www.whatisindia.com

What Is India News Service
Wednesday, November 15, 2006


 

South Indian Inscriptions


 

INTRODUCTION

Rulers of Kongu. —The Cholesvara temple at Sangramanallur in Coimbatore District yielded 32 inscriptions of the different rulers of Kongu viz., Viranarayana, Virachola, Virarajendra, Vikramachola Virpandya. The undated inscriptions Nos. 166, 167 and 198 of Konerinmaikondan, reveal that during the period of early Kongu rulers, privileges were bestowed on the temple officials for the maintenance or supervision of the endowments made over to the temples of Viracholisvaram-udaiya-nayanar and Avinasi-yaludaiyar- Nos. 166 and 167 record the setting up of the image of Tribhuvanasundarar and goddess Nachchiyar in the former temple, for the merit of the king (mamadi) and the grant of the village Devampadi alias  Viranarayananallur in Kavadik ka-nadu along with income from taxes for providing lamps to the deity. The record No.166 further mentions that the samantars and administrators (adikarancheyvargal) are not to supervise the endowment made by the king but it must be done by the srimahesvaras and devakanmigal  of the temple. It may be noted that the signatory of the grant Viranarayana Virasingadevan in No. 166 figures also as a signatory in No. 167.  The name of the village Viranarayananallur and of the persons who attested the grant named Viranarayana Virasaingadevan seem to suggest that they came to be called after the overlord Viranarayana.  Hence Konerinmaikondan may be identified with Viranaranarayana who assumed the throne in 1139-40 A.D.  The second regnal year of this king may equated with 1140-41 A.D. , which is the date of a record (No. 198) from Avanashi in the taluk of the same name in Coimbatore District.  This reveals another interesting information regarding the colonisation of the village Tanavasi alias Viracholanallur in Kitip-nadu, granted by the king Rajakesari Konerinmaikondan during his 2nd regnal year on the occasion of his coronation, for the worship of the deity Perunkarunaichchelviyar of the Tirukkamakkottam in the temple of Avinasiyaludaiyar.  The gift was enjoined to the heirs of Madevandar including Tiruvegambam-udaiyan who were to enjoy the income from the taxes on this village.  It further states that the devakanmigal of this Nachchivar temple were to collect the taxes levied on the village and the samantas should not interfere into it.  Madevandar would decide in regard to the colonising of the village in the absence of the settlement by the rightful families and the families thus settled should measure out oil for the goddess.  Nos.  146 and 145 belonging to the reign period of Konerinmaikondan refers to the construction of the temple of Viracholisvaram-udaiyar at Kolumam.  The one dated in the 23rd year (No. 146) of this king engraved on the south wall of the central shrine records a royal grant of land and some privileges to the architect (sirpachari) named Maniyan Kayilayam alias Virachola achariyan who erected the temple from upana to stupi and built the vimana.  It also mentions that he would arrange for carrying out the temple repairs,  for the installation of the deities in stone and metal, for providing the paintings in the tirunadaimaligai (circum-ambulatory passage) and the tiruv-eduttukkatti  (raised wall or coping) and for getting the donations inscribed in the temple.  No. 151 from Sangramanallur, Udumalaipet Taluk, Coimbatore District states that during the reign period of Konerinmaikondan Virarajendradeva, due to an invasion and destruction of Kolumam in Karaivali-nadu, a number of temples (named) in the places in this nadu were devastated.  The king, referred to above, granted the village Irattaiyan padi in Vaikavi_nadu as a devadana to these (temple) including the   temple of Viracholisvaram-udaiyar as prayaschitta for the damage occurred to several temples. It is not unlikely that this invasion must have been undertaken by the northerners (vaduga) as it is stated in a record of this king dated in his 45th year (1251—52 A. D.) that an old image of Aludaiyar Nittaninraduvar (i.e., Nataraja ) in the Viracholisvaram-udaiyar temple at koluman received damages in their war and a new image was again set up by one Alavandan Avanasi alias Kachchivarayan. It is not unlikely that the northerners referred to hear may be identified with the Hoysalas in the north of the Kongu territory.  

