The Aśvakas or Aśvakayanas, classically called the Assacenii/Assacani (Sanskrit: अश्वक), is the Sanskrit name of a people who supposedly lived in northeastern Afghanistan and the Peshawar Valley. They are/were believed to be a sub-group of the Greater Kamboja tribe profusely referenced in ancient Sanskrit/Pali literature and were partitioned into eastern and western Aśvakas. They find mention in the Puranas, Mahabharata and numerous other ancient Sanskrit and Pali texts. Today, their descendants are mostly heterogeneous people. The modern ethnonym Afghan, which was attested in the 6th century in the form of Avagānā by the Indian astronomer Varāhamihira, may have evidently derived from Aśvaka.
The Sanskrit term aśva, Iranian aspa and Prakrit assa means horse. The name Aśvaka/Aśvakan or Assaka is said to be derived from Sanskrit Aśva or Prakrit Assa and it literally denotes someone connected with the horses---hence: a horseman, or a cavalryman  or "breeder of horses".
The Aśvakas were especially engaged in the occupation of breeding,
raising and training war horses, as also in providing expert cavalry services to outside nations, hence they also constituted an excellent class of Kshatriyas (warriors). Like tribal term Kamboja, the appellative term Aśvaka is also interpreted as land of horses.
Pāṇini styled the Aspa and the Aśvaka clans of the Kunar and Swat valleys (earlier Kafiristan--- modern Nuristan)  as Aśvayanas and Aśvakayanas respectively. The Classical writers use the respective equivalents Aspasioi or Aspasii (Hippasii) and Assakenoi (or Assaceni/Assacani). Based on evidence from Indika of Megasthenes (c. 350 BC - 290 BC), Pliny (Gaius Plinius Secundus) (23 AD–79 AD) refers to clans like Osii (Asii), Asoi, and Aseni in his Historia Naturalis 
and locates them on river Indus mainly in the northern western frontier
parts parts of modern Pakistan which region exactly constituted the
ancient Kamboja. The Osii, Taxilae, Amanda, Peucolaitae, Arsagalitae (=Urasa + Gilgit), Asoi, Geretae and Aseni etc were all related clans and constituted mostly the Gandhara and Kamboja population. Amanda (Gandhara), Taxilae, Peucolaitae etc belonged to the Gandhara set-up whereas Asoi (Aspasioi—the Aśvayanas), Geretaei (Guraeans), Asii (Aśvakas/Aśvakayanas), Aurasa (=Hazaras), (i.e. the Arsa-(Aurasa-) component of the Arsagalitae), and the Aseni etc belonged to the Kamboja. John Watson McCrindle  also regards the Asoi and Geretae to be respectively equivalent to the Aspasioi and the Gouraei of Arian--both being western-branch of the Assakenoi (Aśvakas). Bucephala was the capital of Aseni which stood on Hydaspes (Jhelum). Alexander had named this city after his horse Becephalus when it had died sometime in June 326 BC after being fatally wounded at the Battle of Hydaspes with king Porus (Paurava) of Punjab. A view has been held that the clan names like Osii, Asioi, and Aseni of Indika of Megasthenes equate to Asii referred to by Strabo and Asiani as referred to in Historiae Philippicae by Trogue Pompey and further, they also equate to the Aspasioi (Aspasii, Hipasii) and Assakenoi (Assacenii/Assacani) clans of upper Indus referred to as Aśvayana and Aśvakayana in Pāṇini's Ashtadhyayi.
The Aśvakas, according to Hindu tradition, were resident in the eastern parts of modern Afghanistan, south of Hindu Kush and their population reached up to the Indus River and to parts of Punjab in Pakistan. Their metropolitan areas were believed to be in the area of Swat (near modern Kalash-Valley and Pakistani side of Nuristan) and in some part regions of Gandhara (today Peshawar), in present day Pakistan.
Ancient Sanskrit literature also refers to another clan
(Asvakas) which represented an Indo-Aryan Janapada
located on river Godavari
in south-west India. Aśmaka literally means land of stone
. Some scholars believe that the south-western Asmakas/Assakas were also an offshoot from the North-west Aśvakas.
Aśvakas: a branch of Kambojas
Buddhist Texts evidence
Buddhist texts like Aruppa-Niddeesa, Manorathapurni, Kunala Jataka, Samangalavilasini etc speak of Kamboja land as the land of horses e.g:
- Kambojo assa.nam ayata.nam...
The cluster assa in the above expression of Sumangavilasini means horse, which on adding suffix -ka gives the Prakrit Assaka which term when considered in the context of the above expression denotes the following:
- Assaka = The Kambojas connected with horses; horsemen; cavalry.
- Assaka = The Kamboja land or Janapada.
Similarly, the Sanskrit Aśvaka can be derived from Sanskrit Aśva meaning horse, which, likewise, denote the following:
- Aśvaka = The Kambojas connected with horses; horsemen; cavalry.
- Aśvaka = The Kamboja land or Janapada.
From the above statement, it is quite obvious that term Assaka or Aśvaka stood for the Kamboja land, Kamboja pe ople, Kamboja horsemen or the Kamboja cavalry.
The formation of clannish name Aśvaka or Assaka from
the Sanskrit "Aśva" or the Prakrit "Assa" has exactly a similar
formation as followed by tribal terms such as Kambojika/Kambojaka (from
Kamboja), Madaraka (from Madra) and Yonaka (from Yona), Lichchhivika
(from Lichchhivi), Vrijika (from Vriji), Mallaka (from Malla), Jartaka
(from Jarta = modern Jat).
For justifiable reasons, the name Aśvaka has also been interpreted by scholars as the "land of horses". In ancient Buddhist and Hindu texts, Kamboja has repeatedly been styled as the "home of horses".
Thus, based on the name and the geographical location of Aśvaka tribe,
numerous scholars have concluded that the Aśvakas were a sub-branch of
the more general tribal name Kamboja.
Arrian's and Asoka's evidence
Bevan and many other scholars have connected the Greek name Assakenoi and Asapasio with Sanskrit Asva i.e. horse.
The companions of Alexander
(~326 BCE) do not record the names of Kamboja and Gandhara and rather
locate numerous small political units in their territories
Arrian informs us that the region on west of Indus up to Kophen (Kabul) was inhabited by tribes called Assakenoi and Aspasioi. In the dominions of the Assakenoi there was a great city called Massaka, the seat of sovereign power, which controlled whole region. And there was another city called Peukelaitis which was also of great size and was not far from Indus. It was the seat of Astakenoi
(western Gandharas). These settlements were on the west side of Indus
and extended in the western direction as far as the Kophen. From Arrian
we learn that the Aspasioi and the Assakenoi (Asvakas) were located west of Indus on river Kabul extending towards Hindukush. The Astakenoi (western Gandharas) had occupied Peukelaitis and their other section—the Taxilae (eastern Gandharas) were located on east of Indus.
Fifth Major Rock Edict (~250 BCE) of king Asoka found at Shahbazgarhi and Mansehra in north-west frontier province of Pakistan (the supposed location of the Kambojas) enumerates the Yavanas, Kambojas and Gandhara
in that order. Scholars believe that the order of enumeration implies
that these people were geographically located in that order.
Asoka's Thirteenth Major Rock Edict (~250 BCE) found in the same
locations speaks saliently of the Yonas and the Kambojas but excludes
the Gandharas altogether. His Minor Rock Edict (~342 BCE) inscribed in Greek and Aramaic languages and located in Kandahar is said to be specifically directed at the Yonas and the Kambojas. His other three epigraphic inscriptions in Aramaic found in 1932, 1969 and 1973 in Lamghan valley at Pul-i-Darunta, Sultan Baba and Sam Baba
respectively, and yet another one found in Kandhahar in 1964, again in
Aramaic, undoubtedly speak high of the eminence of the Kambojas during Maurya rule.
