|Ancient India Timeline
Prehistoric Period: ( 400000 BC - 1000 BC ): The period when man, basically a food gatherer, discovered fire and wheel.
Indus Valley Civilisation: (2500 BC - 1500 BC): Derived its name from the river Indus and thrived on agriculture and worshipped natural forces.
Epic Age: (1000 BC - 600 BC): The period saw the compilation of the Vedas, distinction of Varnas in terms of Aryans and Dasas (slaves).
Hinduism and Transition: (600 BC - 322 BC): As caste system became more rigid, the period saw the advent of Mahavira and Buddha who rebelled against casteism. Mahajanapadas were formed - Magadha under Bimbisara and Ajat Shatru and Shisunanga and Nanda dynasty.
The Mauryan Age: (322 BC - 185 BC): Founded by Chandragupta Maurya, the empire encompassed the entire North India and Bindusara further extended it. After fighting the Kalinga war, Ashoka embraced Buddhism.
The Invasions: (185 BC - 320 AD): The period saw the invasion of Bactrians, Parthians, Shakas & Kushans, opening of Central Asia for trade, issuance of GOLD coins and introduction of the Saka era.
Deccan and South India: (65 BC - 250 AD): The southern part was ruled by Cholas, Cheras and Pandyas This period is known for construction of Ajanta and Ellora cave temples, Sangam literature, and arrival of Christianity to India.
The Gupta Dynasty: (320 AD - 520 AD): The Gupta dynasty founded by Chandragupta I, ushered in classical age in north India with Samudragupta extending his kingdom and Chandragupta II fighting against Shakas.
Shakuntalam and Kamasutra were written during this period, Aryabhatta achieved feats in Astronomy and Bhakti cult emerged.
Age of Small Kingdoms: (500 AD - 606 AD): The period saw migrations from Central Asia and Iran as Hunas moved to north India. There was rise of many small kingdoms as the North was divided into warring kingdoms.
Harshavardhana: (606 AD - 647 AD): The famous Chinese traveller Hieun Tsang visited India during Emperor Harshawardhana's reign. But his kingdom disintegrated into small states even as Hunas invaded. It was a period when the Deccan and the south became powerful.
The Southern Kingdoms: (500 AD - 750 AD): Empire of Chalukyas, Pallavas & Pandya flourished. Zoroastrians (Parsis) came to India.
Chola Empire: (9th Cent. AD - 13th Cent. AD): Founded by Vijayalaya, the Chola empire adopted a maritime policy. Temples became cultural and social centres and Dravadian languages flourished.
The Northern Kingdoms: (750 AD - 1206 AD): The Rashtrakutas became powerful, Pratiharas ruled in Avanti and Palas ruled Bengal. The period also saw emergence of Rajput clans.
Temples at Khajuraho, Kanchipuram, Puri were built and miniature painting started. The period witnessed invasion from the Turks.