Indian History InfoBank – A to Z Category Wise All Indian History Notes as Pdf

By | June 23, 2020
Complete Indian History in Short

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Abdul Ghaffar Khan: He was popularly known as ‘Frontier Gandhi’. Refer Red Shirts and also under Civil Disobedience Movement.

Abdur Rahim Khan-i-Khanan: lived during the reign of Akbar. He translated Babar’s Memoirs from Turki to Persian.

Abdur Razzaq: was a Persian traveller who visited Vijayanagar during the reign of Deva Raya II (1425-46).

Abdussamad: He was honoured with the award of “zari-qalam” by Akbar.

Abhinav Bharat Society: It was a secret terrorist organisation formed by V.D. Savarkar.

Abhiras: were an immigrant non-Aryan tribe of ancient India. They were Central Asian nomads of Scythian stock.

Acharya Narendra Dev: was a prominent leader of the Congress Socialist Party.

Agha Khan: He ia known to have led the deputation of Muslim leaders to the Viceroy, Lord Minto II, in 1906, seeking separate electorates for Muslims in any representative system which might be introduced.

Ahmad Shah Abdali: The invasion of Ahmed Shah Abdali in the third battle of Panipat in 1761, gave a death blow to the political fortunes of Marhattas.

Ahmadnagar: is associated with Nizam Shahi.

Ahmedabad city: on the left bank of the Sabarmati river, was built by Ahmad Shah.

Aihole: in Karnataka contains chief sites of Chalukyan architecture. Aihole inscription gives information regarding Pulakesin-II.

Ajanta Paintings: depict scenes from the Jataka stories which form the main theme of these paintings.

Ajivika: Ajivika sect was founded by Gosala Maskriputra who flourished during the Mauryan period and had lived with Mahavira for six years and subsequently left him and became the leader of the Ajivika sect.

Akbar: He was not influenced by earlier rulers so far as religious tolerance was concerned.

Akbarnama: It was written by Abul Fazl, the celebrated Mughal court poet and councilor of Akbar.

Akot: is a town, about 42 km from Akola, from where a stone idol of Lord Adinath, the first Jain Teerthankar, was found in 1993.

Ala-ud-din Khilji: He introduced price control covering almost the entire market. Grain was rationed and the price fixed.

Khalsah (crown land) increased considerably under Ala-ud-din Khilji. According to historian V.A. Smith, “Ala-ud-din Khilji introduced an economic policy to check Mongol invaders”. ‘Iqta, a land-grant system, was introduced by him. He challenged the authority of ‘Khalifa’.

Copper coins were started by him. Jaziya tax was collected from non-Muslims during his reign. He sent Malik Kafur to Deccan for conquest.

Alberuni: He was a celebrated Muslim historian who visited India in company with the armies of Mahmud of Ghazni. He was also a Sanskrit scholar. He wrote ‘Tahqiq-i-Hind’

Alexander: invaded India in 326 B.C.

Alfonso-de-Albuquerque: was the real founder of the Portuguese Empire in India. He was the first governor of Portuguese possessions in the East. He conquered Goa in 1510 and made it his capital. He died in 1515.

Aligarh Muslim University: was founded by Sir Syed Ahmed Khan.

Allahabad Pillar inscription: provides us useful information about Samudragupta.

Amarasimha: was one of the nine gems in the court of the legendary Vikramaditya. His work Amarkosha occupies a dominant position in Sanskrit lexicography.

Amir Khusrau: (1255-1325) wrote prose and poetic works in Persian, Hindi, and Arabic. Surnamed as the “Parrot of India”, he was a contemporary of Sultan Balban.

Amri Culture: flourished in Baluchistan.

Amritsar city: was founded by Guru Ram Dass in 1577. The place for Amritsar was given to Guru Ram Dass by the Mughal Emperor Akbar.

Angkor Vat: a ruined city in Kampuchia (Cambodia) where beautiful specimens of ancient Indian art
and culture are found. Here Indian expertise has been used in archaeological restoration of the monuments.

Anglo-Mysore War, Third: was fought between the English under Cornwallis and Tipu Sultan in 1790-92. Tipu Sultan had to submit and was compelled to sign the Treaty of Seringapattam.

Anushilan Samiti: was formed by Sri Aurobindo Ghosh.

Apabhramsa: This term was used in medieval Sanskrit texts to denote early forms of some of the modern Indian languages.

Apastamba: is named after a native of Andhra, whose rules are observed mainly in Andhra state; his sutras are based on a Black Yajur-veda of South India.

Arjun Dev, Guru: He was the fifth Guru of the Sikhs. He was put to death by the Mughal emperor Jehangir. He is associated with Adi Granth.

Arsha: “rishi-like” marriage current only among priestly families. A cow or a bull is given as a token bride price.

Arthasastra: by Kautilya or Chanakya is a compendium of almost all the ancient works on artha (economics). The text was discovered only in 1905. It is divided into fifteen books treating of a variety of political topics.
As per Arthasastra, a permanent peace is not possible.

Arya Samaj: was founded by Dayanand Saraswati. It opposed idolatry; encouraged conversion to Hinduism and condemned casteism.

Aryabhatta: (476-520 A.D.) after whom India’s first scientific satellite has been named, was a great Indian astronomer and mathematician. He was a contemporary of Chandra Gupta-II.

He was the first Indian scholar who treated Mathematics as a distinct subject and pointed out the importance of “Zero”. He is also credited with the invention of Algebra.

Aryans: Aryans originally came from Central Asia. Cattle-rearing was their main occupation. For them, cow was the measure of value and an object of veneration.

Aryans and Non-Aryans: We acquire the knowledge of the battle between the Aryans and the non-Aryans from Vedas

Asanga: was a Buddhist philosopher. He was the originator of Buddhist Yogachara idealism.

Ashoka, the Great: (264-228 B.C.) Indian Emperor, grandson of Chandragupta. He denounced war, embraced and preached Buddhism after the bloody battle of Kalinga.

The mighty empire of the Mauryans began to decline after the death of Ashoka.

Ashokan inscriptions: were first deciphered in 1837 by James Prinsep, a civil servant in the employ of the East India Company in Bengal. These Ashokan Inscriptions were engraved in Brahmi script in Prakrit language.

In Rock Edict-I, Ashoka forbids the slaughter and sacrifice of animals. In Rock Edict-II, the Pandyas, the Keralaputras and the Satyaputras are mentioned as Ashoka’s neighbouring powers.

In his inscriptions at Maski and Gujarra, Ashoka has been mentioned by name. In Junagarh inscription, Ashoka and Chandragupta Maurya have been mentioned together.

Ashta Pradhan: A council of ministers which helped Shivaji in the discharge of State Affairs.

Ashtadhyaya: was written by Panini.

Ashtapradhan: was the Council of Ministers during the reign of Shivaji.

Ashvaghosha: was the spiritual adviser of Kanishka (the Kushan emperor) who took a leading part in the Fourth Buddhist Council at Srinagar which was presided by Vasumitra.

He was a renowned Mahayana Sanskrit scholar and author of Sariputra-prakarana. He was the greatest literary figure of Kanishka’s court.

Asiatic Society: Of Calcutta, was founded in 1784 by Sir William Jones to enquire into history, antiquities, arts, science and literature of Asia.

Asura: named after the Asuras, is marriage by sale of the bride. The Asura marriage was condemned by Manu and the law books as immoral.

Atharva Veda: deals with charms and spells to ward off evils and disease.

Atharvaveda: Principles and poractice of medical science can be traced back to Atharvaveda.

Attlee, Clement: was the Prime Minister of England at the time of grant of independence to India in 1947.

Aurangzeb: was the third son of Shah Jahan, who ruled as Mughal Emperor (1658-1707). He levied higher trade duties on Hindu traders in 1679. He re-imposed Jaziya. He is known for his ruinous Deccan policy.

He made a serious mistake in conquering the Muslim kingdoms of Bijapur and Golkonda in the Deccan. Had he befriended them, these states could have served as a check upon the Marathas.

Ayas: This term in Rid Veda means iron.


Babar: was founder of the Mughal Empire in India.

Babar’s Memoirs: Babar wrote his memoirs in Turkish language.

Babar and Jehangir: were the Mughal Emperors who wrote their autobiographies.

Back to the Vedas: was the watchword of Dayanand Saraswati.

Bactrian Greeks: were the first to invade and rule north-western India.

Bahadur Shah ‘Zafar’: was the last Mughal Emperor who took part in the First War of Indian Independence (so-called Indian Mutiny) in 1857. He was exiled by the British as a State prisoner to Burma where he died in 1862 the Mughal Emperor whose tomb is outside India.

Bahmani kingdom: was founded by Hasan Gangoo entitled Zafar Khan.

Bakht Khan: During the revolt of 1857, he was the Chief Commander of troops in Delhi.

Balaji Vishwanath: was the first Peshwa appointed on Nov 16, 1713.

Balban, Ghiyas-ud-din: He belonged to the famous band of Turkish slaves of Iltumish, known as “The Forty”. The period of Balban as a king was 1265-86.

He established pure Turkish State. He introduced in his court Turkish style and etiquette. In order to raise the prestige and power of the king, he introduced the methods and customs of Sajada and Paibos.

Balban introduced the famous Persian festival of Nauroj in India. The “College of Forty” formed during the reign of Iltumish, was broken by Balban.

Banabhatta: was the most celebrated of the learned men and court poet of Harshavardhana. He was the author of Harshacharita and Kadambri. Bana gave the major source of information about Harsha.

Banda Bahadur: The original name of Banda Bahadur, a Rajput of Dogra tribe, was Lachhman Das.

Bardoli Satyagraha: Bardoli in Gujarat is famous for non-payment of taxes campaign by land owners, led successfully by Sardar Patel in 1928. Patel’s efficient leadership in this campaign earned him the title of Sardar.

Barhaiya Tal agitation in Monghyr: Its aim was to demand restoration of bakasht lands.

Barhara Tribes: The Barhara tribes mentioned in the Mahabharata who had settled in the north-western regions of India, are associated with (1) Ambashthas (a mixed Mongolian Aryan race); (2) Gandharas (Afghans); (3) Pavas (Parthians); (4) Sakas (Scythians; (5) Yavanas (Greeks).

Battle of Buxar: In this battle in 1764, the British forces under Hector Munro defeated the Muslim army under three Mohammedan leaders, Mir Kasim, Nawab Shuja-ud-daulah and the Emperor Shah Alam-II.

Battle of Kanwah: was fought in 1527 in which Babar defeated Rana Sanga of Mewar. This battle resulted in the defeat of powerful Rajput confederacy.

Battle of Panipat, First: In this battle fought in 1526, Babar defeated Ibrahim Lodhi and laid the foundation of Mughal rule in India.

Babar won this battle mainly because of his military skill (superior strategy and generalship) and the use of artillery for the first time in India.

Battle of Panipat, Second: It took place in 1556 in which Bairam Khan (Akbar’s General) defeated Hemu (the Hindu General and right-hand man of Mohd Adil Shah). It ended the Afghan Rule and Mughal rule began instead.

Battle of Plassey: In this battle in 1757, the English under Lord Clive defeated Siraj-ud-Daulah (supported by the French forces). It brought Muslim rule in Bengal to an end and laid foundations of the British rule in India.

Battle of San Thomas: This battle during the Carnatic Wars (1746-61) definitely proved for the first time the superiority of European arms and discipline over the traditional Indian methods of warfare.

Baudhayana: It represents a South Indian school of the Black Yajur-veda.

Bengal partition, First: The first partition of Bengal was done in 1905 during the Viceroyalty of Lord Curzon. It was revoked in 1911.

Bengal Regulation Act of 1793: Its significance lies in the fact that it accommodated the personal laws of Hindus and Muslims.

Bentinck, Lord William: is associated with Prohibition of Sati.

Berar: is associated with Imad Shahi

Besant Annie: She was the first woman President of the Indian National Congress in 1917. She had founded the Home Rule League in 1915.

She is described as theosophist, educationist and Indian nationalist. (Sarojini Naidu was the second woman President of the Indian National Congress in 1925).

Bhadrabahu: was a Jain teacher during the reign of Chandragupta Maurya. He was author of ‘A life of Mahavira’.

Bhagavata Cult: Gupta kings contributed most to this cult. Bhagavatism or Vaishnavism over-shadowed Mahayana Buddhism and preached the doctrine of the incarnation, or avtara.

BharatNatyam & Classic Poses: The classic poses of Bharata Natyam, an ancient form of dance, originated in the South India around Thanjavur, are sculptured on the walls of the temple at Chidambaram.

Bharatavarsha: was a part of Jambudweepa, according to the ancient geographical concept.

Bhaskara or Bhaskaracharya: Born in 1114 A.D., was almost the last great Hindu mathematician and astronomer until modern times. He wrote Sidhanta-siromani in 1150.