Thus, we see that the Yonas and the Kambojas are referenced more
numerously and more prominently in king Asoka's edicts whereas the
Gandharas find only lesser reference. This clearly implies that during
Asoka's time, the Yonas and the Kambojas were more significant people of
- Now king Asoka's Yavanas were undoubtedly located in Arachosia (Kandhahar) 
- And his Gandharas were in Pushkalavati/Peshawar west of Indus (territory of the Astakenoi of Arrian) as well as in Taxila (the kingdom of Taxiles) on east side of river Indus.
- Therefore, the Kambojas of king Asoka are left with no alternative other than to be placed exactly and precisely in the same position as the Assakenoi and Aspasioi of Arrian. The Kambojas had accordingly occupied Paropamisadae (Kabul, Kunar and Swat valleys) where the Aramaic records of king Asoka have been found.
- Cf: 'Where the Kambojas geographically should have been we
exactly find the Assakenoi and the Aspasioi whose names were derived
from the reputation they enjoyed for the excellence of their horse. And
the Kambojas—found as they are in Indian traditions as the splendid
horsemen and breeders of notable horses—surely are included among them' .
- Cf:"The word Aśvaka derived from Aśva a horse signified merely
the cavaliers (or horsemen); it was less an ethnic in the rigorous
acceptance of the word than a general appellation applied by the Indians
of Punjab to the tribes of the region of Kophes (Kabul) renowned from
antiquity for the excellence of its horses. In popular dialect, the
Sanskrit word took the usual form Assaka which reappears scarecely
unmodified in Assakennoi".
Since the Kophese (or Kabul valley) was precisely the seat of the
Kamboja tribes, hence Aśvaka as an appellation was undoubtedly applied
to this people i.e the Kambojas.
We, thus get another name for the Kambojas i.e Asvakas. Since the
Kambojas were famous as cavalrymen (Asva-yuddhah-Kushalah); Aśvakas,
'horsemen' was the term popularly applied to them.
The Yonas of king Asoka get adequately accounted for in Arachosia. And his Gandharas get adequately accounted for by the Astakenoi of Peukelaitis (eastern Gandharas) and the Taxilae located on east side of Indus (Eastern Gandharas). Could any scholar tell as to how can we account for the Kambojas unless we equate them to the Aspasioi and Assakenoi of Arrian?. Do we have any answer?
How could the Kambojas who otherwise find so prominent a mention (1) as independent rulers of a great Mahajanapada per Buddhist texts of 500 BCE; 2) as a very salient Kshatriya tribe in Pāṇini's Ashtadhyayi of 400 BCE; (3) as an important self-ruling people in Arthashastra of Kautiliya (~300 BCE)–the prime minister of Chandragupta Maurya which authority also glorifies the war horses of the Kamboja to be the foremost among the best breed of the known horses 
while making no reference whatsoever to the Gandharas or their horses;
and (4) lastly but not the least, also being so importantly referred to
the Shahbazgarhi and Mansehra Rock Edicts of Asoka (~250 BCE) etc–fell out of limelight so abruptly and becoming virtually extinct so suddenly in the intervening period of Alexander's
invasion (326 BCE) just 50–60 years anterior to king Asoka's reign
unless we equate them to same people as the Aspasioi and Assakenoi of
the Greek writings?
It is quite remarkable that, whereas the companions of Alexander (326 BCE) give very high prominence to the Aspasioi of Kunar valley, the Assakenoi of Swat valley and Astakenoi of Peukelaitis, the Edicts (~250 BCE) king Asoka, on the other hand give high prominence only to Yonas (in Arachosia) and Kambojas (in Kabul/Swat valleys).
There is no mention of any Aśvaka people in Asoka's records. The
contemporary Buddhist texts also repeatedly refer to the Kambojas and
Gandharas but not to the Aśvakas of Kabul valley. Also although the numerous Buddhist texts repeatedly style the Kamboja as the "home
of horses"', there is absolutely no reference to any Gandhara horse or
to the Gandhara being a "home of horses" in the same Buddhist sources.
This single and very important historical fact rules out any
identification of the Aśvakas with the Gandharas as some writers
erroneously tend to establish.
Thus, the expression "home of horses" specifically used by
numerous Buddhist texts with reference to the Kambojas (and only the
Kambojas) should clearly establish their identity and connection with
the Aśvakas. Indisputably, the Aśvakas were a sub-section of the wider
Kamboja tribe (K. P. Jayaswal).
Apart from the Buddhist sources, the epic Mahabharata as well as numerous Puranic texts also repeatedly refer to the excellent horses (Aśvas) of the Kambojas and also frequently style the latter people as "Aśva-yudha-Kushalah" (expert cavalry), yet none of them makes even a slightest reference to the Aśvakas of Kabul or their horses.
Very interestingly, Mahabharata in its enumeration of best class
horses, mentions the Kamboja, Aratta, Mahi, Sindhu and Vanayu horses
only but makes no reference to the Gandhara as well as any Aśvaka
horses. Valmiki Ramayana
also glorifies the horses of Kamboja, Bahlika, Vanayu etc and styles
them as of foremost breed but it does not refer to any Gandhara or any
Aśvaka horses at all. Arthashastra of Kautiliya
gives high prominence to the Kambhoja, Sindhu, Aratta and Vanayu horses
and lesser to those from the Bahlíka (Bactria), Papeya, Sauvira and
Taitala countries but this important text on state-craft also makes no
reference to the Gandhara and Aśvaka horses.
Similarly, numerous other ancient Indian texts like Upamiti Bhava
Prapancha Katha, Abhidhamma Ratanamala, Samaraiccakaha of Haribhadra
Suri, Manasollasa of Chalukya king Somesavara III, Amarakosa of Amara
Asvashastra of Nakula, Karanabhara of Bhasa etc refer to the horses
from countries like Kamboja, Bahlika, Vanayu, Sindhu, Saka, Yavana,
Tushara, Khorasan, Tajik, Turushaka etc but not mention any horses from
Gandhara or Asvaka country. As a matter-of-fact, none of the numerous Hindu, Buddhist as well as the Jaina
texts make even a slightest reference to the Aśvaka horses while
references to the Kamboja horses loom very large in all of these texts.
The Bengal recension of Ramayana, Mahabharata, Vayu Purana, Brahamanda Purana, Vishnudharmottara Mahapurana  Matsya Purana, and Markendeya Purana  etc all refer to the southern Asmakas (Assakas of the Buddhist texts) only  but has no reference to the Kabul Asvakas. Padma Purana however, seems to locate the Asmakas in northern  as well as in southern India. Brhat-Samhita of Varaha Mihira (6th century CE) mentions the Asmakas living near to the Madras in north-western division.
The northern Asmakas of Padama Purana as well as Brhatsamhita are
obviously the same people as the Asvakas of Kunar/Swat valleys. Ashtadhyayi of Pāṇini specifically refers to the Asvakas of the Kunar/Swat valleys as Asvayanas and the Asvakayanas  (highlander republican people) located south of Hindukush who are considered equivalent to Arrian's Aspasioi and Assakenoi respectively. They had constituted the Ganas of the Paropamisadian
Kambojas. In his sutras, Pāṇini also makes separate mention of the
Asmakas of south and associates them with Avantis in a single
appellation as Avantyasmakah, thus obviously referring to the southern Asmakas located on Godavary.
Vishnudharmotra Purana/Agni Purana evidence
Puranic text like Vishnudharmotra Purana too specifically attests that the Kambojas and Gandharas were proficient in cavalry warfare i.e. in Aśva'-Yuddha. A similar information is also provided in the Agni Purana. This again seems to confirm a connection between the Kambojas and Aśvakas.
In the Anushasnaparava section of Mahabharata, the Kambojas are specifically designated as aśava.yuddha.kushalah (expert cavalry).
