InVakat

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Phase I Variables (polity-based)

General variables

♠ RA ♣ Edward A L Turner ♥

♠ Original name ♣ Vakataka Kingdom ♥ Vakataka Kingdom.[1]


♠ Alternative names ♣ Vakataka Dynasty ♥

♠ Peak Date ♣ 510 CE ♥

"The Vakataka empire, which was thus at the zenith of its glory at about 510 A.D., disappeared within less than forty years. By c. 500 A.D. the Chalukyas occupied the greater part of it."[2]


Temporal bounds

♠ Duration ♣ 255-550 CE ♥

Start 255 CE

"Vindhyasakti, the founder of the Vakataka kingdom, ruled for about 20 years from c. 255 to 275 A.D. He was a contemporary of Rudra-sena II and seems to have annexed a part of eastern Malwa."[3]
The Vakataka-Gupta age "spread Indian religion and culture in eastern Asia. Hindu colonising activity was, no doubt, started long before our period, but it is after the beginning of the 3rd century A.D. that we are able to trace its definite course and achievements."[4]

End: c550 CE

"The Vakataka empire, which was thus at the zenith of its glory at about 510 A.D., disappeared within less than forty years. By c. 500 A.D. the Chalukyas occupied the greater part of it."[5]
"Around the middle of sixth century CE the territory of the Padmapura - Nandivardhana - Pravarapura branch came under the control of early Kalacuri king Krishnaraja who governed it through his vassals (Mirashi 1957: 62-65)."[6]


♠ Degree of centralization ♣ unitary state ♥

Central authority

"the Vakataka period is represented by, 1. change in settlement pattern, 2. permanent land grants, 3. centrally ruling authority, 4. absence of long distance trade, and 5. revival of Brahmanism"[7]
Under Harishena, "no contemporary kingdom was so extensive and powerful. Hari-shena must have been an able ruler, a skilful administrator, and a renowned general to render this achievement possible."[8]


♠ Supra-polity relations ♣ alliance ♥

Alliance

"The Vakatakas and Guptas were closely related, with the Vakatakas being arguably the most important partner kingdom of the Gupta dynasty."[9]
"Vakataka dynasty which flourished at the same time as its mightier neighbour, the Empire of the Guptas - first precariously in their shadow, but later in an alliance with them which was sealed by the marriage of the Vakataka king Rudrasena II to a daughter of Chandra Gupta II Vikramaditya (cc 380-415)."[10]
"It is stated by H. Kulke (quoted in Kapur 2006: 35) that ‘the matrimonial alliance with Guptas raised the status of eastern Vakatakas and initiated three important innovations: land donations to Brahmanas (individual or community); foundation of state sanctuary (Ramgiri); and copper-plate donations to legitimate and strengthen their rule.'"[11]


Supra-cultural relations

♠ preceding (quasi)polity ♣ Satavahana Empire ♥ "The Vakatakas succeeded the Satavahanas and rose to regal power sometime around the middle of the 3rd century CE" [12]
♠ relationship to preceding (quasi)polity ♣ ♥
♠ succeeding (quasi)polity ♣ ♥
♠ Supracultural entity ♣ ♥
♠ scale of supra-cultural interaction ♣ ♥ km squared.

♠ Capital ♣ Padmapura ♥

Eastern Vakatakas of Vidarbha.[13] Vidarbha is a region

Padmapura? "Vakataka queen (nee Gupta) followed in her father's footsteps by favouring religious organisations and building temples. She may have been the major source of inspiration of her husband and have brought the Satvata ritual experts from Vatsagulma to Padmapura in order to serve in her new temple."

"the official records of Padmapura - Nandivardhana - Pravarapura branch"[14]

♠ Language ♣ Sanskrit ♥ Sanskrit. Gupta-Vakataka period: "The literary products of the age were numerous and varied, and some of the great masterpieces of Sanskrit literature like the Sakuntala, the Raghuvamsa and the Mrichohhakatika were composed in our period."[15]

General Description

The Vakataka dynasty ruled over the central Indian region of Vidarbha and surrounding areas between the 3rd and 6th centuries CE. This polity was founded by King Vindhyasakti in around 255 CE, reached its zenith around 510, and had been replaced by the Chalukya polity by the mid-6th century.[16] The Vakataka period was characterized by the establishment of a centrally ruling authority, agrarian expansion, and the revival of Hinduism, aided by an increase in royal land grants assigned for religious purposes and the construction of new temples.[17]

Population and political organization

The Vakataka polity was ruled by a king.[18] Inscriptions suggest that he was aided at court by ministers and administrative personnel, including revenue officers, and in the provinces by a hierarchy of provincial and local authorities.[19]
No population estimates for this period could be found in the specialist literature.

Social Complexity variables

♠ RA ♣ Edward A L Turner ♥

Social Scale

♠ Polity territory ♣ [900,000-1,000,000] ♥


♠ Polity Population ♣ [6,000,000-7,000,000] ♥ People. "In India the climate was quite congenial from 5th century BCE to 4th century CE, when Europe enjoyed a warmer phase. There was again as intensely cold phase in Europe from the 4th century - 10th century CE therefore it is inferred that India had an arid phase at that time (for details see Dhavalikar 2002)."[20] "The visible impact is - change in the pattern of settlements; change from urban (monetary) to more village-based economy; increase in land grants (minimizing cash transaction); probably the hardships and adverse conditions in life gave rise to propensity towards godly faith visibly resulted in large number of religious structures."[21]


♠ Population of the largest settlement ♣ ♥ Inhabitants.


Hierarchical Complexity

♠ Settlement hierarchy ♣ 5 ♥ levels.

