Ancient India Simplified: Post Mauryan Period-The rise of Native Kingdoms (Sungas, Kanvas and Satavahanas).

This period witnessed the clash, the rise and fall of a number of smaller kingdoms. The native dynasties like Shungas, Satavahanas, and the Kanvas ruled in eastern India, central India and the Deccan region. Foreigners like Indo-Greeks or Bactrians, Sakas, the Parthians and the Kushanas ruled in north-western India.

Native Kingdoms (Sungas, Kanvas and Satavahanas)

Sungas1. Capital at Pataliputra and a second capital at Vidisha.
2. According to Purana, Brihadratha, the last ruler of the Mauryan dynasty was assassinated by his own commander-in-chief Pushyamitra Sunga.
3. Revived Brahmanical order and Sanskrit language and patronised scholars like Patanjali and Manu.
4. Kalidasa’s play ‘Malvikagnimitra’ is a love story of the King Agnimitra (Pushyamitra’s son) and a handmaiden Malvika.
5. According to Divya Vadana, Pushyamitra was prosecutor of Buddhism and he put a price of one hundred gold 6. Dinaras on the head of every Buddhist monk.
6. However the sungas were great patrons of art. They constructed a large number of Stupas, Viharas and Railings etc. The railings of Barhut Stupa, one of the Gateways of Sanchi Stupa and the Chaitya Hall at Karle are some exquisite examples. Also There was an increase in the usage of human figures and symbols in art during this period.
7. The Ramayana and Mahabharata were also given final touches during this period.
8. Hinduism and the Caste system  was revived under the Sungas.
9. Another important development during the Sunga reign was the emergence of various mixed castes and the integration of foreigners into Indian society.
10. They in fact set the ground for the advancement of Hinduism under the Guptas.
Kanvas1. The last Sunga king was Devabhuti, who was assassinated by Vasudeva Kanva in 72 B.C.
2. Vidisha and Patliputra were their capital.
3. According to the Puranas, the last king of the Kanva dynasty, Susarman,  was killed by Balipuccha, who founded the Satavahanas.
Satavahanas (Andhras)1. The Satavahanas (Founder: Simukha) conquered the Andhara territory which lay between Krishna and Godavari.
2. Their primary capital at Pratishthana (modern Paithan in Maharashtra) on Godavari river & second Capital was Amravati.
3. From the edicts of Ashoka, it appears that Andhras were under the suzerainty of the Mauryas and possibly declared their independence after their downfall.
4. Gautamiputra Satkarni was the greatest ruler who defeated Sakas ( King Nahapana), Greeks and Parthians.
5. Around 150 CE, Rudradaman of Sakas took advantage of weak successors of Gautamiputra Satkarni and defeated Shri Pulmavi.

The Satavahanas is explained elaborately in the next unit.

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