25 March 2016

Sources of the Indian History

Indian History

Sources of the Indian History

  • About 4500 years ago earliest cities were found around River Indus.
  • About 2500 years ago Cities were found around the River Ganga.
  • The area south to River Ganga is Magadha.
  • About 2500 years ago Iraninans and Greeks came to India.
  • The people in the past moved from one place to another place for different reasons like fook, livelihood and also to escape natural disasters.

The name INDIA

Our country has different names like, Hind, Hindusthan, Bharatvarsha, Aryavart, India or Bharath. We derive the name INDIA from the River Indus, which means Sindhu in Sanskrit. Iraninans and Greeks called Hindos or Indos.

Sources of the Indian History

We can know the history from the Manuscripts and inscriptions. There are some site from the past which will help us to know our pasts. These sites are of three types:
  1. Habitation sites
  2. Factory sites
  3. Habitation cum factory sites
Now we will know six sources of Indian history
  1. Religious literature:

    • These are nothing but the religious or the spiritual texts that convey our pasts.
    • Vedas → They will tell us about the social life of Aryans, and their struggle with Dushyas.
    • Ramayana and Mahabharatha → our epics, tells the story of the kings and people of their respective ages.
    • Tripitakas → These are the Buddhist religious texts, that show the important events and social life of their time.
    • Jatakas and Nikayas → Give us the social history between 600 BC and 400 AD.
    • Angas → These are the Jain religious texts.
  2. Traditions - The Purans:

    •  The eighteen Puranas form an important source of history.
    • They provide the information about the royal families.
    • They are a mixture of Mythology, Tradition and History.
    • They provided material to bring into light, Epics to Mauryas, the Ceylonese tradition of Buddhists, Jain storie about Chandraagupte and Samprati.
  3. Secular and historical literature:

    •  These are nothing but the books that are non religious.
    • Some important texts
      • Vishakadatta's → Mudrarakshasa
      • Bana's → Harsha Charita
      • Chand Bardai's → Prithvi Raj Raso
      • Kalhana's → Rajatarangini
      • Bilhana's → Vikrama Charitha
      • Bhallala's → Bhoj Prabandha
      • Patanjali's → Grammar
      • Chanukya's → Arthasathra
      • Kalidas's → Dramas
  4. The evidence of Foreigners

    •  Foreign writers who visited the India in the past also contribute more to the sources of our history.
    • Greek Writers: 

      • Heredotus
      • Megasthenes → lived in the court of Chandragupta Maurya; He wrote the book 'Indica'
      • Arrian
      • Ptolemy
  5. Chinese Buddhist writers:

    •  They form the basis of our history between the 4th and the 7th centuries AD.
      • Fahein → wrote about the Guptas
      • Hiuen Tsang → wrote about Harsha
      • I-Tsing → wrote about the later Hindu Period
      • Alberuni's → 'Tekik-i-Hini', describes about the history of the 11th century
      • Taranath → he is a Tibet writer, he gave account of some Buddhist Kings.
  6.  Archeological Evidence

    1. Monuments

      •  Monuments are Ruins of the cities evacuated in India.
      • The most important such remains are:
        • Harappa
        • Mohenjadaro
        • Taxila
        • Pataliputra
        • Devagam
        • Bitrigaon
        • Cambodia
    2. Inscriptions

      • Inscriptions are found on Ashokan Pillar, Allahabad Pillar, Udayagiri caves and copper plates; these provided reliable information for the study of information of their respective periods.
    3. Coins

      • These provide historical information.
      • The Samudragupta's character and career has been primarily has been primarily built up from his coins.

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