"The Vakataka period is particularly important as far as Vidarbha (eastern part of Maharashtra) history is concerned, as it witnessed a drastic change in settlement pattern" [22]

1. Capital

2. Capital town (pura, nagara?)
3. Town (gramma? gulma?)
4 Village (agra)
5. Khetaka, Vataka, Palli?

"As against six capital towns or nagaras, 103 villages are mentioned in 34 inscriptions of the Vakatakas. The suffxes added to the names seem to grade the settlements in some kind of hierarchical position depending upon the density of population. Their relative density of population indicated by their names with the suffixes like khetaka, palli, vataka, etc. (see for details Misra 1987)."[23] List of suffixes to villages in Vakataka inscriptions[24]

Khetaka - surrounded by rivers or hills? smallness?[25]
Vataka - settlement surrounded by an enclosure[26]
Palli - same as ghosha in Amarakosha, ghosgha means pastoral or cowherd settlement[27] the word Palli is of Telugu origin, and means "a small village".[28]
Gramma
"Grama could vary in size as regards their population; they could consist of one or more kuti (s) according to the Vinayapitaka, or on the other hand, could have 100 to 500 families, according to Kautilya. Villages were also know as adra."[29]
Pura
capital town "The words pura and nagara seem to be synonymous."[30]
Nagara
Gulma
"The suffix gulma in the name Vatsagulma is also interesting. Manu regards gulma as a station where an army unit was posted for protection of the kingdom (Misra 1987: 645-647)."[31]
Vardhana


♠ Administrative levels ♣ 5 ♥ levels.

1. King[32]

"The concept of territorial lordship appears in some earlier text like Jaya Samhita, but it is only around second century CE or a little later that it is linked to the king’s claims for taxes (Sharma 1991: 191). Thus a king was entitled to levy taxes because he protect people and was the lord of the earth i.e. Bhupati. The Vakatakas had possession over land and also had control over raw material and hidden treasures. This probably reflected contemporary ideology that the king was regarded as a lord of a land, i.e. Bhupati. Thus, the inference of gradual transformation in king’s role from Gopati to Bhupati in Vidarbha can be drawn on the basis of archaeological as well as literary data."[33]


_Royal Court[34]_


2. sachiv (minister)
"inscriptions revealed various names of administrative personals" (see Mirashi 1957, 1963)[35]
2-3. kulaputras, rajuka (revenue officer)[36]
4. Scribes inferred
2-3. rahasika (private secretary)[37]
 ?. dandanayak (???)[38]


"The powerful alliance with the Guptas must have left some influence on Vakataka politics, administration, religion, art and architecture (see Sharma 1991: 339, Jamkhedkar 1983: 25-36)."[39]


_Provincial government_

2. Touring official
"Normally the villagers were expected to provide all amenities to touring offcial in the form of grass for horses, hides for seat and charcoal for cooking, etc. Nevertheless, villages which were donated in grants were exempted from these tax collections."[40]
2. Feudatories
2. rajyadhikruta (Governor).[41] Province (Rajya)[42]
3. District (Ahara, Bhoga)[43]
4. Division (Marga, Patta)[44]
5. Village officials
is this the level for the sarvadhyaksha (civic superintendent)?[45]
"The inscriptions revealed that the village officials were authorized to collect the taxes in the kinds."[46]
5. Brahmans given villages in grant
"During the Satavahana time kings had only granted revenue of particular village to religious benefciaries. However, surprisingly, the Vakatakas had granted villages to religious benefciaries along with exemption of all sort of taxes, nullifying all royal authority over that granted village."[47]


"Vakataka inscriptions also provide information about administrative divisions, as it appeared in Satavahana inscriptions. Some administrative divisions of Satavahanas and Vakatakas are same, viz. Rashtraka, Ahara, and Patha." [48]
"the general imperial administrative structure of Kautilya was adaptable for smaller empires after the seventh century, of the Vakatakas, Pratiharas, and Paias and they were also borrowed by the Mughal Empire later. But they could not be sustained in their fullness in a gemeinshaft society, without the total commitment of the intellectual elite. They underwent serious erosion in several ways. The later empires, including even Harsha's empire were loose - and ultimately local power centers of a feudal tributary nature grew up. ... postseventh-century Hindu administration in North or South Indian empires was essentially a comibination of fuedalism, bureaucracy, and village self-government. This combination had the advantage of avoiding anarchy when central power weakened."[49]
Decentralization trend through this period (still relatively centralized 300 CE) created Indian state of 400-1200 CE: "The essence of the state structure, beginings of which are located with varying emphasis in both pre-Gupta and Gupta periods, may be understood by referring to two interrelated points which feature repeatedly in writings on the period under review: (i) decentralized administration and (ii) political hierarchy. Both points are posited as making a sharp contrast to the state structure of the Mauryas (Close of the fourth century BC to the beginning of the second century BC), the perceived contrast being expressed in such positive statements as: '... the Kusana political organization did not possess that rigid centralization which characterized the Mauryan administrative machinery.' Corrosion of centralization acquired a faster pace in the Gupta period. According to one opinion which envisages severage stages in the evolution of early Indian polity, 'the fifth stage was marked by the process of decentralized administration in which towns, feudatories and military elements came to the forefront in both the Deccan and the north. This was partly neutralized by the emphasis on the divinity of the king. The Kusana princes assumed the official title of devaputra and instituted the cult of the worship of the dead king, and the Satavahana princes came to be compared to deified epic heroes. The last age, identical with the Gupta period, may be called the period of proto-feudal polity.' The processes which worked towards administrative decentralization are essentially seen to have derived from: (i) the practice of making land grants along with administrative privileges, and (ii) the breakdown of the state's monopoly over the army. It is thus stressed that the beneficiaries who received grants of land from kings and their feudatories were given a wide range of fiscal and administrative immunities and the immunities were such that: 'In grants, from the time of Pravarasena II Vakataka onwards (fifth century AD) the ruler gave up his control over almost all sources of revenue, including pasturage, hides and charcoal, mines for the production of salt, forced labour, and all hidden treasures and deposits.' The administrative concomitant of these fiscal immunities was that the 'donor abandoned the right to govern the inhabitants of the village that were granted'. The image of a decentralized administrative apparatus, or, more appropriately, of the virtual absence of any administrative apparatus, comes through most vividly in the following statement: 'The function of the collection of taxs, levy of forced labour, regulation of mines, agriculture, etc., together with those of the maintenance of law and order, and defence, which were hitherto performed by the state officials, were now step by step abandoned, first to the priestly class, and later to the warrior class.' That the decay of state power was comprehensive is also suggested, it is believed, by the breakup of the army into 'small police garrisons' as also through the process of the emergence of virtually autonomous military officials. At the level of commerce, the departure from the Mauryan pattern of rigidly state-controlled commerce and industry is seen in the emergence of autonomous nigamas and srenis, both connoting corporate bodies which regulated their own affairs without interference from the state. The autonomy of the corporations is again believed to have crystallized by the late Gupta period. An example, often cited, is provided by a set of charters from western India dated to the close of the sixth century. The charters were addressed to a group of traders and granted them various immunities; they exempted them from various dues, 'left them free to deal with labourers, herdsmen, etc. and authorised them to impose forced labour on certain artisans. The traders were allowed immunity from the entry of royal officials in their area and from payment of dues and rations for supporting these officials. ... Administrative decentralization, manifest in different ways, was linked primarily with the emergence of political hierarchy, which again contrasts sharply with Mauryan bureaucratic centralization and the absence of intermediary layers in the Mauryan political system."[50]


