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Gandhāra was an ancient kingdom situated in modern-day northern Pakistan, in the Peshawar
Peshawar
valley and Potohar plateau, and extending to Jalalabad
Jalalabad
district of modern-day Afghanistan. During the Achaemenid period and Hellenistic period, its capital city was Charsadda,[note 1] but later the capital city was moved to Peshawar[note 2] by the Kushan emperor Kanishka the Great
Kanishka the Great
in about AD 127. Gandhara
Gandhara
existed since the time of the Rigveda
Rigveda
(c. 1500–1200 BC),[1][2] as well as the Zoroastrian Avesta, which mentions it as Vaēkərəta, the sixth most beautiful place on earth, created by Ahura Mazda. Gandhara
Gandhara
was conquered by the Achaemenid Empire
Achaemenid Empire
in the 6th century BC. Conquered by Alexander the Great
Alexander the Great
in 327 BC, it subsequently became part of the Maurya Empire
Maurya Empire
and then the Indo-Greek Kingdom. The region was a major center for Greco-Buddhism
Greco-Buddhism
under the Indo-Greeks
Indo-Greeks
and Gandharan Buddhism
Gandharan Buddhism
under later dynasties. It was also a central location for the spread of Buddhism
Buddhism
to Central Asia and East Asia.[3] It was also a center of Bactrian Zoroastrianism
Zoroastrianism
and Hinduism.[4] Famed for its local tradition of Gandhara (Greco-Buddhist) Art, Gandhara
Gandhara
attained its height from the 1st century to the 5th century under the Kushan
Kushan
Empire. Gandhara "flourished at the crossroads of Asia," connecting trade routes and absorbing cultural influences from diverse civilizations; Buddhism thrived until 8th or 9th centuries, when Islam
Islam
first began to gain sway in the region.[5] Pockets of Buddhism
Buddhism
persisted in Pakistan's Swat valley
Swat valley
until the 11th century.[6] The Persian term Shahi
Shahi
is used by historian Al-Biruni[7] to refer to the ruling dynasty[8] that took over from the Kabul
Kabul
Shahi[9] and ruled the region during the period prior to Muslim conquests of the 10th and 11th centuries. After it was conquered by Mahmud of Ghazni
Mahmud of Ghazni
in 1001 AD, the name Gandhara
Gandhara
disappeared. During the Muslim period, the area was administered from Lahore
Lahore
or from Kabul. During Mughal times, it was an independent district which included the Kabul province.

Contents

1 Etymology 2 Geography 3 History

3.1 Stone age 3.2 Vedic Gandhara 3.3 Achaemenid
Achaemenid
Gandhara 3.4 Macedonian Gandhara 3.5 Maurya
Maurya
arrival to Gandhara 3.6 Graeco-Bactrians, Sakas, and Indo-Parthians 3.7 Kushan
Kushan
Gandhara 3.8 Hepthalite Invasion 3.9 Kabul
Kabul
Shahi 3.10 Decline

4 Rediscovery 5 Taliban
Taliban
destruction of Buddhist
Buddhist
relics 6 Language 7 Buddhism

7.1 Mahāyāna Buddhism 7.2 Buddhist
Buddhist
translators 7.3 Textual finds

8 Art 9 Timeline 10 See also 11 Notes 12 References 13 Sources 14 Further reading 15 External links

Etymology[edit] Gandhara
Gandhara
was known in Sanskrit
Sanskrit
as गन्धार gandhāra, in Avestan
Avestan
as Vaēkərəta, in Old Persian
Old Persian
as Para-upari-sena, in Chinese as 犍陀罗, and in Greek as Παροπαμισάδαι Paropamisadae. The Gandhari people are a tribe mentioned in the Rigveda, the Atharvaveda, and later Vedic texts.[10] They are recorded in the Avestan-language of Zoroastrianism
Zoroastrianism
under the name Vaēkərəta. The name Gāndhāra occurs later in the classical Sanskrit
Sanskrit
of the epics. One proposed origin of the name is from the Sanskrit
Sanskrit
word gandha, meaning "perfume" and "referring to the spices and aromatic herbs which they [the inhabitants] traded and with which they anointed themselves.".[11][12] A Persian form of the name, Gandara, appearing in the Behistun inscription of Emperor Darius I,[13] is also mentioned by Herodotus[14] in the context of the story of the Greek explorer Scylax of Caryanda, who sailed down the Indus River starting at the city of Caspatyrus in Gandara (Κασπάτυρος, πόλις Γανδαρική). Herodotus
Herodotus
records that those Iranic tribes, which were adjacent to the city of Caspatyrus and the district of Pactyïce, had customs similar to the Bactrians, and are the most warlike amongst them. These are also the people who obtain gold from the ant-hills of the adjoining desert. On the identity of Caspatyrus, there have been two opinions, one equating it with Kabul, the other with the name of Kashmir
Kashmir
(Kasyapa pur, condensed to Kaspapur as found in Hecataeus).[15] Geography[edit]

Female spouted figure, terracotta, Charsadda, Gandhara, 3rd to 1st century BC Victoria and Albert Museum

The boundaries of Gandhara
Gandhara
varied throughout history. Sometimes the Peshawar
Peshawar
Valley and Taxila
Taxila
were collectively referred to as Gandhara; sometimes the Swat Valley (Sanskrit: Suvāstu) was also included. The heart of Gandhara, however, was always the Peshawar
Peshawar
Valley. The kingdom was ruled from capitals at Kapisa (Bagram),[16] Pushkalavati (Charsadda), Taxila, Puruṣapura (Peshawar) and in its final days from Udabhandapura (Hund) on the River Indus. History[edit]

Mother Goddess (fertility divinity), possibly derived from the Indus Valley Civilization, terracotta, Sar Dheri, Gandhara, 1st century BC, Victoria and Albert Museum

