Vaishali is considered the first republic in the world, Vaishali derives its name from King Vishal of the Mahabharata era. It is said that he built a great fort here, which is now in ruins. Vaishali is a great Buddhist shrine and also the birthplace of Lord Mahavira. It is said that Buddha visited this place thrice and spent a long time here. The Buddha also gave his last sermon at Vaishali and announced his nirvana here. After his death, Vaishali also held the second Buddhist Council.The great Lichchavi clan ruled Vaishali in the sixth century BC and the empire extended to the hills of Nepal. The Lichchhavi state is considered the first republic state of Asia. According to the Jataka tales (Buddhist story books accounting for the different births of the Buddha), Vaishali was ruled by about 7707 kings of the Lichchavi dynasty. The great Magadha king Ajatashatru founded Vaishali in the fifth century BC and after that Vaishali gradually lost its glory and power.