The Lineage and Family of Asoka
KING Bimbisara reigned at Rajagriha. His son was Ajatasatru, whose son was Udayibhadra, whose son was Munda, whose son was Kakavarnin, whose son was Sahalin, whose son was Tulakuchi, whose son was Mahamandala, whose son was Prasenajit, whose son was Nanda, whose son was Bindusara.
King Bindusara reigned at Pataliputra, and had a son named Susima.
A certain Brahman of Champa had a lovely daughter. A prophecy declared that she was destined to be the mother of two sons, of whom one would become universal monarch, and the other would attain the goal of the life of a recluse. The Brahman, seeking the fulfillment of the prophecy, succeeded in introducing his daughter into the palace, but the jealousy of the queens
Debarred her from the royal embraces, and assigned to her the menial duties of a barber. After some time the girl managed to explain to the king that she was no barber but the daughter of a Brahman. When the king understood that she belonged to a caste with a member of which he could honourably consort, he at once took her into favour and made her chief queen. In due course, the Brahman’s daughter, whose name was Subhadrangi, bore to the king two sons, the elder named Asoka, and the younger named Vigatasoka.
The ascetic Pingala Vatsajiva, when consulted by King Bindusara concerning the destiny of the two boys, feared to tell his sovereign the truth, because Asoka was rough-looking and displeasing in the sight of his father; but he frankly told Queen Subhadrangi that her son Asoka was destined for the throne.
It came to pass that King Bindusara desired to besiege Taxila, which was in rebellion. The king ordered his despised son Asoka to undertake the siege, and yet would not supply him with chariots or the needful munitions of war. Ill-supplied as he was, the prince obediently started to carry out the king’s orders, whereupon the earth opened, and from her bosom supplied all his wants. When Asoka with his army approached Taxila, the citizens came forth to meet him, protesting that their quarrel was only with oppressive ministers, not with the king or the king’s son. Taxila and the kingdom of the Svasas made their submission to the prince, who in due course returned to the capital.
It came to pass that one day Prince Susima, the king’s eldest son, was coming into the palace from the garden when he playfully threw his glove at the head of the prime-minister Khallataka. The minister was deeply offended, and from that day engaged in a conspiracy with five hundred privy councillors to exclude Susima, and to place Asoka on the throne.
The people of Taxila again revolted, and Prince Susima, who was deputed to reduce them to obedience, failed in his task. King Bindusara, who was then old and ill, desired to send Asoka to Taxila, and to recall Susima, that he might take up the succession.
The ministers, however, contrived to exclude the elder prince, and to secure the throne for Asoka, on whose head the gods themselves placed the crown, at the moment when his father expired. Susima marched against Pataliputra, to assert his rights and expel the usurper; but Asoka and his minister Radhagupta obtained the services of naked giants, who successfully guarded the gates, and by stratagem Susima was inveigled, so that he fell into a ditch full of burning fuel, and there miserably perished.
The Tyranny and Conversion of Asoka
One day, when five hundred of his ministers ventured to resist the royal will, Asoka, transported with rage, drew his sword, and with his own hand cut off the heads of all the offenders.
Another day, the women of the palace, whom Asoka’s rough features failed to please, mocked him by breaking off the leaves of an asoka tree in the garden. The king, when he heard of the incident, caused five hundred women to be burnt alive.
The ministers, horrified at these acts of cruelty, entreated the king not to defile his royal hands with blood, but to appoint an executioner to carry out sentences.
The king accepted this advice, and a man named Chandagirika a wretch of unexampled cruelty, who loved to torture animals, and had slain his father and mother was sought out and appointed Chief Executioner. For his use the king caused to be built a prison, which had a most attractive exterior, so that men might be tempted to enter it, and thus suffer all the tortures of hell which awaited them within; for the king had commanded that no man who entered this prison- should leave it alive.
One day, a holy ascetic named Balapandita (Samudra in the metrical version) unwittingly entered the gate, and was instantly seized by the jailer. The holy man, though given seven days’ respite, was at the end of the term of grace ruthlessly cast into a seething cauldron of filth, beneath which a great fire was kindled. The cruel jailer, looking in, beheld the saint, seated on a lotus, and unscathed by fire. The miracle having been reported to the palace, the king himself came to see it, and being converted by the sight and the preaching of the holy man, embraced the true religion and forsook the paths of wickedness. The prison was demolished, and the jailer was burnt alive.
