by Wytze Keuning

  1. ISBN: 978-81-291-3713-5
  2. Pages: 1080 pages
  3. Date: July 2015


Ashoka The Great presents an extraordinary account of the legendary Indian emperor’s incredible yet controversial life. This fictional biography delves into Ashoka’s quests and moral dilemmas and looks at him not just as a great king, but a spiritual seeker. Originally published in Dutch as a trilogy
in separate volumes, it was written between 1937 and 1947 by Dutch scholar Wytze Keuning in Groningen in the Netherlands and has now been brought together and presented in this single volume for the first time. The book presents a plausible vision of the past balanced by a captivating story, recreating the life and times of the Mauryas with an authenticity that is remarkable. Keuning perfectly fuses facts and thoughts, Mauryan customs and mores, life and reflection on the meaning of life as seen through the vision of Ashoka’s gurus and the history of personal influences upon Ashoka that marked his rule and legacy. This and more makes it a rare and distinguished book.


Wytze Keuning worked as a schoolteacher and headmaster of a primary school in the Netherlands during the latter half of the twentieth century. In 1937, he decided to dedicate his career to writing the historical biography of Ashoka.