♠ Religious levels ♣ [1-3] ♥ levels.


Hindu religion. "Followers of both Siva and Visnu, referred to as Mahesvaras and Bhagavatas respectively, were prevalent among the upper classes and each probably occurred with equal frequence, among the elite + the kings. (Impressive sculptures of Brahma have also been found, but nothing is said about his cult.) ... Village worshippers favoured the Devi (goddess)"[51]

"Some kings ... adopted the title 'Dharmamaharaja' which suggests, in the absence of any clear indications of their religious allegiance, at the very least their ecumenical attitude to all faiths (and it might allow speculation about their Buddhist leanings since there is evidence that they were great patrons of the Buddhist Sangha)."[52]

Royal court patronised religious institutions and foundations. This could be through financing building projects or gifts of money or land. The Gupta's "patronage extended to religions other than their personal persuasions, thus spreading an atmosphere of religious tolerance throughout the realm."[53]

Rudrasena II of the Vakatakas, possibly inspired by the Guptas (he was married to a Gupta princess), "initiated a tradition of large-scale religious patronage within the Vakataka kingdom."[54]

Gupta-Vakataka age: "The followers of the different religions, however, lived in harmony and there was complete toleration. Hindu kings endowed Buddhist monasteries. Buddhist kings performed Hindu rituals. In the same family some members followed the Buddhist, and some the Vedic religion."[55]

"The hill of Ramtek in Maharashtra was a major religious centre of the Vakataka dynasty during the Gupta-Vakataka period, which is considered a time of momentous change in Indian history with significant cultural, political and religious developments."[56]


♠ Military levels ♣ [4-6] ♥ levels.

1. King

2. senapati (commander-in-chief)[57]
3. General?
4. Officer/s?
Leader of a army unit. "The suffix gulma in the name Vatsagulma is also interesting. Manu regards gulma as a station where an army unit was posted for protection of the kingdom (Misra 1987: 645-647)."[58]
5.
6. Individual soldier


According to the Mahabharata: 'A file is made up of five footmen, three horses, one chariot, and one elephant ... Three files form one troop-head; three troop-heads, one cluster; three clusters, one troop; three troops make one convoy. Three convoys ... make a column, three columns, a brigade; and three brigades, a division. And ten such divisions constitute ... one army.'"[59] 1. King inferred

2. Division
3. Brigade
4. Column
5. Convoy
6. Troop
7. Cluster
8. Troop-head
9. File
10. Soldier

According to Kautilya's Arthasastra (after 200 BCE): "a squad of ten soldiers, a platoon of ten squads, and a regiment of ten platoons. 'For every ten members of each of the constituents of the army, there should be one commander called padika ... ten padikas should be placed under a senapati, and ten senaptis under a nayaka.'[60] 1. King inferred

2. Nayaka of a regiment
3. Senapati of a platoon
4. Padika of a squad


Professions

♠ Professional military officers ♣ present ♥ senapati (commander-in-chief)[61]

♠ Professional soldiers ♣ inferred present ♥ "The suffix gulma in the name Vatsagulma is also interesting. Manu regards gulma as a station where an army unit was posted for protection of the kingdom (Misra 1987: 645-647)."[62]

♠ Professional priesthood ♣ present ♥ Brahmanas in Hindu temples.[63] "The Vakataka period is particularly important as far as Vidarbha (eastern part of Maharashtra) history is concerned, as it witnessed ... increase in the land grants for religious purpose, revival of brahmanization in the form of construction of temples and evolution of Brahmanical iconography." [64]


Bureaucracy characteristics

♠ Full-time bureaucrats ♣ present ♥ "The Poona plates offer a clear proof of the fact that even the members of lower bureaucracy and scribes and engravers etc. of north Indian origin found ample job opportunities in the Vakataka, court. "[65]

♠ Examination system ♣ ♥

♠ Merit promotion ♣ ♥

♠ Specialized government buildings ♣ present ♥ Mints for the (limited amount of) coinage.