The above legend from the Asokavadana, which is given with further details by Hiuen Tsang (Beal, ii. 86), places the ‘prison’ or ‘hell’ at Pataliputra the capital.
Another form of the legend, which is merely referred to by Hiuen Tsang without comment, places the ‘hell’ at Ujjain in Malwa (Beal, ii. 271).
The conversion of the king, according to Hiuen Tsang, was due to the great saint Upagupta, whom he met after the destruction of the ‘ hell.’ With the aid of Upagupta, King Asoka summoned the genii and commanded them to build stupas throughout the land for the reception of the relics of Buddha’s body, which had been taken out of the eight stupas where they had originally been enshrined after the cremation of the Sakya sage. At the moment of a solar eclipse the genii, in obedience to the commands of the king and the saint, simultaneously deposited the relics in all the stupas.
The Avadana story is that when King Asoka desired to distribute the sacred relics of the body of Buddha among the eighty-four thousand stupas erected by himself, he opened the Stupa of the Urn, wherein King Ajatasatru had enshrined the cremation relics collected from seven of the eight original stupas. The eighth, that at Ramagrama, was defended by the guardian Nagas, who would not allow it to be opened. The relics thus withdrawn from the Stupa of the Urn were distributed among eighty-four thousand stupas, ‘resplendent as the autumn clouds,’ which were erected in a single day by the descendant of the Mauryas. ‘The worshipful, the fortunate Maurya caused the erection of all these stupas for the benefit of created beings; formerly he was called on earth Asoka the Wicked, but this good work has earned for him the name of Asoka the Pious.’
The metrical Avadana is still more extravagant than the prose form of the tale, and alleges that 3,510 millions of stupas were erected at the request of the people of Taxila, and that ten millions were erected by the Yakshas on the shores of the sea.
The Pilgrimage of Asoka
Having erected the eighty-four thousand stupas, King Asoka expressed a desire to visit the holy places of his religion. By the advice of his counsellors he sent for the saint Upagupta, son of Gupta the perfumer. Upagupta had been in accordance with prophecy born a century after the death of Buddha, and, when summoned by the king, was dwelling on Mount Urumunda in the Natabhatika forest near Mathura.
The saint accepted the royal invitation, and, accompanied by eighteen thousand holy men, travelled in state by boat down the Jumna and Ganges to Pataliputra, where he was received with the utmost reverence and honour.
The king said: ‘I desire to visit all the places where the Venerable Buddha stayed, to do honour unto them, and to mark each with an enduring memorial for the instruction of the most remote posterity.’ The saint approved of the project, and undertook to act as guide. Escorted by a mighty army the monarch visited all the holy places in order.
The first place visited was the Lumbini Garden. Here Upagupta said: ‘In this spot, great king, the Venerable One was born’; and added: ‘Here is the first monument consecrated in honour of the Buddha, the sight of whom is excellent. Here, the moment after his birth, the recluse took seven steps upon the ground.’
The king bestowed a hundred thousand gold pieces on the people of the place, and built g a stupa. He then passed on to Kapilavastu.
The royal pilgrim next visited the Bodhi-tree at Bodh Gaya, and there also gave a largess of a hundred thousand gold pieces, and built a chaitya. Rishipatana (Sarnath) near Benares, where Gautama had ‘turned the wheel of the law,’ and Kusinagara, where the Teacher had passed away, were also visited with similar observances. At Sravasti the pilgrims did reverence to the Jetavana monastery, where Gautama had so long dwelt and taught, and to the stupas of his disciples, Sariputra, Maudgalayana, and Maha Kasyapa. But when the king visited the stupa of Vakkula, he gave only one copper coin, inasmuch as Vakkula had met with few obstacles in the path of holiness, and had done little good to his fellow creatures. At the stupa of Ananda, the faithful attendant of Gautama, the royal gift amounted to six million gold pieces.
The Story of Vitasoka
Vitasoka (Vigatasoka), the king’s brother, was an adherent of the Tirthyas, who reproached the Buddhist monks as being men who loved pleasure and feared pain. Asoka’s efforts to convert his brother were met by the retort that the king was merely a tool in the hands of the monks. The king therefore resolved to effect his brother’s conversion by stratagem.
