Dialogue  July-September,  2011, Volume 13 No.1


Ancient Merv- the Queen of the World and its link with India

Sunita Dwivedi*

The greatest international route which formed a conduit between the East and the West connecting the continents of Asia and Europe had as its bulwark the ancient cities of Turkmenistan nestling in the plains between the Kopet Dagh  and the Karakum Desert. Since ancient times this land was called the ‘crossroad of world paths’ and the land of converging cultures, trade and religions. Trade routes coming from China in the East, Europe in the West, Russia in the North and India in the South met here. The ancient cities viz. Gurganj,  Merv, Amul, Zemm, Abiverd, Dehistan, Nisa, Sarakhs  were the jewels that strung the necklace of the Silk Road through the territory of the great land of the Turkmens.

But the jewel of jewels,  Merv came to be known as the ‘Queen of the World’. It was in the ancient Merv region called Mouru, Mouram, Margiana, spreading over thousands of hectares, having numerous settlements in its oases and watered by the Murghab river, that one of the largest and most magnificent city of the of the world took its root. It was here that the great civilization of Margiana, believed by scholars to be on par with the civilizations of Mesopotamia and Harrappa, is said to have existed; where the Rig Vedic haoma was prepared as libation for the Gods; where the Great Zarathustra is believed to have lived and preached; where stupas were erected and the Noble Buddha worshipped and where illustrious monks studied the holy texts; where the great warriors like Alexander and Seleucus Nicator established their cities and the Sultans like the illustrious Sultan Sanjar set up their cultural capital.

It is said that the earliest Merv, the centre of the sacred province of  Margiana was a brilliant Bronze Age civilization that lay hidden for thousands of years within the layers of the dry Karakum. It needed the genius, vision and the spade of archaeologists to reveal its glories to the world. The barren desert that we see north of Marv is the bed where river channels once ran  and a flourishing green country existed with an urban culture. Far from being a desert land in the dry and desolate Karakum, the Trans-Caspian region in which Margiana lay was a green zone as the  etymology drawn by Edvard Rtveladze [in ‘Civilization, States and Cultures of Central Asia] of  ‘Margiana’ in the word ‘Marg’ meaning a meadow or a ground grassed over.

According to Edvard Rtveladze1 an extensive network of land and sea routes had emerged as early as the III-II millennium BC which connected the various civilizations across Asia from West to East from the plains of Mesopotamia to the Indus valley, and from North to South from the deserts of Central Asia to the Arabian Sea. These routes formed the main thoroughfares for trade and subsequently came to be known as the Silk Road as silk formed the bulk of the commodities being traded. This system of roads Rtveladze termed as ‘Mesopotamian- Harappan’, from the two civilizations which contributed most to it. The highpoint of this road network was the highly developed land of  Ancient Merv, Mauru, Margiana in the Murgab River Delta of South Turkmenistan which directly connected with routes to China through Bukhara and Samarkand; to Russia through the Karakum or along the Amudarya; to India through Afghanistan.

Strategic Highway to the Caspian  

Ancient Merv, the great centre of trade, art and religion was on the world map due to its strategic position on the ‘Caspian Route’2.  Towards the north roads led from Merv to Khorezm by crossing the Karakum or joining Chardzhou and following the Amu Darya. From Khorezm the road joined the one over the Caspian to reach Astrakhan and onwards to Russia in the North and Europe in the West; towards the Northeast roads led through Bukhara and Samarkand  and onwards through Ferghana to China; towards the East to Balkh  and connecting via the Uttarapath through Kabul and Taxila into India; towards the Southwest through Sarakhs and Nishapur into Iran and  along the Caspian to Turkey and onwards to Europe; Towards the West the road ran through Nisa and  across the Caspian to join the road to Syria and Turkey and onwards to Europe.

