By going through these Maharashtra State Board Class 11 History Notes Chapter 13 India, Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia students can recall all the concepts quickly.

Maharashtra State Board Class 11 History Notes Chapter 13 India, Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia

India and Sri Lanka:
The history of Sri Lanka and India has remained close-knit from ancient times. ‘Deepvamsa’, ‘Mahavamsa’, ‘Chullavamsa’ are the three texts that tell us about the Indian and Sri Lankan dynasties, their mutual relations and the historical events, in the times before and after Gautama Buddha. These texts are known as ‘Vamsagranthas’.

According to the Vamsagranthas, the first kingdom of Sri Lanka was established in the 6th century C.E. and was known as ‘Tambapanni (Tamrapanni)’. Another name of the kingdom was ‘Rajrat’. Greek historians have mentioned it as ‘Taprobane’.

The festival known as ‘Unduvapa Poya’ is celebrated every year in Sri Lanka, on the full moon in the month of December, in the memory of Theri Sanghamitta’s arrival.

Maharashtra Board Class 11 History Notes Chapter 13 India, Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia

The important cultural places in Sri Lanka: Anuradhpur – Mihinthale: Thera Mahinda and Theri Sanghamitta stayed at Mihinthale near Anuradhpaur. It facilitated the establishment and spread of Buddhism in Sri Lanka. Important Stupas at Anuradhpur – Mihinthale: ‘Kantakchetiya’ is one of the earliest stupas at Mihinthale.

An inscription near the stupa mentions that the revenue collected from a nearby tank and the surrounding land was reserved as a gift for the maintenance of this stupa. The stupa erected on the remains (Shareerik Dhatu/asthi) of Thera Mahinda at Mihinthale, is known as Ambasthal Thupa’.

Pulatthinagar (Polonnaruwa): The city of Polonnaruwa is mentioned in Chullvamasa by the name, ‘Pulatthinagar’. In the 10th century C.E. the Chola emperor Rajraja I attacked Sri Lanka and razed Anuradhpur completely. Then he established his capital at Polonnaruwa. He renamed Polannaruwa as ‘Jananathmangalam’ and built a Shiva temple there.

Dambulla and Sigiriya: The caves at Dambulla in Sri Lanka are declared as World Cultural Heritage. There are images of Gautama Buddha and the Bodhisattvas inside the caves. The roofs of five caves at Dambulla are decorated with paintings.

There is an enormous rock in the mountains near the city of Dambulla. A fort and a palace were built on this rock. At its entrance, a huge image of a lion was carved in the rock. The place was named ‘Sigiriya’ after this lion. Sigiriya murals are compared with the murals at Ajanta.

Maharashtra Board Class 11 History Notes Chapter 13 India, Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia

India and Southeast Asia:
There are very few references in the Indian literature to the Indian settlements and kingdoms in Southeast Asia. However, the court records of Chinese emperors provide considerable information in this regard. The ancient Indian literature refers to the land of Southeast Asia as ‘Suvarabhumi’ (the Land of Gold). The trading relations between India and Southeast Asia began in the 1st century B.C.E. and continued through the 1st century C.E.

The term ‘Southeast Asia’ was coined in the times of the Second World War The Buddhist texts mention a ‘Suvarnabhumi’.

The scholars divide Southeast Asia into two parts based on its geographic features:

  • The Mainland: This region is also known as Indo-China. It comprises the countries of Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam and also the western region of Malaysia.
  • The Maritime region: It comprises the Malaya peninsula, the eastern region of Malaysia as well as Indonesia.

Myanmar: ‘Myanmar’ is a neighbouring country of India, adjacent to its northeast border. It was earlier known as ‘Brahmdesh’. In the 2nd century B.C.E. There were city-states known as ‘Pyu’ in the north and central regions of Myanmar. Some new Pyu cities came into existence at a later period. Among them the cities of ‘Halin’ and ‘Shrikshetra’ were important.

Thailand: The ancient Thai people referred to their country as ‘Mueng Thai’. However, it was known in the world as ‘Siam’. In the 20th century, its name was changed to ‘Thailand’. Thailand was ruled from the 6th to the 11th century by ‘Mon’ people. At that time, it was known as ‘Dvaravati’. Indian culture was introduced and spread in Thailand in the ‘Dvaravati’ period. Th.n Indian traditions of sculpture, literature, ethics, judicial science, etc. had a great role in shaping up the Mon culture.

