Copyright
Max Duncker.

The history of antiquity (Volume 4) online

. (page 1 of 43)
Online LibraryMax DunckerThe history of antiquity (Volume 4) → online text (page 1 of 43)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


Columbia (Bntottsftp

intijeCitpirfUfttigork




THE HISTORY OF ANTIQUITY.



THE



HISTORY OP ANTIQUITY.







FROM THE GERMAN



OF



oauaxLL,



LIBRA KY



i



\ n.ro'm.K. J

PROFESSOR MAX DUSKER,-



BY



EVELYN ABBOTT, M.A., LL.D.

FELLOW AND TUTOR OF HALLTOL COLLEGE, OXFORD.



VOL. IV.




LONDON :
RICHARD BENTLEY & SON, NEW BURLINGTON STREET,

publishers in (Drbinarji to ?jcr Sbjcsti] % Qiuui.



1880.



330

4-



CLAY AND TAYLOR, PRINTERS.



CONTENTS.

BOOK V.
THE ARIANS ON THE INDUS AND THE GANGES.



CHAPTER I.

THE LAND AND THE PEOPLE



30662



PAGE



CHAPTER II.

THE ARYAS ON THE INDUS ... ... ... ... 27

CHAPTER III.

THE CONQUEST OF THE LAND OF THE GANGES ... ... 65

CHAPTER IV.

THE FORMATION AND ARRANGEMENT OF THE ORDERS ... 110

CHAPTER Y.

THE OLD AND THE NEW RELIGION ... ... ... ... 154

CHAPTER VI.

THE CONSTITUTION AND LAW OF THE INDIANS ... ... 188

CHAPTER VII.

THE CASTES AND THE FAMILY ... ... ... ... 23G

CHAPTER VIII.

THE THEOLOGY AND PHILOSOPHY OF THE RRA1IMANS ... 270



«3



vi CONTENTS.



BOOK VI.
BUDDHISTS AND BRAHNANS.

CHAPTEE I.

PAGE

THE STATES ON THE GANGES IX THE SIXTH CENTURY B.C. ... 315

CHAPTEE II.

buddha's life axd teaching ... ... ... ... 330

CHAPTEE III.

the kingdom of magadha and the settlements in the south 365

CHAPTEE IV.

THE NATIONS AND PRINCES OF THE LAND OF THE INDUS ... 383

CHAPTEE V.

THE POLITICAL AND SOCIAL LIFE OF THE INDIANS IN THE FOURTH

CENTURY B.C. ... ... ... ... ... 408

CHAPTEE VI.

CHANDRAGUPTA OF MAGADHA ... ... ... ... 439

CHAPTEE VII.

THE RELIGION OF THE BUDDHISTS ... ... ... ... 454

CHAPTEE VIII.

[E REFORMS OF THE BRAHMANS ... ... ... ... 491

CHAPTEE IX.

ACOKA OF MAGADHA ... ... ... ... ... 521

CHAPTEE X.

RETROSPECT . . . ,544



BOOK V.

THE AKIANS ON THE INDUS AND

THE GANGES.



■ -Oi,.CaLl,. X t



)■



" Lirni irv






* I






INDIA.



NWOlt

mr wan ^ ■>■■ ■-»-■» ■ — ■»»»" » ■ w^^»




CHAPTER I.

THE LAND AND THE PEOPLE.

