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Religious Systems in Ancient India
Author : Prashant Srivastava
ISBN : 978-81-942937-3-6
Edition : 2020
Language : English
Size & Pages : 25, cmm, pp 200
Publisher : Agam Kala Prakashan
Format : Hardbound
Price : Rs. 950/-


The Author
Dr Prashant Srivastava (BA Honours, MA, PhD, DLitt) is Professor, and former Head,
Department of Ancient Indian History and Archaeology, University of Lucknow, Lucknow. He has
been awarded four gold medals (BA Honours—one; MA—two; DLitt—one). He is the author of
15 books, including Joint Coin-types of Ancient India (Varanasi, 1990); Aspects of Ancient Indian
Numismatics (Delhi, 1996); Coins of Ancient India (Lucknow, 1997, jointly with Professor K K
Thaplyal); Art Motifs on Ancient Indian Coins (New Delhi, 2004); The Apracharajas (Delhi, 2007);
Gleanings in Ancient Indian Numismatics (Delhi, 2014); and Successors of the Mauryas (Delhi,
2017). He is one of the editors of History and Heritage: Essays in Honour of Professor K K
Thaplyal (3 volumes, Delhi, 2007); A Bouquet of Indian Heritage : Research and Management (2
volumes, Delhi, 2015); and Indian Culture and Art: Continuity and Change (2 volumes, Delhi,
2015). He served as an assistant editor of Aitihya, a research journal of Ancient History and
Culture (Delhi). He has also contributed over 70 research papers in reputed journals, and about
two dozen popular articles on ancient Indian history in magazines and newspapers. In 2006, he
was awarded a major research project by the University Grants Commission, New Delhi, for a
period of three years, and his Encyclopaedia of Indian Coins (Ancient Coins of Northern India, up
to circa 650 AD) (2 volumes, Delhi, 2012), has evolved out of the same project report submitted
to the University Grants Commission.
The Book
Religion has played an important rôle in man’s life, since times immemorial. A number of
religious systems had their origin in ancient India, and she played host to a number of religious
systems, which had their origins in other countries. The present work begins with religious life,
beliefs, and philosophy, of the Harappan and vedic peoples, and goes on to deal with the
heterodox sects—Jainism, Buddhism, Ājīvikism, and the doctrines of some other heretical
teachers, and epic-puranic sects—Vaishṇavism, Śaivism, Śāktism, and other sects and religious
The last four chapters are dedicated to religious systems, from ‘across the borders’ of
India—Zoroastrianism, Greek religion, Christianity, and Islam, which have been discussed, in
some detail. The numismatic evidence, for the worship of certain Roman and Alexandrian deities,
and Oriental deities, has been briefly presented, under two separate appendices. These are
usually missing in books, dealing with religious history in ancient India, although they were, very
much, a part of the religious life of ancient Indians.
The book, aimed primarily at undergraduate and postgraduate students, has not been burdened
with bibliographical references, in the form of footnotes or endnotes: A Select Bibliography, at the
end, is meant to indicate sources of study, and to suggest further reading.
Front Jacket Illustration:
Maheśa-mūrti, Elephanta (Courtesy: The Archaeological Survey of India).
ISBN: 978-81-942937-3-6
` 950/-

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