List of Indian Inventions and Discoveries

  • View

  • Download

Embed Size (px)

Text of List of Indian Inventions and Discoveries

List of Indian inventions and discoveries


List of Indian inventions and discoveriesThis list of Indian inventions and discoveries details the inventions, scientific discoveries and contributions of India, including both the ancient and medieval nations in the subcontinent historically referred to as India and the modern Indian state. It draws from the whole cultural and technological history of India, during which architecture, astronomy, cartography, metallurgy, logic, mathematics, metrology and mineralogy were among the branches of study pursued by its scholars. During recent times science and technology in the Republic of India has also focused on automobile engineering, information technology, communications as well as space, polar, and nuclear sciences.

Inventions Button, ornamental: Buttonsmade from seashellwere used in the Indus Valley Civilization for ornamental purposes by 2000 BCE.[1] Some buttons were carved into geometric shapes and had holes pieced into them so that they could attached to clothing by using a thread.[1] Ian McNeil (1990) holds that: "The button, in fact, was originally used more as an ornament than as a fastening, the earliest known being found at Mohenjo-daro in the Indus Valley. It is made of a curved shell and about 5000 years old."[2] Calico: Calico had originated in the subcontinent by the 11th century and found mention in Indian literature by the 12th when writer Hemacandra mentioned calico fabric prints done in a lotus design.[3] The Indian textile merchants traded in calico with the Africans by the 15th century and calico fabrics from Gujarat appeared in Egypt.[3] Trade with Europe followed from the 17th century onwards.[3] Within India, calico originated in Calicut.[3] Carding, devices for: Historian of science Joseph Needham ascribes the invention of bow-instruments used in textile technology to India.[4] The earliest evidence for using bow-instruments for carding comes from India (2nd century CE).[4] These carding devices, called kaman and dhunaki would loosen the texture of the fiber by the means of a vibrating string.[4] Chaturanga and Shatranj: The precursors of chess originated in India during the Gupta dynasty (c. 280 - 550 CE).[5] [6] [7] [8] Both the Persians and Arabs ascribe the origins of the game of Chess to the Indians.[7] [9] [10] The words for "chess" in Old Persian and Arabic are chatrang and shatranj respectively terms derived from caturaga in Sanskrit,[11] [12] which literally means an army of four divisions or four corps.[13] [14] Chess spread throughout the world and many variants of the game soon began taking shape.[15] This game was introduced to the Near East from India and became a Map showing origin and diffusion of chess from part of the princely or courtly education of Persian nobility.[13] India to Asia, Africa, and Europe, and the Buddhist pilgrims, Silk Road traders and others carried it to the Far changes in the native names of the game in East where it was transformed and assimilated into a game often corresponding places and time. played on the intersection of the lines of the board rather than within the squares.[15] Chaturanga reached Europe through Persia, the Byzantine empire and the expanding Arabian empire.[14] [16] Muslims carried Shatranj to North Africa, Sicily, and Spain by the 10th century where it took its final modern form of chess.[15] Chintz: The origin of Chintz is from the printed all cotton fabric of calico in India.[3] The origin of the word chintz itself is from the Hindi language word (chitr), which means a spot.[3] [17] Coherer, iron and mercury: In 1899, the Bengali physicist Jagdish Chandra Bose announced the development of an "iron-mercury-iron coherer with telephone detector" in a paper presented at the Royal Society, London.[18] He also later received U.S. Patent 755840 [19], "Detector for electrical disturbances" (1904), for a specific

