India 100–1000

The Indian subcontinent (shown in relation to South East Asia and China on the map inset) experienced a full flowering of art and culture during its Classical period (ca. 400–1100). This classical period did not appear overnight, but rather it came to maturity during the Gupta dynasty (ca. 325–550), whose expansion is depicted on this map. The Gupta empire included territory in what is now Pakistan, Nepal, and Bangladesh; the Guptas were active supporters of the arts and they had a profound effect on culture, art, and religion. At its height the Gupta empire stretched from Dvaraka, on the coast of the Arabian Sea (1d) eastward across the Bay of Bengal (1b).