Prehistory 101 B


Around three and a half thousand years ago the Indian subcontinent entered the Iron age. Population of the region by then was on its way to reach the fifty million mark, thanks to the fertile soil and sustaining climate. However, by today’s standard, it was still very thinly populated, with a handful of settlements separated by wide rivers in spate and impenetrable forest ranges. These settlements grew into sixteen major polities, called Mahajanapadas in various native literatures. Later, the twentieth century archeologists collectively termed these as the Vedic Civilization.

By sixth century BC one of these polities, Magadha, had produced the Jain philosophy through Mahavira as well as that of Buddhism through Gautama Buddha. This period worldwide witnessed a great spike in novel and horizon altering ideas from people like Thales and Confucius as well. Then in fourth century BC, Alexander, one of the greatest conquerors in…

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