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India , country that occupies the greater part of South Asia. Its government is a constitutional republic that represents a highly diverse population consisting of thousands of ethnic groups and likely hundreds of languages.
It is known from archaeological evidence that a highly sophisticated urbanized culture—the Indus civilization —dominated the northwestern part of the subcontinent from about to bce.
From that period on, India functioned as a virtually self-contained political and cultural arena, which gave rise to a distinctive tradition that was associated primarily with Hinduism , the roots of which can largely be traced to the Indus civilization. Other religions, notably Buddhism and Jainism , originated in India—though their presence there is now quite small—and throughout the centuries residents of the subcontinent developed a rich intellectual life in such fields as mathematics, astronomy, architecture, literature, music, and the fine arts.
Throughout its history, India was intermittently disturbed by incursions from beyond its northern mountain wall. Especially important was the coming of Islam , brought from the northwest by Arab, Turkish, Persian, and other raiders beginning early in the 8th century ce. Eventually, some of those raiders stayed; by the 13th century much of the subcontinent was under Muslim rule, and the number of Muslims steadily increased. Only after the arrival of the Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama in and the subsequent establishment of European maritime supremacy in the region did India become exposed to major external influences arriving by sea, a process that culminated in the decline of the ruling Muslim elite and absorption of the subcontinent within the British Empire.
Direct administration by the British, which began in , effected a political and economic unification of the subcontinent. When British rule came to an end in , the subcontinent was partitioned along religious lines into two separate countries—India, with a majority of Hindus, and Pakistan , with a majority of Muslims; the eastern portion of Pakistan later split off to form Bangladesh.
Many British institutions stayed in place such as the parliamentary system of government ; English continued to be a widely used lingua franca; and India remained within the Commonwealth. Hindi became the official language and a number of other local languages achieved official status , while a vibrant English-language intelligentsia thrived.
India remains one of the most ethnically diverse countries in the world. Apart from its many religions and sects, India is home to innumerable castes and tribes, as well as to more than a dozen major and hundreds of minor linguistic groups from several language families unrelated to one another. Religious minorities, including Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, and Jains, still account for a significant proportion of the population; collectively, their numbers exceed the populations of all countries except China.
Earnest attempts have been made to instill a spirit of nationhood in so varied a population, but tensions between neighbouring groups have remained and at times have resulted in outbreaks of violence.
At independence, India was blessed with several leaders of world stature, most notably Mohandas Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru , who were able to galvanize the masses at home and bring prestige to India abroad. The country has played an increasing role in global affairs.
The history section of the articles Pakistan and Bangladesh discuss those countries since their creation. It is bounded to the northwest by Pakistan , to the north by Nepal , China , and Bhutan ; and to the east by Myanmar Burma.
Bangladesh to the east is surrounded by India to the north, east, and west. The island country of Sri Lanka is situated some 40 miles 65 km off the southeast coast of India across the Palk Strait and Gulf of Mannar.
The land of India—together with Bangladesh and most of Pakistan—forms a well-defined subcontinent, set off from the rest of Asia by the imposing northern mountain rampart of the Himalayas and by adjoining mountain ranges to the west and east. In area, India ranks as the seventh largest country in the world.
India has two union territories composed entirely of islands: Lakshadweep , in the Arabian Sea, and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands , which lie between the Bay of Bengal and the Andaman Sea.
When the two finally collided approximately 50 million years ago , the northern edge of the Indian-Australian Plate was thrust under the Eurasian Plate at a low angle. The collision reduced the speed of the oncoming plate, but the underthrusting, or subduction, of the plate has continued into contemporary times.
The effects of the collision and continued subduction are numerous and extremely complicated. An important consequence, however, was the slicing off of crustal rock from the top of the underthrusting plate. Those slices were thrown back onto the northern edge of the Indian landmass and came to form much of the Himalayan mountain system. The new mountains—together with vast amounts of sediment eroded from them—were so heavy that the Indian-Australian Plate just south of the range was forced downward, creating a zone of crustal subsidence.