Commenting on the above verse of Mahabharta, noted scholars like Dr K. P. Jayswal observe that "Since the Kambojas were famous for their horses (aśva) and as a cavalry-men (Aśva-yudhah kushalah), hence the Aśvakas i.e. horsemen was the term popularly applied to them".
Shakti Sangham Tantra evidence
Shatt.panchashad.desha.vibhaga of Shakti Sangama Tantra also testifies that the Kamboja was not only famous for its fine horses (aśva) but also for its excellent horsemen.
Aśvaka coins and Arthashastra evidence
The coins of Aśvakas refer to themselves as vatasvaka (vata.asvaka), which in Sanskrit, equals varta-aśvaka i.e Aśvakas engaged in varta profession.
The use of prikritic vata (Sanskrit varta) appellation by the Aśvakas in their coins reminds one of the Varta.shastr.opajivin descriptions of the Kambojas as attested by Kautiliya in his Arthashastra.
The above view is further reinforced by Brahtsamhita of Varaha Mihira which also says that the Kambojas lived by shastr and varta.
The Asvayanas (Kambojas) have been attested to be good cattle
breeders and agriculturists by classical writers. This is clear from big
number of the bullocks, 230,000 according to Arrian, of a size and
shape superior to what the Macedonians had not known, which Alexander captured from them and decided to send them to Macedonia for agriculture.
The Aśvaka Kambojas are also attested to have fielded 30,000 strong cavalry, 30 elephants and 20,000 infantry against Alexander.
These above staggering figures about agricultural cattle and the war horses
of the Aśvakas sufficiently prove the correctness of Kautiliya's
statement on the Kambojas which portrays the Kambojas as living both by warfare (shastr.opajivin) as well as by agriculture/cattle-culture (varta.opajivin).
The above facts, when viewed in the light of time and space propinquity, evidently connect the Aśvakas with the varta.shastr.opajivin Kambojas of the Arthashastra.
More opinions from scholars
Sir Thomas H. Holdich, in the his classic book, The Gates of India, writes that the Aspasians (Aspasioi) represent the modern Kafirs. But the modern Kafirs, especially the Siyah-Posh
Kafirs (Kamoz/Camoje, Kamtoz) etc are considered to be modern
representatives of the ancient Kambojas Kafirs of Hindu Kush and the
Kambojas, this shows that the Aspasioi (Aspas), who were the western
branch of the Assakenoi (Aśvakas) of classical writings, represented a
section of the Sanskrit Kambojas.
According to Pakistan Review: "These Kafirs
once occupied a wider region before the pressure of events squeezed
them into their present narrow valleys. They or some earlier ethnic type
on which they become superimposed, may have been the Kambhojas and the Alinas of the Vedas whose offshoots were probably the tribes encountered by Alexander in Kunar, Bajaur and Swat. Among the Greek writers Arrian refers to them as Assakenoi and Aspasioi. These names are associated with the old Aryan word for horse (asva) and that the horse's head is still recognized as a sacred symbol by these Kafir remnants...". Thus according to this view also, the Assakenoi and Aspasioi of Arrian were offshoots from the Kambojas.
French scholars Dr E. Lamotte has also identified the Aśvakas with the Kambojas of ancient Sanskrit literature. "Par
ailleurs le Kamboja est régulièrement mentionné comme la "patrie des
chevaux" (Asvanam ayatanam), et cette reputation bien etablie gagné
peut-etre aux eleveurs de chevaux du Bajaur et du Swat l'appellation
d'Aspasioi (du v.-p. aspa) et d’assakenoi (du skt asva "cheval")" 
While discussing Aspasioi and Assakenoi
tribes living west of Indus and north of river Kabul in the valleys of
Alishang, Kunar, Swat and Panjkora, in context of Alexander's invasion
of India, Paul Goukowsky observes: "Pour les sources Indiennes, ce pays est celui des Kamboja eleveurs de chevaux.
De fait, les tribus signalées dans cette région par les historiens
d'Alexandre portent des noms tirés de celui du cheval (iranien aspa,
sanscrit asva...). Pāṇini connait deux peuplades les Asvayana (vallees de l'Alishang et du Kunar) et les Asvakayana (habitat l'Udyana, cest-a-dire le Swat le Buner et la vallee de la Panjkora. Les premiers paraissent correspondre aux Aspasiens/Hipasiens (par l'intermediate d'une forme Iranienne en Aspa); les seconds aux Assakeniens (la forme pracrite en Assa etant
celle de la langue parlee a l'epoque le d'Alexandre). Il semble donc
que la langue Iranienne predominait au nord du Kunar le pracrit au sud". Thus, Paul considers the Assakenoi and Aspasioi as sections of the Kambojas.
Cf: "Kamboja is regularly mentioned as the "homeland of horses"
and it was this well-established reputation which possibly earned the
horse-breeders of Bajaur and Swat the epithet of Aspasioi (from Old Pers
Aspa) and Assakenoi (from Sanskrit Asva "horse")".
While referring to a certain Sakya legend connected with Udyana
locale (north-west frontiers province of Pakistan), James Fergusson
connects the Udyana country with the Kambojas of the Hindu texts. But the territories of Kunar, Udyana, Swat and Varana (Aorna of classical writers)
etc were the very habitats of the Aśvaka Kambojas since remote
antiquity...thus proving that the Asvakas were same as the Kambojas.
J. W. McCrindle says that the modern Afghanistan -- the Kaofue (Kambu) of Hiun Tsang was ancient Kamboja, and further says that the name Afghan evidently derives from the Aśavakan, the Assakenoi of Arrian. Thus it can be seen that Dr McCrindle clearly identifies the classical Assakenoi/Aspasioi with the Sanskrit Kambojas.
While discussing Kambojas, Dr H. C. Raychayudhury, Dr B. N. Mukerjee write: "With the expression Assa.nam Ayata.nam---land of horses used by Pali texts in reference to the Kambojas, may be compared the names Aspasioi and Assakenoi given by classical writers to the sturdy people living in the Alishang and Swat valleys in the days of Alexander ".
According to John Muir, the
Kambojas had inhabited north-west of India from river Indus to as far
as Hindukush. They had the same Aryan origin as the Indians however,
they were afterwards reckoned to be barbarians because their manners
became changed afterwards and they were justly called Indians and
barbarians by the Chinese  and the Greeks.
The same therefore, happened to the Kambojas although in a less marked
manner as took place between the Zend people and the Indians in a more
remote period". Since Fah-hien's Indians were people of Swat/Udyana,
Hiuen Tsang's Indians were the people of Kapisa to Rajapura (Rajauri)
and Arrian's Indians were the Assakenoi, Aspasio and Asteknoi localised
in Kapisa/Swat/Kunar/Aornos regions of Paropamisadae in the west of Indus and north of Kabol as far as up to the Hindu Kush,
hence, Johm Muir's Kambojas are exactly the same as the Aspasio,
Guraeus, Assakenoi and Astekenoi of Arrian, or the people from Kapisa to
Udyana/Swat territories, stated to be rude frontier Indians by Chinese
pilgrims Hiuen Tsang and Fa-hien.
Dr S. M. Ali has identified the ancient Kambojas of the Puranic literature with the inhabitants of the Kafir valleys, who, as we know from classical writings, were none else than the Aspasioi off-shoot of the Aśvakan Kambojas.
According to Dr J. L. Kamboj: "It is now generally accepted that the Ashvakas (Assakenoi/Aspasioi of Arrian,
Ashvakayanas/Asvayanas of Pāṇini) were a sub-branch of the Kambojas.
Their coins have been found with the legend 'Vatasvaka'. The
significance of the Prakritic word 'vata' in 'Vatasvaka' (Vata+asvaka)
is to be sought in its Sanskrit form (Varta) which means (among
other things) trade, industry, and agriculture. These were also
precisely the professions of the Kambojas since Kautilya specifically styles the Kambojas as Varta.sastr.opajivin i.e living by agriculture, trade and wielding weapons.
