Emergence of Science:
We gave you a glimpse of the social structure in India during the Iron Age. With the emergence of ordered urban societies, the stage was set for a tremendodevelopment in science and technology. We will now describe, in brief, the advances in various areas of science, such as astronomy, mathematics, chemistry, botany and zoology.Astronomy and Mathematics We have described earlier the level of knowledge in astronomy in the Rigvedic times. Mucof the later work in astronomy in this period is merely a detailed or expanded version of thastronomical knowledge already found in Rig Veda. We could, perhaps, understand this feature if we realise that the developments in astronomy in this period, stem mainly from tastrological practices of sacrificial ceremonies. As a matter of fact, astronomy degeneratedinto astrology in the later years of this period. You already know about the Sulvasutras which we described in Sec. They show a fairly high level of knowledge of geometry. Arithmetic was equally well developed. Numbers in multiples of 10 going up to as high powers of 10, as 1012 (one million million)were known and used. All the arithmetic operations on numbers were also known. Sulvasutras contain several instances of addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and squaring of fractions. Quadratic equations, indeterminate equations, permutations and combinations also appear in the Sulvasutras.