At his instigation the ministers tricked Vitasoka into the assumption of the insignia of royalty. The king when informed of what had happened feigned great anger, and threatened his brother with instant death. Ultimately he was persuaded to grant the offender seven days’ respite, and to permit him to exercise sovereign power during those seven days. During this period the fear of death so wrought upon the mind of Vitasoka that he embraced the doctrine of Buddha, in which he was instructed by the holy Sthavira Yasas. With difficulty the king was persuaded by the Sthavira Yasas to grant to his brother permission to become a monk. In order to initiate the novice gradually into the habits of the life of a mendicant friar, Asoka prepared a hermitage for him within the palace grounds. From this hermitage Vitasoka withdrew, first to the Kukkutarama monastery, and afterwards to Videha (Tirhut), where he attained to the rank of a saint (arahat). When Vitasoka, clad in rags, returned to the palace, he was received with great honour, and was induced to exhibit his supernatural powers. He then again withdrew to a distant retreat beyond the frontier, where he fell ill. Asoka sent him medicine, and he recovered.
In those days it happened that a devoted adherent of the Brahman ascetics threw down and broke a statue of Buddha at Pundra Vardhana in Bengal. As a penalty for the sacrilege eighteen thousand inhabitants of that city were massacred in one day by order of Asoka. Some time after another fanatic at Pataliputra similarly overthrew a statue of Buddha. The persons concerned, with all their relatives and friends, were burned alive, and the king placed the price of a dinara on the head of every Brahmanical ascetic.
Now, when the proclamation was published Vitasoka, clad in his beggar’s garb, happened to be lodging for the night in the hut of a cowherd. The good wife, seeing the unkempt and dishevelled appearance of her guest, was convinced that he must be one of the proclaimed ascetics, and persuaded her husband to slay him in order to earn the reward. The cowherd carried his victim’s head to the king, who was horrified at the sight, and was persuaded by his ministers to revoke the proclamation. Not only did he revoke the cruel proclamation, but he gave the world peace by ordaining that henceforth no one should be put to death.
In Fa-hien’s version of the legend the brother of the king is anonymous. The pilgrim tells us that the younger brother of King Asoka lived the life of a recluse on the Vulture’s Peak hill near Rajagriha, where he had attained to the rank of a saint (arhat). The king invited the recluse to the palace, but the invitation was declined. The king then promised that if his brother would accept the invitation, he would make a hill for him inside the city. ‘Then the king, providing all sorts of meat and drink, invited the genii, and addressed them thus: “I beg you to accept my invitation for tomorrow; but as there are no seats, I must request you each to bring his own.” On the morrow the genii guests came, each one bringing with him a huge stone, four or five paces square. After the feast, he deputed the genii to pile up their seats, and make a great stone mountain ; and at the base of the mountain with five massive square stones to make a rock chamber, in length about 35 feet, and in breadth 22 feet, and in height 71 feet or so.’
The same story is told by Hiuen Tsang in order to explain the origin of the stone dwelling which was still to be seen at Pataliputra in the seventh century A. D.
The Story of Mahendra, and the conversion of Ceylon
King Asoka early in his reign had a half-brother, the son of his mother, who was younger than the king, and belonged to a noble family. The young man was extravagant, wasteful, and cruel in disposition. In his dress also he aped the royal costume.
The indignation of the people became so great that the ministers ventured to remonstrate with the king, and to say: ‘Your majesty’s brother in his pride assumes a dignity beyond his due. When the government is impartial, the subjects are contented; when the subjects are content, the sovereign is at peace. We desire that you should preserve the principles of government handed down to us by our fathers, and that you should deliver to justice the men who seek to change those principles.’
Then King Asoka, weeping, addressed his brother and said: ‘I have inherited from my ancestors the duty of protecting my people; how is it that you, my own brother, have forgotten my affection and kindness? It is impossible for me at the very beginning of my reign to disregard the laws. If I punish you, I dread the resentment of my ancestors; if I pass over your transgressions, I dread the ill opinion of my people.’
The prince, bowing his head, admitted his error, and begged for nothing more than a respite of seven days. The king granted this request, and threw his brother into a dark dungeon, though he provided him with exquisite food and all other luxuries. At the end of the first day the guard cried out to the prisoner: ‘One day has gone; six days are left.’ By the time the sixth day had expired, the prisoner’s repentance and discipline were complete. He attained at once to the rank of a saint (arahat), and feeling conscious of miraculous powers, ascended into the air.
