be reborn there.

There are many, many others. Finally, Mahayana is founded on two new philosophical interpretations of Buddhism: Madhyamaka and Yogachara.

Madhyamaka means "the middle way." You may recall that Buddha himself called his way the middle way in his very first sermon. He meant, at that time, the middle way between the extremes of hedonistic pleasure and extreme asceticism. But he may also have referred to the middle way between the competing philosophies of
eternalism and annihilationism -- the belief that the soul exists forever and that the soul is annihilated at death. Or between materialism and nihilism.... An Indian monk by the name of Nagarjuna took this idea and expanded on it to create the philosophy that would be known as Madhyamaka, in a book called the Mulamadhyamaka-karika, written about 150 ad.

Basically a treatise on logical argument, it concludes that nothing is absolute, everything is relative, nothing exists on its own, everything is interdependent. All systems, beginning with the idea that each thing is what it is and not something else (Aristotle's law of the excluded middle), wind up contradicting themselves. Rigorous logic, in other words, leads one away from all systems, and to the concept of shunyata.

Shunyata means emptiness. This doesn't mean that nothing exists. It means that nothing exists in and of itself, but only as a part of a universal web of being. This would become a central concept in all branches of Mahayana. Of course, it is actually a restatement of the central Buddhist concepts of anatman, anitya, and dukkha!

The second philosophical innovation, Yogachara, is credited to two brothers, Asanga and Vasubandhu, who lived in India in the 300's ad. They elaborated earlier movements in the direction of the philosophy of idealism or chitta-matra. Chitta-matra means literally mind only. Asanga and Vasubandhu believed that everything that exists is mind or consciousness. What we think of as physical things are just projections of our minds, delusions or hallucinations, if you like. To get rid of these delusions, we must meditate, which for the Yogachara school means the creation of pure consciousness, devoid of all content. In that way, we leave our deluded individual minds and join with the universal mind, or Buddha-mind.

The last innovation was less philosophical and far more practical: Tantra. Tantra refers to certain writings which are concerned, not with philosophical niceties, but with the basic how-to of enlightenment, and not just with enlightenment in several rebirths, but enlightenment here-and-now!

In order to accomplish this feat, dramatic methods are needed, ones which, to the uninitiated, may seem rather bizarre. Tantra was the domain of the siddhu, the adept -- someone who knows the secrets, a magician in the ways of enlightenment. Tantra involves the use of various techniques, including the well-known mandalas, mantras, and mudras. mandalas are paintings or other representations of higher awareness, usually in the form of a circular pattern of images, which may provide the focus of one-pointed meditation. Mantras are words or phrases that serve the same purpose, such as the famous "Om mani padme hum." Mudras are hand positions that symbolize certain qualities of enlightenment.

Less well known are the yidams. A yidam is the image of a god or goddess or other spiritual being, either physically represented or, more commonly, imagined clearly in the mind's eye. Again, these represent archetypal qualities of enlightenment, and one-pointed meditation on these complex images lead the adept to his or her goal.

These ideas would have enormous impact on Mahayana. They are not without critics, however: Madhyamaka is sometimes criticized as word-play, and Yogachara is criticized as reintroducing atman, eternal soul or essence, to Buddhism. Tantra has been most often criticized, especially for its emphasis on secret methods and strong devotion to a guru. Nevertheless, these innovations led to a renewed flurry of activity in the first half of the first millenium, and provided the foundation for the kinds of Buddhism we find in China, Tibet, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, and elsewhere in east Asia.

Legend has it that the Chinese Emperor Ming Ti had a dream which led him to send his agents down the Silk Road -- the ancient trade route between China and the west -- to discover its meaning. The agents returned with a picture of the Buddha and a copy of the Sutra in 42 Sections. This Sutra would, in 67 ad, be the first of many to be translated into Chinese.

The first Buddhist community in China is thought to be one in Loyang, established by "foreigners" around 150 ad, in the Han dynasty. Only 100 years later, there emerges a native Chinese Sangha. And during the Period of Disunity (or Era of the Warring States, 220 to 589 ad), the number of Buddhist monks and nuns increase to as many as two million! Apparently, the uncertain times and the misery of the lower classes were fertile ground for the monastic traditions of Buddhism.



An early colony of Christians was started by the Apostle Thomas (the doubter)
Kodungallur, known as Musiris in the whole ancient world, and where St. Thomas the Apostle first landed in our India, was till the 15th century the "Rome" of India both as the centre of the Indian Church and as its gateway to world-trade through its famous harbour at the mouth of the river Periyar.

more to come as this gets more organized.Non-Indian religion arrived in India as early as the Quick Facts about: 8th century
Quick Summary not found for this subject8th century CE. During the following decades, significant numbers of Indians converted to Islam. A spotted record of kingship followed the influx of several Persian dynasties, some devastating the Hindu landscape and others encouraging halcyon days of coexistence between Muslims and Hindus. In the Quick Facts about: 1500s
Quick Summary not found for this subject1500s, the primary Mughal Empire was formed. Muslims contributed greatly to the cultural enhancement of an already rich Indian culture, shaping not only the shape of Northern Indian classical music (Hindustani, a melding of Indian and Middle Eastern elements) but encouraging a grand tradition of Urdu (a melding of Quick Facts about: Hindi
The most widely spoken of modern Indic vernaculars; spoken mostly in the north of India; along with English it is the official language of India; usually written in Devanagari scriptHindi, Quick Facts about: Arabic
The Semitic language of the Arabs; spoken in a variety of dialectsArabic and Persian languages) literature both religious and secular. Among other monuments, the Quick Facts about: Taj Mahal
Beautiful mausoleum at Agra built by the Mogul emperor Shah Jahan (completed in 1649) in memory of his favorite wifeTaj Mahal is a gift of the Mughals. As of 2001, there are about 130 million Muslims in India, most of whom live in the north and west of the country.

A form of the ancient Quick Facts about: Persia
An empire in southern Asia created by Cyrus the Great in the 6th century BC and destroyed by Alexander the Great in the 4th century BCPersian relgion Quick Facts about: Zoroastrianism
System of religion founded in Persia in the 6th century BC by Zoroaster; set forth in the Zend-Avesta; based on concept of struggle between light (good) and dark (evil)Zoroastrianism continues to be practiced in India, where its followers are called Parsis.
A believer or follower of IslamMuslim rulers in what is now modern-day

A theocratic islamic republic in the Middle East in western Asia; Iran was the core of the ancient empire that was known as Persia until 1935; rich in oil; involved in state-sponsored terrorismIran, Zoroastrian immigrants were granted protection under a Hindu king in the Western section of India many centuries ago.

