Indian Traders had trading colonies all all over the Horn of Africa, stretching as far as Zanzibar (c.f - Kalayavana)

The archaeological proof of this is found in the Soqotra Island Inscriptions off the coast of Yemen.

In Hoq Cave, we found 192 graffiti in Brahmi Script.
A Trishula like symbol was also found in the Hoq cave, this fits the narrative of the cave having religious significance for the Indian Traders who lived in their colony off the Yemen coast.
Names of Indian Settlers in Arabia in the early 2-4th century CE.
The trading map for the Indian Ocean Networks
We already know from plays that Indians knew of lands in Africa and even had colonies there. So this archaeological evidence of Indian settlement in Yemen in 2-4th century CE without a doubt strengthens these stories.

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More from @sukarma0

10 Jan
Hindu Art of the Kushana Empire. On the left is the Varāha Avatara (2nd century CE). Right is a sandstone bust of Vāsudeva (2nd century CE).

Now, I can confident very few will be even aware Kushana made anything other than Buddhist Art. Why so?
Head of Balarāma with snake canopy (Left)

Ardhanarashiva, Vishnu, Gajalakshmi and Kubera (Right)

Kushana Hindu Art, made at Mathura. (2nd century CE, sandstone)
Hindu God Kartikeya, second century CE. Kushana Art.
Read 6 tweets
10 Jan
The Kushana Empire was founded by Mahārājādhirāja Kujula Kadphises, a Shaivite Hindu convert from his ancestral Steppe religion of the Yüeh-chih. He was not a Buddhist, as popularly believed.

A thread on the Hindu Emperors of the Kushana Dynasty.
The Kushanas were part of a tribal confederation called the Yüeh-Chih that originally lived in the western part of the Gansu Province of China. They were pushed west by the invasions of the Xiongnu (Huna) confederation. Kuja Kadphises united all the five sub-tribes under Kushana.
Emperor Kuja Kadphises had converted to Shaivism, a Mathura inscription from the Tōkrī Tīla mound (Maṭ village) clears up previous confusion (Based on him being called "satyadharmasthita" or 'steadfast in the true dharma' people speculated he was a Buddhist)

This is incorrect.
Read 13 tweets
4 Jan
Thread on best books + readers to learn Sanskrit. I will list only books I have read & their pros and cons.

1. Samskrita Bharati (4 Part Series)

This is by far the best structured english course to learn to read, speak & write Sanskrit. The material is well-structured. ImageImage
... and grammar is introduced at apt phases. There is enough Sanskrit text to immerse yourself & best part is they have accompanying online/in-person courses entirely in Sanskrit. This is the best method to learn spoken Sanskrit.
2. Svayam Sanskrit Shikshak (Hindi)

This is the second best immersive-learning series. There are 2 parts and progression is gradual. The advantage is it is entirely in Hindi, so the 1:1 syntax + vocab connect for native speakers is instant, Hindi being a daughter of Sanskrit. ImageImage
Read 16 tweets
2 Jan
Interesting to note, the Ancient Indians had 4 names and so did the Ancient Romans. (4 naming system)

Ancient Indians
nakṣatra - (star constellation name),
guhya - secret name,
prakāśa - public name
yajñiya - noteworthy/sacrifical
Ancient Romans

Praenomen – Personal Name

Nomen – Genus Name

Cognomen – Family Name, that of your narrower family group within the tribe (think of it like the modern surname)

Agnomen – Noteworthy Name (given due to heroic valorous acts), cognomen ex virtue.
The Ancient Indian names are discussed by Sāyanācārya

"नक्षत्रनाम गुह्यं नाम प्रकाशं नामेति त्रीणी नामानि सोमयाजि इति तुरीयं नाम तञ्च यज्ञियम्“

This is in the commentary on ऋग्वेद ८ ८ ९

Read more here–…
Read 4 tweets
24 Dec 20
Short Thread on Austroasiatic Indian Tribes

A common myth is thinking Austro-Asiatic tribals in India like the Mundari, Ho or Santali are aboriginal or "first inhabitants" or "aadi-vaasi" of India.

They are very recent (3-4 kya) Austro-Asiatic immigrants from South-East Asia.
Their patrilineal haplogroup O2a-M95 is from east, south-east asia. Around 65-70% of Munda speakers have this, indicating patrilineal descent from migrants. Gond, Nihali could possibly be of of the same stock too, who had a language shift.
South Munda have a 73% frequency of O2a, whilst it is at 62% for North Munda. The admixture event date is 3-4kya for South Munda and 1.5-2kya for North Munda.
Read 5 tweets
18 Dec 20
Indian merchants in 6-7th centuries went to Zanzibar to trade in Ivory. Some of them even ended up settling there and had lived their lives in the colony, conducting trade with merchants from India.

Daṇḍin had a story about a merchant named Kāla-Gupta living in kalayavanadvīpa
मुनिवर! कालयवननाम्नि द्वीपे कालगुप्तो नाम धनाढ्यो वैश्यवरः कश्चिदस्ति
तन्नन्दिनीं नयनानन्दकारिणीं सुवृत्तां

“O Best of Sages, In an island by the name of kāla-yavana a [merchant] vaiśya by the name of kāla-gupta lived.
वाणिज्यरूपेण कालयवनद्वीपमुपेत्य कामपि वणिक्कन्यकां परिणीय

As a trader, I had set out for the kāla-yavana island and married some daughter of another merchant [there]. With her I was returning, in the ocean, not far from the bank indeed our ship was wrecked.
Read 5 tweets

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