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South Indian Inscriptions






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The Pallavas of Kanchi

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Tribhuvanamalla Vikramaditya VI

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....The Ron inscription introduces the Ganga subordinate Mahamandalika Butayya as the governor of Gangavadi-96,000, Belvola-300, Puligere-300 provinces in Saka 864 (=A..D. 942) while his Kurtakoti inscription mentions the chief as holding charge of the same provinces in Saka 868 (=A.D. 946).  In the Naregal inscription of Saka 873 (A.D. 950) Butayya Permadi is stated to be ruling over the Gangavadi 96, 000 province extending as far as peldore.  The river Peldore is generally identified with the river Krishna but the Gangavadi territory is never known to have extended up to the Krishna.  It is therefore plausible that the Peldore of this record represented the river Tungabhadra which was the northern limit of the Gangavadi-96,000 province.  From the inscriptions cited above, it appears the Butuga was in possession of Belvola and Purigere divisions as early as A.D. 942 and 946 in contradiction to the statement made in the Atakur inscription (Ep. Indi., Vol VI, p. 55) that Krishna III was pleased with the valour of Butuga displayed in the killing of Rajaditya and presented to his Ganga subordinate the districts of Banavase, Belvola, Purigere, Kisukadu and Bagenadu.  Since we know that Rajaditya was killed by Butuga in the battle of Takkolam in about A.D. 975 (Ep. Indi., Vol. IV, P. 350) that Butuga received from Baddega these provinces except Banavse, as dowry (balivali) at the time of his marriage with Revaka or Revakanimmadi.  The marriage must evidently have taken place before A.D. 942 since Butuga is mentioned in the records quoted above as the Bhava (brother-in-law) of Kannaradeva.  Butuga must have held these districts unobstructed till A.D. 946; but in the interval between A.D. 946 and 948-9, when he received them again as presents from Krishna II (see the Atakur inscription), he must have been deprived of this portion of his territory by his enemies, probably, his elder brother Rachamalla, who according to the Deoli plates of A.D. 940 (Ep.Ind., Vol V, pp. 188 ff) had been ousted from Gangavadi and in his place Butuage had been set up on the Ganga throne.  Rachamalla’s attempt to recover the territory permanently (through he might have held it for a short while) must have ended in his disaster; for he is stated, in the subsidiary inscription on the top of the Atakur stone (Ep. Ind., Vol. VI, p. 55) dated Saka 872 (=A.D. 949 From the way in which this incident has been introduced, it appears that it was an event of recent occurrence.  It is therefore not unlikely that Rachamalla’s death at the hands of Butuga happened sometime between A.D. 946 and 949.

The Ron inscription mentioned above records an interesting historical fact that utayya laid seige to Rona for collecting certain incomes such as bhattaya, perohi (?) and for establishing the right of using the village threshing floor (kana) and that at the instance of the Mahajanas of the place, he was opposed by Pampayya of Vaji-kula who in the tumultuous fight lost his life.  It is not known under what circumstances Butuga had to attack Rona and whether the disaffection at Rona had any origin in the unsettled political conditions due perhaps to the quarrel between the rival claimants to the throne, viz., Butuga and Rachamalla.  The Naregal inscription of A.D. 950 reveals for the first time that Butuga had another wife Padmabbarasi besides Revakanimmadi mentioned above.  She is stated to have constructed a basadi (Jaina temple) at Naregal to which a dana-sala (charity house) had been attached.  In the Soratur inscription of A.D. 951, Kannaradeva is given the birudas: Anevedanga, Madagajamalla and Chalakenallata and his body-guard (amgaraka) Ruddapayya is stated to be administering the village Saratavura.  Another important record for the political history of the period comes from narasalgi according to which Chalukya-Rama Ahavamalla Tailaparasa of the Satyasraya family was governing the Taddevadi-1,000 district as anuga-jivita in Saka 886 (=A.D. 965).  Tailaparasa is evidently Ahavamalla Taila II who is stated in the fragmentary inscription at Gadag of the time of Vikramaditya VI to have destroyed some Rattas, killed Munja, taken the head of Panchaladeva, possessed himself of the Western Chalukya territory and begun to rule from the year Srimukha which fell exactly 10 years after the date of the Narasalgi record.  This is the first and the only record that established the subordinate position of the Chalukyas under the Rashtrakutas before the former recovered their ancestral territory under Taila II.