It has been pointed out that the Caspian Highway was the most favoured route by the Indians trading with the Black Sea region3. It is said that the route from Kapisa to Bactria through Bamiyan was linked with the highway going to Merv. It was the oldest and the most frequented route.  The importance of Taxila-Kapisa-Merv route increased during the Achaemenian period when Punjab was its satrapy and during the Seleucid period when it became the Royal Highway to the west. The Caspian route into Black Sea and Mediterranean regions also opened Turkmenistan and other Central Asian countries for Indian migrants.

The Indians who gained access into Turkmenistan are recorded to have traded on the Caspian and beyond in the territory of Russia upto modern times4. Indian trade with Central Asia continued upto recent times leading to cultural and political exchanges, as pointed out by Claude Markovits in ‘Indian Merchants in Central Asia’5. Stephen Dale’s ‘Indian Merchants and Eurasian Trade 1600-1750 and Scott Levi’s ‘The Indian Diaspora in Central Asia and its Trade 1550-1900’ and Claude Markovits ‘The Global Work of Indian Merchants 1750-1947: Traders of Sind from Bukhara to Panama’  all inform us of the trade between India and Central Asia which played an important role in the commercial life of Central Asia. According to Dale’s estimate the size of the Indian trading community was in tens of thousands while Levi has estimated it to be 35,000 traders or more. Dale also emphasises the existence of Indian commercial firms which had large capital resources. It is said that clusters of Multani traders from Punjab and Marwaris from Rajasthan in India were settled in the 17th and 18th century in Astrakhan, the port city of the Caspian6.

That so many Indians were favouring the Caspian region for trade shows the trading capacity of the region, the  profits that could be made, the relative safety of the routes, and most importantly, that a secular atmosphere was prevailing so that the people of all religions could have peaceable trade with their counterparts in the region. It also shows that the region was not such a desertified zone in the sense that it now appears to be; where life was comfortable with means of water, food, caravan animals, milch cattle and agriculture to support thousands and thousands of trading caravans  that passed that way and halted at numerous stations.

Bronze Age Settlements in Margiana

Spread over an immense area,  Ancient Merv is recorded by archaeologists and historians to have a history of  atleast five thousand years being occupied as far back as the beginning of the third millennium BC. The earliest structures at Merv date to the early Achaemenid period [sixth to the fifth century BC]. In Alexander’s time it was  known as Margiana. Under the  Sassanians  it became  a place where world religions interacted and existed peacefully.  It was the capital of the eastern Islamic territories and a centre for trade during the Ummayad and early Abbasid periods. Merv reached its greatest heights during the time of the Seljuk Turks who made it their capital and the greatest city of the Islamic world. Today Ancient Merv has been listed by the UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.

According to Rtveladze7 the occupation of the region began in the Neolithic and Eneolithic periods. By the second millennium BC  many settlements arose in the region. The five earliest settlements in the northern part of the oasis were found to be Kelleli, Adji Kui, Taip, Gonur and Togoluk which were found by excavators to show evidence of Bronze Age Margiana. The largest and well preserved site in the Murgab Delta is the Gonur depe and the Togoluk sites where large fortified buildings were excavated.

A series of excavations in the Merv region brought to light monumental fortresses, palaces and temples on the basis of which it was concluded that a magnificent civilization existed along the Murghab river in the Karakum. Viktor Sarianidi [in ‘Margush’] calls it the ‘Fifth Centre of the world civilization’ competing with the oldest ones of China, India, Mesopotamia and Egypt. According to Rtveladze indicators of Merv’s development of civilization was the migration of peoples, including Indians, mainly from the Gandhara region, contributing to its cultural and economic progress. In the 1st AD migration of Indians to Central Asia  involved not only Bactria but also Margiana, says Rtveladze8.

