website source links
bk     crHI     ht     mxfld     wikAK     wikI     wikLSLM     wikSI    wikTB     wikTI
India Go to Persia Go to Asia Go to East Asia
c.1000 VEDIC SANSKRIT of  Rigveda  is the oldest record of Indo-Aryan language. 1000 B76 9-431
c.1000 Early Buddhist and Jaina literature begins. 1000 wikI
c.1000  RIGVEDA  period of Vedic era from 1500, ends.  Later Vedic period begins until 500.  Originally transmitted orally, writing of rituals begins in Sanskrit, mostly in the Sapta Sindhu, divided into 10 Mandalas (books).  10th is later than others.  9th is all hymns dedicated to Soma.  Shows patriarchal society of farmers and herdsmen, monogamous adult marriage, normal widowhood.  Nothing about REINCARNATION V. 1000 B76 3-984 LEWH 54, Sdl 1-103, ht, mxfld, wikTI
no date:
B76 9-346
c.1000  BRAHMANAS , commentaries on the 4 Vedas, detailing performance of rituals, from 1500, end.   19 Brahmanas  are extant. 1000 B76 8-923
700 Brit
c.1000  BRAHMANAS "works of the Brahmins" , prose commentaries to Vedas, begin until 700.  Continues not the poetry, but the liturgical content of  Rigveda .  Digest of accumulated teachings illustrated by myth and legend.  Proposes hidden meanings of sacred texts. 1000 B76 17-133, WNHI 38
900 B76 II-225, KIH 26 800 CMoG2 189,
LEWH 54, MoAR 6-12
c.1000 SOUTH INDIA:  Neolithic Period ends.  Began 2500.
Bronze Age is skipped entirely.
Λ Iron Age begins.
1000 wikSI
c.1000 PAINTED GRAYWARE strata of west Ganges begins until 500.  Illiterate but technologically advanced. 1000
B76 8-910
c.1000 PAINTED GRAYWARE strata of west Ganges begins until 500. Illiterate but technologically advanced. 1000
B76 8-910
c.1000 Λ COTTON V:  Wild cotton, used in India from 3000, is supplemented by cultivated cotton. 1000
SHT 1-449
found at the site of Hallus in Karnataka 1000 wikCot
c.1000 Bronze BELL made in India. 1000 B76 14-61
c.1000 STEEL made in India by melting IRON at 1,500 degrees Centigrade and adding less than 1% carbon. 1000 mxfld
c.1000 ALCOHOL:  Hindu Ayurveda describes benefits of alcohol and consequences of intoxication including liver disease. 1000
B76 1-442
c.950 HINDUISM develops from ancient Sanskrit chants with the concept of Brahman, the Supreme Being, ruling over man and many deities.  Souls, through many  INCARNATIONS V, eventually liberated from worldly existence to achieve union with Brahman.

Λ THEOLOGY V:  Below Brahman are Brahma the creator, Vishnu the preserver and Shiva the destroyer.  Brahma is too sacred for popular rites, but Vishnu and Shiva are worshiped in hundreds of guises and forms and customs.  Vishnu has 10 forms (avatars) in which he descends to earth, including Rama of Ramayana legend, Krishna, hero of the Mahabharata, and the historical Buddha.
(See Phrygians 1200Theogony 700)
post-1000 mxfld
c.950 ARYANS now control north India. 950 bk
c.950 Gradual breakdown of Sanskrit as a spoken language begins until 750. 950 ht
c.950 BHARATA WAR, an 18 day war fought at Kurukshetra, between 2 groups of cousins (Kauravas and Pandavas) of kingdom of Kuru, for the throne of Hastinapura.  It involves several kingdoms as allies of the rival groups.  Considered important enough to take up over 1/4 of the Mahabharata. 950 wikKW
900 bk
c.900  RIGVEDA , begun 1500, begins final? recension. 900 B76 8-909
c.900 KURU KINGDOM in Ganges Valley from 1200 ends. 900 wikI     800 wikMb
c.900 VARANASI city on Ganges earliest records 900 ht
c.876 MATH V:  ZERO first evidenced as a concept.   (See China 950Babylonia 520) 876 TTS
c.850 PARSVA (Parshva) flourishes.  Originally a noble of the Kshatriya varna, renounces world at age 30 to be a monk.  Earliest Jain leader generally accepted as a historical figure. 877-777 wikPrs
700 bk
c.850 PHOENICIAN ALPHABET V introduced to India by merchants.
