Indian Historical Period Essay

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The Early Historic Period was a period of change. It began in the 6th century BCE, a time often considered to be a turning point in early Indian history. This is so, because, for the very first time in Ancient India, we witness the emergence of several known political entities known as the mahajanapadas. The mahajanapadas were kingdom states that covered greater parts of Northern India and through them, social, political and cultural complexities began to tangibly take shape. The period under question also marks the second urbanization in Indian history. In the following paragraphs, I will elaborate under separate sub-sections different aspects of the socio-political changes witnessed during this time. This period also bore witness to the rise of new religions and ideologies, challenging the infallibility of Brahmanical superiority and Vedic tradition. All of this was perhaps fuelled by the material conditions of the time in which the society was transitioning from a clan based pastoral…show more content…
Kasi was the first of the sixteen to attain political distinction and the Mahavagga, a volume of the second book of the Theravadin Vinaya Pitaka (a Buddhist text), gives us the impression that its rise to power was at the cost of its neighbour Kosala. However, with the accession of a ruler named Prasenjit in Kosala, Kasi was defeated and Kosala gained what it had lost earlier on. At the same time, to the west was the state of Vatsa under King Udayana who had an intense rivalry with king Pradyota of Avanti. Both these states were also very powerful. Magadha arose in this context and it is believed that it only became important in the 6th century BCE. Bimbisara, the founder of the Haryanka dynasty of Magadha who took it to heights of power. Before that, a Jataka story implies that Magadha may have been in fact inferior to Anga. The conquest of Anga by Bimbisara marked the beginning of the rise of the most powerful

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