Kottigadeva the last king of the family is represented in the volume by four inscription ranging in date between Saka 891 and 893.  The Nagavi inscription of Saka 891 mentions his subordinate Satyavakya-Permanadigal, i.e., Marasimha II and the latter’s officer Boluga who is described  as the crest –jewel of Papakalla-kula.  The record was composed by poet Samiyanna ‘in sweet and chaste Kannada’.  His Savadi inscription refers to the same Ganga chief and records a gift to the temple of Bhagavati made by Sunkada-Ballayya.  The record was composed by the ‘born poet’ Narana and engraved by naganaraya ‘in swift hand’.  Samiyanna and Narana were two early kannada poets not hitherto known, who flourished in the reign of Kottigadeva, but whether they were the authors of any literarily works is not disclosed.


The earliest inscription of the Western Chalukya dynasty in the volume comes from Kurhatti (No. 45) in the Navalgund taluk of the Dharwar district.  It refers itself to the reign of Ahavamalla (Nurmadi-Taila II) and is  dated in Saka 902, Vikrama (=A.D. 980).  We have seen above that Ahvamalla Taila figured as a subordinate of Rashtrakuta Krisha II in Saka 886 (=A.D. 965).  This state is pushed back by seven years in a record recently food at karjol (B.K. No. 178 of 1933-34) which introduces the chief as an officer of Krishna III in Saka 879.  The latest year for Taila II is contained in the Hosur Inscription of Saka 915 which shows that his political career lasted for at least 36 years  though it is possible that he should have commenced to rule sometime b before Saka 879 and that his last year should have terminated sometime before Saka 924, the earliest known date of his son and successor Irivabedanga Satyasraya.  The Kurhatti inscription mentioned above records and interesting historical fact that the local chief kalidhurandhara had pleased Kannaradeva by his valour.  This kannaradeva is apparently Rashtrakuta Krishna III under whom Taila was an officer.  This shows that the subordinates of the Rashtrakutas transferred allegiance to their new masters, ie., the Chalukyas, without resistance, on the overthrows of the former.  Koralgunda, the Manneya of Mulugunda-12 and a scion of the Sindarace and Kunnala family was a subordinate officer under Taila II (No. 47).  The districts of Belvola and Purigere were, during his rule, subject to the administration of Sobhanarasa who according to the Nilgund inscription of Saka 904 succeeded is elder brother Kannapa sometime before  that date.  When exactly the latter event took place is not certain though it is known that Sobhanarasawas already a governor of the provinces in Saka 902 (No. 45).  Sobhanarasa was succeeded by Dandanayaka Kesavarasa sometime between Saka 926 the latest known year for the former and Saka 934 the earliest known date for the latter (Kotavumachgi inscription).  While editing the Kotavumachgi inscription of Saka 934, Mr. R.S. Panchamukhi has shown that the Belvola and Purigere districts were successively held by Kannapa, his younger brother Sobhanarasa, Kesavarasa and his son Vavanarasa in the 10th and the 11th centuries of the Christian era, under the Chalukyas.  (Ep. Ind., Vol. XX, page 64).  It may be noted that Sobhanarasa whose territory originally consisted of three provinces, viz., Banavasi, Two-Six hundreds and Kogali (Ep. Ind., Vol. IV, pp. 206 ff), is described in the Gadag inscription of Saka 924 as the governor of the Belvola-300, Purigere-300, Kundu-500 and Kukkanur-30 (No. 49), while the Yalisirur inscription of Saka 926 adds Halasige-12, 000 but omits to specify the Kundur and Kukkanur divisions (No. 50).

Taila II was succeeded by his son Irivabedanga Satyasraya for whom the earliest record in the volume bears a date in Saka 924 (No. 48).  The Yalisirur inscription  (No. 50) contains an interesting information that this charter which had been conferred in Saka 926 having been broken away, was renewed in the 13th year of the reign of Bhulokamalla Somesvara II showing thereby how the charitable endowments of the previous kings were maintained during the period of the Western Chalukyas.  The renewed chart3r is called a Pratisasana.

