Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

The Military Issues & History Forum is a venue to discuss issues relating to the military aspects of the Indian Armed Forces, whether the past, present or future. We request members to kindly stay within the mandate of this forum and keep their exchanges of views, on a civilised level, however vehemently any disagreement may be felt. All feedback regarding forum usage may be sent to the moderators using the Feedback Form or by clicking the Report Post Icon in any objectionable post for proper action. Please note that the views expressed by the Members and Moderators on these discussion boards are that of the individuals only and do not reflect the official policy or view of the Bharat-Rakshak.com Website. Copyright Violation is strictly prohibited and may result in revocation of your posting rights - please read the FAQ for full details. Users must also abide by the Forum Guidelines at all times.
Carl_T
BRF Oldie
Posts: 2533
Joined: 24 Dec 2009 02:37
Location: anandasya sagare

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Carl_T » 20 Sep 2010 17:43

Remember how the Arabs entered Spain. India was not the only one to collaborate with Islamic invaders! Seeking foreign help in order to secure your power is not unusual at all, and we cannot blame it on a cultural decline. It happens even today.

Lalmohan
BRF Oldie
Posts: 13262
Joined: 30 Dec 2005 18:28

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Lalmohan » 20 Sep 2010 18:05

its also how the europeans became entrenched in India

manum
BRFite
Posts: 604
Joined: 07 Mar 2010 15:32
Location: still settling...
Contact:

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby manum » 20 Sep 2010 19:56

if we study the history of Mumbai, original natives of Mumbai are Koli fisherman and Shivaji then ruled around Pune, as Maratha, Mumbai was an obsolete island...where no one lived except these fisherman, and there were rumors that there is something in the air, that everyone dies in Mumbai...

then the second occupants who came to Mumbai were these Zoroastrian's (parasi's in popular term) expelled from Iran...whom the king of Gujarat gave pass to Mumbai...as they were not allowed to live in Gujarat...and they settled in Mumbai...

The very first Muslim attack on India had taken place in Sindh in the year 715 C.E. These Muslim invaders were Arabs led by Mohammad Bin Qasim. They had displaced Raja Dabir who ruled Sindh from his capital Deval (near modern Karachi). The actual reason for this invasion was that Raja Dabir was aiding the Iranian (Zoroastrian) princes in trying to overthrow the Arab Rule in Persia.


and then came the British who came as East India company, in time of Shivaji and Aurangzeb, who realized people die in Mumbai because, Fishermen burry the fishes in roots of coconut trees and it leads to a infection being spread...and they banned this practice...

and then the silk route to china and boat making...

and now modern times Mumbai...

PS...I am trying to establish some links if you see...please don't scold me...soon i'll be bang on wars...but i am also interested in few things that came along with it...

Rahul M
Forum Moderator
Posts: 17050
Joined: 17 Aug 2005 21:09
Location: Skies over BRFATA
Contact:

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Rahul M » 20 Sep 2010 20:16

ss_roy, your posts generally have merit but that 'Indians were never united' is just the typical over simplification our fine leftist historians indulge in to gloss over broad swathes of Indian history. it's not the truth.

truth is that more than once Indian kings put their differences away and fought jointly against external aggressors. that is also the reason while most regions fell like dominoes to arab aggression, India (for the most part) never did.

ss_roy
BRFite
Posts: 286
Joined: 15 Nov 2008 21:48

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby ss_roy » 20 Sep 2010 20:21

There have been traitors and collaborators in every culture and era. However, we must ask a rather unpleasant question-

What prevented Indians from forming coalitions even after the true nature of islamic ideology and rule became apparent?

A couple hundred years of mistreatment (11th to 13th century) would have been enough to convince the doubters. So what stopped the formation of effective coalitions to reconquer? Indians were most certainly not always like that, so what changed?

Cohesion sufficient to form stable and strong coalitions requires its members to believe that other members will not desert/ betray or otherwise handicap them.

Even today, groups as diverse as NGOs, Journalists, Politicians, Bureaucrats are working very hard to undermine the rest and each other- just so that they can get a bigger piece of the existing pie. Some of you think that such behavior is based on real ignorance about its consequences, however I believe otherwise. They know what they are doing, even if they are too delusional or ashamed to admit it. Consider how essential and important stuff in India is mishandled. Do you really think that corruption is the problem? If that was so, why does it not affect east-asian societies who are just as corrupt- if not more.

Corruption would not matter if it allowed business to run smoothly. In east-asian countries bribes make things work properly, while in India they are more analogous to "protection" money. Why?

If a society has low levels of social trust- your best option is to to rob/abuse/cripple others and make off with the loot. Anything more complex than looting others requires the person to believe that 'the system works'. But a fragmented and mutually distrustful society make that impossible.

To understand why things went wrong with India, it is necessary to understand what happened between the 5th-8th century. I am talking about social and cultural changes- not military.

Pratyush
BRF Oldie
Posts: 8308
Joined: 05 Mar 2010 15:13

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Pratyush » 20 Sep 2010 20:40

LM, the main thrust of my posts is an attempt to understand what happned in the 5 to 8 th centuries that resulted in the loss of momentum and opening up of India to muslim invaders. As was raised by NR in the post above mine.

Rest I am extreamly ignorent about History so was asking a question in order to understand the reasons of decline better.

manum
BRFite
Posts: 604
Joined: 07 Mar 2010 15:32
Location: still settling...
Contact:

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby manum » 20 Sep 2010 20:58

ya, our history is in patches, we were always taught conclusions, not what happened in between...and there are many versions of it...like we have been told Islamic invaders were barbaric and used to break temples for sake of destruction...but we see, the Qutub minar campus in Delhi, its totally made of dismantled temple parts...specially temple columns are kept on top of each other...their couldn't have been more ingenious idea of fast construction...

Parsians travelled alot, so real craft of construction came to India first with Islamic Invaders...India learnt a lot because of these invasions, and kept on getting richer than depreciating (I am not welcoming the Invaders though)...

In bangal people have peculiar Mangol looks because of Genghis Khan...now one can guess why...