It is interesting to note that an order dated in the 8th year of the reign of Vira-pandyadeva, relating to the matter of colonisation of the village Sevur alias Sembiyan Kilandinallur in Vadaparisara-nadu, a devadana village of the god Avinasiyaludaiyar which was a kani of the said village (No.197). It is stated that the people would settle here from the month of Panguni during the same year and would enjoy the income from the lands in the next year (i. e., the 9th year) but they should pay from the year after that (i.e., 10th year) the paddy and the income from several taxes likemel-irai, kil-irai, ottachchu, sungavari, elavai, ugavai, tirumau-katchi, upp-ayam, kurradendam puraadal, sirrayam, tariy-irai, tattar-pattam, yilam punsey  (tax for toddy drawing), paraikkana, tol-attu (tax on hides and skins) tiruchchulavari, tiruvaslviniyogam, sumai-sungam, etc., besides 10 achchu annually.  

In this village the members belonging to the two communities i. e., Vellala and Puluva issued a deed of agreement according to which two families each from Vellala and Puluva should be removes from the 9th year of the king from the colony of Sevur. The record which relates to this settlement does not quote any reason for this decision. It may be inferred that probably these four families must have transgressed the family promise or emigrated from out of the colony. This agreement was attested by members from different villages (No. 196). 

Hoysalas.No. 764 from the Varadarajaperumal temple at Alambakkam Lalgudi Talu, Tiruchirappalli District, which is undated, contains two sections. Of which, the first is partly in verse and partly in prose, while the second section is in prose. The record in verse states that the temples of Dachchina Kailayamudaiyar and Tirumerkoyil (the temple in the west, i. e., Vishnu) and the Madurantakappereri were caused to be constructed by a certain Kalakiyamudaiyan Surriy [?] Sirkondilangu Chatumaraivanan, a palli  of Nenmali This record also refers to the renovation of these temples, when they become dilapidated in course of time, by Vittappan, son of Aru[la]lunathan of Nellainagar, who is described as ‘a person with valour and Sattiyavachakan.’ 

The portion in prose below this, records that Valiya-dandanayakkan son, of [Ada}ppillai-dandanayakkan of [Aranappuram] of Madurantakam in Tondaimandalam, who was a dandanayaka  of Narasingadevan, caused the repairs to this Sri vimana  (of the a central shrine) on which the record is engraved. The name of this temple is not given. This general is identical with his namesake who is mentioned as the son of Dutapillai-dandanayakkan in the Tamil portion and as the arbhaka  (son) of Duta in Sanskrit verse in a record (S. I. I., Vol. V, No. 659, verse 1, line 1) from Tirumalavadi in Udaiyarpalayam Taluk of the same district. It is possible that their overlord Narasimha mentioned in these two inscriptions is evidently the same as Hoysala Narasimha, who held sway over this area. It may be said from the above records that his reign period witnessed many benevolent acts including the construction of a tank called Madurantakappereri. One the grounds of paleography Narasimha may be considered to be identical with the second king of that name who is known to have ruled from 1220 to 1238 A. D.  

It is known from the Tirumalavadi inscriptions (S. I. I., Vol. V, No. 659) that Ballaya-dandanayakkan’s father was Dutappillai-dandanayakkan. So the name Adappillai is to be read as Dutappillai and his son Ballaya-danadanayakkan was known as Valiya-dandanayakkan in the present record.

The only dated reference to the general Vallaya-dandanayaka is found in the inscription (A. R. Ep., 1920, No. 39) from Tirumalavadi belonging to Rajaraja III dated in his 20th year, Karkataka, ba. Panchadasi, Monday, Pushya corresponding to 1235 A. D., July 16, who was a contemporary of Hoysala Narasimha II (1220-38 A. D.).

Further, this inscription reveals that the generals of the Hoysalas are known to have made munificent gifts during the reign period of the Cholas.  

