Chandragupta Mayura (B.C. 322 B.C. 298)
to greatness is indeed a romance in history. There are different views
about his ancestry. According to Visakadatta, Chandragupta is called Maurya
Putra, i.e. son of Maurya. The name of Maurya is the corrupted form of
Mura, the mother of Chandragupta Maurya. Some writers view that Chandragupta
came from the Moriya clan near Pataliputra. Some consider that he was
the son of Peacock (Mura) rearer.
Chanakya was a kingmaker. He was otherwise known as Kautilya. He was the root cause for the establishment of the Mauryan rule in India. He has written the Arthasastra. It is a book on Statecraft. He is compared to Machiavelli of Italy, a great political thinker, Chanakya served as prime minister during the reigns of Chandragupta and Bindusara.
Conquests of Chandragupta
Chandragupta checked the
further advance of the Greeks in the North west. He defeated Seleukos
Nikator, the Greek general of Alexander; in a battle in 305 B.C. Seleukos
surrendered Khandahar, Herat, Kabul and Baluchistan to Chandragupta. He
also gave his daughter, Helen, in marriage to Chandragupta. Chandragupta
presented Seleukos with 500 elephants as a royal gift. Seleukos sent Megasthenes
as Greek Ambassador to the Court of Chandragupta. Megasthenes wrote Indica.
It is a very important source of information on the Mauryan administration
of the city of Pataliputra. He conquered a number of North Indian Kingdoms.
He also extended his empire up to Saurashtra in the West and the Deccan
in the South.
Chandragupta Maurya was succeeded by his son Bindusara He had the title Amitrakhada or slayer of foes. Bindusara appointed his eldest son Sumana as the Viceroy of Taxila and younger son Asoka as the Viceroy of Ujjain. During his rule two revolts took place in Taxila His elder son Sumana could not Suppress them. So Asoka was sent to suppress them. The rebellions were put down. Though Bindusara did not make any conquests he consolidated the Empire that he inherited from his father. He maintained good re with foreign rulers. The Greek and Egyptian rulers sent their ambassadors to Bindusara’s court.
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