Rajputs were ones who thwarted most of attacks on India...but due to continuous pressure of attacks, they broke apart, and few villains came into picture...but finally they collaborated with Akbar...and married their daughter to him...and then with British...

last of most prominent Rajput who reached Delhi was Prithviraj chouhan, lost due to key ally of Kannuj (it's also called plains of Ganga) Mansingh, gave away...because he stole his niece...Mansingh's daughter...and this scripted the loss of 18th war with persistent Ghauri...Prithviraj won 17 times...and let Ghauri scotfree...as it had become more of chess game...

Maratha's could never cross Yamuna river...last of warriors after rajput's...Most fearsome position Maratha's gained were in time of Shivaji and Aurangzeb...and then as per rumours, he was poisoned by his own wife and son Sambhaji...

we opened up to Muslims...because we remained confined to our nation only, we never went and attacked beyond Indian Subcontinent...it was our fault and goodness too...

our Invaders were well travelled and Matured...we lost to true fighters of those times...and Mughals lost to true fighters of their times...British...last trace of Muslims lost to British was Nawab Sirajuddaula....and then British empire...

we banned our people to go abroad, because our brahmins went and became kings in other nations...

we always lost as we lost the edge because of not being proactive...and more illuminated enemy won...
from rockets to roads to innovation in construction in those times, were only led by these non native Indians only...tipu sultan to sher shah suri...

Carl_T
BRF Oldie
Posts: 2533
Joined: 24 Dec 2009 02:37
Location: anandasya sagare

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Carl_T » 20 Sep 2010 21:47

It is probably OT but since manum and ssroy have brought it up, I think it might be worth doing a comparison between the Indian and Spanish responses to Islamic empires. There are many similarities.

Lalmohan
BRF Oldie
Posts: 13262
Joined: 30 Dec 2005 18:28

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Lalmohan » 20 Sep 2010 21:51

pratyush
when civilisations are at peace without significant threats, they grow fat, lazy and complacent
and very tempting for others to attack

Rahul M
Forum Moderator
Posts: 17050
Joined: 17 Aug 2005 21:09
Location: Skies over BRFATA
Contact:

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Rahul M » 20 Sep 2010 22:09

manum, you sure do need to read a bit more. :D

In bangal people have peculiar Mangol looks because of Genghis Khan...now one can guess why...
:rotfl: :rotfl:
because of genghis khan ? :eek:
what percentage of bengal's population has mongoloid features and why can't that be explained as the contribution from the tibeto-burman people who reside there ? :wink:

most of your points are badly marred by such lack of awareness of basic facts. I'm not trying to discourage you but I suggest you read up a LOT more on these issues before forming any opinion on it.

____________________
ss_roy, you have already decided what the answer is (social conditions) and then trying to find proof for it. that is a rather reverse way of going about it isn't it ?
can't there be other explanations for lack of effective resistances ? military ones, economic ones etc ? shouldn't conclusion follow evidence ? I think an answer looking for questions would be quite misleading.
I'm sorry but I really do not find Indians to be any more traitorous than any other group of people from history, that is just the bilge that has been served to us to prove 'India is not a country'. you bring up the evidence of SE asia, yet it can be argued that many of these countries are far more willing to sacrifice their independence and becoming a poodle than we are -- hardly the mark of a fierce patriot.

manum
BRFite
Posts: 604
Joined: 07 Mar 2010 15:32
Location: still settling...
Contact:

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby manum » 20 Sep 2010 22:45

yeah may be that was silly.......but its because my friend, who is a Bengali told me so in a general conversation...that most of Mongol traces and their temples (Siliguri) and even their influence on Bengali script is traceable in Bangal...than most of India...he is a training to be linguist...while I am an architect...

But i didnt considered the other angle you said......I must go and confront him...
must go check and backup...thanks for the necessary brakes...I have read most of things in detail...but now I am talking from my memory, so it might be looking fragmented...but next time i'll try talking in serial manner...

history can be tricky...
Last edited by manum on 21 Sep 2010 07:16, edited 1 time in total.

yantra
BRFite
Posts: 185
Joined: 28 Jul 2010 03:46

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby yantra » 20 Sep 2010 23:13

It is also important to read/look-up the "right" history. Indian history, mostly as we know it, is the British version of what was documented. As we all know, there is always another side to the story and the real history is somewhere in between. Pity, successive governments in India have not made an attempt to find, revisit and project an impartial history of India, devoid of (or mostly devoid of religious/cultural/linguistic) bias.

ramana
Forum Moderator
Posts: 54822
Joined: 01 Jan 1970 05:30

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby ramana » 21 Sep 2010 00:26

Manum,
OK first of all if you want to be taken seriously no smileys please. And format your posts without those.... for it imples something more is coming. Wed ont find any after that!

ss_roy
BRFite
Posts: 286
Joined: 15 Nov 2008 21:48

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby ss_roy » 21 Sep 2010 01:35

Rahul M,

I believe that some poorly documented but major socio-cultural changes in that time span changed the mental outlook of Indians. What those changes were- I can only speculate.

Does anyone else have an explanation how a culture that was progressive, proactive, confident, interested in external interactions and fairly agnostic became an inward looking, hyper-religious and fearful culture that had no interest in evolving other than as a reaction.

Such major changes require a driver. So what was the driver?

manum,

Begalis have east-asian features because they are near east-asia. I guess it is more convenient to invoke mongol ancestry than talk about interbreeding with east-asian women and men.

Yagnasri
BRF Oldie
Posts: 9866
Joined: 29 May 2007 18:03

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Yagnasri » 21 Sep 2010 04:43

ss_roy wrote:Rahul M,

I believe that some poorly documented but major socio-cultural changes in that time span changed the mental outlook of Indians. What those changes were- I can only speculate.


We can believe and speculate what ever we want sir, but can you tell me any civilisation which suffered like ours and kept fighting on live we are ? For example Persia went down in a a very short span to Islam.

JVKrishnan
BRFite -Trainee
Posts: 18
Joined: 04 Sep 2010 22:19
Location: Maha Bharata

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby JVKrishnan » 21 Sep 2010 06:10

Narayana Rao wrote:
I believe that some poorly documented but major socio-cultural changes in that time span changed the mental outlook of Indians. What those changes were- I can only speculate.

We can believe and speculate what ever we want sir, but can you tell me any civilisation which suffered like ours and kept fighting on live we are ? For example Persia went down in a a very short span to Islam.


Rao garu,

Haven't Jews suffered? Haven't American/Native/Red Indians suffered? I think they were probably the worst suffers, exterminated by the European/Catholic onslaught!