The Asvaka coins also bear a long robed figure in trousers (i.e an
Asvaka) standing with folding hands before the moon-on-hill. In a series
of coins from Pataliputra
(Mauriyas), a similar moon-on-hill symbol is placed over a standard.
The homageful figure in Vatasvaka coins has been interpreted by some
scholars to express the subordination of the Asvakas to the dynasty of
Candra (i.e Chandragupta Maurya)".
"History of Panjab" by Dr L. M. Joshi and Dr Fauja Singh (Ed) also
identifies the Assakenoi and Aspasioi of the classical writings with the
clans of the Kambojas.
Dr R. C. Majumdar, Romila Thappar, noted historians of India also
take the Aśvakas to be same people as the Kambojas and they all connect
them with the people of Kafirstan.
Dr Buddha Parkash notes: "The Macedonian conqueror made short shrifts of the arrangements of Darius and over-running Achaemenian empire, dashed into modern Pakistan (achemenid satrapen) and encountered stiff residstence of the Kamboja tribes called Aspasioi and Assakenoi known in the Indian texts as Aśvayana and Aśvakayana ".
These Asvayana and Asvakayana clans had fought the invader to a man. When worst came to worst, even the Asvakayana Kamboj women had taken up arms and joined their fighting husbands, thus preferring "a glorious death to a life of dishonor". Diodorus
gives a detailed graphic picture as to how the Aśvakayanas (Kambojs)
had conducted themselves when faced with the sudden treacherous
onslaught from Alexander.
Commenting on the heroic resistance and courage displayed by the
Aśvakayanas (Kambojas) in the face of treacerous onslaught of Alexander,
Dr Buddha Prakash remarks: "Hardly could any Thermopylae be more glorious!"
Afghan and Aśvakan relationship
Numerous scholars of note now believe that the name Afghan has been derived from Sanskrit Aśvaka or Aśvakan (Aśvakayana), the Assakenoi of Arrian. This view was propounded by scholars like Dr Christian Lassen, Dr. J. W. McCrindle, M. V. de Saint Martin etc, and has been supported by numerous modern scholars . In Sanskrit, the word aśva (Iranian aspa, Prakrit assa) means "horse", and aśvaka (Prakrit assaka) means "horseman", "horse people", "land of horses"
Kamboja Cavalry in ancient wars
The Kambojas had been famous throughout all periods of history for their excellent breed of horses as well as famous horsemen or cavalry troopers. They repeatedly appear in the characteristic Iranian roles of splendid horsemen and breeders of notable horses. The epic, the Puranic and numerous other ancient literature profusely attest the Kambojas among the finest horsemen. They were constituted into Military Sanghas and Corporations to manage their political affairs, as Kautiliya and Mahabharata amply attest for us. They are also attested to have been living as Ayuddha-jivi or Shastr-opajivis, which means that the Kamboja cavalry offered their military services to other nations as well. There are numerous references to Kambojas being requistioned as cavalry troopers in ancient wars by outside nations. V. R. Ramachandra Dikshitar observes: "Both
the Puranas and the epics agree that the horses of the Sindhu and
Kamboja regions were of the finest breed, and that the services of the
Kambojas as cavalry troopers were requisitioned in ancient wars".
Herodotus attests that the Gandarian mercenaries (Gandharans/Kambojans) from the twentieth strapy of the Achaemenids were recruited in the army of emperor Xerxes I (486-465 BCE) which he led against the Hellas.
Similarly, the men of the Mountain Land (Akaufaka), from north of Kabol-River equivalent to medieval Kohistan (Pakistan), figure in the army of Darius III against Alexander at Arbela with a cavalry and fifteen elephants.
These mercenaries were the well known parvatiya Ayuddhajivins of Pāṇini's Ashtadhyayi located on either side of the Hindu Kush and who belonged to Kamboja/Gandhara group of a warrior caste.
General Sudakshina of the Kambojas was invited by Duryodhana, the Kuru king of Hastinapura to help him in the Mahabharata war against the Pandavas. Sudakshina Kamboj came to his side with one Akshauhini powerful army of ferocious Central Asian warriors which also included the Shakas and Yavanas, besides the Kambojas. Of the ten distinguished Generals appointed by Duryodhana to efficiently manage his vast host of army, Sudakshina Kamboja was one such distinguished General.
Bala Kanda of Valmiki Ramayana refers to a battle between sage Vasishtha and king Vishwamitra of Kanauj. Sage
Visishtha had sought the military assistance of the Kambojas, Shakas,
Yavanas, Pahlavas, Kiratas and other Mlechchas from the North-west. King
Vishwamitra had lost all his sons in the battle. In remorse, he
renounced the world and turned into an ascetic after the war.
The ancient Sanskrit drama Mudra-rakashas by Vishakhadatta and the Jaina work Parisishtaparvan refer to Chandragupta's alliance with Himalayan king Parvataka. The Himalayan
alliance gave Chandragupta a formidable composite army made up of the
Shakas, Yavanas, Kambojas, Kiratas, Parasikas and Bahlikas as attested
by Mudra-Rakashas (Mudra-Rakshasa 2).
With the help of these frontier martial tribes from Central Asia, Chandragupta was able to defeat the Greek successors of Alexander the Great and the Nanda/Nandin rulers of Magadha so as to found the powerful Maurya empire in northern India, at least for a short time till the Kushans and other ruler conquered north-west India.
The Kalika Purana, one of the eighteen Upa-Puranas of the Hindus, refers to a war between King Kalika and notes the Shakas, Kambojas, Khasas etc as a powerful military allies of king Kali. The Purana further notes these Barbarians as taking orders from their women, which culture was typical of tribes located on Oxus/north-west.
Patanjali around 150 BCE and Yuga Purana chapter of Gargi-Samhita refer to 2nd-century BCE Yavana attack on Saketa, Panchala, Mathura and Pataliputra located in Majjhima-desa or Mid India. Anushasnaparava of Mahabharata attests that Mathura country in Mid India was under the joint control of the Yavanas and the Kambojas (12.101.05). The Kamboja royal family at Mathura is also attested from Mathura Lion Capitol inscriptions of Saka Strap (Kshatrapa) Rajuvula. Vanaparava of Mahabharata woefully deplores that the sacred earth (Indo-Aryan land), in Kaliyuga, would be ruled un-righteously by Mlechchha kings of the Yavanas, Kambojas, Sakas etc.
These references show that the Kamboja cavalry from north-west in
conjunction with the Yavanas had invaded India and ruled over it prior
to Christian era migration of Kambojas and Yona invasion of India.
According to numerous Puranas, the military Corporations of the Shakas, Yavanas, Kambojas, Pahlavas and Paradas, known as pānca-ganah (five hordes) as well as foremost of the Kshatriya or warrior clans (Kshatriya-ganah Ksatriya pungvah), had militarily supported the Haihaya and Talajunga Kshatriyas in depriving Ikshvaku king Bahu (the 7th king in descent from Harishchandra), of his Ayodhya kingdom.
A generation later, Bahu's son, Sagara recaptured Ayodhya after totally destroying the Haihaya and Talajangha Kshatriyas in the battle. Story goes that king Sagara had punished these foreign hordes by changing their hair-styles and turning them into degraded Kshatriyas.
Bhagavata Purana refers to a war between Jarasandha and Yadavas led by Sri Krshna. The Kambojas came as military allies of Jarasandha, king of Magadha. There is reference to the siege of Gomant Parvata where the Kamboja army was positioned on its east flank. Bhagavata Purana speaks of the Kamboja General as a powerfully armed mighty warrior (samiti-salina atta-capah Kamboja).
