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Art and Architecture
(a) Some finely executed one or more animal figures, such as, the lion or the elephant.
(b) The sacred Dharmachakra symbol engraved with sculptures in relic.
(c) The inverted lotus.
Lions, horses and graceful deer on the Ashokan pillars speak highly of the Mauryan sculpture.
Few terms of Mauryan period
1. Weights and Measures: Pautava
2. Slaughter house: Suna
3. Gambling: Dyuta
4. Port: Paltana
5. Passports: Mudra
6. Agriculture: Sita
7. Spinning and Weaving Industry: Sutra
8. Forest products: Kupya
9. Commerce: Panya
10. Accountant general in charge of the two offices of Currency and Accounts: Akshapataladhyaksha
11. Director of Agriculture: Sitadyaksha
12. Pulses: Mudga and Masha
13. Linseed: Kalaya, Atasi
14. Mustard: Sharshapa
15. Wheat: Godhuma
16. Sugarcane: Ikshu
17. Fodder: Haritaka
18. Gardens: Vata
19. Superintendent of Mines: Akaradhyaksha
20. Warden of Marches: Antapala
21. Disabled Women: Nayanga
22. Jute: Kshuma
23. Silka: Dukula
24. Wool of deer: Rankava
25. Cotton: Karpasa
26. Grazing ground for cattle: Vraja
27. Wool: Rauma
28. Nalika: was equal to 24 minutes
Terms related to Revenue
1. Sita: Crown land
2. Bhaga: the share of agriculture produce payable to the state as revenue.
3. Bali: A general land tax
4. Kara: Tax on orchards
5. Vanik: Tax on merchandise
6. Tara: Ferry charges
7. Nava: Tax payable to the superintendent of shipping
8. Vivita: Tax on pasture-lands
9. Vartani: Road cess
10. Rajju: Cess payable for settlement to the rural offices called Vishaya-pala.
11. Chora-Rajju: Police tax to be collected at the village.
Causes of Decline of Mauryan Empire
Scholars have expressed different opinions regarding the downfall of the Mauryas.
1. H.P. Sastri states that Ashoka’s patronage to Buddhism, his disregard to ritualism and sacrifices, his appointment of Dhamma-Mahamatras and deliberate humiliation of the Mahamatras etc. gave rise to a reaction which was carried to success by the Brahmana Commander-in-Chief Pushyamitra.
2. Another school of historians point out that the basic cause of the down-fall was Ashoka’s policy of Ahimsa or non-violence which reduced the martial spirit of soldiers and thereby the fighting strength of army which ultimately made it incapable to fight against the Greek invaders or suppress the revolts of provincial governers. Dr. H.C. Raychaudhary has supported this view.
3. According to Kausambi the primary cause was its financial weakness.
4. The succession of weak kings after Ashoka and division of the empire into two parts, were the causes of the decline.
5. Dr. Romila Thapar puts forth the view that the absence of the ideal of one state or one nation were responsible for the down fall of the Mauryas.
6. The Greek invasion of the north-west, which could not be checked due to political disunity, was yet another important factor.