Reddis---The Motupalli pillar inscription (No. 635) is an edict of the Reddi king Annapottu-reddi issued to the merchants in the islands and those residing in the seashore towns, whose interests were looked after. We have a similar instance of an edict (assuring) safety that has been granted to traders by sea in the regin period of Kakatiya Ganapatideva dated Saka 1166 (1244-45A. D.) (Ep. Ind., Vol. XII, pp. 188 ff.). In the latter record, the customs duties were levied on cargo carried by ships from one place to another. But in the reign period of Annapottu-reddi, certain concessions were shown to the foreign traders for the purchase and sale of merchandise. The levy known as aputrika-dandam (levy on those who have no issues or children) was not be imposed on foreigners. Except on articles like gold, silver, the cloth for women, for other items of merchandise the duty was levied as before. In a regulation instituted by the above merchants, it specifies the procedure that was to be followed in the anjinanpugalidam  and states that for every 100 articles imported from the south, three articles should be given and for every 100 clothes of export, 2 clothes should be given, while for every 100 articles imported from the north, 5 articles should be given and for export of 3 clothes, same number of clothes should be given, and in the islands for every 100 clothes imported, on lease and export, only 3 clothes should be given, etc. It may be inferred from this that the rate of customs was not levied uniformly in South, North and in the islands. The South was placed at an advantageous position as the duty levied on them was very much lesser in ratio. The reason for this, perhaps, is not known. 

Kakatiya Chief.---No. 579 from Karempudi, palnad Taluk, Guntur District bearing the date Saka 1186, Raktakshi, introduces the chief Gandapendara Jannigadeva with the titles Rakkasa-Gamgabemkomdu-ganmba Ganpatideva-dakshana-bhuja-damda, oddaraya-abhimanga-churukara mavanamkakara, brahmarakshasa, etc.  It is known that the Kayastas started their career as cavaliers under Kakatiya Ganapati and styled themselves as maha-mankalesvara and Gandpendara (Ep.Ind., Vol. XXV, pp. 272 ff.).  He came to be called ‘the right hand of king Ganapati’ (Ganapatideva-dakshana-bhuja-damda) as he appears to have played an important part in his kingdom.  The title Oddaraya-abhimana-churukara indicates that he acquired the same after defeating the oddaraya who may be identified with Narasimha I, the Eastern Ganga king of Kalinga.  (See N. Venkataramaniah: Cuddapah Inscriptions, Introduction. pp. 109-10).  The fourth epithet mavanamkakara has been taken to mean that Jannigadeva was associated with his uncle in his early years.  The Tripuranthakam (S.I.I., Vol X, No. 565) and Nilagangavaram inscriptions (Ep. Ind., Vol. XXV pp. 270 ff.) state that Jannigadeva was the son of Chandalamba or Chandaladevi, the sister of Gangeya Sahini.  The lady Cendubavi-Ammangaru mentioned in the Macherla record (A. R. Ep., 1941-42, No. 50) as the younger sister of Gangeya Sahini has been identified with Chandaladevi (A. R.Ep., 1939-40 to 42-43, part II, para 76; Ep.Ind., Vol XXV, pp. 271-72).  Thus these records disclose the relationship of Jannigadeva and Gangeya Sahini namely sister’s son (svasur-apatyam) or the latter as the uncle (mava) of the former.  Since the Anantaram record (A.R.Ep., 1973-74, No. B 3) dated in Saka 1181 (1259 A.D.) states that Jannigadeva was the son-in-law (jamata) of Sri Ganga-Senapati, son of Dasavanta-pandita and the grandson of of Danupandita, it may surmised that Jannigadeva must have married his own uncle’s daughter i.e., the daughter of Ganga-Senapati.  The term mava, may therefore be taken to mean both uncle and father-in-law.  It is because that after Gangeya Sahini came his sister’s son (udabhavat=tad-anu dvibhujo nripa[h*] svasur=apatyam=amushya Janardanah (S.I.I., Vol. X, No. 465, text 11. 8-9) or after his father-in-law(mava) the latter assumed the epithet mavanamkakara. 

