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Saturday, December 09, 2006

The Indian Analyst


South Indian Inscriptions


  Tamil Inscriptions


Inscriptions of Southern India were begun to be collected systematically by Professor Hultzsch from the latter part of 1886 when he was appointed Epigraphist to the Government of Madras. The Publication of these documents with texts and translations was taken up simultaneously and the following fascicule of South Indian Inscriptions were issued between the years 1886 and 1903 : - Volume I ; Volume II - Parts i to iii; and Volume III - Parts i and ii.  They include 321 records edited critically and supply all the material that may be practically be found necessary for constructing the rough outlines of Chola and Pallava history. In the year 1909, the later Mr. V. Venkayya, M.A., Rai Bahadur, Epigraphist to the Government of India, volunteered his services to continue the work of Professor Hultzsch and printed in Volume II, Part iv, such of the inscriptions of the Brihadisvara temple at Tanjore, as had not been published already in Parts i to iii of that volume. Before issuing further volumes of South Indian Inscriptions it is found necessary to complete Volumes II and III with an alphabetical index and a historical introduction. The latter, in the case of Volume II, had been already drawn up by Mr. Venkayya and appears under his signature. I have only added here and there some foot-notes to Mr. Venkayya's introduction, besides giving a complete index to the volume and the texts and translations of two Pallava grants which are expected to supplement materially, the information already supplied by the records of the family published in the earlier parts.

It will be found on perusal that Mr. Venkayya's introduction deals almost exclusively with the reign of Rajaraja I, though the volume includes many other records, viz., 29 of Rajendra-Chola I, one of Rajendradeva, one of Kulottunga I, one of Vikrama-Chola, three of a probable Pandya king Konerinmaikondan, two  of the Vijayanagara kings Tirumalaideva and Devaraya I, one of the Tanjore chief Achyutappa-Nayaka and one of a certain Mallappa-Nayaka of about the same period, - coming from the Tanjore Temple, and nine Pallava and Chola inscriptions from other places. Any attempt at giving a full account of these kings will only swell the introduction which is already big.  I, accordingly, reserve my remarks on them for future volumes of the South Indian Inscriptions which will deal with Cholas (other than Rajaraja), Pallavas, Pandyas and the Vijayanagara kings.

                                                                                                                          H. KRISHNA SASTRI

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