Wide-ranging Ties with India  

We learn from Sarianidi, who led excavations at Margiana9 that the country  in antiquity was known throughout the Middle East, in the lands between the Tigris and the Euphrates to the Indus Valley and from Amu Darya to the Persian Gulf. The close interaction with such remote lands was mainly due to caravan trade which led to cultural and political contacts10. But first and foremost the closest ties were available with  the Indian sub-continent. As according to B.B. Kumar cultural and trading relations between Central Asia and the Indian sub-continent were closer than hitherto described by many contemporary researchers.11    

The ‘Margus’ throws light on the close ties of Margiana with the Indus Valley. Analogues of Gonur ceramics and vessels were found in settlements of ancient Indian Harappan civilization. They include articles of ivory found on Margush territory and said to be imported from the Indian subcontinent. Adornments in the form of faience circles with cogs on the edges and faience seals  found in Margiana were known in the Harappa. From the Gonur citadel was recovered a painted vessel which probably originated in Balochistan.  

In Seistan archaeologists discovered in  the grave of a local saint Godari Shakh stone diminutive columns and stony weights like those found in Marginian temples. In adjacent Pakistan in Quetta, capital of Balochistan at the building site of a hotel a grave disclosed gifts including diminutive columns, silver and gold vessels like the ones found in Margiana.

Pins with heads in the form of clenched fist or necklaces with pendants in the shape of snake's head discovered in the Gonur necropolis have been a popular motif in India.

Echoes of the Rig Veda

We hear the echoes of the Rig Vedic hymns in the oasis of Ancient Merv. Reading the monumental work of  Victor Sarianidi, one is reminded of the subject of the Rig Veda and the divine nature and merits of the haoma  and the possibility that such settlers of the third millennium BC might have knowledge of the divinity and merits of the sacred haoma whose praises were sung in the Rig Veda.12 

It was in this settlement in the ancient country of Margush that the exciting discoveries13 of narcotics like poppy and hemp in huge vessels and drinking bone tubes, special underground furnaces and drainage for waste water and cult figurines leave no doubt in our minds that the ancient people were preparing ritual intoxicating divine drinks about which we find mention in the Rig Veda. Sarianidi came up with amazing discoveries while investigating a fire temple, a palace and a large necropolis, where he discovered gold jewellery, stone statuettes and seal stones with various mythological scenes, high quality ceramics, bone objects and other articles.

The monumental temples, believed to be of the ancient-Zoroastrian types14 were found in Togolok -21. Which according to the archaeologists testify to a highly developed civilization in Margiana representing one of the advanced centres of the Ancient East in the 2nd millennium BC.

In the settlements of Togolok 1 and Togolok 21, arrangements appeared to be made for making the intoxicating drink haoma15 which was used in religious rites and arrangements for sacrificing animals and letting their blood flow through the ceramic lined gutters. There are indications of large number of people gathering during religious festivals. Tubs coated with plasters with residues of narcotic were found. Even mortars and pestles  had traces of poppy and ephedra. There are indications that huge fires were lighted. According to archaeologists all these suggested a Zoroastrian cult of fire worship.

In the centre of a sacred place called ‘temenos’16 was also found a  round ritual pool  where worshippers performed their ablutions before commencing religious ceremonies. Similar purifying pools were found in Harappan civilization in the Indus Valley but nowhere else in Central Asia showing that the Margushians had close connections with the Indus Valley17.

Horse Trading Centre at Merv

It is said that India’s major imports from Central asia consisted of horses in the 17th century18 and that the bulk of the supply of the horses to India was produced by pastoral nomads in the Turkoman wastes east of the Caspian Sea, and further to the south-east in Afghan Turkistan19. The Italian traveller Niccolo Manucci provides a high figure of 100,000 horse being annually exported to India from Central Asia in the 17th century.20 India was said to be the largest market for Central Asian horses.

If we view the findings at the archaeological site of the Merv oasis of the evidence of horse breeding and training centres in the oasis region21 it can be said that East of the Caspian in the delta of the Murgab river conditions were favourable to raise good horses for export to India in large numbers. Since ancient times best horses in the world came from Merv. We read in Sarianidi about the evidence of horse breeding and training in Ancient Merv . The discoveries  in the southern suburbs of Gonurdepe necropolis was seen as an evidence that the  horse was not an alien animal but had been domesticated and bred. Bronze, silver and faience signal trumpets used as wind musical instruments with wide socket, several horns were discovered which led to the belief that the sonorous instruments were used in the training and taming of horses in Margiana22.  A diminutive bronze sculpture of a horse head with a long neck, raised ears and large eyes was discovered in one grave at Gonur.