SikhismQuick Facts about: Sikhism
The doctrines of a monotheistic religion founded in northern India in the 16th century by Guru Nanak and combining elements of Hinduism and IslamSikhism The only Indian originated monotheistic religion was founded in India's northwestern Quick Facts about: Punjab
A historical region on northwestern India and northern PakistanPunjab region about 400 years ago. As of 2001 there were 35 million Sikhs in India. Many of todays Sikhs are situated in Punjab,the Largest Quick Facts about: Sikh
An adherent of SikhismSikh Province in the world and the ancestral home of Sikhs. The most Famous Sikh Temple Is the Quick Facts about: Golden Temple
Quick Summary not found for this subjectGolden Temple it is located in Amritsar
Many Sikhs serve in the Indina army. The current prime minister of India is a Sikh, (when I was taking notes on this country)
Punjab is the spiritual home of Sikhs and is the only state in India where Sikhs form a Majority.
Last edited by JuliaSet on Wed Dec 06, 2006 7:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Posts: 1151
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 12:24 am
Location: US

Postby JuliaSet » Wed Dec 06, 2006 7:04 pm

Introduction: History
Please note that I have not "reinvented the wheel." The following text was gathered in patches, condensed from "Historic India" a Times Life Book. It seemed best, for quick addition, to take much text as it was, to pick and choose the parts which might give a shortened history of the time, and gather enough facts in historic order, while giving a feel for the civilization. The maps are copies from "An Historical Atlas of the Indian Peninsula" by Oxford Uni Press, written by C. Colin Davies.

The land that has accepted such a great variety of unlike immigrants is huge- a peninsula so large that is often called a subcontinent-but few lands have had to reconcile so many different racial strains, so many unlike social patterns and such a sheer multitude of people. By the end of the fourth century BC India's population had already reached 100 million. Many of these people were descendants of invaders: and in later centuries other invaders came to India. Quickly or slowly, all the invaders and all their descendants became parts of the mosaic of historic India.

Many new arrivals came form the Hindu Kush mountain passes. At first they encountered a hilly region of the Punjab. Traveling southeast, they found the land leveling out and saw the vast Indo-Gangetic plain, which sweeps across the subcontinent in a great arc that, like the mountains that lie to the north, measure 2,000 miles from west to east and 150 to 200 miles north to south.

They soon shed their cold weather clothes for a few garments of cotton. Once in the Indo-Gangetic plain, some migrants went southwestward along the Indus River and found themselves in the region call the Sind-- a cul-de-sac that is cut off from India;s heartland by the huge Thar Desert. Luckier ones moved southwestward, on the lush path that lies between the rambling Ganges river and the foot hills of the Himalayas. Continuing south westward, they would arrive at the Bay of Bengal, where the Ganges delta was eventually to provide the great natural ocean harbour of Calcutta.

Traveling south from the plain by an alternate route, some migrants followed the Chambal River to enter a different kind of land. They would be on the Deccan plateau, a harsh, infertile grassland sloping west to east and broken by scrub and clumps of trees.. East and west, at the borders of the Deccan, were more mountain ranges, the Ghats, so called for the passes (ghats) that penetrate them and narrow coastal plains. There the peninsula is shaped like an arrowhead, pointing south to the sea. The migrants who ventured south of the fertile Indo-Gangetic plain, whether just onto the high plateau or all the way to the coast, found themselves in a hostile world. This land was difficult to invade or control, just getting into it was not easy task: a jungle like river valley of the Narmada and a high escarpment, the Vindhya Mountains cut the Deccan off from the Indo Gangetic plain.

Once the invader reached the plateau, they faced new difficulties. The monsoon winds--cool and dry in the winter, drenching in the summer made either farming or herding a risky business. Only some straggling migrants continued southward through the Deccan, for innumerable rivers flowed from west to east across the land--rivers just wide enough to make the prospect of crossing look formidable.

Naturally enough most of the people who entered India at the northwest mt passes stopped north of the Deccan. South of the Deccan the land slopes downward to the sea, forming a low, temperate coastal plain. This is the land of the Dravidian people, whose ancestors were among the earliest migrants to India and whose physical characteristics and social customs still prevail.. Migrants from the north who later came to southern India never out numbered or overwhelmed the Dravidians.

By 1500BC, a long series of invasions had got under way. A main source of new peoples was Central Asia. India was always so strangely vulnerable to invasion, migrating people could come from anywhere and everywhere. From the north and from the west, Indo-Europeans, Persians, Scythians, Huns, Arabs, Turks, Mongols and uncountable others flowed in For thousands and thousands of years, migrants or marauders moved in and wandered to the fertile plains. Always pouring in were completely different kinds of people at completely different levels of culture. There were black and while and yellow races. There were nomads, traders and armies. There were large, refined societies with poets and troubadours, and there were tiny clans of still primitive root-grubbers. India found room for them all.

Hinduism did not absorb these people; it enfolded them. Any group with special customs could be dropped into India and, by living apart, live amicably side by side with those already there. The new group then became a caste of its own.

India's characteristic refusal to act as sort of a social blending-machine has always seemed peculiar to most non-Indian; to many her separation of groups and isolation of people by caste has seemed peculiarly inhuman, but the the caste system might have produced the only reasonable way for India to make an orderly process of growth. While inherently different groups could live their intimate lives distinctively and separately from the others, they could all at the same time contribute their work to the commonweal.

From the right and wildly heterogeneous mixture of people that is India burst repeated explosions of culture. Hindu art, literature and science made truly golden ages of the Mauryan Empire in the third century BC> Some 1200 years later, Muslim tradition, which was influenced but never overwhelmed by Hinduism- created yet another period of glory in the Mughal Empire. Iran's part in Indian History


In the Mauryan period the vitality of the Indian life is reflected in achievements in stone sculpture, as an art as old as the foundations of Hindus itself. Centuries later, during the Gupta period, the great religious sculpture of India, both Buddhist and Hindu, gave witness to Hinduism at its height. Gupta poetry and drama, written in India's classic Sanskrit language are considered peers of the finest Western literature, and it was Gupta science that the game the world the concept of zero and the so-called Arabic numerals.

