Introduction :

India with its recorded history of more than 5000 years is still there for the world to see and get inspired. She is surviving from the series of invasions and exploitations which attacked not only her land but also her mind and soul. Studying India, her history, culture and civilization, her arts and her struggles is not just interesting but inevitable for the humanity.

She is the Jagatguru, teacher for humanity. Swami Vivekananda saw her sitting on her ancient throne, more glorious than ever before. Following is brief formal introduction of Indology. (

Indology or South Asian studies is the academic study of the history and cultures, languages, and literature of India and as such is a subset of Asian studies. The term Indology or (in German) Indologie is often associated with German scholarship, and is used more commonly in departmental titles in German and continental European universities than in the anglophone academy. In the Netherlands the term Indologie was used to designate the study of Indonesian history and culture in preparation for colonial service in the Dutch East Indies.

Specifically, Indology includes the study of Sanskrit literature and Hinduism along with the other Indian religions, Jainism, Buddhism and Pali literature, and Sikhism. Dravidology is the separate branch dedicated to the Dravidian languages of South India.

Some scholars distinguish Classical Indology from Modern Indology, the former more focussed on Sanskrit and other ancient language sources, the latter on contemporary India, its politics and sociology.



The beginnings of the study of India by travellers from outside the subcontinent date back at least to Megasthenes (ca. 350–290 BC), a Greek ambassador of the Seleucids to the court of Chandragupta (ruled 322-298 BC), founder of the Mauryan Empire. Based on his life in India Megasthenes composed a four-volume Indica, fragments of which still exist, and which influenced the classical geographers Arrian, Diodor and Strabo. Megasthenes reported that the caste system dominated an essentially illiterate India.

Abu Rayhan al-Biruni (973–1048) in Tarikh Al-Hind (Researches on India) recorded the political and military history of India and covered India's cultural, scientific, social and religious history in detail. He studied the anthropology of India, engaging in extensive participant observation with various Indian groups, learning their languages and studying their primary texts, and presenting his findings with objectivity and neutrality using cross-cultural comparisons.

However, while such early observational narratives may constitute a form of pre-modern ethnography, they are not generally considered to be Indology as such.


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