Kuru Kingdom Facts: 11-20
11. These Painted Grey Ware settlements increased significantly in areas of Kaushambi and Hastinapur during the end of Later Vedic Period and the settlements gradually took the shape of towns.
12. The alliance between Puru and Bharata tribes led to the birth of Kuru tribe in Middle Vedic Period and Kurukshetra became their center of power.
13. The first Kuru capital was Āsandīvat which in modern day is Haryana’s Assandh. Later, Hastinapur and Indraprastha became the major cities of the Kurus and Hastinapur became their capital.
14. Atharvaveda praises the Kuru King Parikshit as a great ruler while Shatapatha Brahmana – a Late Vedic text praises his son Janamejaya as a great conqueror who performed horse sacrifice known as Ashvamedha.
15. Not very clear, it is believed that later the Kurus were defeated by the Salvas – a non-Vedic tribe and the Kurus were dispersed from Kuruksherta and as a result, the Vedic culture shifted its center to Uttar Pradesh’s Panchala realm. This defeat of the Kurus resulted in the decline of the Kurus and in Later Vedic Period, the Kurus shifted their capital to Kaushambi. This shift in capital was also because Hastinapur was destroyed by a flood. Another factor that resulted in this shift was upheavals in Kuru family.
16. In Late Vedic Period (c. 600 BCE) the Kuru Dynasty broke into branches and evolved into Kurus and Vasta janapadas. The Kurus ruled over the Upper Doab and the Vasta janapadas ruled over the Lower Doab. The Vasta janapadas further broke down into branches at Mathura and Kaushambi.
17. As far as the society in Kuru Kingdom was concerned, it was characterized by barley and rice settled farming, surplus production and specialized craftsmanship and artisanship.
18. The Atharvaveda is a text from the Kura era and Atharvaveda first mentions śyāma ayas (black metal) or iron.
19. It was during the Kuru Kingdom’s rule that the class system or varna system emerged that continues till date. The society was broken down into Brahmin (priesthood), Kshatriya (aristocracy), Vaishya and Shudra (the lowly non-Aryans). Brahmins and Kshatriyas dominated Vaishyas and Shudras.
20. It is worth mentioning that it was during the Kuru Kingdom that class was determined by birth. Prior to that in Early Vedic Period, class system did exist but just in form of idealized meta groups based on the work performed by people and it was not determined by birth. There was no discrimination whatsoever in Shudras hearing sacred Vedic words and participating in religious rituals.