Isin't it a +ve thing? Fighting on....... in the face of annihilation! Aren't Vietnamese a good example of this?

As you pointed out every story has sides and we naturally gravitate towards a side that appeals to our cultural conditioning......

Rahulji isin't far off when he attributes upheavals to macro socio-cultural pressures! Persia fell because not every culture ecourages (either covert or overt) to turn into mass murder machines! BTW, we also fell like them.

The problem of post-independence India is we still haven't erased the European expression of our culture! We may be an independent nation, but in terms of "nationalism" we are bankrupt. This was/is the thrust of Adi Sankara & his disciples, Kautilya & Maurya, Sant Ramdas & Sivaji, Ramakrishna & Vivekananda(to name a few), spiritual nationalism and they achieved it, then came Gandhi and coalesced us into a mass. In fact, our culture is full of such incidents, Viswamitra & Rama, Krishna & Arjuna.

If only we care to relook at our culture from different dimensions we will come to see how our vedas, puranas, tantras & itihasas have given us deep insight into our cultural ethos!

Our constitutional writers(brain washed by Catholic rubbish) made blunders of cutting out our spiritualism from it! We just licked up whatever rubbish they thrust on us. Sant Ramdas & Sivaji just like Krishna & Arjuna are a great examples of spiritualism & nationalism coming together.

Were our constitutional writers wrong? No! They worked with whatever were the existing conditions! I think there is a wave coming where spiritualism & nationalism will be revived that IMHO will the true rise of Bharata.

best regards

manum
BRFite
Posts: 604
Joined: 07 Mar 2010 15:32
Location: still settling...
Contact:

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby manum » 21 Sep 2010 08:36

I believe that some poorly documented but major socio-cultural changes in that time span changed the mental outlook of Indians. What those changes were- I can only speculate.

Does anyone else have an explanation how a culture that was progressive, proactive, confident, interested in external interactions and fairly agnostic became an inward looking, hyper-religious and fearful culture that had no interest in evolving other than as a reaction.

Such major changes require a driver. So what was the driver?


For through long ages India has been a place of trade. The splendors of King Solomon came from out the East. He must have traded with India when he built great ships and sent "his shipmen that had knowledge of the sea"
But at length, in 327 B.C., the great Greek conqueror Alexander found his way there. Having subdued Syria, Egypt, and Persia, he next marched to invade the unknown land of gold.

The part of India which Alexander invaded is called the Punjab, or land of the five rivers. At that time it was ruled by a king called Porus.
At length Alexander reached the city of Lahore and marched on to the banks of the river Sutlej beyond. He was eager to reach the holy river Ganges and conquer the people there. But his men had grown weary of the hardships of the way, weary of fighting under the burning suns or torrent rains of India, and they begged him to go no further. So, greatly against his will, Alexander turned back.
Then there is history of King of Magadh...or Patliputra...which is Current time Patna in Bihar...being overthrown by Chandragupta Maurya...and Chanakya, who introduced Arthasashtra at the same time....being first such rulebook, which lead to Unison of whole Indian empire...
This was time of Glory...but slowly Chandragupta grew weary of burden of being king...he was First king of Maurya empire...
he ruled in period of 322–298 BC...then Bindusara and Ashoka...Ashoka, who adopted Buddhism, after war of Kalinga...and gave way kingdoms, he had conquered...

It was one of the world's largest empires in its time. At its greatest extent, the empire stretched to the north along the natural boundaries of the Himalayas, and to the east stretching into what is now Assam. To the west, it probably reached beyond modern Pakistan, annexing Balochistan and much of what is now Afghanistan, including the modern Herat and Kandahar provinces. The Empire was expanded into India's central and southern regions by the emperors Chandragupta and Bindusara, but it excluded a small portion of unexplored tribal and forested regions near Kalinga (modern Orissa). Its decline began 60 years after Ashoka's rule ended, and it dissolved in 185 BC with the foundation of the Sunga Dynasty in Magadha.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurya_Empire

this all I said, because its been discounted from our quotes, but these were our golden times in trade, socially and as a whole...

Later, the Mauryan Empire ended and the Gupta Empire began. The capital of the Gupta Empire remained Pataliputra (patna), in Magadha.


Chandragupta (319 - 335 A.D): Chandragupta (not to be confused with Chandragupta Maurya) was a very powerful Gupta ruler who waged many battles to attain his title.... He married Kumaradevi after which the Gupta dynasty came into eminence. He assumed the title of Maharajadiraja, which means king of kings.

Samudragupta (335 - 375 A.D): Samudragupta was the son and successor of Chandragupta. Samudragupta was popularly known as the "Indian Napoleon" as he conquered many territories without making much of an effort. It is said that after Emperor Ashoka, the empire of Samudragupta was the supreme. The coins found in excavation reveal much information about his empire. He performed the Asvamedha Yagna and gained much fame and power. During his reign, many great discoveries and advancements were made in different fields like astronomy, mathematics, medicine, etc.

Chandragupta II (375 - 414 A.D): Also known by the name of Vikramaditya, Chandragupta II was chosen by his father as the successor and the future ruler. Chandragupta II was an able ruler and a great conqueror. His conquest of the peninsula of Saurashtra via the Arabian Sea is considered to be one of his greatest military successes. With the annexation of Saurashtra and Malwa, he opened up sea ports to facilitate trade and commerce. His capital city was Pataliputra.

Kumaragupta I (415 - 455 AD): Kumaragupta ruled for forty years and he was considered to be one of the most powerful rulers of the Gupta Period. He was known by different names such as, Shri Mahendra, Ajita Mahendra, Simha Mahendra, Asvamedha Mahendra, Mahendra Karma, etc. During his reign, the whole of India was united as one single entity. Though it was secular and people had their own thoughts and beliefs, yet they remained united and intact in any adversity. This was proved when the subjects drove out the Hunas from the kingdom after the death of Kumaragupta.

Skandagupta (455 - 467 A.D): Most historic scripts propound that Skandagupta was the ruler after Kumaragupta, though there are some theories that also mention Purugupta, Kumaragupta - II, etc. Skandagupta was a very powerful conqueror and is considered to be at par with God Indra. His empire included the whole of North India from west to east and the peninsular regions of Gujarat.