In the time of the Mughal empire, India displayed an ability to combine its Hindu culture, which was by then ancient, with that of the Muslims, who for 8 centuries had been moving into the subcontinent. Cultural splendor is not the only product of India's diversity and separateness: political disunity has also been a constant and plaguing result. Hundreds of tiny states--kingdoms, principalities, the holdings of petty nobles-have proliferated to a degree that makes the fragmented Europe of medieval times seem positively monolithic.....

Archaeologists now know that the beginnings of civilization in India are nearly as old as civilization itself. About 4000 BC., soon after the appearance of farming communities in Mesopotamia, men in the northwest corner of India made the great transitionfrom nomadic hunting gathering to agriculture. West of the Indus River, on the hills of Baluchistan and the rim of the Iranian plateau, such men began to settle on the land. By 3000 BC, they had developed a primitive village culture, a culture of farmers who lived in mud huts and practiced the animalistic worship of natural objects and forces.

Then, in a great and unexplained advance, these people developed one of the earliest of the worlds great civilizations. Because the centers of this civilization were first found along the Indus River, some archaeologists call it the Indus Valley Civilization; other call it Harappan Culture, after one of its two capital cities. It flourished mightily for a thousand years from about 2500 BC to about 1500 BC, and then mysteriously disappeared.

This civilization covered a gigantic triangle with sides a thousand miles long. Archaeologists have found remains of more than 50 communities. To these communities came wheat, barely and a variety of fruits and earliest cultivated cotton in the world. The seaports were magnificently equipped: the port of Lothal, on the Gulf of Cambay, contained an enclosed brick shipping dock over 700 feet long, controlled by a sluice gate and capable of loading ships at low and high tides. At such ports Harappan traders dealt in gold and copper, turquoise and lapis lazuli, timber from the slopes of the Himalayas. Harappan ships sailed up the Persian Gulf to Mesopotamia, carrying Indian ivory and cotton to the age old cities of Agade and Ur,in the Tigris-Euphrates Valley. And all of the wealth of farming of the two capitals, the cities of Mojenjo Daro and Harappa.

Both were Masterpieces of urban planning, consisting of a rectangle three miles in circumference, dominated by a fortified citadel as high as a modern five-story building. The citadel, containing a huge granary, a hall for ceremonial assemblies, a public bath which might have been a ritual bath, was apparently the center of government and religion. Below it the city spread out in a rigidly mathematical gridiron patter , with avenues and streets running north and south, east and west. Solidly built brick houses, shops and restaurants lined the streets, with windowless walls facing the streets themselves, entrances on narrow lanes, and rooms graciously arranged around open interior courtyards. Even sanitary arrangements in these buildings, the most elaborate in the world of that time, speak of the sophistication of the Indus Valley technology. Indoor baths and privies were connected by a system of drains and water chutes to sewers running beneath the main streets. Presenting a picture of middle-class prosperity with zealous municipal controls.

In the arts, the people excelled in brilliantly decorated wheel-turned pottery and small, beautifully executed figurines. Mother-Goddess, a seated male divinity, a sacred bull and pipal tree, and imaginative secular figures.. Animals toys, etc.

The richest store of Indus artifacts was assembled by the merchant class for commercial ends.

Hinduism - The Vedic Period

Ravaging the country as they came, nomads put an end to the culture and set the course of all later Indian history. "Aryans", the noble ones, spoke a language used by great masses of barbarians who began to move out of the steppes of Central Asia about 2000 BC. Aryans introduced a pattern of life that was to persist for centuries. Intertribal warfare was common; temporary alliances must have been formed to attack the people of the Indus civilization. For such attacks, the Aryans flung themselves into battle on light, swift, horse-driven chariots, against people who had never seen anything faster than a bullock cart. Even the fortified citadels of the Indus cities succumbed to Aryan sieges.

The Aryans were wandering herdsmen. Their food and clothing came from cattle; cows and bulls were their measure of wealth; and though they eventually took to farming, they continued to feel that a man's dignity lay in his herds rather than in his crops. Such a people could not maintain or even comprehend a complex urban culture. Writing, craftsmanship, arts and architecture, these ornaments and achievements of the Indus Civilization died in Aryan hands. They did leave a great 'artifact', literature of the period which is a collection of religious writing, a set of scriptures. Aryan priests built up an exhaustive record of their religious beliefs and practices., Composed in a complex poetic style already perfected in pre-Indian days. And passed along by memorization and recitation. This record grew slowly for a thousand years. Its four great books, the Vedas, have given their name to that period of Indian history.

The earliest and most important of the four Vedic books, the Rig Veda, consists over a thousand hymns, a heterogeneous collection of prayer, instructions for ritual, incantations, poems on nature, and such secular songs as a gamblers lament of his luck at dice. The other three books, more specialized in content are the Yajur Veda, the Sama Veda, and the Atharva Veda, which consist respectively of technical instructions for the priests, ritual formulas and magic spells. They provide not dates, no dynasties, no wars or peace treaties, no events or series of events that a historian can place in any precise chronology.

The Vedas picture a people of enormous pride, utterly convinced of their own racial and social superiority, for the local peoples of India, the non-Aryans, they had nothing but contempt and overwhelming scorn. These conquered peoples were completely segregated, forced to live in clusters outside the Aryan village boundaries and banned from Aryan religious rites. This also extended to the social order......

Some time after they had learned enough about agriculture to grow crops of their own, the Aryans began to move deeper into India. Their route ran southeast to the middle of the Indo-Gangetic plain, the area of modern Delhi. From there, they probably conquers and colonized their way to the Ganges itself, then followed the river southward to settle the area around Banares (Varanasi). As many as 600 years had passed before the Aryans began to penetrate the Deccan.

During this time the Aryan tribes fought continually against each other and against the original inhabitants. The conquest of new lands and contacts with new people combined to bring profound changes to the Aryan way of life. Wandering tribes settled in small kingdoms; the tribal chiefs, once chosen by their peers, became power-hungry hereditary kings ruling from permanent capitals, And as kingdoms grew in territory and population, and the victors and vanquished fused,, the loose classes of Aryan society became more complex.

The kings claimed rank above all other nobles, the old class of the ordinary tribesmen, once the herdsmen among the original nomadic Aryans, became peaceful farmer, cattle breeders, artisans and tradesmen. Meanwhile the descendants of the non-Aryan peoples became a fourth class.

