CBSE Class 6 History Notes Chapter 7 Ashoka, The Emperor Who Gave Up War

Class 6 Notes Social Science History Chapter 7 Ashoka, The Emperor Who Gave Up War help you in quick revision of the chapter. Reading these notes will help you to understand the lesson more easily. Once you have understood the chapter, you can easily write the answers of the questions that may come to your exams. Ultimately, our Class 6 NCERT Notes History Chapter 7 will help you to score good marks in the exam.

Ashoka, The Emperor Who Gave Up War Class 6 Notes Social Science History Chapter 7

  • By the end of the Vedic period, the Aryan tribal settlements spread across the Indo-Gangetic plains grew into territorial divisions like Janapadas.
  • One of the most powerful Janapadas, was that of Magadha under the Mauryas.  

Rise of Magadha:  

(i) The rise of Magadha is attributed to the fertile plains along the river Ganga.  

(ii) The Haryanka, Shishunaga and Nanda dynasties helped in the development of Magadha as a powerful state.  

(iii) Around 326 ruled by Nandas.  

(iv) The Nanda rulers who had humiliated Chanakya were overthrown by Chandragupta BC, Greek ruler Alexander invaded India. At that time Magadha was the one who established the Mauryan empire in 321BC with his capital at Pataliputra.  

(v) Chandragupta captured Punjab, Gujarat, Afghanistan. He even defeated Greek ruler Seleucus in 305BC.  

(vi) After ruling for 25 years, Chandragupta became a Jain ascetic and gave his kingdom to his son Bindusara who further expanded it southwards.

Ashoka’s war in Kalinga

Kalinga was the ancient name of coastal Orissa. Ashoka fought a war to conquer Kalinga. He was horrified when he saw the violence and bloodshed and so decided not to fight any more wars. He is the only king in the history of the world who gave up conquest after winning a war

Ashoka: From a Warrior to Messenger of Peace:  

(i) Bindusara was succeeded by his son Ashoka, the greatest Mauryan emperor.  

(ii) He undertook a military campaign against Kalinga. After defeating it he saw a pool of blood.  

(iii) The sight of large scale killing moved Ashoka and he embraced Buddhism.  

(iv) He began to spread the teachings of Buddha not only in India but even abroad.  

(v) His philosophy called ‘Dhamma’ was propagated all over. He preached peace, tolerance, shunning violence, stopping animal sacrifice and respect of slaves by their masters.  

(vi) He sent missionaries called ‘Dhamma Mahamattas’ to Sri Lanka, Burma and South- east Asian countries to propagate Buddhism.  

Mauryan Administration:  

(i) The Central administration was headed by the king who was the supreme judge and the law giver.  

(ii) The king appointed several officials called mantris and amatyas to assist him.  

(iii) The provincial administration was headed by a governor who was generally a Kumara or an Aryapura.  

(iv) The provinces were divided into districts  or Janapada. It had three important officials called Pradeshika, Rajuka and Yukta.  

Military System:  

(i) The Mauryas had established a vast empire with the help of a powerful army.  

(ii) Megasthenes, a Greek ambassador wrote that soldiers were most numerous class next to the cultivators.  

(iii) The Arthashastra mentions three types of soldiers namely, hereditary fighting class, mercenaries willing to fight for any government which engaged their services; and artisans.  

(iv) The army consisted of 6,00,000 infantary, 30,000 horsemen, 3,000 chariots and 9,000 elephants.  

(v) The army administration was under a commander-in-chief.  

(vi) There were six specialized departments to look after the military administration.  

(vii) Further the king appointed a number of trusted secret servicemen as spies. It helped the king to know what people thought about him.  

Achievements of Mauryas:  

(i) Agriculture was the main occupation of the Mauryas.  

(ii) In addition, merchants were also found in large numbers.  

(iii) Division in society was based on the different occupations of people.  

(iv) Mauryan art and architecture in the form of stupas, viharas, pillars and rock edicts are very popular.  

(v) Megasthenes Indica and Kautilya’s Arthashastra are two valuables sources of knowledge about the Mauryas.  

(vi) The state became weak politically and financially after the death of Ashoka and started declining.

What was Ashoka’s dhamma?

Did not involve worship of a god, or performance of a sacrifice. He had a duty to instruct his subjects and was also inspired by the teachings of the Buddha. A number of problems troubled him. People in the empire followed different religions, which led to conflict. Animals were sacrificed, Slaves and servants were ill treated, quarrels in families and amongst neighbours. Ashoka’s duty was to solve these problems. He appointed officials, known as the dhamma mahamatta, who went from place to place teaching people about dhamma.  His messages were inscribed on rocks and pillars. He instructed his officials to read his message to those who could not read it themselves. He also sent messengers to spread ideas about dhamma to other lands, such as Syria, Egypt, Greece and Sri Lanka. He built roads, dug wells, and built rest houses and arranged for medical treatment for both human beings and animals.

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