Law

♠ Formal legal code ♣ inferred present ♥ "The evidence of the contemporary Smritis like Narada and Brihaspati shows that the judicial procedure was very well developed in the Gupta period. We may well presume that the sound rules which have been laid down in these Smritis about restraint, res judicata, the relative importance of the oral and the documentary evience, etc., were evolved in the Gupta, Vakataka and Pallava law-courts."[66]


♠ Judges ♣ present ♥ "Hindu tradition required the king to administer justice himself when he was present at the capital. If ill-health or pressure of other work prevented him from discharging this duty, the Chief Justice presided over the court at the capital, and decided cases with the help of jurors. The Supreme Court tried important local cases and also entertained appeals against the decisions of the lower courts in the moffusil. The evidence of the contemporary Smritis like Narada and Brihaspati shows that the judicial procedure was very well developed in the Gupta period."[67]

♠ Courts ♣ present ♥ "Hindu tradition required the king to administer justice himself when he was present at the capital. If ill-health or pressure of other work prevented him from discharging this duty, the Chief Justice presided over the court at the capital, and decided cases with the help of jurors. The Supreme Court tried important local cases and also entertained appeals against the decisions of the lower courts in the moffusil. The evidence of the contemporary Smritis like Narada and Brihaspati shows that the judicial procedure was very well developed in the Gupta period."[68]

"In addition to the official courts at the headquarters of districts and provinces, there existed a number of popular courts in our period. Guilds of traders and caravans had their own courts ..." [69]

♠ Professional Lawyers ♣ absent ♥ "The class of professional pleasders had not yet come into existence; the jurors were expected to analyse the case, ascertain the points favourable for either party and weigh them impartially for coming to a proper decision. Brahmana Durdhara, who proceeds to plead the cause of the defendant against his creditors in the famous case from Pataliputra described by Asahaya in his commentary on Narada-Smriti, IV, 5, no doubt plays the role of the pleader; but he is rebuked by the judge for advocating the cause of a third party in return for a fee. So even in the 8th century the pleader class had not acquired a respectable status."[70]

Specialized Buildings: polity owned

♠ irrigation systems ♣ ♥ "The Vakataka period is particularly important as far as Vidarbha (eastern part of Maharashtra) history is concerned, as it witnessed ... agrarian expansion ..." [71]
♠ drinking water supply systems ♣ ♥
♠ markets ♣ inferred absent ♥ "absence of trade centres, restricted use of coinage (numismatic findings are limited), and absence of objects showing long distance trade."[72]
♠ food storage sites ♣ ♥

Transport infrastructure

♠ Roads ♣ ♥
♠ Bridges ♣ ♥
♠ Canals ♣ ♥
♠ Ports ♣ ♥

Special purpose sites

♠ Mines or quarries ♣ present ♥ "Forests and mines of salt and metals were the state property" and their administration also was most probably in the charge of the revenue department.[73]

Information

Writing System

♠ Mnemonic devices ♣ ♥
♠ Nonwritten records ♣ ♥
♠ Written records ♣ present ♥ Vakataka rulers issued "copper plate grants"[74] "Deotek is a small village in Chandrapur district, about 50 miles southeast of Nagpur. It contains an old temple and a large inscribed slab (now in Central Museum, Nagpur) bearing two epigraphs. Out of the two inscriptions, one dates back to the time of Asoka and the other to that of the Vakatakas."[75]
♠ Script ♣ present ♥ "Deotek is a small village in Chandrapur district, about 50 miles southeast of Nagpur. It contains an old temple and a large inscribed slab (now in Central Museum, Nagpur) bearing two epigraphs. Out of the two inscriptions, one dates back to the time of Asoka and the other to that of the Vakatakas."[76]
♠ Non-phonetic writing ♣ absent ♥
♠ Phonetic alphabetic writing ♣ present ♥

Kinds of Written Documents

♠ Lists, tables, and classifications ♣ ♥
♠ Calendar ♣ present ♥ Kautilya's Arthasastra contains a chapter title "Measurement of Space and Time."[77] The Arthaśāstra "probably arose in the first half of the first millennium AD" but probably largely "derive[s] from older handbooks".[78]
♠ Sacred Texts ♣ present ♥ Buddhist, Hindu and Jain texts.
♠ Religious literature ♣ present ♥ Gupta-Vakataka period: "Philosophy was mostly critical in our period, but it was remarkably creative as well in the case of the Mahayana school of Buddhism. The most original, the most daring and the most far-reaching contributions of this school to the progress of Indian philosophy were made by its thinkers who flourished in our period."[79]
♠ Practical literature ♣ inferred present ♥ Vakataka rulers issued "copper plate grants"[80]
♠ History ♣ ♥
♠ Philosophy ♣ present ♥ Gupta-Vakataka period: "Philosophy was mostly critical in our period, but it was remarkably creative as well in the case of the Mahayana school of Buddhism. The most original, the most daring and the most far-reaching contributions of this school to the progress of Indian philosophy were made by its thinkers who flourished in our period."[81]
♠ Scientific literature ♣ present ♥ Gupta-Vakataka period: "The epoch-making discovery of the decimal system of notation with the place value of zero, which was to simplify the arithmetical processes all over the world, was made by the Hindus during our age. They had a lead over their contemporaries in the fields of algebra and arithmetic. Their progress in astronomy was also remarkable. The discovery that the earth rotates round its axis was made by Aryabhata in the 5th century. The length of his solar year is nearer its true duration than that postulated by Ptolemy."[82] Gupta-Vakataka period: "The six systems of Hindu philosophy assumed their classical form in our age."[83]
♠ Fiction ♣ present ♥ Gupta-Vakataka period: "The literary products of the age were numerous and varied, and some of the great masterpieces of Sanskrit literature like the Sakuntala, the Raghuvamsa and the Mrichohhakatika were composed in our period."[84]

Money

♠ Articles ♣ present ♥ "The inscriptions revealed that the village officials were authorized to collect the taxes in the kinds. Some important objects of the revenue were cattle, flowers, milk, grass, hides as seat, charcoal, fermenting liquor, digging of salt, all kinds of forced labor, hidden treasure and deposits, along with other major and minor taxes called asklipta and upklipta."[85] Taxes paid in cash and partly in kind.[86]
♠ Tokens ♣ ♥
♠ Precious metals ♣ ♥
♠ Foreign coins ♣ ♥
♠ Indigenous coins ♣ present ♥ "The Vakataka period was considered to be a dark phase in Indian numismatics. But recently, Ajay Mitra Shastri has made a startling discovery of a copper coin of the Vakataka king Prithvisena (II ?)"[87] "It was assumed by some scholars that the Vakatakas themselves did not issue any coins, but allowed coins of other rulers to circulate in their territory. However, this assumption has been proved wrong in the light of new discoveries about Vakataka coinage"[88]
♠ Paper currency ♣ suspected unknown ♥