The high points of this cultural creativity are magnificent architectures, sculptures and paintings. The Gupta period produced scholars such as Kalidasa, Aryabhata, Varahamihira, Vishnu Sharma, Vatsyayana and Prashastapada who made great advancements in many academic fields. Science and political administration reached new heights during the Gupta era. Strong trade ties also made the region an important cultural center and set the region up as a base that would influence nearby kingdoms and regions in Burma, Sri Lanka, Malay Archipelago and Indochina.


after decline of Gupta dynasty, kingdom again got divided into many smaller kings...and Afghanistan came under Islamic rule...i.e. 10th century...

In the 10th century Turks from central Asia conquered Afghanistan. Under their ruler Mahmud 971-1030 they conquered Punjab. He led raids deep into India and plundered temples. The Turks returned in 1191, this time as conquerors not raiders. They were led by Sultan Muhammad. He was defeated in 1191 at the battle of Tarain but he returned the following year. This time he prevailed. The Turks were able to conquer large parts of Northern India and they created a powerful state - the Delhi Sultanate

THE DEHLI SULTANATE

Under the Sultans Qutubuddin (the qutub complex in Delhi) 1206-1211 and Iltumish 1211-1236 the Sultanate flourished. However Iltumish was succeeded by his daughter Raziyyat. She reigned for only 3 years before she was deposed and later murdered. The Sultanate reached a peak under Alauddin 1296-1316. In 1298 he conquered Gurjarat. In 1309 he invaded Southern India. He looted southern cities and forced rulers there to submit to him and become vassals.

Meanwhile a new threat came from the North - the Mongols. In 1296-97 they raided Northwest India. The Mongols returned in 1299. This time they penetrated as far as Delhi then, like a swarm of locusts they disappeared. The Mongols returned in 1306 but this time they were repulsed.

Muhammad Tughluq 1324-1351 extended the Sultanate still further. He decided he wanted a new, more central capital and he moved it to Daulatabad. However he was later forced to move his capital back to Delhi. The Sultanate of Delhi declined rapidly in the late 14th century.

The final blow came in 1498 when Timurlane, a descendent of Genghis Khan sacked Delhi and massacred many of the inhabitants. In the early 15th century independent Sultanates appeared and the Delhi Sultanate became one of several. Under Sultans Bhalul 1451-1489 and Sikander Lohdi 1489-1517 Delhi revived to a certain extent but it never regained its former importance. Meanwhile another empire arose in the South - the Vijayangar.

THE VIJAYANGAR

The Vijayangar Empire was founded by 2 brothers, Harihara and Bukka. According to legend they were officers of Muhammad Tughluq. They were sent to crush a rebellion in the South. Instead they broke away and founded their own kingdom. Harihara was crowned king in 1346. His brother Bukka I ruled after him, 1357-1377. The Vijayanagar Empire is named after its capital city (Its name means city of victory). The rulers of Vijayanager gradually conquered more and more territory and the empire reached a peak early in the 16th century. However in 1564 Vijayngar was utterly defeated in battle. By then a new empire had arisen - the Mughals.


this is a compilation...which will give a brief idea of Indian rulers...and how Indian society kept on getting worked up, there were Golden era's in between for elongated periods, longing more than the history we quote...

the biggest Gap that happened in India was....from Turks to mughals to British....i.e. almost 800 years, we lived under foreign invasion relentlessly...what do you think, would have happened...

from turks to Mughals to British...till 1947...in between Portuguese also came...whom British defeated...Goa is an example...

so there is no point asking obvious questions...Indian society has gone under metamorphosis, within these 800 years...
it'll take time for us to regain what Gupta empire had gained...

even history of USA of being superpower just goes hardly for 50-60 years...so if we gain the lost glory, in our lifetime...we must consider ourselves lucky, isn't it...but this is how i am seeing...

Rahul M
Forum Moderator
Posts: 17050
Joined: 17 Aug 2005 21:09
Location: Skies over BRFATA
Contact:

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Rahul M » 21 Sep 2010 10:37

manum, the actual history is far too complex for such sweeping generalisations. I would strongly suggest you spend some time at this blog. http://horsesandswords.blogspot.com use the search function to find a topic of your choice. start with this perhaps ? http://horsesandswords.blogspot.com/200 ... clans.html
when we make statements like "we lived under foreign invasion relentlessly" we ignore that almost alone among civilizations we have survived mostly intact. the persian civilization of the achaeminids and the sassanids is no more, neither is the egyptian one. there is almost no trace of the hellenic civilization in turkey, yet the Indian civilization has survived all those onslaughts well into the 20th century. that didn't happen without 1300 years (count from 7th century when the first invasions took place) of near continuous resistance.

the fact remains that while most other places rolled over under muslim arab onslaught, we didn't. what finally broke through to India was the superpower of the day, with a military system that few had answer to, that of the mongols. arab, persian, european and chinese all gave away in front of the mongol military machine. it's little wonder that in spite of strong resistances (in fact, probably the strongest) the Indian ones did as well.

Rahul M,

I believe that some poorly documented but major socio-cultural changes in that time span changed the mental outlook of Indians. What those changes were- I can only speculate.

Does anyone else have an explanation how a culture that was progressive, proactive, confident, interested in external interactions and fairly agnostic became an inward looking, hyper-religious and fearful culture that had no interest in evolving other than as a reaction.

Such major changes require a driver. So what was the driver?

the crux of the problem is that there is absolutely nothing to show that the post-gupta period was anything but as progressive and creative as the periods that preceeded it. if you want I can quote brilliant treatises on architecture, classical music, mathematics, literature from this period to bolster my point. last but not the least, the very agnostic spiritualism you speak of, most of those were created in this period.
the symptoms that you describe can be all dated to post muslim rule (even then there were many pockets of excellence), which means it is a consequence rather than a cause that led to foreign rule.

our communist historians have been trying to do this for a long time now, i.e trying to show that Indians were a decadent incompetent lot fit only to be slaves of invaders but in spite of 50+ years of effort they haven't met with much success. if anything, with every passing day new evidence crops up that makes their (and your) thesis more untenable.
to give one example, the post gupta period was long billed as a somewhat dark age of ancient India, where external trade plummeted and formation and expansion of cities came to a standstill. that thesis has been conclusively blown away by the authoritative work by adhir chakravarti. (urban development in ancient India - asiatic society press)

p.s this thread is intended for military discussion and not general history for which there are threads in the general discussion forum. I realise I am guilty of this too ! :oops:
so people, if your reply doesn't have any relation to historical military affairs please post your answers in the history and archeology thread in GDF.

manum
BRFite
Posts: 604
Joined: 07 Mar 2010 15:32
Location: still settling...
Contact:

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby manum » 21 Sep 2010 10:40

manum, the actual history is far too complex for such sweeping generalisations.


