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Current time:0:00Total duration:6:37

Video transcript

in previous videos we talked about the emergence of the Maurya Empire around 322 BCE shortly after the invasion of Alexander the Great as the first truly great Indian Empire it unifies most of the Indian subcontinent now that Empire eventually Falls and the next significant Empire to emerge especially if we talk about influence on India and the world is the Gupta Empire which emerges over 500 years later now let's zoom in on our timeline to get a deeper appreciation of the Gupta Empire it's believed that it start was with Shree Gupta he started the Gupta dynasty around 240 and it's disputed where they emerged it might have been in that region or in that region there's different accounts of where the Gupta dynasty initially emerged but even in the early 300s they really had a control of a few small kingdoms it wasn't until the reign of Chandragupta the first that it becomes a significant dynasty and we need to be careful don't confuse this chandra gupta the first with Chandragupta Maurya who founded the Maurya dynasty over 600 years before the time we're talking about chandra gupta the first it's interesting because he is really able to gain power not initially through conquest but through a marriage he has a marriage with the princess kumara Devi and as a dowry he's given control over much of this region of northeast India this region of mugga dharma gutta and I am always having trouble pronouncing that so my apologies including the famous city of potala patre which even in the time of the Maurya Empire and before the Maury Empire this was a famous seat of power but once he's in control of this region then he and his successors are able to have increased conquests over India you see in this light color what his son some would drag Gupta was able to do and then one of some would drag up the sons chandragupta ii is able to conquer even more but what makes the gupta empire distinctive isn't just that they were able to unify much or conquer much of india again what really makes them distinctive is because of that unification and especially the wealth that began to flow into the capital they were able to be sponsors of significant culture and science and the arts and that's why historians view the Gupta Empire as the Golden Age of India and just to get an appreciation for this the Gupta Empire was during the time of Kali Das and he is considered to be the greatest writer ever in the Sanskrit language he is like the William Shakespeare of Sanskrit beyond literature and writing you have significant contributions to science most notably Arya Botha he's known for a very accurate approximation of Pi but even more important a recognition that was an approximation and that he potentially recognized the irrationality of Pi one of the first to do so the word sine the trig function is derived from aryabhata's word for that function and so he established some of the early ideas of trigonometry he did work in summation he had did significant astronomical work recognizing the rotation of the earth at versus the rotation of the heavens he had an early concept of gravity even some of these notions of the place value system and zero and decimal notation many of our modern notions of it are traced back to RA abhava in other videos on the Islamic Golden Age when we talk about folks like Al car is me a lot of his work was based on what he learned from Aryabhata beyond the sciences and once again this is just a sample of all that happened during this period you have the significant Hindu epics the mahabharath the Ramayana the Puranas get written down and formalized you could say they were canonized the game of chess or the early version of the game of chess was invented called chaturanga and they had horsemen or which were the Knights they had infantry which were the pawns they had elephants which eventually turned into bishops but as it migrated to Persia the Muslim world and then into Europe it became our modern game of chess famously there's this iron pillar that is now in New Delhi that is traced back to the time of the Gupta Empire is believed to the reign of chandragupta ii and what's amazing about this this is a this is a pillar that's over 20 feet high made out of wrought iron and over 1500 1600 years it hasn't corroded and has inscriptions on it that help historians point to the Gupta Empire this was some of the coinage of the Gupta Empire so the big takeaway here is this was India's Golden Age the Classical period of India a lot of modern Hinduism and Indian culture can be traced back to this time period but it isn't just its influence on India in other videos we talk about the Islamic Golden Age and much of that golden age which emerges 2 3 400 years after the time after the Gupta Empire Falls much of that work is based on the discoveries and the work that is collected during the time of the Guptas and then that becomes a bridge eventually to the European Renaissance now like all empires the Gupta Empire does eventually fall in the mid 6th century it's believed around 540 550 and one of the main causes there's invasions cut from people called the who-knows-who historians believed are either the Huns or a group that are closely related to the Huns it's considered to be one of the causes of the eventual decline of the Gupta dynasty