The Indian Analyst

South Indian Inscriptions



Volume - III




Part - I

Inscription at Ukkal





Part - II

Kulottunga-Chola I

Vikrama Chola

Virarajendra I

Kulottunga-Chola III

Part - III

Aditya I

Parantaka I


Parantaka II



Aditya II Karikala

Part - IV

copper-plate Tirukkalar


Other South-Indian Inscriptions 

Volume 1

Volume 2

Volume 3

Vol. 4 - 8

Volume 9

Volume 10

Volume 11

Volume 12

Volume 13

Volume 14

Volume 15

Volume 16

Volume 17

Volume 18

Volume 19

Volume 20

Volume 22
Part 1

Volume 22
Part 2

Volume 23

Volume 24

Volume 26

Volume 27





Annual Reports 1935-1944

Annual Reports 1945- 1947

Corpus Inscriptionum Indicarum Volume 2, Part 2

Corpus Inscriptionum Indicarum Volume 7, Part 3

Kalachuri-Chedi Era Part 1

Kalachuri-Chedi Era Part 2

Epigraphica Indica

Epigraphia Indica Volume 3

Indica Volume 4

Epigraphia Indica Volume 6

Epigraphia Indica Volume 7

Epigraphia Indica Volume 8

Epigraphia Indica Volume 27

Epigraphia Indica Volume 29

Epigraphia Indica Volume 30

Epigraphia Indica Volume 31

Epigraphia Indica Volume 32

Paramaras Volume 7, Part 2

Śilāhāras Volume 6, Part 2

Vākāṭakas Volume 5

Early Gupta Inscriptions

Archaeological Links

Archaeological-Survey of India


VI.- Inscriptions of Kulottunga-Chola I

No. 64 to 65 Inscriptions at Tiruvorriyur & Tiruvalangadu

No. 66 to 68 Inscriptions at Kolar, Somangalam & Conjeeveram

No. 69 to 70 Inscriptions at Tirukkalukkunram & Srirangam

No. 71 to 72 Inscriptions at Kilappaluvur & Tiruvidaimarudur

No. 73 to 74 Inscriptions at Cholapuram & Conjeeveram

No. 75 to 76 Inscriptions at Tirukkalukkunram & Jambukesvara temple

No. 77 to 78 Inscriptions at Kavantandalam & Perumber

The copper-plate grants allot to the Eastern Chalukya king Rajaraja I. a reign of 41 years,[1] while the Pithapuram inscription of Mallapadeva gives him 40 years.[2]  Accordingly, his death and the accession of his son Kulottunga I. would prima facie fall in A.D. 1061-62 or 1062-63.  This date is not borne out by the Telugu inscriptions of Kulottunga I. which contain both a Saka date and a regnal year, and according to which the accession took place in Saka-Samvat 991-92 = A.D. 1069-71.[3]  And Professor Kielhorn’s calculations of the dates of Tamil and Kanarese inscriptions prove that his reign commenced between the 14th March and the 8th October A.D. 1070.[4]

The original name of the king was Rajendra-Choda,[5] and in the Tamil inscriptions of his 2nd, 3rd and 4th years (Nos. 64 to 67 and 77 below) he is actually called Rajakesarivarman, alias Rajendra-Choladeva (II.).  The account of Kulottunga’s birth and youth in the Kalingattu-Parani[6] seems to imply that he was adopted by Gangaikonda-Chola (i.e., Rajendra-Chola I.), who apparently had no son of his own, and that he was nominated the heir-apparent of his grandfather.  If the Kalingattu-Parani (xiii.  Verse 62) calls Kulottunga’s father Pandita-Chola, this can hardly refer to his real father, the Eastern Chalukya king, but must mean his adoptive father, Rajendra-Chola I.  That the latter had the surname Pandita-Chola may be concluded from two of his Tanjore inscriptions,[7] which mention a regiment entitled Pandita-Sola-terinda-villigal, i.e., ‘the chosen archers of Pandita-Chola.’  While still heir-apparent,[8] Kulottunga I. distinguished himself by capturing elephants at Vayiragaram and by defeating the king of Dhara at Sakkarakottam.[9]

According to the copper-plate grants his first charge was the country of Vengi,[10] which had been ruled over by his father and paternal grandfather.  Instead of ‘the Vengi country,’ Kulottunga’s Tamil inscriptions use the expression ‘the region of the rising of the sun,’[11] and the Pithapuram pillar inscriptions employ the term Andhra-mandala or Andhra-vishaya,[12] i.e., the Telugu country.  Kulottunga is stated to have entrusted this province to viceroys, first to his uncle Vijayaditya VII., then to his second son Rajaraja II., next to his third son Vira-Choda,[13] who assumed office on the 23rd August A.D. 1078,[14] and finally to Choda of Velanandu.[15]  Vijayaditya VII.