Continued rapid erosion of the Himalayas added to the sediment accumulation, which was subsequently carried by mountain streams to fill the subsidence zone and cause it to sink more. Further information on the geology of India is found in the article Asia. India Article Media Additional Info.
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External Websites. Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. Joseph E. Britannica Quiz. Was Bangladesh once a part of India? Was Gandhi born with the name Mahatma? Learn about government, the Gupta dynasty, and more in this journey through India.
Rajput fort overlooking foreground Jaisalmer, Rajasthan, India, designated a World Heritage site in Get a Britannica Premium subscription and gain access to exclusive content. Subscribe Now. Forested slopes of the foothills of the Himalayan mountains near Kalimpong, northern West Bengal, India. Load Next Page.
This post is a compilation of our most viewed notes on Indian History, which we think our readers should not miss. Check Indian History notes category, if you want to read the complete archives. For Mains topics like Ancient India and Medieval India are not explicitly mentioned in the syllabus, but culture is included which covers many aspects of ancient and medieval periods. Take a Free Test. History and Culture are very related topics, particularly with respect to ancient and medieval India. Asoka and Buddhism are deeply bonded, the same way we cannot study Shah Jahan without commenting on Taj Mahal.
India , country that occupies the greater part of South Asia. Its government is a constitutional republic that represents a highly diverse population consisting of thousands of ethnic groups and likely hundreds of languages. It is known from archaeological evidence that a highly sophisticated urbanized culture—the Indus civilization —dominated the northwestern part of the subcontinent from about to bce. From that period on, India functioned as a virtually self-contained political and cultural arena, which gave rise to a distinctive tradition that was associated primarily with Hinduism , the roots of which can largely be traced to the Indus civilization. Other religions, notably Buddhism and Jainism , originated in India—though their presence there is now quite small—and throughout the centuries residents of the subcontinent developed a rich intellectual life in such fields as mathematics, astronomy, architecture, literature, music, and the fine arts.
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India , country that occupies the greater part of South Asia.
Беккер понимал, что через несколько секунд его застрелят или собьют, и смотрел вперед, пытаясь найти какую-нибудь лазейку, но шоссе с обеих сторон обрамляли крутые, покрытые гравием склоны. Прозвучал еще один выстрел. Он принял решение. Под визг покрышек, в снопе искр Беккер резко свернул вправо и съехал с дороги. Колеса мотоцикла подпрыгнули, ударившись о бетонное ограждение, так что он едва сумел сохранить равновесие. Из-под колес взметнулся гравий. Мотоцикл начал подниматься по склону.
В шифровалке. Она не могла себе этого представить. - С-слушаюсь, сэр.
Он не предложил вам больницы поприличнее. - На этой его чертовой тарантайке. Нет уж, увольте. - Что же случилось утром. - Я все рассказал лейтенанту.
Milan Vaishnav and his guests breaks down the latest developments in Indian politics.
В его ушах звучали слова Стратмора: Не звони, пока не добудешь кольцо. Внезапно он почувствовал страшный упадок сил. Если Меган продала кольцо и улетела, нет никакой возможности узнать, где оно. Беккер закрыл глаза и попытался сосредоточиться.
Из размышлений об этом кошмаре его вывела Соши, подбежавшая к подиуму со свежей распечаткой. - Я кое-что нашла, сэр! - возбужденно сказала. - Висячие строки в источнике.
Джабба! - Соши задыхалась. - Червь… я знаю, на что он запрограммирован! - Она сунула распечатку Джаббе. - Я поняла это, сделав пробу системных функций. Мы выделили отдаваемые им команды - смотрите. Смотрите, на что он нацелен.
Но это было не совсем. Сьюзан переживала из-за того, что ей пришлось солгать любимому человеку, но у нее не было другого выхода.
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