It was not only in the lower valley of the Nile, on the
banks of the Euphrates and the Tigris, and along the
coast and on the heights of Syria that independent
forms of intellectual and civic life grew up in antiquity.
By the side of the early civilisation of Egypt, and the
hardly later civilisation of that unknown people from
which Elam, Babylon, and Asshur borrowed such im-
portant factors in the development of their own
capacities ; along with the civilisation of the Semites
of the East and West, who here observed the heavens,
there busily explored the shores of the sea ; here erected
massive buildings, and there were so earnestly occu-
pied with the study of their own inward nature, are
found forms of culture later in their origin, and repre-
sented by a different family of nations. This family,
the Indo-European, extends over a far larger area than
the Semitic. We find branches of it in the wide
districts to the east of the Semitic nations, on the
table-land of Iran, in the valleys of the Indus and the
Ganges. Other branches we have already encountered
on the heights of Armenia, and the table-land of Asia

VOL, IV. B







2 INDIA.

Minor (I. 512, 524). Others again obtained posses-
sion of the plains above the Black Sea ; others, of the
peninsulas of Greece and Italy. Nations of this stock
have forced their way to the shores of the Atlantic
Ocean ; we find them settled on the western coast of
the Spanish peninsula, from the mouth of the Garonne
to the Channel, in Britain and Ireland no less than in
Scandinavia, on the shores of the North Sea and the
Baltic. Those branches of the family which took up
their abodes the farthest to the East exhibit the most
independent and peculiar form of civilisation.

The mutual relationship of the Arian, Greek, Italian,
Letto-Sclavonian, Germanic, and Celtic languages proves
the relationship of the nations who have spoken and
still speak them ; it proves that all these nations have
a common origin and descent. The words, of which the
roots in these languages exhibit complete phonetic agree-
ment, must be considered as a common possession,
acquired before the separation ; and from this we can
discover at what stage of life the nation from which
these languages derive their origin stood at the time
when it was not yet divided into these six great
branches, and separated into the nations which subse-
quently occupied abodes so extensive and remote from
each other. We find common terms for members of the
family, for house, yard, garden, and citadel ; common
words for horses, cattle, dogs, swine, sheep, goats, mice,
geese, ducks ; common roots for wool, hemp or flax,
corn (i. e. wheat, spelt, or barley), for ploughing, grind-
ing, and weaving, for certain metals (copper or iron), for
some weapons and tools, for waggon, boat and rudder,
for the elementary numbers, and the division of the
year according to the moon. 1 Hence the stock, whose

1 Whitney, "Language," p. 327; Benfey, " Geschichte der
Sprachwissenchaft," s, 598.



THE LAND AND THE PEOPLE. 3

brandies and shoots have spread over the whole
continent of Europe and Asia from Ceylon to Britain
and Scandinavia, cannot, even before the separation,
have been without a certain degree of civilisation.
On the contrary, this common fund of words proves
that even in that early time it tilled the field, and
reared cattle ; that it could build waggons and boats,
and forge weapons, and if the general name for the
gods and some names of special deities are the same
in widely remote branches of this stock, — in India, Iran,
Greece, and Italy, and even on the plains of Lithu-
ania, — it follows that the notions which lie at the base
of these names must also be counted among the com-
mon possessions existing before the separation.

We can hardly venture a conjecture as to the region
in which the fathers of the Indo-European nations
attained to this degree of cultivation. It must have
been of such a nature as to admit of agriculture beside
the breeding of cattle. The varieties of produce men-
tioned and the domestic animals point to a northern
district, which, however, cannot have reached down to
the ocean, inasmuch as no common roots are in existence
to denote the sea. This proof is strengthened by the
fact that in all the branches the wolf and bear alone
among beasts of prey are designated by common roots.
If we combine these considerations with the equal
extension of the tribes of this nation towards east
and west, we may assume that an elevated district in
the middle of the eastern continent was the abode of
the nation while yet undivided.