While India depended  upon Central Asia for horses, the latter depended on India for cotton, textile and dyes. According to Muzaffar Alam23 India’s textile production was such that by the 17th century India had begun to manufacture enough textiles to clothe nearly the whole of Central Asia as well as Iran. Many north-western Indian towns, including Lahore, Bajwara, Muchhiwara and Sialkot had reached specialization in textile production.

We read in Mansura Haider’s Indo-Central Asian Relations24 that the trade with Turkmenistan especially was such that special places in India was allotted for Turkmens to do trade in their commodities. In many big and small towns of India – for example, Delhi and Aligarh – there are majestic gates named after the Turcomans and called Turkman Gate like in northern Delhi. These were evidently the commercial portals through which horses and other commodities were brought into India. These also serve as the centres where the Turcomans lived and sold their rare and exotic products. Turcoman carpets  decorated the palaces and houses of India and the Turcoman Jewellery added to the beauty of Indian women. The Turcoman soldiers  swelled the ranks of the Mughal army and increased the number of Mughal nobility.

Urban Kalas as Industrial Hubs

A visit to Marv, Bairam Ali and Ancient Merv, 25 kms from the modern city shows that the numerous settlements that once arose and whose ruins can now be seen in the region were all located adjacent to each other on the banks of the Murgab river. These came up one after the other, presumably as the river, the only source of water for the inhabitants, changed its course. For this reason Merv was regarded as a ‘travelling city’.

In the middle of the 1st millennium BC the centre of Margush is said to have moved South to the city sites of Erk Kala and Gyaur Kala. In later times came up adjacent Kalas viz. Sultankala, Kyz kala, AbdullahKhankala  near the modern city of Bairam Ali.

Historical records inform us that the ancient Kalas were witness to life through the times of  Alexander the Great who set up the city of Alexandria in Margiana at Gyaur Kala and the Seleucid State with its centre  Antochia in Margiana. Following the establishment of the Greco-Bactrian kingdom [mid 3rd BC] the region was annexed to the Parthian State and later ruled by local  dynasties. From the second quarter of the 3rd upto the mid-7th AD it formed part of the Sassanian State until it was conquered by the Arabs in 651 AD.Erk Kala is the oldest and corresponds to Achaemenid Merv and is the smallest of the three. Gyaur Kala surrounds Erk Kala and comprises the Greek and Sassanian metropolis. It later became the capital of the Ummayad province of Khorasan.

The discovery of pottery-kilns, steel, iron and copper workshops point to the fact that Gyaur kala had been an industrial hub with craftsmen quarters. A variety of pottery sherds surround the wall. Many painted and designed ceramics were also recovered from Gyaur kala, city walls of Sultankala and the Shahryar Ark showing that a large ceramics industry might have been functioning there. A vast amount of numismatic data has also been excavated from Gyaur Kala.

The largest of the three cities, Sultan Kala, is said to have  served as an industrial suburb to the Abbasid/ Seljuk city. It was adjacent to Gyaur Kala. Many two-storey palaces where the elite of Merv resided were discovered in Sultankala. There were numerous ice houses where ice was stored. Possibly the people of Merv knew how to make ice from some freezing mixtures. It was an evidence of prosperity of Merv  that Sultans and royalty made it their capital.

That it was a melon growing area and there were vast melon fields is evidenced by the fact that within the Shahryar Ark is the pigeon house kaftarkhana comprising one long windowless room with many tiers of niches across the walls. Here the pigeons are said to have been raised for the dung used in growing the famous melons of Merv. Another view about the use of the room is that rolls of Buddhist manuscripts were stored in the windowless room away from light and dust.