Postal System

♠ Couriers ♣ suspected unknown ♥ Couriers for the state.
♠ Postal stations ♣ ♥
♠ General postal service ♣ ♥

Warfare variables

♠ RA ♣ Edward A L Turner ♥

Military Technologies

Military use of Metals

♠ Copper ♣ present ♥ A military historian suggests that metal armour was not widely used before the Macedonian invasion of Alexander the Great in the late fourth century BCE [89]
♠ Bronze ♣ present ♥ A military historian suggests that metal armour was not widely used before the Macedonian invasion of Alexander the Great in the late fourth century BCE [90]
♠ Iron ♣ present ♥ Iron arrow heads.[91]
♠ Steel ♣ present ♥ Indian iron smiths invented the 'wootz' method of steel creation between 550-450 BCE. The Greek physician Ctesias of Cnidus commented on an Indian steel sword in the possession of Artaxerxes II of Persia (c400 BCE). [92]

Projectiles

♠ Javelins ♣ present ♥ Weapons included the javelin.[93]
♠ Atlatl ♣ absent ♥ Weapon found only in the New World.
♠ Slings ♣ inferred present ♥ Slings were used by the preceding Satavahanas.[94].
♠ Self bow ♣ present ♥ In the hot Monsoon climate of India the composite bow decomposed rapidly so Ancient Indians made bows out of Wootz steel. These were "considerably more rigid than their composite bretheren, meaning they were also less powerful. But they were reliable and predictable, and could be stored away in munitions vaults without worry of decomposition."[95] "The Hindus used bows made of cane or bamboos which were inferior in range, accuracy and penetrative power when compared to the composite bows."[96] Composite bow came to India with the Kushanas but "after the collapse of the Gupta Empire, the use of composite bows died out in India."[97] Iron arrow heads.[98] Weapons included bows and arrows.[99]
♠ Composite bow ♣ suspected unknown ♥ "The Hindus used bows made of cane or bamboos which were inferior in range, accuracy and penetrative power when compared to the composite bows."[100] Composite bow came to India with the Kushanas but "after the collapse of the Gupta Empire, the use of composite bows died out in India."[101] 'From the Kushans, the Indians learnt the use of composite bows. The Sanchi sculptures which can be dated to the first century BC show many soldiers carrying strung and unstrung composite bows. Murray B. Emeneau writes that the Guptas used Sassanian types of composite bows.'[102]
♠ Crossbow ♣ present ♥ Known to Chinese in the first millennium BCE but Vedic literature does not describe anything like a crossbow although Pant suggests "the weapon mentioned as the nalika in ancient Sanskrit literature was a crossbow."[103] "The hand crossbow was usd on Indian battlefields probably from the third century A.D. It was mainly used as an infantry weapon and occasionally as a cavalry weapon. A Sanskrit inscription at Avanthipuram, in South India, reads: '... Of him who has the name of Ananta impelled with speed and skillfully discharged from the machines of his bow fitted with the well stretched string....' Obviously, the machine referred to was a hand crossbow."[104]
♠ Tension siege engines ♣ present ♥ According to Jaina texts, Ajatashatru, a 5th century BCE king of Magadha in North India, used a catapult "capable of hurling huge pieces of stone".[105] Ancient Indian armies had siege engines that could "fling stones and lead balls wrapped up in burning materials. The Mahabharata mentions an Asma-yantra (a stone-throwing machine) in the battle with Jarasandha and we have further records that such engines were used in later periods to set enemy fortifications alight and that 'liquid fires' containing naphtha were in use in ancient India."[106]
♠ Sling siege engines ♣ absent ♥ Byzantines, or perhaps the Chinese, were the first.
♠ Gunpowder siege artillery ♣ absent ♥
♠ Handheld firearms ♣ absent ♥

Handheld weapons

♠ War clubs ♣ present ♥ "There was no significant change in the weaponry of the Indian army from ancient to classical times; in fact, according to Kosambi, there was a decline in the standard of arms. Indian soldiers were mostly very poorly equipped, noted Marco Polo."[107]
♠ Battle axes ♣ present ♥ Weapons included the battle-axe.[108] "There was no significant change in the weaponry of the Indian army from ancient to classical times; in fact, according to Kosambi, there was a decline in the standard of arms. Indian soldiers were mostly very poorly equipped, noted Marco Polo."[109]
♠ Daggers ♣ suspected unknown ♥ "There was no significant change in the weaponry of the Indian army from ancient to classical times; in fact, according to Kosambi, there was a decline in the standard of arms. Indian soldiers were mostly very poorly equipped, noted Marco Polo."[110]
♠ Swords ♣ present ♥ Weapons included the sword.[111] "There was no significant change in the weaponry of the Indian army from ancient to classical times; in fact, according to Kosambi, there was a decline in the standard of arms. Indian soldiers were mostly very poorly equipped, noted Marco Polo."[112]
♠ Spears ♣ present ♥ Weapons included the spear.[113] "There was no significant change in the weaponry of the Indian army from ancient to classical times; in fact, according to Kosambi, there was a decline in the standard of arms. Indian soldiers were mostly very poorly equipped, noted Marco Polo."[114]
♠ Polearms ♣ suspected unknown ♥

Animals used in warfare

♠ Dogs ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Donkeys ♣ suspected unknown ♥ In ancient India the buffalo, bullock, yak, goat, camel, elephant, horse, ass and the mule were all used for transport[115][116] in different regions according to local conditions.[117]
♠ Horses ♣ present ♥ "The fighting force was divided into infantry, cavalry and the elephant corps." [118]
♠ Camels ♣ inferred present ♥ In ancient India the buffalo, bullock, yak, goat, camel, elephant, horse, ass and the mule were all used for transport[119][120] in different regions according to local conditions.[121]
♠ Elephants ♣ present ♥ "The fighting force was divided into infantry, cavalry and the elephant corps." [122]