The greatest change of all took place among the priests, a change not so much of function as of status. In early Aryan society, the Priest class had held the second rank, below the nobles. Now they raised themselves up above the nobles, above the kings who had risen from the nobles class. They accomplished this feat by giving a new importance to religious ritual. They taught that if the rituals were not performed precisely, a catastrophe would ensue.. They became the most important creatures in their universe. Even the kings assented to the glorification to the priesthood.

By an odd coincidence in history, the Sixth Century BC was a century of remarkable intellectual discovery for nearly every ancient civilization. The answers they found in the Sixth Century BC, made India a center of religious creativity. They drew on existing body of sacred teaching, but went beyond these to found an important heterodox sect, Jainism, and a religion of world importance Buddhism, both of which interacted with the older religion of the Brahman priests to catalyze the development of the Hindu religion.

Perhaps so many stimulating ideas arose simultaneously in these far-flung lands because men communicated with one another through trade; perhaps the coinciding genius was due solely to chance. Changing social and economic conditions may have played a role in all these places. In many parts of India at this time the trade and agriculture were thriving, cities were growing, large kingdoms were superseding the rule of old tribal families. The rise of commerce brought height standard of living and with it time to think.

The final and most significant portion of the resulting literature is a collection of philosophical speculations. This portion, begun around 700 BC, and called the Upanishads, contained many of the themes that inspired the originators of Jainism and Buddhism and provided the religious foundation for Hinduism. These too were passed on orally by sages to pupils. The Upanishads probe into the nature of the universe and the human oul, and the relation of each to the other. IN proposing that the human soul is one with the Supreme Spirit, the Brahman priest who composed the Upanishads had in effect, deified mankind.

That idea had far reaching consequence, By the middle of the sixth century, other men besides the Brahmans had begun to engage in philosophical explorations, and when they did, they built on the foundations laid in the Upanishads. New cults were formed, and out of hundreds of cults, two survived to alter Brahman traditions and endure as independed and significant sects. They were Jainism and Buddhism.
more to follow..... as time permits.......
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Last edited by JuliaSet on Wed Dec 06, 2006 8:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Posts: 1151
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 12:24 am
Location: US

Postby JuliaSet » Wed Dec 06, 2006 9:10 pm

The founder of Jainism was a youth named Vardhamana. He was born about 540 BC into a setting of wealth, nobility and pride. His father was an Indian Lord, a powerful chieftain of the Jnatrika clan that lived south of Nepal. Vardhamana seems to have been drawn to asceticism early in his life, but to have resisted the call and lived in the manner of his aristocratic family until he was 30, when his parents died. Then he left home and all his worldly possessions to become a mendicant. He set out wearing one thin garment. Mahavira's(the great soul) regimen was harsh, but his teachings endured.


Siddhartha Gautama, like Mahavira, was the son of a lord of a tribe that lived in the foothills of the Himalayan Mountains. He was born sometime in the Sixth century BC. From that point on, legends take over.

As the son of a rich nobleman, he lived in a royal manner. He had the run of three palaces the entertainment of numerous dancing girls and a herd of elephants decked in silver ornaments. At 16 he married, but in his twenties, he was apparently stirred by a sort of divine discontent. The first discovery the Buddha made was that all men were born to suffer, and by meditation, could release oneself from earthly bonds... attaining Nirvana, the ultimate release from rebirth. (We might use this in the first MOD, as when the single city is destroyed, you are reborn within another of your factions protective area, and can start over.. from zero!)

Mauryan Dynasty


Chandragupta (322-301)
Bindusara (301-269)
Ashoka (269-232)
Kunala (232-225)
Dasaratha (232-225)
Samprati (225-215)
Salisuka (215-202)
Devadharma (202-195)
Satamdhanu (195-187)
Brihadratha (187-185)

Some time around the year 320 BC, a young Indian warrior-king named Chandragupta Maurya set out to build an empire. He rose from ordinary people, and not from the nobility. During his lifetime, he extended his power from a bast in the central Ganges Valley east and west to the farthest limits of the Indo_Gangeic plain. His descendants, the emperor of the Mauryan Dynasty, held sway of still vaster areas, at his height, the Mauryan Empire was the first great Indian empire of historic times.

The western regions had a very different history from that of northeast India. In 531 BC, Cyrus the Great, the founder of the Persian empire, led an invading army across the Hindu Kush mountains in into India; by 518 one of his successors, Darius I had conquered the Indus Valley and the Punjab. Through these military victories, the northwest India became a province of the Persian Empire. For nearly 200 years the Persians ruled the region with an iron hand. According to the Greek historian Herodutus, that satrapy paid more tribute to Persian than any other division of the empire, and a contingent of Indian troops served under the Persian emperor Xerxes in his invasion of Greece in 479 BC. On the other hand, the peoples of northern India gained something from the Persian occupation. Sophisticated Persian styles in art and architecture were influential throughout the region. It was an educational center to which came well born young men from such Indian kingdoms as the expansionist policies of Magadha were inspired by the Persian example.

It was not the Indians, however, who ended Persian rule in the area. In 331 BC, the Macedonian conqueror, Alexander the Great won a crucial victory against Persian forces near the Tigris river. Having destroyed Persian power at its source, Alexander drove eastward, and in 327 entered India to take possession of the Persian territorial there. His troops fought their way into the northwest, defeating both Persian and native Indian forces and planting settlements as they came. For a moment in history of Northwest India, it seemed that one foreign ruler would be permanently replaced by another.

Within two years, Alexander had left India and in 323, with his dream of ruling the world completely shattered, he died in Babylon, far to the west. It was the Indian subcontinent itself that defeated the would-be world conqueror. Alexander had come to India with the false notion that the subcontinent was a small peninsula, with its farther shore only a short distance beyond the Indus Rive. Once he crossed the Indus, however, he realized that unknown immensity's lay before him. What was more important, his troops, wearied in battles against local Indian forces, and terrified bye tales of fierce people and beast, refused to go farther.

Returning to Babylon, it weakened his army and broke his power. Alexander's departure created a great military and political vacuum. The small outposts and garrisons left behind by the Macedonians soon withered away and the Indian kings of the northwest, who had held no real power for centuries, were too weak to take command. A power vacuum had been formed and Chandragupta Maurya was eager to fill it. He assumed the Magadhan throne about two years after Alexander's retreat from Indian and began almost at once to move in on the northwest.