The branches which occupied the table-land of Iran
and the valley of the Indus were the first to rise from
the basis acquired in common to a higher civilisation ;
and even they did not attain to this till long after
the time when Egypt, under the ancient kingdom of

B 2



4 INDIA.

Memphis, found herself in the possession of a many-
sidecl culture, after Babylon had become the centre of
a different conception of life and development. The
western branches of the Indo-Europeans remained at
various stages behind their eastern fellow-tribesmen

o

in regard to the epochs of their higher culture. If
the Greeks, who were brought into frequent contact
with the civilisation of the Semites, came next in point
of time after the eastern tribes, and the Italians next to
the Greeks, it was only through conflict and contact
with the culture of Greece and Eome that the western
branches reached a higher stage, while the dwellers on
the plains of the Baltic owe their cultivation to the
influences of Germanic life. Finally, when the West
European branches, the Indo-Germans, had developed
independently their capacities and their nature, when
in different phases they had received and assimilated
what had been left behind by their Greek and Koman
kinsmen, and formed it into the civilisation of the
modern world, their distant navigation came into
contact with the ancient civilisation, to which their
fellow-tribesmen in the distant East had finally at-
tained some 2000 years previously. "With wonder
and astonishment the long-separated, long-estranged
relatives looked each other in the face. But even now
the ancient, deeply - rooted, and variously -developed
civilisation of the eastern branch maintains its place
with tough endurance beside the mobile, comprehen-
sive, and restlessly-advancing civilisation of the west.
On the southern edge of the great table-land which
forms the nucleus of the districts of Asia, the range of
the Himalayas rises in parallel lines. The range runs
from north-west to south-east, with a breadth of from
200 to 250 miles, and a length of about 1750 miles.
It presents the highest elevations on the surface of



THE LAND AND THE PEOPLE. 5

the earth. Covered with boundless fields of snow and
extensive glaciers, the sharp edges and points of the
highest ridge rise gleaming into the tropic sky ; no
sound breaks the deep silence of this solemn Alpine
wild. To the south of these mighty white towers, in
the second range, is a multitude of summits, separated
by rugged ravines. Here also is neither moss nor
herb, for this range also rises above the limits of
vegetation. Much lower down, a third range, of which
the average elevation rises to more than 12,000 feet,
displays up to the summits forests of a European
kind ; in the cool, fresh air the ridges are clothed with
birches, pines, and oaks. Beneath this girdle of north-
ern growths, on the heights which gradually sink down
from an elevation of 5000 feet, are thick forests of
Indian fig-trees of gigantic size. Under the forest
there commences in the west a hilly region, in the east
a marshy district broken by lakes which the mountain
waters leave behind in the depression, and covered
with impenetrable thickets, tall jungles, and rank
grass — a district oppressive and unhealthy, inhabited
by herds of elephants, crocodiles, and large snakes.

The mighty wall of the Himalayas decides the nature
and life of the extensive land which lies before it to
the south in the same way as the peninsula of Italy
lies before the European Alps. It protects hill and
plain from the raw winds which blow from the north
over the table-land of Central Asia ; it checks the rain-
clouds, the collected moisture of the ocean brought up
by the trade winds from the South Sea. These clouds
are compelled to pour their water into the plains at
the foot of the Himalayas, and change the glow of the
sun into coolness, the parched vegetation into fresh
green. Owing to their extraordinary elevation, the
mountain masses of the Himalayas, in spite of their



INDIA.



southern situation, preserve such enormous fields of
ice and snow that they are able to discharge into the
plains the 'mightiest rivers in the world. From the
central block flow the Indus, the Ganges, and the
Brahmaputra, i. e. the son of Brahma.

Springing from fields of snow, which surround
Alpine lakes, the Indus descends from an elevated
mountain plain to the south of the highest ridge. At
first the river flows in a westerly direction through a
cleft between parallel rows of mountains. In spite of
the long and severe winter of this region, mountain
sheep and goats flourish here, and the sandy soil con-
tains gold-dust. To the south of the course of the river
we find depressions in the mountains, where the climate
is happily tempered by the nature of the sky and the
elevation of the soil. The largest of these is the
valley of Cashmere, surrounded by an oval of snowy
mountains. To the west of Cashmere the Indus turns
its course suddenly to the south ; it breaks through
the mountain ranges which bar its way, and from this
point to the mouth accompanies the eastern slope of
the table-land of Iran. As soon as the Himalayas are
left behind, a hilly land commences on the left bank,
of moderate warmth and fruitful vegetation, spreading
out far to the east between the tributaries of the stream.
The river now receives the Panjab, and the valley is
narrowed in the west by the closer approach of the
mountains of Iran ; in the east by a wide, waterless
steppe, descending from the spurs of the Himalayas
to the sea, which affords nothing beyond a scanty
maintenance for herds of buffaloes, asses, and camels.
The heat becomes greater as the land becomes flatter,
and the river more southerly in its course ; in
the dry months the earth cracks and vegetation is
at a standstill. Any overflow from the river, which