The Palas employed mercenary forces and certainly recruited horses from Kambojas as is clear from their own Inscriptions. According to Dr N. G. Majumdar, if
horses could be brought from Kamboja, it is also perfectly reasonable
to suppose that for trade and other purposes, some adventurers (from
Kamboja) could also have found their way into that province. Scholars like Dr R. C. Majumdar observe that the armed forces of Pala Dynasty of Bengal had included foreigners like the Khasas, Hunas, Kambojas, Kulitas, Karnatas, Latas and Malavas etc. Writes Dr R. C. Majumdar: "Mercenary
soldiers (Specially cavalry) might have been recruited from the
Kambojas and some of them might have been influential chiefs". According Dr Majumdar and many other scholars, some courageous military General of the Kambojas had later captured north-western parts of Bengal from the Palas and founded the Kamboja dynasty in Bengal.
Scholars also state that the Kamboja cavalry had also formed part of
the Gurjara-Pratihara armed forces in 8th to 10th centuries AD. They had
come to Bengal with the Pratiharas
when the latter conquered part of the province.
In fact, there is stated to have been a separate regiment of the
Kambojas in the army of the Pratiharas which was given the
responsibility to defend the northern-eastern parts of their empire
adjoining with the Palas of Bengal
. When the fortunes of the Palas
sagged low after the death of Narayanapala in early 10th century, these
Kambojas, the military associates of the Pratiharas had seized Gauda
from Pala king Rajyapala and laid the foundation of the Kamboja empire
in north-west Bengal.
History and Culture of the Indian People, 1968, p 49, Dr Ramesh Chandra
Majumdar, Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Bhāratīya Itihāsa Samiti - India;
Hindu Civilization; 1936, p 283, Dr Radhakumud Mookerji - Civilization;
Great Men of India, 1939, p 15, L. F. Rushbrook Williams.
- ^ "Afghan". Ch. M. Kieffer. Encyclopædia Iranica Online Edition. December 15, 1983. Retrieved 2010-09-27.
- ^ Ethnic
Settlements in Ancient India, 1955, p 51, Dr Sashi Bhusan Chaudhuri;
Histoire du bouddhisme indien, 1967, p 110, Etienne Lamotte; East and
West: A quarterly review for the study of missions, 1950, p 28, Istituto
italiano per il Medio ed Estremo Oriente; The Ancient Geography of
India: By Alexander Cunningham, 1975, p xvi, Alexander Cunningham;
History of Indian Buddhism: From the Origins to the Saka Era, 1988, p
100, Etienne Lamotte, Sara Webb-Boin; The Indian Historical Quarterly,
1925, p 104, India; Cf: The History and Culture of the Indian People,
1977, p 45, Ramesh Chandra Majumdar, Achut Dattatrya Pusalker, Bharatiya
Vidya Bhavan, A. K. Majumdar, Dilip Kumar Ghose, Vishvanath Govind
- ^ Encyclopedia
of Religions Or Faiths of Man Part 1: V. 1, 2003, p 555, J. G. R.
Forlong; History of Indian Buddhism: From the Origins to the Saka Era,
1988, p 105, Etienne Lamotte, Sara Webb-Boin - History.
- ^ Hindu
Civilization, 1936, p 283, Dr Radhakumud Mookerji - Civilization;
Sīmevarūna parata jā!: Tīna aṅkī aitihāsika naṭaka, 1963, Bāḷa
Kolhaṭakara, Balkrishna Hari Kolhatkar.
- ^ a b Ashtadshyayi: Sutra IV-1, 110; Nadadi gana IV-1, 99.
- ^ Pliny: Historia Naturalis, VI.21.8-23.11.
- ^ List of Indian races:
"Then next to these towards the Indus come, in an order which is easy
to follow, the Amatae, Bolingae, Gallitalutae, Dimuri, Megari, Ordabae,
Mese; after these the Uri and Sileni. Immediately beyond come deserts
extending for 250 miles. These being passed, we come to the Organagae,
Abaortae, Sibarae, Suertae, and after these to deserts as extensive as
the former. Then come the Sarophages, Sorgae, Baraomatae, and the
Umbrittae, who consist of twelve tribes, each possessing two cities, and
the Aseni, who possess three cities. Their capital is Bucephala, built
where Alexander's famous horse of that name was buried. Hillmen follow
next, inhabiting the base of Caucasus (Hindukush), the Soleadae, and the
Sondrae; and if we cross to the other side of the Indus and follow its
course downward we meet the Samarabriae, Sambruceni, Bisambritae, Osii,
Antixeni, and the Taxillae with a famous city. Then succeeds a level
tract of country known by the general name of Amanda, whereof the tribes
are four in number the Peucolaitae, Arsagalitae, Geretae, Asoi. Many
writers, however, do not give the river Indus as the western boundary of
India, but include within it four satrapies,--the Gedrosi, Arachotae,
Arii, Paropamisadae, making the river Cophes its furthest limit; though
others prefer to consider all these as belonging to the Arii." (See:
Ancient India as described by Megasthenes and Arrian, Trans. of the
fragments of the Indika of Megasthenes collected by Dr. Schwanbeck and
of the 1st part of the Indika of Arrian, by J.W. McCrindle. With intr.,
notes. Repr., with additions, from the 'Indian antiquary', 1877, pp
149-151 See link: 
- ^ Proposed by M. de St. Martini.
- ^ See: Arrian, Anabasis Alexandri, 4B, XXV.
- ^ Based
on epic evidence (MBH 7.4.5), scholars state that "Hazara" and
"Abhisara" had formed parts of ancient Kamboja (See: Political History
of Ancient India, 1953, p 248, H. C. Raychaudhury; Studies in the
Geography of Ancient and Medieval India,1990, p 203, D. C. Sircar; A
History of India, 1973, p 71, Narendra Krishna Sinha, Anil Chandra
Banerjee, Nisith Ranjan Ray).
- ^ Ibid., p 151, fn, para 2.
- ^ See:
Alexander the Great, Sources and Studies, p 236, Dr W. W. Tarn;
Political History of Indian People, 1996, p 232, Dr H. C. Raychaudhury,
Dr B. N. Mukerjee
- ^ Annals
and Antiquities of Rajasthan, Reprint (2002), Vol I, p. 64. Also see:
pp. 51-54, 87, 95; Vol-2, P 2, James Tod; The Cyclopædia of India and of
Eastern and Southern Asia, 1885, p 196, Edward Balfour; The racial
history of India, 1944, p 814-15, Chandra Chakraberty - Ethnology;
Literary History of Ancient India in Relation to Its Racial and
Linguistic Affiliations, 1953, pp 148, 152, Chandra Chakraberty -
- ^ a b Aruppa-Niddesa 10.28.
- ^ Samangalavilasini, Vol I, p 124
- ^ Political
History of Ancient India, 1953, p 149, Dr Hemchandra Raychaudhuri,
University of Calcutta - India; Some Kṣatriya Tribes of Ancient India,
1975, Kshatriyas; Tribes in Ancient India, 1943, p 4, Dr Bimala Churn
Law - Ethnology; Geographical and Economic Studies in the Mahābhārata:
Upāyana Parva, 1945, p 36, Dr Moti Chandra - India; Dictionary of Pali
Proper Names: Pali-English, 2003, p 526, G. P. Malalasekera - Reference;
The Mahāvastu, 1949, p 179, John James Jones - Legends, Buddhist;
Political and social movements in ancient Panjab, 1964, p 226, Dr Buddha
Prakash - Punjab (India).
- ^ Note:
In Prakrit, "Assa" means horse (See: Pali-english Dictionary, 1993, p
90, Dr T. W. Rhys Davids, Dr William Stede - Foreign Language Study;
East and West: A quarterly review for the study of missions, 1950, p 28,
Istituto italiano per il Medio ed Estremo Oriente - Art, Asian.
- ^ Linguistic
Science in the Nineteenth Century: Methods and Results, 1931, p 22,
Holger Pedersen, John Webster Spargo - Philology; The Discovery of
Language: Linguistic Science in the Nineteenth Century, 1965, p 22,
Holger Pedersen, John Webster Spargo.