Bhaskaravarman: was the king of Kamarupa (Upper Assam). He was a contemporary of king Sasanka of Gauda and was his arch- enemy. Bhaskaravarman was the eastern ally of king Harsha.

Bhoja king: He was a great patron of literature and art. He belonged to the Gurjara Pratihara dynasty.

Bhoodan Movement: was started by Acharya Vinoba Bhave.

Bijapur: is associated with Adil Shahi.

Bilhana: He was Sanskrit historian and poet born in Kashmir, He left Kashmir about 1065 A.D. and became the court poet at Kalyana where he wrote an epic, Vikramankadeva-charita to celebrate the reign of Vikramaditya VI, the Chalukya king of Kalyana.

Bindusara: was the Mauryan Ruler who was also known by the name ‘Amitraghata’. He succeeded Chandragupta Maurya.

Black Hole Tragedy: occurred during the reign of Siraj-ud-Dowla.

Black-Hole tragedy: occurred during the period of Siraj-ud-Dowlah, Nawab of Bengal.

Blue Water Policy: The “Blue Water” policy is attributed to Don Francisco de Almeida, the first Viceroy of the Portuguese possessions in India. His “Blue Water” policy was to be powerful at the sea instead of building fortresses on Indian land.

Boghaz Koi inscriptions: is important in Indian history because inscriptions of the fourteenth century B.C. discovered here mention the names of Vedic gods and goddesses.

Bombay: was taken by the English East India Company from Charles II. It was acquired by England from Portugal.

Bose, Subhash Chandra: better known as Netaji of Azad Hind Fauj (Indian National Army INA), was a powerful nationalist leader and was also once elected President of the Indian National Congress. He gained much prominence for organising INA during world war II.

In his speech, while inaugurating the Azad Hind Fauj in Singapore, he gave a stirring call to his soldiers “Give me blood and I shall give you freeedom”.

Rightly called the Beacon of light of Asia, he was the first to address Mahatma Gandhi as Father of the Nation.

In a message to Gandhiji, in a broadcast from Azad Hind Radio, Rangoon, on July 8, 1944, he said, “Father of our Nation! In this holy war of India’s liberation, we ask you for your blessings and good wishes”.

Mahatma Gandhi described him as Patriot of Patriots. The ashes of Subhash Chandra Bose are kept in Renkoji temple in Tokyo.

Brahmacharya, Grihastashrama, Vanaprastha, Sanyas: Such divisions of life-span was a post-Vedic development.

Brahmagupta: (598-660) of Ujjain, was a great mathematician of his time.

Brahman: is the central theme in the Upanishads.

Brahmanas: Though belonging to the Vedas, they are considered apart from the Vedas, as they express notions that have a character and quality of their own. The Brahmanas stress the importance of prayer, sacrifice, rituals etc and emphasise the observance of caste and the asramas.

This led to an elaborate formulary and to the domination of the Brahmin priesthood. 800 B.C.-600 B.C. is designated as the period of Brahamanas. The “fish-legend” first appears in the Brahmanas.

Brahmi: Majority of Ashoka’s script were written in Brahmi script.

Brahmo Samaj: was founded by Raja Ram Mohan Roy.

Brahui: is a language of Baluchistan. Linguistically, it is Dravidian.

Brhadaranyaka Upanishad: In this Upanishad, we get the first glimpse of the “doctrine of transmigration”.

Brihadisvara temple: in Thanjavur (Tamil Nadu) is the finest and most elaborate temple of Chola architecture. It was built during the reign of Rajaraja Chola.

British Indian Society: was the first political organisation established in India in 1838.

Buddha: (623-543 B.C.) He was the son of Suddhodana, a Kshatriya king and a member of the Gautama clan of the Sakya. Hence, he is often called Sakyamuni. Buddha’s own name was Siddhartha. He was born in 567 B.C. at Lumbini village in the Nepalese Terai.

He renounced the world at the age of 29 and became a great religious teacher. His preachings were mainly in regard to purity of thought and conduct. He denounced Brahminism.

He is said to have meditated at Bodhgaya where he attained full enlightenment on Vaishakha Purnima day at the age of 35. His famous first sermon , the Dharma-chakra-Pravartana or Setting in Motion the Wheel of Law, was delivered by him in the Deer Park at Sarnath near Banaras (Varanasi).

Buddha died in 483 B.C. under a sal tree at Kusinagara (modern Kasia) in the Gorakhpur district of U.P. At the time of his death at the age of 80, Buddha’s last words to his favourite disciple Ananda, were: “Look not for the refuge to any one besides yourself.”

Relics of Buddha are preserved in a stupa. Buddha is the last historical incarnation of Vishnu.

Buddhism: Buddhism was founded by a Kshatriya prince Sidharatha born in 567 B.C. at Lumbini village in the Nepalese Terai.

Buddha laid stress on the Four Noble Truths and pursuit of the Noble eight-fold path for which he preached ten commandments for elimination of human misery. The crux of early Buddhism was renunciation of desire.

Buddhism became a global religion due to efforts of king Ashoka. To preach Buddhist doctrines, Ashoka sent his son Mahendra and his daughter Sanghamitta to Ceylon (Sri Lanka).

Mahayana and Hinayana are the two divisons of Buddhism. Mahayanism came into existence in the time of Kanishka.

The Buddhism which ignored the Divine (worship of gods and goddesses) was known in later times as the Hinayana or Lesser Vehicle of salvation, while the modified religion which recognised the value of prayer and acknowledged Buddha as the incarnation of an eternal heavenly Buddha was called the Mahayana, or the Greater Vehicle Buddha was strongly opposed to religious rituals, ceremonial worship, sacrificial system, and the idea of caste system.

Buddha preached in the language of the people and did not harp on the caste system. Buddhidm became very popular in India during Buddha’s life time.

Buddhism and Jainism: The common features of both were: (1) Indifference to the authorities of the Vedas; (2) Denial of efficacy of rituals; and (3) Non-injury to animal life.

Buddhist Councils: The first Buddhist Council was held at Rajagriha shortly after Buddha’s death. A second Council was held at Vaisali in which the disciples of Buddha divided into two sections viz., Sthavirvadins and Mahasanghikas; a third at Pataliputra (during the reign of Ashoka), 236 years after his death, and a fourth Council was held at Srinagar (Kashmir) under the patronage of Kanishka, the Kushan king. It was presided by Vasumitra.
Harshavardhana summoned two Buddhist Assemblies in the year 643 A.D. one at Kanauj (the fifth one) and the other at Prayag, the sixth one.

Buddhist literature: was written in Pali language.

Buland Darwaza: in Fatehpur-Sikri near Agra, was built to commemorate Akbar’s conquest of Gujarat.


Cabinet Mission: On February 14, 1946, a Cabinet Mission was proposed to be sent to India by Britain’s new Labour Party Prime Minister, Mr Atlee. The Mission consisted of Lord Pathick Lawrence, Sir Stafford Cripps, and Mr A.V. Alexander which soon came to India and met the Indian leaders to negotiate handing over power.

Its recommendations were:

  1. There should be a Union of India comprising British India and the Indian States;
  2. The federal centre should have control over defence, foreign affairs and communications;
  3. The Provinces should form three groups: (1) Group of the Hindu majority provinces Bombay, Central Provnces, U.P., Madras, Bihar, Orissa, Delhi, Ajmer-Marwar and Coorg; (2) Group of the Muslim Majority Provinces Punjab, NWFP, Baluchistan and Sind; (3) Group of Bengal and Assam.
  4. A Constituent Assembly should be set up for the Union;
  5. Any Province could withdraw from any Group after the first general election.

The Mission also recommended that an interim Government should be formed by the major political parties.
The Commission rejected demand of the Muslim League for division of India i.e., creation of Pakistan.

Canning, Lord: was the last Governor-General of (British) India. He also became the first Viceroy of India.
(C. Rajagopalachari was the first and the last Indian Governor-General of Free India; The first British Governor-General of Free India was Lord Mountbatten).

Catching the butterflies and setting them free: was the prominent feature of the foreign policy of Samudragupta.

Chalcolithic Age: means the stone-copper phase. The end of the Neolithic period saw the use of metals. The metal to be used first was copper. Technologically, chalcolithic stage applied to the pre-Harappans. The Indus Valley Civilization belonged to the Chalcolithic Age.

Chanakya: or Kautilya, was also known as Vishnugupta. He was a great politician who helped Chandragupta Maurya in securing political power. He was a practical statesman of high ability. He wrote Arthashastra . He was a Brahmin.

According to Arthashastra, divorce to a wife deserted by her husband is allowed.

Chand Bardai: was court poet of Prithviraj Chauhan. He composed the epic Prithviraj Raso the story of the prowess and romance of Prithviraj Chauhan.

Chand Bibi: who ceded Berar to Akbar’s forces, was the ruler of Ahmednagar.

Chandernagore: was a French possession before its merger with India.

Chandragupta Maurya: was the famous ruler of ancient India, known for establishing an elaborate system of municipal administration.

His empire extended in the North-West up to Hindukush. During his reign, the Greek ambassador Megasthenes visited his court. According to Buddhist source, Chandragupta Maurya was a Sudra.

Towards the end of his life, he is said to have converted to Jainism, abdicated in favour of his son and became an ascetic.

Chandu Shah: On his persuasion, Guru Arjan Dev was executed by Jahangir in 1605.

Charaka: (About 80-180 A.D.) was the court physician to Kanishka, the Kushan king. His work on Ayurvedic medical science remains invaluable in the study of Hindu medicine.

Sasruta, the great book on medicine, was written by him.

Charter Act of 1833: Under this Act, the title of Governor General of India was substituted for that of Governor General of Bengal.

Charvaka: is known as the greatest of the materialistic philosophers of ancient India. The Charvakas advocated a life of sensible enjoyment and declared: ‘While you live, live well, even if you have to borrow; for once cremated there is no return’.

Chashma Shahi: in Srinagar (Kashmir), was built by Shah Jahan.

Chauri Chaura violence: Mahatma Gandhi withdrew the Satyagraha Movement in 1922 on account of Chauri Chaura violence.

Chauth: was a contribution exacted by a military leader , which was justified by the exigencies of the situation. It was a tribute realised from hostile or conquered territories, the imposition of which amounted to one-fourth of the government revenue. In practice it was nothing but a military contribution levied by Shivaji.

Chengez Khan: belonged to Mongol tribe. He is known as one of the “Scourges of God”. He invaded India in 1221 A.D. during the rule of Iltumish.

Chhotanagpur Revolt: was a minor tribal revolt which took place in 1858-59.

Chittagon Armoury Raid: Surya Sen was responsible for it.

Chittor: is associated with Rana Pratap.

Chola Dynasty: was an ancient Tamil kingdom along the banks of the river Cauvery. They were the first to use navy.

Chola kingdom: was the ancient Tamil kingdom which flourished on the lower east coast of India along the banks of the river Kaveri (now Cauvery). The Chola power reached its zenith under Rajaraja-I. The masterpiece of Chola architecture is the great Siva temple at their capital at Thanjavur (Tanjore).

Village autonomy was a unique feature of their administrative system. Chola reign was best known for Local Self-Governent.

Civil Disobedience Movement: To work towards the achievement of the goal for independence, Gandhi drew up a civil disobedience plan by breaking the salt laws. On March 12, 1930, at the age of 61, Gandhiji set out on foot on a march from Sabarmati Ashram to a small village Dandi on the seashore of Gujarat. About 79 Ashramites followed him. The triumphant march, known as Dandi March reached Dandi after covering a distance of 241 miles in 24 days. All along the route, thousands of people greeted him and took vow to shake the roots of British Empire through a non-violent movement.

On reaching the seashore on April 5, Gandhiji broke the salt Law by picking up salt from the seashore. The whole country was electrified at the news. Swiftly the law-breaking movement swept across the country. Another round of boycott of foreign goods and picketing of liquor shops was witnessed on a massive scale. Even women participated the movement in large numbers.

Soon thereafter followed extremely repressive measures such as mass arrests, lathi-charges, police firing, gagging of the Indian press. About one lakh people were arrested and sent to jails. Jawahar Lal Nehru was also arrested. Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan was held at Peshawar. Gandhiji was arrested and imprisoned in Yervada Central Jail, Pune (Poona).

Coinage in ancient India: nishka and satamana in the Vedic texts are taken to be names of coins, but they seem to be only prestige objects. Coins made of metal first appeared in the age of Gautama Buddha.. The earliest are made largely of silver though a few copper coins also appear.

They are called punch-marked because pieces of these metals were punched with certain marks such as tree, fish, bull, elephant, hill etc.

Coins in Gupta period: The Guptas had issued the largest number of coins made up of silver.

College of Forty: formed during the reign of Iltumish , was broken by Balban.

Columbus: discovered America in 1492.

Copper Coins: were issued by Mohammad Tughlak.