Stone age[edit] Evidence of the Stone Age human inhabitants of Gandhara, including stone tools and burnt bones, was discovered at Sanghao near Mardan
Mardan
in area caves. The artifacts are approximately 15,000 years old. More recent excavations point to 30,000 years before the present. Vedic Gandhara[edit] Main articles: Gandhara
Gandhara
Kingdom, Indo-Aryan migration, and Vedic civilization Gandhara
Gandhara
was an ancient kingdom of the Peshawar
Peshawar
Valley, extending between the Swat valley
Swat valley
and Potohar plateau
Potohar plateau
regions of Pakistan
Pakistan
as well as the Jalalabad
Jalalabad
district of northeastern Afghanistan. In an archaeological context, the Vedic period
Vedic period
in Gandhara
Gandhara
corresponds to the Gandhara
Gandhara
grave culture. The name of the Gandhāris is attested in the Rigveda
Rigveda
(RV 1.126.7[1]) and in ancient inscriptions dating back to Achaemenid
Achaemenid
Persia. The Behistun inscription
Behistun inscription
listing the 23 territories of King Darius I
Darius I
(519 BC) includes Gandāra along with Bactria
Bactria
and Sattagydia
Sattagydia
(Θataguš). In the book Histories by Herodotus, Gandhara
Gandhara
is named as a source of tax collections for King Darius. The Gandhāris, along with the Balhika (Bactrians), Mūjavants, Angas, and the Magadhas, are also mentioned in the Atharvaveda
Atharvaveda
(AV 5.22.14), as distant people. Gandharas are included in the Uttarapatha division of Puranic and Buddhistic traditions. The Aitareya Brahmana refers to King Sailusha of Gandhara
Gandhara
who was a contemporary of Janaka, king of Videha. The primary cities of Gandhara
Gandhara
were Puruṣapura (Peshawar), Takṣaśilā (Taxila), and Pushkalavati
Pushkalavati
(Charsadda). The latter remained the capital of Gandhara
Gandhara
down to the 2nd century AD, when the capital was moved to Peshawar. An important Buddhist
Buddhist
shrine helped to make the city a centre of pilgrimage until the 7th century. Pushkalavati, in the Peshawar
Peshawar
Valley, is situated at the confluence of the Swat and Kabul
Kabul
rivers, where three different branches of the River Kabul
Kabul
meet. That specific place is still called Prang (from Prayāga) and considered sacred; local people still bring their dead there for burial. Similar geographical characteristics are found at site of Prang in Kashmir
Kashmir
and at the confluence of the Ganges and Yamuna, where the sacred city of Prayag
Prayag
is situated, west of Benares. There are some legends[citation needed] in which the two rivers are said to be joined here by the underground Sarasvati River, forming a triveṇī, a confluence of three rivers. However, Rigvedic texts, and modern research, suggest that the path of the Sarasvati River
Sarasvati River
was very different. It ended in the ocean at Kachchh in modern Gujrat and not at Prayag. The Gandharan city of Taxila
Taxila
was an important Buddhist
Buddhist
and Hindu centre of learning from the 5th century BC[17] to the 2nd century. Gandhara
Gandhara
is mentioned in the Hindu epics, the Mahabharata
Mahabharata
and the Ramayana, as a western kingdom. Gandhara
Gandhara
prince Shakuni
Shakuni
was the root of all the conspiracies of Duryodhana
Duryodhana
against the Pandavas, which finally resulted in the Kurukshetra War. Shakuni's sister was the wife of the Kuru king Dhritarashtra
Dhritarashtra
and was known as Gandhari. Gandhara
Gandhara
was in modern Pakistan. Puskalavati, Takshasila (Taxila) and Purushapura (Peshawar) were cities in this Gandhara
Gandhara
kingdom. Takshasila was founded by Raghava Rama's brother Bharata. Bharata's descendants ruled this kingdom afterwards. During epic period it was ruled by Shakuni's father Suvala, Shakuni
Shakuni
and Shakuni's son. Arjuna
Arjuna
defeated Shakuni's son during his post-war military campaign for Yudhishthira's Aswamedha Yagna. Achaemenid
Achaemenid
Gandhara[edit] Main articles: Achaemenid invasion of the Indus Valley
Achaemenid invasion of the Indus Valley
and Mahajanapadas The main Vedic tribes remaining in the Indus Valley
Indus Valley
by 550 BC were the Kamboja, Sindhu, Taksas of Gandhara, the Madras and Kathas of the River Chenab, Mallas of the River Ravi
River Ravi
and Tugras of the River Sutlej. These several tribes and principalities fought against one another to such an extent that the Indus Valley
Indus Valley
no longer had one powerful Vedic tribal kingdom to defend against outsiders and to wield the warring tribes into one organized kingdom. The area was wealthy and fertile, yet infighting led misery and despair. King Pushkarasakti of Gandhara was engaged in power struggles against his local rivals and as such the Khyber Pass
Khyber Pass
remained poorly defended. King Darius I
Darius I
of the Achaemenid Empire
Achaemenid Empire
took advantage of the opportunity and planned for an invasion. The Indus Valley
Indus Valley
was fabled in Persia for its gold and fertile soil and conquering it had been a major objective of his predecessor Cyrus The Great.[18] In 542 BC, Cyrus had led his army and conquered the Makran coast in southern Balochistan. However, he is known to have campaigned beyond Makran (in the regions of Kalat, Khuzdar, Panjgur) and lost most of his army in the Gedrosian Desert (speculated today as the Kharan Desert). In 518 BC, Darius led his army through the Khyber Pass
Khyber Pass
and southwards in stages, eventually reaching the Arabian Sea
Arabian Sea
coast in Sindh
Sindh
by 516 BC. Under Persian rule, a system of centralized administration, with a bureaucratic system, was introduced into the Indus Valley
Indus Valley
for the first time. Provinces or "satrapy" were established with provincial capitals: Gandhara
Gandhara
satrapy, established 518 BC with its capital at Pushkalavati (Charsadda).[19] Gandhara
Gandhara
Satrapy was established in the general region of the old Gandhara
Gandhara
grave culture, in what is today Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. During Achaemenid
Achaemenid
rule, the Kharosthi
Kharosthi
alphabet, derived from the one used for Aramaic (the official language of Achaemenids), developed here and remained the national script of Gandhara
Gandhara
until 200 AD. The inscription on Darius' (521–486 BC) tomb at Naqsh-i-Rustam near Persepolis
Persepolis
records Gadāra (Gandāra) along with Hindush
Hindush
(Hənduš, Sindh) in the list of satrapies. By about 380 BC the Persian hold on the region had weakened. Many small kingdoms sprang up in Gandhara. In 327 BC, Alexander the Great
Alexander the Great
conquered Gandhara
Gandhara
as well as the Indian satrapies of the Persian Empire. The expeditions of Alexander were recorded by his court historians and by Arrian
Arrian
(around AD 175) in his Anabasis Alexandri
Anabasis Alexandri
and by other chroniclers many centuries after the event. Sir Mortimer Wheeler
Mortimer Wheeler
conducted some excavations there in 1962, and identified various Achaemenid
Achaemenid
remains.

Coin of Early Gandhara
Gandhara
Janapada: AR Shatamana and one-eighth Shatamana (round), Taxila- Gandhara
Gandhara
region, c. 600–300 BC

A monetary silver coin of the satrapy of Gandhara
Gandhara
about 500–400 BC. Obv: Gandhara
Gandhara
symbol representing 6 weapons with one point between two weapons; At the bottom of the point, a hollow moon. Rev: Empty. Dimensions: 14 mm Weight: 1.4 g.