The records of Gangeya Sahini are available as late as Saka 1179(A.R.Ep., 1937-38, No. 233 and A.R.p., 1905, Nos. 231 and 176).  Jannigadeva appears to have succeeded Gangeya Sahini sometime after Saka 1179 as the latter’s latest inscription is dated in that year.  He held the governorship first under Ganapati till the 63rd year (1261-62 A.D.) of his reign, which date would correspond to Saka 1184 (A. R. Ep., 1930-31, No. 289).  Though Jannigadeva is known to have issued a record independently without referring to his over-lord in Saka [11]82 (A.R. Ep., 1941-42, No. 50), it cannot be said that he did not acknowledge the over lordship of the then ruling king i.e. Ganapati, for he expressed his loyalty to the reigning king in his inscription of Ska 1180-82 from Pondallur (Ep. Ind., Vol. XXXV, p.273, n.1), of Saka 1181 from Anantaram in Nalagonda District (A. R. Ep., 1973-74, No. B 3) and of a Saka 1184 equated with his 63rd regnal year from Alugurajupalle in Guntur District.  (A. R. Ep., 1930-31, No. 289).  It is, therefore significant that the record under review and Nandalur inscription (A. R. Ep., 1907, No. 610) of Jannigadeva bearing the Saka date 1186 do not refer to the overlord whereas his earlier inscriptions ranging from Saka 1180-84 refer to him as feudatory of Ganapati.  The date given in the record would fall in the reign period of Ganapati’s daughter and successor Rudrabma (accn. 1260 A.D.)[1].  But the record between Saka 1189 and 1191 (A. R. Ep., 1930-31, No. 324; 1939-40, No. 1 and 1909, No. 573) mention Rudradeva as the ruling king and his subordinate Jannigadeva.  It is only in the records after Saka 1184 and before Saka 1189, that due to the attempts of consolidation made by the queen Rudramba, Janni-gadeva tried to assert his independence.  Thereafter, he realised the feudatory status (contra : A. R. Ep., 1910, part II, para 46). 

Vijayanagara Rulers.- King Harihararaya-udaiyar is credited with a titile Karnnataraja in a record at Komaralingam, Udumalaipet Taluk, Coimbatore District (No. 140).  This records a royal grant of 20 ma of land on the borders of Tiruvalanadurai along with gold and paddy towards the payment of its tax as tiruvidaiyattam to god Kariyapiran at Agara Kumarankabhima alias Paridara-sahodarach-chaturvedimangalam.  The first name Komarankabhima was evidently the name of a chief whose identity is not clear.  The Hoysala records of this region containing reference to the chiefs of Danayakan-kottai who claimed to have belonged to the Matigolayakula and who were the feudatories of Vira Ballala III had the characteristics title Paradarisahodara (No. 201).  Hence the name of village after the above mentioned chief vedimangalam indicates that it was so named after the above mentioned chief who had such a title (A.R. Ep., 1906 No. 444). 

The cyclic year Khara in which the record is dated, along with other details i.e., Adi 12 may perhaps correspond to 1411 A.D., July 10, the Saka year being 1333.  The king Harihararaya may be identified with prince Harihara III, son of Devaraya I and the present record later by two years may be second in date to his Madavilagam record, dated in the year Sarvadhari, Tai i.e., Saka 1331, January. (A.R.Ep., 1920, Nos. 225 and 227) 

No. 62 from Tirukkalukkunram which belongs to Devaraya dated in the year Paridhavi records a land transaction made by the Sri-Rudra-Mahesvaras of the temple of Tirukkalukkunram-udaiya-nayanar at Tirukkalukkunram, a taniyur in Kalattur-kottam in Jayangonasola-mandalm.  It is interesting to note that in the transaction undertaken by Sri-Rudra-Mahesvaras, the Srimahesvaras are stated to have attested the document.  The cyclic year Paridhavi along with other details viz., Singha su. 7, Visakha, Sunday correspond to 1432 A.D., August 3.  The Saka year was 1354 falling in the reign period of Devaraya II.  