Cornwallis, Lord: was British Governor-General of India (1786-93; 2nd term 1805). He established the Thanas (police stations) and put the Police Department under a District Magistrate. He is known as the founder of Indian Civil Service.

Cow ( in Vedic economy): In the early Vedic economy. cow was the important form of wealth.

Cripps Mission: visited India on March 22, 1942 during the reign of Lord Linlithgo.

Curzon, Lord: is associated with Partition of Bengal.


Dadu: was the saint from Gujarat who preached non-sectarianism in medieval times. He founded the “Brahma-Sampardaaya” (the sect of Brahma).

Dalhousie, Lord: is associated with Doctrine of Lapse. He induced English Companies to undertake construction of Railways and Telegraphs.

Dandi March: Dandi is a small village on the sea-shore of Gujarat. It is associated with Mahatma Gandhi’s long march on foot from Sabarmati Ashram to Dandi. The march started on March 12, 1930 and reached Dandi on April 5. There, he broke the salt laws by picking up salt from the sea.

This triggered non-violent civil disobedience movement on a massive scale in the country. Dandi March had no parallel in the history of mankind. Gandhiji was accompanied among others by Jawahar Lal Nehru and Sarojini Naidu.

Dandin: was Sanskrit prose writer and poet. He is author of Dasa-kumar-charita and Kavyadarsa.

Dara: was one of the sons of Shah Jahan who translated the Upanishads and had great respect for Vedas.

Darius: was the Iranian ruler who penetrated into north-west India and annexed Punjab in 516 B.C.

Dasavatara Temple: This Saivite temple is at Deogarh, near Jhansi (U.P.), built in 1510 A.D.

Dass, C.R.: was Indian politician and leader of the Swaraj Paarty in Bengal.

Dastak: was the permit which protected the East India Company (after 1757) from inspection and payment of customs. It was freely used for every kind of transaction.

Dasyus: As mentioned in the Vedic literature, Dasyus were the original inhabitants of India before the coming of Aryans.

Delhi: was made the capital of British rule in India in 1911 during the Viceroylty of Lord Hardinge. The capital was transferred from Calcutta to Delhi.

Delhi Sultans born of Hindu mothers: were Firoz Tughlaq, Sikander Lodi, Nasiruddin Khusrau, and Ghyasuddin Tughlaq.

Devagiri: was the capital of Yadavas in northern Deccan. It was attacked by Ala-ud-din Khilji in 1296. The Yadav king was defeated and had to enter into a treaty by paying a vast amount of gold.

Devaraya-II: was the king of Vijayanagar, who appointed Muslims in his army, granted land to them, built a mosque and kept a copy of the Koran before his throne, so that the Muslims could pay respect to it.

Dhama (of Ashoka): was a superb document of essential humanness. This Mauryan concept was a plea for the recognition of the dignity of man, and for a humanistic spirit in the activities of society.

Dhammapada: was the first major work to say that salvation by means of devotion is open to humans regardless of birth, gender or station in life.

Dhanvantri: was a great physician during the reign of Chandragupta Vikramaditya. He is considered to be the father of Ayurveda.

Dharmachakra: In the Gandhara art, it is the preaching mudra associated with the Buddha’s First Sermon at Sarnath.

Dharmapala: was son of Gopala of the famous Pala dynasty . He was one of the greatest kings that ever ruled Bengal. His accession to the throne took place about 780 A.D.

In the course of his long reign of at least 32 years, he raised Bengal to the position of the premier state in Northern India and did much to restore the greatness of the old imperial city of Pataliputra.

He was involved in a contest with the Pratiharas and the Rashtrakutas.

Dhillika (Delhi): The city of Dhillika (Delhi), meaning by that term the old town near the Kutb Minar, was founded in 736 A.D. It was held by Rajas of the Tomara Rajput clans who erected numerous temples, which were destroyed by the Muslims. It gained importance during the time of Ananga Pala Tomara. In the 12th century, the city was included in the dominions of Prithviraj Chauhan.

Diadotus: was founder of the Bactrian-Greeks dynasty whose territorial sway extended over Persia and north-west India.

Dili Chalo: was the call given by Subhash Chandra Bose to the soldiers of Azad Hind Fauj..

Dilwara Temples: are world famous 11th and 12th century marble temples in Rajasthan. These are being reconstructed and restored to their original splendour.

Dilwara temples are in Mt Abu (Rajasthan).

Din-i-Ilahi: Akbar founded this religion in 1582 which means Divine faith.

Diwan-i-Arz: is associated with Military department.

Diwan-i-Bandagani: is associated with Department of slaves.

Diwani-i-Kohi: is associated with Agricultural department.

Diwan-i-Wazarat: is associated with Finance department.

Do or die: Gandhiji exhorted the people to join the “Quit India” Movement of August 1942 and laid stress upon a number of things, one of which was: Do or Die (Either free India or die in the attempt).

Doctrine of Lapse: Lord Dalhousie (1848-56) laid it as a principle that on the death of a ruling prince without direct descendants, the British Government should refuse to sanction the adoption of an heir and declare the dominions of the deceased as “lapsed to the sovereign power by total failure of heirs natural”. This is known as Doctrine of Lapse.

Jhansi, Nagpur and Satara were among the Indian States that were annexed by invoking the Doctrine of Lapse.

Doda Tribes: They are found in India in Garo hills (Meghalaya).

Drain Theory: This term was propounded (advocated) by Dadabhai Naoroji exposing the exploitive nature of the British rule in India resulting in the poverty of the Indians. It stated that the resources of the country were being utilised in the interest of Britain.

Sir Syed Ahmad Khan, however, did not believe in the drain theory.

Dupleix: was the first European to initiate the policy of taking part in the quarrels of Indian princes with a view to acquiring territories.

Durgesh Nandini: was a famous historical novel written by Bankim Chander Chatterjee during the latter half of the nineteenth century.

Dwarasamudra: was the capital of Hoysalas.

Dyarchy: Under the Government of India Act, 1919, the system of Dyarchy (double government) was introduced under which provincial governments were given more powers. Some subjects, such as finance and law and order were called ‘reserved’ subjects and remained under the direct control of the Governor; others such as education, public health, and local self-government, were called ‘transferred’ subjects and were to be controlled by ministers responsible to the legislatures


East India Company: The (English) East India Company was established in 1600 to trade with India . In 1615, the Company built its first factory at Surat with the permission of Jehangir, secured through Sir Thomas Roe, the ambassador to James I.

The (English) East India Company was brought under the supervision of the British Parliament through Pitt’s India Act , 1784.

East India Company, End of: The most important sequel to the great revolt of 1857 was the end of the East India Company’s rule in India. On Nov 1, 1858, Queen Victoria issued a proclamation announcing that the Government of India had been taken over directly by the Crown.

The proclamation replaced the Court of Directors by a Secretary of State. The Governor-General who was henceforth to be a representative of the Crown was redesignated as the Viceroy.

Eka Movement of Avadh: stood for non-payment of rent to the government.

Elephanta Caves: Elephanta is an island off Mumbai coast famous for rock-cut cave temples. 28 new caves have been discovered here recently.

Ellora: is famous for rock-cut temple of Kailasa built by the Rashtrakutas. (Also see ‘Kailasa temple’).

Elphinstone: was the British General who defeated Peshwa Baji Rao- II.


Fa-hien: was a Chinese pilgrim who visited India during the reign of Chandragupta Vikramaditya in 405 A.D.

Father of the Nation: Subhash Chandra Bose was the first to address Mahatma Gandhi as “Father of the Nation” in his speech at Rangoon (Yangon).

Fatuhat-i-Firozshahi: was written by Firuz Shah.

Feroze Tughlak: He charged only those taxes which had the sanction of Islamic laws except Irrigation tax. ‘Hauz Khas’ was built by him.

Firdausi: was a Persian poet who wrote Shahnama.

Firoz Tughlak: was the first ruler to organise Haj pilgrimage at the expense of the State.

First Congress session: was held at Bombay in 1885 (28th December) under the presidentship of W.C. Bonnerji.

First Congress Split: took place in 1907 at Surat.

First cotton mill in India: had been started in Bombay in 1850.

First Governor-General of India: was appointed in 1774.

First Jute Mill in India: was started in 1855 by George Acland, a Scott.

First Metal Used by Man: Copper.

First Muslim invaders of India: Arabs were the first Muslim invaders of India.

First Muslim woman to rule Delhi: The first and the only Muslim woman ever to rule from the throne of Delhi was Razia Begum (or Razia Sultan).

First Newspaper in India: was the Bengal Gazette started by James A. Hickey, which appeared in 1780 and was suppressed by Warren Hastings two years later.

First newspaper in India: Bombay Samachar , the first newspaper started in Bombay, was a venture of the Parsees.

First Opposition Leader in Rajya Sabha: Kamlapati Tripathy.

First railway line in India: The first 21 miles of railway line was laid in the year 1853.

First to establish trade with India: Portuguese were the first Westerners to establish trade links with India (after the Arab monopoly of Indian trade).

First to issue gold coins in India: Mauryas.

First to set up dept. of Agriculture: Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq was the first to set up a department of agriculture in India.

First woman President of the Indian National Congress: Annie Besant (in 1917).

Forward Bloc: was a political party organised by Subhash Chandra Bose after he left the Congress.

Francisco-de-Almeida: was the first Governor of the Portuguese possessions in India.

Frazer Commission: It is connected with Police Administration.

Freedom Movement & Events in Sequence: Morley-Minto Reforms (1909); Khilafat Movement (1919); Non-cooperation Movement (1920); Boycott of Simon Commission (1927); Lahore Congress (1929); Dandi March and Civil Disobedience Movement (1930); Quit India Movement (1942); Naval Mutiny (1946); Indian Independence Act (1947).


Gahadavalas (Gaharwars) of Kanauj: They succeeded Pratihara dynasty of Kanauj which came to an end after Mahmud Ghazni’s invasion in 1018 A.D. The Gahadavalas, who were of indigenous origin, were succeeded by Chandels.

Gandhara Art: Greeco-Roman influence in Indian art is found here. The Gandhara sculptures invariably used green schist as the medium.

The Gandhara Art was greatly influenced by Greeks. The theme of the Gandhara art is Indian but its style Greek. The Gandhara School of Art was also known as Indo-Greek Art. It flourished during the time of the Kushans.

Gandharva: is the ‘marriage of desiring woman with a desiring man’. This is the romantic type of a union, springing from affection and love, and may be accomplished without any nuptial rites.

Gandhi, Mahatma: (1869-1948) was the greatest Indian after Buddha; India achieved independence mainly through his efforts. He entered politics with Champaran campaign to redress grievances of cultivators oppressed by indigo planters of Bihar. (Those who joined him during the Champaran struggle included Rajendra Prasad and Anugraha Narayan Sinha).

He worked for peasants of Kheda in Gujarat who were finding difficulties in paying the rents owing to failure of crops.

In 1917-18, Gandhiji launched the struggle in Ahmedabad which involved industrial workers. He gave a call for Satyagraha against the Rowlatt Act on April 6, 1919 and took command of the nationalist movement for the first time.

Mahatma Gandhi is associated with many movements during the struggle for independence viz., Non-cooperation movement (1920); Salt Satyagraha (Dandi March) and Civil Disobedience movement (1930); Quit India movement (1942) for which Gandhiji raised the slogan: “Do or Die” (Either free India or die in the attempt).

In a sense, Gopal Krishan Gokhale was his political guru. He took inspiration from Ralph Emerson who said “That government is best which governs the least”.

His private secretary was Mahadev Desai. Mahatma Gandhi had suggested winding up of Indian National Congress after India attained independence. Gandhiji was assassinated on January 30, 1948 while attending a prayer meeting.

Gandhi-Irwin Pact: was signed on March 5, 1931. In terms of the Pact, the civil disobedience movement was withdrawn and Gandhiji agreed to attend the second Round-Table Conference (7th September to 1st December, 1931).

Ganesh Festival: It was popularised by B. G. Tilak during India’s freedom struggle.

Gangesh: was the founder of the school of Navya-Nyaya.

Gautamiputra Satakarni: was the great king of Satavahana dynasty.

Gayatri Mantra: is contained in Rig Veda.

Ghadar Party: was formed by Lala Hardayal.

Ghatotkachh: in Mahabharat was the son of Bhim.

Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq: For the first time Bengal became a part of his empire.

Goa: was a portuguese possession in India (colonised first by them). It was liberated by the Indian forces in 1961.

Gobind Singh, Guru: was founder of the Khalsa and the military brotherhood among the Sikhs. He was the last of the Sikh Gurus. The birth place of Guru Gobind Singh is Patna.

Golconda: is associated with Qutab Shahi.

Gold Coins: Mauryas were the first to issue gold coins in India.

Gotra: The upper caste Hindu family still aspires to be a unit tracing his antecedents through a direct line to a common ancestor, and living today in the small units of the joint family system.

Government of India Act of 1935: According to this Act, India had been divided into 11 procinces.