I agree...

Yagnasri
BRF Oldie
Posts: 9866
Joined: 29 May 2007 18:03

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Yagnasri » 21 Sep 2010 14:42

The phenomenon of having few empires in our History is due to our social, economic and cultural conditions. The main reason for creation of most of the empires is the requirement to loot other so that the ruling group can live great. Major imperial powers in the History like Mongols, Rome, UK, France, are dependent on the looting others for their wealth. Even Islamic invasion has the looting aspect in it along with Jihad which itself is for loot. The rare exception is Russia which has invaded barbarian lands to keep them as a buffer or prevent them from invading Russia.

Indian political system even in old days is bottom strong with most of the village’s towns governing themselves without any outside or even any Royal intervention. What ever our leftist friends say the Hindu way of economic system is very near to free market concept of today. Though King had commercial activities the business people and the artisans also have full freedom in caring out their work with little restrictions from the Kings. The economic activity went on with little interference from the state power. Good production base and free trading activity within the nation was open. Even in war killing and looting the artisans, farmers etc are unthinkable to Indian kings. With wealth all around there was little reasons to invade other places just for looting sake. Wars that took place are therefore more ritualistic and not generally aimed at destroying other people. We will not find massacres taking place in any war between Indian kings.

Lalmohan
BRF Oldie
Posts: 13262
Joined: 30 Dec 2005 18:28

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Lalmohan » 21 Sep 2010 14:44

narayana-ji: tsarist russia's expansion into CA and FE was for loot as far as i can tell - plus land grab (esp FE)
pre that period, you are entirely right, it was punitive and pre-emptive

Sanku
BRF Oldie
Posts: 12526
Joined: 23 Aug 2007 15:57
Location: Naaahhhh

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Sanku » 21 Sep 2010 15:45

Singha wrote:I think a constant pressure of moderate war/impending war is probably when innovation is high. too much war is destruction, too little is stagnation. in the european surge they were facing population pressure, periodic famines, intra-mural wars and rise of new industries....they had to go out and grab what they could and seek advantages against many similar peer powers.


This I think is the key, Military innovation happens in a narrow zone between total war and total peace. That is probably why very few civilizations have shown continuous long term military innovation.

Innovation also happens for most cultures when they interact with a hitherto unknown civilization.

It is usually a flash in pan type phenomena -- a civilization finds one or two critical advantages, leverages it, and soon enough uses that leverage to get into a situation where innovation again becomes unprofitable/difficult to do.

+ Technological innovations are a small part of military success, it is usually driven more by population and other geo-political dynamics (including interaction with new cultures)

ramana
Forum Moderator
Posts: 54822
Joined: 01 Jan 1970 05:30

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby ramana » 21 Sep 2010 22:56

Narayana Rao garu, Western empires are built on the core exploiting the periphery. All activity is to extract the max surplus to prop up the capital city. India was the British Empire periphery. One way of looking at Indian independence was India was tired of contributing to the Britsh Empire and wanted out. So eventually the periphery gets disaffected and colludes with the foreigner and brings about collapse.

Indian kingdoms prosperity is due to trade or vanjijyam. And prosperity is based on trade flows. So we see rise and declines of Indians empires with ebb and flow of trade.

America realised after WWII that taking over the trading system from the exhausted British would enable them to have a new Empire without the over reach. This takeover they couldnt do till mid sixties. However due to lack of demographics and being too clever to know what is needed in a trading empire they overspent militarily and got into the 2008 collapse.

svinayak
BRF Oldie
Posts: 14223
Joined: 09 Feb 1999 12:31

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby svinayak » 21 Sep 2010 23:24

ramana wrote:America realised after WWII that taking over the trading system from the exhausted British would enable them to have a new Empire without the over reach. This takeover they couldnt do till mid sixties. However due to lack of demographics and being too clever to know what is needed in a trading empire they overspent militarily and got into the 2008 collapse.

Trading also requires knowing other people and culture. Since they are an island from the asian and african landmass they did not have the demographics to understand the cultures the way British did over 300 years.
They tried a new system to spread their own culture - evangelism so that they can create a permanent system of global trade. There is a deep backlash against this system and we are yet to see the final results.

svinayak
BRF Oldie
Posts: 14223
Joined: 09 Feb 1999 12:31

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby svinayak » 21 Sep 2010 23:39

Narayana Rao wrote:The phenomenon of having few empires in our History is due to our social, economic and cultural conditions. The main reason for creation of most of the empires is the requirement to loot other so that the ruling group can live great. Major imperial powers in the History like Mongols, Rome, UK, France, are dependent on the looting others for their wealth. Even Islamic invasion has the looting aspect in it along with Jihad which itself is for loot. The rare exception is Russia which has invaded barbarian lands to keep them as a buffer or prevent them from invading Russia.

Controlling the access to our system, geo graphy and protecting our knowledge system is the key to long lasting empires. We see that throughout the history Indians did not control the access to the region and allowed others to settle and do social engineering. Even now this is being allowed.

ss_roy
BRFite
Posts: 286
Joined: 15 Nov 2008 21:48

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby ss_roy » 23 Sep 2010 05:41

Let me, once again, ask a simple question-

Why did Indians not develop gunpowder making and gunpowder based weapons though they had all the material, manpower, technology AND motivation to do so?

Remember that gunpowder based weapons became complex only after development of 'smokeless' propellants (nitro- based) and the second phase of the industrial revolution (1870-1880s). Until the 1860s even top-of-the-line cannons in western armies were pretty basic as in BASIC.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Field_artillery_in_the_American_Civil_War

Indians do not lack the ability to ready, write, observe.. heck they could have just copied the new designs. But they did not.. WHY?

On a further note- Why did the Maratha Empire (under the peshwas) never copy and mass produce muskets, even though they had every opportunity and reason to do so? They had the money to bribe, exposure to western weapons and the incentive to do so.

