changing map of India from 1 AD to the 20th century :
were fought, territories were drawn and re-drawn. An amateur historian
has caught these shifts in a series of maps.
history is speckled with the ruins of empires. Kingdoms have periodically
risen here, expanded and fallen, reshaping with them the region’s
culture and identity.
Amateur historian Thomas Lessman, who
has been researching world history for over 20 years, has created a
series of maps of India showing these shifts from 1 AD till the rule
of the Delhi Sultanate. On his website Lessman says he “became
frustrated while researching history because it's hard to find great
maps. The best maps are in books that cost more than I make in a week...
So I realised if I want free World History Maps, I’d have to make
The maps provide a vivid history tour.
They start from the time the Sakas or Indo-Scythians firmly established
their presence in India.
Indo-Parthian and Indo-Synthian era: 1 AD
Indo-Greeks ruled India for over two centuries, during which time the
fusion of Indian and Hellenistic influences flourished. This map shows
the Indo-Parthian rule and the Indo-Synthian kingdom. The Indo-Scythians
were descendents of the Scythians who had migrated from southern Siberia
and displaced the Indo-Greeks.
Kushan Empire: 100 AD
The Kushan Empire was founded under
Kujula Kadphises but it was under his grandson, the Buddhist emperor
Kanishka, that it reached its peak. Kanishka expanded the kingdom till
as far as Varanasi and captured areas in present-day China.
Gupta and Huna Empire – 400 - 500 AD
This was the period of the domination
of the Gupta Empire, referred to by some as the Golden Age of India.
During this time, literature, art, astronomy and math flourished in
the region and much of the subcontinent was unified under one kingdom.
The Huna Empire extended from parts of eastern Iran to northwestern
India. This proximity is the reason why, some believe, the Huna tribe
finds a mention in the Mahabharat.
After the collapse of the Gupta Empire,
a minor line of the clan ruled in Magadha. Down south, the Kalabhras
Chalukyas ruled southern and central India from the 6th century to the
12th century. Kannada and Telugu literature thrived in this era, as
did Chalukyan architecture. In the north, the Chachas dynasty began
ruling over Sindh by 700 AD.
Gurjar-Pratihara dynasty, in 900 AD, spread its kingdom from Rajasthan
to the east in India. Meanwhile, the Deccan was under the Rashtrakuta
The Ghaznavid Empire gradually moved
in and conquered India and later the Delhi Sultanate, a Delhi-based
Muslim kingdom that stretched over large parts of India from 1206–1526,
the fall of which eventually led to the Mughal rule in the country.
1500 AD, the Rajput states had established their presence. The Vijayanagar
Empire in the south was still strong.