Macedonian Gandhara[edit] Main articles: Indian campaign of Alexander the Great
Alexander the Great
and Macedonian Empire In the winter of 327 BC, Alexander invited all the chieftains in the remaining five Achaemenid
Achaemenid
satraps to submit to his authority. Ambhi, then ruler of Taxila
Taxila
in the former Hindush
Hindush
satrapy complied, but the remaining tribes and clans in the former satraps of Gandhara, Arachosia, Sattagydia
Sattagydia
and Gedrosia
Gedrosia
rejected Alexander's offer. The first tribe they encountered were the Aspasioi tribe of the Kunar Valley, who initiated a fierce battle against Alexander, in which he himself was wounded in the shoulder by a dart. However, the Aspasioi eventually lost and 40,000 people were enslaved. Alexander then continued in a southwestern direction where he encountered the Assakenoi tribe of the Swat & Buner
Buner
valleys in April 326 BC. The Assakenoi fought bravely and offered stubborn resistance to Alexander and his army in the cities of Ora, Bazira (Barikot) and Massaga. So enraged was Alexander about the resistance put up by the Assakenoi that he killed the entire population of Massaga and reduced its buildings to rubble – similar slaughters followed in Ora.[20] A similar slaughter then followed at Ora, another stronghold of the Assakenoi. The stories of these slaughters reached numerous Assakenians, who began fleeing to Aornos, a hill-fort located between Shangla
Shangla
and Kohistan. Alexander followed close behind their heels and besieged the strategic hill-fort, eventually capturing and destroying the fort and killing everyone inside. The remaining smaller tribes either surrendered or like the Astanenoi tribe of Pushkalavati (Charsadda) were quickly neutralized where 38,000 soldiers and 230,000 oxen were captured by Alexander.[21] Eventually Alexander's smaller force would meet with the larger force which had come through the Khyber Pass
Khyber Pass
met at Attock. With the conquest of Gandhara
Gandhara
complete, Alexander switched to strengthening his military supply line, which by now stretched dangerously vulnerable over the Hindu Kush
Hindu Kush
back to Balkh in Bactria. After conquering Gandhara
Gandhara
and solidifying his supply line back to Bactria, Alexander combined his forces with the King Ambhi of Taxila and crossed the River Indus
River Indus
in July 326 BC to begin the Archosia (Punjab) campaign. Alexander founded several new settlements in Gandhara, Punjab
Punjab
and Sindh.[22] and nominated officers as Satraps of the new provinces: In Gandhara, Oxyartes
Oxyartes
was nominated to the position of Satrap by Alexander in 326 BC. Maurya
Maurya
arrival to Gandhara[edit] Chandragupta Maurya, the founder of the Mauryan
Mauryan
dynasty, is said to have lived in Taxila
Taxila
when Alexander captured the city. According to tradition, he trained under Kautilya, who remained his chief adviser throughout his reign. Supposedly using Gandhara
Gandhara
and Vahika as his base, Chandragupta led a rebellion against the Magadha
Magadha
Empire and ascended the throne at Pataliputra
Pataliputra
in 321 BC. However, there are no contemporary Indian records of Chandragupta Maurya
Chandragupta Maurya
and almost all that is known is based on the diaries of Megasthenes, the ambassador of Seleucus at Pataliputra, as recorded by Arrian
Arrian
in his Indika. Ambhi hastened to relieve Alexander of his apprehension and met him with valuable presents, placing himself and all of his forces at his disposal. Alexander not only returned Ambhi his title, and the gifts, but he also presented him with a wardrobe of: "Persian robes, gold and silver ornaments, 30 horses and 1000 talents in gold". Alexander was emboldened to divide his forces, and Ambhi assisted Hephaestion
Hephaestion
and Perdiccas
Perdiccas
in constructing a bridge over the Indus where it bends at Hund (Fox 1973), supplied their troops with provisions, and received Alexander himself, and his whole army, in his capital city of Taxila, with every demonstration of friendship and the most liberal hospitality. On the subsequent advance of the Macedonian king, Taxiles accompanied him with a force of 5000 men and took part in the battle of the Hydaspes River. After that victory he was sent by Alexander in pursuit of Porus, to whom he was charged to offer favourable terms, but narrowly escaped losing his life at the hands of his old enemy. Subsequently, however, the two rivals were reconciled by the personal mediation of Alexander; and Taxiles, after having contributed zealously to the equipment of the fleet on the Hydaspes, was entrusted by the king with the government of the whole territory between that river and the Indus. A considerable accession of power was granted him after the death of Philip (son of Machatas); and he was allowed to retain his authority at the death of Alexander himself (323 BC), as well as in the subsequent partition of the provinces at Triparadisus, 321 BC. Later Ambhi was deposed and killed by Chandragupta Maurya, emperor of the Mauryan
Mauryan
Empire. Gandhara
Gandhara
was acquired from the Greeks by Chandragupta Maurya. After a battle with Seleucus Nicator
Seleucus Nicator
(Alexander's successor in Asia) in 305 BC, the Mauryan
Mauryan
Emperor extended his domain up to and including present Southern Afghanistan. With the completion of the Empire's Grand Trunk Road, the region prospered as a center of trade. Gandhara remained a part of the Mauryan Empire
Mauryan Empire
for about a century and a half. Ashoka, the grandson of Chandragupta, was one of the greatest Indian rulers. Like his grandfather, Ashoka
Ashoka
also started his career in Gandhara
Gandhara
as a governor. Later he supposedly became a Buddhist
Buddhist
and promoted this religion in his empire. He built many stupas in Gandhara. Mauryan
Mauryan
control over the northwestern frontier, including the Yonas, Kambojas, and the Gandharas, is attested from the Rock Edicts left by Ashoka. According to one school of scholars, the Gandharas and Kambojas
Kambojas
were cognate people.[23][24][25] It is also contended that the Kurus, Kambojas, Gandharas and Bahlikas were cognate people and all had Iranian affinities,[26] or that the Gandhara
Gandhara
and Kamboja were nothing but two provinces of one empire and hence influencing each other's language.[27] However, the local language of Gandhara
Gandhara
is represented by Panini's conservative bhāṣā ("language"), which is entirely different from the Iranian (Late Avestan) language of the Kamboja that is indicated by Patanjali's quote of Kambojan śavati 'to go' (= Late Avestan
Avestan
šava(i)ti).[note 3] Graeco-Bactrians, Sakas, and Indo-Parthians[edit]

Greco- Buddhist
Buddhist
statue of standing Buddha, Gandhara
Gandhara
(1st–2nd century), Tokyo National Museum

The decline of the Empire left the sub-continent open to Greco-Bactrian invasions. Present-day southern Afghanistan
Afghanistan
was absorbed by Demetrius I of Bactria
Bactria
in 180 BC. Around about 185 BC, Demetrius invaded and conquered Gandhara
Gandhara
and the Punjab. Later, wars between different groups of Bactrian Greeks resulted in the independence of Gandhara
Gandhara
from Bactria
Bactria
and the formation of the Indo-Greek kingdom. Menander I
Menander I
was its most famous king. He ruled from Taxila
Taxila
and later from Sagala
Sagala
(Sialkot). He rebuilt Taxila
Taxila
(Sirkap) and Pushkalavati. He became a Buddhist
Buddhist
and is remembered in Buddhist records for his discussions with the great Buddhist
Buddhist
philosopher, Nāgasena, in the book Milinda Panha.

Marine deities, Gandhara.

Around the time of Menander's death in 140 BC, the Central Asian Kushans overran Bactria
Bactria
and ended Greek rule there. Around 80 BC, the Sakas, diverted by their Parthian cousins from Iran, moved into Gandhara
Gandhara
and other parts of Pakistan
Pakistan
and Western India. The most famous king of the Sakas, Maues, established himself in Gandhara. By 90 BC the Parthians had taken control of eastern Iran and, around 50 BC, they put an end to the last remnants of Greek rule in today's Afghanistan. Eventually an Indo-Parthian
Indo-Parthian
dynasty succeeded in taking control of Gandhara. The Parthians continued to support Greek artistic traditions. The start of the Gandharan Greco-Buddhist art
Greco-Buddhist art
is dated to about 75–50 BC. Links between Rome and the Indo-Parthian
Indo-Parthian
kingdoms existed.[28] There is archaeological evidence that building techniques were transmitted between the two realms. Christian records claim that around AD 40 Thomas the Apostle
Thomas the Apostle
visited the Indian subcontinent
Indian subcontinent
and encountered the Indo-Parthian
Indo-Parthian
king Gondophares.[29] Kushan
Kushan
Gandhara[edit]

Casket of Kanishka the Great, with Buddhist
Buddhist
motifs

The Parthian dynasty fell about 75 to another group from Central Asia. The Kushans, known as Yuezhi
Yuezhi
in China (argued by some[who?] to be ethnically Asii) moved from Central Asia to Bactria, where they stayed for a century. Around 75, one of their tribes, the Kushan (Kuṣāṇa), under the leadership of Kujula Kadphises gained control of Gandhara
Gandhara
and other parts of what is now Pakistan. The Kushan
Kushan
period is considered the Golden Period of Gandhara. Peshawar
Peshawar
Valley and Taxila
Taxila
are littered with ruins of stupas and monasteries of this period. Gandharan art flourished and produced some of the best pieces of sculpture from the Indian subcontinent. Many monuments were created to commemorate the Jatakas.

Head of a bodhisattva, c. 4th century

The Seated Buddha, dating from 300 to 500 CE, was found near Jamal Garhi, and is now on display at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco.

Gandhara's culture peaked during the reign of the great Kushan
Kushan
king Kanishka the Great
Kanishka the Great
(128–151). The cities of Taxila
Taxila
(Takṣaśilā) at Sirsukh and Peshawar
Peshawar
were built. Peshawar
Peshawar
became the capital of a great empire stretching from Gandhara
Gandhara
to Central Asia. Kanishka was a great patron of the Buddhist
Buddhist
faith; Buddhism
Buddhism
spread to Central Asia and the Far East across Bactria
Bactria
and Sogdia, where his empire met the Han Empire of China. Buddhist
Buddhist
art spread from Gandhara
Gandhara
to other parts of Asia. Under Kanishka, Gandhara
Gandhara
became a holy land of Buddhism
Buddhism
and attracted Chinese pilgrims eager to view the monuments associated with many Jatakas. In Gandhara, Mahayana Buddhism
Mahayana Buddhism
flourished and Buddha
Buddha
was represented in human form. Under the Kushans new Buddhists stupas were built and old ones were enlarged. Huge statues of the Buddha
Buddha
were erected in monasteries and carved into the hillsides. Kanishka also built a great 400-foot tower at Peshawar. This tower was reported by Chinese monks Faxian, Song Yun, and Xuanzang
Xuanzang
who visited the country. This structure was destroyed and rebuilt many times until it was finally destroyed by Mahmud of Ghazni
Mahmud of Ghazni
in the 11th century. Hepthalite Invasion[edit]

