Who were the Maurya?

The Brahman literature, Vishnu Puran, Mudra Rakshas, Katha Sarit Sagar, Brihatkatha Manjari indicate that Maurya were Shudra by caste. According to Buddhist traditions, Mauryans were Kshatriyas. Jain traditions refer to the humble origin of Chandra Gupta Maurya. Chanakya destroyed the Shudra Nandas and he could not have thought of enthroning another Shudra. Moriya Kshatriya was his caste as Dr. R. K. Mukerjee believed. The peacock theory is also forwarded by some scholars by affirming that Chandra Gupta belonged to a region where peacocks were found in abundance. The Greek writers bear testimony to the humble origin of Chandra Gupta.   Read Also: Centralized Administration of Mauryan Empire

Sources of History

(1) Arthshastra of Kautilya,
(2) Mudra Rakshas of Vishakhdatt,
(3) Inscriptions,
(4) Brahman litera­ture,
(5) Jain literature,
(6) Buddhist literature,
(7) Archaeological sour­ces,
(8) The Greek writers specially Megasthenese.

Chandra Gupta Maurya

He established a big empire and made India free from the Greek settlements on the northern border. He defeated Dhan Nand the ruler of Nanda dynasty and established his suzerainty over Magadh. He also defeated the Greek ruler Selukose and forced him to sign a treaty according to which —

1. Selukose gave Chandra Gupta the regions of Aria (Herat), Paropanisadi (Kabul), Arakesia (Qandahar), Jodrosia (Baluchis­ tan).

2. Selukose married his daughter Helen to ChandraGupta.

3. Selukose sent Megasthenese to the Court of Chandra Gupta Maurya.

4. ChandraGupta presented to Selukose, 500 Indian elephants.


1. He conquered various States in the Punjab region. 2. He conquered Magadh. 3. He crushed the rebellion of Malyaketu. 4. He defeated Selukose. 5. He conquered western India. 6. He conquered some regions of south India.

Extension of Empire

The empire of Chandragupta extended from Himalaya in the north to Mysore in the south and from Bengal to Hindukush in the north-west and in the west up to the Arabian sea. His capital was Patliputra.

Last Days

According to Buddhist Texts, Chandra Gupta ruled successfully for 24 years. According to Jain Texts, he gave the throne to his son and went to Mysore with Bhadrabahu, the Jain Monk. He accepted Jainism and led the life of a Monk. He died in 298 B.C.   Don’t Miss:Takshila UniversityInvasion of Alexander in India



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  1. 'Maurya', suffix after his name 'Chandragupta Maurya' is derived from the name of his mother 'Moora'. Kautilya gave this suffix to Chandragupta when Kautilya asked Chandragupta's mother to avenge his insult from Dhananand.

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