A Centre of World Buddhism

Recent archaeological discoveries have revealed that Buddhism and Indian culture permeated every area of Central Asia and direct evidence of this has been revealed in the form of inscriptions and religious structures. According to A.Gubaev25 Buddhism made an enormous contribution to the establishment and development of  cultural links between  people of Central Asia and India in the ancient and medieval epochs. Buddhist missionaries propagated the teachings of the Buddha throughout the whole of Afghanistan and Central Asia. Buddhist centres at Ghazni, Kabul, Bamiyan, Balkh and Termez  were in communication with centres in  Central and East Turkestan26. 

In Alberuni words “Khorasan, Persia, Iraq, Mosul, the country upto the frontier of Syria was Buddhistic, but then Zarathustra went forth from Adharbayjan and preached Magism in Balkh [Baktre]. His doctrine came into favour with king Gushtasp [king of Iran] and his son Isfendiyad [spread the new faith both in East and West both by force and by treaties. He founded five temples throughout his whole empire from the frontiers of China to those of the Greek empire. Zoroastrianism became the obligatory relion of Persia and Iraq and in consequence the Buddhist emigrated to countries east of Balkh.27 

According to B.N. Puri  monumental remains and reference to Buddhist savants in Chinese Buddhist literature point to the flourishing state of Buddhism in Bactria and Parthia along with Afghanistan. Puri dates Buddhism in Central Asia possibly during the time of the Indo-Bactrians/ Indo-Greek dynasty founded by Greek king Diodotus in 250 BC who ruled from Bactra in Afghanistan, although he is of the view that the teaching of the Buddha may have found their way even earlier28.The fourth king Demetrios [Dharma Mitra]extended the kingdom upto Punjab [200-190 BC] which was formerly under the rule of the Mauryans. He was succeeded by a long list of successors, the fourth of whom was Meanander[king Milinda] born 150 BC who is said to have conquered the regions of north India upto the basin of the Ganges. Both Demetrius and Meanander were interested in Buddhism29.

Since the Greco –Bactrian kingdom unified in one political state the north Indian regions, Afghanistan and  several parts of western Turkestan, the political atmosphere was congenial for the Buddhist missionaries and their local followers in those areas to propagate the Buddhist faith.30 

King Asoka’s inscriptions in Afghanistan also suggest  that Central Asia had come within the range of Mauryan cultural activities and Buddhism  had a substantial following in the Kandahar region by the middle of the 3rd century BC. According to Rtveladze-Buddhism was proclaimed the official religion of the vast Mauryan empire [322-184 BC] and from there it spread to Bactria, Sogdia, Serindia [Eastern Turkestan] and China31. It is also proposed by P.C. Bagchi that Buddhism was introduced in the Balkh region in the time of Asoka who speaks of his efforts of spreading Dhamma among the people of  Gandhara, Kamboja [branch of Tokhara] and the Yona [Bactrian Greeks] who were all neighbours.

The Mauryan emperor Ashoka [273-232 BC]  coverted to Buddhism after the Kalinga War. He convened the Third Buddhist Council [250 BC] at Pataliputra following which missionaries were dispatched throughout the world. His 13th Edicts describes the effort made by him to propagate the faith throughout the Hellenistic world which at that time formed an uninterrupted continuum from the borders of India to Greece32. According to A. Gubaev and B.B.Kumar parts of India and Central Asia were ruled together during the Achaemenian, Seleucid and Kushana periods.33 

According to E. Zurcher, Buddhists first appeared in south of Central Asia, Turkmenistan region in the 1st BC. The first Buddhist group is said to have established itself in Merv (Margiana) in the 4th AD, while G.A.Pugachenkova and Z.I. Usmanova attributed the first monument to the 3rd-4th AD. G.A. Koshelenko assigned the first Buddhist monument to the early 1st centuries AD.34 

In Merv, archaeologists discovered an important Buddhist structure at the site of Gyaur Kala. There was revealed temples and a number of stupas. It was the site of a  monastery which is said to have been still functioning in the early Islamic era. The head of a Buddha statue was found at Merv making it the ‘furthest point to which Buddhism spread’, say scholars.  Indian manuscript35 said to be from the Vinay Pitaka written on palm leaf dated to the 7th century was also discovered at Merv.

