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Page 1. Page 2. Page 3. Page 4. Page 5. Page 6. Page 7. Page 8. Page 9. Page Page Page Page Page Page Page Page Page soundofheaven.info Chandra (Chairman). Professor R. S. Sharma. Professor JJarun De. Professor Sum1t Sarkar. Professor M. G. S Narayanan. Shn S. H. Khan. soundofheaven.info - Ebook download as PDF File .pdf) or read book online. Medieval History Satish Chandra Part 2. Uploaded by.
Mitra published a tract to show irrefutably that in ancient times beef eating was not a taboo. Saletore, U. They were in fact second class citizens, on the fringes of Aryan society. Positive Smiles. The earliest stage was that of tribal military democracy in which tribal assemblies, which had some place for women were mainly pre-occupied with war. In law, they claimed great privileges. The English accounts on which Marx relied were the product of colonial mistakes and misinterpretation.
Kings referred to their divine status in their titles and panegyrics, and they were regularly addressed by their courtiers as deva, or God. The Chola kings and some others were even worshipped as God in the temples. This is the very ancient story of the first man, Manu, who combined the characteristics of Adam and Noah in the Hebrew tradition.
All adopt the earlier legends to stress the divine status of the king, and his divine appointment to the kingly office. John Spellman also favours the view that the theory of divine origin was the dominant and popularly accepted theory regarding the origin of the state in ancient India. Firstly, in case of a Hindu ruler ruling arbitrarily and tyrannically there was no provision for secular punishment.
The king would be punished only by divine powers. Secondly, the king was supposed to follow the divine laws and not man-made laws. So Spellman concludes that in ancient India, the basic notion of the origin of the state was based on divine creation. According to Charles Drekmeier23 the notion of divinity was used as a metaphor in ancient India.
Only those kings could claim a divine status who fulfilled the aspirations of their subjects. Shamasastry also denies in emphatic terms the notion of royal divinity in the Vedic age and in the age of Kautilya. John Spellman and U.
Ghoshal accept only the Buddhist sources as the authentic source of contract theory because according to them the brahmanical texts have a mixture of contract and divine origin whereas Buddhist sources give a clear cut account of contract theory. Jayasawal and D. We may summarise the main stages in this story, which is stated by the Buddha to refute the brahmins claim for precedence over members of all the other social classes.
It is said that there was a time when people were perfect, and lived in a state of happiness and tranquility. This perfect state lasted for ages, but at last the pristine purity declined and there set in rottenness. Differences of sex manifested themselves, and there appeared distinctions of colour. In a word, heavenly life degenerated into earthly life. Now shelter, food and drink were required. People gradually entered into a series of agreements among themselves and set up the institutions of the family and private property.
But this gave rise to a new set of problems, for there appeared theft and other forms of unsocial conduct. Therefore, people assembled and agreed to choose as chief a person who was the best favoured, the most attractive and the most capable. In return they agreed to contribute to him a portion of their paddy.
The individual, who was thus elected, came to hold in serial order three titles: This idea was adumberated in the middle Ganga plains, where paddy was the basis of the economy of the people. The only definite form of punishment is the banishment of the guilty. Thus, on the whole, the obligation of the head of the state is negative. He steps in only when people break the established laws. The khattiya which means the lord of fields, suggests that the primary duty of the king is to protect the plots of one against being encroached upon by the other.
In contrast to the several obligations of the king, the people are assigned only one duty, namely, to pay a part of their paddy as contribution to the king. The rate of taxation is not prescribed but the contemporary law-book of Baudhayana lays down that the king should protect the people in return for one- sixth of the produce.
It cannot be regarded as a deliberate and thought out exposition, as in the case with the theoretical discussion of the seven elements of the state. This account of the origin of the state closes with the moral that the king should not be disregarded.
The Kautilyan speculation is in keeping with an advanced economy, when different kinds of grain were produced so that the king laid claim not only to an unspecified part of paddy but also to a fixed part of all kinds of grain produce. Similarly, trade had been established as a regular source of income to the state, for both Megasthenes and Kautilya refer to officers regulating trade in this period. Besides, mining was a thriving industry in the Mauryan age.
Probably on account of this, provision is made for payment of a part of hiranya, which covers not only gold but also includes similar other precious metals. Finally, the fact that even the inhabitants of the forest are not exempted from taxes is an indication of the comprehensive character of the Kautilyan state.
Thus taken as a whole the first three taxes, namely, those in grain, commodities and metals, reflect the developed economy of the Mauryan period, and all the four taxes mentioned in the terms of contract made between the mythical Manu and the people betray to some extent the elaborate taxation system and the increasingly acquisitive character of the Mauryan state. On the contrary, the obligation put upon the people are burdensome and are designed to strengthen royal authority. This point is clearly brought out towards the close of the passage which describes the contract theory of the origin of kingship.