- ^ Term
Aśva/Aśwa may itself mean cavalier, horseman, Asvaka. See Mahabharata
Sabhaparava, Section LXVII. Otherwise Asvaka/Aswaka = "of the
- ^ Ethnic
Settlements in Ancient India: A Study on the Puranic Lists of the
Peoples of Bharatavarsa, 1955, p 51, Sashi Bhusan Chaudhuri - Ethnology.
- ^ Military History of India, 1980, p 38, Hemendra Chandra Kar - History.
- ^ Political History of Ancient India, 1953, pp 245,149, Hemchandra Raychaudhuri, University of Calcutta.
- ^ Inter-state
and International Relations in Ancient India: Under the Mauryas and the
Guptas, 2001, p 2, Shailendra Kumar Srivastava.
- ^ Proceedings...
World Sanskrit Conference, 1985, p 783, International Association of
Sanskrit Studies, International Association of Sanskrit Studies.
- ^ Der
Islam: Zeitschrift für Geschichte und Kultur des islamischen Orients,
1960, p 58, Maymūn ibn al-Qāsim Tabarānī - Islam; Prisoner on a Bus:
Travels Through Pakistan, 2003, p 131, Salman Rashid - Railroads.
- ^ Ancient
Indian History, 1988, Madhavan Arjunan Pillai - History; Aspects of
Political Ideas and Institutions in Ancient India: 2d Ed. 1968, p 224,
Ram Sharan Sharma - India- Politics and government.
- ^ Samangalavilasini, Vol I, p 124.
- ^ Manorathapūranī, Anguttara Commentary, Vol I, p 399 (S.H.B.).
- ^ Visuddhi magga, (P.T.S.), I, p 332.
- ^ The Mahāvastu, 1949, p 179, John James Jones.
- ^ Jataka ed. Fausboll, iv, p 464. Cf: MBH VI.90.3.
- ^ Some Kṣatriya Tribes of Ancient India, 1975, p 238, B. C. Law - Kshatriyas.
- ^ Geographical and Economic Studies in the Mahābhārata: Upāyana Parva, 1945, p 36, Moti Chandra.
- ^ Historie
du Bouddhisme Indien, p 110, E. Lamotte; also: History of Indian
Buddhism: From the Origins to the Saka Era, 1988, p 100, Etienne
Lamotte, Sara Webb-Boin.
- ^ Political and social movements in ancient Panjab (from the Vedic age upto [sic] the Maurya period),1964, p 226, Buddha Prakash.
- ^ Dictionary of Pali Proper Names: Pali-English, 2003, p 526, G. P. Malalasekera.
- ^ The
Indian Historical Quarterly, 1949-50, Vol 25-26, India; The Achaemenids
and India: By Sudhakar Chattopadhyaya. 2d Rev. Ed, 1974, p 58, Sudhakar
- ^ Political History of Ancient India, 1996, p 577, fn 22, H. C. Raychaudhury, B. N. Mukerjee.
- ^ Arrian Anabasis, Book 4b, Chapters XXII, XXIII, XXIV, XXV, XXVI, XXVIII, trans. E.J. Chinnock (1893).
- ^ Hindu
Polity: A Constitutional History of India in Hindu Times [Parts I and
II], 1955, p 140, Kashi Prasad Jayaswal - Constitutional history.
- ^ Handbuch
der Orientalistik, 1991, p 136, Mary Boyce, Roger Beck, Bertold Spuler,
Frantz Grenet, Hartwig Altenmüller; Ancient Persia, 2001, p 111, Josef
Wiesehofer, Azizeh Azodi; Political History of Ancient India, 1996, p
610-613, H. C. Raychaudhury, B. N. Mukerjee.
- ^ See: Political History of Ancient India, 1996, pp 601-608, Commentary, Dr H. C. Raychaudhuru, Dr B. N. Mukerjee.
- ^ The
Aramaic epigraphic inscriptions of king Asoka have been found mostly in
the Kamboja area, the Prakrritc in the Gandhara and the Greek in the
Yona area (Ref: Political History of Ancient India, 19696, Commentary,
pp 610, 617, B. N. Mukerjee). The Kambojas being Iranian understood the
Aramaic language well which had been the administrative language of the
Achaemenids and was also continued during Mauryan rule. The Aspasioi
Kambojas living in Kabul/Lamghan/Begram regions were completely under
the Iranian influence (as their name indicates (Iranian Aspa = horse) from whose territory three Aramaic inscriptions of Asoka have been discovered. The Assakenoi (Asvakas -- Sanskrit Asva= horse)
were ethnically related to the Aspasioi people but had different
cultural/language set-up (Dr Buddha Prakash) since they were relatively
closer to the Indian border and were thus more exposed to Indian
cultural and linguistic influence and therefore understood the Prakrit
language. Asoka's Rock Edicts V and XIII found at Shahbazgarhi and
Mansehra are found written in Prakrit language and Kharoshti script.
- ^ On
the "Kambojas finding a prominent mention as a separate (autonomous)
unit even in the Thirteenth Rock Edict of king Asoka", see: Asoka and
His Inscriptions, 1968, p 149, Beni Madhab Barua, Ishwar Nath Topa;
Political History of Ancient India, 1996, p 256, H. C. Raychaudhury, B.
- ^ a b Political History of Ancient India, 1996, pp 601, 610, H. C. Raychaudhury, B. N. Mukerjee.
- ^ Cf:Indian
in New Light, 1989, p 263, K. D. Sethna; Hindu Polity, A Constitutional
History of India in Hindu Times, 1978, p 140, K. P. Jayswal.
- ^ Political History of Ancient India, 1996, p 601, H. C. Raychaudhury, B. N. Mukerjee.
- ^ Cf: Indian in New Light, 1989, p 263, K. D. Sethna.
- ^ Ancient
India as Described by Megasthenês and Arrian: Being a Translation of
the Fragments of the Indika of Megasthenês Collected by Dr. Schwanbeck,
and of the First Part of the Indika of Arrian, 1877, p 152-53,
Megasthenes, Trans: E. A. Schwanbeck, Arrian, Trans: John Watson
- ^ Hindu Polity, A Constitutional History of India in Hindu Times, 1978, p 140, Dr K. P. Jayswal.
- ^ Anguttara Nikaya: Vol I, p 213, Vol IV, pp 252, 256, 260 etc.
- ^ Kshatriya
Kamboja kingdom, Ashtadhyyayi IV.1.168-175; also as Parvatiya
Asavakayana and Asvayana Kamboja clans of Ashtadshyayi: Sutra IV-1, 110
(Nadadi gana IV-1, 99) Sutra IV.1.173 respectively.
- ^ Kautiliya's Arathashastra, 1956, Book II, Dr R. Shamashastri .
- ^ Asoka's
Edicts mention Gandharas only once and thus give comparatively much
less prominence to them compared to the Yonas and the Kambojas whom they
refer directly and indirectly in three separate Inscriptions as noted
- ^ The
Buddhist texts do refer to the Assaka Mahajanapada located on Godavary
in southern India (Deccan) but not to the Asvakas of Kabul valley.
- ^ Hindu Polity, Part I II, 1978, p 121, Dr K. P. Jayaswal.
- ^ Aśva.yuddha.kushalah:
Mahabharata 7.7.14; See also: Vishnudharmotra Purana, Part II, Chapter
118; Post Gupta Polity (AD 500–700): A Study of the Growth of Feudal
Elements and Rural Administration 1972, p 136, Ganesh Prasad Sinha;
Wisdom in the Puranas 1969, p 64, professor Sen Sarma etc.
- ^ Mahabharata
(Bhismaparava, Chap 9) and Vishnupurana (Topographical Lists: Peoples
and the Countries, 1864, p 164, Trans: H. H. Wilson), do refer to the
Asvakas but place this people with the Vidarbhas, Rupavahikas,
Pamsurastras and Goparastras etc in the southern division of ancient
- ^ .