Gandhara
Gandhara
fortified city depicted in a Buddhist
Buddhist
relief

The Hephthalite
Hephthalite
Huns captured Gandhara
Gandhara
around 451, and did not adopt Buddhism, but in fact "perpetrated frightful massacres." Mihirakula became a "terrible persecutor" of the religion.[30] During their rule, Hinduism
Hinduism
revived itself and the Buddhist
Buddhist
Gandharan civilization declined. The travel records of many Chinese Buddhist
Buddhist
pilgrims record that Gandhara
Gandhara
was going through a transformation during these centuries. Buddhism
Buddhism
was declining, and Hinduism
Hinduism
was rising. Faxian
Faxian
traveled around 400, when Prakrit
Prakrit
was the language of the people, and Buddhism was flourishing. 100 years later, when Song Yun
Song Yun
visited in 520, a different situation was described: the area had been destroyed by the White Huns and was ruled by Lae-Lih, who did not practice the laws of the Buddha. Xuanzang
Xuanzang
visited India around 644 and found Buddhism
Buddhism
on the wane in Gandhara
Gandhara
and Hinduism
Hinduism
in the ascendant. Gandhara
Gandhara
was ruled by a king from Kabul, who respected Buddha's law, but Taxila
Taxila
was in ruins, and Buddhist
Buddhist
monasteries were deserted. Kabul
Kabul
Shahi[edit]

Sharing of the Buddha's relics, above a Gandhara
Gandhara
fortified city.

After the fall of the Sassanid Empire to the Arabs in 644, today's Afghanistan
Afghanistan
region and Gandhara
Gandhara
came under pressure from Muslims. But they failed to extend their empire to Gandhara. Gandhara
Gandhara
was first ruled by local kings who later expanded their kingdom onto an empire. Gandhara
Gandhara
was ruled from Kabul
Kabul
by Kabulshahi for next 200 years. Sometime in the 9th century the Kabul Shahi
Kabul Shahi
replaced the Shahi. Based on various Muslim records it is estimated this occurred in 870. According to Al-Biruni
Al-Biruni
(973–1048), Kallar, a Brahmin minister of the Kabulshahi, founded the Shahi
Shahi
dynasty in 843. The dynasty ruled from Kabul, later moved their capital to Udabhandapura. They built great temples all over their kingdoms. Some of these buildings are still in good condition in the Salt Range
Salt Range
of the Punjab. Decline[edit] Jayapala
Jayapala
was the last great king of this dynasty. His empire extended from west of Kabul
Kabul
to the river Sutlej. However, this expansion of Gandhara
Gandhara
kingdom coincided with the rise of the powerful Ghaznavid Empire under Sabuktigin. Defeated twice by Sabuktigin
Sabuktigin
and then by Mahmud of Ghazni
Mahmud of Ghazni
in the Kabul
Kabul
valley, Jayapala
Jayapala
gave his life on a funeral pyre. Anandapala, a son of Jayapala, moved his capital near Nandana
Nandana
in the Salt Range. In 1021 the last king of this dynasty, Trilochanapala, was assassinated by his own troops which spelled the end of Gandhara. Subsequently, some Shahi
Shahi
princes moved to Kashmir
Kashmir
and became active in local politics. The city of Kandahar
Kandahar
in Afghanistan
Afghanistan
is said to have been named after Gandhara. According to H.W. Bellow, an emigrant from Gandhara
Gandhara
in the 5th century brought this name to modern Kandahar. Faxian
Faxian
reported that the Buddha's alms-bowl existed in Peshawar
Peshawar
Valley when he visited around 400 (chapter XII). In 1872 Bellow saw this huge begging bowl (seven feet in diameter) preserved in the shrine of Sultan Wais outside Kandahar. When Olaf Caroe wrote his book in 1958 (Caroe, pp. 170–171), this relic was reported to be at Kabul
Kabul
Museum. The present status of this bowl is unknown. Writing c. 1030, Al Biruni
Al Biruni
reported on the devastation caused during the conquest of Gandhara
Gandhara
and much of northwest India by Mahmud of Ghazni following his defeat of Jayapala
Jayapala
in the Battle of Peshawar
Peshawar
at Peshawar
Peshawar
in 1001:

Now in the following times no Muslim conqueror passed beyond the frontier of Kâbul and the river Sindh
Sindh
until the days of the Turks, when they seized the power in Ghazna under the Sâmânî dynasty, and the supreme power fell to the lot of Nâṣir-addaula Sabuktagin. This prince chose the holy war as his calling, and therefore called himself al-Ghâzî ("the warrior/invader"). In the interest of his successors he constructed, in order to weaken the Indian frontier, those roads on which afterwards his son Yamin-addaula Maḥmûd marched into India during a period of thirty years and more. God be merciful to both father and son ! Maḥmûd utterly ruined the prosperity of the country, and performed there wonderful exploits, by which the Hindus became like atoms of dust scattered in all directions, and like a tale of old in the mouth of the people. Their scattered remains cherish, of course, the most inveterate aversion towards all Muslims. This is the reason, too, why Hindu sciences have retired far away from those parts of the country conquered by us, and have fled to places which our hand cannot yet reach, to Kashmir, Benares, and other places. And there the antagonism between them and all foreigners receives more and more nourishment both from political and religious sources.[31]

During the closing years of the tenth and the early years of the succeeding century of our era, Mahmud the first Sultan and Musalman of the Turk dynasty of kings who ruled at Ghazni, made a succession of inroads twelve or fourteen in number, into Gandhar – the present Peshwar
Peshwar
valley – in the course of his proselytizing invasions of Hindustan.<[32]

Fire and sword, havoc and destruction, marked his course everywhere. Gandhar which was styled the Garden of the North was left at his death a weird and desolate waste. Its rich fields and fruitful gardens, together with the canal which watered them (the course of which is still partially traceable in the western part of the plain), had all disappeared. Its numerous stone built cities, monasteries, and topes with their valuable and revered monuments and sculptures, were sacked, fired, razed to the ground, and utterly destroyed as habitations.[32]

Rediscovery[edit]

Many stupas, such as the Shingerdar stupa in Ghalegay, are scattered throughout the region near Peshawar.

By the time Gandhara
Gandhara
had been absorbed into the empire of Mahmud of Ghazni, Buddhist
Buddhist
buildings were already in ruins and Gandhara
Gandhara
art had been forgotten. After Al-Biruni, the Kashmiri writer Kalhaṇa wrote his book Rajatarangini in 1151. He recorded some events that took place in Gandhara, and provided details about its last royal dynasty and capital Udabhandapura. In the 19th century, British soldiers and administrators started taking an interest in the ancient history of the Indian Subcontinent. In the 1830s coins of the post- Ashoka
Ashoka
period were discovered, and in the same period Chinese travelogues were translated. Charles Masson, James Prinsep, and Alexander Cunningham
Alexander Cunningham
deciphered the Kharosthi script in 1838. Chinese records provided locations and site plans for Buddhist
Buddhist
shrines. Along with the discovery of coins, these records provided clues necessary to piece together the history of Gandhara. In 1848 Cunningham found Gandhara
Gandhara
sculptures north of Peshawar. He also identified the site of Taxila
Taxila
in the 1860s. From then on a large number of Buddhist
Buddhist
statues were discovered in the Peshawar
Peshawar
valley. Archaeologist John Marshall excavated at Taxila
Taxila
between 1912 and 1934. He discovered separate Greek, Parthian, and Kushan
Kushan
cities and a large number of stupas and monasteries. These discoveries helped to piece together much more of the chronology of the history of Gandhara
Gandhara
and its art. After 1947 Ahmed Hassan Dani
Ahmed Hassan Dani
and the Archaeology Department at the University of Peshawar
Peshawar
made a number of discoveries in the Peshawar and Swat Valley. Excavation of many of the sites of Gandhara Civilization are being done by researchers from Peshawar
Peshawar
and several universities around the world. Taliban
Taliban
destruction of Buddhist
Buddhist
relics[edit] Swat Valley in Pakistan
Pakistan
has many Buddhist
Buddhist
carvings, and stupas, and Jehanabad contains a Seated Buddha
Buddha
statue.[33] Kushan
Kushan
era Buddhist stupas and statues in Swat valley
Swat valley
were demolished after two attempts by the Taliban
Taliban
and the Jehanabad Buddha's face was dynamited.[34][35][36] Only the Buddhas of Bamiyan
Buddhas of Bamiyan
were larger than the carved giant Buddha
Buddha
statues in Swat near Manglore which the Taliban
Taliban
attacked.[37] The government did nothing to safeguard the statue after the initial attempts to destroy the Buddha, which did not cause permanent harm. But when a second attack took place on the statue, the feet, shoulders, and face were demolished.[38] Islamists such as the Taliban, and looters, destroyed many of Pakistan's Buddhist
Buddhist
artifacts from the Buddhist
Buddhist
Gandhara
Gandhara
civilization especially in the Swat Valley.[39] The Taliban
Taliban
deliberately targeted Gandhara Buddhist
Buddhist
relics for destruction.[40] The Christian Archbishop of Lahore, Lawrence John Saldanha, wrote a letter to Pakistan's government denouncing the Taliban's activities in Swat Valley including their destruction of Buddha
Buddha
statues and their attacks on Christians, Sikhs, and Hindus.[41] Gandhara
Gandhara
Buddhist
Buddhist
artifacts were illegally looted by smugglers.[42] A group of Italians helped repair the Buddha.[43] Language[edit] The Gandharan Buddhist
Buddhist
texts are both the earliest Buddhist
Buddhist
as well as Asian manuscripts discovered so far. Most are written on birch bark and were found in labelled clay pots. Panini has mentioned both the Vedic form of Sanskrit
Sanskrit
as well as what seems to be Gandhari, a later form of Sanskrit, in his Ashtadhyayi. Gandhara's language was a Prakrit
Prakrit
or "Middle Indo-Aryan" dialect, usually called Gāndhārī. The language used the Kharosthi
Kharosthi
script, which died out about the 4th century. However, Punjabi, Hindko, and Kohistani, are derived from the Indo-Aryan Prakrits that were spoken in Gandhara
Gandhara
and surrounding areas. However, a language shift occurred as the ancient Gandharan culture gave way to Iranian invaders from Central Asia.[44] Buddhism[edit] Further information: Silk Road
Silk Road
transmission of Buddhism

