Author Topic: Any recommendations for sources on Gupta armies?  (Read 264 times)

DBS

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Any recommendations for sources on Gupta armies?
« on: March 18, 2021, 05:39:35 PM »
Apologies if this seems a dumb or lazy question.  Yes, I have access to plenty of army lists.  Question is more regarding likely appearance of troop types.  I get the impression more armour than classical Indian, but not necessarily taken to cataphract style extremes.   

Drifting towards the question having been looking heavily at the Sasanian period eastern polities - Kushan, Kushano Sassanid, Chionite/Kidarite , Hepthalite, Alkhan, etc, and of course that leads to the Guptas... and the realisation of my ignorance.

David
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David Stevens

Duncan Head

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Re: Any recommendations for sources on Gupta armies?
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2021, 08:04:11 PM »
I don't think I have read anything much specifically on the Guptas - though this book might be useful - but of course they get coverage in all the general books on Indian history and warfare.

There are quite a few images of Gupta-era warriors here. The Ajanta cave paintings, some shown on that page, are contemporary, produced by the Vākāṭaka rulers who were apparently allies of the Gupta, and the warriors shown are probably similar to the Guptas. There are plenty of illustrated books on Ajanta.

The Gupta gold coinage has some nice pieces. The "Gupta Emperor with a bow on the chest" on the previous site is I think not actually Gupta, but a coin of the Hephthalite ruler Toramana, copying Gupta styles; but the other ones shown are Gupta. Many of them have portraits of armed rulers, so are good for weapons, horse-furniture etc. Alternatively try http://coinindia.com/galleries-chandragupta2.html.

Gupta costume discussed here.

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DBS

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Re: Any recommendations for sources on Gupta armies?
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2021, 08:23:50 PM »
Thank you, very helpful.  I had found some images, but was hesitant about the confidence with which they could be attributed to the Guptas as opposed to, as you pointed out, possible/probable Hunnic (Alkhan?) or Hunnic influenced northern dynasties.  I realise that there quite likely was a lot of mutual influence, but suspected others had trod this path before.  I have ordered the book as it was pretty cheap by current standards.
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Jim Webster

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Re: Any recommendations for sources on Gupta armies?
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2021, 08:01:30 PM »
Thank you, very helpful.  I had found some images, but was hesitant about the confidence with which they could be attributed to the Guptas as opposed to, as you pointed out, possible/probable Hunnic (Alkhan?) or Hunnic influenced northern dynasties.  I realise that there quite likely was a lot of mutual influence, but suspected others had trod this path before.  I have ordered the book as it was pretty cheap by current standards.

I thought that as well so I've ordered a copy
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DBS

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Re: Any recommendations for sources on Gupta armies?
« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2021, 12:14:08 PM »
Well into the book, an interesting if sometimes convoluted read, but I need to have an atlas to hand, since it is written by an Indian academic who assumes (not unreasonably) the same knowledge of relative Indian geography as I might assume knowledge of English counties...  :P
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