Armor

♠ Wood, bark, etc ♣ inferred present ♥ A military historian states that the Maurayans carried shields made of raw oxhide stretched over a wood or wicker frame [123] - do Maurayan specialists agree? The Vakatakas were likely no less advanced in terms of their military technology.
♠ Leather, cloth ♣ present ♥ A military historian states helmets were not widely used until the CE period; soldiers used thick turbans to protect their heads[124] - do ancient Indian specialists agree? Kautilya's Arthasastra, written after 200 BCE, mentions "dense structures made of the skin, hooves, and horns/tusks of the river dolphin, rhinocerous, Dhenuka, and cattle" used as armor and a leather shield.[125]
♠ Shields ♣ inferred present ♥ A military historian states that the Maurayans carried shields made of raw oxhide stretched over a wood or wicker frame [126] - do Maurayan specialists agree? Vakataka "soldiers were provided with armours and helmets."[127] Kautilya's Arthasastra, written after 200 BCE, mentions a leather shield.[128]
♠ Helmets ♣ present ♥ Vakataka "soldiers were provided with armours and helmets."[129] Kautilya's Arthasastra, written after 200 BCE, mentions a helmet.[130]
♠ Breastplates ♣ present ♥ Ancient Indians used iron for armour cuirasses and breastplates but copper was also used.[131] Vakataka "soldiers were provided with armours and helmets."[132] Kautilya's Arthasastra, written after 200 BCE, mentions a breast plate.[133]
♠ Limb protection ♣ inferred present ♥ Vakataka "soldiers were provided with armours and helmets."[134] Kautilya's Arthasastra, written after 200 BCE, mentions a thigh guard.[135]
♠ Chainmail ♣ inferred present ♥ Vakataka "soldiers were provided with armours and helmets."[136] Gupta period soldiers who could afford to do so and were willing to bear the heat (or for night operations?) wore chain mail.[137] Kautilya's Arthasastra, written after 200 BCE, mentions a coat of mail.[138]
♠ Scaled armor ♣ suspected unknown ♥ Vakataka "soldiers were provided with armours and helmets."[139]
♠ Laminar armor ♣ suspected unknown ♥ Vakataka "soldiers were provided with armours and helmets."[140]
♠ Plate armor ♣ present ♥ Ancient Indians used iron for armour cuirasses and breastplates but copper was also used.[141] Vakataka "soldiers were provided with armours and helmets."[142] Kautilya's Arthasastra, written after 200 BCE, mentions a metal coat of mail, metal fabric, metal plate, cuirass, corselet, and breast plate.[143]

Naval technology

♠ Small vessels (canoes, etc) ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Merchant ships pressed into service ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Specialized military vessels ♣ absent ♥ 'Chalukyas, Pallavas and the Cholas are noted for their naval forces."[144] It can be inferred that no other state had a significant naval force although some of them may have had a smaller navy. The Vakataka territory appears to have been landlocked so very likely to be one of the kingdoms that did not have a navy.

Fortifications

♠ Settlements in a defensive position ♣ present ♥ Commenting on Jean Deloche's 'Studies on Fortification in India' a book reviewer says that fort construction "with long-term building and modification programs ... became the focal point for local populations as well as for their leaders" and often were "placed at points on the landscape that already were natural strongholds and places of ritual devolution".[145] There were "Sites of royal importance with fortifications, e.g. Pauni, Nagaradhan, Bilav-Kuji nala, Ghugusgad, etc."[146] however, what those fortification were is not stated.
♠ Wooden palisades ♣ inferred present ♥ Early Satavahanas (a few hundred years before this time): "The excavations also gave evidence of wooden palisade of the early Satavahana times which might indicate that Ter was one of the thirty fortified towns of the Satavahanas."[147]
♠ Earth ramparts ♣ present ♥ "Till date, the best study of the evolution of fortifications in India from the Indus Valley Civilization till the rise of British power, remains Deloche's monograph on fortification in India. Deloche notes that between the third and fourteenth centuries, the Hindu rulers constructed complex gateways, towers and thicker walls with earthen embankments in order to make their durgas (forts) impregnable."[148] Deloche's studies on Indian fortifications are in French. There were "Sites of royal importance with fortifications, e.g. Pauni, Nagaradhan, Bilav-Kuji nala, Ghugusgad, etc."[149] however, what those fortification were is not stated. Ditches and moats were present during the preceding Satavahana period[150] and the simpler technology of earth rampart is also likely. Kautilya's Arthasastra, written after 200 BCE, mentions ramparts constructed with earth and moats.[151]
♠ Ditch ♣ inferred present ♥ Present for the preceding Satavahana period.[152]. There were "Sites of royal importance with fortifications, e.g. Pauni, Nagaradhan, Bilav-Kuji nala, Ghugusgad, etc."[153] however, what those fortification were is not stated.
♠ Moat ♣ inferred present ♥ Moats around defensive walls are known in the Ganga valley in India from about 500 BCE, or perhaps earlier. [154] Present for the preceding Satavahana period.[155] Kautilya's Arthasastra, written after 200 BCE, mentions ramparts constructed with earth and moats.[156]
♠ Stone walls (non-mortared) ♣ suspected unknown ♥ "Bilav - Kuji Nala, district Nagpur. Remains of fortification wall.[157] During the Satavahana period towns were protected by "high walls" [158] but the construction materials and methods are not mentioned.
♠ Stone walls (mortared) ♣ inferred present ♥ "Bilav - Kuji Nala, district Nagpur. Remains of fortification wall.[159] During the Satavahana period towns were protected by "high walls" [160] but the construction materials and methods are not mentioned.
♠ Fortified camps ♣ suspected unknown ♥
♠ Complex fortifications ♣ suspected unknown ♥ There were "Sites of royal importance with fortifications, e.g. Pauni, Nagaradhan, Bilav-Kuji nala, Ghugusgad, etc."[161] however, what those fortification were is not stated.
♠ Long walls ♣ ♥ km.
♠ Modern fortifications ♣ absent ♥


Phase II Variables (polity-based)

Institutional Variables

♠ RA ♣ ♥

Limits on Power of the Chief Executive

Power distributed

♠ Constraint on executive by government ♣ ♥
♠ Constraint on executive by non-government ♣ ♥
♠ Impeachment ♣ ♥

Social Mobility

Status

Elite status

♠ elite status is hereditary ♣ present ♥ Dynastic rule. Sarvasena (~330-355 CE) founded the Vatsagulma branch of the Vakataka dynasty and he was succeeded by his son Vindhyashaki II.

