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He reigned for about 40 years. He was the
first king to educate his men and lead them to the path of truth. He was the
only military man who gave up warfare. Ashok was the grandson of Chandra Gupta
who founded the Maurya Empire. The name of his father was Bindusar. Ashok was
brought up in his father’s palace in Patliputra, the capital of Magadh. In the
name of education he was taught things that would supply learning, culture and
wealth. It is said that as a child he was very furious. But after he had sat on
the throne, there was a complete change in his nature. About the year 262 B.C.
he decided to make an attack on the kingdom
of Kalinga now called
Orissa. He fought a bloody war. After a great slaughter of men, women and
children, he conquered Kalinga and added it to his empire.
But he had not the cruel
heart of a conqueror. The sight of terrible ruin filled his mind with horror.
He made up his mind to establish an empire on love, order and peace. Buddhism
made him a lover of all forms of life. He built hospitals for men and animals.
He banned animal sacrifice in his great empire. He sent missionaries to Tibet and China,
Burma, Ceylon and Deccan
to spread Buddhism. He began to practice the Law of Piety.
Ashok was a man of character
this is a clear from the fact that he kept peace in war-loving age. He adopted
Buddhism, As a King he was just and kind. He spent his life in the service of
The European and African
kings sought his friendship. He was one of the greatest emperors of India and the
best king of the world.