Ancient Geography of India - Buddhist Period by Alexander Cunningham

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  • 1.CHARLES WILLIAM WASONCOLLECTIONCHINA AND THE CHINESETHE GIFT OF CHARLES WILLIAM WASON CLASS OF 1876 1918

2. Cornell University Library DS 409.C97 India The ancient geqgraphv.of 3 1924 023 029 485f mm 3. Cornell UniversityLibrary The original of tliis book is in tine Cornell University Library.There are no known copyrightrestrictions inthe United States on the use of the text.http://www.archive.org/details/cu31924023029485 4. THEANCIENT GEOGRAPHYov INDIA. 5. A ".i.inMngVwLn-j inl^ 6. :THEANCIENT GEOGRAPHYINDIA. THE BUDDHIST PERIOD,INCLUDINGTHE CAMPAIGNS OP ALEXANDER, AND THE TRAVELS OF HWEN-THSANG. ALEXANDER CUNNINGHAM, Ui.JOB-GBirBBALj BOYAL ENGINEEBS (BENGAL BETIBBD). " Venun et terrena demoDstratio intelligatar,Alezandri MagnivestigiiB insistamns." PHnii Hist. Nat. vi. 17.WITS TSIRTBBN MAPS.LONDONTEUBNER AND CO., 60, PATERNOSTER ROW. 1871. [All Sights reserved.] 7. {% A^^TATLOB AND CO., PEIKTEES,LITTLE QUEEN STKEET, LINCOLNS INN EIELDS. 8. MAJOR-Q-ENEEALSIR H.C. RAWLINSON,K.G.B. ETC. ETC., WHO HAS HIMSELF DONE SOMUCH^TOTHROW LIGHT ON THE ANCIENT GEOGRAPHY OPASIA, THIS ATTEMPTTO ELUCIDATE A PARTIODLAR PORTIONOF THE SUBJKcrIS DEDICATEDBYHIS FRIEND,THE AUTHOR. 9. PEEFACE.The Geography of India may be conveniently dividedinto a few distinct sections, each broadlynamed afterthe prevailing religious and political character of theperiodwhich it embraces, as the Brahnanical, theBuddhist^and the Muhammadan. The Brahmanical period would trace the gradualextension of the Aryan race over Northern India, fromtheir first occupation of the Panjab to the rise ofBuddhism, and would comprise the whole of the Pre-historic,or earliest section of their history, duiingwhich time thereligion of the Vedas was the pre-vailing belief of the country.The Buddhist period, or Ancient Geography of India,would embrace the rise, extension, and decline of theBuddhist faith,from the era of Buddha, totheconquests ofMahmudof Ghazni, during the greaterpart of which time Buddhism was the dominantreli-gion of the country.The Muhammadan period, or Modern Geographyof India, would embrace the rise and extension ofthe Muhammadan power, from the time ofMahmudofGhazni750 years,to the battle of Plassey, or aboutduring which time the Musalm,ns were the paramountsovereigns of India. 10. ;VI PREFACE.The illustration of the Yedic period has alreadybeen made the subject of a separate work by M. Viviende Saint-Martin, whose valuable essay* on this earlysection of IndianGeography shows how much interest-ing informationelicited from the Hymns ofmay bethe Yedas, by an able and careful investigator.The second, or Ancient period, has been partiallyillustrated by H. H. Wilson, in his Ariana Antiqua,and by Professor Lassen, in his Pentapotamia Indica. These works, however, refer only to North-west Indiabut the Geography of the whole country has beenably discussed by Professor Lassen, in his large workon Ancient India, f and still more fully by M. de Saint-Martin, in two special essays, the one on the Geo-graphy of India, as derived from Greek and Latinsources, and the other in an Appendix to M. Julienstranslation of the Life and Travels of the Chinesepilgrim Hwen Thsang.JHis researches have beenconducted with so much care and success that fewplaces have escaped identification. But so keen ishis critical sagacity, that in some cases where theimperfection of our maps rendered actual identi-fication quite impossible, he has indicated the truepositions within a few miles. For the illustration of the third, or Modern period,ample materials exist in the numerous histories of theMuhammadan States of India. No attempt, so far as Iam aware, has yet been made to mark the limits of theseveral independentkingdoms that were established* Etude sur la Geograpbie et Ics populations primitives du Nord- Ouest de Ilude, dapres les Hymnes Vediques. Paris, 1859. t Indische Altertluimskiinde." 4 vols. Bonn. X Etude sur la Geographie Grecque et Latine de Ilnde, 1858. M.Juliens Hiouen Thsang, vol. iii. p. 251; "Mcmoire Analytique," etc. 11. PREFACE.Vllin the fifteenth century, during the troubles whichfollowed the invasion of Timur. The historyof thisperiod is very confused, owing to the want of aspecialmap, showing the boundaries of the different Muham-madan kingdoms of Delhi, Jonpur, Bengal, Malwa,Gujarat, Sindh, Multan, and Kulbarga, as well as thedifferent Hindu States, such as Gwalior and others,which became independent about the same time. I have selected the Buddhist period, or AncientGeography of India, as the subject of the presentinquiry, as I believe that the peculiarly favourableopportunities of local investigation which I enjoyedduring a long career in India, will enableme to de-termine with absolute certainty the sites of many ofthe most important places in India.My which I have under- chief guides for the periodtaken to illustrate, are the campaigns of Alexanderin the fourth century before