Please note that the content of this book primarily consists of articles available from Wikipedia or other free sources online. Mahapadma Nanda (450 BCE - 362 BCE) was the first king of the Nanda dynasty. According to some sources, he was born from the union of a courtesan and a barber, while others describe him as an illegitimate son of the last king of the previous Shishunaga dynasty, Mahanandin. The Nandas, under Mahapadma Nanda, established the first great North Indian empire with its political centre in Magadha, which would in the following years lead to the largest empire in ancient India, to be built by the Mauryas. Mahapadma Nanda vanquished the old dynasties of North, not as was customary, to extract tribute from them and to be recognized as the most powerful, the samrat or the chakravartin, but rather in order to dethrone them and declare himself as an ekachhatra", the only emperor in the entire land. The collapse of the old Ksatriya dynasties under the rigorous power politics of Mahapadma Nanda, who is explicitly denigrated as the son of a Shudra, and the support extended to followers of non-Vedic philosophies, all has been described as negative signs in the Puranas, which often identify Mahapadma Nanda''s rise as a mark of Kaliyuga. "
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