Another important inscription of the reign of this king is found at Lakkundi.  It is dated in Saka 929 and states that Danachintamani Attiyabbe preferred a request to the king soon ‘after the latter’s conquest of the entire Gurjara (country)’, for endowing a gift to the Brahmajinalaya which she had constructed at Lokkigundi.  This is the first epigraphical reference to the conquest of the Gurjaras by Irivabedangadeva which from the wording of the inscription appears to have taken place a little before Saka 929, when the gift recorded therein was made.  Attiyabbe is credited with having constructed one thousand and five hundred Jaina temples in different parts of the territory.  Her charity and generosity are highly extolled in the inscription.

  She was the daughter of mallpayya and the wife of Nagadeva, son of Dhalla of the Vaji family and her son was Padevala Taila who at the time of the record was governing the Maseyavadi-140 division.  These details are happily corroborated by the classical poems Ajitapurana and Gadayauddha of the poet-laurate Ranna who flourished in the Chalukya court towards the end of the 10th century A.D.  The Ajitapurana which, as the author declares, was composed at the instance of Attiyabbe, the homonymous lady of the present inscription, narrates that Mallapa evidently Mallapayya mentioned above, was the general of Taila II, and had two of his daughters namely Attimabbe and Gundamabbe married to Nagadeva, son of the great minister Dhalla.  To the former was born Padevala Taila whose proper name was Anniegadeva.  On the death of the Nagedeva.  Gundamabbe ascended the pyre of her husband and died by the rite of sahagamana while Attimabbe spent the rest of her life in piety by installing 1, 500 Jaina images and, by her gifts, acquired the title Danachintamani.   The Gadayuddha describes the valour of Irivabedanga in scaring away the army of the elephants of the Gurjara king, in verse 16 of the first asvasa, which fact is mentioned in the present inscription by the expression Sakala-Gurjara-vijaya (1.52).  The Lakkundi record was copied by Bahubali, son of Siripala Setti.  Its author, by the spontaneity dignity and the majesty of style, must have been no mean poet of his time and could very well be classed in the rank of poets like Ranna, the author of the Gaddayuddha.  It may be noted that in the eulogy of Attimabbe given in the present record, occurs a verse beginning with ‘Unnata-Kukkutesvara-Jinesvaranama’, which is verbatim found in the Ajitapurana (asvasa I, verse 61) Since this poem had been completed, as recorded in it, by Saka 915, the composer of the inscription must have been greatly influenced by the works of his contemporary poet Ranna and copied in toto the verse referred to above, from the Ajitapurana.  The epithet Konkana-bhayankara applied to Sobhanara, in the House record of Saka 915 has perhaps a reference to the defeat by Irivabedanga of Aparadita* a coastal chief, evidently of Konkan (Thana), (Bom. Gaz., Vol. I, Part II, History of the Konkan, p. 15) described in Chapter I, vv. 22-28 of the Gadayuddha.  It is noteworthy that Irivabedanga is given in this record the epithet Ahavamalla which clearly shows that it was not a distinguishing biruda of Taila II as supposed hitherto but was borne by more than one king of the family.