Maitreya
Maitreya
Bodhisattva, Gautama Buddha, and Avalokiteśvara
Avalokiteśvara
Bodhisattva. 2nd–3rd century AD, Gandhāra

Bronze statue of Avalokiteśvara
Avalokiteśvara
Bodhisattva. Fearlessness mudrā. 3rd century AD, Gandhāra

Mahāyāna Buddhism[edit] Mahāyāna Pure Land sūtras were brought from the Gandhāra region to China as early as AD 147, when the Kushan
Kushan
monk Lokakṣema began translating some of the first Buddhist
Buddhist
sūtras into Chinese.[45] The earliest of these translations show evidence of having been translated from the Gāndhārī language.[46] Lokakṣema translated important Mahāyāna sūtras such as the Aṣṭasāhasrikā Prajñāpāramitā Sūtra, as well as rare, early Mahāyāna sūtras on topics such as samādhi, and meditation on the buddha Akṣobhya. Lokaksema's translations continue to provide insight into the early period of Mahāyāna Buddhism. This corpus of texts often includes and emphasizes ascetic practices and forest dwelling, and absorption in states of meditative concentration:[47]

Paul Harrison has worked on some of the texts that are arguably the earliest versions we have of the Mahāyāna sūtras, those translated into Chinese in the last half of the second century CE by the Indo-Scythian translator Lokakṣema. Harrison points to the enthusiasm in the Lokakṣema sūtra corpus for the extra ascetic practices, for dwelling in the forest, and above all for states of meditative absorption (samādhi). Meditation and meditative states seem to have occupied a central place in early Mahāyāna, certainly because of their spiritual efficacy but also because they may have given access to fresh revelations and inspiration.

Some scholars believe that the Mahāyāna Longer Sukhāvatīvyūha Sūtra was compiled in the age of the Kushan Empire
Kushan Empire
in the 1st and 2nd centuries AD, by an order of Mahīśāsaka bhikṣus which flourished in the Gandhāra region.[48][49] However, it is likely that the longer Sukhāvatīvyūha owes greatly to the Mahāsāṃghika-Lokottaravāda sect as well for its compilation, and in this sūtra there are many elements in common with the Lokottaravādin Mahāvastu.[48] There are also images of Amitābha
Amitābha
Buddha
Buddha
with the bodhisattvas Avalokiteśvara and Mahāsthāmaprāpta
Mahāsthāmaprāpta
which were made in Gandhāra during the Kushan era.[50] The Mañjuśrīmūlakalpa records that Kaniṣka of the Kushan
Kushan
Empire presided over the establishment of the Mahāyāna Prajñāpāramitā teachings in the northwest.[51] Tāranātha wrote that in this region, 500 bodhisattvas attended the council at Jālandhra monastery during the time of Kaniṣka, suggesting some institutional strength for Mahāyāna in the northwest during this period.[51] Edward Conze goes further to say that Prajñāpāramitā
Prajñāpāramitā
had great success in the northwest during the Kushan
Kushan
period, and may have been the "fortress and hearth" of early Mahāyāna, but not its origin, which he associates with the Mahāsāṃghika
Mahāsāṃghika
branch of Buddhism.[52] Buddhist
Buddhist
translators[edit] Gandharan Buddhist
Buddhist
missionaries were active, with other monks from Central Asia, from the 2nd century AD in the Han-dynasty (202 BC – 220 AD) at China's capital of Luoyang, and particularly distinguished themselves by their translation work. They promoted scriptures from Early Buddhist
Buddhist
schools as well as those from the Mahāyāna. These translators included:

Lokakṣema, a Kushan
Kushan
and the first to translate Mahāyāna scriptures into Chinese (167–186) Zhi Yao (c. 185), a Kushan
Kushan
monk, second generation of translators after Lokakṣema Zhi Qian (220–252), a Kushan
Kushan
monk whose grandfather had settled in China during 168–190 Zhi Yue (c. 230), a Kushan
Kushan
monk who worked at Nanjing Dharmarakṣa (265–313), a Kushan
Kushan
whose family had lived for generations at Dunhuang Jñānagupta (561–592), a monk and translator from Gandhāra Śikṣānanda (652–710), a monk and translator from Oḍḍiyāna, Gandhāra Prajñā (c. 810), a monk and translator from Kabul, who educated the Japanese Kūkai
Kūkai
in Sanskrit
Sanskrit
texts

Textual finds[edit] The Chinese Buddhist
Buddhist
monk Xuanzang
Xuanzang
visited a Lokottaravāda
Lokottaravāda
monastery in the 7th century, at Bamiyan, Afghanistan. The site of this monastery has since been rediscovered by archaeologists.[53] Birchbark and palm leaf manuscripts of texts in this monastery's collection, including Mahāyāna sūtras, have been discovered at the site, and these are now located in the Schøyen Collection. Some manuscripts are in the Gāndhārī language and Kharoṣṭhī script, while others are in Sanskrit
Sanskrit
and written in forms of the Gupta script. Manuscripts and fragments that have survived from this monastery's collection include the following source texts:[53]

Pratimokṣa Vibhaṅga of the Mahāsāṃghika- Lokottaravāda
Lokottaravāda
(MS 2382/269) Mahāparinirvāṇa Sūtra, a sūtra from the Āgamas (MS 2179/44) Caṃgī Sūtra, a sūtra from the Āgamas (MS 2376) Vajracchedikā Prajñāpāramitā
Prajñāpāramitā
Sūtra, a Mahāyāna sūtra (MS 2385) Bhaiṣajyaguru Sūtra, a Mahāyāna sūtra (MS 2385) Śrīmālādevī Siṃhanāda Sūtra, a Mahāyāna sūtra (MS 2378) Pravāraṇa Sūtra, a Mahāyāna sūtra (MS 2378) Sarvadharmapravṛttinirdeśa Sūtra, a Mahāyāna sūtra (MS 2378) Ajātaśatrukaukṛtyavinodana Sūtra, a Mahāyāna sūtra (MS 2378) Śāriputra Abhidharma Śāstra (MS 2375/08)