Would using them on a large scale (80-120k pieces) have changed the outcome of Panipat III? Who knows?

Murugan
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4191
Joined: 03 Oct 2002 11:31
Location: Smoking Piskobidis

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Murugan » 23 Sep 2010 10:18

manum wrote:if we study the history of Mumbai, original natives of Mumbai are Koli fisherman and Shivaji then ruled around Pune, as Maratha, Mumbai was an obsolete island...where no one lived except these fisherman, and there were rumors that there is something in the air, that everyone dies in Mumbai...

then the second occupants who came to Mumbai were these Zoroastrian's (parasi's in popular term) expelled from Iran...whom the king of Gujarat gave pass to Mumbai...as they were not allowed to live in Gujarat...and they settled in Mumbai...

...

and then came the British who came as East India company, in time of Shivaji and Aurangzeb, who realized people die in Mumbai because, Fishermen burry the fishes in roots of coconut trees and it leads to a infection being spread...and they banned this practice...

...

PS...I am trying to establish some links if you see...please don't scold me...soon i'll be bang on wars...but i am also interested in few things that came along with it...


True information about Mumbai and Adjacent Areas:

First of all Mumbai was not an Island but group of Islands and many of them were never obsolete.

Isle of Bombay, Colaba, Old Woman's Island (Little Colaba), Mahim, Mazagaon, Parel, Worli


1)
Sopara - 30-40 Kms north of today's Mumbai was a flourishing port in the BC era. A road from sopara used to pass by Borivali (Near kanheri caves in the Sanjay Gandhi National Park) to connect to cities of today's MP. The natives are and were not just Kolis. In 1343 these islands were part of Gujarat Sultanate.

2)
Vasai 30 kms north of mumbai was a major trading place. Famous for trading of spice, timber and horses. Before the Portuguese came Sultan Bahadur Shah (1526 to 1537) built a fort in vasai after destroying the city. In and after 1534 Portugues burnt vasai twice, destryoed fort and mosques built by Bahadurshah. Occupied these islands including vasai. By this time 20 km north of today's mumbai was a cosmopolitan city of that time.

3)
A british named Thomas Roe was at the court of Jahangir 1615-18 sought protection for british business at Surat. For the first time official protection was given to Bhikharis of Britain.

4)
In 1661 the seven Bombay islets were ceded to Britain as part of the dowry of Catherine of Bragança to King Charles II of England

5) Chimaji Appa in 1739 raided Portuguese at Vasai and occupied the vasai fort and adjacent areas. Portuguese fled with whateve they could. Before that he captured Versova Fort near Malad in Mumbai (Madh Island).

6) Vasai was lost to British.

About Parsis - their mother tongue is gujarati. How it is possible if they were not allowed to stay in Gujarat?

Read this:

The Qissa has little to say about the events that followed the establishment of Sanjan, and restricts itself to a brief note on the establishment of the "Fire of Victory" (Middle Persian: Atash Bahram) at Sanjan and its subsequent move to Navsari. According to Dhalla, the next several centuries were "full of hardships" (sic) before Zoroastrianism "gained a real foothold in India and secured for its adherents some means of livelihood in this new country of their adoption" (Dhalla 1938, p. 447).

Two centuries after their landing, the Parsis began to settle in other parts of Gujarat, which led to "difficulties in defining the limits of priestly jurisdiction." (Kulke 1978, p. 29) These problems were resolved by 1290 through the division of Gujarat into five panthaks (districts), each under the jurisdiction of one priestly family and their descendants. (Continuing disputes over the jurisdiction over the Atash Bahram led to the fire being moved to Udvada in 1742, where jurisdiction is today shared in rotation between the five panthak families).

These amply proves that upto 1742 they were staying only in Gujarat.

More about Mumbai and the Rulers of Mumbai

[edit] Early history

Kanheri Caves served as a centre of Buddhism in Western India during ancient timesMumbai is built on what was once an archipelago of seven islands: Bombay Island, Parel, Mazagaon, Mahim, Colaba, Worli, and Old Woman's Island (also known as Little Colaba). Pleistocene sediments found along the coastal areas around Kandivali in northern Mumbai by archaeologist Todd in 1939 suggest that these islands were inhabited since the Stone Age.

In the third century BCE, the islands formed part of the Maurya Empire, during its expansion in the south, ruled by the Buddhist emperor, Ashoka of Magadha. The Kanheri Caves in Borivali were excavated in the mid-third century BCE, and served as an important centre of Buddhism in Western India during ancient times. The city then was known as Heptanesia (Ancient Greek: A Cluster of Seven Islands) to the Greek geographer Ptolemy in 150 CE.

Between the second century BCE and ninth century CE, the islands came under the control of successive indigenous dynasties: Satavahanas, Western Kshatrapas, Abhiras, Vakatakas, Kalachuris, Konkan Mauryas, Chalukyas and Rashtrakutas, before being ruled by the Silhara dynasty from 810 to 1260. Some of the oldest edifices in the city built during this period are, Jogeshwari Caves (between 520 to 525), Elephanta Caves (between the sixth to seventh century), Walkeshwar Temple (10th century), and Banganga Tank (12th century).

King Bhimdev founded his kingdom in the region in the late 13th century, and established his capital in Mahikawati (present day Mahim). The Pathare Prabhus, one of the earliest known settlers of the city, were brought to Mahikawati from Saurashtra in Gujarat around 1298 by Bhimdev.

{Amply proves that Mumbai was not in any case an obsolete island or a group of islands}

ramana
Forum Moderator
Posts: 54822
Joined: 01 Jan 1970 05:30

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby ramana » 23 Sep 2010 23:34

I think he ment desolate ie uninhabited and not obsolete.

bhavin
BRFite
Posts: 101
Joined: 28 Sep 2005 23:04
Location: A point in three dimensional space

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby bhavin » 24 Sep 2010 02:36

manum wrote:.........

then the second occupants who came to Mumbai were these Zoroastrian's (parasi's in popular term) expelled from Iran...whom the king of Gujarat gave pass to Mumbai...as they were not allowed to live in Gujarat...and they settled in Mumbai...

[...

Manum - Just to point out that Parsis did indeed settle down in Gujarat and what you have written above is incorrect. It is one of the reasons why Parsis speak Gujarati in their own inimitable style. A look at the history of Parsis in Wiki would provide you with the necessary data.

