The syllabus consists of six themes on The Ancient World - (i) The River Valley Civilizations, (ii) The Vedic Civilization, (iii) Mahavira & Buddha - Great Preachers, (iv) Rise of Kingdoms & Republicans, (v) The Mauryan Empire, and (vi) The Golden Age - Gupta Empire.
Theme 1: The River Valley Civilizations
'Civilization' - meaning
Reasons for settlement near rivers.
- Indus Valley
- Location (*Map)
- Social life - Family, Community
- Town Planning
- Art and (Craft) Architecture
- Religious Beliefs
Theme 2: The Vedic Civilization
Aryans in the Sapta Sindhu & Gangetic valley
‘Vedas’ and ‘Vedic’ - meaning
The four Vedas, Upanishads, Puranas
Epics Ramayana & Mahabharata
Brahmavarta (Early Vedic age)
- Political Organization
- Social life
- Economic life
Aryavarta (Later Vedic age)
- Political Org.
- Social Life
- Four Ashramas
Theme 3: Mahavira & Buddha - Great Preachers
Social conditions for rise of Jainism and Buddhism.
- Early life
- Teachings (Ahimsa, Caste system, Karma, Rebirth, Search for truth)
- Sub Sections of Jainism
- Early life
- Teachings (Four Noble Truths, Eight Fold Path, Ahimsa, Karma, Nirvana, Caste System)
- Sub Sections of Buddhism
A comparative study between Jainism and Buddhism
- Spread and Decline.
Theme 4: Rise of Kingdoms & Republicans
Introduction to terms - Janapadas & Mahajanapadas.
Mighty Kingdom of Magadha:
- Rulers (Bimbisara, Ajatashatru)
- Rule of Nandas
- Alexander’s Invasion
- Chandragupta Maurya (Brief Mention of his life before he became the ruler)
Theme 5: The Mauryan Empire
Sources: Indica & Arthashastra
- Role of Chanakya
Ashoka (Ascend to throne, extent of kingdom, Kalinga War, Welfare state)
Ashoka’s Dhamma & Edicts.
- With reference to Pataliputra
Mauryan Art and Economy
Theme 6: The Golden Age - Gupta Empire
Sources: The history of the Gupta Empire
Rulers of the Gupta Empire:
- Chandragupta I
- Chandragupta II
The Golden Age:
- Features / Characteristics
- Religious Life
- Scientific Progress
- Art, Architecture and Literature