THE LAND AND THE PEOPLE. 7

miolit give it new vigour, on the melting of the snow
in the upper mountains, is prevented for long dis-
tances by the elevation of the banks. The Delta
formed by the Indus at its mouth, after a course of
1500 miles, contains only a few islands of good marsh
soil. The sea comes up over the flat shore for a long
distance, and higher up the arms of the river a thick
growth of reeds and rushes hinders cultivation, while
the want of fresh water makes a numerous population
impossible.

Not far from the sources of the Indus, at the very
nucleus of the highest summits of the Himalayas, rise the
Yamuna (Jumna) and the Ganges. The Ganges flows
out of fields of snow beneath unsurmountable summits of
more than 20,000 feet in height, and breaking through
the mountains to the south reaches the plains ; here
the course of the river is turned to the east by the
broad and thickly- wooded girdle of the Vinclhyas, the
mountain range which rises to the south of the plains.
Enlarged by a number of tributaries from north and
south, it pours from year to year copious inundations
over the low banks, and thus creates for the plains
through which it flows a fruitful soil where tropic
vegetation can flourish in the most luxuriant wildness.
This is the land of rice, of cotton, of sugar-canes, of
the blue lotus, the edible banana, the gigantic fig-tree.
On the lower course of the river, where it approaches
the Brahmaputra, which also at first flows between
the parallel ranges of the Himalayas towards the east,
in the same way as the Indus flows to the west, there
commences a hot, moist, and luxuriant plain (Bengal)
of enervating climate, covered with coco and arica
palms, with the tendrils of the betel, and the stalks
of the cinnamon, with endless creepers overgrowing
the trunks of the trees, and ascending even to their



8 INDIA.

topmost branches. Here the river is so broad that the
eye can no longer reach from one bank to the other.
In the region at the mouth, where the Ganges unites
with the Brahmaputra, and then splits into many
arms, the numerous waters create hot marshes ; and
here the vegetation is so abundant, the jungles of
bamboo so thick and impenetrable, that they are
abandoned to the rhinoceros, the elephant, and the
tiger, whose proper home is in these wooded morasses.
Into this wide region, which in length, from north
to south, exceeds the distance from Cape Skagen to
Cape Spartivento, and in breadth, from east to west, is
about equal to the distance from Bayonne to Odessa,
came a branch of the family, whose common origin
has been noticed, and their civilisation previous to the
separation of the members sketched. The members of
this branch called themselves Arya, i. e. the noble, or
the ruling. In the oldest existing monuments of their
laDguage and poetry these Aryas are found invoking
their gods to grant them room against the Dasyus, 1 to
make a distinction between Arya and Dasyu, to place
the Dasyus on the left hand, to turn away the arms of
the Dasyus from the Aryas, to make the hostile nations
of the Dasyus bow down before the Aryas, to increase
the might and glory of the Aryas, to subjugate the
" Black -skins" to them. 2 In the epic poetry of the
Indians we find mention of black inhabitants of Hi-
mavat (i. e. inhabitants of the snowy mountaiDS, the
Himalayas), and of "black Qudra' beyond the delta

1 "Bigveda," 1, 59, 2; 7, 5, 6; 10, 69, 6. Cf. Maim, 10, 45.
That in the Kigveda the Dasyus are always enemies, and even evil
spirits, is beyond a doubt, and cannot excite any wonder when we
remember how the Indians confound the natural and supernatural ;
Muir, " Sanskrit Texts," 2 2 , 358 ff. On the original meaning of the
word Dasyu, and its signification in the Mahabharata, cf. Lassen,
" Ind. Alterth." I 2 , 633. 2 Muir, Joe. cit. 5, 110, 113.