Government of India Act, 1935: A prominent feature of this Act was the ‘Separatist’ system of representation by various religious communities and other groups.
It introduced Provincial Autonomy.

Grama: was a term used in the Vedic society. A group of related families living homogeneously in a given locality was known as a kula or ‘flock’, and was ruled over by Kulapati who exercised wide powers. A group of kulas formed a grama (also called a vis or settlement) presided over by a gramani or vispati.

Great Bath: It has been found as an important remain of excavations conducted at Mohenjo-daro.

Grihya-sutras and Dharma-sutras: While grihya-sutras have domestic importance, the dharma-sutras cover the wider relations of man and his fellows, and man and the state.

They treat of the rules of caste, and of man in his social, economic and religious relationships. Primarily, they are rules of practical life, including the civil and religious laws that regulate Hindu society.

Grivraja: was the capital of Maghda kingdom.

Gulbadan Begam: She was Babur’s daughter. She wrote Humayun-nama, a historical account during the Mughal period in which she refers incidently to the low prices prevailing in Hindustan; for example, at Amarkot, the birth-place of Akbar, the price of four goats was one rupee.

Gunadhya: author of Brihatkatha, ‘Great Story’, a famous collection of tales, written in Paisachi dialect and regarded as one of the major classics of Indian literature.

Gupta Age: The Gupta Age in Indian history (reckoned from 320 A.D.) was the classical period of Sanskrit literature and the personalities who lived during this period were: Kalidasa, Bhartrihari, Dandin, and Bhavabhuti.

Gupta Craftsmen: distinguished themselves by their work in iron and bronze.

Guptas: Land grants to Brahmanas on a large scale was given by the ruling dynasty known as Guptas.

Guru Granth Sahib: was compiled by Guru Arjan Dev.

Gyatri Mantra: is contained in Rig Veda.

Gypsies: The original home of Gypsies was India.


Haldighati, Battle of: (1576) Akbar’s forces headed by Raja Man Singh and Asaf Khan-II defeated Rana Pratap.

Hanumankonda Inscription: mentions the name of poet Kalidasa.

Harappan Culture: Harappan people worshipped Mother Goddess. The standard Harappa seal was a square, usually made of steatite.

The crop which does not appear to have been known to the Harappan culture is Ragi. Horse was probably unknown to the people of Harappan culture. (But it was widely used by the Vedic people).

Hari Hara and Bukka: were founders of the Vijayanagar Empire.

Harshacharita: was written by Banabhatta.

Harshavardhana: (606-648 A.D.) of the Vardhana dynasty was the first of the great rulers following the Hun invasions. He was a great warrior. During his reign, the high officers of the State were not paid in cash but they were assigned ‘jagirs’ in return of their services.

He moved his capital from Thanesar to Kanauj. The famous Chinese pilgrim Hiuen-Tsang visited India (630-44) during his reign.

Banabhatta was the court poet of Harsha and was the source of information about him. He wrote Harshacharita and Kadambri. According to Banabhatta, Harsha was a Hindu-Saiva.

Harsha himslf was a poet and dramatist. The three Sanskrit dramas attributed to him are: Ratnavali, Priyadarsika, and Nagananda.

He was defeated by Pulakesin-II of the Chalukya dynasty. The last Buddhist empire in India was that of Harshavardhana. Information regarding time of Harsha is contained in the books of Kalhana.

Hasan Gangoo: entitled Zafar Khan was founder of the Bahmani kingdom in Deccan.

Hathi-Gumpha: The Hathi-Gumpha cave inscriptions in Kalinga are famous for detailing military achievements of Kharavela.

Hazur Daftar: was the name for the Peshwa’s Secretariat (or Central Government) at Poona.

Heliodorous Pillar: was set up during the reign of Kanishka-I, near Vidisha in Madhya Pradesh, in honour of Vishnu.

Hemadri: who lived during the thirteenth century (Medieval India), was a legal authority on caste and ritual. He was keeper of the royal records of the Yadava rulers of Devagiri. He wrote a voluminous legal digest entitled Chaturvarga-chintamani.

Hieun-Tsang: was the Chinese pilgrim who visited India (630-44) durng the reign of Harshavardhana.

Hijira (or Hijiri Era): is reckoned from 622 A.D.

Hindu: The word ‘Hindu’ as reference to the people of Hind (India) was first used by the Greeks.

Home Rule League: was formed in 1915 by Mrs Annie Besant. Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak joined the movement in 1916.
In the Lucknow session of the Congress in 1916, the Home Rule Leaguers were able to demonstrate their political strength.

Home Rule Society: popularly called India House, was established in London in 1905 by Shyamji Krishna Varma to promote the cause of Indian independence.

India House was a centre for study, propaganda, training and political action. A monthly journal The Indian Sociologist, was also issued, and fellowships were also awarded.

The centre attracted many young men residing at different universities in England two of whom namely, Har Dayal and Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, were prominent. Another youth member of the centre was Madan Lal Dhingra.

Hoysalas: Vishnuvardhana established a kingdom for Hoysala dynasty with capital at Doarasamudra (Halebid) near Mysore during the 12th century. It was once the most powerful dynasty in the Deccan.

Their short-lived dominion was shattered in 1310 by the attack of Malik Kafur and Khawja Haji, the generals of Alaudin Khilji, who ravaged the kingdom and sacked the capital.

Humayun: was defeated in the battle of Chausa because his brothers did not help him.

Hydaspes, Battle of: Alexander defeated Porus in 326 B.C. at the battle of Hydespes.

Hyderabad State: ceased to exist on November 1, 1956.


I.N.A.: The I.N.A. (Indian National Army) was organised by Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose at Singapore.

Ibadat Khana: is a building at Fatehpur Sikri where Akbar held discussions on religious matters.

Ibn-Batuta: was a great scholar and traveller from South Africa who came to India in 1333 A.D. during the reign of Mohammd Tughlaq and wrote about him. He described Mohammad Tughlak as the ‘wonder of the age’. He wrote that during the transfer of capital, Mohd-bin-Tughlak dragged even blind and crippled to Daulatabad. He spent 8 years in India on his way to China.

Idol worship in India: can be traced to the period of Pre-Aryan.

Ilbert Bill Controversy: happened during the Viceroyalty of Lord Rippon.

Iltumish: was the first Muslim ruler who made Delhi as his capital in place of Lahore. He introduced, for the first time, a sound administrative system in Delhi Sultanate

Imperial Capital: The British shifted the imperial capital from Calcutta to Delhi in 1911.

Independence of India League: was founded by the radical wing of the Congress Party in opposition to the Home Rule Movement.

India State Peoples Conference: was formed in 1927.

Indian Association: was founded in 1878 by Surindra Nath Banerjea, joined by his friends Anand Mohan Bose (a barrister), Sibunath Sastri (a Brahmo leader), and Krishna Mohan Banerji.

Indian Councils Act, 1861: By this Act, the ‘portfolio’ system was introduced whereby members were placed in charge of specific departments instead of sitting as a board of consultants to discuss each question on its merits.

Indian Independence League: was organised by Rash Behari Bose, an old revolutionary, at a conference held at Bangkok in June 1942.

Indian Mutiny (Revolution) 1857: or the first War of Indian Independence started from Meerut on May 16, 1857. Its main cause was supply of greased cartriges to Indian soldiers which contained fat of cows and pigs.
The Sikhs supported the British in this revolt.

Indian National Congress: was founded on 28th December, 1885 by A.O. Hume. Its first session was held at Bombay under Presidentship of W.C. Bonnerji.

A resolution asking for complete independence of India was passed in the Congress session held at Lahore in 1929 under the Presidentship of Jawahar Lal Nehru.

Indian National Trade Union Congress: was founded in 1947. It drew inspiration from Gandhian philosophy and sought to secure redress of grievances by means of negotiation and conciliation without stopagges of work.

Indian Naval Mutiny: It took place in 1946 against the British.

Indian Railways and Postal Services: were started during the period of Lord Dalhousie.

Indica, The: written by Megasthenese, is the historical source of the period of Chandragupta Maurya. It gives a detailed account of the municipal administration of the Mauryas.

The division of society into seven classes is mentioned in this book.

Indigo disturbances in Bengal: took place in 1859 and 1860 immediately after the revolt of 1857 between European indigo planters and the Bengal peasants. The prevailing system often compelled the Bengal peasant to grow indigo against both his will and his interests.

Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts: has been set up in New Delhi as a resource centre and data base for cultural activities.

Individual Civil Disobedience or Individual Satyagraha: The Congress Working Committee decided to start individual civil disobedience on Oct 11, 1940. Vinoba Bhave was the first Satyagrahi who was arrested on Oct 21, followed soon by many more including Nehru and Patel.

Indra: is said to be the most celebrated deity of the Rig-veda. During Rigvedic period Indra was known as God of Thunder.

He belongs to the early Iranian period of the Aryan migration, and his name has been deciphered as ‘In-da-ra’ in a fourteenth century B.C. inscription at Boghaz Koi in Asia Minor.

Indus Valley Civilization: According to carbon-dating process, the Indus Valley Civilization appears to have flourished between 2500 and 1700 B.C. This period is known as pre-historic period. It belongs to the Chalcolithic Age.

The remains of the Indus Valley Civilization were first discovered at Harappa (1921) and Mohenjodaro (1922).

The Indus Valley Civilization was primarily urban.The Indus Valley people established commercial contacts with the Sumerians.

Iron was not known to the people of the Indus Valley Civilization.

The ornaments of the poor people of Indus Valley Civilization were made of copper, shells and bones. The Indus script has not been deciphered so far. The system of governing of Indus Valley Civilization was probably Kingship.

Indus Valley Civilization Script: The script of Indus Valley Civilization is not yet deciphered.

Iqbalnama-i-Jahangiri: official history of the reign of Jehangir.

Iqta: It was the land-grant system adopted by Ala-ud-din Khilji to grant his officers as reward for services rendered.
Qutabuddin Aibak was assigned the first iqta in India by Mohd of Ghor.

Iron: This metal was discovered during the Mauryan period which, according to D.D. Kausambi and R.S. Sharma, provided technological base for material advancement.

Iron, first used in India: Iron was first used in India around 1500 B.C..


Jagat Seths: were the most important among the bankers of Bengal in the eighteenth century before overthrow of Mir Qasim by the English.

Jahangir: He allowed the English to begin their trade at Surat through a farman granted to Sir Thomas Roe.

Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan: was the slogan given by Lal Bahadur Shastri during Indo-Pak war of 1965.

Jainism: was founded by Mahavir. He was born in Vaishali. According to Jainism “strict moral conduct and virtuous life is the way to “salvation”. Tri-ratna or the Three jewels in Jainism are (1) right intentions, (2) right knowledge and (3) right conduct an absolutely stainless life.

Jainism had the patronage of Kharavela, the ruler of Kalinga who reigned during the 1st Century B.C.

Jaipal: Raja of Bhatinda, was defeated for the first time by Mahmud of Ghazni.

Jaipur: called the ‘Pink City’ is capital of Rajasthan. It was founded by Sawai Jai Singh.

Jajmani System in rural India: The reasons for the break of Jajmani system in rural India are (1) monetization of economy and commercialisation of agriculture, and (2) increase of caste consciousness among the artisans and the peasants.

Jallianwala Bagh Massacre: It occurred at Amritsar on April 13, 1919 during the Viceroyalty of Lord Chelmsford.
Rabindranath Tagore renounced the Knighthood as a protest against this tragedy.

Jana: A number of grama formed the jana or tribe whose leader was janapati.

Jatakas: These stories were written in Pali language.

Jatin Das: was a well-known Indian revolutionary who died in jail while on hunger strike.

Jazia: was abolished by Akbar.

Jehangir: Painting reached its climax during the reign of Jehangir.

Jija Bai: was the name of Shivaji’s mother.

Jimutavahana: was a famous jurist of medieval India (fifteenth century). His work Dayabhaga is a commentary on the srutis, specially on Manu. It was once part of a great compilation called the Dharma-Ratna. This commentary represents the source of the Gauriya school of Bengal and Assam.

Jina: In Jainism, the supreme souls whose lives should be followed as example to the best are referred to as Jina.

Jital: was a copper coin of the Sultanate period of India.

Johar: Johar culture was developed by the Rajputs.

John Morley: the radical thinker, whom the Labour Party in Britain considered a suitable spokesman of their opinions, was appointed the Secretary of State for India in 1906.

Justin: His accounts are useful for reconstructing the history of Chandragupta Maurya.


Kabir: was disciple of Ramananda. His teaching include Ram and Rahim.

Kailasa Temple at Ellora: The rock-cut Kailasa temple at Ellora is a splendid achievement of art, and considering the technical skill and labour involved, is unequalled in the history of the world. It is a marvellous specimen of the Dravidian style. It was constructed during the reign of Krishna-I, in the latter half of the eighth century A.D.
The caves and rock-cut temples at Ellora are Hindu, Buddhist and Jain.