Within a decade, Chandragupta made himself master of the Punjab and the Indus Valley. In 305 BC. he met and defeated Seleucus Nicator, a successor of Alexander's who was attempting to recover the dead emperor's Indian province. Instead of regaining lost lands, Selucus had to give up lands of his own in the mountainous northwest- Baluchistan, and the regions of Kabul, Kandahar and Herat in what is not Afghanistan. Legends also suggest that he also gave his daughter to Chandragupta in marriage, while the Indian ruler made a regal gift of 500 elephants to the man he had defeated.

Chandragupta was now an emperor, rather than a king. From his capital at Pataliputra, on the site of the present day city of Patna, in north east India, he ruled an empire that included the plains of the Indus and Ganges River and the high country of the northwest. His son extended the borders southward, deep into the Deccan plateau and as far down the western coast as modern Mysore.

Ashoka, Chandragupta's grandson and third king of the dynasty brought the empire to its height.

The spy system was a gigantic secret service that both funneled information to the emperor and carried out his secret orders. The imperial army was magnificently equipped. At its height, it numbered 700,000, men with 9,000 elephants and 10,000 chariots. According to Megasthenes, its operations were supervised by a central War Council of 30 officials, who held responsibility for everything from food and transport to the maintenance of the proper servants to beat drums, carry gongs and perform a host of military ceremonies. It was reported that the troops had an easy time when not on the battlefield.

If Chandragupta represented the promise of an golden age, his grandson, the Emperor Ashoka, brought that promise to fulfillment. For the first time the state was led by a man who preached goodness, gentleness and non-violence.and who based his own policies on a high ethical code. By his example and actions, the emperor proved himself, the greatest and noblest ruler India had known till that time. This was suggested by the inscriptions in sites around the country. Taken together the edicts constitute and extraordinary revelation of the thoughts and decision of a great man.

But the edicts are the fruits of Ashoka's maturity. In his early years he seems to have let the conventional military and political apprenticeship of a potential heir to the throne. His accession to the throne, was violent. His great military achievement called Kalinga, on India's east coast, was bloody and merciless. The Kalinga campaign of 261 BC, proved to be a turning point in Ashoka's life. It was his last war. He became remorseful for the cruelties he inflicted. The emperor was converted to Buddhism.

During his reign, a council of theologians met at Pataliputra to codify the Buddhist canon, the laws and principle of a new formal religion. He made Buddhism a missionary faith. He sent emissaries to Egypt, Macedonia and the Near East, hoping in vain to convert them. He was more successful at home as Buddhism spread thorough India... though it never became the dominant religion and his son, converted the king of Ceylon. From there Buddhism spread to the lands of southeast Asia. Where it was to remain strong to the present time.

Less than 50 years after the Emperor's death, in 232 BC, the Mauryan Empire fell. His descendants quarreled over the succession and provincial governors revolted and gained independence for their regions. The Mauryan army lost its vigor and combativeness, and was not longer able to defend the empire against invasion or to control the native populations. Buddhist ideals no longer inspired government policy and the priestly Brahman class, once more advisers to kings, reasserted the old intolerance, the old belief in the separation of people.

"All sects deserve reverence for one reason or another, By thus acting, a man exalts his own sect and at the same time does service to the sect of other people." ... Ashoka

More to come with maps of cities and areas.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Last edited by JuliaSet on Thu Dec 07, 2006 12:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

Posts: 477
Joined: Tue Jan 25, 2005 10:08 am
Location: Bangkok

Postby Spearthrower » Thu Dec 07, 2006 4:19 am

Wow JuliaSet that is a *lot* of information! It was a very pleasurable read though and I learned quite a few things from it! It definitely presents a somewhat clearer picture of the daily life and cosmology of the average person.... and sets it against the backdrop of the larger influx of political and ethnical diversity.

I'm going to have another read through later, but for now I have been staring at the screen too long! ;)

Posts: 1151
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 12:24 am
Location: US

Postby JuliaSet » Thu Dec 07, 2006 4:34 am

OOo Spearthrower, I thought no one was interested any more. Thanks..


Kujula Kadphises (20BC-30AD)
Wima (30-80)
Welma Kadphises (80-103)
Kanishka I (103-127)
Vasishka I (127-131)
Huvishka I (130-162)
Vasudeva I (162-200)
Kanishka II (200-220)
Vasishka II (220-230)
Kanishka III (230-240)
Vasudeva II (240-260)
Vasu ( )
Chhu ( )
Shaka ( )
Kipanada ( )
Under the rule of the Kushans, northwest India and adjoining regions participated both in seagoing trade and in commerce along the Silk Road to China. The name Kushan derives from the Chinese term Guishang, used in historical writings to describe one branch of the Yuezhi—a loose confederation of Indo-European people who had been living in northwestern China until they were driven west by another group, the Xiongnu, in 176–160 B.C. The Yuezhi reached Bactria (northwest Afghanistan and Tajikistan) around 135 B.C. Kujula Kadphises united the disparate tribes in the first century B.C. Gradually wresting control of the area from the Scytho-Parthians, the Yuezhi moved south into the northwest Indian region traditionally known as Gandhara (now parts of Pakistan and Afghanistan) and established a capital near Kabul. They had learned to use a form of the Greek alphabet, and Kujula's son was the first Indian ruler to strike gold coins in imitation of the Roman aureus exchanged along the caravan routes.

The rule of Kanishka, the third Kushan emperor who flourished from the late first to the early/mid-second century A.D., was administered from two capitals: Purushapura (now Peshawar) near the Khyber Pass, and Mathura in northern India. Under Kanishka's rule, at the height of the dynasty, Kushan controlled a large territory ranging from the Aral Sea through areas that include present-day Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, and Pakistan into northern India as far east as Benares and as far south as Sanchi. It was also a period of great wealth marked by extensive mercantile activities and a flourishing of urban life, Buddhist thought, and the visual arts.

The Gandhara region at the core of the Kushan empire was home to a multiethnic society tolerant of religious differences. Desirable for its strategic location, with direct access to the overland silk routes and links to the ports on the Arabian Sea, Gandhara had suffered many conquests and had been ruled by the Mauryans, Alexander the Great (327/26–325/24 B.C.), his Indo-Greek successors (third–second centuries B.C.), and a combination of Scythians and Parthians (second–first centuries B.C.). The melding of peoples produced an eclectic culture, vividly expressed in the visual arts produced during the Kushan period. Themes derived from Greek and Roman mythologies were common initially, while later, Buddhist imagery dominated: some of the first representations of the Buddha in human form date to the Kushan era, as do the earliest depictions of bodhisattvas.

