About the Book
In ancient times India's cultural contacts extended to a wide region all over Asia. Its beginning go back a long way in time and its is almost certain that the results seen today were, in the main, not achieved by military expeditions but by peaceful trading and religious teaching, and there-by all the more permanent. The great cultural movement accompanied with political settlement in the beginning of the Christian era or even earlier, effected by the ancient Hindus in those far-off lands, could; be known to their descendants about eighteen hundred years later, i. e., in the beginning of the twentieth century and this in itself speaks of the complete lack of evidence in Indian sources regarding the marvelous achievements of their forefather.
But, archaeological and literary accounts clearly confirm that the earliest Hindu settlers reached and settled in different regions in the beginning of the Christian era, i.e., about second century A. D. and gradually implanted their own culture on the soil of the country of their adoption. It is now established beyond doubt that this unique civilization was an all-India affair and the adventures both from north and south India had an equal hand in effecting this revolution. But, their great leaders are still unknown to history though sometimes we do have stray references to some of them in traditions and legends.
The present monograph deals with some of the problems hitherto unknown and reinterprets them in the light of the new materials brought to light by excavators and indologists in recent years. The following pages embody the result of careful study and investigation which, though not exhaustive, nonetheless, throw light for the first time on some of the intricate aspects connected with early history and culture of South-East and East Asia which will no doubt serve as a guideline to the serious researchers in the field.
About the Author
Dr. Upendra Thakur has been working as University Professor and Head of the Department of Ancient Indian and Asian Studies for well over seventeen years at the Magadh University, Both gaya (Bihar).
A widely travelled scholar, Professor Thakur has so far visited the major countries of the world including Yugoslavia, Germany, Italy, Austria, Russia, England and Egypt (1969); Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Indonesia, Burma (1972, 1979 & 1984); Australia (1979), Malaysia (1980), Japan (1981), U. S. A. and England (1981), Sri Lanka (1982), Kathmandu (1985) and many other countries of the world in connection with lecture tours and international conferences and seminars.
Professor Thakur also worked as General Secretary of the Numismatic Society of India from 1977 to 1982 and as Chief editor of the JNSI from 1983 to 1985. He is also vice-Chairman of the Bihar Research Society, Patna and Chief Editor of the JBRS; Chief Editor, Proc. Of the International Buddhist Brotherhood Association (IBBA), Japan and Chief Editor, Mithila Bharati (Maithili), Maithili Akademi, Patna. Associated with many learned bodies in India and abroad, he is also member of the Explorers Club, New York, U. S. A. and recipient of the Akbar Silver Medal of the NSI for his outstanding contributions to Indian Numismatics.
Dr. Thakur has published several books and more than one hundred and fifty research articles.
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