Kaiser-i-Hind: Queen Victoria was crowned with Kaiser-i-Hind in the Delhi Durbar during the Viceroyalty of Lord Lytton.

Kalachuri Era: counted from A.D. 248, it was mostly current in Central India. Their capital was Tripuri near Jabalpur. Kalchuris were the feudatries of the Pratiharas but soon acquired independence.

Kalhana: was poet historian of Kashmir. He lived in the 11th century A.D. He wrote Rajatarangini, his masterpiece, considered as the only Sanskrit work which can lay any claim to being regarded as history.
The material for the history of Kashmir is to be found in Kalhana’s Rajatarangini.

Kali Era: is reckoned from 3102 B.C.

Kalibangan: in Rajasthan where recent excavations brought to light the varied achievements of Indus Valley Civilisation town planning and use of burnt bricks.

Kalidas: was a great Sanskrit poet who flourished in the court of Chandragupta Vikramaditya. He wrote Shakuntla.

Kalinga : was captured in 261 B.C.

Kalinga Rock-edict: This inscription proves Chandragupta’s sway over western India.

Kalpa: The whole body of scriptures dealing with the religious ceremonial and practice of Hinduism (Ritual Canon) is referred to by the term Kalpa, ‘usage’. It is regarded as one of the Vedangas or auxiliary Vedic studies.

Kalpasutra Paintings: were well-known during the period from the thiteenth to sixteenth centuries in Western India.

Kanchipuram (Conjeevaram): (in Tamil Nadu) was capital of the Pallavas. Called the ‘golden city’, it was once a great Buddhist stronghold, reportedly visited by Buddha himself. It was the site of several Ashokan stupas, now vanished.

Kandariya Mahadeo Temple: is in Khajuraho (Madhya Pradesh).

Kanishka: was the third and the greatest king of K ushan dynasty (120 A.D. to 162 A.D.). He was a great conqueror, became a patron of Buddhism and was the only ruler of India who had his territory even in Central Asia beyond the Pamirs. He was a great patron of art and learning. Charaka and Nagarjuna were active during his reign.

Saka Era started during his reign. There was not a single revolt during his reign. The headless statue of Kanishka, an important relic of his period, was found in Mathura.

Karnataka war: was fought between Haider Ali and Marathas.

Karshapana: was the most commonly used coin in the Chola kingdom.

Kashmir: Before coming of the Muslims, Kashmir was known to be a centre of Shaivism.

Khajuraho Temples: were built by Chandellas.

Khajurao Temples: are located in Madhya Pradesh. These were built by kings of Chalukya dynasty.

Kharavela: was king of Kalinga. His best-known epigraphic inscriptions are at Hathi-Gumpha cave in Kalinga.

Kharoshthi: Formerly called Indo-Bactrian, was one of the many alien scripts used in India in early centuries. It was written from right to left. It was derived from a form of writing brought by merchants from the Mediterranean. It was manifestly Semitic in origin.

Khilafat Movement: was a mass movement of the Muslims launched in 1920 by the two brothers, Muhammad Ali and Shaukat Ali against Britain for dismemberment of Turkish empire after world war I, offending the religious and historical sentiments of the Muslims.

The first Khilafat conference was held at Delhi on Nov 23, 1919. At Calcutta on Feb 20, 1920, the conference under Abdul Kalam Azad’s chairmanship fixed a Khilafat Day and adopted a resolution in favour of the non-cooperation movement.

The Congress, in its special session held at Calcutta on Sept 8, 1920, gave its approval to the non-cooperation movement.

The Khilafat Committee of 1920 held at Allahabad asked Gandhiji to lead the non-cooperation movement.
Mohammad Ali Jinnah, however, opposed Mahatma Gandhi’s association with the Khilafat Movement.

Khiraj: was the land tax imposed by Mohd-bin-Qasim after the Arab occupation of Sind.

Khonds: were primitive tribes living in Orissa.

Khusrau, Amir: famous Indian literary man and poet in the court of Alauddin Khilji. He wrote in Persian as well as in Hindi. He died in 1325, and is sometimes reckoned as a writer of Urdu. He is said to have witnessed the reigns of eight Delhi Sultans.

Kila-i-Kuhna Mosque: is a lofty mosque inside Purana Qila in Delhi constructed by Sher Shah which is considered to be a good example of Indo-Islamic architecture.

Komagata Maru: was the name of a Japanese steemship carrying about three hundred Indians, mostly Sikhs, to enter British Columbia in Western Canada.

Konark Temple: dedicated to Surya or Sun-god, was built between 1250-1278 A.D. in the area around the mouth of the river Mahanadi.

Kosa: or the treasury was one of the constituent elements of the state in ancient India, and was fed by the ‘stream of taxation’.

Krishna I: was Rashtrakuta king (c.A.D. 760) who got constructed the famous Rock-cut Shiva temple at Ellora one of the most marvellous works of human labour..

Krishnadevaraya: was the most famous Raja of Vijayanagar kingdom, the last great Hindu ruler of Southern India (1509-29). He belonged to the Tulva dynasty.

Kula: In ancient India, a group of related families or a community living homogenously in a given locality was known as Kula.

Kushanas: The original home of the Kushanas was in Chinese Turkistan. Kushans came from Bactria. They extended their conquests over Kashmir and north-west India and ruled these territories for more than 100 years.

Kusinara (or Kusinagara): is the place where Gautam Buddha died.


Lahore: The capital of the Kingdom of Maharaja Ranjit Singh was Lahore.

Lambadies: are concentrated in Karnataka.

Land Revenue: was the principal source of State income during the period of Mughal India.

Lapis Lazuli: It is a semi-precious blue gem stone valued for its deep blue colour. The source of lapis lazuli for the people of Harappan culture was Afghanistan.

Blue colour used in the paintings of Ajanta was obtained from imported lapis lazuli.

Local Self-Government: was introduced in India by Lord Rippon.

Lodhi Dynasty: was founded by Bahlol Lodhi in 1451.

Lodhi Sultans: were Afghans.

Lokahitawadi: was the first reformer in Maharashtra to challenge the old authorities and the old traditions.

Lomasa Rishi Cave: is one of the small rock-cut caves in Barabar hills near Gaya. It was dug during Mauryan period. It has a ribbed horseshoe arch in in close imitation of a wooden model, very much like the entrance to the Toda hut. The cave lies unfinished or probably discontinued due to a flaw in the rock.

Lord Canning: was the Governor-General of India when the 1857 revolt broke out.

Lord Macaulay: who had joined the British Council as law member in 1834, is associated with the introduction of English education in India

Lothal: in Gujarat where excavations have brought to light the period of Indus Valley times town planning, use of burnt bricks, interlinked drainage system.

(This site of the Indus Valley Civilization situated on the sea-plain of former Saurashtra, 720 km south-east of Mohenjodaro, is located in India).

The excavation made here represent the Harappan culture. The discovery of a dockyard here measuring 710 feet by 125 feet (found blocked) proves Indian maritime trade with Mesopotamia and other countries.

It is the best example of maritime activity during the Harappan period.

Lucknow Pact (1916): The war between Turkey and Britain aroused anti-British feelings among Muslims and paved the way for co-operation with the Congress.

Both Congress and the Muslim League, in their session at Lucknow in 1916, concluded the famous agreement known as the Lucknow Pact which included the recognition of separate electorates.

In the Lucknow session of the Congress, the Home Rule Leagures were able to demonstrate their political strength.


Macaulay’s Minutes: The foundation of modern educational system in India was laid by ‘Macaulay’s Minutes’ of 1835.

Madurai: was the capital of the kingdom of Pandyas.

Maganlal Gandhi: On his suggestion, Mahatma Gandhi adopted the word “Satyagraha” for his struggle in South Africa.

Maghadan Empire: The rise of the Magadhan Empire can be traced back to the Sunga dynasty (185-73B.C.) Pushyamitra Sunga was founder of this dynasty. Their dominions included Magadha and certain neighboring provinces, extending southwards as far as the Narbada..

Mahabharat: was originally known as Jayahita.

Mahadev Govind Ranade: was a great social and religious reformer who worked unceasingly for the eradication of child marriage and purdah system. To spread his message on a national scale, he inaugurated Indian National Social Conference.

Mahanavami: was the most famous State festival of the Vijayanagar empire.

Mahatarfa and Jakat: In the administrative system of Marathas, custom duties known as Mahatarfa and Jakat were imposed.

Mahavira: was founder of Jainism. He was the twenty-forth and the last of Jain Tirthankaras. He was born at Vaisali, the capital of Videha (modern Bihar). He was a Kashtriya.

Mahavira attained “Kaivalya” at the age of 42. Mahavira did not believe in the worship of idols. He died aged 72 at Pavapuri in the Patna district. Mahavira was far more strict than Buddha in the doctrine of “Non-injury to living creatures”.

Mahayana: This Buddhist sect formally came into existence during the reign of Kanishka. Refer Buddhism.

Mahayana: was a form of Buddhism which emerged during the reign of Kanishka.

Mahayana and Hinayana: Refer Buddhism.

Mahendravarman-I: (600-630) was Pallava king known for his architectural skill. He introduced the method pf scooping out entire temples from the solid rock, as at Mamapuram.

Mahmud Ghazni: He started his raids of India from the north-west during 1000-1026 A.D. He attacked India many times, his interest being to plunder India’s wealth.

Maitreya: is supposed to be the fifth Buddha who is yet to come.

Malik Kafur: He was Allauddin Khilji’s military general who led two campaigns in south India between 1309 and 1311. In 1310, he attacked Hoysala kingdom and sacked their capital Dorasamudra (or Halebid). He was appointed as Malik Naib or Vice-Regent of the empire by Alauddin.

Mansabdari System: was initiated by Akbar in 1577 (in the nineteenth year of his reign) for the purpose of expanding his army as well as organising the nobility to maintain his hold over his rule. Under this system, every officer of the State was assigned a rank (mansab).

It was an official appointment of rank and profit. The mansab was bound to supply a number of troops for the military service of the State. The mansabdars formed the official nobility of the country.

The Mansabdari System was thus the “army, the peerage, and the civil administration, rolled into one”.
The military system of the Delhi Sultanate was influenced, to some extent, by the Mongol system. .

Manu Smriti: deals with law. (Manu was a Hindu law giver). According to Manu Smriti, a woman after marriage, was required to be under control of her husband.

Maski Rock Edict: This minor Rock-edict is the only edict in which Ashoka refers to himself as the king of Magadha.

Material Culture Theory: deals with iron and agricultural implements.

Mathura School of Art: suggests Buddhism as religion.

Mauryas: were the rulers of Magadha.

Mayamata: was a Saiva sect in ancient India.

Meenakshi Temple: is located in Madurai.

Megasthenes: (306-290 B.C.) was Greek Ambassador at the court of Chandragupta Maurya. He visited India and studied at the Nalanda University. In the account of Megasthenes we come across in detail mention of the municipal administration of the Mauryas. Also refer Indica.

Mehrauli “Iron Pillar” (in Delhi): belonged to the reign of Chandragupta-I.

Mehrauli pillar inscription: belongs to the period of the Guptas.

Mesolithic Age: belongs to the period roughly from 9,000 B.C. to 4.000 B.C. It is called the Stone Age.

Metcalfe, Sir Charles: is known as the ‘Liberator of the Press’. He was British Governor-General of India (1835-36).

Mimamsa: is one of the six orthodox systems of Hindu philosophy, founded by Jaimini (c. 200 B.C.). Mimamsa holds that knowledge alone cannot give salvation. Without right action , or dharma, knowledge is fruitless and true happiness unattainable.

Miniature Painting: reached its climax during the reign of Jahangir.

Mir Jaffar: He deserted Siraj-ud-Dowlah and joined the English under Lord Clive when the Battle of Plassey (1757) was raging with utmost fury.

Mir Jaffer granted an extra allowance called Double Bhatta to the English troops.

Mira Bai: was contemporary of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.

Mitakshara: It is a book on Hindu Law of inheritance written by Vijnanesvara who wrote at the Court of Chalukya king Vikramaditya-VI (1075-1127).

Mohammad- bin-Qasim: was the first Muslim invader of India. The Arab conquest of Sind took place in 712 A.D. under his leadership.

Mohd Shah: was the last Mughal emperor to sit on the Peacock throne.

Mohd-bin-Tughlak: was a Turk. Copper coins were started by him.

Mohenjodaro: is known for discovery of remains of Indus Valley Civilization here in 1922 by R.D. Banerjee.
Mohenjadaro is in the Larkana district of Sind (now in Pakistan). An image of dancing girl was also found here.
(Sir John Marshall, Director General of Archaeology, declared in 1924 that a new civilization had been discovered in the Indus Valley by R.D. Banerjee in 1922).

Mongols: attacked India during the reign of Iltumish.