Religion and Normative Ideology

♠ RA ♣ Enrico Cioni ♥

Deification of Rulers

♠ Rulers are legitimated by gods ♣ present ♥ “The magical power which pervaded the king at his consecration was restored and strengthened in the course of his reign by further rites, such as the ceremonial rejuvenation of the ‘’vajapeya’’ and the horse-sacrifice (‘’asvamedha’’, p. 42), which not only ministered to his ambition and arrogance, but also ensured the prosperity and fertility of the kingdom. Implicit in the whole brahmanic ritual was the idea of the king’s divine appointment, and though the rajasuya was replaced in later times by a simplified ‘’abhiseka’’, or baptism, the ceremony still had its magical flavour.” [162]

♠ Rulers are gods ♣ present ♥ “Divinity was cheap in ancient India. Every brahman was in a sense a god, as were ascetics with a reputation for sanctity. Householders sponsoring and financing sacrifices were in theory raised to divinity, at least for the duration of the ceremony, while even sticks and stones might be alive with inherent godhead. Moreover the gods were fallible and capable of sin. If the king was a god on earth he was only one god among many, and so his divinity might not always weigh heavily upon his subjects.” [163]

Normative Ideological Aspects of Equity and Prosociality

♠ Ideological reinforcement of equality ♣ absent ♥ Caste system. "There have been a number of attempts to underplay, to question, and to lampoon the hierarchical inequality and even the existence of the caste system. As we will also see it differs, in some degree, from region to region. However, the concepts of varna and, more importantly, jati lie at the heart of the caste system and they form an ideal core around which the complexity of detail and difference can then be erected. [...] Thus the four varnas are the Brahmins who represent priesthood and learning, the Kshatriyas who represent the warriors and kings, who protect the people, the Vaishyas who represent the people who engage in agriculture, farming and trade, and the Shudras who represent the servants who look after and serve the others. The Brahmins fulfil the function of the mouth, the Kshatriyas fulfil the function of the arms, the Vaishyas fulfil the function of the thighs, and the Shudras fulfil the function of the feet. The model is clearly a hierarchy but it is a complementary hierarchy and unity, wherein the different elements sustain one another. [...] In practice the key to the caste system are the sub-castes, or jatis. There are a great number of these in each varna, and in practice there is a hierarchy within each set so that only certain jatis can marry and eat with each other. Not all Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas or Shudras can marry or eat together. Those privileges are confined to a limited number of jatis within each varna. [...] Clearly there have been changes in the system over long centuries. Particular jatis have elevated themselves through economic means, through disputing status, through propaganda, through moving, through changing religion, and so on. But on the whole, over such a long period of time, the system has remained strong, especially in the villages. [...] The strength of the caste system has been enhanced by another principle emphasised by Dumont (1980) in his classical work entitled ‘’Homo Hierarchicus: The Caste System and its Implications’’. According to Dumont, in addition to the distinctions already outlined that fit varnas and jatis into hierarchies, another must be added. This distinction takes caste hierarchical divides beyond the kind of class distinctions found in eighteenth-century Britain or in the Ancien Regime in Europe, by stressing the opposition between purity and pollution. Caste difference, according to this classification, goes beyond class differences into this other realm of ritual purity and pollution. The Brahmins are the highest and purest varna, and the Dalits are the lowest, in that they are outside varna and are impure altogether. The other varnas rank in between. Pollution occurs in different ways. It occurs through bodily contact of one sort or another, with menstrual cycles, through birth and death, through emissions such as faeces, urine and saliva, and through contact with night-soil, dirty clothes, unswept rooms and so on. Thus marriage and sex have to function within the correct set of jatis in the correct varna. Polluting jobs such as laundering and sweeping are done by people of lower castes so that the blood of people of higher castes can remain ‘pure’. Equally menstrual activity among older women makes them more ‘impure’ than men or pre-menstrual virgins, and therefore women are more polluting than men. They will thus often live semi-separately while menstruating, during which time they will also avoid going to the temple and therefore ‘polluting’ the gods. Furthermore, untouchable Dalits were prohibited from entering many temples before the post-Independence freedom-of-temple-entry legislation and even now they are kept out of some temples in many villages. [...] It is also true to say that Dumont’s thesis suffers from exaggeration and other matters are important in discussing caste. Nevertheless, there is at least an element of truth in the notion that purity and pollution has relevance in any discussion of caste.” [164]