(See Semtic 950, Greek 950, Greek 750, Etruscan 690)
900-800 MCAW 59
c.850 PARSVA (Parshva) flourishes.  Originally a noble of the Kshatriya varna, renounces world at age 30 to be a monk.  Earliest Jain leader generally accepted as a historical figure. 877-777 wikPrs
700 bk
c.847 PARSVA (age 30) after 84 days meditation, achieves "Kevala Jnana" (perfect knowledge). 847 wikPrs, wikTJn
c.800 BAUDHAYANA, mathematician, flourishes.
Λ MATH:  Credited with calculating the value of pi.
(See China 800, zero 520, Pythagoras 520)

GEOMETRY:  Writes some  Shulba Sutras  (appendices to the Vedas):  Srauta ritual texts containing geometry related to fire-altar construction.  The only known sources of Indian mathematics from Vedic period.
"The diagonal of a square produces double the area [of the square]."   "The areas [of the squares] produced separately by the lengths of the breadth of a rectangle together equal the area [of the square] produced by the diagonal."   "This is observed in rectangles having sides 3 and 4, 12 and 5, 15 and 8, 7 and 24, 12 and 35, 15 and 36."
800 wikBau
700 aleph
800-600 wik
c.800 GANGES VALLEY:  city states develop supported by rice farming. 800 PW 15
c.800 ARYANS, in northwest India from 1550, expand southward. 800 TAWH 16
c.800  YARUVEDA  composed.  Contains  Samhita , liturgy (mantras) needed to perform Vedic sacrifices.  The  Brahmana and Shrautasutra  add info on interpretation and details of their performance. 1000-600 wikYrv
c.800 BRAHMANA period begins until 600.   Brahmanas  are a collection of texts with prose commentaries on the 4 Vedas.  They are primarily a digest incorporating facts, legends, explanation of Vedic rituals, and sometimes philosophy. 900 wikBr 800 CHI 148
c.7?? PARSVA, 23rd Tirtankara of Jainism, founder of PARSVANATHA order, proposes 4 vows:  DON'T injure life, lie, steal, own property. arbitrary: CHI 138
c.777 PARSVA, 23rd Tirtankara of Jainism, age 100, founder of PARSVANATHA order, dies. 777 wikTJn     772 CMoG2 219
250 yrs before Mahavira dies: CHI 137
c.750 Priestly Sanskrit is gradually refined until 250, taking on its classical form. 750 ht
c.700  UPANISHADS  "sittings near a teacher" begin until 500.  Beginning of philosophy and mysticism, elaborations on  Rigveda , religious and metaphysical prose in Sanskrit. 1450 ht     1000 B76 8-923
800 EoΦ 4-1, MCAW 63, TAWH 16, mxfld, trpsgr     750 bk   700 B76 8-910
600 B76 13-950, CHI 147, LEWH 54     400 B76 X-283
c.700 Early Smartism emerges from syncretic Vedic brahminic tradition. 700 ht
c.700 MAHA JANAPADAS civilization of south India begins until 300. 700 wikSI
c.700 Kingdoms of VAISALI and VIDEHA replaced by a confederacy of VRJJIS. by 700 B76 2-984
c.700 Λ REINCARNATION V (samsara) first expressed in  BRHADARANYAKA UPANISHAD  as necessary for fulfillment of karma.  A soul may escape from samsara (reincarnation) only by uniting with impersonal cosmic soul, possible thru knowledge.   "Just as a man when in the embrace of a beloved wife knows nothing within or without, so does this being, when embraced by the Supreme Self, know nothing within or without." 
A soul normally returns to Earth and is put into human or animal form.
B76 8-911, CMoG 1-82
Attributed to Uddalaka Aruni, who learned it from a Ksatriya chief.
c.700 KARMA first expressed in  Brhadaranyaka Upanishad .