Is said to have governed Vengi for 15 years and Rajaraja II. for 1 year.  If we deduct the sum of these two reigns from A.D. 1078, the year of Vira-Choda’s appointment, the result is A.D. 1062 as the date of Vijayaditya’s accession.  This year coincides with the end of the reign of the Eastern Chalukya king Rajaraja I., but is 8 years prior to Kulottunga’s coronation.  This discrepancy may be explained in the following manner.  The Chola king Virarajendra I. claims to have conquered the country of Vengi and to have bestowed it on Vijayaditya.[16]  This expedition may have taken place just after the death of Rajaraja I. who was succeeded in A.D. 1062 by his brother Vijayaditya VII. It looks as if the rightful heir Kulottunga I. had been ousted by the latter with the assistance of Virarajendra I.[17]  This would explain the fact noted before, that Kulottunga came to the throne 8 years after his father’s death.  As noted by Dr. Fleet,[18] Vijayaditya VII. Had later on to apply to Rajaraja of Kalinganagara (A.D. 1071 to 1078) for assistance against the Choda who threatened to absorb his dominions.  This Chola enemy was no doubt Kulottunga I. who, after Vijayaditya’s death, repaced him by Rajaraja II. and soon after by Vira-Choda.

The localities in which the inscriptions of Kulottunga’s 2nd year[19] (A.D. 1071-72) are found show that he was then in possession of Tiruvorriyur, Tiruvalangadu and Kolar.  An inscription of his 3rd year (No. 67 below) is found at Somangalam (near Manimangalam), and one of his 4th year (No. 77 below) at Kavantandalam (between Conjeeveram and Uttaramallur).

The Chellur plates of Vira-Choda state that Kulottunga I. conquered the Kerala, Pandya and Kuntala countries and was anointed to the Choda kingdom under the name Kulottungadeva.[20] Instead of ‘the Choda kingdom’ the Pithapuram inscription of Mallapadeva uses the expression ‘the five Dravidas.’[21]  The first inscription in which he is called Kulottunga-Choladeva is one of the 5th year of his reign, i.e., A.D. 1074-75, at Conjeeveram (No. 68 below).  It states that he defeated the king of Kuntala, that he crowned himself as king of the Chola country, and that he decapitated an unnamed Pandya king.  In speaking of ‘the prostitution of the Lakshmi of the Southern region.’ And ‘the loneliness fo the goddess of the country on the banks of the Kaveri,’ the inscription suggests that, before Kulottunga’s arrival in the South, the Chola country had lapsed into a state of anarchy and lost its ruler.  A similar account of the condition of the Chola country is given in the Kalingattu-Parani, which states besides that Kulottunga defeated Virudaraja[22] and that ‘the king of kings’ had met with his death.  A third account of the same events is furnished by Bilhana in his Vikramankadevacharila.[23]  During the reign of his elder brother Somesvara II. (A.D. 1069 to 1076), Vikramaditya VI. Married the daughter of the Chola king.  Shortly after “the news reached him that his father-in-law was dead and that the Chola kingdom was in a state of anarchy.”  He immediately started for Kanchi and Gangakundapura[24] and put his wife’s brother on the Chola throne.  A few days after his return from this expedition, “he learnt that his brother-in-law had lost his life in a fresh rebellion and that Rajiga, the lord of Vengi, had taken possession of the throne of Kanchi.”  Rajiga found an ally in Somesvara II., but Vikramaditya VI. Put Rajiga to flight, took Somesvara II. prisoner and ascended the throne himself in A.D. 1076.  Dr. Fleet was the first to recognize that Rajiga is a familiar form of Rajendra-Choda, the original name of Kulottunga I.[25]  The Chola king whose daughter became the wife of Vikramaditya VI. Is identical with Virarajendra I., one of whose inscriptions proves that he entered into friendly relations with Vikramaditya VI.[26] The son and successor of Virarajendra I. and the brother-in-law of Vikramaditya VI. Was Parakesarivarman, alias Adhirajendra.[27]  He is probably the ‘king of kings,’ whose death, according to the Kalingattu-Parani, preceded Kulottunga’s arrival in the Chola country.  Finally, the Virudaraja of the Kalingattu-Parani, and the king of Kuntala whom Kulottunga claims to have defeated, is Vikramaditya VI.  The war between these two kings must fall before A.D. 1074-75, the date of No. 68 below.

