Slavery was a cosmopolitan societal immorality and had its origin even from the early period of history. In India. its beginning is closely associated with the caste system. It is believed that Sudras might hold been reduced to slaves. A. L. Basham considers the Aryan transition of the nativs into slaves as the beginning of bondage in India. In ancient India slaves were good treated and their right good protected. Sarat Patil usage in his book “Dasa. Sudra. Slavery” that the Sanskrit term- Dasa which refers to was break one’s back. was derived from the root word hyrax which means one who perform humble service. Harmonizing to Arnold J. Taynbee. bondage was a non voluntary system of personal relation. resting wholly upon force. Encyclopaedia Britannica states that slave is a status in which one homo being is owned by another. Slaves can be inherited moved or sold without sing of their feelings and may be badly treated. In India the jurisprudence caste communities were made slaves by the higher caste and their appear ever to hold been enslaved status.

However there was no caste of slaves. although most slaves belonged to jurisprudence caste. In other words people belonging to socially and economically jurisprudence subdivision were easy reduced to the place of slaves. Work forces have enslaved one another for two chief grounds. The first as the signifier of penalties and the second was a kind of response to demand for inexpensive and expensive labor force. But there were several other categories of slaves in subsequently time- 1. Children Born of a slave usually became slaves for their slave maestro. 2. A free adult male might sell himself and his household members into bondage in times of agonies or hurt. 3. Some people besides be reduced to break one’s back for offense

4. Many people became slaves of familial factors 5. Some people were ever slaves. for they were tied down to the temple slaves. Megasthenes provinces that all the Indians are free and non one of them is slave. But A. L. Basham in his book “the admiration that was india” strongly criticised Megasthenes. He says Megasthenes’s observation was surely incorrect. but Indian bondage was milder than the signifier of western bondage. Hence Megasthenes might non hold been recognized the dasa as a slave. In the Vedic literature there are mention to the gifts of dasis. and the heroic poem and the Puranas references dasis as companies of the queen and princes. Manu has two poetries on slaves. Kautilya in Arthasastra besides give some inside informations about bondage. In the ulterior smritikaras like Katyayana. Narada and Brihaspati besides deal with bondage. Assorted signifiers of slaves are besides mentioned in Buddhist and jain texts. Manu declares that there are seven sorts of slaves existed in ancient India —

1. One who captured in conflict
2. One who sold himself for sustain
3. One who born in the house of a slave adult female.
4. One bought as a slave
5. One given as a slave to other
6. One inherited as a slave
7. One who is slaved by the opinion of tribunal.





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The 9th stone edict of Asoka enjoins that jurisprudence of piousness consists in the sort and proper intervention of slaves and hired retainers. Kautilya refers to several sorts of slaves—

1. Those who were captured in conflict
2. Those who sold themselves at the clip of their hurt.
3. One who is born of a slave adult female
4. One who could non pay his debt.
5. One condemned to slavery by the opinion of tribunal.



Narada and Katyayana refer to fifteen sorts of slaves. Sangam literature reflects the being of bondage. Most of the mention says about temple and agricultural slaves. really rare reference about domestic slaves. Harmonizing to beginnings. there were merely two types of slaves in Ancient India. Subsequently when temples were built. temple slaves came into being.

AGRARIAN SLAVES OR LAND SLAVES: –

Those who involved in agricultural part. they were known as agricultural slave. If a maestro sale his land to other maestro. the land slaves besides transferred to the align of lands. Franchis Buchanan references in his book “A Journey from Madras to the states of Mysore Canara and Malabar” . that the Brahmins had received so many lands from the male monarchs. These lands were chiefly cultivated by the slaves of the inferior caste called Shudras. The full procedure of agribusiness was done by the land slaves. They worked hard but their difficult work ne’er made them rich ; they were exploited by the land proprietors. There was no restriction of work or work hours.

There duty was- 1. Plowing of land 2. transfering work 3. seeding seeds 4. irrigating field 5. reaping harvests 6. threshing 7. faning 8. mucking 9. fencing 10. watching harvests. Harmonizing to Arthasastra of Kautilya a stricking societal development of the Mauryan period was the employment of slaves in agricultural operations. It seems that during the Mauryan period. slaves were engaged in agricultural work on a big graduated table. During period of Asoka about 1 lakh 50 thousand war prisoners brought by Asoka from Kalinga to Pataliputra may hold been engaged in agribusiness and its allied activities.

DOMESTIC SLAVE OR HOUSEHOLD SLAVE: –

Those who worked in the house of the maestro. they were known as domestic slave. Most of the slaves in ancient India were attached with the house of Masterss. They attached whole life to function Masterss from forenoon to dark. By and large kids were sold by their parents during dearth and they became domestic slaves. They were regarded as the belongings of their maestro. The domestic slaves normally formed an built-in portion and provided societal honor for their Masterss. Maestro positions were determined by the figure of slaves. There duty was- 1. Draining H2O 2. Hewing wood 3. Cleaning house 4. Cooking 5. Washing cloth 6. Waiting on table 7. Taking out the refuse 8. Shoping 9. Child be givening 10. Helping in dressing and discasing. They were besides helped their maestro in his concern or in his cultivation work.

TEMPLE SLAVES: –

This sort of bondage was non forced type. it is voluntary bondage. Heycolas community dedicated their whole life to the God. They will remain in temple. they don’t come in house. They dance before the God to delight them. But ulterior yearss this sort of bondage became really complex. Royal people misuse them. Some letterings testify that in the Chola periods work forces. adult females unable to gain a suited support. offered themselves voluntarily in the temple services. Often the parents use to sell their kids for temple services. Male member of temple service is known as Devadasa and female member is known as Devadasi. Devadasis dedicated their life to god. The other name of the devadasis was Rudrakanni. Padila. Koelpandy etc.

Treatment: –

Treatment on slaves. whether domestic or agricultural. by and large depended on the master’s character. Maestro has the right to sell or give away his slaves. direct out to other maestro to gain money. There were mentions in Jatakas. that the maestro provided rice. meat. milk. and fabrics to their slaves. The belongings of slaves finally belonged to the maestro. The maestro can torment them. oppose them. Slavery is a sort of development. Slave markets are non mentioned in the early beginnings but in the mediaeval period we find that there was trade in slave miss between India and Roman imperium in both waies.

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