The Deccan and the South

During the Kushana Dynasty, an indigenous power, the Satavahana Kingdom (first century B.C.-third century A.D.), rose in the Deccan in southern India. The Satavahana, or Andhra, Kingdom was considerably influenced by the Mauryan political model, although power was decentralized in the hands of local chieftains, who used the symbols of Vedic religion and upheld the varnashramadharma . The rulers, however, were eclectic and patronized Buddhist monuments, such as those in Ellora (Maharashtra) and Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh). Thus, the Deccan served as a bridge through which politics, trade, and religious ideas could spread from the north to the south.

Farther south were three ancient Tamil kingdoms -- Chera (on the west), Chola (on the east), and Pandya (in the south) -- frequently involved in internecine warfare to gain regional supremacy. They are mentioned in Greek and Ashokan sources as lying at the fringes of the Mauryan Empire. A corpus of ancient Tamil literature, known as Sangam (academy) works, including Tolkappiam , a manual of Tamil grammar by Tolkappiyar, provides much useful information about their social life from 300 B.C. to A.D. 200. There is clear evidence of encroachment by Aryan traditions from the north into a predominantly indigenous Dravidian culture in transition.

Dravidian social order was based on different ecoregions rather than on the Aryan varna paradigm, although the Brahmans had a high status at a very early stage. Segments of society were characterized by matriarchy and matrilineal succession -- which survived well into the nineteenth century -- cross-cousin marriage, and strong regional identity. Tribal chieftains emerged as "kings" just as people moved from pastoralism toward agriculture, sustained by irrigation based on rivers, small-scale tanks (as man-made ponds are called in India) and wells, and brisk maritime trade with Rome and Southeast Asia.

Discoveries of Roman gold coins in various sites attest to extensive South Indian links with the outside world. As with Pataliputra in the northeast and Taxila in the northwest (in modern Pakistan), the city of Madurai, the Pandyan capital (in modern Tamil Nadu), was the center of intellectual and literary activities. Poets and bards assembled there under royal patronage at successive concourses and composed anthologies of poems, most of which have been lost. By the end of the first century B.C., South Asia was crisscrossed by overland trade routes, which facilitated the movements of Buddhist and Jain missionaries and other travelers and opened the area to a synthesis of many cultures.

Gupta Dynasty

Gupta (275-300)
Ghatotkacha (300-320)
Chandra Gupta I (320-335)
Samudra Gupta (335-370)
Rama Gupta (370-375)
Chandra Gupta II (375-415)
Kumara Gupta I (415-455)
Skanda Gupta (455-467)
Kumara Gupta II (467-477)
Budha Gupta (477-496)
Chandra Gupta III (496-500)
Vainya Gupta (500-515)
Narasimha Gupta (510-530)
Kumara Gupta III (530-540)
Vishnu Gupta (540-550)
The renaissance of Indian culture took place during 320 and 467 AD. when a dynasty called the Guptas ruled the northern part of the subcontinent. During those years peace, prosperity and material well-being prevailed to a degree unmatched in India before or since. Hindu literature, sculpture and painting, architecture and science reached creative peaks. At the time, it was perhaps the happiest regions of the world. It was 500 years in the making, years of confusion and apparent aimlessness while India rested before the next outburst of creative activity. The first outburst had been the Mauryan Empire, which united nearly all of India during the Third century BC. During the centuries after Mauryan unity, disunity was the rule, and northern India spilt into pugnacious small kingdoms and independent dynasties. Contributing to the internal disorder were waves of invasions from Persia, Afghanistan and Central Asia, but while the invader intensified India's chaos, they also made important contributions to her future development.

The first invaders, in the second century BC, were Greeks from Bactria, in Central Asia north of the Hindu Kush, where generals of Alexander the Great had founded kingdoms. Then came people known as Shakas, or Scythians, for the same Oxus River regions, and Parthian, or Phlava, who probably migrated from the Iranian plateau. Still later invaders were the Kushans, descendants of Central Asian nomads who had been forced from their native land to Bactria after the building of the Great Wall of China.

Each of these groups came to stay, displacing local authorities and earlier invaders to carve out north Indian kingdoms of greater or lesser importance.

The Shakas established themselves in the northwest, where they built up and controlled a lucrative overland trade with Central Asia. The Bactrian Greeks helped to develop a maritime trade between India, Persia and Arabia.
Maues ( )
Vonones (30 BC)
Azes I ( )
Azes II ( )
Gudnaphar (19-45 AD)

In southern India, the invaders never penetrated. Southern India remained an area apart through all the centuries of northern turmoil. Mauryan control had never been strong in the south; even during the reign of the great Mauryan emperor Ahsoka, the extreme south boasted of three completely independent kingdoms The Cholans, the Pandayas, and the Cheras--and these kingdoms remained independent. The people there were not Aryans but descended from the Dravidians, who had lived in this part of the world from prehistoric times. Their language was Tamil and was unrelated to northern languages. Southern political, economic and religious traditions were consequently different from the north, and the history of "Tamil land" tended to be quite separate from that of Aryan India. From the time of the Mauryan Empire to the end of the 14th Century, the south for the most part went its own way.

In the north each of the successive waves of invaders left its mark on India., But only one of the many groups arriving in the centuries between the Mauryan and Gupta Empires was able to establish and extensive and durable kingdom. There people were the Kushans, who after crossing the Hindu Kush in the First Century AD, occupied lands in the Punjab, quickly expanded their territorial to include most of the northwest, and held sway over the region for almost 200 years. The Kushans were memorable for more than political power, for during their rule and the years immediately following, religion, both Buddhism and Hinduism underwent significant changes.

The Kingdom Of Samatata (Under The Rule Of Gupta Empire)

Posts: 1151
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 12:24 am
Location: US

Postby JuliaSet » Thu Dec 07, 2006 4:42 am

The Kingdom Of Samatata (Under The Rule Of Gupta Empire)

After the decline of the Mauryan Empire the eastern portion of Bengal became the kingdom of Samatata; although politically independent, it was a tributary state of the Indian Gupta Empire (A.D. ca. 319-ca. 540).