It is argued that the king, who assures security and well-being to his subjects by eliminating wrongful acts through coercion and taxes should never be disregarded. All of them claimed that the state is not a natural institution but is created by a contract which suggests that the political authority is the result of mutual consent among individuals.
But the three contractualist philosophers differ in their description of contract and various issues related to it. Contractualist philosophers start their description with the depiction of human nature. Based on this human nature they make a description of the state of nature which is a stage prior to the creation of the state.
Self interest is the mainspring of human actions. Individuals are creatures of desire, seeking pleasure and avoiding pain. Therefore, Hobbes contended that human life was nothing but a perpetual and relentless desire and pursuit of power.
In the state of nature every individual is free to do everything which means no one is free to do anything in actual practice. There was complete absence of order and peace in such a state. Hobbes further formulates that individuals have a general tendency of self- preservation.
But in the state of nature survival or self-preservation is threatened. Therefore, individuals enter into a contract through which they surrender their right to do everything to the Leviathan or the state. They only retain with them the right to self-preservation or right to life. Human beings are by nature peace loving and rational.
Therefore, in the state of nature peace and goodwill prevailed. Right to life, 2. Right to liberty, 3. Right to property. But eventually individuals experienced some inconveniences in the state of nature.
Firstly, there was no clear definition of natural law. Secondly, there was no sufficient authority to enforce them and thirdly, there was no common arbiter having authority to decide disputes in agreement with the law of nature.
Due to these inconveniences individuals entered into a contract to establish the state. By this contract each individual surrendered his or her right of interpreting and enforcing the law of nature.
They did not surrender their other natural rights. By a second act, the majority having the whole power of the community in them, decided to set up a government to carry out the provisions of the first contract.
Sovereignty belonged to the community and government was only a trustee. The community and the people had an inalienable right to dismiss the government if it proved false to the trust reposed in it. Lockean contract is different from Hobbessian contract in many ways.
They only surrender their right to interpret and enforce natural law. Similarly, in Lockean contract this right was given to the community as a whole and not to a particular body like Leviathan as it was in the Hobbessian contract. According to Rousseau human nature is basically good, sympathetic and simple. The state of nature was a state of perfect equality and liberty— a stage of idyllic happiness. But the growth of population and consequent economic development created tension in the state of nature.
The growing economic advancement gave rise to the system of property. The notion of property made individuals think in terms of mine and thine. This marked the dawn of reason. Human nature which was previously simple now became increasingly complex. Hostility and conflict appeared in the state of nature.
The need of self- preservation impelled individuals to form a civil society by contract. A general overview of the three contractualist philosophers suggests that they reached different conclusions on the basis of their social contract theories. Hobbes became a supporter of absolutism. Locke justified constitutional government whereas Rousseau supported popular sovereignty and direct democracy. Locke emphasised on the natural rights of the individuals.
Individuals are born with certain rights which are inalienable from the individual. If the government is unable to protect these rights, individuals have the right to revolt against the government. On the other hand Hobbes accepts only one right of the individual that is the right to self-preservation.
Individuals do not have anything called natural rights. According to Rousseau the General Will is always right. Therefore, the individual must abide by the commands of the General Will.
Altekar, B. Saletore, U. Ghoshal and D. Bhandarkar have made a detailed comparison between the social contract theory developed by Indian thinkers and that of Western scholars.
In the view of Altekar, Saletore and Ghoshal, ancient Indian theory could not make a clear cut distinction between the rights of the ruled and authority of the ruler. But what precisely will constitute a breach of the contract on the part of the government, and what is the secular constitutional machinery by which people can enforce the performance of the terms of the original contract is nowhere clearly described. The permission to remove a tyrant or to kill him no doubt assumes the ultimate sovereignty of the people and invests them with supreme authority; this remedy, however, is drastic, and difficult.
It would have been more useful if our authorities had recommended a less extreme but more practicable remedy in the form of an everyday constitutional check. Bhandarkar concludes that Indian theory is more systematic than the contract theory developed by Hobbes. Firstly, according to Bhandarkar, in the Hobbessian contract, absolute authority is vested in the ruler whereas in India the ruler was considered to be the servant of the people.
Secondly, in the Indian tradition Manu becomes the king after a successful dialogue with the people whereas in Hobbessian theory the ruler is not a party to the contract but he is the product of the contract. In Western tradition contract theory was formulated to reject the theory of divine origin of the state whereas the Indian theory finally merges with the divine theory.