THE LAND AND THE PEOPLE. 9

of the Indus. By the same name, Qudra, the Aryas
designated the population which became subject to
them in the valley of the Ganges ; and when they
advanced from the valleys of the Indus and the
Ganges towards the south, to the coasts of the Deccan,
they found there also populations of a similar kind.
Even at the present day the inhabitants of India fall
into two great masses, essentially distinguished from
each other by the formation of their bodies and their
language. In the broad and inaccessible belt of the
Vindhya mountains, which separates the peninsula of
the Deccan from the plains of the two rivers, are
situated the tribes of the Gondas, men of a deep-black
colour, with thick, long, and black hair, barbarous
manners, and a peculiar language. Closely allied to
these nations are the slim and black Bhillas, of small
stature, who inhabit the western slopes of the A^indhyas
to the sea ; and the Kolas, who dwell in the mountainous
district of Surashtra (Guzerat), and to this day form
two-thirds of the inhabitants of this district. 1 On the
eastern declivities and spurs of the Vmdhyas we find
in the south the Kandas, in the north the Paharias,
nations also of a dark colour and thick long hair.
Distinct from these rude savages, less dark in colour,
and exhibiting; other modes of life, are the tribes
which possess the coasts of the Deccan, the Carnatas,
Tuluwas, and Malabars on the west, the Tamilas and
Telingas on the east. Opposed to all these tribes are
the Aryas, with their light colour and decisively Cau-
casian stamp. These once spoke Sanskrit, and are still
acquainted with the language, and to them is due the
development of civilisation in these wide districts.

This juxtaposition of two populations, of which one
is in possession of the best districts in the country,

1 Lassen, loc. cit. I 2 , 440.



10 INDIA.

while of the other only fragments are in existence
(combined masses are not found except in the most
inaccessible regions), — the indications supplied by these
invocations, according to which the light- coloured popu-
lation on the Indus was in conflict with the " Black-
skins," — the fact that the light-coloured population,
both on the Ganges and the coasts of the Deccan, has
always taken up an exclusive and contemptuous posi-
tion towards the darker tribes existing there, justify
the conclusion that the whole region from the Indus
to the mouths of the Ganges, from the Himalayas to
Cape Comorin, once belonged to the dark population,
and that the Aryas are immigrants. These immigrants
partly drove back the ancient population, and confined
it in hardly accessible mountains or morasses, partly
forced it to submit to their rule and accept their
civilisation, partly allowed it to live among them,
as now, in a despicable and subordinate position. In
historical times we can trace this process, by which
the old population was driven back or civilised, on the
coasts of the Deccan and in Ceylon. From the posi-
tion of the remnant of this population on the Ganges,
and these invocations of the Aryas, which spring from
a time when they were not yet established in the land
of the Ganges, we may conclude that a similar process
went on in a severer form on the Indus. Following
the example of the Indians, modern science collects
the languages of these inhabitants of India, who are
found under and among the Aryas, so far as they at
present exist, under the names of the Nishada and
Dravida languages. 1 The language of the Brahuis to
the west of the Indus, — they were settled there, or at
least retired from thence, at the time of the immigra-
tion of the Aryas, — the Canaresian, the Malayalam, the

1 Lassen, loc. tit. I 2 , 461.



THE LAND AND THE PEOPLE. 11

language of the Tamilas, of the Telingas, the Badaga
of the inhabitants of the Nilgiri, on the southern
apex of the Deccan, are closely related, but to which
of the great stems of language they are to be appor-
tioned is not determined. 1