Monogamy: The practice of Monogamy (the custom or condition of marriage to one wife or husband at a time) was in existence during the Rig Vedic period.

Moplah Rebellion: broke out in Malabar in August 1921.

Moplah Rebellion: took place in Malabar in 1921.

Morley-Minto Reforms: were aimed at expansion of the legislature.

Moti Masjid: Shah Jehan built Moti Masjid at Agra Fort and Aurangzeb built another Moti Masjid at Red Fort, Delhi.

Mountbatten Plan: India was partitioned by the Mountbatten Plan of 3rd June, 1947.

Mountbatten, Lord: was Governor-General of India when the country became independent on the 15th August, 1947. He was the last British Viceroy in India (March 1947-August 1947) and the first and the last Englishman to be the Governor General of Free India.

Mughal Dynasty: was finally extinguished with Bahadur Shah-II.

Mughal Empire, Cause of downfall: The fundamental cause for the downfall of the Mughal empire was the religious policy of Aurangzeb according to Dr Satish Chandra.

Mughal India: The principal source of State income in Mughal India was land revenue.

Mughal Paintings: reached its zenith under Jahangir.

Mughal paintings, Portuguese influence on: In Mughal paintings, one notices the adoption of the principle of foreshortening whereby near and distant people and things could be placed in perspective. This is due to the influence of the Portuguese.

Muin-ud-Din Chisti: Sufi saint who is associated with Ajmer. His dargah is also at Ajmer. He maintained that devotional music was one way of coming closer to God.

Muqti: Ala-ud-din had divided his Sultanate into provinces, each under a governor generally termed muqti who was responsible for the administration.

Museums in India: National Museum, New Delhi, the Indian Museum, Calcutta, the Salar Jung Museum, Hyderabad, and the Allahabad Museum, Allahabad.

Salar Jung Museum in Hyderabad, named after Salar Jung-III, Mir yousuf Ali Khan, has a very rare and important collection of about 40,000 art objects. It is known the world over as the largest single collection of art objects from different countries.

Indian Museum in Calcutta undertakes acquisition of objects of art and archaeology and carries out educational and cultural activities.

The Allahabad Museum has got a rich collection of early scruptures, terracota seals and modern painting.

Muslim League: was founded in 1906 in Dacca (Dhaka) by a resolution proposed by Nawab Salimullah.
The Muslim League adopted the resolution for creation of Pakistan in 1940.

Mysore War, Second: came to an end by the treaty of Mangalore.


Nadir Shah: invaded India in 1739.

Nagananda: or ‘Serpent’s Bliss’ a Sanskrit play attributed to king Harsha Vardhana concerns the conversion of a Buddhist priest, of Garuda the serpent-eating bird, to the principles of ahimsa or non-injury.

Nagarjuna: was the philosopher-scientist and a great figure of the court of Kanishka whom Hieun-Tsang called “one of the four lights of the world” and who also enunciated the theory of Relativity in his great work called Madhyamika Sutra. He is rightly called the Indian Einstein.

Naidu, Sarojini: She was a gifted Indian poetess of the English language, commonly known as the Nightingale of India. She was the second woman President of the Indian National Congress in 1925 and the first woman Governor of an Indian State (Governor of U.P.) after independence.

(The first woman President of the Indian National Congress was Annie Besant in 1917).

Nalanda University: In ancient India, this University was a great centre for the study of Mahayana Buddhism.

Namdev: hailed from the State of Maharashtra.

Nanak, Guru: started the religion Sikhism. He is patronised even by Muslims.

Nanda dynasty: was ruling in India at the time of Alexander’s invasion.
The last king of the Nanda dynasty was Dhana Nanda.

Naoroji, Dadabhai: popularly known as the “Grand Old Man” of India was a great nationalist. He was also President of the Indian National Congress. He was earlier elected to the British Parliament.

He propounded the theory of “Economic Drain” of India during the British Rule. (He estimated Indian national income and criticized the constant drain of wealth from India to England.)

Narasimhavarman-I: (630-660) son of Mehendravarman-I , was the greatest of the Pallava kings. He defeated and slew the redoubtable Chalukya, Pulakesin-II in 640 A.D.He was patron of the Sasnkrit poet Dandin. Hieun-Tsang, the Chinese traveller, visited the kingdom during his reign and was impressed by the splendour of Kanchipuram (capital of Pallavas).

Nasik inscription: The achievements of Gautamilputra Satakarni are detailed in Nasik inscription. Also refer Pulumayi, Sri.

Nastaliq: was a Persian script used in medieval India.

Nataraja bronze image: is a fine example of Chola art, considered to be the world’s greatest iconographical creations made by sthapatis (architects) of south India.

National Conference: The first session of the National Conference was held in 1883 at Calcutta.

National Movement in India: The international events which influenced the national movement in India before the advent of Mahatma Gandhi were: (1) Italian-Abyssinian War, 1898; (2) Boxer Movement in China; (3) Revolutionary Movement in Ireland; and (4) Victory of Japan in the Russo-Japanese War.

NAUROJ festival in India: Balban introduced the famous Persian festival of Nauroj in India.

Navasahasanka-charit: was written by Padmagupta.

Navya-Nyaya: The founder of school of Navya-Nyaya was Gangesh.

Nehru, Jawahar Lal: (1889-1964) was one of the world’s greatest statesmen who emerged as the first Prime Minister of India when the country became independent in 1947.

In the interim government formed in 1946, he was the Vice-President of the Executive Council.
He is considered to be the maker of modern India.

Neolithic Age: belongs to the period between 4,000 B.C. and 1,000 B.C. The people of this age used tools and implements of polished stone. The cutting tools were used to various uses by the people of this Age.

Nevali Cori Valley: is in Turkey. The recent excavations here have revealed remarkable influence of advanced Vedic culture with traces of agrarian settlements. The site is dated back to 7000 B.C.

Nisha: The term nisha which meant an ornament in the Vedic period was used in later times to denote a coin (a metal piece of definite weight).

Nizam-ul-Mulk Asaf Jah: is known for his introduction of a new calendar, a new system of coinage and new scales of weights and measures.

Non-cooperation Movement: was launched by Mahatma Gandhi in 1920 against the British for attainment of Swaraj. The movement received support from large number of Muslims also.

Already, there was widespread unrest among industrial workers Bombay Mill strike affected more than one lakh twenty-five thousand workers at the beginning of 1919 and there were about 200 strikes during the first six months of 1920.

Mahatma Gandhi surrendered the title of “Rt. Honourable” given to him by the British Government. The Movement led to the Congress becoming a mass movement for the first time and removed fear of the British ‘might’ from the minds of the people.

Non-cooperation Movement was, however, withdrawn because of violence at Chauri-Chaura. Non-cooperation Movement Resolution was passed in the Calcutta session of the Indian National Congress in September 1920.

Nur Jahan: originally known as Mihr-ul-nisa, whom Jahangir married in May 1611, was formerly wife of Sher Afghan.


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Padmavat: is the famous poem describing the story of queen Padmini, written by Malik Muhammad Jayasi. Recently one movie made on Padmavat.

Paisacha: called after the savage Pisacha tribe, in the Hindu tradition, was form of marriage by rape, where the girl was carried off by force, or under false pretext against her will.

Palaeolithic Age: is called the old stone age the period between 2,000 B.C. and 10,000 B.C. It is also called the Ice Age.

Pali: Buddha preached in Pali language.

Panch Mahal: was built by Akbar at Fatehpur Sikri. It is noted for its various types of pillars.

Panchala: In ancient times, Panchala was called maha-janapada. Early social organisation was tribal, and in course of time the territory in which a group of related tribes settled came to be known as janapada, which term was later used to connote a nation. Mahajanapada meant larger aggregates of such tribal nations.

Panchsheel: The Sino-Indian agreement of 1954 known as ‘Panchsheel’ enshrined peaceful co-existence, mutual respect for territorial integrity, and mutual non-interference in each other’s internal affairs.
But the principle of “mutual help in times of need” was not enshrined in the agreement.

Pandyas: was a kingdom in the south India in the 9th century. Their capital was Madurai. During the Sangam period, the Tamil poets and scholars were patronised by the Pandyas.

Panini: was the greatest of the Sanskrit grammarians.

Paramaras: This dynasty was not involved among the ‘tripartite struggle’ between Palas, Pratiharas and Rashtrakutas,

Parantaka-I: was the first important ruler of the Chola dynasty in 907 A.D. He ruled for almost half a century. He captured Madurai, capital of Pandyas.

Parsis: first came into India at Diu. Their sacred book is Torah.

Pasupati: The Hindu deity with three heads and horns, surrounded by animals, represented on a seal from Mohenjo-daro is referred to as Pasupati. It is also referred to as ‘a prototype of the historic Siva’.
The people of Indus Valley Civilization worshipped Pasupati.

Patel, Vallabhbhai: (1875-1950) was a great and vigorous Congress leader and Deputy Prime Minister of India after independence in 1947 well known as an iron man.

He was made Home Minister when Jawahar Lal Nehru formed the Interim Government in 1946. He was not a member of the Drafting Committee of the Indian Constitution. Soon after independence in August 1947, he played a vital role in the integration of Princely States in India.

He is also known as the ‘Bismarck of India’. The Sarabandi (no-tax) campaign of 1922 was led by him.

Patriot of Patriots: Subhash Chandra Bose was described by Mahatma Gandhi as “patriot of patriots”.

Peacock Throne: originally belonged to Shah Jahan. It now adores crown of the British Queen.

Permanent Settlement: was introduced by Lord Cornwallis in 1793 in Bengal and Bihar on the suggestion of John Shore. It placed the Indian Revenue System on a scientific basis.

Under the system of Permanent Settlement during the British rule, Zamindars collected and paid land revenue to the government.

Persian Prose and Poetry: reached a climax under the reign of Akbar.

Peshwas: under the Maratha Empire had their capital at Pune (Poona). Refer Hazur Daftar.The first Peshwa ruler was Baji Rao.

Physiocrats: At the time of the French Revolution in 1789, the Economists were known as ‘Physiocrats’.

Pitt’s India Act, 1784: Through this Act, the English East India Company was brought under the supervision of the British Parliament.

Pollution concept: emerged clearly in the age of Dharma Shastras.

Polyandry (women having several husbands): As Rig Veda points out, polyandry was NOT common in the Vedic period.

Poona Pact: was signed in 1932 between various groups and parties among the Hindus led by Mahatma Gandhi and Dr B.R. Ambedkar on behalf of the Harijans repudiating the Communal Award given by the British Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald which conceded separate electorates on communal basis.

Mahatma Gandhi had staked his life to get the Award annulled and went on a fast unto death.

Portrait-bearing coins: became popular under the Kushans.

Portuguese settlements in India: The circumstances favourable for the Portuguese settlements in India in the beginning were: (1) they took advantage of the jealousy among the small princes on the Malabar coast; (2) they found that there was no State worth the name which could make sustained efforts to prevent their establishment; and (3) their warships were more formidable than any ships they met in Indian waters.

Prajapati: In the later Vedic pantheon, the supreme position was held by a Prajapati.

Prajapatya: a vaguely defined form of marriage, whose chief feature appears to be that its conditions were fixed and there was no dowry.

Prakrit: This language received royal patronage during the reign of Satavahanas.

Pratihara (Parihar): This dynasty was founded in 725 A.D. by Nagabhata of the Gurjara sect.

Prayag Prasasti: written by Harisen, is the main source of the conquests of Samudragupta.

Prayaga: was the ancient name of modern Allahabad. Prayaga was conquered by Ghori kings in 1194 A.D. Its name was changed to Allahabad by the Mughals.

Prithviraj Raso: written in Braj Bhasha by Chand Bardai is the story of the prowess and romance of Prithviraj Chauhan.

Priyadarsi: is the name by which Ashoka is generally referred to in his inscripions.

Priyadarsika: a Sanskrit drama by king Harsha Vardhana is a ‘harem tragedy’.

Provincial Autonomy: was introduced in India during the reign of Lord Linlithgo.

Pulakesan-II: was the most famous king of the Chalukya dynasty who ascended the throne in 611 A.D.
Aihole inscription gives information about him.

Pulumayi, Sri: His best-known epigraphic inscriptions are at Nashik.

Punch-marked Silver Coins: The earliest evidence of silver in India is found in punch-marked silver coins found in Bihar.

Puranas: are 18 in number.

Purandaradasa: was the earliest and the most celebrated of the Kanarese classical singers. He was once the favourite of the Vijayanagar court. He systematized Karnataka music in his masterly compositions.

Pushyamitra: was the famous ruler and founder of the Sunga dynasty (185-73 B.C.). The last Mauryan ruler was overthrown by him. He thus became the first ruler of the Sunga dynasty which succeeded the Mauryans.

The great Stupa at Sanchi and the railings which enclose it belong to the Sunga period.


Quit India Movement: was launched by Mahatma Gandhi on August 8, 1942 urging the British to transfer power to Indians and quit the country. His slogan was ‘Do or die’.