A stupa was opened in Bairam Ali where vessels with two Buddhist manuscripts were found, both written in Sanskrit in Brahmi characters and inscribed on birch bark. One of them is said to have been restored and preserved at the Institute of Oriental Studies in St. Petersburg and the other is undergoing restoration in Moscow36. The Buddhist shrine in Gyaur kala has been dated to 200 AD while the Buddhist stupa is  dated 300 AD.

It is believed that the propagation of Buddhism in the Merv oasis could have taken place during the time it was part of the Seleucid kingdom by Asokas missionaries, some of whom according to Pali sources [Mahavamsa] were Greek Buddhist monks. According to Prof. A Litvinsky Buddhism reached Merv and Parthia as early as the Achaemenid times.

The enormous territory of Central Asia and East Turkestan constituted a single region in the last century B.C and the beginning of the first millennium A.D.  and Buddhism was accepted by the entire region as a ‘doctrine of moral ethics, an ideology and a religion.’37 It is thought that the main reason for a preference to Indian religious worship and the use of Indian script and languages was mainly due to the importance of Indian trade down the Oxus river and the activity of Indian merchants and craftsmen along this important trading route38.

It was after the formation of the Kushan empire that Buddhism started to be widely spread beyond the Hindukush and the Pamirs from north-west India. The faith flourished during the Kushan period [100BC- 200 AD] especially during the period of Kanishka [144-172 AD].

With the extension of Kushan influence Buddhism exerted greater influence in the realms of Parthians and Sassanians. The Parthian Buddhist faith was led by the mission of the Parthian Buddhist preachers An Shih Gao [148 AD] and An Hsuan [181AD], An Fachin [281-306 AD]. The calligrapher monk An Hui-tse lived in the 4th AD39. The Mahavamsa , the great chronicle of Ceylon described that Parthian and Alexandrian delegates were in attendance at the Buddhist Council held by King Duttagamini [108-77 BC].

We learn that the Kushans ruled over a vast empire that stretched from the Aral Sea to the Arabian Sea and included Northern India as far as Bihar in the east; Sind and Baluchistan [now in Pakistan] in the south-west; Kashmir and Khotan in the north and north-east; Bactria and Parthia in the north-west. They controlled the trade between India, China, Parthia and the Roman empire. This provided an ideal medium for the spread of Buddhism.40 And the great Silk Route, the greatest international road in the history of mankind was laid along the  kingdom of the Kushans from China to the Mediterranean Roman empire.41 


   1. Rtveladze Edvard: Civilizations, States and Cultures of Central Asia; Tashkent; Forum of Culture and Arts of Uzbekistan Foundation; University of World Economy and Diplomacy; 2009; p 207

   2.  Roy J.N and Kumar B.B: Edited; Astha Bharati;  India and Central Asia- Classical to Contemporary Periods; Concept Publishing Company; New Delhi; 2007; p 9; ‘Links and Interactions’ by B.B.Kumar. 3. Ibid, p.  9.

   4.  Levi Scott C: edited; India and Central Asia- Commerce and Culture, 1500-1800, Debates in Indian History and Society;  Oxford University Press; New Delhi; 2007;  ‘Indian Merchants in Central Asia’ by Claude Markovits; pp. 123-128.

   5.  Ibid, p. 123.

   6.  Ibid, pp. 123-151.

   7.  Rtveladze Edvard, op. cit., p. 17

   8.  Ibid, pp. 18, 40.

   9. Sarianidi Wiktor: Margush- Turkmenistan- Ancient Oriental kingdom in the Old Delta of the Murghab River; Ashgabat; Turkmendowlethabarlary; Benatzky Druck & Medien GmbH, Hannover; 2002;

10.  Gubaev A: India and Central Asia Pre-Islamic;  Tashkent; Cultural Integration of Turkmenistan and India in the Ancient and early Medieval Period; 2000; p. 37.