A Sanskrit
Sanskrit
manuscript of the Bhaiṣajyaguruvaiḍūryaprabhārāja Sūtra was among the textual finds at Gilgit, Pakistan, attesting to the popularity of the Medicine Buddha
Buddha
in Gandhāra.[54] The manuscripts in this find are dated before the 7th century, and are written in the upright Gupta script.[54] Art[edit]

Greco- Buddhist
Buddhist
Portraits from the site of Hadda, Gandhara, 3rd century, Guimet Museum

Gandhāra is noted for the distinctive Gandhāra style of Buddhist art, which developed from a merger of Greek, Syrian, Persian, and local artistic influences. This development began during the Parthian Period (50 BC – AD 75). The Gandhāran style flourished and achieved its peak during the Kushan
Kushan
period, from the 1st to the 5th centuries. It declined and was destroyed after the invasion of the White Huns in the 5th century. Stucco
Stucco
as well as stone was widely used by sculptors in Gandhara
Gandhara
for the decoration of monastic and cult buildings. Stucco
Stucco
provided the artist with a medium of great plasticity, enabling a high degree of expressiveness to be given to the sculpture. Sculpting in stucco was popular wherever Buddhism
Buddhism
spread from Gandhara
Gandhara
– Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Central Asia, and China. See also: Greco- Buddhist
Buddhist
art

Standing Bodhisattva
Bodhisattva
(1st–2nd century)

Buddha
Buddha
head (2nd century)

Buddha
Buddha
head (4th–6th century)

Buddha
Buddha
in acanthus capital

The Greek god Atlas, supporting a Buddhist
Buddhist
monument, Hadda

The Bodhisattva
Bodhisattva
Maitreya
Maitreya
(2nd century)

Wine-drinking and music, Hadda (1st–2nd century)

Maya's white elephant dream (2nd–3rd century)

The birth of Siddharta (2nd–3rd century)

The Great Departure from the Palace (2nd–3rd century)

The end of ascetism (2nd–3rd century)

The Buddha
Buddha
preaching at the Deer Park in Sarnath
Sarnath
(2nd–3rd century)

Scene of the life of the Buddha
Buddha
(2nd–3rd century)

The death of the Buddha, or parinirvana (2nd–3rd century)

A sculpture from Hadda, (3rd century)

The Bodhisattva
Bodhisattva
and Chandeka, Hadda (5th century)

The Buddha
Buddha
and Vajrapani
Vajrapani
under the guise of Herakles

Hellenistic decorative scrolls from Hadda, Afghanistan

Hellenistic scene, Gandhara
Gandhara
(1st century)

A stone plate (1st century).

"Laughing boy" from Hadda

Bodhisattva
Bodhisattva
seated in meditation

Timeline[edit]

Legend: Bharat, the brother of Lord Rama
Rama
of Kosala, ruled from Gandhara, his sons were Taksh and Pushkala, who inhabited new cities called Taksha-shila (Taxila), and Pushkarvati (Peshawar).[55] Tentative timeline for this event is 5000 BC or before that [citation needed]. Legend: Gandhari, the princess of Gandhara
Gandhara
is married to Dhritrashtra, the king of Hastinapur. The Ancient Indian scripture Mahabharata
Mahabharata
dates this event to be around 3000 BC [citation needed]. c. 2300 – c. 1900 BC Indus Valley
Indus Valley
civilization c. 1900 – c. 520 BC No written records. Indo-Aryan migrations. Ramayana
Ramayana
legend says Lord Rama's brother Bharat ruled from Gandhara. c. 1500 – c. 500 BC Gandhara
Gandhara
grave culture c. 1200 – c. 800 BC Gandhari people mentioned in Rigveda
Rigveda
and Atharvaveda. c. 520 – c. 326 BC Persian Empire. Under direct Persian control and/or local control under Achaemenid
Achaemenid
suzerainty. c. 326 – c. 305 BC Occupied by Alexander the Great
Alexander the Great
and Macedonian generals c. 305 – c. 180 BC Controlled by the Maurya
Maurya
dynasty, founded by Chandragupta. Converted to Buddhism
Buddhism
under King Ashoka
Ashoka
(273–232 BC) c. 185 – c. 97 BC Under control of the Indo-Greek Kingdom, with some incursions of the Indo-Scythians
Indo-Scythians
from around 100 BC c. 97 BC – c. AD 7 Saka
Saka
(Indo-Scythian) Rule c. 7 – c. 75 Parthian invasion and Indo-Parthian
Indo-Parthian
Kingdom, Rule of Commander Aspavarman?. Ambhi Kumar, king of Gandhara
Gandhara
was a descendant of Lord Raghu and prince Bharat of Kosala
Kosala
Kingdom. c. 75 – c. 230 Kushan
Kushan
Empire c. 230 – c. 440 Kushanshas
Kushanshas
under Persian Sassanid suzerainty c. 450 – c. 565 White Huns (Hephthalites) c. 565 – c. 644 Nezak
Nezak
kingdom, ruled from Kapisa and Udabhandapura c. 650 – c. 870 Kabul
Kabul
Shahi, ruled from Kabul c. 870 – 1021 Hindu Shahi, ruled from Udabhandapura c. 1032 – 1350 Conquered and controlled by the empire of Mahmud of Ghazni.

See also[edit]

History of Pakistan History of India Gandhari people Kambojas Kashmir
Kashmir
Smast Mahajanapadas Mankiala

Notes[edit]

^ Puṣkalavati meaning "Lotus City" in Sanskrit ^ Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Puruṣapura, literally meaning "city of men", from puruṣa, "(primordial) man" and pura, "city". ^ NOTE: See long discussion under Mahajanapada
Mahajanapada
from the Ancient Buddhist
Buddhist
text Anguttara Nikaya's list of Mahajanapadas.

References[edit]

^ a b " Rigveda
Rigveda
1.126:7, English translation by Ralph TH Griffith".  ^ https://books.google.com/books?id=8wM-dNOa7fMC&pg=PA130&dq=gandharis+rgveda#v=onepage&q=gandharis%20rgveda&f=false ^ "UW Press: Ancient Buddhist
Buddhist
Scrolls from Gandhara". Retrieved April 2018. ^

Schmidt, Karl J. (1995). An Atlas and Survey of South Asian History, p.120: "In addition to being a center of religion for Buddhists, as well as Hindus, Taxila
Taxila
was a thriving center for art, culture, and learning." Srinivasan, Doris Meth (2008). "Hindu Deities in Gandharan art," in Gandhara, The Buddhist
Buddhist
Heritage of Pakistan: Legends, Monasteries, and Paradise, pp.130-143: " Gandhara
Gandhara
was not cut off from the heartland of early Hinduism
Hinduism
in the Gangetic Valley. The two regions shared cultural and political connections and trade relations and this facilitated the adoption and exchange of religious ideas. [...] It is during the Kushan
Kushan
Era that a flowering of religious imagery occurred. [...] Gandhara
Gandhara
often introduced its own idiosyncratic expression upon the Buddhist
Buddhist
and Hindu imagery it had initially come in contact with." Blurton, T. Richard (1993). Hindu Art, Harvard University Press: "The earliest figures of Shiva which show him in purely human form come from the area of ancient Gandhara" (p.84) and "Coins from Gandhara
Gandhara
of the first century BC show Lakshmi [...] four-armed, on a lotus." (p.176)

