The Vedic Age
The History of Vedic India is known largely through its is religious texts, the Vedas, which gave the period its name. The Vedas recorded not only the religious of the Vedic people, but also details of their lives that give us a look at their political, social and economic patterns. The Rig-Veda, the oldest literary creation, not only in India, but in the entire Indo-European literature too, talks of a simple socio-economic, Political Set-Up and religious life.
The Vedic age is perceived to have been initiated in India in about 1500 BC and extending up to 6000 BC. The same is said to have begun with the coming of the Aryans, who inhabited the plains of Northern India. The word Aryan is derived from the word Arya, implying high birth, but generally, the word refers to a language and not race. The Vedic culture was developed by these Aryans based on the Vedas. ’Veda’ means knowledge and is seen as the best of all knowledge by the Hindus.
There are many theories about the origin of these people. The most accepted view is that they lived somewhere to the East of the Alps, the region of the Caspian Sea and also in the southern Russian steppes, as believed by scholars namely Max Mueller and Dr. Thapar. They were semi-nomadic people. In this 2nd millennium BC, They started moving from their original homes homes and migrated Eastwards and Southwards.
The Boghaz Kai inscriptions dated 1400BC, provides information about a peace treaty between the Hittites and the Mittani rulers of the Hittani, in which the names of the Vedic Gods-Indra, Mitra, Nasatya and Varuna are mentioned, which supported the view, that Central Asia was the homeland of the Aryans. Other Scholars, namely Ganganath Jha, AC Das etc. laid down the Sapta-Sindhu Theory, stressing that the Aryans were indigenous people and not foreigners and resided in the regions of Punjab and Sindh. That the Vedic age was established by the Aryans has also been corroborated by a striking similarity between the Rigvedic (languge) and the Zend Avesta.
Advent of the Aryans in India
It is believed that Indo-Aryans migrated from central Asia into the Indian sub-continent in several stages or waves via Minor Turkey (Modern Turkey). From Iran, a group of Aryans branched off to move towards India. These Indo-Aryans and Iranian Aryans occupied Iran for much time, a part of this country came to be known as the Arya or Haraiva.
Through Hindu Kush, These Indo Aryans came to India around 1500 BC. These early immigrants made the region of Sapta Sindhu their home i.e. the land of seven rivers, the area comprising Eastern Afghanistan, Punjab and Western Utter Pradesh. The Aryans are argued to have entered into a conflict with the Dravidians (or dasa or the dasyus in the Rigveda. Trasadvasyu was the Aryan chief who ever dasyuhatya (meaning, slaughter of the dasyus) finding a repeated mention in the Rigveda.
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