Airavat
BRF Oldie
Posts: 2326
Joined: 29 Jul 2003 11:31
Location: dishum-bishum
Contact:

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Airavat » 04 Oct 2010 09:51

Firearms with Indian powers during 1857
Further, irrespective of the weakness of the British garrison, the country was much more powerful to resist us than is the case at present. To begin with, every man was armed, and the rude blunderbuss or musket which he carried was a weapon rather more efficient than that with which the European was armed. It was not till the sepoy understood the effect of the Menai rifle later on in the struggle that he realised how circumstances had changed.

The artillery, again, since the time of the Mughals, had been a dominant factor in Oriental warfare, and at this time our guns were largely in the hands of native artillerymen, while every petty Raja had a park of ordnance nearly as good as our own. All this has been changed by the introduction of rifled guns, all in the charge of British troops, and of breech-loading rifles, for which the native cannot improvise ammunition. Still more dangerous at the time was the lack of railways and telegraphs, which prevented concentration, and allowed mobs of rabble to sweep away our outlying stations.

Lastly, the people themselves, with the traditions of war still fresh in their minds, were much more formidable than they are now. It was not till later days that the half-savage cattle-raiding Gujar or the predatory Rajput of the western districts was tamed and induced by the spread of Canal irrigation to turn his sword into a ploughshare, or the little Oudh Raja learned that his ill-manned guns and ragged regiment of matchlock-men were unfit to face regular troops.
Last edited by Airavat on 05 Oct 2010 03:34, edited 1 time in total.

jambudvipa
BRFite
Posts: 321
Joined: 19 Feb 2010 18:41

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby jambudvipa » 04 Oct 2010 14:24

Few days back I got my grubby paws on a 1929 english translation of Idn Battuta's travels in Asia/Africa by HAR Gibbs.Book is in excellent condition for its age.
I am still reading thru but this point stood out for me.I have always wondered what the postal system of the sultanate was like which enabled them to receive comms very quickly for those times.
Ibn Batt says the sultans postal service was of two types:

1. Mounted couriers on horses.Relays every 4 miles.

2.On foot:- Every third of a mile there was an village outside which three pavilions in which runners sat ready to move off.Each runner had a staff (yard and half long) with bells at the top.When a runner ran he had the message in he fingers of the free hand and the rod in the other.The bells alerted the men sitting in the next village of the runners approach and someone in the next pavilion took over the message.
As per IB this was faster than mounted couriers.Fruits and criminals were also transported in this way to the sultan.This seems to have been only used for the sultans personal needs/military comms/government communication.
I was curious to know of what type of postal system existed as there are references to the postal system of the turks being disrupted by the Hindus in their invasion down south.
Im sure there would have been something comparable amongst the Hindu kingdoms.Can anyone shed light on that?

ramana
Forum Moderator
Posts: 54822
Joined: 01 Jan 1970 05:30

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby ramana » 11 Oct 2010 20:08

Book Review:

Tracing India’s military journey
October 11, 2010 8:21:40 PM

The Rise of Indian Military Power
Author: GD Bakshi
Publisher: Knowledge World
Price: 780


The book identifies three ‘revolutions’ in military affairs, and says the country awaits the fourth one, writes Anil Bhat

Since Independence, coming after 1,000 years of chaos and anarchy, India has seen four conventional wars. And the fifth — an asymmetric one of proxy by export of terrorism — has been on since the 1980s.

This book, GD Bakshi’s 12th, is a path-breaker, attempting probably a first scientific analysis of the Indian military history in terms of a series of “Revolutions in Military Affairs” (RMA) that had profound implications in the socio-political sphere. The author identifies three critical RMAs that changed the course of Indian history.

The first RMA was engendered by the Mauryans who used war elephants en masse to generate “shock and awe”. This, for the first time, helped unite almost the entire subcontinent into a highly centralised and prosperous empire.

The Mughals under Babar introduced the Second RMA in South Asia. The Mughal RMA was based on an intelligent combination of field artillery, flintlock muskets and horse- based archers. The new explosive paradigm of warfare terrified the Indian war-elephants and panicked them to a degree that made them a liability on the battlefield. The Mughals, thus, unified India for the second time into a magnificent empire that at one stage was generating 40 per cent of the world’s gross domestic product.

The British introduced the third RMA by raising well-drilled infantry regiments that could shoot collectively in a rhythm. An infantry battalion could thus generate sustained rates of fire of a thousand shots a minute. This high volume of fire decimated the Mughal-style cavalry. The third RMA helped emerge the “Third Empire of India”. The British unified the subcontinent for the third time.

The focus of this book, however, is not pre-Independence India, but the post-1947 period of the Indian military history. It tries to answer some pertinent questions: Is there an Indian strategic culture? Is there an Indian way of fighting warfare?

Western scholars have opined that India lacked a strategic culture. The author disagrees. Kautilya’s Arthashastra, he feels, constitutes the essence of an Indian strategic culture resurfacing unconsciously whenever India was united. This military culture is premised upon huge armed forces and attrition, besides emphasising on covert operations and information dominance. This Kautilyan paradigm of warfare resurfaced unconsciously in the liberation of Bangladesh in the 1971 war, which resulted in a resounding Indian victory over Pakistan. The shock and awe generated by the Indian Air Force’s complete domination of the skies over Bangladesh paved the way for a classic ‘blitzkrieg’ that (for the first time after the Second World War) created a new nation state with the force of arms. In just 14 days, India turned into a major regional power.

Since the Afghan jihad, the situation in South Asia has taken a turn for worse. Non-state actors are busy as never before. And, to bolster them, there is Pakistan, which has achieved nuclear and conventional military parity with India with the help of China and the US. Islamabad uses this parity to wage a relentless asymmetric war against India by using Islamist terrorists.

India is set to become a major economic power. It must translate this potential into usable military power to deter its adversaries from any provocative adventurism. India will have to field dominant war-fighting capabilities by ushering in the fourth RMA, based on air and water superiority.

India’s Defence Ministry has admitted in its annual reports that diplomacy remains the country’s chosen means of dealing with challenges, but that effective diplomacy has to be backed by credible military power. Delhi’s strategic and security interests require a mix of land-based, maritime and air capabilities with minimum credible deterrent to thwart the use of nuclear weapons against it.

This book must be read by all, particularly those interested in dealing with the issue of national security.