^ Kurt A. Behrendt (2007), The Art of Gandhara
Gandhara
in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, pp.4-5,91 ^ Mohiuddin, Yasmeen Niaz (2007). Pakistan: A Global Studies Handbook. ABC-CLIO. ISBN 9781851098019.  ^ Kalhana Rajatarangini referred to them as simply Shahi
Shahi
and inscriptions refer to them as sahi.(Wink, pg 125) ^ Al Biruni
Al Biruni
refers to the subsequent rulers as "Brahman kings"; however, most other references such as Kalahan refer to them as kshatriyas. (Wink, pg 125) ^ Kabul
Kabul
Shahi ^ Macdonell, Arthur Anthony; Keith, Arthur Berriedale (1995). Vedic Index of Names and Subjects. 1. Motilal Banarsidass Publishers. p. 219.  At Google Books. ^ Thomas Watters (1904). "On Yuan Chwang's travels in India, 629–645 A.D." Royal Asiatic Society. p. 200. Taken as Gandhavat the name is explained as meaning hsiang-hsing or "scent-action" from the word gandha which means scent, small, perfume.  At the Internet Archive. ^ Adrian Room (1997). Placenames of the World. McFarland. Kandahar. City, south central Afghanistan  At Google Books. ^ http://www.livius.org/articles/place/gandara/? ^ Herodotus
Herodotus
(1920). "3.102.1". Histories.  "4.44.2". Histories (in Greek). With an English translation by A. D. Godley.  "3.102.1". Histories.  "4.44.2". Histories. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.  At the Perseus Project. ^ Smith, William, ed. (1854). "Caspatyrus". Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography. Illustrated by numerous engravings on wood.  At the Perseus Project. ^ https://archive.org/details/catalogueofcoins01lahoiala ^ UNESCO World Heritage Centre: Taxila ^ Histories, epigraphy and authority: Achaemenid
Achaemenid
and indigenous control in Pakistan
Pakistan
in the 1st millennium BC [1][permanent dead link] ^ Rafi U. Samad, The Grandeur of Gandhara: The Ancient Buddhist Civilization of the Swat, Peshawar, Kabul
Kabul
and Indus Valleys. Algora Publishing, 2011, p. 32 ISBN 0875868592 ^ Mukerjee, R. K. History and Culture of Indian People, The Age of Imperial Unity, Foreign Invasion. p. 46.  ^ Curtius in McCrindle, p. 192, J. W. McCrindle; History of Punjab, Vol I, 1997, p 229, Punjabi University, Patiala (editors): Fauja Singh, L. M. Joshi; Kambojas
Kambojas
Through the Ages, 2005, p. 134, Kirpal Singh. ^ "Alexanders Empire – History of Ancient Pakistan".  ^ Revue des etudes grecques 1973, p 131, Ch-Em Ruelle, Association pour l'encouragement des etudes grecques en France. ^ Early Indian Economic History, 1973, pp 237, 324, Rajaram Narayan Saletore. ^ Myths of the Dog-man, 199, p 119, David Gordon White; Journal of the Oriental Institute, 1919, p 200; Journal of Indian Museums, 1973, p 2, Museums Association of India; The Pāradas: A Study in Their Coinage and History, 1972, p 52, Dr B. N. Mukherjee – Pāradas; Journal of the Department of Sanskrit, 1989, p 50, Rabindra Bharati University, Dept. of Sanskrit- Sanskrit
Sanskrit
literature; The Journal of Academy of Indian Numismatics & Sigillography, 1988, p 58, Academy of Indian Numismatics and Sigillography – Numismatics; Cf: Rivers of Life: Or Sources and Streams of the Faiths of Man in All Lands, 2002, p 114, J. G. R. Forlong. ^ Journal of the Oriental Institute, 1919, p 265, Oriental Institute (Vadodara, India) – Oriental studies; For Kuru-Kamboja connections, see Dr Chandra Chakraberty's views in: Literary history of ancient India in relation to its racial and linguistic affiliations, pp 14,37, Vedas; The Racial History of India, 1944, p 153, Chandra Chakraberty – Ethnology; Paradise of Gods, 1966, p 330, Qamarud Din Ahmed – Pakistan. ^ Ancient India, History of India
History of India
for 1000 years, four Volumes, Vol I, 1938, pp 38, 98 Dr T. L. Shah. ^ Rowland, Benjamin 1945 'Ganhdara and Early Christian Art: Buddha Palliatus', American Journal of Archaeology 49.4, 445–8 [2] ^ Bracey, R 'Pilgrims Progress' Brief Guide to Kushan
Kushan
History ^ Grousset, Rene (1970). The Empire of the Steppes. Rutgers University Press. pp. 69–71. ISBN 0-8135-1304-9.  ^ Alberuni's India. (c. 1030 AD). Translated and annotated by Edward C. Sachau in two volumes. Kegana Paul, Trench, Trübner, London. (1910). Vol. I, p. 22. ^ a b Henry Walter Bellow. The races of Afghanistan
Afghanistan
Being a brief account of the principal nations inhabiting that country. Asian Educational services. p. 73.  ^ http://factsanddetails.com/asian/cat62/sub406/item2566.html ^ Malala Yousafzai (8 October 2013). I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban. Little, Brown. pp. 123–124. ISBN 978-0-316-32241-6.  ^ Wijewardena, W.A. (17 February 2014). "'I am Malala': But then, we all are Malalas, aren't we?". Daily FT.  ^ Wijewardena, W.A (17 February 2014). "'I am Malala': But Then, We All Are Malalas, Aren't We?". Colombo Telegraph.  ^ "Attack on giant Pakistan
Pakistan
Buddha". BBC NEWS. 12 September 2007.  ^ "Another attack on the giant Buddha
Buddha
of Swat". AsiaNews.it. 10 November 2007.  ^ " Taliban
Taliban
and traffickers destroying Pakistan's Buddhist
Buddhist
heritage". AsiaNews.it. 22 October 2012.  ^ " Taliban
Taliban
trying to destroy Buddhist
Buddhist
art from the Gandhara
Gandhara
period". AsiaNews.it. 27 November 2009.  ^ Felix, Qaiser (21 April 2009). "Archbishop of Lahore: Sharia in the Swat Valley is contrary to Pakistan's founding principles". AsiaNews.it.  ^ Rizvi, Jaffer (6 July 2012). " Pakistan
Pakistan
police foil huge artefact smuggling attempt". BBC News.  ^ Khaliq, Fazal (7 November 2016). "Iconic Buddha
Buddha
in Swat valley restored after nine years when Taliban
Taliban
defaced it". DAWN.  ^ "Khaljies are Afghan". Abdul Hai Habibi. alamahabibi.com. Retrieved 19 August 2012.  ^ "The Korean Buddhist
Buddhist
Canon: A Descriptive Catalog (T. 361)".  ^ Mukherjee, Bratindra Nath. India in Early Central Asia. 1996. p. 15 ^ Williams, Paul. Mahāyāna Buddhism: The Doctrinal Foundations. 2008. p. 30 ^ a b Nakamura, Hajime. Indian Buddhism: A Survey With Biographical Notes. 1999. p. 205 ^ Williams, Paul. Mahāyāna Buddhism: The Doctrinal Foundations. 2008. p. 239 ^ "Gandharan Sculptural Style: The Buddha
Buddha
Image".  ^ a b Ray, Reginald. Buddhist
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Sources[edit]

Beal, Samuel. 1884. Si-Yu-Ki: Buddhist
Buddhist
Records of the Western World, by Hiuen Tsiang. 2 vols. Trans. by Samuel Beal. London. Reprint: Delhi. Oriental Books Reprint Corporation. 1969. Beal, Samuel. 1911. The Life of Hiuen-Tsiang by the Shaman Hwui Li, with an Introduction containing an account of the Works of I-Tsing. Trans. by Samuel Beal. London. 1911. Reprint: Munshiram Manoharlal, New Delhi. 1973. Bellew, H.W. Kashmir
Kashmir
and Kashgar. London, 1875. Reprint: Sang-e-Meel Publications 1999 ISBN 969-35-0738-X Caroe, Sir Olaf, The Pathans, Oxford University Press, Karachi, 1958. Herodotus
Herodotus
(1920). Histories (in Greek and English). With an English translation by A. D. Godley. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.  Hill, John E. 2003. "Annotated Translation of the Chapter on the Western Regions according to the Hou Hanshu". 2nd Edition: Through the Jade Gate to Rome: A Study of the Silk Routes, 1st to 2nd Centuries CE. 2015. John E. Hill. Volume I, ISBN 978-1500696702; Volume II, ISBN 978-1503384620. CreateSpace, North Charleston, S.C. Hussain, J. An Illustrated History of Pakistan, Oxford University Press, Karachi, 1983. Legge, James. Trans. and ed. 1886. A Record of Buddhistic Kingdoms: being an account by the Chinese monk Fâ-hsien of his travels in India and Ceylon (A.D. 399–414) in search of the Buddhist
Buddhist
Books of Discipline. Reprint: Dover Publications, New York. 1965. Shaw, Isobel. Pakistan
Pakistan
Handbook, The Guidebook Co., Hong Kong, 1989 Watters, Thomas. 1904–5. On Yuan Chwang's Travels in India (A.D. 629–645). Reprint: Mushiram Manoharlal Publishers, New Delhi. 1973.

