Iranian and Macedonian Invasions (6th century B.C)

The Iranian ruler Darius penetrated into northwestern India in 516 B.C.  it became 20th province or satrapy. This satrapy included Sindh, northwest frontier and part of Punjab. Indo iranian contacts lasted for about 200 years. It gave an impetus Indo-iranian trade and commerce. Iranian scribes brought writing form called Kharoshthi script (right-left like arabic). Even some Ashokan inscription in northwestern India are in the same script. Iranian influence on the Mauryan sculpture is evident from the bell-shaped capitals of Ashokan times.   Under the leadership of Alexander, the Greeks destroyed the Iranian empire. Alexander was tempted to invade India because of its wealth and geographical regions. He marched to india through the khyber pass. Alexander invasion provided the first occasion where ancient india came in contact with ancient europe. His campaign opened up four distinct routes by land and sea, increasing facility of trade. Alexander’s historians have left valuable geographic information clearly dated campaign which enable us to build Indian chronology. And important information about social and economic conditions.

Sample UPSC Prelims Question

Consider the following statements:

  1. Punch marked coins came to india as result of iranian contacts
  2. Art of carpentry was introduced by greeks in india

Which of the following is correct?

  1. 1 only
  2. 2 only
  3. Both
  4. None

Answer: D

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