The oldest school in Asia is Nalanda University, an ancient seat of learning and Buddhist monastery located in Bihar, India. Established in the 5th century CE, Nalanda University was one of the world’s earliest universities and was home to thousands of scholars from across Asia.
Nalanda University was founded by the Gupta Empire and was a renowned center for Buddhist teachings and learning for centuries. It was renowned for its rigorous scholarship and was visited by students from as far afield as Tibet, Korea and China. Its library was said to be the biggest in the world and its library was said to have contained up to nine million volumes of texts.
Nalanda University enjoyed great prestige and influence in the region, and many of the leading Indian scholars of the time studied and taught there. It was also a center of art and culture, with many sculptures and works of art being produced at the university, such as the famous Nalanda Mahavihara Stupa.
Nalanda University was destroyed in the 12th century by the invading forces of the Islamic ruler Bakhtiyar Khilji, who destroyed the university’s great library and put an end to its long history of scholarship and learning. The ruins of the university still stand today, a reminder of its long-standing legacy and its role in the development of education in Asia.