A soul gets good or bad rebirth according to its works.
700 B76 8-911, CMoG 1-82
Attributed to Yajnavalkya.
c.700 Animal slaughter, forbidden in India from ?, laws relaxed. 700 TTPC
c.700  ARANYAKAS  "Books Studied in the Forest", a later development of the Brahmanas, begin until 600: Explains meanings of rituals of yogis who meditated in the woods. 800 B76 17-133 700 B76 I-477
c.684 MAGADHA Empire begins until ?. 684 wikSI
c.642 Traveler-monk XUANZANG tries to visit Ceylon, but is told by monks (possibly at Kanchipuram) that there is trouble in the kingdom, so he turns back.  This accords with the succession struggle between Aggabodhi-III Sirisanghabo, Jettha Tissa-III and Dathopa Tissa-I Hatthadpath 643-32. 642 wikLSLM
c.600 A general trend toward disillusionment with wealth and power begins in Asia. 600 CSHB 2
c.600  BRAHMANAS , prose commentaries to Vedas begun 800, end. 700 B76 II-225, 17-133
600 KIH 26, LEWH 54, MOAR 6-12, WNHI 38
c.600  ARANYAKAS  "Books Studied in the Forest", a later development of the Brahmanas, begun 700, end. 600
B76 17-133
c.600 16 Maha Janapadas (Great Kingdoms) emerge until 400.  Some of them are semi-democratic oligarchies. 700 wikSI     600 wikI, wikTI
by 500 crHI, wikI
c.600 Ajivika sect, atheistic, ascetic, deterministic naked sadhus known for fierce curses, peaks.  Continues in Mysore until 14th cen..  Adversaries of Buddha and Mahavira. 700 wikSI     600 wikI, wikTI
by 500 crHI, wikI
c.600 A horse is allowed to wander at will.  The local king claims all ground covered by it. 600 MCAW 79
c.600 ELEPHANTS used for warfare. 600 PW 16
c.600  LITERARY SANSKRIT  remains in constant form until today. 600 B76 17-133
c.600  SUTRAS  "threads" collections of aphoristic statements
Srauta Sutra:  rituals for lesser sacrifices
Grhya Sutra:  domestic rituals
Dharma Sutra:  conduct of life.
B76 8-911, bk
c.563 SIDHARTHA GAUTAMA born to Suddhodana, king of Sakyas, and his queen Mahamaya in Kapilavastu in Lumbini. 563 B76 II-342, 3-369, LEWH 54, PW 16, CSHB 8, WNHI 49, wikTB     560 B76 3-404
490BCE according to recent research wikTB
c.560 Prince Vardhamana (later called MAHAVIRA) born in Besarh to Ksatriya (warrior) caste family. trad 599 B76 11-347, wikTI
550 crHI     540 WNHI 52
c.550 HINDUISM:  Breakaway sects of ascetics arise, denying authority of Vedas and bramins, and looking to founders who claim secret knowledge. 550
B76 8-911
c.550 PURANA KASSAPA flourishes.  Teaches "non-action" whereby the body acts independently of the soul, denies any reward or punishment for good or bad acts. 550 bk
5th or 4th cen wikPKs
c.550 PAKUDHA KACCAYAYNA flourishes.  Says there are 7 eternal elements: Earth, Water, Fire, Air, Joy, Sorrow, and Life which do not interact. 550 bk
5th or 4th cen wikPKc
c.550 AJITA KESAKAMBALI flourishes.  Teaches materialism, irrelevance of morality, nonexistence of afterlife. 550 bk
6th cen: wikAK
c.550 SANJAYA BELATTHIPUTTA flourishes.  Teaches evasion of questions and problems, and suspension of judgment. 550 bk
no date: plknSB
c.550 Λ ALPHABET:   BRAHMI SCRIPT  V may have derived from Aramaic in 6th cen.  It has many local variants, suggesting earlier origin. 6-500 indeur, wss, wikBS
c.543 VIJAYA, banished from his homeland in India, arrives in Ceylon. 543 wikAK
c.543 Kingdom of Tambapanni begins in Ceylon until 505.  VIJAYA is sole king.  Vijaya dynasty begins until 205. 543 wikAK, wikLSLM, wikSI, wikVSL
c.542 SIDHARTHA GAUTAMA, minor prince of Bengal, lives easy life, marries. 542 MCAW 91
c.540 BIMBISARA becomes king of Magadha until 490.
