A green rapid biogenic synthesis of silver nanoparticles (Ag NPs) using Terminalia chebula (T. chebula) aqueous extract was demonstrated in this present study. The formation of silver nanoparticles was confirmed by Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR) at 452 nm using UV-visible spectrophotometer. The reduction of silver ions to silver nanoparticles by T. chebula extract was completed within 20 min which was evidenced potentiometrically. Synthesised nanoparticles were characterised using UV-vis spectroscopy, Fourier transformed infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR), powder X-ray diffraction (XRD), transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM). The hydrolysable tannins such as di/tri-galloyl-glucose present in the extract were hydrolyzed to gallic acid and glucose that served as reductant while oxidised polyphenols acted as stabilizers. In addition, it showed good antimicrobial activity towards both Gram-positive bacteria (S. aureus ATCC 25923) and Gram-negative bacteria (E. coli ATCC 25922). Industrially it may be a smart option for the preparation of silver nanoparticles.