Maharashtra Board Class 11 History Notes Chapter 13 India, Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia

Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia:
In the colonial period Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, these three countries together were known as ‘Indo-China’. During the 8th – 12th century C.E. the Mon and Khmer people ruled over Cambodia. Khmer empire originated in Cambodia.

a. Funan:
This was a kingdom in Vietnam which existed in the Delta region of the river Mekong. Funan is known mainly through the Chinese records. The ‘Han’ dynasty ruled in China in the 3rd century C.E. When the rule of Han dynasty was ended, China disintegrated into three parts.

Because of it, the southern kingdom of China was not left with any alternative path to reach the Silk Route Hence, the king of the southern kingdom sent some people to explore the sea route. They found a kingdom in the delta region of the Mekong. They named it ‘Funan’.

b. Champa:
‘Champa’ was an ancient kingdom in the coastal region of Vietnam. Several Sanskrit inscriptions in Brahmi script have been found there. Champa was named after the ‘Cham’ tribe. The names of the cities in Champa were ‘Indrapur’, ‘Amaravati’, ‘Vijay’, ‘Kauthara’ and ‘Panduranga’. The city of Vijay was the capital of Champa kingdom.

c. Laos:
Laos is a landlocked country. The population of Laos is mainly composed of the ‘Lao’ people who came to Laos from southern China. The name of the kingdom of Laos was ‘Lao Sang’. This kingdom was in existence during 14th-18th century. Lao Sang was attacked by Thailand in the 19th century. Lao Sang could not survive the attack. In the latter half of the 19th century, the French established their administrative centre in Vientiane, the capital of Laos.

d. Cambodia:
Cambodia was known as ‘Kambujadesha’ in ancient times. Its history is known from the inscriptions installed in the precincts of its temples. These inscriptions are in Sanskrit and Khmer languages. The first kingdom, established in Cambodia was known by the name of ‘China’s.

The people who established Chenla were known as ‘Khmer’. The influence of Indian culture in Cambodia dates back to the Chenla period. The kingdom of Chenla was established by Jayavarman II. He was coronated in 802 C.E. His capital’s name was ‘Hariharalaya’.

Maharashtra Board Class 11 History Notes Chapter 13 India, Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia

Malaysia and Indonesia:
Before the arrival of the Europeans, there have been three kingdoms in Malaysia. The ‘Vayu Purana’ mentions Malay peninsula as ‘Malaydvipa’. The Chinese Bhikkhu I-Tsing/ Yi-Jing (7th century C.E.) had visited the ‘Malayu’ kingdom. Ptolemy has mentioned Malayu as ‘Maleu Kolon’ and ‘Golden Chersonese’ (golden peninsula). An inscription in the Brihadishvara temple in Tanjore mentions it as ‘Malaiyur’. Malayu was one of the kingdoms conquered by the Chola King Rajendra. The Chinese court records also mention ‘Malayu’.

a. Srivijaya: This kingdom proved to be more powerful among all kingdoms who competed with each other. This kingdom originated in Sumatra.

Malayu and other neighbouring kingdoms who were weaker than Srivijaya were gradually merged into it. In the 11th century C.E. Srivijya became weaker while facing the Chola invasion. In the 14th century C.E. ‘Parameswaran’ alias ‘Eskandar Shah’, the last king of Malayu established the first Sultanate of Malaya.

b. Majapahita: In the 13th century C.E., in Eastern Java, arose a kingdom known as ‘Majapahita’. This was the last kingdom, with Indian cultural traits. The name of the founder king of Majapahita was, ‘Vijaya’. King Vijaya was successful in sacking Kublai Khan from Java.

c. Shailendra: According to some Indian historians the Shailendra kings hailed from India. However, this opinion is not accepted by all historians. The Shailendras reached the peak of their political power in the 8th – 9th centuries. The Shailendra kings were followers of Buddhism.

d. Matram: There was a kingdom called Mataram contemporary to Shailendra. Its founder king’s name was Sanjaya. During the period of Matram kingdom, ‘Mahabharata’ and ‘Harivamsha’ were translated in Japanese language. Poems in ancient Japanese language are composed in Sanskrit metres like ‘Shardulvikridita’. Poems composed in metres are known as ‘Kakvin’.


→ Precinct – A part of a town/city that has a particular use, where vehicles are not allowed.

→ Landlocked – Completely surrounded by land.

→ Supremacy – The state of being the most powerful.

→ Candi – A Hindu or Buddhist temple in Indonesia.