11.  Roy J.N and Kumar B.B.,  op. cit., p. 4.

12.  Sarianidi Wiktor: Margush- op. cit., p. 181.

13.  Sarianidi Wiktor, op. cit., p. 179.

14.  Ibid, p. 180.

15.  Ibid, p. 181.

16.  Ibid, p. 196.

17.  Ibid, p. 197. 

18.  Levi Scott C, op. cit., p. 126.

19.  Ibid, p. 101

20.  Ibid, p. 101.

21.  Sarianidi Wiktor: Margush- op. cit., p. 240.

22.  Ibid, p. 240.

23.  Levi Scott C: op. cit, p. 68;  'India, Russia, and the Eighteenth-century Transformation of the Central Asian Caravan Trade by Scott Levi; p103.

24.  Haidar Mansura: Indo- Central Asia Relations- From Early Times to Medieval Period; Manohar Publishers and Distributors; New Delhi; 2004; p292.

25.  Gubaev A: India and Central Asia Pre-Islamic;  Tashkent; Cultural Integration of Turkmenistan and India in the Ancient and early Medieval Period; 2000; p 37.

26.  B.A.Litvinsky B.A- Editor ; Zhang Guang-Da, Samghabadi R. Shabani  - Co-editors: History of Civilizations of Central Asia, Vol.III; The Crossroads of Civilizations: A.D.250 to 750; UNESCO; 1994; Motilal Banarsi Dass Publishers Pvt Ltd; Delhi ; 1999; ‘The Kushano-Sasanian Kingdom’ by A.H.dani and B.A.Litvinsky; p. 110

27.  Abu Raihan Alberuni: ‘Alberuni’s India’- Translated by Edward.C. Sachau, first published 2002; fourth impression 2005; Rupa and Co. New Delhi; p 4-5.

28.  Puri B.N: Buddhism in Central Asia; First edition:  Reprint 1993, 1996, 2000; Motilal Banarsi Dass Publishers Pvt Ltd; Delhi ; 1987; p 90.

29.  Ibid, p. 91.

30.  Puri B.N: Op. cit., p. 37. Gafurov B.G: Central Asia- Pre-Historic to Pre-Modern Times;   Shipra Publications; Delhi; Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Institute of Asian Studies, Kolkata; 2005; ‘Central Asia in the Kushan Period’; p. 205-240.

31.  Rtveladze Edvard, op. cit.; p. 171.

32.  Roy J.N and Kumar B.B., op. cit., p. 29.

33.  Gubaev A, op. cit.,  p. 37.

34.  Rtveladze Edvard: Civilizations, States and Cultures of Central Asia;  Tashkent; Forum of Culture and Arts of Uzbekistan Foundation; University of World Economy and Diplomacy; 2009; p 39-40;170-176. 35. Rtveladze Edvard: Civilizations, States and Cultures of Central Asia;  Tashkent; Forum of Culture and Arts of Uzbekistan Foundation; University of World Economy and Diplomacy; 2009; p 175.

36.  B.A.Litvinsky B.A- Editor; Zhang Guang-Da, Samghabadi R. Shabani  -Co-editors: History of Civilizations of Central Asia, Vol.III; The Crossroads of Civilizations: A.D.250 to 750; UNESCO; 1994; Motilal Banarsi Dass Publishers Pvt Ltd; Delhi ; 1999; ‘ Religions and Religious Movements-II –Buddhism’ by M.I. Vorobyova- Desyatovskaya; p 437.

37.  Ibid, pp.  431-432.

38.  Harmatta Janos- Editor;  Puri B.N and  Etemadi G.F - Co-editors: History of Civilizations of Central Asia, Vol.II; The Development of Sedentary and Nomadic Civilizations; 700 B.C to A.D.250;  UNESCO; 1994; Motilal Banarsi Dass Publishers Pvt Ltd; Delhi ; 1999; ’Religions in the Kushan Empire’ by J. Harmatta, with contributions of B.N.Puri, L.Lelekov, S. Humayun and D.C. Sircar; p. 318.

39.  Puri B.N.,  op. cit., pp. 98, 102.

40.  Ibid, p. 37.

41.  Ibid, p. 37.     



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