♠ Ideological thought equates rulers and commoners ♣ absent ♥ Caste system. "There have been a number of attempts to underplay, to question, and to lampoon the hierarchical inequality and even the existence of the caste system. As we will also see it differs, in some degree, from region to region. However, the concepts of varna and, more importantly, jati lie at the heart of the caste system and they form an ideal core around which the complexity of detail and difference can then be erected. [...] Thus the four varnas are the Brahmins who represent priesthood and learning, the Kshatriyas who represent the warriors and kings, who protect the people, the Vaishyas who represent the people who engage in agriculture, farming and trade, and the Shudras who represent the servants who look after and serve the others. The Brahmins fulfil the function of the mouth, the Kshatriyas fulfil the function of the arms, the Vaishyas fulfil the function of the thighs, and the Shudras fulfil the function of the feet. The model is clearly a hierarchy but it is a complementary hierarchy and unity, wherein the different elements sustain one another. [...]In practice the key to the caste system are the sub-castes, or jatis. There are a great number of these in each varna, and in practice there is a hierarchy within each set so that only certain jatis can marry and eat with each other. Not all Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas or Shudras can marry or eat together. Those privileges are confined to a limited number of jatis within each varna. [...] Clearly there have been changes in the system over long centuries. Particular jatis have elevated themselves through economic means, through disputing status, through propaganda, through moving, through changing religion, and so on. But on the whole, over such a long period of time, the system has remained strong, especially in the villages. [...] The strength of the caste system has been enhanced by another principle emphasised by Dumont (1980) in his classical work entitled ‘’Homo Hierarchicus: The Caste System and its Implications’’. According to Dumont, in addition to the distinctions already outlined that fit varnas and jatis into hierarchies, another must be added. This distinction takes caste hierarchical divides beyond the kind of class distinctions found in eighteenth-century Britain or in the Ancien Regime in Europe, by stressing the opposition between purity and pollution. Caste difference, according to this classification, goes beyond class differences into this other realm of ritual purity and pollution. The Brahmins are the highest and purest varna, and the Dalits are the lowest, in that they are outside varna and are impure altogether. The other varnas rank in between. Pollution occurs in different ways. It occurs through bodily contact of one sort or another, with menstrual cycles, through birth and death, through emissions such as faeces, urine and saliva, and through contact with night-soil, dirty clothes, unswept rooms and so on. Thus marriage and sex have to function within the correct set of jatis in the correct varna. Polluting jobs such as laundering and sweeping are done by people of lower castes so that the blood of people of higher castes can remain ‘pure’. Equally menstrual activity among older women makes them more ‘impure’ than men or pre-menstrual virgins, and therefore women are more polluting than men. They will thus often live semi-separately while menstruating, during which time they will also avoid going to the temple and therefore ‘polluting’ the gods. Furthermore, untouchable Dalits were prohibited from entering many temples before the post-Independence freedom-of-temple-entry legislation and even now they are kept out of some temples in many villages. [...] It is also true to say that Dumont’s thesis suffers from exaggeration and other matters are important in discussing caste. Nevertheless, there is at least an element of truth in the notion that purity and pollution has relevance in any discussion of caste.” [165]
♠ Ideological thought equates elites and commoners ♣ absent ♥ Caste system. "There have been a number of attempts to underplay, to question, and to lampoon the hierarchical inequality and even the existence of the caste system. As we will also see it differs, in some degree, from region to region. However, the concepts of varna and, more importantly, jati lie at the heart of the caste system and they form an ideal core around which the complexity of detail and difference can then be erected. [...] Thus the four varnas are the Brahmins who represent priesthood and learning, the Kshatriyas who represent the warriors and kings, who protect the people, the Vaishyas who represent the people who engage in agriculture, farming and trade, and the Shudras who represent the servants who look after and serve the others. The Brahmins fulfil the function of the mouth, the Kshatriyas fulfil the function of the arms, the Vaishyas fulfil the function of the thighs, and the Shudras fulfil the function of the feet. The model is clearly a hierarchy but it is a complementary hierarchy and unity, wherein the different elements sustain one another. [...]In practice the key to the caste system are the sub-castes, or jatis. There are a great number of these in each varna, and in practice there is a hierarchy within each set so that only certain jatis can marry and eat with each other. Not all Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas or Shudras can marry or eat together. Those privileges are confined to a limited number of jatis within each varna. [...] Clearly there have been changes in the system over long centuries. Particular jatis have elevated themselves through economic means, through disputing status, through propaganda, through moving, through changing religion, and so on. But on the whole, over such a long period of time, the system has remained strong, especially in the villages. [...] The strength of the caste system has been enhanced by another principle emphasised by Dumont (1980) in his classical work entitled ‘’Homo Hierarchicus: The Caste System and its Implications’’. According to Dumont, in addition to the distinctions already outlined that fit varnas and jatis into hierarchies, another must be added. This distinction takes caste hierarchical divides beyond the kind of class distinctions found in eighteenth-century Britain or in the Ancien Regime in Europe, by stressing the opposition between purity and pollution. Caste difference, according to this classification, goes beyond class differences into this other realm of ritual purity and pollution. The Brahmins are the highest and purest varna, and the Dalits are the lowest, in that they are outside varna and are impure altogether. The other varnas rank in between. Pollution occurs in different ways. It occurs through bodily contact of one sort or another, with menstrual cycles, through birth and death, through emissions such as faeces, urine and saliva, and through contact with night-soil, dirty clothes, unswept rooms and so on. Thus marriage and sex have to function within the correct set of jatis in the correct varna. Polluting jobs such as laundering and sweeping are done by people of lower castes so that the blood of people of higher castes can remain ‘pure’. Equally menstrual activity among older women makes them more ‘impure’ than men or pre-menstrual virgins, and therefore women are more polluting than men. They will thus often live semi-separately while menstruating, during which time they will also avoid going to the temple and therefore ‘polluting’ the gods. Furthermore, untouchable Dalits were prohibited from entering many temples before the post-Independence freedom-of-temple-entry legislation and even now they are kept out of some temples in many villages. [...] It is also true to say that Dumont’s thesis suffers from exaggeration and other matters are important in discussing caste. Nevertheless, there is at least an element of truth in the notion that purity and pollution has relevance in any discussion of caste.” [166]
♠ production of public goods ♣ suspected unknown ♥ absent/present/unknown. Public Goods refer to anything that incurs cost to an individual or group of individuals, but that can be used or enjoyed by others who did not incur any of the cost, namely the public at large. They are non-excludable and non-rivalrous goods. Examples are roads, public drinking fountains, public parks or theatres, temples open to the public, etc.

Moralizing Supernatural Powers

♠ Moral concern is primary ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement is certain ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing norms are broad ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement is targeted ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement of rulers ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing religion adopted by elites ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing religion adopted by commoners ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement in afterlife ♣ present ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement in this life ♣ absent ♥
♠ Moralizing enforcement is agentic ♣ absent ♥

These data were reviewed by expert advisors and consultants. For a detailed description of these data, refer to the relevant Analytic Narratives, reference tables, and acknowledgements page. [167] [168] [169]

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