Uttar Pradesh forms a major area of the Northern fertile plain or the Indo-Gangetic plain. This area is said to have been occupied by the group of people referred to as “Dasas” by the Aryans. The main occupation of these inhabitants were agriculture. Till BC 2000, the Aryans had not settled in this region.
It was through conquest that the Aryans occupied this area and laid the foundations of a Hindu civilization. The regions of Uttar Pradesh was said to have been the ancient Panchala country. The great war of the Mahabharata between the Kauravas and Pandavas was said to have been fought here.
Besides the Kurus and Panchalas, the Vatsas, the Kosis, Hosalas, Videhas etc formed the early region of Uttar Pradesh. These areas were called Madhyadesa. It was during the Aryan inhabitation that the epics of Mahabharata, Ramayana, the Brahamanas and Puranas were written.
During the reign of Ashoka, works for public welfare were taken up. Having rich resources there was active trade within and outside the country. The rule of the Magadha empire brought Buddhism and Jainism into this region. This period witnessed administrative and economic advancement.
The Kushanas exercised their power over this region till 320AD. The territory passed into the hands of the Guptas during whose rule, the Huns invaded this region. After the decline of the Guptas, the Maukharis of Kannauj gained power.
During the rule of Harshavardhana, Kannauj was an important city. After his rule political chaos set it. It was amidst this confusion that the Muslims invaded into Utter Pradesh though the society was dominated by the Rajputs, jats and other local chiefs. In 1016AD Mahmud of Ghazni laid his eyes on the wealth of Kannauj.
He was followed by Mohammad Ghori. Throughout the rule of the Delhi Sultanate and the Mughals, the territory progressed. After the Mughals, the Jats, the Rohillas, and the Marathas established their rule. By 1803 the British controlled this region and annexed it by 1856. It was in the Uttar Pradesh (The period between 1857-58) that the first strugglefor liberation from the British yoke was unleashed. The revolt was suppressed and from then till independence it remained under British dominance. In 1950 the state was organized and named as Uttar Pradesh.