The immigration of the Aryas into India took place
from the west. They stand in the closest relation to
the inhabitants of the table -land of Iran, especially
the inhabitants of the eastern half. These also
call themselves Aryas, though among them the word
becomes Airya, or Ariya, and among the Greeks Arioi.
The language of the Aryas is in the closest connection
with that of the Avesta, the religious books of Iran,
and in very close connection with the language of the
monuments of Darius and Xerxes, in the western half
of that region. The religious conceptions of the
Iranians and Indians exhibit striking traits of a
homogeneous character. A considerable number of
the names of gods, of myths, sacrifices, and customs,
occurs in both nations, though the meaning is not
always the same, and is sometimes diametrically op-
posed. Moreover, the Aryas in India are at first
confined to the borders of Iran, the region of the
Indus, and the Panjab. Here, in the west, the Aryas
had their most extensive settlements, and their oldest
monuments frequently mention the Indus, but not the
Ganges. 2 Even the name by which the Aryas denote
the land to the south of the Vindhyas, Dakshinapatha

1 According to Whitney (" Language," p. 327), the language of
the Kolas and Santals is quite distinct from the Dravidian languages.
Lassen's view on the relation of the Vindhya tribes to the Dravida and
the Nishada is given, loc. cit. 1 2 , 456.

2 The Ganges (Ganga) is mentioned only twice in the Eigveda, and
then without any emphasis or epithet; "Eigveda," 10, 75, 5; G4, 9.
This book is of later origin ; Eoth, " Zur Litcratur und Geschichte des
Veda," s. 127, 130, 137, 139.



12 INDIA.

(Deccan), *'. e. path to the right, 1 confirms the fact
already established, that the Aryas came from the

west.

From this it is beyond a doubt that the Aryas,
descending from the heights of Iran, first occupied
the valley of the Indus and the five tributary streams,
which combine and flow into the river from the north-
east, and they spread as far as they found pastures
and arable land, i. e. as far eastward as the desert
which separates the valley of the Indus from the
Ganges. The river which irrigated their land, watered
their pastures, and shaped the course of their lives
they called Sindhu (in Pliny, Sindus), i. e. the river. 2
It is, no doubt, the region of the Indus, with the Pan-
jab, which is meant in the Avesta by the land liapta
hindu (fiendu), i. e. the seven streams. The inscrip-
tions of Darius call the dwellers on the Indus Idhus.
These names the Greeks render by Indos and Indoi.

Can we fix the time at which the Aryas immigrated
into India and occupied the valley of the Indus ? As
we proceed it will become clear that it was not till a
late period that the nation began to record the names
of the kings of their states, that they never wrote
down in a satisfactory matter their legends and the
facts of their history, and that we cannot find among
them any trustworthy chronology. Even w T ith the
assistance of the statements of western writers, we
can only go back with any certainty to the year 800
B.C. for the dynasties of the kingdom of Magadha,
the most important kingdom in ancient times on the
Ganges. But if at this period the Aryas held sw r ay
not on the upper Ganges only, but also on the lower,

1 This name, it is true, may also have arisen from the fact that the
Indians turned to the east when praying.

2 The root syand means "to flow."



THE LAND AND THE PEOPLE. 13

they must have been already settled on the Indus for
centuries. If the narratives already given of the
foundation of the Assyrian kingdom and the war of
Semiramis on the Indus (II. 9 if) were historical, the
Aryas must have been settled in that country even at
this date, i. e. about 1500 B.C. They must have lived
there under a monarchy which could place great
forces in the field, and they must have been already
acquainted with the use of elephants in war. Stabro-
bates, the name of the king of the Indians who met
Semiramis and repulsed her, would become Qtaorapati,
i, e. lord of oxen, in the language of the Aryas. But
after what has been previously said (II. 19 if), we can



Online LibraryMax DunckerThe history of antiquity (Volume 4) → online text (page 1 of 43)