History of Nepal

Nepal is a country with an amazingly complex history. However, Nepal did not have a tradition of keeping records in written forms as found in many other countries in the world. We explore Nepal’s history in this section. We will present Nepal’s ancient history in little depth and will focus mostly on modern times as information is more readily available.

History of Conquest

Ancient Nepal

Let’s go back in time when a Tarai prince was born in 563 B.C. This prince would ultimately leave his prince duties behind and started a journey as a monk to find answer to problems faced by the people living around him. He gave up chasing after worldly possessions in search of a spiritual truth. Through this journey this prince named Siddhartha Gautama finds enlightenment for himself and for the world and becomes known to the world as Gautama Buddha. His disciples and everyone today know him simply as “Buddha,” which means “The Enlighten One.”

That was a time more than 2000 years ago. This was the era when a group of people called “Licchavis” invaded the land of present day Nepal from what is now North India. Licchavis introduced the Nepalese to the religion of Hinduism, one of the oldest religions in the world.

Licchavis were good to their people. During their rule, Nepalese art and culture flourished. The Licchavis lasted more than 600 yrs.

Medieval Nepal

Licchavi rule ended in 879, when the Licchavis were replaced by Thakuri rule, which was not that good to Nepal. Some people even refer to it as Nepal’s dark ages.

The Thakuris created problems between Nepalese, to create different towns. A few centuries later, a Thakuri king named Arideva turned Nepal’s fortune around. This was when he found Malla dynasty. During the Malla dynasty, Nepal’s culture again improved. But it was at a price. During Malla dynasty, Nepal broke into disagreeing city-states, and occasional wars between them broke out. The Malla kingdom was at its best around the 15th century.

Modern Nepal

The rulers of the country’s most eastern region, Gorkha, thought they could do a better job of leading Nepal, so they went to war with the Malla dynasty. After 27 years of fighting, in 1768, the Gorkhalis defeated the Malla kings of Kathmandu valley. They moved the capital of their Kingdom to Kathmandu (which used to be called Nepal back then) and named their kingdom as Nepal. This Shah king Prithvi Narayan started expanding the country’s borders to Eastward and Westward along the Himalayas.


Prayatna Sharma The content of this page is developed by Prayatna Sharma, a Grade 8 student of Broadview Avenue Public School, Ottawa, Canada. The Nepali Language Class, to which Prayatna is a student, was made possible due to collaborative efforts of Nepalese Canadian Association of Ottawa (www.nepalese.ca) and Ottawa Carleton District School Board (ocdsb.ca).

After our students research all the material and write their material with the best of their abilities, our teachers correct them and enhance the grammar and writing to make them presentable to all people around the world.

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