THE WESTERN GANGAS
Sasanakōṭa Plates of Mādhavavarman I.
18. A set of four copper-plates belonging to this dynasty was secured for
examination during the years from the Collector of Anantapur (C. P. No. 4). It is
said to have been discovered some years
ago in the village Śāsanakōṭa in the Hindupur taluk of the district and was in the possession of Mr. K. Gopalakrishnamacharlu
of the Collector’s office. The script in which the inscription is engraved is an early
variety of the southern class of alphabets and is definitely anterior to that of the
Penukoṇḍa plates of Mādhavavarman II and may be assigned to about the 4th-5th
century A. D. It is dated in the very first year of Mahārāja Mādhavavarman. son of Koṅgaṇivarma-Dharmamahādhirāja of the kāṇvāyana-gōtra and the
Jāhnavēya-kula, the progenitor of the dynasty who ‘established a kingdom by
the strength of his own arms’, and registers the royals grant of the village Vēlputtoru in Paru[vi*]-vishaya as a brahmadēya to a Brahman named Dhara-
Śarman of the Vatsa-gōtra and Taittirīya-charaṇa.
Since the publication of the Penukoṇḍa plates of Mādhavavarman II
mentioned above, which was supposed to be the earliest document of the family,
two earlier grants have come to light, viz., the Beṇḍigānahaḷḷi plates of Kṛishṇavarman (Mys. A. R. 1915, p. 40) and the Kuḍithiyam plates of the same king
(Mys. A. R. 1932, p. 124). In both of these the king calls himself Kṛishṇavarma-Dharmamahādhirāja, son of Mādhavavarma-Mahādhirāja and grandson of
Koṅguṇivarma-Dharmamahādhirāja of the Kāṇvāyana-gōtra and the Gaṅga-kula.
Now on account of the earlier script of the present grant and the relationship
of the kings mentioned above, this grant is the earliest genuine copper-plate document discovered so far not only king Mādhavavarman I but also for the
Gaṅga family.* In determining the dates of the Penukōṇḍa plates of the present
king’s grandson Mādhava II. Dr. Fleet has given A. D. 475 as a very good
* Evidently Musalimaḍugu, Nandikotkur taluk, Kurnool dt.
* It has since been published by me in Epigraphia Indica, Vol. XXIV, p. 234.