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Das, Bani Prabha (1965) The political history of Bengal to the rise of the Pala Dynasty, c. 326 B.C. to A.D. 750. PhD thesis. SOAS University of London.

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Abstract

We have divided our work into eight chapters with an introduction, a conclusion, and four appendices. The introduction contains a brief account of the physical features of Bengal and the ancient regions and important cities. In the first chapter it is shown that the people of some parts of Bengal were highly civilised before the Aryans entered the country. This chapter also deals with the gradual process of Aryanisation in Bengal. The second chapter deals with the Gangaridai and Prasii of classical sources. In this chapter we have critically discussed the Mahasthan inscription of the Mauryan period. In the third chapter we have tried to reconstruct the history of Bengal from the fall of the Mauryas to the rise of the Guptas. Because of lack of original sources we are unable to throw much light on this period. The fourth chapter is devoted to the history of Bengal under the Guptas. In this chapter we have discussed the identification of Candra of the Meherauli Pillar Inscription and have identified him with Candra Gupta II, This chapter deals with the reigns of the Gupta Emperors down to Visnu Gupta, with special reference to Bengal during the period. The fifth chapter discusses the political life of Bengal after the break-up of the Gupta empire and the rise of Dharmaditya, Gopacandra and Samacaradeva in south-east Bengal. We refute in this chapter the theory that these kings began to rule immediately after the reign of Vainya Gupta (A.D. 507), as some scholars believe. We have suggested that they rose to power only after the downfall of the imperial Guptas in or after A.D. 543-44. The sixth chapter deals with the rise of Gauda under Sasanka; this chapter discusses his relations with Malwa and Sthanvisvara. The seventh chapter shows the political life of Bengal after the death of Sasanka, whose death was followed by a period of chaos and confusion. It shows that Harsavardhana gained control of much of Bengal after Sasanka's death, and that after the death of Harsa there was a series of foreign invasions, hut eastern Bengal at least remained independent for some time under the Khadga dynasty. This period of anarchy and confusion came to an end after the election of Gopala. The eighth and last chapter deals with the administrative system of Bengal from the Mauryas to sasanka. In the conclusion we have given a rapid survey of our work and have attempted to show a general picture of the period. The work contains four appendices. In Appendix A. we have tried to interpret the administrative terms referred to in Bengal copper-plates. Appendix B. is a study of the coins of the period which have been found in Bengal, Appendix C. deals with the original homeland of the Imperial Guptas and we have refuted the suggestion that this was in Bengal, Appendix D. is a list of inscriptions of the period. We conclude with a bibliography, which includes those hooks, inscriptions and articles which we have consulted in writing this thesis.

Item Type: Theses (PhD)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses > Proquest
Date Deposited: 16 Oct 2018 14:58
URI: http://eprints.soas.ac.uk/id/eprint/28540

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