Further reading[edit]

Lerner, Martin (1984). The flame and the lotus: Indian and Southeast Asian art from the Kronos collections. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art. ISBN 0-87099-374-7. 

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Gandhara.

Livius.org: Gandara The Buddhist
Buddhist
Manuscript project University of Washington's Gandharan manuscript Coins of Gandhara
Gandhara
janapada Gandhara
Gandhara
Civilization- National Fund for Cultural Heritage (Pakistan)

v t e

Provinces of the Achaemenid
Achaemenid
Empire (Behistun / Persepolis / Naqsh-e Rustam / Susa / Daiva
Daiva
inscriptions)

Amyrgoi Arabia Arachosia Aria Armenia Assyria Babylonia Bactria Cappadocia Caria Carmania Caucasian Albania Chorasmia Cilicia Colchis Dahae Drangiana 1st Egypt / 2nd Egypt Eber-Nari Elam Kusha (Nubia) Gandhara Gedrosia Hyrcania Ionia Hindush Libya Maka Margiana Media Lesser Media Massagetae Parthia Persia Phoenicia Phrygia

Hellespontine Phrygia Greater Phrygia

Saka Samaritan Province Lydia Sattagydia Thrace Sogdia Yehud

See also Districts of the Achaemenid Empire
Achaemenid Empire
(according to Herodotus)

v t e

Tribes and kingdoms mentioned in the Mahabharata

Abhira Andhra Anarta Anga Anupa Assaka Asmaka Avanti Ay Bahlika Bhārata Chedi Chera Chola Chinas Dakshina Kosala Dakshinatya Danda Dasarna Dasharna Dasherka Dwaraka Gandhāra Garga Gomanta Gopa Rashtra Hara Huna Heheya Himalaya Huna Kanchi Kasmira Kalakuta Kalinga Kamboja Karnata Karusha Kashi Kekeya Kerala Khasa Kikata Kirata Kishkindha Konkana Kosala Kuninda Kunti Kuru Lanka Madra Madraka Magadha Maha Chinas Mahisha Malla Malava Matsya Mekhalas Mleccha Mudgala Mushika Nasikya Nepa Niharas Nishada Odra Pallava Panchala Pandya Parada Parama Kamboja Parasika Parvartaka Parvata Paurava Pishacha Pragjyotisha Pratyagratha Prasthala Pundra Pulinda Saka Salva Salveya Salwa Saraswata Saurashtra Sauvira Shakya Sindhu Sinhala Sivi Sonita Sudra Suhma Surparaka Surasena Tangana Trigarta Tulu Tushara Ursa Uttara Kuru Uttara Madra Utkala Vanga Vatadhana Vatsa Videha Vidarbha Yavana Yaudheya

v t e

Mahajanapadas

Great Indian Kingdoms (c. 600 BCE–c. 300 BCE)

Anga Assaka
Assaka
(Asmaka) Avanti Chedi Gandhara Kashi Kamboja Kosala Kuru Magadha Malla (Mallarashtra) Machcha
Machcha
(Matsya) Panchala Surasena Vajji Vatsa
Vatsa
(Vamsa)

v t e

Middle kingdoms of India

Timeline and cultural period

Northwestern India (Punjab-Sapta Sindhu)

Indo-Gangetic Plain Central India Southern India

Upper Gangetic Plain (Kuru-Panchala)

Middle Gangetic Plain Lower Gangetic Plain

IRON AGE

Culture Late Vedic Period Late Vedic Period (Brahmin ideology)[a] Painted Grey Ware culture

Late Vedic Period (Kshatriya/Shramanic culture)[b] Northern Black Polished Ware

Pre-history

 6th century BC Gandhara Kuru-Panchala Magadha

Adivasi
Adivasi
(tribes)

Culture Persian-Greek influences "Second Urbanisation" Rise of Shramana
Shramana
movements Jainism
Jainism
- Buddhism
Buddhism
- Ājīvika
Ājīvika
- Yoga

Pre-history

 5th century BC (Persian rule)

Shishunaga dynasty

Adivasi
Adivasi
(tribes)

 4th century BC (Greek conquests) Nanda empire

HISTORICAL AGE

Culture Spread of Buddhism Pre-history Sangam period (300 BC – 200 AD)

 3rd century BC Maurya
Maurya
Empire Early Cholas Early Pandyan Kingdom Satavahana dynasty Cheras 46 other small kingdoms in Ancient Thamizhagam

Culture Preclassical Hinduism[c] - "Hindu Synthesis"[d] (ca. 200 BC - 300 AD)[e][f] Epics - Puranas
Puranas
- Ramayana
Ramayana
- Mahabharata
Mahabharata
- Bhagavad Gita
Bhagavad Gita
- Brahma Sutras - Smarta Tradition Mahayana Buddhism Sangam period (continued) (300 BC – 200 AD)

 2nd century BC Indo-Greek Kingdom Shunga Empire Maha-Meghavahana Dynasty

Early Cholas Early Pandyan Kingdom Satavahana dynasty Cheras 46 other small kingdoms in Ancient Thamizhagam

 1st century BC

 1st century AD

Indo-Scythians Indo-Parthians

Kuninda Kingdom

 2nd century Kushan
Kushan
Empire

 3rd century Kushano-Sasanian Kingdom Kushan
Kushan
Empire Western Satraps Kamarupa
Kamarupa
kingdom Kalabhra dynasty Pandyan Kingdom(Under Kalabhras)

Culture "Golden Age of Hinduism"(ca. AD 320-650)[g] Puranas Co-existence of Hinduism
Hinduism
and Buddhism

 4th century Kidarites Gupta Empire Varman dynasty

Kalabhra dynasty Pandyan Kingdom(Under Kalabhras) Kadamba Dynasty Western Ganga Dynasty

 5th century Hephthalite
Hephthalite
Empire Alchon Huns Kalabhra dynasty Pandyan Kingdom(Under Kalabhras) Vishnukundina

 6th century Nezak
Nezak
Huns Kabul
Kabul
Shahi

Maitraka

Adivasi
Adivasi
(tribes) Badami Chalukyas Kalabhra dynasty Pandyan Kingdom(Under Kalabhras)

Culture Late-Classical Hinduism
Hinduism
(ca. AD 650-1100)[h] Advaita Vedanta
Advaita Vedanta
- Tantra Decline of Buddhism
Buddhism
in India

 7th century Indo-Sassanids

Vakataka dynasty Empire of Harsha Mlechchha dynasty Adivasi
Adivasi
(tribes) Pandyan Kingdom(Under Kalabhras) Pandyan Kingdom(Revival) Pallava

 8th century Kabul
Kabul
Shahi

Pala Empire Pandyan Kingdom Kalachuri

 9th century

Gurjara-Pratihara

Rashtrakuta dynasty Pandyan Kingdom Medieval Cholas Pandyan Kingdom(Under Cholas) Chera Perumals of Makkotai

10th century Ghaznavids

Pala dynasty Kamboja-Pala dynasty

Kalyani Chalukyas Medieval Cholas Pandyan Kingdom(Under Cholas) Chera Perumals of Makkotai Rashtrakuta

References and sources for table

References

^ Samuel ^ Samuel ^ Michaels (2004) p.39 ^ Hiltebeitel (2002) ^ Michaels (2004) p.39 ^ Hiltebeitel (2002) ^ Micheals (2004) p.40 ^ Michaels (2004) p.41

Sources

Flood, Gavin D. (1996), An Introduction to Hinduism, Cambridge University Press  Hiltebeitel, Alf (2002), Hinduism. In: Joseph Kitagawa, "The Religious Traditions of Asia: Religion, History, and Culture", Routledge  Michaels, Axel (2004), Hinduism. Past and present, Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press  Samuel, Geoffrey (2010), The Origins of Yoga
Yoga
and Tantra. Indic Religions to the Thirteenth Century, Cambridge University Press 

Coordinates: 33°45′22″N 72°49′45″E / 33.7560°N 72.8291°E / 33.7

.