Chapter Notes and Summary
• Writing Books : During this period, epics were composed and compiled. Epics are grand and long compositions about heroic men, women and God.
• Building Temples : During this period many temples for deities such as Vishnu, Shiva and Durga were built.
• Iron Pillar in Delhi : Iron pillar at Mehrauli in Delhi is best example of skill of Indian crafts persons.
It is 1500 years old. Till today, iron pillar has not rusted.
• Paintings : Ajanta is a famous place for several caves and monasteries with paintings. Paintings were drawn inside caves in light of torches. All paintings are 1500 years old and artists are unknown.
• Silappadikaram : A poet llango composed Silappadikaram, a Tamil epic, around 1800 years ago. Silappadikaram is about story of a merchant and his wife, Kannagi. This epic mentions about incident that happened in Madurai.
• Writings of Kalidasa : During this period, Kalidasa contributed a lot towards Sanskrit literature. Malavikagnimitra, Abhigyan Shakuntalam, Vikramorvasiya, Raghuvansham and Kumarasambhava were some of popular works of Kalidasa.
• Writing Puranas : Purana means ‘old’. Many Puranas such as Mahabharata and Ramayana were written during this period. Puranas contain stories about Gods and goddesses such as Vishnu, Shiva, Durga, Parvati.
Women and Shudras were not allowed to study Vedas during this period.
• Stupa : Stupa means ‘mound’. common features of stupa are round, tall, big and small. At centre of a stupa, there is a small box known as a relic casket, which contains bodily remains such as teeth, bone and ashes.
• Features of Temple Buildings : An important part of temples was room known as Garbhagriha where chief deity was placed. A tower known as Shikhara was built on top of Garbhagriha. Many temples had Mandapa. Temples in Mahabalipuram and Aihole were built during this period.
• Methods of Building Stupas and Temples : Kings and Queens decided to build stupas and temples made of good quality stones, decorated with sculptures and pillars. Kings and Queens spent money to pay crafts persons, apart from donations and gifts.
• Stories by Ordinary People : Ordinary people also told stories, composed poems and songs. Jatakas and Panchatantra were written during this period.
• Features of Iron Pillar : It is made of iron and stands 7.2 m high and weighs over 3 tonnes (3,000 kilograms).
An inscription on pillar about mentions a ruler named Chandra, who belonged to Gupta dynasty.
• Around Stupa : Around stupa, a path known as Pradakshina Patha was laid. Devotees move on a rounded path in a clockwise direction expressing devotion. Gateways of stupa were decorated with sculptures. In Amaravati, there existed a magnificent stupa dated back to 2000 years ago.
• Books on Science : During this period, Aryabhatta, a mathematician and astronomer wrote a book of science, “Aryabhatiyam”. He also developed a scientific explanation for eclipses. Zero was invented in India during this period only.
• Mahabharata : It is a story about a war between Kauravas and Pandavas for controlling Hastinapur. It was written about 1500 years ago.
• Madurai : Madurai is one of cities in Tamil Nadu known for its temples. In this city, Tamil Sangam (Assembly) emerged and contributed for development of Tamil literature and it was first Sangam assembly in sequence of three Sangams.
• Great Stupa : It is located at Sanchi in Madhya Pradesh. It dates back to period of Ashoka and is best architectural evidence for Buddhist history.
• Monolithic Temples : Monolithic Temples are temples that were carved out of a huge single rock. These temples can be seen in Mahabalipuram near Chennai city in Tamil Nadu.
Chapter Notes and Summary