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890 BC–322 BC
Location of the Pauravas relative to other groups: the Audumbaras, the Kunindas, the Vemakas, the Vrishnis, the Yaudheyas and the Arjunayanas.
Capital Hastinapur
Government Not specified
 •  Established 890 BC
 •  Disestablished 322 BC

Pauravas (Sanskrit: पौरव) was an ancient kingdom in the northwest Indian subcontinent, dating from at least 890 BC to 322 BC. The history of the Pauravas is contained in Hindu historical and religious texts.

In the 8th century BCE, the capital Hastinapur, was destroyed by a severe flood and King Nikasu built a new capital, Kosambi. With the rise of the Mahajanapada powers, the state fell into a steady decline during 5th and 4th centuries BCE.[1]

The origin of the Pauravas royals is quite ancient and pre-dates the Hindu epic, Mahabharata, which documents and is a main source of much of its history. The Hindu kings who descended from the Hindu God Chandra ("moon") were called Chandravanshi (or "of the lunar dynasty"). Yayati was a Chandravanshi king, with Puru and Yadu as two of his many sons. They were the founders of two main branches of the Chandravamsha; the Yadus, or Yadavas, were descendants of Yadu, and Pauravas were descendants of Puru.

The Pauravas had also existed earlier in the Vedic Ages.[citation needed] They were led by King Sudas, who fought off Persian invaders at the Battle of the Ten Kings.[citation needed]

The Pauravas were situated on or near the Indus river, where their monarchs grew rich and prosperous through trade. The Persian kings Darius and Xerxes claimed suzerainty over many of the Pauravas, but this claim was loose at best.[citation needed] The most powerful royal families, led by Ambhi and Porus, were conquered by the Greek Emperor Alexander the Great in 326 BC.[citation needed] Porus fought a fierce last stand against Alexander at the Battle of the Hydaspes. Alexander was not able to conquer the entire area due to his army refusing to fight the Nanda Empire further east. By 322 BCE, the region had been conquered by Chandragupta Maurya, a teenage adventurer from taxila, Gandhara and student of chanakya who later conquered the Nanda Empire and founded the Indian Maurya Empire which covered and stretched from the whole of present day Afghanistan, Pakistan, across to Bangladesh and northern Burma.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Warder, A K. "Indian Buddhism". 2001 (4th) Ed.