Mauryan Empire

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Definition

The Mauryan Empire (322 BCE - 185 BCE) supplanted the earlier Magadha Kingdom to assume power over large tracts of eastern and northern India. At its height, the empire stretched over parts of modern Iran and almost the entire Indian subcontinent, barring only the southern peninsular tip. The empire came into being when Chandragupta Maurya stepped into the vacuum created by Alexander of Macedon's departure from the western borders of India. Chandragupta subjugated the border states, recruited an army, marched upon the Magadha kingdom, killed its tyrannical king who was despised by the populace, and ascended the throne. He thus founded the Mauryan dynasty. In his rise to power, he was aided and counselled by his chief minister Kautilya (also known as Chanakya), who wrote the Arthashastra, a compendium of kingship and governance.

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