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India’s Ancient Past$
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R. S. Sharma

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780195687859

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195687859.001.0001

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The Significance of Maurya Rule

The Significance of Maurya Rule

Chapter:
(p.179) 19 The Significance of Maurya Rule
Source:
India’s Ancient Past
Author(s):

R.S. Sharma

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195687859.003.0019

Ashoka proclaimed dharma and appointed officials to infuse and impose its essentials throughout India. An assertion of royal absolutism was a natural culmination of the policy of military conquest adopted by the princes of Magadha. According to the Arthashastra of Kautilya, a striking social development of the Maurya period was the employment of slaves in agricultural operations. Kautilya appoints many taxes which were collected from peasants, artisans, and traders. The Mauryas made a remarkable contribution to art and architecture, and introduced stone masonry on a wide scale. The Maurya period saw a rapid growth of material culture in the Gangetic plains. The Brahmanical reaction, financial crisis, oppressive rule, new knowledge in the outlying areas, and the neglect of the North-West frontier and the Great Wall of China were the several causes that appear to have brought about the decline and fall of the Maurya Empire.

Keywords:   Ashoka, Maurya period, Kautilya, material culture, Brahmanical reaction, finanicial crisis, North-West frontier

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