The Rule Of Sasanka, The Harsha Empire And The Age long Anarchy

The third great empire was the Harsha Empire (A.D. 606-47), which drew Samatata into its loosely administered political structure. Under Harsha Vardhana (or Harsha, r. 606-47), North India was reunited briefly, but neither the Guptas nor Harsha controlled a centralized state, and their administrative styles rested on the collaboration of regional and local officials for administering their rule rather than on centrally appointed personnel. The Gupta period marked a watershed of Indian culture: the Guptas performed Vedic sacrifices to legitimize their rule, but they also patronized Buddhism, which continued to provide an alternative to Brahmanical orthodoxy.

The most significant achievements of this period, however, were in religion, education, mathematics, art, and Sanskrit literature and drama. The religion that later developed into modern Hinduism witnessed a crystallization of its components: major sectarian deities, image worship, devotionalism, and the importance of the temple. Education included grammar, composition, logic, metaphysics, mathematics, medicine, and astronomy. These subjects became highly specialized and reached an advanced level.

The Indian numeral system -- sometimes erroneously attributed to the Arabs, who took it from India to Europe where it replaced the Roman system -- and the decimal system are Indian inventions of this period. Aryabhatta's expositions on astronomy in 499, moreover, gave calculations of the solar year and the shape and movement of astral bodies with remarkable accuracy. In medicine, Charaka and Sushruta wrote about a fully evolved system, resembling those of Hippocrates and Galen in Greece. Although progress in physiology and biology was hindered by religious injunctions against contact with dead bodies, which discouraged dissection and anatomy, Indian physicians excelled in pharmacopoeia, caesarean section, bone setting, and skin grafting.

The Pala Dynasty

The disunity following the demise of this short-lived empire allowed a Buddhist chief named Gopala to seize power as the first ruler of the Pala Dynasty (A.D. 750-1150). He and his successors provided Bengal with stable government, security, and prosperity while spreading Buddhism throughout the state and into neighboring territories. Trade and influence were extensive under Pala leadership, as emissaries were sent as far as Tibet and Sumatra.

The Sena Dynasty

The Senas, orthodox and militant Hindus, replaced the Buddhist Palas as rulers of a united Bengal until the Turkish conquest in 1202. Opposed to the Brahmanic Hinduism of the Senas with its rigid caste system, vast numbers of Bengalis, especially those from the lower castes, would later convert to Islam.


Arm (1210-1211)
Iltutmish Shams (1211-1236)
Firuz I (1236)
Radiyya Begum (1236-1240)
Bahram (1240-1242)
Mas'ud (1242-1246)
Mahmud I (1246-1266)
Balban Ulugh (1266-1287)
Kay Qubadh (1287-1290)
Kayumarth (1290)
Firuz II Khalji (1290-1296)
Ibrahim I Qadir (1296)
Muhammad I Ali (1296-1316)
Umar (1316)
Mubarak (1316-1320)
Khusraw Barwari (1320)
Tughluq I (1320-1325)
Muhammad II (1325-1351)
Firuz III (1351-1388)
Tughluq II (1388-1389)
Abu Bakr (1389-1391)
Muhammad III (1389-1394)
Sikandar I (1394)
Mahmud II (1394-1395)
Nusrat (1395-1399)

History of Rajasthan
The north-western region of India, which incorporates Rajasthan, remained in early history for the most part independent from the great empires consolidating their hold onthe subcontinent. Buddhism failed to make substantial inroads here; the Mauryan Empire (321-184 BC), whose most renowned emperor Ashoka converted to Buddhism in262 BC, had minimal impact in Rajasthan. However, there are Buddhist caves and stupas (Buddhist shrines) at Jhalawar, in southern Rajasthan. Ancient Hindu scriptural epics make reference to sites in present day Rajasthan. The holy pilgrimage site of Pushkar is mentioned in both the Mahabharata and Ramayma.

The fall of the Gupta Empire, which held dominance in northern India for nearly 300 years, until the early 5th century, was followed by a period of instability as various local chieftains sought to gain supremacy. Various powers rose and fell in northern India. Stability was only restored with the emergence of the Gurjara Pratihar as, the earliest of the Rajput (from 'Rajputra', or Sons of Princes) dynasties which were later to hold the balance of power throughout Rajasthan. The emergence of the Rajput warrior clans in the 6th and 7th centuries played the greatest role in the subsequent history of Rajasthan. From these clans emerged the name Rajputana, by which the collection of princely states came to be known during the Muslim invasion of India. The Sisodias of the Suryavansa Race, originally from Gujarat, migrated to Rajas-than in the mid-7th century and reigned over Mewar, which encompassed Udaipur and Chittorgarh.The Kachhwa has, originally from Gwalior in Madhya Pradesh, travelled west in the12th century. They built the massive fortress at Amber, the capital later being shifted to Jaipur. Like the Sisodias, they belonged to the Suryavansa Race. Also belonging to the Suryavansa Race, the Rathores (earlier known as Rastrakutas) travelled from Kanauj, in Uttar Pradesh. Initially they settled in Pali, south of present-day Jodhpur, but later moved to Mandore in1381 and ruled over Marwar (Jodhpur). Later they commenced construction on the stunning Meherangarh Fort at Jodhpur. The Bhattis, who belong to the Induvansa Race, driven from their homeland in the Punjab by the Turks, installed themselves at Jaisalmer in 1156. They remained more or less entrenched in their desert kingdom until they were integrated into the state of Rajasthan following Independence.

The first external threat to the dominance of the Rajputs was that posed by the Arabs who took over Sind in 713. The Gurjara Pratiharas' response to the Arab threat was largely defensive. The Arabs were repulsed by the Gurjara Pratiharas led by their king, Nagabhata I, founder of the Pratihara Empire. The Arabs also tested their strength against the Rastrakut as. Unfortunately, when not pitting their wits against the Arabs, the Pratiharas and Rastrakut as were busy fighting each other. By the third decade of the 8th century, anew threat was emerging in the form of the Turks, who had occupied Ghazni in Afghanistan. Around 1001 AD, Mahmud of Ghazni's army descended upon India, destroying infidel temples and carrying off everything of value that could be moved. The Rajputs were not immune from these incursions; a confederation of Rajput rulers assembled a vast army and marched northwards to meet the advancing Turks. Unfortunately, how-ever, it was a case of too little, too late, and they were decisively and crushingly vanquished. The Pratiharas, then centred at Kanauj, fled the city before the Turks arrived, and in their absence the temples of Kanauj, as with so many others in northern India, were sacked and desecrated, Towards the end of the 12th century, Mohammed of Ghori invaded India to take up where Mahmud of Ghazni had left off. Hemet with a collection of princely states which failed to mount a united front. Although initially repulsed, Ghori later triumphed, and Delhi and Ajmer were lost to the Muslims. Ajmer remained a Muslim stronghold over the centuries, apart from a brief period when it was retaken by the Rathores. Today it is an important Muslim place of pilgrimage.

