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History of Andhra Pradesh

The history of Andhra Pradesh dates back to ancient times. It has mention in the famous Indian epics Mahabharata, Ramayana, the Jataka Tales and the Puranas. The glorious past of Andhra Pradesh is a result of the many different dynasties that have ruled the region. The influence of the rulers on the culture and tradition of this south Indian state have been immense.

Andhra Pradesh was created by combining the old princely state of Hyderabad with the Telugu speaking portions of the former state of Madras. Once upon a time it was a part of the Mauryan Empire during the reign of Ashoka, it became an important Buddhist centre.

It is still evident from the early Buddhist influence in places like Amravati, Nagarjunkonda(one of the archaeological sites in India), etc. After the death of Emperor Ashoka, the Satavahanas established their kingdom in this region. Later, it came in the hegamony of the Chalukyas and in the 10th century was engulfed by the Chola Kingdom.

Centuries ago, Andhra Pradesh was a major Buddhist centre and part of Emperor Ashoka's sprawling kingdom. Not surprisingly, traces of early Buddhist influence are still visible in several places in and around the state.

After the death of Emperor Ashoka, several dynasties from the Ikshvakus, Pallavas, Chalukyas, Kakatiyas, Vijayanagaram kings, Qutb Shahis, Mughals and the Asaf Jahi's, ruled this princely city.

The history of Andhra Pradesh dates back to the epic era of the Ramayana and the Mahabharatha. But the documented history points to 236 BC, when Satavahana established a kingdom and a dynasty around the modern Hyderabad.

During the reign of 450 years, Buddhism flourished in the kingdom. The rulers were followers of Brahmanism, but the women folk practiced Buddism. It was during this period that Buddhism spread from these shores to China, The far East and to Sri Lanka. The Ikshvakus succeeded the Satavahanas and ruled the kingdom for 57 years. The Pallavas annexed the area South of River Krishna and ruled till the end of 6th century.

Then came the dynasties of Chalukyas and the Kakatiyas. The Kakatiyas established themselves as rulers of a Telugu speaking people. The glorious reign of the Kakatiyas came to end in the 14th century and for the first time Telugus came under a Muslim regime that brought with it a totally different set of customs, language and religion.

The Delhi Sultanate came in power in 1347 AD, governed by Allahuddin Hasan, claiming lineage to Bahman Shah of Persia, revolted against the Delhi Sultanate and declared himself ruler of the southern part of the territory, comprising mainly the Deccan and Telangana area.

These reigns accounted for the Hindu school of thought. Subsequently, it witnessed the sway of Muslim rulers in the 14th century and in 1713 A.D. it passed into the hands of a commander of the Mughal army under Aurangzeb. Finally, it succumbed to the rule of the hereditary monarchs called the Nizams of Hyderabad and remained with them till India attained independence.

Successive dynasties from the Ikshvakus, Pallavas, Chalukyas, Kakatiyas, Vijayanagaram kings, Qutb Shahis, Mughals and the Asaf Jahis, have contributed significantly to the State's rich cultural tapestry and have left behind a heritage studded with spectacular monuments, temples, mosques, palaces all vibrant with arts, crafts, dance and literature.

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