An inscription of the 11th year = A.D.  1080-81 (No. 78 below) adds that Kulottunga I. drove Vikkalan (i.e., Vikramaditya VI.) from Nangili (in the Kolar district) by way of Manalur to the Tungabhadra river, and that he conquered the Ganga-mandalam and Singanam.  A later inscription (No. 73 below) substitutes Alatti for Manalur and ‘the country of Konkana’[28] for  Singanam.  Neither Manalur[29] nor Alatti can be identified.  Singanam seems to refer to the dominions of Jayasimha III., Vikramaditya’s younger brother to whom he had given the office of viceroy of Banavasi.[30]

Other inscriptions assert that Vikkalan and Singanan had to take refuge before Kulottunga in the western ocean.[31]  It may have been in the course of the war against the two brothers that Kulottunga “captured a thousand elephants at Navilai which was guarded by the Gandanayakas” (read Dandanayakas ?).[32]  For, Navilai is probably the capital of Navale-nadu, a district of Mysore, which is mentioned in inscriptions at Kattemanuganahalli and Belaturu.[33]  In the Vikramankaderacharita we of course look in vain for an account of reverses experienced by Vikramaditya VI., but are told that he “had once more to extinguish the Chola” before entering his capital of Kalyana,[34] and that after a long period of peace he again put the Chola to flight and took Kanchi.[35]

No. 69, of the 14th year, adds that Kulottunga I. put ‘the five Pandyas’ to flight and subdued the western portion of their country, including the Gulf of Mannar, the Podiyil mountain, Cape Comorin and Kottaru.  He limited the boundary of the Pandya country and placed garrisons in the strategically important places of the newly acquired territory, e.g., at Kottaru.  Along with the Pandya country he conquered Kudamalai-nadu, i.e., the western hill-country (Malabar), whose warriors, the ancestors of the Nairs of the present day, perished to the last man in defending their independence.  Of special places occupied on the western coast, the Kalingattu-Parani  (xi. Verse 71) mentions Vilinam[36] and Salai, and the Vikkirama-Solan-ula states that at Salai Kulottunga I. twice destroyed the ships (of the Chera king).[37]  The defeat of ‘the five Pandyas’ and the burning of Kottaru are referred to also in an inscription at Chidambaram[38] and in the Kalingattu-Parani.[39]

Before the 26th year of his reign (No. 72 below), i.e., A.D. 1095-96, Kulottunga conquered the country of Kalinga.  This expedition s described in detail in the Kalingattu-Parani.  It would fall into the reign of Anantavarman, alias Chodaganga, of Kalinganagara (A.D. 1078 to about 1142).[40] Rajakesarivarman, alias Rajendra-Choladeva II. or Kulottunga-Choladeva I., had various other names.  The Chellur and Pithapuram plates mention his surname Rajanarayana,[41] from which the designation of a temple at Bhimavaram was derived.[42]  Hence certain coins with the legend Cholanarayana  have perhaps to be assigned to him.[43]  The Kalingattu-Parani calls him Kulottunga-Chola, Karikala-Chola, Virudarajabhayamkara,[44] Abhaya and Jayadhara.[45]  The last name is applied to him in two inscriptions at Chidabaram and Tiruvorriyur.[46]  An inscription at Pallavaram[47] belongs to the 39th year of Sungandavirtta-Kulottunga-Soladeva, i.e., ‘Kulottunga-Choladeva who abolished tolls,’ and three later inscriptions[48] mention the name of the same king.  As the Vikkirama-Solan-ula states that Kulottunga I. abolished tolls,[49] it has to be assumed that Sungandavirtta was another of his surnames.  A list of those which appear in his inscriptions in the Telugu country I have given elsewhere.[50]  From his Chola predecessors he inherited the titleUdaiyar, ‘the lord.’ Later on he assumed the titles Chakravartin, ‘the emperor,’ and Tribhuvanachakravartin, ‘the emperor of the three worlds,’ which occur first in inscriptions of the 14th and 20th years (Nos. 69 and 71 below), respectively.