Qutab-ud-din Aibak: was founder of the Slave dynasty of India (1206-90). He was slave of Mu’iz-ud-din Muhammad Ghuri.

The famous Qutab Minar at Delhi was begun by him (and completed by Iltumish).


Radcliffe, Sir Cyril: He was responsible for demarcating the boundary between India and Pakistan in 1947.
Sir Radcliffe was appointed chairman of the two commissions set up by the British Government to effect partition of Punjab and Bengal after announcement of the famous declaration by Lord Mountbatten on June 3, 1947, laying “the method by which power will be transferred from British to Indian hands”.

Rajaraja-I Chola: was a great king of the Chola dynasty in the south of India.
During his reign, the Arabs established trade centres on the west coast of India and had the support of the rulers of Kerala.

He was the first Indian ruler who conducted a naval campaign on important Arab trade centres to check their monopoly in trade with India.

Rajasekhara: (c. 920) is author of the play Karpura-manjari.

Rajasuya: This Vedic sacrifice was a royal consecration ceremony.

Rajatarangini: by Kalhana deals with the history of Kashmir. Also refer Kalhana.

Rajendra Prasad: He was President of the Constituent Assembly of India (1946-49) and the first President of the Indian Republic (1950-62).

Rajendra-I: was the Chola king who fought against the Sailendra king of Srivijaya (in Sumatra) and defeated him.

Rajgarh: is the town where Shivaji crowned himself in 1614.

Rajsekhar: was the court-poet of Mahendrapal.

Rajukas: They were responsible for public welfare in Mauryan administration.

Rakshasa: according to Hindu tradition, was the heroic marriage, where a woman carried off as a prize of war, was married without the consent of her father, usually by the captor.

Raktika: was the basic weight (measure) in ancient India.

Ramakrishna Mission: was founded by Swami Vivekanand.

Ramanuja: was the celebrated Vaishnava philosopher and teacher, who converted the Hoysala king and resided at Srirangam near Trichinopoly during the reign of Ahirajendra Chola.

He is regarded as the leading opponent of the views of Sankaracharya.

Ramayana: was written by the Hindu sage Valmiki.

Rana Sanga: belonged to Rajput group.

Ranjit Singh, Maharaja: He united all the Sikhs and founded a kingdom in the Punjab, with Lahore as its capital.

Rashtrakutas: During the early medieval period, they were a party to the tripartite struggle for power with Pratiharas and Palas. In 753 A.D., they brought to an end the first Chaulakya dynasty. Refer Dharmapala.

Rath Temple: was built by Narasimhavarman-II (Pallav).

Rathas at Mahabalipuram: are monolithic structures. These are five in number.

Ratnakara: denoted the Arabiasn Sea in ancient Indian historical geography.

Ratnavali: or ‘Pearl Necklace’ is a Sanskrit drama attributed to king Harsha Vardhana & endash;a story of the love of king Udyana of Vatsa for his queen’s attendant, who ultimately turns out to be Ratnavali, princess of Ceylon.

Ratnavali: was written by Harsha.

Ravi Dass: belonged to Shudra caste.

Razia: She was the only woman among the Muslim rulers who ever sat on the throne of Delhi and finally became the victim of a conspiracy in 1240 and was assassinated near Kaithal.

Red Shirts: Khudai Khidmatgars of the North-West Frontier Province in pre-partition days were popularly known as Red Shirts. Their leader was Khan Abdul Ghafar Khan.

Redcliffe Line: demarcates boundaries between India and Pakistan.

Regulating Act, 1773: was the first legislative interference by the British Parliament in the affairs of India.

Rig Veda: is the oldest and the most important of the four Vedas. It is collection of old legends, chants and hymns, some of them of great beauty. Gayatri mantra is contained in it.

Rig Veda period: The people of Rig Veda period believed in rituals and sacrifices.

Rippon, Lord: is associated with Local Self Government.

Rishabha: is supposed to be the mythical founder of Jainism

Rock-cut temples at Mahabalipuram: were built by Pallavas.

Rowlatt Act (1919): Based on the recommendations of Justice Rowlatt, chairman of the committee appointed for curbing seditious movements in India, the Rowlatt Act was passed in 1919 giving unbridled powers to the government to arrest and imprison suspects without trial and crush civil liberties. The Act caused a wave of anger in sections of the people throughout the country.

The Rowlatt Act was popularly known as the Anarchical and Revolutionary Crime Act. In protest, Gandhiji gave a call for Satyagraha against the Act on April 18, 1919.

Roy, M. N.: He was leader of India’ Communists until India’s Independence in 1947. He played a notable role in the world communist movement. After India gained Independence, Roy abandoned communism and became the founder of radical humanism, a mixture of socialist and liberal humanitarian ideas.

Roy, Raja Ram Mohan: was a great Indian reformer. He prominently fought for and got widow re-marriage legalised. He was instrumental in eradicating social evils like Sati, Purdah and child marriage and stood for women’s education.

He was also the founder of Brahmo Samaj.

Royal Asiatic Society: was founded in India during the Governor-Generalship of Warren Hastings.

Rudradaman: His best-known epigraphic inscriptions are at Girnar.

Ryotwari System: was a method of direct settlement with the cultivator, which is associated with the name of Sir Thomas Munro.

The ryotwari system had the advantage of removing the zamindar middleman between the government and the cultivator, who too often acted as a screen behind which oppression could go on undetected.
It was introduced by the British in the Madras and Bombay Presidencies.


Sabarmati Ashram: was established by Mahatma Gandhi on the Sabarmati river near Ahmedabad (Gujarat).

Sabuktigin: was the first Turkish invader of India.

Saddler Commission: relates to University Education.

Sadri-i-Sadur: was the head of the religious endowments and charities during the Mughal period.

Sailendra: king of Srivijaya in Sumatra who was defeated by Rajendra-I, the Chola king.

Saka Era: is reckoned from 78 A.D.

Salt Satyagrah: See “Dandi March”.

Samachar Darpan: was the first vernacular paper published during the regime of Marques of Hastings during the British period.

Samaveda: This Veda is associated with music.

Samiti: General Assembly was called Samiti during the Vedic period.

Samkhya: is the earliest of the orthodox schools of Hindu philosophy, founded by the sage Kapila. It was said to have influenced Gautama Buddha. Both Samkhya and Buddhism are based on the notion of suffering, the rejection of Vedic sacrifice, the renunciation of ascetic extravagance, indifference to theism, and belief in the constant ‘becoming’ of the world.

Samkhya: is the earliest school of Indian philosophy.

Samudragupta: His best-known epigraphic inscriptions are at Allahabad.

Sangam literature: was written in Tamil , mostly in the form of poetry.

Sangola, Treaty of: By this treaty, the power of the Peshwas increased.

Saranjami System: was the important feature of the Maratha revenue system. Regular soldiers were given salaries in cash, though sometimes, the chiefs received revenue grants (Saranjam).

Sardeshmukhi: was an additional levy of 10%, which Shivaji demanded on the basis of his claim as the hereditary Sardeshmukh (chief headman) of Maharashtra.

Sarnath: is associated with Buddha’s first sermon. Refer Buddhism.

Satara: After the fall of Raigarh to the Mughals, it was the next capital of the Maratha government

Satavahanas: were the earliest of the historical dynasties of Andhra.

The founder of the Satavahana dynasty was Simuka who ruled for 23 years from about 235 B.C. to 212 B.C.
They issued the coins of lead and potin. (potin is an old compound of copper, zinc, lead, and tin.). The reign of Satavahanas lasted approximately for 460 years.

Satyashodhak Samaj: Its main programme was upliftment of the backward classes.

Seat of Central Government of India: was shifted from Calcutta to Delhi in 1912.

Secretary of State for India: The office of the Secretary of State for India was created by the Government of India Act, 1858.

Sedition Commission: It was related to the recommendation of Rowlatt Act.

Seleucus (Seleukos Nikator): who assumed power after Alexander as king of Western Asia, was defeated by Chandragupta Maurya, and compelled to retire beyond the frontier.

Servants of India Society: was founded in 1905 by Gopal Krishna Gokhale.

Shah Alam II: was the Mughal emperor at the time of Ahmed Shah Abdali’s invasion of India.

Shah Nawaz Khan: was associated with the Azad Hind Fauj organised by Subhash Chandra Bose in Singapore in 1943.

Shahjahan: His original name was Khurram.

Shahrukh: was Mughal silver coin.

Shaista Khan: was deputed by Aurangzeb to suppress Shivaji.

Shaivism: Refer Kashmir.

Shakas and Parthians: belonged to the Kashatriya caste according to Manu.

Shambhaji: was successor of Shivaji.

Shankaracharya: Born in 788 A.D. was a zealous preacher of Hinduism who uprooted Buddhism and Jainism from India. He was propounder of Advaita philosophy i.e., non-dualism or the doctrine of monoism.

He established maths (monasteries) at Badrinath, Dwarka, Sringeri and Puri.

Sharada script: The Kashmiri language was originally written in Sharada script.

Sharda Act: deals with child marriage.

Shashagani: was a coin introduced by Mohammad-bin-Tughlaq having two fractions of mixed copper and silver coinage half and quarter jitals, described as adha (half) and bikh respectively.

Sher Afghan: was the first husband of Nur Jahan, originally known as Mihr-ul-nisa whom Jahangir married in 1611.

Sher Shah Suri: He ruled during 1540-45. He introduced Afghan form of administration. He built Grand Trunk Road from the river Indus to Sonargaon in Bengal. The monument Purana Qila in Delhi was built by him (Refer Kila-Kuhna Mosque).

He is known for introduction of the system of horse-posts which facilitated quick exchange of news and supplied the Government with information from different parts of the Empire.

Shivaji: Born in 1627, was a brave general, military genius and capable administrator. He formally crowned himself in 1614 at Rajgarh. His council of ministers was called Ashta Pradhan.

Shuja-ud-daulah: (1754-75) was an implortant figure in the history of northern India. He played a very important part in the Battle of Buxar (1764).

Shyamji Krishna Varma: is known to have made the first organised attempt to establish a centre for training, propaganda and political action for India’s deliverance from British oppression.

He established the Home Rule Society in 1905 and then opened a centre for study and propaganda in London, called the India House. (See also under Home Rule Society).

Sikandar Lodi: was the Delhi Sultanate ruler who moved the capital from Delhi to a new town which later came to be known as Agra.

Sikandra: near Agra, is known for Akbar’s tomb. It was commenced by Akbar himself and completed by his son Jahangir in 14 years’ time.

Sikh War, First: The British did not annex Punjab after winning the war because Lord Harding doubted his strength to occupy the Punjab. He needed more troops.

Sikh War, Second: took place during the period of Lord Dalhousie.

Simla Pact: It was signed between India and Pakistan in 1972 after India defeated Pakistan in the war started by Pakistan on Dec 3, 1971.

Simon Commission: was appointed by the British government in November, 1927, to enquire into the progress of responsible government in India. It first visited India in 1928. It did not have Indian representation. It omitted any mention of dominion status and did not recommend transfer of power to India.

Simuka: Refer Satavahanas.

Sindhu: is the river most mentioned in early Vedic literature.

Siri fort city: was built by Allauddin Khilji.

Sitadhyaksha: Superintendent of Agriculture was known as Sitadhyaksha

Smriti: is the traditional knowledge and designates almost the entire body of post-Vedic classical Sanskrit literature. It is often referred to as sastra, a term applied to any religious or philosophical treatise. Manu Smriti is the oldest Smriti.

Solankis: of the Rajput Clan rose to power in Malwa.

Somnath Temple: was robbed in 1025 A.D. Somnath Temple is situated in Gujarat.

Stupa: During the reign of Ashoka, Stupa was a symbol of Parinirvana.

Stupa, highest in the world: is situated near Abhishek Pushkarni in Vaishali district of Bihar.

Stupas at Sanchi: portray the art and sculpture of Buddhists.

Subsidiary Alliance: In order to safeguard and further the interests of the British Empire, Lord Wellesly, Governor-General of India (1798-1805), followed the policy of subsidiary alliances with regard to the Indian powers, which implied that the Indian powers “were to make no wars and to carry on no negotiations with any other state without the knowledge and consent of the British Government.

The greater principalities were each to maintain a native force commanded by British officers. The lesser principalities were to pay a tribute to the paramount power.

In return the British Government was to protect them, one and all , against foreign enemies of every sort”. Later, the feeble princes were bowed off the mansad into well-pensioned retirements.

The first Indian ruler of a state who joined the Subsidiary Alliance was the Nizam of Hyderabad.

Sufi Movement: In India, Sufi Movement existed in the 10th century. The Sufis propounded the idea of union with God through love.

Sulah-i-kul of Akbar: denotes Universal Toleration or ‘Peace with all’.

Sultan Firoz Shah Memoirs: is known as Tarikh-i-Firoz Shahi.

