Its very interesting to read the ancient Indian vedas and their treatise on war strategy and weapons that existed back in the days. For a nation that was primarily focused on defence, we sure did have a fairly adept arsenal to adequately be equipped. Why then did we not think of conquest? Perhaps because we have always been blessed by nature, with all varieties of fruit and plants available and a whole range of climatic conditions, not to mention a huge landmass.
Read THIS blog which has been well compiled and is worth a read for those who are keen on researching ancient Indian weapons and tech. The initial few paragraphs give an insight into the caste and military system of ancient India while the rest tries to explain the weapons from the vedas.
Here are a few pictures and excerpts from it ->
‘Bow and Arrow:
In the words of H. H. Wilson: “the Hindus cultivated archery most assiduously and were very Parthians in the use of the bow on horse-back.” One feature of this weapon was that it could be handled by all the four classes of warriors.
and the nine following are minor weapons of this class. Probably this was a heavy club which had a broad and bent tail end, measuring one cubit in length. It was to be used with the left foot of the warrior placed in front. The various uses of this weapon were cutting, hitting, striking and breaking. It was like a kunta but with a big blade. It was used by the Asuras in their fight with Kartavirya Arjuna.
is a hand gun or musket rightly piercing the mark. It was straight in form and hollow inside. It discharged darts if ignited. As has been already said, Sukracarya speaks of two kinds of nalika, one big and the other small. The small one, with a little hole at the end, measured sixty angulas (ie. distance between the thumb and the little finger) dotted with several spots at the muzzle end. Through the touch hole or at its breach which contained wood, fire was conveyed to the charge. It was generally used by foot-soldiers. But the big gun had no wood at the breach and was so heavy that it had to be conveyed in carts. The balls were made of iron, lead or other material. Kamandaka uses the word nalika in the sense of firing gun as a signal for the unwary king. Again in the Naisadha, a work of the medieval period, Damayanti is compared to the two bows of the god of love and goddess of love, and her two nostrils to the two guns capable of throwing balls.
Thus there is clear evidence of the existence and use of firing guns in India in very early times.’