Asoka went in person to the dungeon, and told his brother that having now, contrary to expectation, attained the highest degree of holiness he might return to his place. Mahendra replied that he had lost all taste for the pleasures of the world, and desired to live in solitude. Asoka consented, but pointed out that it was unnecessary for the prince to retire to the mountains, as a hermitage could be constructed at the capital. The king then caused the genii to build a stone house, as already related.
Mahendra, after his conversion, journeyed to the south of India, and built a monastery in the delta of the Kaveri (Cauvery), of which the ruins were still visible nine hundred years later.
He is also related to have made, use of his supernatural powers to pass through the air to Ceylon, in which island he spread the knowledge of the true law, and widely diffused the doctrine bequeathed to his disciples by the Master. From the time of Mahendra, the people of Ceylon, who had been addicted to a corrupt form of religion, forsook their ancient errors and heartily accepted the truth. The conversion of Ceylon, according to Hiuen Tsang, took place one hundred years after the death of Buddha.
The Story of Kunala
In the seventh century A. D. pilgrims were shown a stupa at Taxila, which was said to have been built by Asoka to mark the spot where the eyes of his beloved son Kunala were torn out. The story of Kunala is to the following effect.
After the death of his faithful consort Asandhimitra, King Asoka, late in life, married Tishyarakshita, a dissolute and unprincipled young woman. She cast amorous glances on her stepson Kunala, her worthy predecessor’s son, who was famous for the beauty of his eyes. The virtuous prince rejected with horror the advances made by his stepmother, who then became filled with ‘the spite of contemned beauty,’ and changed her hot love into bitter hate. In pursuance of a deep-laid scheme for the destruction of him who by his virtue had put her vice to shame, the queen with honied words persuaded the king to depute Kunala to the government of distant Taxila.
The prince obediently accepted the honourable commission, and when departing was warned by his father to verify orders received, which, if genuine, would be sealed with an impression of the king’s teeth. The queen bided her time, with ever-growing hatred. After the lapse of some months she wrote a dispatch, addressed to the viceroy’s ministers at Taxila, directing them immediately on receipt of the orders to put out the eyes of the viceroy, Prince Kunala, to lead him and his wife into the mountains, and to there leave them to perish.
She sealed the dispatch with royal red wax, and, when the king was asleep, furtively stamped the wax with the impression of his teeth, and sent off the orders with all speed to Taxila. The ministers who received the orders knew not what to do. The prince, noticing their confusion, compelled them to explain. The ministers wished to compromise by detaining the prince in custody, pending a reference to the capital. But the prince would not permit of any delay, and said: ‘My father, if he has ordered my death, must be obeyed; and the seal of his teeth is a sure sign of the correctness of the orders. No mistake is possible.’ He then commanded an outcaste wretch to pluck out his eyes. The order was obeyed, and the prince, accompanied by his faithful wife, wandered forth in sightless misery to beg his bread.
In the course of their weary wanderings they arrived at Pataliputra. ‘Alas,’ cried the blind man, ‘what pain I suffer from cold and hunger. I was a prince; I am a beggar. Would that I could make myself known, and get redress for the false accusations brought against me.’ He managed to penetrate into an inner court of the palace, where he lifted up his voice and wept, and, to the sound of a lute, sang a song full of sadness.
The king in an upper chamber heard the strains, and thinking that he recognized the voice and touch as those of his son, sent for the minstrel. The king, when he beheld his sightless son, was overwhelmed with grief, and inquired by whose contrivance all this misery had come about. The prince humbly replied: ‘In truth, for lack of filial piety I have thus been punished by Heaven. On such and such a day suddenly came a loving order, and I, having no means of excusing myself, dared not shrink from the punishment.’
The king, knowing in his heart that Queen Tishyarakshita was guilty of the crime, without further inquiry caused her to be burnt alive, and visited with condign punishment every person, high or low, who had any share in the outrage. The officials were some dismissed, some banished, some executed. The common people were, according to one account, massacred, and, according to another, transported across the Himalayas to the deserts of Khotan.
