Chapter Three Classical India by zCcBpI7


									  Chapter Three
  Classical India

     Ms. Sheets
University High School
• Most of India         Geography of India
  separated from rest
  of Asia,
• Himalayas linked
  India to the Middle
• 2 important
  regions: along the
  Indus and along
  the Ganges.
       Vedic and Epic Ages
• Aryan (Indo-European) hunter-gatherer
  migrants came from central Asia to India.
• Vedic Age (1500-1000 BCE) = Indian
  agriculture flourish in Indus and Ganges
• Sanskrit: the literary language of Vedic
• Religious texts: Vedas
• Indian Caste System: began as Indian
  social classes
        Indian Caste
•   Brahmans- priests
•   Kshatriya- warriors
•   Vaisya- merchants, traders
•   Sudra- artisans, farmers
•   Harijan- “outside” of the caste system,

• Castes became hereditary, can only marry within
• Aryans developed caste systems because they
  saw themselves as superior and wanted to
  distinguish themselves from non-Aryans.
     Patterns in Classical India
• Regionalism
   – Divided into sixteen regional states.
   – Used many languages
   – Allowed the caste system, which promoted tolerance
     within society by living with rigid social structures

• Political Diversity:
   – Chandragupta Maurya- the first Mauryan ruler, who
     helped to unify much of India
   – Government was usually autocratic (one person with
     absolute power) and the ruler had to rely on personal
     and military power

• Extended Mauryan conquests, gaining
  control of all by the southern tip of India.
• Converted to Buddhism, which helps to
  spread Buddhism, but honored Hinduism
• Improved trade routes
  Kushans and

• Kushans pushed into northwestern India
  – Civilization collapsed in 220 CE
• Guptas established a large empire in 320 CE
  – Political stability
  – Conquered by the Huns in 535 CE
                Religion and

• Hinduism and Buddhism were the religions of
  classical India.
• Hinduism
  – Developed gradually over many centuries
  – Sacred texts: Vedas
  – No founder, no central holy figure
• Buddhism
  – Developed in 563 BCE after Siddhartha Gautama,
    who becomes the Buddha
  – Buddhism didn’t “stick” in India despite Ashoka’s
    conversion, but spread throughout Asia
               Culture in India
• Most epic poems written down during the Gupta
• Science and Math.
  – Science: Aryabhatta calculated the length of a solar
    year, circumference of earth, developed a theory of
  – Medical advancements: bone setting, inoculation
    against smallpox
  – Math: Invented the concept of zero, negative
    numbers, square roots and the number system as we
    know it today (Arabic numerals)
• Guptas supported one of the world’s first
  – Lecture halls, libraries, observatory.
                 Art in India

• Stupas: spherical shrines
• Art was less realistic, and more stylistic
• Art was very colorful, religious
  Economy and Society in India
• Caste system
   – Assigned people to occupations and regulated
   – Lower caste people had fewer rights
• Family life
   – Patriarchal society
   – Rights of women limited
   – System of arranged marriages
• Economy
   –   Excelled in iron-making
   –   Textiles, cotton
   –   Emphasis on trade (cinnamon, elephants, salt, fish)
   –   Agriculturally based
    Chapter 3 Discussion Questions
•   What is the purpose of the Indian caste system?
• Describe the Indian caste system. What is the purpose of the Indian caste
  system? How did the caste system affect the daily lives of people living on
  the Indian subcontinent?
•   What were significant advancements in science and math during Classical
    Indian civilization?
•   How did empires and smaller kingdoms contribute to the advancement of
    cultural and economic life of the Indian subcontinent?
•   How did the invasion of Aryan migrants influence classical Indian civilization?
•   How did the Maurya and Gupta civilizations unite parts of India at crucial
    periods of Indian history?
•   How did the influence of Hinduism and Buddhism influence the arts and
    sciences in classical India?
•   What was the Indian economy based upon?
•   How do China and India offer contrasts in political emphases, social systems,
    and cultures?

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