Kulottunga’s capital was Gangapuri or Gangakundapura,[51] i.e., Gangaikonda-cholapuram, which had been founded by his grandfather Rajendra-Chola I. alias Gangaikonda-Chola,[52] and which had been the residence of the latter and of Virarajendra I.[53]  The city second in importance was Kanchi.[54]  An inscription of the 30th year of Kulottunga’s reign (No. 73 below) is dated from his palace at Kanchipuram.

The copper-plate grants state that Kulottunga I. married Madhurantaki, the daughter of Rajendradeva of the solar race,[55] and had by her seven sons.[56]  The eldest Vikrama-Choda,[57] was crowned (most probably) on the 18th July A.D. 1108.[58]  The second, Rajaraja II., was viceroy of Vengi from 1077 to 1078 and was succeeded by the third brother, Vira-Choda.

Kulottunga’s queen Madurantaki is not mentioned by name in his inscriptions.  But she is probably intended by ‘the mistress of the whole world’ or ‘the mistress of the whole earth,’ to whom many of his inscriptions refer.  An inscriptio of the 26th year (No. 72 below) gives the names of three additional queens : - Dinachintamani, Elisai – Vallabhi and Tyagavalli.  In the 30th year (No. 73 below) Dinachintamani seems to have been dead and Tygavalli to have taken her place.   The Kalingattu-Parani (x. verse 55) states that Tyagavalli exercised equal authority with the king himself.

Kulottunga I. is stated to have reigned for 49 years in the Chellur plates of his grandson,[59] and for 50 years in the Pithapuram inscription of Mallapadeva.[60]  This would carry us to A.D. 1118-19 or 1119-20.  Hence he must have appointed his son Vikrama-Chola co-regent during his life-time (in A.D. 1108).  The latest epigraphical date of Kulottunga I. is the 49th year of his reign in two inscriptions at Gangaikondacholapuram (No. 80 of 1892) and Achcharapakkam (No. 256 of 1901).

[1]  Ind. Ant. Vol. XIV. P. 55 ; above, Vol. I. p. 59 ; and Ep. Ind. Vol. V. No. 10, verse 4.

[2]  Ep. Ind.  Vol. IV. No. 33, verse 21.

[3]  Ibid. Vol. VI. P. 220 f.

[4]  Ibid. Vol. IV. P. 266.

[5]  Above, Vol. I. No. 39, verse 8 ; Ep. Ind. Vol. IV. P. 227 ; and Vol. V. No. 10, verse 7, and p. 105.

[6]  Canto x. verses 5 to 7 and 18.

[7]  Above, Vol. II. Nos. 12 and 13.

[8]  See the translations of Nos. 68 and 69 below.

[9]  See the translation of No. 64 below, and Kalingattu-Paani, x. verse 23.  Rajendra-Chola I., Virarajendra I and Vikramaditya VI. Also claim to have taken Chakrakotta.  See above, p. 70 and note 1.

[10]  Above, Vol. I. No. 39, verse 9, and Epp. Ind. Vol. V. No. 10, verse 8.

[11]  See the translation of No. 64 below.

[12]  Ep. Ind. Vol. IV. No. 4, verse 27, and No. 33, verses 18 and 22.

[13]  Above, Vol. I. p. 51, and Ep. Ind. Vol. IV. P. 49.

[14]  Ind. Ant. Vol. XIX. P. 426.

[15]  Ep. Ind. Vol. IV. P. 50.


[16]  Page 65 above.  The identification of this Vijayaditya with the Western Chalukya prince Vishnuvardhana-Vijayaditya has to be given up.

[17]  I suspect besides that Virarajendra I. is identical with the Dramila enemy of Rajaraja of Kalinganagara and with Rajendra-Chola, the father of Rajasundari ; Ind. Ant.  Vol. XVIII. P. 169, text line 85, and pp. 164 and 175.

