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Pushyamitra Sunga (Sunga Dynasty-Ancient India) UPSC Notes


Pushyamitra Sunga (Sunga Dynasty-Ancient India) UPSC Notes

Pushyamitra Sunga (Sunga Dynasty-Ancient India) UPSC Notes

No:1. Pushyamitra Sunga was the founder of the Sunga dynasty which emerged as a great ruling power in ancient India after the end of the Maurya empire.

No:2. Pushyamitra Sunga was the army chief of the last Mauryan King Brihadratha.

No:3. It is a widely-accepted fact that Pushyamitra snatched power from Brihadratha by killing him while the latter was reviewing his army.

No:4. Pushyamitra faced no notable resistance in his attempt to capture power as Brihadratha was very unpopular among his army and people.

No:5. Brihadratha’s inefficiency and incapability as a ruler paved the way for his easy downfall.

No:6. The majority of historians including K.P Jayaswal opined that Pushyamitra belonged to Bharadwaj gotra of the Brahmins.

No:7. Pushyamitra Sunga re-established the lost power and prestige of Magadha to a large extent and emerged as a formidable powerhouse in a short span of time.

No:8. He got a decisive victory against Yajnasena, the ruler of Vidarbha (Berar).

No:9. Actually, Yajnasena declared himself independent taking advantage of political chaos in Magadha.

No:10. Pushyamitra’s son Agnimitra succeeded in bringing Vidarbha under Magadha’s suzerainty once again at the behest of his father and King Pushyamitra.

No:11. Pushyamitra also successfully checked the growing power of the Greeks in India.

No:12. Greek King Demetrius launched a military campaign against Pushyamitra but the Sunga forces gave the Greek forces tough fights and forced them to retreat.

No:13. Pushyamitra performed two Aswamedha Yajnas ( horse sacrifice ritual) during his reign.

No:14. It is widely believed that both the Aswamedha Yajnas came after his success against the Greeks.

No:15. In fact, Pushyamitra ruled over a great kingdom for 36 years from 185 BC to 149 BC with great power and prestige.

No:16. The majestic Sunga glory reminded the power of the Maurya Empire to some extent.

No:17. According to the Ajodhya inscription, Pushyamitra Sunga performed two Aswamedha Yajnas in his reign.

No:18. Patanjali, the author of the ‘Mahabhasya’, was the royal priest of the two Aswamedha Yajnas of Pushyamitra.

No:19. Pushyamitra was a staunch follower of the Hindu religion and Brahminical traditions.

No:20. Some Buddhist texts like the Divyavadana portrayed him as the persecutor of the Buddhists but it doesn’t seem to be true.

No:21. After Pushyamitra, his son Agnimitra became the King of the Sunga empire in 149 BC. Agnimitra is also the hero of Kalidasa’s drama ‘Malvikagnimitra’.

No:22. Even after becoming the supreme power of the Magadha state, Pushyamitra did not renounce his title of Senapati (Army chief) which he used to carry during the reign of Brihadratha as his army chief.

Suggested : Chief Ministers and Governors of Indian States

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