Also, the Indian theorists did not talk about the issue of natural rights and political obligation whereas Western theory addresses these issues. Thus, in ancient Indian thought, on the question of the origin of the state, there are several theories. But among them two are most prevalent — contract theory and the theory of mystical origin, often rather incongruously combined. The earliest stage was that of tribal military democracy in which tribal assemblies, which had some place for women were mainly pre-occupied with war.
The age of Rig Veda was primarily a period of assemblies. The chiefs were helped by the priesthood called the brahmins. This stage saw the beginning of taxes and classes or varnas which came to be firmly established in the third stage. The third stage was marked by the formation of the full-fledged state. There arose large territorial monarchies of Kosala and Magadha and tribal oligarchies in North-Western India and at the foot of the Himalayas.
For the first time we hear of large standing armies and organised machinery for the collection of land revenue. The state with the help of its bureaucracy controlled various aspects of the life of its subjects. The fifth stage was marked by the process of decentralised administration in which towns, feudatories and military elements came to the forefront in both the Deccan and North India.
This was partly neutralised by the emphasis on the divinity of the king. The last stage, identical with the Gupta period, may be called the period of proto-feudal polity. Land grants now played an important part in the formation of the political structure and those made by the Gupta feudatories conferred fiscal and administrative privileges on priestly beneficiaries.
The king performed multi-dimensional functions. He protected the purity of class and caste by ensuring that those who challenged the system were excommunicated. He protected the family system by punishing adultery and ensuring the fair inheritance of family property. He protected widows and orphans by making them his wards. He protected the rich against the poor by suppressing robbery, and he protected the poor against the rich by punishing extortion and oppression. Religion was protected by liberal grants to learned brahmins and temples and frequently to heterodox sects also.
Comparing the king and the ascetic it says: No doubt such a programme was rarely kept in practice, but it at least shows the ideal at which the king was expected to aim. In all sources the king is told that he must be prompt in the administration of justice and always accessible to his people. With the Mauryas this possibility was substantially realised, and was incorporated into the Buddhist tradition and blended with later Vedic imperialist ideas, then taken over by orthodox Hinduism.
The concept of the universal emperor was also known to the Jainas, and in the epics numerous kings of legend, such as Yudhisthira and Rama, are said to have been digvijayins or conquerors of all the four quarters. The universal emperor was a divinely ordained figure with a special place in the cosmic scheme, and as such was exalted to semi-divine status.
The tradition was an inspiration to ambitious monarchs, and in the Middle Ages some even claimed to be universal emperors themselves. According to Altekar the position, powers and privileges of the king have varied from age to age. After B. During this period the king became the effective head of the executive administration and there was no popular assembly like samiti to check him.
Ministers were selected by the king and held office at his pleasure. The king presided over the council of ministers and its decisions had to receive royal assent. When the mercantilist and first-generation industrial powers had acquired colonies in India and other parts of Asia this idea was popularised. Montesquieu postulates immutability of laws, customs, manners and religion in the Eastern countries38 and Hegel speaks of unchanging Hindus, their one unbroken superstition, and of stationary China and India.
Marx gave an ecological and sociological explanation of the theory of Oriental despotism. In Marxian analysis the need for irrigation in arid zones has been put forward as the main cause of Oriental despotism. Irrigation maintenance required a large number of officers so that bureaucracy became an important element in the Asiatic mode of production or of Oriental despotism.
During their criticism of British foreign policy in , Marx and Engels first of all became interested in an analysis of Asiatic society. Marx and Engels pointed out certain features of Asiatic society or Asiatic mode of production which differentiated it from Western society. These features were noted by them as follows: In such a society state became the real landlord having control over the self-sufficient villages.
Due to geographical and climatic reasons these self-sufficient communities were dependent on irrigation. In this way the concept of Oriental despotism and stagnation of Asiatic society were explained on the basis of the dominant role played by the state in public works and the self- sufficiency and isolation of the village community. Perry Anderson in his book Lineages of the Absolutist State has produced an elaborate analysis of the Asiatic mode of production and Oriental despotism.
According to Perry Anderson, two main intellectual traditions influenced the writings of Marx and Engels on Asiatic societies- 1. German classical philosophy of Hegel 2. English political economy of Richard Jones. On the basis of the writings of his predecessors Marx and Engels pointed out certain key traits of Asiatic society like- — absence of private property — existence of self-sufficient village community — oriental despotism.
Perry Anderson points out three stages in the writings of Marx and Engels on Asiatic society. In the first phase of their writing, Marx and Engels talked of absence of private property in Asiatic societies and linked it to the climatic conditions and nature of soil. North African and Asian soil was arid. Due to aridity of soil agriculture was not possible in these areas without artificial irrigation facilities. This need for irrigation and hence hydraulic works increased the role of state.
Thus, in Asiatic society state played a very powerful role and as a result of this, Oriental despotism came into existence. In the second phase of his writing when Marx was drafting the Grundrisse, he predominantly emphasised on the self-sustaining character of the village community and communal ownership of land instead of on its royal control.