Sumerian civilization: evolved a proper system of writing.

Sumerian Civilization: flourished on the banks of the rivers Eupherates and Tigris.

Surat Split: The first major split in the Congress occurred in 1907 at Surat.

Surendra Sahi: was the prince of Sambalpur (Orissa) who led a number of anti-British revolts in 1857. He was held prisoner in the Hazaribagh jail but was rescued by the rebellious sepoys who challenged the authority of the British government. It was not till 1862 that Surendra Shahi surrendered and was deported.

Surya Sen: was responsible for Chittagong Armoury Raid.

Surya-Sidhanta of Aryabhatta: It was translated into Arabic by al-Biruni.

Sushruta Samhita: is associated with surgery.

Susrutha: is known for his work on medicine during the Gupta period.

Suvarna: is referred to as gold coin in the Gupta inscriptions.

Svetketu: According to the tradition the once universally prevalent custom of indiscriminate sexual union was stopped by the sage Svetketu, son of Uddalaka, who established the custom of the permanent monadrous union. It is binding not only in this life but in the life hereafter.

Manu declared that for a woman, marriage was ‘for all time irrevocable, and indissolute. Divorce and remarriage were absolutely forbidden.’

Swaraj Party: It was the first to moot in 1934 the idea of a Constituent Assembly to frame a Constitution for India. C.R. Das was leader of the Swaraj Party in Bengal.

Swarajist Party: The founders of the Swarajist Party were Vithal Bhai Patel, Moti Lal Nehru and C.R. Das.

Swarajya is my Birthright and I Will Have It: Bal Gangadhar Tilak gave this popular slogan when in 1915-16, the two Home Rule Leagues (one started under the leadership of Mrs Annie Besant and the other under the leadership of Bal Gangadhar Tilak) worked in cooperation and carried out intense propaganda over the country in favour of the demand for the grant of Home Rule or self-government to India.


Tabo Monastery: celebrated 1000 years of existence in 1996. It is also known as Ajanta of the Himalayas.

Tagara: was an important trade centre of ancient India on the trade route connecting Kalyana and Vengi.

Tahqiq-i-Hind: was written by Alberuni. Also refer Alberuni.

Taimur: invaded India in 1398.

Taj Mahal: is marble mausoleum built at Agra at the river Yamuna by Shah Jehan. Its architectural features resemble Humayun’s Tomb at Delhi.

Takshila (Taxila): is the ancient oldest Vihar in India. It was a great centre of trade and commerce in the Gupta period.

Talikota, Battle of: As per the latest researches, the so-called battle of Talikota, fought between the Deccan Muslim States and Vijayanagar, was actually fought between villages Rakkasi-Tangadi.

Tamil, Telegu and Malayalam: belong to the Dravidian linguistic family.

Tamralipti: now Tamluk, is the ancient name of an important port on the north-eastern coast of India during the Gupta period.

According to Jain sources, Tamralipti was the capital of the kingdom of Venga and was long known as a port.

Tanka: was a silver coin of the Sultanate period of India.

Tansen: of Gwalior specialised in Ragas music.

Tarain, Second Battle of: In this battle, Mohammad Ghori defeated Prithviraj Chauhan.

Tarikh-i-Yamini: was written by Utbi.

Tarik-i-Firuzshahi: was written by Ziyaudin Berni.

Tashkent Pact: was signed between India and Pakistan on January 11, 1966.

Tattvabodhini Patrika: a journal of the Brahmo Samaj under the editorship of Akshay Kumar Datta, was started by Debendranath Tagore.

Temple architecture Indian style: Nagara, Dravida, and Vesara are the three main styles of Indian temple architecture.

Tharus: are tribal people of the Tarai region of the Himalayan foot-hills located in southern Nepal and in Uttar Pradesh. They are largely Indian in culture.

Therigatha: was not a part of early Jaina literature.

Thirukkural: was written during the period of the later Pandyas.

Tilak, Bal Gangadhar: known as ‘Lokmanya’ and ‘Father of the Indian Unrest’ was a great political leader and profound religious scholar. He founded Home Rule League in 1916 and was the first Indian to demand freedom as his birthright. He was considered an extremist.

He was imprisoned for six years in 1908 and sent to Mandalay (Burma).

Timur: He invaded India in 1398 A.D. during the reign of Nasiruddin Mahmud Shah.

Tinkathia: This system related to indigo planting in Champaran (Bihar). According to it, the Champaran tenant was bound by law to plant three kathas out of every twenty (which make one acre) of his land with indigo for his landlord.

Gandhij’s Champaran struggle was against this system.

Tipu Sultan: Raja of Mysore. He had his capital in Seringapatnam. He died fighting the British in the 4th Mysore War in 1799. This was the real beginning of British territorial dominion in South India.

Todar Mal: was one of the Nau Rattans and Revenue Minister of Akbar. He helped Akbar in introducing Land Revenue Administration.

Tomaras: Refer Dhillika (Delhi).

Toramana: belonged to the ethnic horde of the Huns. The Huns under Toramana pushed their conquest deep into the interior as far as Eastern Malwa, but their imperial power was finally shattered in 533-34 A.D. by Yasodharman, an energetic and ambitious chief of Mandasor in Western Malwa.

Trade Union Congress: Indian Trade Union Congress was created in 1920 by N.M. Joshi.

Transfer of India’s capital: The transfer of India’s capital from Calcutta to Delhi took place during the regime of Lord Hardinge-II.

Treaty of Allahabad: was signed in 1765 during the reign of Shah Alam-II.

Treaty of Purandhar: establishing a general peace agreement between the English and Marathas was signed in 1776.

Tripitakas: are sacred books of the Buddhist.

Triratna: or ‘three jewels’is associated with Jainism.

Tulsi Das: author of Ram Charit Manas,was the famous Hindi poet in the Mughal period. He lived during the reign of Akbar. He did not belong to the ‘Nirgula School’.

Turushkadanda: was a tax collected by the Gahadavalas during the early medieval India.

Tuzik-i-Babri or Memoirs of Babar: was written in Turkish.

Tyabji, Badruddin: He was the first Muslim President of the Indian National Congress. He was elected in 1887 at the Madras session.


Ulagh Khan: He was the general of Sultan Ghaiyas-ud-din. In 1323, he defeated Prataparudra, the Kakatiya ruler of Warangal.

Ulemas: were Muslim clergy.

Ulgulan Rebellion: is associated with Santhals.

Upanishads: are works embodying the mystical doctrines of ancient Hindu philosophy. The major Upanishads deal with some of the great problems like the nature of God and the soul, of man and the world, and the relation between them; the nature and purpose of existence; the ultimate reality and the attainment of salvation by man.

The fundamental doctrine of the Upanishads is the identity of the individual soul with the Universal soul. The Upanishads are not the Vedic text. Upanishads were translated into Persian on the instance of Dara Shikoh.


Vagbhata: is regarded as unrivalled in his knowledge of the basic principles of Ayurveda.

Vaiseshika: is one of the six orthodox systems of Hindu philosophy, founded by the sage Kasyapa (or Kanada).

Vaishnava Sect: founded by Chaitanya (1485-1534), was popular in Bengal and Orissa.

Vakatakas: belong to the period of Guptas. During the reign of the emperor Chandragupta-II, the Vakataka kingdom was much under the Gupta influence.

Vamsa: According to ancient Hindu society, those who are descended fron one rishi in a direct line constitute a vamsa, or dynastic family.

Varahmihira: (505-587 A.D.) was a great Indian astronomer, mathematician and philosopher. He was one of the nine gems of the court of king Vikramaditya. He was born near Ujjain.

Varun: is the important divinity of Rig Veda.

Vasco da Gama: was a Portuguese sailor who, in 1498, rounded the Cape of Good Hope and succeeded in reaching the port of Calicut on April 22, 1498. He thus discovered the sea route to India.

Vatapi (or Badami): now in the Bijapur district of Karnataka, where Pulakesin I, founder of the Chalukya dynasty in the middle of the sixth century, established himself as lord of Vatapi or Badami (capital of Chalukyas).
It is well-known for Chalukyan sculpture found in the cave temples here.

Vatsyayana: He wrote Kamasutra.

Veda: the word Veda means knowledge.

Vedangas: Refer Kalpa.

Vedic Age: The age of early Vedic period is 1500-1000 B.C. Agriculture was the main occupation of Aryans in the Vedic period.

Vengi: was the capital of Eastern Chalukyas.

Vernacular Press Act, 1878: Lord Lytton passed this Act in 1878 which sought to conrol the Vernacular Press. The measure was regarded as part of a policy to hamper the growth of a Nationalist India.
The Act was repealed by Lord Rippon and newspapers were again owed equal freedom in dealing with the social and political questions.

Vidushaka: the constant companion and confidant of the hero in Sanskrit dramas, was nearly always a Brahmin.

Vijaynagar Kingdom: (1336-1565) was a Hindu kingdom in the Deccan founded during the reign of Mohammad Tughlaq by two Hindu brothers Hari Har and Bukka Raya in order to check the tide of Muslim conquests.

Raja Krishna Dev was the most famous king of this kingdom. Land tax was the special feature of the financial system of Vijaynagar kingdom.

Vijnanesvara: was a jurist. He wrote at the court of the Chalukya king Vikramaditya-VI. He was author of Mitakshara, a commentary on Hindu law

Vijnanesvara: Refer Mitakshara.

Vikrama Era (or Vikrama Samvat): is recokned from 58 B.C.

Vimal Vaseeh and Loon Vaseeh: The marble carvings inside the Vimal Vaseeh and Loon Vaseeh (Dilwara temples) called “a dream in marble” were damaged by the soldiers of the Muslim invader Ala-ud-din Khilji during his invasion of Rajasthan and Gujarat.

Vinoba Bhave: was selected as the first Satyagrahi in Individual Satyagrah Movement launched by Mahatma Gandhi.

Vish: In the Vedic society, the term vish denoted a group of families.

Vishaya: was the most important of the smaller administrative units of the Gupta empire.

Vishayapati: During the Gupta period of Indian history, village affairs were managed by the village headman with the assistance of Vishayapati.

Vivekanand, Swami: was founder of the Ramakrishna Mission.


Wahabi Movement: was started in India by Sayyid Ahmad of Bareilly who was influenced by Wahabi ideas from Arabia. This became the militant ‘Wahabi’ movement of the early nineteenth century , with its headquarters at Patna.

It could not, however, achieve the status of a national movement because (a) it was thoroughly communal, (b) it had no nationalist ideal, and © it denied membership to the non-Muslims.

Wandiawash, Battle of: In the battle of Wandiawash in 1760, the English defeated the French.

Warangal: was the capital of Kakatiyas. Refer also Ulagh Khan.

Warren Hastings: Governor General of India who knew both Persian and Bengali. He was impeached by the British Parliament.

Weight (or measure): The basic weight in ancient India was Raktika.

Widows’ re-marriage: Re-marriage of widows was legalised by the Act III of 1872.

William Bentinck, Lord: Governor-General of India (1828-1835). He is remembered for his reforms such as abolition of Sati, suppression of Thuggee, Western education.

The decision to impart English education through the medium of English language was taken during his period.

Wonder of the age: This description about Mohammad Tughlak is given in the travel accounts of Ibn Batuta.

Wood’s Despatch of 1854: resulted in the introduction of Postal system in India.


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Yadav dynasty (1190-1294): was brought to an end in 1294 with the capture of Devagiri (modern Daulatabad) in the northern Deccan by Alaud-din-Khilji.

Yakshagana: was the south Indian dance tradition that appeared for the first time in the Vijayanagar period.

Yaska: is associated with etymology (study of the origin and history of words). The treatise of Yaska (320 B. C.) is regarded as the standard work on Vedic etymology in which he explains meanings of words and investigates their origin.

Yoga: It is one of the six orthodox systems of Hindu philosophy, believed to have been founded by the sage Yajnavalkya, and later codified by Patanjali in his Yoga-sutras. Yoga has been defined as a form of mental and physical discipline.

There is evidence to show that some of the yoga disciplines were in existence at the time of the Indus Valley Civilization.

Young Bengal Movement: was started by Henry Vivian Louis Derozia.

Young India: was a magazine started by Gandhiji.

Yugas: According to ancient Indian cosmogonic ideas, the sequential order of the cycle of four aeons (Yugas) is Krita, Treta, Dvapara and Kali.


Zabti System: was introduced by Akbar for land revenue administration. In Zabti system, land was measured and assessment of land revenue was based upon it..

Zawabits: were concerned with State laws. The Delhi Sultanate framed their own regulations called Zawabits (secular decrees) for ensuring that things forbidden by the shara were, as far as possible, not flouted openly.

Zia-ud-din Barni: His historical works give the source material of Tughlaq dynasty.

Zili Ilahi (shadow of God on earth): Allauddin Khilji declared himself as ‘Zili Illahi’.


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