In those days a great saint named Ghosha dwelt in the monastery by the holy tree of Mahabodhi. To him the king brought Kunala, and prayed that his son might receive his sight. The saint commanded that on the morrow a great congregation should assemble to hear his preaching of the Law, and that each person should bring a vessel to receive his tears. A vast multitude of men and women assembled, and there was not one of those who heard the sermon but was moved to tears, which fell into the vessels provided.
The saint collected the tears in a golden vase, and said these words: ‘The doctrine which I have expounded is the most mysterious of Buddha’s teaching; if that exposition is not true, if there is error in what I have said, then let things remain as they are; but, if what I have said is true and free from error, let this man, after washing his eyes with these tears, receive his sight.’
Whereupon Kunala washed in the tears and received his sight.
A Story of Tishyarakshita
Tishyarakshita, queen of King Asoka, in pursuance of her incestuous passion for her stepson, Prince Kunala, who repulsed her advances, resolved to avenge herself, and, in order to accomplish her purpose, took advantage of the king’s sufferings from a dangerous and apparently incurable disease, to acquire complete control over his mind, and for some days she was granted unrestrained use of the sovereign power.
Asoka, believing his malady to be incurable, gave the order: ‘Send for Kunala; I wish to place him on the throne. What use is life to me?’ Tishyarakshita hearing these words, thought to herself: ‘If Kunala ascends the throne, I am lost.’ Accordingly she said to King Asoka: ‘I undertake to restore you to health, but a necessary condition is that you forbid all physicians to have access to the palace.’ The king complied with her request, and she enjoined everybody to bring to her any person, man or woman, who might be suffering from the same malady as the king.
Now it happened that a man of the shepherd caste was suffering from the same malady. His wife explained his case to a physician, who promised to prescribe a suitable remedy after examining the patient. The man then consulted the physician, who brought him to Queen Tishyarakshita. She had him conveyed to a secret place, where he was put to death. When his body was opened she perceived in his stomach a huge worm, which had deranged the bodily functions. She applied pounded pepper and ginger without effect, but when the worm was touched with an onion, he died immediately, and passed out of the intestines. The queen then begged the king to eat an onion and so recover his health. The king replied: ‘Queen, I am a Kshatriya; how can I eat an onion?’
‘My lord,’ answered the queen, ‘you should swallow it merely as physician’s order to save your life.’ The king then ate the onion, and the worm died, passing out of the intestines.
The Dotage of King Asoka
The king resolved to give a thousand millions of gold pieces to the Master’s service, and when far advanced in years had actually given nine hundred and sixty millions. In the hope that the vow would be completed before he died he daily sent great treasures of silver and gold to the Kukkutarama monastery at the capital. In those days Sampadi, the son of Kunala, was heir-apparent. To him the ministers pointed out that the king was ruining himself by his extravagance, and would, if permitted to continue it, be unable to resist the attacks of other monarchs or to protect the kingdom.
The prince, therefore, forbade the treasurer to comply with the king’s demands. Asoka, unable to obtain supplies from the treasury, began to give away the plate which furnished the royal table, first the gold, next the silver, and finally the iron. When all the metallic ware had been exhausted, the ministers furnished the king’s table with earthenware. Then Asoka demanded of them, ‘Who is king of this country?’ The ministers did obeisance and respectfully replied: ‘Your majesty is king.’ Asoka burst into tears, and cried: ‘Why do you say from kindness what is not true? I am fallen from my royal state. Save this half-apple there is nought of which I can dispose as sovereign.’ Then the king sent the half-apple to the Kukkutarama monastery, to be divided among the monks, who should be addressed in this wise: ‘Behold, this is my last gift; to this pass have come the riches of the emperor of India. My royalty and my power have departed; deprived of health, of physic, and of physicians, to me no support is left save that of the Assembly of the saints. Eat this fruit, which is offered with the intent that the whole Assembly may partake of it, my last gift.’
Once more King Asoka asked his minister Radhagupta: ‘Who is sovereign of this country?’ The minister did obeisance and respectfully replied: ‘Sire, your majesty is sovereign of this country.’
King Asoka, recovering his composure, responded in verse, and said:
This earth, encinctured by its sapphire zone,
This earth, bedecked with gleaming jewels rare,
This earth, of hills the everlasting throne,
This earth, of all creation mother fair,
I give to the Assembly.
The blessing which attends such gift be mine;
Not Indra’s halls nor Brahma’s courts I crave,
Nor yet the splendours which round monarchs shine,
And pass away, like rushing Ganga’s wave,
Abiding not a moment.