The all embracing unity which stands above all these small common bodies may appear as the higher or sole proprietor, the real community only as hereditary possessors. The despot here appears as the father of all the numerous lesser communities, thus realising the common unity of all. It therefore follows that the surplus product belongs to this highest unity.
Oriental despotism therefore appears to lead to a legal absence of property. In the third phase of his writing Marx again reverted to the earlier position. In Capital he reaffirmed the traditional European axiom of a state monopoly of land in Asia, while retaining his conviction of the importance of self enclosed rural communities at the base of Oriental society. Perry Anderson points out many shortcomings in the Marxian analysis of Asiatic society and Oriental despotism. He denies the existence of communal property in Mughal or in post-Mughal India.
The English accounts on which Marx relied were the product of colonial mistakes and misinterpretation.
Likewise, cultivation in common by villagers was a legend: Far from the Indian villages being egalitarian, moreover, they were always sharply divided into castes, and what co-possession of landed property did exist was confined to superior castes who exploited lower castes as tenant cultivators on it. Sharma, on the basis of historical and archaeological evidence tried to refute the Marxian analysis. There is nothing to show that a large bureaucracy developed in the Mauryan times in response to the needs of irrigation.
Kautilya mentions about 30 departmental heads and eighteen high officers, all of whom are needed for looking after various economic and administrative activities, but none is provided with irrigation.
That the governor of Saurastra took steps to repair the embankment of the Sudarshana lake under the Mauryas, Rudradaman and the Guptas shows that irrigation was also a provincial responsibility.
Evidences of family and communal construction of irrigation works is not lacking. There are many references to communal ownership of land in medieval India which Perry Anderson has ignored.
Similarly R. Sharma basically considers climatic conditions and need of irrigation as the central theme in the Marxian writing.
He gives less importance to the self-sufficient village community which is very crucial in the writings of Marx. In the writings of Marx we see a gradual shift of emphasis from the despotic Oriental state to the self-sufficient village community. Basing his argument on Colebrooke's Digest of Hindu Law, which emphasises the sovereign's proprietary right to the land on the strength of conquest, Richard Jones made the point that right from brahminical times the sovereign had the right to the ownership of all the land.
Sharma states that evidence for royal ownership of land in ancient India is weak. Under the all powerful Kautilyan state royal ownership seems to have been enforced only in the waste lands in which new rural settlements were founded and peasants allotted arrable lands for lifetime.
Indian writers by and large criticised the theory of Oriental despotism. If he infringed sacred custom too blatantly he incurred the hostility of the brahmins and often of the lower orders also. More than one great dynasty, such as the Nandas, Mauryas and Sungas, fell as a result of brahminic intrigue.
Thus brahmins and the sacred law were the greatest check on autocracy. All textbooks on statecraft recommend that the king listen to the counsel of his ministers, who are advised to be fearless in debate, and more than one king was overthrown through the intrigue of his councilors. Another very important check was public opinion. Our writers, therefore, have laid particular emphasis on making adequate provision for the proper education and training of princes during their childhood and adolescence.
It was meant to serve as a garb for colonial aggression. A disappointed French patriot and Orientalist called Anquetil-Duperron writes "despotism is the government in these countries, where the sovereign declares himself the proprietor of all the goods of his subjects. Such is the reasoning of avid greed, concealed behind a facade of pretexts which must be demolished. It seems that the body was divided into two parts mantrina and mantriparishad.
Mantriparishad was the large body resembling a modern council of ministers. Indian Art and Culture by Nithin Singhania is a recent entry, but a really good work. The content is also supported with a plethora of questions that will help students to prepare for the examination. Indian Art and Culture by Nitin Singhania.
History and Culture are very related topics, particularly with respect to ancient and medieval India. Asoka and Buddhism are deeply bonded, the same way we cannot study Shah Jahan without commenting on Taj Mahal. So your approach to studying Indian History should never be limited to Political History where we study the names and wars of Kings but should be very broad to cover other aspects of Social and Economic History too.
Alex is the founder of ClearIAS. As one of the pioneers in online civil services exam coaching, his notes, strategies, guidance, and mock exams have been helping thousands of candidates clear various stages of UPSC Civil Services exam, every year. Class Pls help me guys…. Hi sir…. I am a telugu medium student…. Ncert books are available in english only… if I start my preparation in english as a Telugu medium student can i able to understand the higher economy and polity books??
Hello sir i just want to tell this thing your book notse details in English medium is this avaliable in hindi medium if you have then can you get me the following book or notse details in hindi medium. Your email address will not be published. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email. Learn more. Share 5K. Integrate Learning With Test-Taking!