Mohammed of Ghori was killed in 1206, and his successor, Qutb-ud-din, became the first of the Sultans of Delhi. Within 20 years, the Muslims had brought the whole of the Ganges basin under their control. In 1297, Ala-ud-din Khilji pushed the Muslim borders south into Gujarat. Ala-ud-din mounted a protracted siege of the massive fort at Ranthambhore, which was at the time ruled by the Rajput chief Hammir Deva. Hammir was reported as dead (although it's unknown if he did actually die in the siege) and upon hearing of their chief's demise, the womenfolk of the fortress collectively threw themselves on a pyre, thus performing the first instance of jauhar, or collective sacrifice, in the history of the Rajputs. Alu-ud-din later went on to sack the fortress at Chittorgarh in 1303, held by the Sisodia clan. According to tradition, Alu-ud-din had heard repute of the great beauty of Padmini, the consort of the Sisodian chief, and resolved to carry her off with him. Like Ranthambhore before it, Chittorgarh also fell to the Muslim leader.

The Delhi sultanate weakened at the beginning of the 16th century, and the Rajputs took advantage of this to restore and expand their territories. At this time the kingdom of Mewar, ruled by the Sisodias under the leadership of Rana Sangram Singh, gained preeminence among the Rajput states. Under this leader, Mewar pushed its boundaries far beyond its original territory, posing a formidable threat to the new Mughal Empire which was emerging under the leadership of Babur (reigned 1527-30). Babur, a descendent of both Timur and Genghis Khan, marched into Punjab from his capital at Kabul in Afghanistan in 1525and defeated the Sultan of Delhi at Panipat. He then focused his attention on the Rajput princely states, many of whom, anticipating his designs, had banded together to form a united front under Rana Sangram Singh. Unfortunately, when the inevitable confrontation took place, the Rajputs were defeated by Babur. They sustained great losses, with many Rajput chiefs falling in the fray, including Rana Sangram Singh himself, who reputedly had no less than 80 wound son his body suffered during both this and previous campaigns. The defeat shook the very foundations of the princely states. Mewar's confidence was shattered by the death of its illustrious leader, and its territories contracted following sub-sequent attacks by the Sultan of Gujarat, At this time Marwar, under its ruler Maldeo, emerged as the strongest of the Rajput states, and it recorded a victory against the claimant to the Mughal throne, Sher Shah. However, none of the Rajputs was able to withstand the formidable threat posed by the most renowned of the Mughal emperors, Akbar (reigned 1556-1605).Recognising that the Rajputs could not be conquered by mere force alone, Akbar contracted a marriage alliance with a princess of the important Kachhwaha clan who held Amber (and later founded Jaipur). The Kachhwahas, unlike their other Rajputbrethren at the time, aligned themselves with the powerful Mughals, and even sent troops to aid them in times of battle. Akbar also used more conventional methods to assert, his dominance over the Rajputs, wresting Ajmer from the Rathores of Marwar which had been briefly restored to the Rajputs under Maldeo. All the import-ant Rajput states eventually acknowledged Mughal sovereignty and became vassal states of the Mughal Empire, except Mewar, which fiercely clung to its independence, refusing to pay homage to the infidels. An uneasy truce was thus maintained between the Rajputs and the Mughal emperors, until the reign of Aurangzeb, the last great Mughal emperor, when relations were characterized by mutual hostility. Aurangzeb devoted his resources to extending the empire's boundaries. The punitive taxes which he levied on his subjects to pay for his military exploits and his religious zealotry eventually secured his downfall. The Rajputs were united in their opposition to Aurangzeb, and the Rathores and Sisodias raised arms against him. It didn't take long for revolts by the enemies of Aurangzeb to break out on all sides and, with his death in 1707, the Mughal Empire's for-tunes rapidly declined.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

Posts: 1151
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 12:24 am
Location: US

Postby JuliaSet » Thu Dec 07, 2006 4:44 am

Now It is time to see some research for the American Civs.. Anyone out there with some info? I'm affraid I don't have time to do it.

Posts: 230
Joined: Wed Aug 24, 2005 8:37 pm

Postby reachrishikh » Thu Dec 07, 2006 7:00 pm

JuliaSet wrote:OOo Spearthrower, I thought no one was interested any more. Thanks.

Heck, I've been reading it with great interest ever since you started it yesterday. Only I didn't find anything to say for the moment. Don't worry, you're efforts are not being wasted.
I'm sure everyone who's interested in this idea will find your research very helpful and informative.
<goes back to reading the newer stuff she's posted since yesterday>

Posts: 1151
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 12:24 am
Location: US

Postby JuliaSet » Thu Dec 07, 2006 7:17 pm

What is missing is more detail about military, era related, costumes of eras, and pictures of buildings. Those are needed for artists. Thanks Reach'

If someone wants to make a similar start for the Maya/Aztec/Inca, we might proove the possiblity of doing such a game theme.

It still is up to $ marketing $ to ok such projects. They get the final word, it seems... Who would buy such a game with these themes?

some info on trading, guns, etc. ... ndian.html This one states gunpowder arrived from China in the 13th century from China, and the 15th cent from Europe. My guess this period would be the outermost date for the end of the game.
pictures of some weapons
Last edited by JuliaSet on Thu Dec 07, 2006 10:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Posts: 1151
Joined: Mon May 17, 2004 12:24 am
Location: US

Postby JuliaSet » Mon Dec 11, 2006 7:15 pm

Here's a little science behind mantras and mandalas! Thanks Hathornefer, for the link.. I'd seen this before as a subject, but not on that site before.
"Om" gets its own specific pattern. I think it was a circle, but have forgotten the details since my study of meditation is 20 years old, before I started computing.

Return to “The Tilted Mill”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests