Madhya Pradesh History

Information on history of Madhya Pradesh

Madhya Pradesh history states the past of the state, when it was ruled by the renowned dynasties. It even portrays the journey of the state from the past to the present. The state is said to be the habitat of some of the famous dynasties.

The history of the place dates back to approximately 9, 000 long years, which is being proved by the historical findings of this state located in the central part of the country of India. Madhya Pradesh's history can be broadly categorized into three distinct phases, which are mentioned below:

Ancient Age

History be it ancient or modern history tells a story of man's endeavor in this transient world. Ancient Madhya Pradesh, in fact, helps us to get a hunch about our ancestors and how they survived in this hostile world.To begin with the ancient Madhya Pradesh,one can say that the earliest dwellings of mankind can be found in the caves of Bhimbetka. The inscriptions and drawings on the caves narrate a magnanimous story of the ancient Madhya Pradesh.

Bhimbetka forms a part of the prehistoric period of Madhya Pradesh; but the ancient history of Madhya Pradesh starts with the accession of the Mauryan kings to the throne.It was in 320 BC that Chandragupta Maurya assumed control over the provision which constitutes most of the places of modern Madhya Pradesh. Another Mauryan king, Ashoka had a tremendous grip over the Malwa region. It is noteworthy that king Ashoka's wife, Vidisha also belonged to the beautiful city of Bhopal, the capital of today's Madhya Pradesh.

But with the disintegration of the Mauryan empire, the administration of Madhya Pradesh passed onto the Sakas and Kushanas. The ancient Madhya Pradesh professes that the Sakas and Kushanas ruled over Madhya Pradesh for a long stretch of time - their rule continued from 3rd to 1st century BC.After the Sakas and the Kushanas came the chivalrous Satavahanas. The Satavahana Dynasty stands as a milestone in the ancient Madhya Pradesh. Ancient Madhya Pradesh has it that the Satavahanas ruled Madhya Pradesh from 1st to 3rd century AD.

But, towards the end of the 4th century, Gupta Empire came into the political scenario, and defeating the Satavahanas, they established themselves as the undaunted masters of the region. Their rule continued over 150 years; but like all good stories it came to an end in the 5th century. Thus started a new era known as the medieval period making an end to the ancient Madhya Pradesh.

Medieval age

deals with the medieval period in the history of Madhya Pradesh.Medieval history of Madhya Pradesh celebrates the kings, rulers and administrators that came to power in Madhya Pradesh after the decline of the gigantic Gupta empire.Medieval Madhya Pradesh proves that after the death of Ashoka, his successors were weak and lacked much of the intellect that constituted the other Mauryan kings. There were a lot of pleasure loving men who showed little interest in the administration of their empire.

Moreover, it can be said that the medieval Madhya Pradesh dates back to the 5th century when history was mourning over the end of a golden era in India. The Gupta kings, indeed, transformed India into a 'golden bird'. The disintegration of the Gupta empire led to the fragmentation of Madhya Pradesh, but King Harsh of Thanesar came as a messiah to reorganize the broken lot. Till his death in 647 AD, King Harsh worked towards the unification of this region.

After King Harsha, the rise of the Rajput clan created significant epoch in the medieval Madhya Pradesh. During the succeeding years the Paramaras of Malwa and Chandelas of Bundelkhand went on an interesting expedition of constructing temples around this region. The work of art and architecture on the walls of a series of temples in Khajuraho is significant in the medieval Madhya Pradesh that dates back to a period from 950 AD to 1050 AD.

But the medieval Madhya Pradesh witnessed a series of hullabaloo between the 12th and 16th centuries. During this period of the medieval Madhya Pradesh, the state saw a persisting clash between the Hindu clan and Muslim rulers, as well as the invaders.

Modern age

Modern age starts with the emergence of the Mughal emperors in the political scene of Madhya Pradesh. Modern Madhya Pradesh is a gradual culmination from medieval period to the modern era which chiefly speaks of the infiltration of the Britishers into India.
As the modern history says, Madhya Pradesh was the important seat of the Mughal emperors. Books on the modern Madhya Pradesh reveal that Akbar had a strong hold over Madhya Pradesh from 1556 to 1605 AD. Till Aurangzeb's reign, the Mughal dominance over Madhya Pradesh was prominent; but with his demise, his successors failed miserably and the Marathas overtook the Mughals. The Marathas established a semi-autonomous rule between 1720 and 1760 AD.

But the modern Madhya Pradesh bears witness to the influence of the Marathas in this region. With the defeat of the Marathas in the Battle of Panipat in 1761, the Maratha supremacy lost its meaning. Between the 18th and 19th centuries, in Madhya Pradesh, the British crown was expanding its domain in India; and the Anglo-Maratha War proved detrimental in this context. Further, modern Madhya Pradesh also bears reference of the state of Madhya Pradesh post Indian independence. In 1947, the former British Central Province was re-organized. Berar, Makrai and Chhattisgarh were culled from Madhya Pradesh, and were given a separate entity with Nagpur as their capital.

Moreover, in 1956, the states of Madhya Bharat, Vindhya Pradesh and Bhopal were merged into Madhya Pradesh. It was till 2000 that Madhya Pradesh was the largest state in India; but owing to the Madhya Pradesh Reorganization Act, the southern part of Madhya Pradesh was carved out, and the new state of Chhattisgarh came into existence.

Last Updated on : 14th March 2013



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