[18]  Ind. Ant. Vol. XX. P. 276.

[19]  Nos. 64 to 66.

[20]  Above, Vol. I. No. 29, verse 10 f.

[21]  Ep. Ind. Vol. IV. P. 228.

[22]  Canto iv. Verse 6, and canto x. verse 25.

[23]  Professor Biihler’s Introduction, pp. 34 to 37.

[24]  I.e., Gangaikondacholapuram.  Compare above, pp. 33 and 64 f.

[25]  Ind. Ant.  Vol. XX. Pp. 276 and 282.

[26]  Above, p. 65 and note 1. In an inscription of the 6th year of Virarajendra I at Tiruvallam (No. 16 of 1890) he is stated to have deprived Somesvara [II.] to his necklace : (I. 6) ; compare also Ind. Ant. Vol. XXI. P. 283.

[27]  Above, page 114 f.

[28]  The conquest of Konkana is a tributed to Kulottunga I. in the Vikkirama-Solan-ula ; Ind. Ant. Vol. XXII. P. 142.

[29]  The encounters at Manalur and on the Tungabhadra are alluded to in the Kalingattu-Parani, xiii. Verse 93, and iv verse 7.

[30]  Professor Biihler’s Introduction to the Vikramankadevacharita, p. 38, and Dr. Fleet’s Dyn. Kan. Distr. P. 453.

[31] See above, Vol. II. p. 391, note 7, and Vol. III. p. 119.

[32]  Kalingattu-Parani, xi. Verse 74.

[33]  Ep. Ind.   

[34]  Professor Buhler’s Introduction, p. 38.

[35]   Ibid. p. 44.

[36]  According to the late Professor P. Sundaram Pillai, Vilinam is about 10 miles to the south of Trivandram ; Ind. Ant.  Vol. XXIV. P. 254.

[37]  Ind. Ant. Vol. XXII. P. 142.  The same exploit is attributed to Rajaraja I. and Rajadhiraja ; above, Vol. II. p. 241, and Vol. III. p. 52.

[38]  Ep. Ind. Vol. V. Appendix, p. 51, No. 358, and p. 52, No. 363.

[39]  Canto xi. Verse 69, and canto iii. verse 21.

[40]  Ep. Ind.  Vol. V. Appendix, p. 51, No. 358, and p. 52, No. 363.

[41]  Above, Vol. I. No. 39, verse 12,  and Ep. Ind. Vol. V. No. 10, verse 11.

[42]  Ep. Ind. Vol. IV. P. 230.

[43]  Ind. Ant. Vol. XXV. P. 321.

[44]  Canto vi. Verse 14, and x. verse 25, where the context suggests that Virudaraja was a biruda of Vikramaditya VI.

[45]  Canto xi. Verse 68, and passim.

[46]  Ep. Ind.  Vol. V. p. 105 f.

[47]  No. 312 of 1901 ; above, Vol. II. p. 111, note 3, and p. 112, note 7.

[48]  No. 5 of 1899, No. 125 of 1896, and No. 84 of 1897.

[49]  Ind. Ant. Vol. XXII. P. 142.

[50]  Ep. Ind. Vol. VI. P. 220 f.

[51]  See the Kalingattu-Parani, xiii. Verse 92, and the Vikramankadevacharita, vi. Verse 21.

[52]  Ind. Ant. Vol. XXI. P. 323.

[53]  Above, pp. 33 and 64 f.

[54]  Ind. Ant. Vol. XIX. P. 333 and Vikramankadevacharita, Introduction, pp. 35 and 44.

[55]  This was probably the Chola king Parakesarivarman, alias Rajendradeva (p. 58 above), whose reign commenced (approximately) on the 28th May A.D. 1052 (Ep. Ind. Vol. VI. P. 24).

[56]  Above, Vol. I. No. 39, verse 12 f., and Ep. Ind. Vol. V. No. 10, verse 11 f.

[57]  Ind. Ant. Vol. XIV. P. 55.

[58]  Ep. Ind. Vol. IV. P. 266.

[59]  Ind. Ant.  Vol. XIV. P. 55.

[60]  Ep. Ind. Vol. IV. P. 227.

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