Christ, and the travelsof the Chinese pilgrim, Ilwen Thsang, in the seventhcentury after Christ.The pilgrimageof tnis Chinesepriest forms an epoch of as much interest and import-ance for the Ancient History and Geography of India,as the expedition ofAlexander the Great.Theactualcampaigns of the Macedonian conqueror were confinedto the valley of theIndus and its tributaries ; but theinformation collected by himself andhis companions,and by the subsequent embassies and expeditions ofthe Seleukide kings of Syria, embraced the wholevalley of the Ganges on the north, the eastern andwestern coasts of the peninsula, and some scatterednotices of the interior of the country.This infor-mation was considerably extended by the systematicinquiries of Ptolemy, whose account is the more valu- 12. VUl PREFACE.able, as it belongs to a period justmidway* betweentbe date of Alexander and that of Hwen Thsang, atwhich time the greater part of North-west India hadbeen subjected by the Indo-Scythians. With Ptolemy, we lose the last of our great classi-cal authorities and, until lately, we were left almost;entirelyto ourown judgment inconnectingandarranging the various geographical fragments that lieburied in ancient inscriptions, or half hidden in thevague obscurity of the Puranas. But the fortunatediscovery of the travels of several Chinese pilgrimsin the fifth, sixth,and seventh centuries of the Chris-tian era, has thrown such a flood of light upon thishitherto dark period, that weare nowable to see ourway clearly to the generalarrangement of most ofthe scattered fragments of the Ancient Geography ofIndia. The Chinese pilgrim Fa-Hianwas a Buddhistpriest,who travelled through India from the banks ofthe Upper Indus to the mouth of the Ganges,betweenthe years 399 and 413 a.d.Unfortunately his journalis very concise, and ischiefly takenup with the de-scription of the sacred spotsand objects of his reli-gion, but as he usually gives the bearings and dis-tances of the chief places in his route, his short noticesare very valuable.The travels of the second Chinesepilgrim, Sung-Tun, belong to the year 502 a.d., but asthey were confined to the Kabul valley and North-west Panjab, they are of much less importance, more * Campaign of Alexander, b.c.3.30, and Ptolemys Geography, a.d.150, or 480 years laler. Beginning of Hwen Thsangs travels in India,A.D. 03O, or just 480 years after Ptolemy. 13. PREFACE.IXespecially as his journal is particularly meagre ingeographical notices.* The third Chinese pilgrim,Hwen Thsang, was alsoa Buddhist priest,who spent nearly fifteen years ofhis life in India in studying thefamous Vooks of hisreligion, and in visiting all the holy places of Buddhism.For the translation of his travels we are wholly in-debted to M. Stanislas Julien, who with unweariedresolution devoted his great abilities for no less thantwenty years to the acquirement of the Sanskrit andChinese languages for this special purpose, f The periodof Hwen Thsangs travels extended from a.d. 629 to645. During that time hevisited most of the greatcities throughout the country, from Kabul and Kashmirto the mouths of the Ganges and Indus, and fromNepMKanchipura near Madras.to The pilgrimentered Kabul from the north-west, via Bamian, aboutthe end of May, a.d. 630, and after many wanderingsand several long halts, crossed the Indus at Ohind inApril of the following year. He spent several monthsin Taxila for the purpose of visiting the holy places ofBuddhism, and then proceeded to Kashmir, where hestayed for two whole years to study some of the morelearned works of his religion.On his journey east-ward he visited the ruins of Sarigala^ so famous in thehistory of Alexander, and after a stay of fourteenmonths in Chinapati^ and of four months in Jdland/tara,for the further study of his religion he crossed theSatlej in the autumn of a.d. 635.From thence hisonward course was more devious, as several times he* The travels of both of these pilgrims have been most carefullyand ably translated by the Eev. S. Beal.t Max Miillers Buddhism and Buddhist Pilgrims, p. 30. 14. XPEEFACE.retraced his steps to visit places which had heenleftbehind in his direct easterly route. Thus, after havingreached Mathura he returned to the north-west, adis-tance of 200 miles to Thdnesar, from whence he re-sumed his easterly route via Srughna on the Jumna,and Gangadwdra on the Ganges to AhicJthatra, thecapital of Northern Panchdla, or Eohilkhand. Henext recrossed the Ganges to visit the celebrated citiesof SanMsa, Kanoj, and Kosdmbi in the Do^b, and thenturning northward into Oudh he paid his devotions atthe holy places of Ayodhya and Srdvasti. From thencehe resumed his easterly route to visit the scenes ofBuddhas birth and death at Kapilavasfu and Kasina-gara and then once more returned to the westward ;to the holy city of Bandras^ where Buddha first beganto teach his religion. Again resuming his easterly routehe visited the famous city of Vaisdli in Tirhdt, fromwhence he made an excursion to Nei>al, and then re-tracing his steps to Vaisali he