The Puffin History of India for Children - Volume 1 (3000 BC To AD 1947)

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Item Code: NAE921
Author: Roshen Dalal
Publisher: Penguin Books India Pvt. Ltd.
Language: English
Edition: 2014
ISBN: 9780143333265
Pages: 416 (Throughout B/W Illustrations)
Cover: Paperback
Other Details 8.0 inch X 5.0 inch
Weight 410 gm
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Fully insured
Shipped to 153 countries
Shipped to 153 countries
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More than 1M+ customers worldwide
100% Made in India
100% Made in India
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23 years in business
Book Description
About the Book

In an informal, engaging style, The Puffin History of India for Children 3000 BC – AD 1947 tells the fascinating story of our land from the Indus Valley Civilization to Independence. Tracing the social, political, cultural and economic development of India, the book focuses on the high points of Indian history: the Vedic Age, the Mauryan Empire, the Gupta period, the Battle of Panipat, the conquests of Alauddin Khalji, who had the largest empire since Ashoka, the Brahmani and Vijayanagara kingdoms and their conflicts, the rule of Akbar, Shahjahan and Aurangzeb and the building of the Taj Mahal, the British conquest, the 1857 Revolt, the Nationalist movement and, finally, the triumph of Independence.

The contribution of the important personalities who shaped this history, from Mahavira, Buddha, Alexander, Ashoka, Harsha and Babur to Tipu Sultan, Ranjit Singh, Mahatma Gandhi, Subhash Chandra Bose and Jawaharlal Nehru, is vividly described in fascinating detail. Every now and then the narrative pauses to dwell on the social and cultural life of the people, and the political, economic and religious changes that have been wrought over centuries, providing a comprehensive picture of what life was like in India at various points of time. The colourful description of people, events and cultures, complemented by a host of illustrations and maps, brings history dramatically to life for the reader.

Informative, well researched entertaining and easy of follow this is the perfect introduction to india's history for children of all ages. This new edition features an attractive layout, all new illustrations, a revised and updated text, and several brand new chapter.


About the Author

Roshen Dalal was born in Mussoorie in 1952 and studied in various schools. After a BA (Hons.) in History she completed an MA and PhD in Ancient Indian History from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. She has worked on various research projects in History, and has taught for two years at Jawaharlal Nehru University and for four years at Rishi Valley School in Andhra Pradesh. She currently works as an editor and a freelance writer, She lives in New Delhi.



This book is a result of my years of teaching at the Rishi Valley School in Andhra Pradesh. The young students were lively, curious and full of questions but there were no books on Indian history which they could easily read and understand.

This book therefore has been written with young people in mind. It has been divided into relatively short chapters, with numerous subheads to make for easy reading. While concepts and ideas have been included, the book is also information based and therefore will serve as a source of reference.

While writing this history I have kept certain factors in mind- it should be accurate, incorporating recognized viewpoints of history; it should introduce young people to different sources, including archaeology; it should give equal emphasis to the history of south India, an area usually neglected. Finally, it should be something young people can read and understand themselves.

I have used various different sources which are too many to list here. However, some of the main secondary sources are- Romila Thapar, A History of India Vol I; Percival Spear, A History of India Vol II; A.L. Basham, The Wonder That Was India, Pt I; S.A.A.Rizvi, The Wonder That Was India, Pt II; R.C. Majumdar, et. al., An Advanced History of India; the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan series edited by R.C. Majumdar on the History and Culture of the Indian People, Bridget and Raymond Allchin, The Rise of Civilisation in India and Pakistan; Bipan Chandra, et. al., India’s Struggle for Independence; Nilakanta Sastri, History of South India; the series of history textbooks published by the NCERT, and the Social Science textbooks published by the Ekalavya group in Hoshangabad. In addition I have utilized my own research as well as other original sources.

I should like to thank Prof. Romila Thapar for going through the manuscript and making valuable suggestions, many of which I was able to incorporate, my editor Anubha Doyle for her dedicated work in giving the book its final shape and form, and my family for their support and encouragement. Thanks are also due to Aarohi Phadke for illustrating the book and Suman Tarafdar for preparing the maps. Most of all I would like to thank the students of the Rishi Valley School whom I taught or came in contact with between 1988 and 1994.

This new edition incorporates material from sources read over a number of years, which are too numerous to mention. Statistics for the pre- Independence period vary in different sources and those in chapter 61 are based mainly on the Gazetteer of India of the Publications Division.

I should like to thank Paul Vinay Kumar of Penguin India for encouraging me to work on a new edition, Udayan Mitra and Ajanta Guhathakurta of Penguin India for taking care of editing, design and production, Arvinder Chawla and Arun Pottirayil for the new illustrations, and Suman Tarafdar for additional maps. I should also like to thank Chanda Rani Akhouri for data on women in the electoral process, and my family for their help and support.




  Introduction ix
  A System of Dating xi
  Location of Places xii
1 India - Our Land 1
2 The First People 11
3 Village Life 17
4 The Indus Valley Civilization: An urban Revolution 23
5 Village Life in Others Parts of India 35
6 The Rig Vedic Aryans 38
7 The Later Vedic Period 44
8 Archaeology and the Vedic Period 51
9 Megalithic Cultures 57
10 The Mahajanapadas and the Rise of Magadha 59
11 New Religious Sects between 600 and 400 BC 68
12 Alexander 75
13 The Mauryas 79
14 North India after the Mauryas 89
15 The Kushanas 93
16 The Satavahanas 98
17 Kingdoms of the South 101
18 Towns and Trade: 200 BC - AD 300 107
19 The Guptas 111
20 The Deccan and South India 122
21 Harshavardhana 131
22 Northern India between AD 700 and 1200 137
23 Some Other Kingdoms of the North 145
24 Life in the Northern Kingdoms 148
25 South India between AD 600 and 1200 154
26 India in AD 1200 169
27 Ghazni and Ghur 171
28 The First Sultans of Delhi 175
29 The Khaljis and the Tughlaqs 180
30 The Sayyids and the Lodis 188
31 Some Independent States 190
32 Life at the Time of the Sultanate - AD 1200-1500 198
33 The Bahmani and Vijayanagara Kingdoms 207
34 The Early Mughals 220
35 Akbar, Jahangir and Shah Jahan 226
36 Aurangzeb and the decline of the Mughals 232
37 Life in Mughal India 237
38 The Marathas and the Sikhs 251
39 Other Independent States 256
40 Major Religious Developments between AD 1200 and 1750 261
41 The Europeans Arrive 265
42 The British Expansion and Conquest 271
43 Further Expansion- From Wellesley to Dalhousie 280
44 Administrative, Economic and Social Changes 286
45 Art and culture - 1750-1857 294
46 Early Indian Reformers 301
47 The Revolt of 1857 304
48 The Indian States 311
49 The Rise of Nationalism 314
50 The Moderates and the Extremists 319
51 The Later Reformers 328
52 The Muslim League 331
53 Art and culture after 1858 334
54 Social Change in the Twentieth Century 342
55 New Political Trends between 1908 and 1919 345
56 Mahatma Gandhi and Non- Cooperation 350
57 The Intermediate Years - 1922-1929 355
58 Civil Disobedience - 1930-1934 360
59 The First Indian Government 364
60 India during the Second World War 369
61 India before Independence 374
62 The Last Phase - 1945-1947 385


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