History of India: An Overview
Archaeological excavations and historical sites in Bhimbetka in Madhya Pradesh, Kurnool in Andhra Pradesh, Chotanagpur Plateau in central India and Belan in Uttar Pradesh among others have discovered stone and metal tools to suggest early human settlement in India during the prehistoric times.
Indian History Through Ages
The prehistoric period in India
which was followed by the ancient period marks the beginning of the first urban civilisation of India – the Indus Valley Civilisation
which dates to 5000 BC and was concentrated along Mohenjodaro and Harappa located in Sindh and Punjab respectively in modern day Pakistan.
The Vedic period saw the rise of Hinduism and with it the caste system which plagued India for a long time. This period also saw the rise of several other empires like the Gupta empire
and the Mauryan empire
which established its military might across India. Medieval India
started with the rise of the Islamic empires including the Delhi Sultanate
and the Mughal Era
. The Mughals have left an indelible mark on Indian history through their art and architecture and several historical monuments like the Taj Mahal and the Red Fort.
The Mughals were one of the first rulers who tried to bring the whole of India under one rule. With the fall of Mughal Empire and the defeat of Bahadur Shah Zafar, the British firmly established their grip over India defeating other colonial powers
The anti-British movement gained momentum form the early 20th century with the establishment of the Nationalist Movement in India led by Mahatma Gandhi.
India wrested its independence from the British in 1947 after years of protests and mass agitation which also saw the partition of India and birth of Pakistan.
Cultural Influence in India
India is a land of cultural diversities and is influenced by various religions
, art and architecture. India has successfully embraced the teachings of the Vedas, preaching of Lord Buddha as illustrated in Thripitaka, and that of Kalpa Sutra of the Jains and Adi Granth of the Sikhs.
However, influence of Mauryan and Guptas is evident from the paintings in Ajanta and Ellora, and Sanchi Stupa.
History of Indian dance and music can be traced to Kalidasa’s play Shakuntala and Meghdoot and hymns sung during Vedic sacrifices. Indian martial arts Kalarippayattu from Kerala is also influenced by ancient fighting style of 12th century BC and is practised even today. Read More
History of Indian Coins
The history of Indian coins can be traced to the Indus Valley Civilization with the first documented coins the ‘Punch marked’ coins issued between 7th-6th century BC and 1st century AD. Initially copper and silver coins were used for trade purposes with various symbols mostly that of animals and plants
to read more on history of Indian Coins
Historical Reforms in India
India has a rich history of social reformers who have played a great role in shaping Indian society and helping it do away with some evils like sati and child marriage that plagued the society for a long time.
Click here for details on Historical Reforms
Major wars have been fought at various times on Indian soil. India has witnessed the rise and fall of various empires and dynasties through some fierce and bloody battles.
The Kalinga War
between Asoka and the state of Kalinga changed Asoka completely and forced him to follow the path of non-violence and took on the onus to spread Buddhism.
The three battles of Panipat
had their own significance. The wars fought in modern times were no less violent with memories of Kargil War
still haunting us.
Indian rulers from time to time received many royal titles
. These titles made them not only more powerful but also a princely status.
Titles like Maharaja, Raja, Nawab, Wali were very common between Indian rulers. Among the Hindu rulers titles like Rana, Rawat, Sar Desai, and Thakur were used to denote prestigious positions.
Historical HeroesIndian history is what it is today because of some of our brave soldiers and heroes who have sacrificed their lives for us over centuries.