List of Indian inventions and discoveries electromagnetic receiver. Cotton gin, single-roller: The Ajanta caves of India yield evidence of a single roller cotton gin in use by the 5th century.[20] This cotton gin was used in India until innovations were made in form of foot powered gins.[21] The cotton gin was invented in India as a mechanical device known as charkhi, more technically the "wooden-worm-worked roller". This mechanical device was, in some parts of India, driven by water power.[4] Crescograph: The crescograph, a device for measuring growth in plants, was invented in the early 20th century by the Bengali scientist Jagdish Chandra Bose.[22] [23] Crucible steel: Perhaps as early as 300 BCEalthough certainly by 200 CEhigh quality steel was being produced in southern India also by what Europeans would later call the crucible technique.[24] In this system, high-purity wrought iron, charcoal, and glass were mixed in a crucible and heated until the iron melted and absorbed the carbon.[24] The first crucible steel was the wootz steel that originated in India before the beginning of the common era.[25] Archaeological evidence suggests that this manufacturing process was already in existence in South India well before the Christian era.[26] [27] Dock (maritime): The world's first dock at Lothal (2400 BCE) was located away from the main current to avoid deposition of silt.[28] Modern oceanographers have observed that the Harappans must have possessed great knowledge relating to tides in order to build such a dock on the ever-shifting course of the Sabarmati, as well as exemplary hydrography and maritime engineering.[28] This was the earliest known dock found in the world, equipped to berth and service ships.[28] It is speculated that Lothal engineers studied tidal movements, and their effects on brick-built structures, since the walls are of kiln-burnt bricks.[29] This knowledge also enabled them to select Lothal's location in the first place, as the Gulf of Khambhat has the highest tidal amplitude and ships can be sluiced through flow tides in the river estuary.[29] The engineers built a trapezoidal structure, with north-south arms of average 21.8metres (71.5ft), and east-west arms of 37metres (121ft).[29] Incense clock: Although popularly associated with China the incense clock is believed to have originated in India, at least in its fundamental form if not function.[30] [31] Early incense clocks found in China between the 6th and 8th century CEthe period it appeared in China all seem to have Devangar carvings on them instead of Chinese seal characters.[30] [31] Incense itself was introduced to China from India in the early centuries CE, along with the spread of Buddhism by travelling monks.[32] [33] [34] Edward Schafer asserts that incense clocks Cotton being dyed manually in contemporary India. were probably an Indian invention, transmitted to China, which explains the Devangar inscriptions on early incense clocks found in China.[30] Silvio Bedini on the other hand asserts that incense clocks were derived in part from incense seals mentioned in Tantric Buddhist scriptures, which first came to light in China after those scriptures from India were translated into Chinese, but holds that the time-telling function of the seal was incorporated by the Chinese.[31] India ink, carbonaceous pigment for: The source of the carbon pigment used in India ink was India.[35] [36] In India, the carbon black from which India ink is produced is obtained by burning bones, tar, pitch, and other substances.[36] [37] Ink itself has been used in India since at least the 4th century BCE.[38] Masi, an early ink in India was an admixture of several chemical components.[38] Indian documents written in Kharosthi with ink have been unearthed in Xinjiang.[39] The practice of writing with ink and a sharp pointed needle was common in ancient South India.[40] Several Jain sutras in India were compiled in ink.[41] Indian clubs: The Indian clubwhich appeared in Europe during the 18th centurywas used long by India's native soldiery before its introduction to Europe.[42] During the British Raj the British officers in India performed


List of Indian inventions and discoveries calisthenic exercises with clubs to keep in for physical conditioning.[42] From Britain the use of club swinging spread to the rest of the world.[42] Kabaddi: The game of kabaddi originated in India during prehistory.[43] Suggestions on how it evolved into the modern form range from wrestling exercises, military drills, and collective self defense but most authorities agree that the game existed in some form or the other in India during the period between 1500-400 BCE.[43] Ludo: Pachisi originated in India by the 6th century.[44] The earliest evidence of this game in India is the depiction of boards on the caves of Ajanta.[44] This game was played by the Mughal emperors of India; a notable example being that of Akbar, who played living Pachisi using girls from his harem.[44] [45] A variant of this game, called Ludo, made its way to England during the British Raj.[44] Muslin: The fabric was named after the city where Europeans first encountered it, Mosul, in what is now Iraq, but the fabric actually originated from Dhaka in what is now Bangladesh.[46] [47] In the 9th century, an Arab merchant named Sulaiman makes note of the material's origin in Bengal (known as Ruhml in Arabic).[47] Palampore: (Hindi language) of Indian origin[3] was imported to the western worldnotable England and Colonial americafrom India.[3] [3] In 17th century England these hand painted cotton fabrics influenced native crewel work design.[3] Shipping vessels from India also took palampore to colonial America, where it was used in quilting.[3] Playing cards: Playing cards are believed to have been invented in Ancient India.[48] [49] [50] [51]


The Great Stupa at Sanchi (4th-1st century BCE).

The dome shaped stupa was used in India as a Prayer flags: The Buddhist stras, wri