With faith unchangeable, which nought can shake,
This gift of Earth’s immeasurable sphere
I to the Saints’ Assembly freely make ;
And self-control I crave, of boons most dear,
A good which changeth never.
According to Fa-hien (chapter xxvii), this gift of the empire was recorded in an inscription on a stone pillar to the south of Pataliputra. The site of the pillar has not been identified with certainty. The speech of Asoka in prose is as follows:
‘This earth, which ocean enwraps in a glorious garment of sapphire, this earth whereof the face is adorned with mines of diverse jewels, this earth, which supports all creatures and Mount Madara, I give to the Assembly.
‘As the reward of this good deed I desire not to dwell in the palace of Indra, nor yet in that of Brahma, nor do I in any wise desire the felicity of kingship, which, quicker even than running water, passes away and is gone.
‘The reward which I crave for the perfect faith whereby I make this gift is that self-control which the saints honour, and which is a good exempt from change.’
King Asoka, having thus spoken, sealed the deed of gift, and presently fulfilled the law of mortality.
The forty millions of gold pieces which yet remained to complete King Asoka’s vow for the gift of a thousand millions, were expended by the ministers in the redemption of the earth, and Sampadi was placed upon the vacant throne. He was succeeded by his son Vrihaspati, who was succeeded in order by Vrishasena, Pushyadharma, and Pushpamitra (Pusyamitra).
Pusyamitra and the End of the Mauryan Line
Sampadin’s son was Brihaspati who in turn, had a son named Vrsasena, and Vrsasena had a son named Pusyadharman, and Pusyadharman begot Pusyamitra.
One day, the latter asked his ministers: “What can I do to make my name renowned forever?”
“In your majesty’s lineage,” they answered, “there was a king named Asoka who built eighty-four thousand dharmarajikas. His fame will endure as long as the Buddhist religion survives. Let your majesty also build eighty-four thousand dharmarajikas, and so be famous like him.”
But the king said: “King Asoka was great and distinguished; is there not some other means?”
Now Pusyamitra had a Brahmin priest who was a mean and faithless man. He declared: “Your majesty, there are two ways to make a name endure forever. King Asoka built eighty-four thousand dharmarajikas and is thereby famous. If you, on the other hand, were to destroy those dharmarajikas, your name would endure even longer.”
Then King Pusyamitra equipped a fourfold army, and intending to destroy the Buddhist religion, he went to Kukkutarama; but at the gate, he heard a lion’s roar, and frightened, he retreated to Pataliputra. A second time, and then again a third time, the same thing happened. Finally, he summoned the community and said to the monks: “I am going to destroy the religion of the Blessed One – would you rather keep the stupas or the sangharama?” The monks decided to keep the stupas. Pusyamitra therefore destroyed the sangharama, killed the monks there, and departed.
After some time, he arrived in Sakala, and proclaimed that he would give a hundred dinara reward to whomever brought him the head of a Buddhist monk. Now there was a certain arhat there who lived in a dharmarajika, and he started creating heads by means of his supernatural powers and giving them to the king. When the king learnt what was happening, he resolved to have the arhat put to death. The saint then entered the trance of cessation but did not cross over to the other side. The king [unable to kill him] finally gave up and went to Kosthaka.
There the yaksa Damstranivasin reasoned: “[If Pusyamitra is not killed] the Buddhist religion will die out; but I maintain the precepts – it is not possible for me to harm anyone whomsoever!” Now another yaksa, Krmisa was seeking the hand of Damstranivasin’s daughter in marriage, but Damstranivasin had refused him saying, “you are an evil-doer!” Now, however, he agreed to give Krmisa his daughter, on the condition that he take appropriate measures for the rescue and continued protection of the Buddhist religion.
Now King Pusyamitra had always behind him as his bodyguard a very big yaksa. He was so strong that the king was never beaten. But Damstranivasin grabbed that yaksa who was Pusyamitra’s aide-de-corps, and went for a walk in the mountains. Pusyamitra then fled south to the great ocean; but there the yaksa Krmisa took up a great mountain and set it down on top of Pusyamitra, his troops and his chariots. He was then given name Sunihita (“Well-put- down”). With the death of Pusyamitra, the Mauryan lineage came to an end.