--The reviewer is editor, WordSword Features & Media

Pulikeshi
BRFite
Posts: 1513
Joined: 31 Oct 2002 12:31
Location: Badami

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Pulikeshi » 11 Oct 2010 22:52

^ Not a big deal, but my contrariness has been slipping through all day! :mrgreen:

Mauryans who used war elephants en masse to generate “shock and awe”


Pururava (Porus) used elephants against the Alexandra with contested results.

ParGha
BRFite
Posts: 944
Joined: 20 Jul 2006 06:01

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby ParGha » 12 Oct 2010 18:06

The three RMAs in the Euro-Centric narrative are much more generalized description of what happened in Europe (and some of which was transplanted onto much of the world). It may be summarized as mass to flexible lines, flexible lines to manoeuver, and manoeuver to "what"? By contrast, what the book seems to talk about are politico-military events in India. Let us face it, at the strategic level Indians (or anyone ruling India) have been just too conservative to try anything revolutionary so far. At tactical and operational levels, innovations abound; but it hasnt yet translated to strategic revolution. Methinks that the asymmetrical warfare problem is a red herring; once the gloves come off it won't be a problem at all. The real problem are the forces behind the asymmetric warfare. The next RMA would come when manoeuver is made irrelavent.

Rahul M
Forum Moderator
Posts: 17050
Joined: 17 Aug 2005 21:09
Location: Skies over BRFATA
Contact:

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Rahul M » 12 Oct 2010 19:01

Pulikeshi wrote:^ Not a big deal, but my contrariness has been slipping through all day! :mrgreen:

Mauryans who used war elephants en masse to generate “shock and awe”


Pururava (Porus) used elephants against the Alexandra with contested results.

hardly 'contested'. the 80 odd elephants had all but demolished his famed sarissa armed heavy infantry, the phalanx. if not for his heavy cavalry which hugely outnumbered puru's cavalry, he would have surely lost the battle (if at all he did win it, which is again, debatable).
the importance of elephants is easily seen by the enthusiasm for all who could get hold of some, most importantly alexander's successors, the diadochi and later even the carthiginians, who were introduced to Indian elephants by the ptolemy greeks and later employed Indian mahouts to raise their own elephant corps.
later the greek king pyrrhus (the very same who gave rise to the name pyrrhic victory) had a handful of Indian elephants and these were his prized possessions in his wars against the early romans.

coming to Indian innovation in military, one must mention the stirrup, which was first used in India around 500 BC (evidence from artwork at sanchi), some 500 years before it was used elsewhere and 1200 years before it appeared in europe.
the scythed chariot, immortalized by the movie ben hur was invented in the reign of ajatshatru of magadha with his capital at rajgriha, modern rajgir. he used two fear inducing weapons, the scythed chariot and a catapult capable of hurling large rocks (again about 300 years before any similar machine showed up anywhere else in the world) in his campaign against the mighty lichchavi republic (source- Pali Canon).
from there the use of scythed chariots spread to persia where it was used by darius against the macedonians at gaugamela, without much success. the baktrians continued to use it however.
incidentally, legend says he chose a village at the confluence of two rivers for his main encampment in the campaign against the lichchavis. the village was then called pataligam (gama--> gram) which later became the metropolis of pataliputra.

Pulikeshi
BRFite
Posts: 1513
Joined: 31 Oct 2002 12:31
Location: Badami

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Pulikeshi » 13 Oct 2010 20:24

Hi Rahul,

Thanks for your insight. I miss typed "used elephants against the Alexandra with contested results."

What I meant was with contested victory for either party.
I see that there is logic in how elephants took the fancy of the world for a while....

Sanku
BRF Oldie
Posts: 12526
Joined: 23 Aug 2007 15:57
Location: Naaahhhh

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Sanku » 18 Oct 2010 12:03

http://www.hindu.com/lr/2010/09/05/stor ... 220600.htm

The book, for the first time, brings out the translations of letters written by Tatya Tope that amply indicate the efforts of Tatya and Nana Sahib in setting up a parallel government, a tangible oppositional stance that would go a long way in asserting the drive for independence. Corroborated with maps and diagrams, this book gives concrete proof of the many wars won against the British, which have been erroneously misrepresented by English historians. Innumerable campaigns led by Tatya Tope finally forced the English to realise that certain concession had to be given, a move that would finally bring the freedom struggle closer to its dreams.

tsarkar
BRF Oldie
Posts: 3263
Joined: 08 May 2006 13:44
Location: mumbai

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby tsarkar » 18 Oct 2010 17:11

Elephants, when properly managed, were force multipliers and played a pivotal role in battle. Elephants could blunt and scatter cavalry charges. Refer below for effective use of elephants -

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Bridge

I speculate that since there are no native elephant populations in Persia, these probably came from India and were trained and manned by Indians.

Surya
BRF Oldie
Posts: 5034
Joined: 05 Mar 2001 12:31

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby Surya » 18 Oct 2010 18:09

Elephants in armies of Persia, Ghazni were from India and manned by Indians per Persian writings.

Question I have is - who were these Indians?? mercenaries?? captured troopers who were turned??? Did they then stay on in those regions ??

ParGha
BRFite
Posts: 944
Joined: 20 Jul 2006 06:01

Re: Historical Battles in Ancient & Medieval Bharat

Postby ParGha » 18 Oct 2010 19:15

Surya wrote:Elephants in armies of Persia, Ghazni were from India and manned by Indians per Persian writings.

Question I have is - who were these Indians?? mercenaries?? captured troopers who were turned??? Did they then stay on in those regions ??


Indians had long served in Persian armies as mercenaries since time of Cyrus the Great. Historically they were recruited for three roles - foot archers (with the Indian long bow), war-dog handlers (with Indian mastiffs), and as elephant-handlers (mahouts with Indian elephants). It was useful for the Persian kings to have such contingents of foreign mercenaries from beyond their realms (also Greek hoplites, Nubian scouts, Scythian cavalry), as they were fully loyal to their pay masters only - not to satraps, nor to possible insurgencies in the realm. The lower ranks came and went with their own families, but the higher officers were often expected to marry according to royal decrees - sometimes daughters of local officials, sometimes daughters of other foreign commanders (they never settled, they had to move with their troops).


Return to “Military Issues & History Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Balaji and 90 guests