- tatah Kamboja.mukhyanam nadijana.n cha vajinam |
- Arattanam Mahijana.n Sindhujana.n cha sarvashah || 3 ||
- Vanayujana.n shubhrana.n tatha parvatavasinam |
- ye chapare tittiraja javana vatara.nhasah || 4 ||
- (MBH 6.90.3-4)..
- ^ Ramayana I.6.22.
- ^ Kautiliya Arthashastra, R. Shamashastri, book, II, Ch 30.
- ^ Said
to be one of the nine Gems of King Vikramaditya (Our Heritage, 1982, p
85, Sanskrit College (Calcutta, India). Dept. of Post-Graduate Training
- ^ Kishkindi Kanda, XLI, 17.
- ^ Mahabharata VIII.8.18-20 in reference to Karana's conquest, Mahabharata VI.9.
- ^ Vayu Purana 45.127.
- ^ Brahamanda Purana II.16.
- ^ Visnudharmottara Mahapurana, CXh IX.
- ^ Section LVII, 48.
- ^ See also: The Vishńu Puráńa,1865, p 164, Horace Hayman Wilson, Fitzedward Hall; Ancient Indian Tribes, ed 2007, p 86, B. C. Law.
- ^ Padama Purana, Svargakhanda, Ch. 6.39; Geographical Data in Early Puranas, 1972, p 287, M. R. Singh.
- ^ Padama
Purana, Svargakhanda, Ch III; Journal of Indian History, 1949, p 88, fn
13, University of Kerala Dept. of History, University of Allahabad
Dept. of Modern Indian History, University of Travancore, University of
- ^ According
Brhatsamhita, in the north-west are Mandavyas, Tusharas, Talas, Halas,
Madras, Asmakas, Kulutas......See: Brhat Samhita of Varahamihira,1996, p
177, M.R. Bhat; See also: Trans. Kern, J.R.A.S. Vol V, p 85; Also:
Topographical list of Brhat-Samhita, Indian Antiquarium, 1898, p 174,
- ^ Ashtadhyayi IV.1.173....Avantyasmakah.
- ^ Vishnudharmotra Purana, Part II, Ch 118 .
- ^ Post
Gupta Polity (AD 500-700): A Study of the Growth of Feudal Elements and
Rural Administration 1972, p 136, Ganesh Prasad Sinha; Military Wisdom
in the Purānas, 1979, p 64, Prof P. Sensarma; Ancient Indian
Civilization, 1985, p 120, Grigoriĭ Maksimovich Bongard-Levin; Kashmir
Polity, c. 600-1200 A.D., 1986, p 237, V. N. Drabu; Polity in the Agni
Purāna, 1965, Bambahadur Mishra; etc.
- ^ Polity in the Agni Purāna, 1965, p 175, B. b. Mishra - Puranas, Agnipurāṇa.
- tatha Yavana Kamboja Mathuram.abhitash cha ye |
- ete 'aśava.yuddha.kushalahdasinatyasi charminah || 5 ||
- (MBH 12.101.5, Kumbhakonam Ed).
- ^ Hindu Polity, A Constitutional History of India in Hindu Times, 1978, pp 121, 140, K. P. Jayswal.
- Panchaldeshamarambhya mlechhad dakishinahpurvatah |
- Kambojadesho deveshi vajiraashi.prayanah || 24 ||
- Shakati-Sangam-Tantra, 'Shatpanchashadddeshavibhag', Verse 24.
- ^ A View of the History, Literature, and Mythology of the Hindoos, 1818, p 559, William Ward - India.
- ^ History, Literature and Religion of the Hindoos, 1820, p 451, William Ward.
- ^ Journal
of Royal Asiatic Society, pp 98-100: History and Culture of Indian
People, the Age of Imperial Unity, Vol II, p 45, Dr A. D. Pusalkar, Dr
R. C. Majumdar, Dr Munshi etc.
- ^ Arthashastra 11.1.4.
- ^ Brhatsamhita, 5.35
- ^ History
of Panjab, Vol I, p 226, Dr L. M. Joshi, Dr Fauja Singh; Ancient
Kamboja, People and the Country, 1981, p 247, Dr J. L. Kamboj; cf: A
Historical Dictionary of Indian Food (Oxford India Paperbacks), p 91, K.
T. Achaya February 2001.
- ^ Ancient India, 2000, p 261, Dr V. D. Mahajan.
- ^ Ancient Kamboja, People and the Country, 1981, p 11, 226.
- ^ The Gates of India, p 102-03.
- ^ The Pakistan review, 1962, p 15, Published by Ferozsons, History.
- ^ Historie du Bouddhisme Indien, p 110, E. Lamotte.
- ^ Essai sur les origines du mythe d'Alexandre: 336-270 av. J. C:, 1978, p 152, Paul Goukowsky.
- ^ History of Indian Buddhism: From the Origins to the Saka Era, 1988, p 100 - History.
- ^ See
also: East and West, 1950, pp 28, 157-58, Istituto italiano per il
Medio ed Estremo Oriente, Editor, Prof Giuseppe Tucci, Co-editors Prof
Mario Bussagli, Prof Lionello Lanciotti.
- ^ Tree
and Serpent Worship Or Illustrations of Mythology Art in India:
In the 1st and 4th Century After Christ, 2004 edition, p 48, J.
- ^ Alexandra's Invasion of India, p 38; Megasthenes and Arrian, p 180, J. McCrindle.
- ^ Political History of Ancient India, 1996, p 133, p 216 ffn 2, p 576; Commentary Dr B. N. Mukerjee; cf: MBH VI.90.3.
- ^ Journal
of Royal Asiatic Society, 1848, p 15.; Origin; Original Sanskrit Texts
on the Origin and History of the People of India: Their Religion and
Institutions, 1874, p 355/56, Johm Muir;
- ^ Yauan
Chawang, Vol I, p 284 by Thomas Watters; Si-yu-ki, by Hiuen Tsang, pp
54/55, Trans S. Beal (1906); Records of Buddhist Kingdoms by Fa-hien, p
34, Trans James Legge (1886); Political History of Ancient India, 1996, p
133 fn 5, 134, Dr H. C. raychaudhury.
- ^ Anabasis Alexandri, 4B, chapter xxiii, xxiv, xxvi, by Arrian, Trans. E.J. Chinnock (1893).
- ^ Geography of the Puranas p 143.
- ^ See: Kautiliya's Arthashastra 11.1.1-4.
- ^ Varahamihira in his Brhat Samhita also calls the Kambojas as Sastr.varta i.e a people living by agriculture, trade and warfare (See: Brhat Samhita 5.35ab).
- ^ The
Ancient Kamboja, People and Country, 1981, pp 11, 152, 226, 238,
247-48, 271-272, 276, 282, 292, 296, J. L. Kamboj, Dr Satyavrat Shastri;
The Journal of the Bihar Research Society, 1930, p 289, Bihar Research
Society - History.
- ^ Whether
the above interpretation is correct or not, there definitely seems to
be some sort of connection between the Asvakas and the Mauriyas.
Scholars like Dr H. C. Seth, B. M. Barua, Dr H. R. Gupta, Dr Rattanjit
Pal, Gur Rattan Pal Singh, K. S. Dardi and several others assert that
Chandragupta Maurya, in all probability, hailed from Asvaka Ksatriya
branch. (See also: Saśigupta.
- ^ History
of Panjab, Vol I, (Editors): Dr Fauja Singh, Dr L. M. Josh, Publication
Bureau, Panjabi University, Patiala; see also Ancient Kamboja, People
and country, 1981, pp 271-72, 278, Dr J. L. Kamboj; These Kamboj People,
1979, pp 119, 192, K. S. Dardi.
- ^ Panjab
Past and Present, pp 9-10, Dr Buddha Parkash; See also: History of
Porus, pp 12, 38; Glimpses of Ancient Panjab, 1966, p 23, Dr Buddha
Prakash - Punjab (India); Raja Poros, 1990, Publication Buareau, Punjabi
University, Patiala; History of Poros, 1967, pp 12,39, Dr Buddha
- ^ See also: Proceedings, 1965, p 39, by Punjabi University. Dept. of Punjab Historical Studies - History.