Begins SISUNAGA Dynasty until 343.
544 HCIP 2-38, bk     543 B76 II-21, 9-349, CHI 312, LEWH 54
540 WNHI 49     537 HCAI 35
c.540 Kshatriya prince MAHAVIRA, age 30, husband & father, abandons hedonistic life to become a wandering ascetic, possibly of the Parsvanatha order.  Wears one garment over a year, then naked, total poverty, no possessions, lets insects bite him, avoids deliberately killing anything, bears ridicule and abuse, meditates, fasts. 569 B76 11-347
age 30 WNHI 52
510 MCAW 103
c.533 CYRUS-II, king of Anshan 580-30, Media 550-30, crosses Hindu-Kush Mts., receives tribute from Indus Valley cities. 538 wikTI
533 MCAW 92
c.533 SIDHARTHA GAUTAMA goes outside the palace 1st time and sees "Four Sights": an old man, an ill man, a dead man, and a holy man.  He is shocked by the 1st 3 —He did not know what age, disease, and death were—but is inspired by the holy man to give up his wealth.  He leaves his house and lives with 3 ascetics, then wanders for 6 years the forest of Kosala and south thru the kingdom of Magadha. 534 CHI 278, 312, wikTB
age 30 WNHI 49
532 bk
530 MCAW 97
528 B76 3-371
c.532 MAHAVIRA renounces the world. 532 bk
c.528 SIDHARTHA GAUTAMA sits under a Bo tree in Benares, attains "Enlightenment", has vision of what he will teach, now the BUDDHA, he goes to a deer park in Sarnath (near Varanasi), and preaches 1st sermon on 4 noble truths.  His teaching is originally intended as a supplement to the existing Vedic dharma. 537 crHI, wikI
528 B76 3-371, CHI 278, 312, TTPC, bk, wikTB
527 WNHI 50
524 MCAW 97   521 TToH
c.520 MAKKHALI GOSALA, founder of the Ajivika movement, flourishes.  Known only thru writings of his rivals: the Buddhists and Jains, which say he is an early disciple of Mahavira, who disagreed with him on reanimation.  Fatalist. 520 bk
no date: wikMG
c.520 Much of northwestern India comes under Persia until 326. 520 wikI
c.518 DARIUS-I king of Medo-Persia 522-486, Babylon 521-486 campaigns in India until 514. 518 CAH 4
c.518 PUNJAB & SIND in Gandhara area of upper Indus River annexed by Darius-I, under Persia until 326.  Land east of Indus River divided into 20 satrapies. 520 wikI     519 B76 9-348, LEWH 53     518 B76 15-287, CHI 641, WNHI 55
c.515 Greek SCYLAX of Caria, navigator under Darius-I, sent on voyage down Red Sea, explores shores of the Indian Ocean and Indus River system, establishes sea route to India. 517 CHI 641, HCIP 2-41
515 MCAw 101, lvG
500 CDCC 337
c.515 NAKSH-I-RUSTAM INSCRIPTION 12 km northwest of Persepolis mentions north Punjab as part of Darius' domain. 515 HCIP 2-41
c.508 ANANDA becomes personal attendant of Gautama Buddha. 508 bk
c.507 Sudharma Swami, fifth Ganadhar (group leader) of Mahavira, dies. 507 wikTJain
c.505 VIJAYA, raja of Ceylon from 543, ends. 505 wikAK
c.505 Sinhalese Kingdom of Tambapanni in Ceylon under Vijaya from 543 ends.  Chief Minister UPATISSA begins Kingdom of UPATISSA NUWARA until 377.  UPATISSA rules until 504. 505 wikLSLM, wikSI, wikUUN, wikVSL
c.504 UPATISSA, regent of Upatissa Nuwara in Ceylon from 505, ends.  PANDUVASDEVA (neph of Vijaya) succeeds until 474. 504 wikLSLM, wikPUN, wikUUN

India 500-331