After Irivabedanga, his nephew Tribuvanamalla Vikramaditya V succeeded to the Cahlukya throne.  He is represented by two inscriptions dated in Saka 932 and 934, respectively.  He was succeeded by his younger brother Jayasimha II whose inscriptions in the volume range in date from Saka 941 to 964.  They disclose the names of the several officers of the king ruling over different parts of his kingdom, of whom mention may  be made of the following: - Nagavarmayya, a trusted servant of Mahamandalesvara Bhimadeva of the Rashtrakuta family who was the governor of the banavasi, Santalige and Kisukadu districts (No. 57)- the family name of Bhimadeva had hitherto not been known; Mahasamanta Dasarasa governing Maseyavadi-140 in Saka 944 (No 58); Ghateyankakara apparently Irivanolambadhiraja Ghateyankakara, who according to the Alur inscription of Saka 933 had married a daughter of Irivabedangadeva (Ep. Indi., Vol. XVI, p. 27) governing Nolambavadi and Karividi-30; her name is given here (No. 61) as Mahadevi who in Saka 946 was administering Maravolal; Vavanarasa, son of Dandanayaka Kesava governing the Belvola and Purigere districts in Saka 950 (No. 65);  Mahasamanta Nagavarmarasa called also Yadavanarayana in Saka 957 (No. 66); Mahasamanta Mailaraa administering pagalatti in Saka 954 (No. 67); Ereyamma of the Ratta family (No. 74) in Saka 962 and Jagadekamalla Nolamba-Pallava Permanadi governing five villages in Maseyavadi140, in Saka 964 (No. 75).  In one of the records (No. 68), king Jayasimha is given the epithets Trailokyamalla and Vikramasimha, not known hitherto as having been borne by him.  We know that his son Somesvara I assumed by more than one king of the family and that the occurrence of mere epithets could not be considered as a criterion in fixing the period of undated records (see above under Rashtrakutas, p.v)  Of the 29 records belonging to the reign of Trailokyamalla Ahavamalla (Somesvara I), the earliest bears the Saka date 966 while the latest is dated in Saka 989.  The following important points are gathered from these epigraphs.  The Mugad inscription  (No. 78) of Mahamandalesvara Cha tayyadeva of the Kadamba family extends the period of the chief’s rule up to atleast Saka 966 (=A.D. 1044) i.e., nearly 36 years beyond the latest known date for him, ie., A.D. 1008 (Fleet’s Dynasties of the Kanarese Districts, p. 565).  The Bagevadi inscription (No. 93) mentions the king as ruling from Vagghapura  in Karahada-nadu and introduces Mailaladevi as his senior queen in Saka 971, i.e., A.D. 1048-49.  Since Chandrikadevi was the chief queen of the king till A.D. 1047-48, it is possible that Mailaladevi was raised to that position on the death of the former which must probably have taken place in about A.D. 1048. An inscription (No. 85) at Sirur in the bagalkot talk of the Nijapur district, dated in Saka 971 opens with the praise of the goddess of mahalakshmi at Kollapura (Kolhapur) and describes the deity as riding over the lion-vehicle.  It introduces a hitherto unknown queen of Trailokyamalla by name Liladevi and states that her mother’s guruvara (probably father) was Marasingha-prabhu, a descendant of Prabhu Rajavarman who was a votary of the goddess Mahalakshmi.  Thus Trialokyamalla had five wives of whom four are already brought to our notice, viz., Bachaladevi, Chandrikadevi, Mailaladevi, and Ketaladevi (Dynasties of the Kanarese Districts, p. 438).  Whether Marasimgha was her grandfather or a preceptor (guru) of her mother is not clear though the latter alternative is precluded by his description as an administrator (prabhu) and not as a spiritual personage.  He also figures in another mutilated and damaged epigraph of the same place, dated in Saka 985 (No. 99)

The Nandavadige inscription of this king (No. 103) introduces a chief with the epithets Mahamandalesvara and Bhavana-Gandhavarana and states that the latter constructed several temples and basadis in different parts of the Chalukya Empire, of which mention may be made of the Mahasrimanta-basadi which was apparently constructed to perpetuate the memory of Mahasrimanta or Mahasirivanta, an officer under Rashtrakuta Krishna II mentioned above.  It is worthy of note that the inscription records among other gifts, an endowment of 40 mattar of land to Dhoroja for panchamahasabha.  From ties, it is evident that the pancha-mahasabda was a rare privilege enjoyed by persons of high rank and office and that it consisted in the sounding of five great sounds by pipers, etc., corresponding to the modern ‘salute of guns’ enjoyed by Chiefs, Governors, Governor-General, etc.,  Accordingly Dhoroja who, as the context suggests, was a piper, was given land to maintain this honour for the chief.

Among the records of Bhuvanaikamalladeva published here it may be mentioned that the Pattadakal inscription (No. 110) discloses the fact that the early Chalukya kinds celebrated their patta-bandha ceremony at the town of Kisuvolal in consequence of which the place became famous.  It thus explains the modern appellation of Pattadakal given to it.  The Nidgundi inscription (No. 117) which is dated in the last year of his reign, i.e., Saka 998 reveals the existence of a Chalukya princess named Suggaladevi, the daughter of Ahavamalla Somesvara I and younger sister of Bhuvanaikamalla, who was married to Mahamandalesvara Singannadeva, the Governor of Kisukadu-70 division.  Suggaladevi is introduced as administering the agrahara Nidugundi in Kisukadu-70.

In this brief historical introduction, attention has been drawn only to the main political and historical details referred to in the inscriptions.  Though the important points connected with these inscriptions have already been placed before the scholars in the Archaeological Survey Reports for the years 1926-30, there is still a wide scope for the study of these records in regard to the religious, social and educational activities that were current in the early period and it is hoped that the scholarly public will derive benefit by a careful and detailed study of these epigraphs.

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