- ^ Diodorus
in McCrindle, p 270; History of Civilizations of Central Asia, 1999, p
76, Ahmad Hasan Dani, Vadim Mikhaĭlovich Masson, János Harmatta, Boris
Abramovich Litvinovskiĭ, Clifford Edmund Bosworth, UNESCO - Asia,
- ^ Writes Diodorus: "Undismayed by the greatness of their danger, the Aśvakayanas
(Kambojas) drew their ranks together in the form of a ring within which
they placed their women and children to guard them on all sides against
their assailants. As they had now become desperate, and by their
audacity and feats of valour, made the conflict in which they closed,
hot work for the enemy--great was the astonishment and alarm which the
peril of the crisis had created. For, as the combatants were locked
together fighting hand-to-hand, death and wounds were dealt round in
every variety of form. While many were thus wounded, and not a few
killed, the women, taking the arms of the fallen, fought side by side
with their men. Accordingly, some of them who had supplied themselves
with arms, did their best to cover their husbands with their shields,
while the others, who were without arms, did much to impede the enemy by
flinging themselves upon them and catching hold of their shields. The
defenders, however, after fighting desperately along with their wives,
were at last overpowered by superior numbers, and thus met a glorious
death which they would have disdained to exchange for the life of
dishonour" (See: Diodorus in McCrindle, p 269/270; History of
Civilizations of Central Asia, 1999, p 76, Ahmad Hasan Dani, Vadim
Mikhaĭlovich Masson, János Harmatta, Boris Abramovich Litvinovskiĭ,
Clifford Edmund Bosworth, Unesco - Asia, Central; History of Punjab,
1997, p 229, Editors: Dr Fauja Singh, Dr L. M. Joshi; Classical Accounts
of India, p 112-113; Ancient Kamboja, People and the Country, 1981, p
283-286, Dr J. L. Kamboj; The Kambojas Through the Ages, 2005, p 134,
- ^ History of Punjab, Vol I, 1997, p 229.
- ^ Arrian writes them Assakenoi. Strabo also calls them Assakanoi, but Curtius calls them Assacani.
- ^ Indische Alterthumskunde, Vol I, fn 6; also Vol II, p 129, et al.
- ^ "The name Afghan has been derived from Asvakan, the Assakenoi of Arrian... " (Megasthenes and Arrian, p 180. See also: Alexander's Invasion of India, p 38; J. W. McCrindle).
- ^ Etude Sur la Geog Grecque c, pp 39-47, M. V. de Saint Martin.
- ^ This
includes Dr H. H. Wilson, L. Bishop, W. Crooke, H. K. Kakar, J. C.
Vidyalnar, Chandra Chakravorty, Dr M. R. Singh, P. Smith, N. L. Dey,
Henry Yule, A. C. Burnell, Dr. J. L. Kamboj, S. Kirpal Singh and several
- ^ Literary History of Ancient India in Relation to Its Racial and Linguistic Affiliations, 1970, p 17, Chandra Chakraberty.
- ^ Shi jie jian wen, 1980, p 68, Shi jie zhi shi chu ban she.
- ^ Ref: Sva, 1915, p 113, Christopher Molesworth Birdwood.
- ^ Al-Hind,
The Making of Indo-Islamic World, 2002, p 84, Andre Wink; Journal of
Indian History Golden Jubilee Volume, 1973, p 470, University of Kerala,
Department of History.
- ^ Historical
Geography of Madhya Pradesh, From Early Records, 1977, p 3, Dr P. K.
Bhattacharya; Proceedings of the World of Sanskrit Conference. 1985, p
783, International association of Sanskrit.
- ^ The Indian Historical Quarterly, 1963, p 103; Some Kṣatriya Tribes of Ancient India, 1924, p 239, Dr B. C. Law.
- ^ Hindu Polity, 1978, pp 121, 140, Dr K. P. Jayswal.
- Panchaldeshamarambhya mlechhad dakishinahpurvatah |
- Kambojadesho deveshi vajiraashi.prayanah || 24 ||
- (Shakati-Sangam-Tantra, 'Shatpanchashadddeshavibhag', Verse 24).
- ^ History,
Literature and Religion of the Hindus, 1820, p 451; A View of the
History, Literature, and Mythology of the Hindus, 1818, p 559, William
Ward - India.
- ^ India in Early Greek Literature: academic dissertation, 1989, p 225, Klaus Karttunen - Greek literature.
- ^ A
history of Zoroastrianism: Zoroastraianism Under Macedonian and Roman
Rule, 1991, p 129, Mary Boyce, Frantz Grenet, Roger Beck.
- ^ The
Social and Military Position of the Ruling Caste in Ancient India,
1889, p 257, Edward Washburn Hopkins; Journal of the American Oriental
Society, 1889, p 257, American Oriental Society - Oriental philology.
- ^ War in Ancient India, 1944, p 178, V. R. Ramachandra Dikshitar - Military art and science.
- ^ Herodotus, IV.65-66.
- ^ History
of Persian Empire, p 232, Dr A. M. Olmstead; Arrian's Anabasis III,
8.3-6; Political History of Ancient India, 1996, p 216, Dr Raychaudhury.
- ^ Ashtadhyayi Sutra IV.3.91.
- ^ India as Known to Pāṇini, pp 49, 437, Dr V. S. Aggarwala.
- ^ MBH 5.19.21-23.
- ^ MBH 5.155.30-33.
- ^ Ramayana, 1.54, 1.55.
- asti tava Shaka-Yavana-Kirata-Kamboja-Parasika-Bahlika parbhutibhih
- Chankyamatipragrahittaishcha Chandergupta Parvateshvara
- balairudidhibhiriva parchalitsalilaih samantaad uprudham Kusumpurama
- (Mudra-Rakshasa 2).
- ^ Kalika Purana, III (6), 22-40.
- ^ MBH 3.188.34-36.
- ^ Harivamsa 14.1-19
- ^ Bhagvata Purana, 10.52.22.
- ^ Bhagavata Purana 2.7.35.
- ^ Munghyr
Inscriptions B.8, V.13; See also: Epigraphia Indica, Vol XVIII,
1926-27, p 305; Ancient Kamboja, People and the Country, 1981, p 9-10,
Dr J. L. Kamboj.
- ^ Epigraphia Indica, XXII.153.
- ^ History
of Ancient Bengal, 1971, p 127, Dr R. C. Majumdar; The Dacca University
Studies, Vol I, No 2, April 1936, p 132; Also: Indian Historical
Quarterly, XV-4, Dec. 1939, p 511, Dr H. C. Ray; The Kambojas Through
the Ages, 2005, pp 216, 228, S Kirpal Singh; Ancient Kamboja, People and
the Country, 1981, pp 330-332.
- ^ Indian Historical Quarterly, XV-4, Dec, 1939, p 511 Dr H. C. Ray.
- ^ History of Ancient Bengal, 1971, pp 182-83, Dr R. C. Majumdar.
- ^ Indian Historical Quarterly, 1963, p 625.
- ^ Dynastic History of Magadha, 1977, p 208.
- ^ Epigraphia Indiaca, XVIII, p 304ff.
- ^ The
Dynamics of Santal Traditions in Present Society, 2003, p 208 etc;
Journal of Oriental studies, 1954, p 381, University of Hong Kong,
Institute of Oriental Studies (Also see refs quoted by the authors)
- ^ The Dynastic History of the Northern India, p 311, fn.1, Dr H. C. Raychaudhury.
- ^ The
Kambojas Through the Ages, 2005, pp 216, 228, S Kirpal Singh; Ancient
Kamboja, People and the Country, 1981, pp 330-332, Dr Kamboj.