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  • 30th November 2023

    Paper II (General Studies I):
    Subject (At & Culture) – Topic – Language and Literature

    Q1. In terms of heritage and culture, Gupta period made significant contributions to the development of the rich and diverse literature of India.
    Comment (10 marks, 150 words)

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      • In the introduction mention the Gupta Empire and briefly mention the contribution of Gupta’s.In the body mention the contributions made to the literature during Gupta reign.
      • In the conclusion summarize the answer to conclude suitably.

    The Gupta Empire stretched across northern, central and parts of southern India between 320 and 550 CE. The period is noted for its achievements in the arts, architecture, sciences, religion, and philosophy. The Gupta Dynasty had a significant impact on the development of Indian culture and literature. The Gupta Dynasty was responsible for the emergence of a number of great literary works, including the Mahabharata and the Ramayana, two of the most important Hindu epics.

    Literature during Gupta Period:

      •  Sanskrit language and literature reached the level of classical excellence after
        centuries of evolution and lavish royal patronage. Sanskrit was the Guptas
        court language. The Puranas existed in the form of bardic literature long
        before the Guptas, and they were finally compiled and given their current form
        during the Gupta period.
      •  During this time, various Smritis, or verse-written law books, were also compiled. This is when Yajnavalkya, Narada, Katyayana, and Brihaspati wrote their Smritis. By the fourth century A.D., the two great epics, the Ramayana and the Mahabharata, were almost compiled.
      •  The Gupta period is notable for its secular literature production. The most well-known Sanskrit poet of the period is Kalidasa, who lived in the court of Chandragupta II. Kalidasa’s most important works included the Abhijnanashakuntalam (considered one of the world’s best hundred literary works), Ritusamhara, Malavikagnimitra, Kumarasambhava, Meghaduta, Raghuvamsha, and Vikrama Urvashiyam. Mrichchhakatika, or the Little Clay
        Cart, was written by Shudraka.
      •  Vishakadatta wrote the Mudrarakshasa, which is about the cunning Chanakya’s schemes. Another of his plays, Devichandraguptam, has only been preserved in fragments.
      • During the Gupta period, Sanskrit grammar based on Panini and Patanjali was also developed. This period is notable for the compilation of the Amarakosha by Amarasimha, a luminary in Chandragupta II’s court. Chandragomia, a Buddhist scholar from Bengal, wrote a grammar book called Chandravyakaranam.
      • Buddhist and Jaina literature in Sanskrit was also written during the Guptaperiod. The most notable writers were the Gupta period Buddhist scholars Arya Deva, Arya Asanga, and Vasubandhu.
      • Siddhasena Divakara established logic among the Jainas. Many Prakrit forms evolved during the Gupta period, including Suraseni, which was spoken in Mathura and its surroundings, Ardhamagadhi, which was spoken in Oudh and Bundelkhand, Magadhi in Bihar, and Maharashtra in Berar.

    The Gupta dynasty was regarded as India’s literary golden age. Prose, poetry, theatre,and grammar all contributed to the fantastic literature. It is an outwardmanifestation of the educational and learning system. Traditions, stories, moral
    codes, and religious and philosophical ideas were all passed down through the Puranas