The Ummattur Chiefs.—The chief Nanjaraya or Nanjanna-udaiya figures in four records (Nos. 210, 212, 220, and 222) and the dates ranging from 1497-1517 A.D.  The record (No. 220) which furnishes the latest date does not give other details.  No. 222 from Pattanam, Palladam Taluk is a record f Vira Nanjana-udaiyar.  This is dated in the year Piravava i.e., Prabhava, Chittirai I corresponding to 1507 A.D., March 28 (Sunday).  The Saka year would be 1429.  In the Avanasi record (No. 211) dated one-and-half years later (1508 A.D., November 13) it is stated that a merchant of Emmarakal in Tinaikkanambi-nadu (Terkanambi-nadu) made a gift of 20 pon to the deity Avinasi-lingam in Dakshina-Varanasi, during the rule of Vira Chikkaraya-udaiyar, son of Vira Najaraya-udaiyar.  We may infer that the latter was administering Terkanambi-nadu.  This record and two others of Nanjaraya dated respectively Saka 1419 and 1421 (=1497 and 1499 A.D.) give us specific titles like jagadadhipatiyappa, srikailasanivasa, parvatiprananatha, elladevara-vallabhan which are associates with the chiefs of Ummattur named Vira Nanjaraya and Vira Chikkaraya-udaiyar.  We know that a Ummattur chief was defeated by Vijayanagara king Krishnadevaraya sometime between 1509-29.  If on the date of the record No. 220 Vira Nanjanna-udaiyar was administering Terakanambi-nadu, followed by his son Chikkaraya in 1508 A.D., we may infer that by the date of the former record, Ummattur had not been conquered by Krishnadevaraya.  But it has been argued on the basis of a grap occurred between 1504 and 1530 A.D. and from the availability of  record of 1513 A.D., October 4, that the Ummattur chief had been defeated before this date by Krishnadevarya, who had bestowed the mayakatana of Terkanambe-sime upon Saluva Govindaraja, son of Rachiraja.  (E.C., Vol. III (Revised), 1974, Intro. P. 117). 

In the light of the Nambiyur record of 1517 A.D. (No. 220) could it be said that Vira Nanjunna-udaiyar was holding control over the areas around Terkanambi-nadu?  Also from the absence of records of this chief or from the reference to his administration over Terkanambi region beyond 1508 AD., we may infer that by that date, the region was lost to the Vijayanagara king Krishnadevaraya by the Ummattur chiefs. 

No. 222 is an interesting record which refers to the conversion of a village Mudukkadu in Viyiraikka-nadu into a Nanadesippattanam as well as an Anjinanpugal-idam by the merchants of Adichetti group of Srinathapattianam after the recolonisation of the same, which had been in ruins for sometimes.  We have instances in the Chola records of such conversion of villages into mercantile towns by the merchant group. 

Miscellaneous—No. 319 from Tirukkachchur, Chingleput Taluk and District describes a certain Perunambigal, a member of the Gadikai (Skt. Ghatika) (i.e., a centre of learning ) of Kavanur alias Poyyamolimangalam in Konasura-nadu in Sengattuk-kottam, as Muttamil Acharyar and Tamil karaikanda.  He has assemed the title Muttamil Acharyar, for he must have been proficient and or an exponent in the three kinds of Tamil literature which are yal (literature), Isai (Music) and Natagam (drama).


[1] The second year of her record from Tripuraniakam, Kurnool District, (S.I.I. Vol., X No. 398) and the details of date Saka 1183, Dunmati, Karttikai su. 15 Tuesday, regularly correspond to November 8, 1261 A.D.

Home Page


Archives | Links | Search
About Us | Feedback | Guestbook

© 2006 Copyright What Is India Publishers (P) Ltd. All Rights Reserved.