Home : Indian Coins : Early punchmarked coinage (600-100 BC) : Mauryan Empire (321-187 BC) : Chandragupta Maurya (ca.321-297 BC) : Early punch silver drachm w/cobra, Chandragupta (ca. 321-297 BC), Pataliputra mint, Mauryan Kingdom, Ancient India (G/H 484)

Early punch silver drachm w/cobra, Chandragupta (ca. 321-297 BC), Pataliputra mint, Mauryan Kingdom, Ancient India (G/H 484)

Early punch silver drachm w/cobra, Chandragupta (ca. 321-297 BC), Pataliputra mint, Mauryan Kingdom, Ancient India (G/H 484)

Five punched symbols: Sun, 6-armed symbol, Chandragupta's symbol and two other symbol (see below) / A number of small bankers' marks. 16mmx19mm, 3.29 grams. Pataliputra mint. Gupta/Hardaker Series 5 I A 103 (#484); MACW 4158.

Chandragupta Maurya (born ca. 323 BCE, ruled c. 320298 BCE died about 298 BCE) was the founder of the Maurya Empire. Chandragupta succeeded in conquering most of the Indian subcontinent. Chandragupta, the first Mauryan king, claimed descent from Shakya clan of the Kshatriya varna. Having defeated the Greek satrap in the Khyber mountains around 303 B.C., Chandragupta was crowned King at Taxila. As a result, Chandragupta is considered the first unifier of India and its first genuine emperor. Prior to Chandragupta's consolidation of power, small regional kingdoms dominated the northwestern subcontinent, while the Nanda Dynasty dominated the middle and lower basin of the Ganges. After Chandragupta's conquests, the Maurya Empire extended from Bengal and Assam in the east, to Afghanistan and Balochistan in the west, to Kashmir and Nepal in the north, and to the Deccan Plateau in the south. His achievements, which ranged from conquering Alexander the Great's Macedonian satrapies in the northwest and conquering the Nanda Empire by the time he was only about 20 years old, to defeating Seleucus I Nicator and establishing centralized rule throughout South Asia, remain some of the most celebrated in the history of India. Over two thousand years later, the accomplishments of Chandragupta and his successors, including Ashoka the Great, are objects of great study in the annals of South Asian and world history.

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