Showing posts with label Gujarat. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Gujarat. Show all posts

Myths of Rajput origin

Rajputs are a community in northern India and Gujarat consisting of a number of clans such as the Gujjars. While present-day Rajasthan Rajasthan and Gujarat have been the main centers of the Rajputs, their clans have had a long and significant presence in other states. This page examines certain facts regarding the origins of the Rajputs, based on information gathered from inscriptions, copper-plates, contemporary Prashastis and texts.

Rajput Origins
The term Rajputra first emerged as a title used by some of the rulers referring to their royal ancestors. The term was first used at the time of Harshavardhana and later by the Sena king Vijayasena, a Chahamana Chauhan officer named Jojal and by certain descendants of the Shahi clan of Kashmir. The term was used in inscriptions for the crown princes of the Kalachuri dynasty and by dynasties in Orissa, Bengal and Assam.

Any speculations as to the origins of the Rajputs has to be presaged with the caveat that in general, no single origin-theory can be held to be authoritative. The traditional occupations of the Rajput are war and agriculture. Many scholars have pointed out that these areas lend themselves uniquely to the ingress of groups that were not formerly affiliated with those professions. The gradual accommodation of the new entrants into the social and family circle of the traditional community is the essential quid pro quo of the sanskritization that the aspirant community essays. This phenomenon of gradual inclusion has indubitably obtained in the case of the Rajputs.

The Agni-kunda Legend
The Agni-kunda legend is the best-known traditional account that deals with the origin of the rajput Rajputs. This account begins with the puranic legend wherein the traditional kshatriya Kshatriyas of the land were exterminated by Parashurama, an avatara of Vishnu. Later, sage Vasishta performed a great Yagya or fire-sacrifice, to seek from the gods a provision for the defense of righteousness on earth. In answer to his prayer, one or more youths arose from the very flames of the sacrificial fire, according to different versions of the legend.

Sometime during 16-17th century, the legend came to be applied to the Pratiharas , Chauhans , Solankis , and Paramaras , Rahevars clans. The Gurjara-Pratiharas established the first royal Rajput kingdom in Marwar in southwestern Rajasthan in the 6th century 6th century, the Chauhans at Ajmer in central Rajasthan, the Solankis in Gujarat , and the Paramaras at Mount Abu. Evolution of the legendA large number of inscriptions and texts have come to light since the mid-19th century 19th century that allow us to trace the evolution of this legend in detail.

The Agnikunda story is first found in the Nava-sahasanka-charita by Padmagupta, a fictional romance where the hero is identifiable as Sindhuraja, the patron of the author Padmagupta. This work mentions that the progenitor of the Paramaras was created from fire by sage Vashishtha. During the period of decline of the Paramaras of Dhar, the story finds mention in several royal inscriptions. Later, the story is expanded to include two or three other Rajput clans. Eventually, some scholars proposed that all of the Rajputs were created from the Agnikunda.

Early Paramara Chronology
949 AD: First known Paramara copperplate Harsola copperplate. Mentions Paramara Siyaka as a feudatory of Rashtrakuta Akalavarsha. It mentions the Paramaras as being of the same clan ' as the Rashtrakutas.
975, 986 AD: Vakpati Munja assumes Rashtrakuta name Amoghavarsha and titles Srivallabha and Prathvivallabha, indicating that he regarded himself as being a succesor of the Rashtrakutas of Manyakheta.

Thus, there is no mention of the Agnikunda legend in the early records; the Paramaras appear as a branch of Rashtrakutas, as proposed by D.C. Ganguli.

Chronology:
Gradual Evolution of the Myth
  • 1005 AD: Padmagupta writes the fictional Navasahasanka-charita during the rule of the Parmar king Sindhuraj of Dhara. This is the first mention of the legend wherein the first Paramara is created from an Agnikinda by Vashista.
  • 1000-1055 AD: Bhoja Bhoja no mention of Agnikunda in his copperplates or inscriptions.
  • 1042 AD: Vasantgarh inscription mentiones Paramara origin from Agnikunda.
  • 1070-1093 AD: Udayaditya, Udayapur prashasti mentions Paramara origin from Agnikunda.
  • uncertain date: The Prathviraj Raso is composed, the oldest copies of which do not mention the Agnikunda legend. It is attributed to poet Chand who lived during the rule of Prithviraj Chauhan Prithviraj III , however the language of available manuscripts appears to be much more recent.Ain-i-Akbari by Abul Fazl mentions creation of a Dhanji from an Agnikunda, somewhere in the Deccan Deccan Plateau, to fight Buddhism Buddhism. That fire-born warrior goes to Malava and establishes his rule. When Puraraj, fifth in line from him, dies childless, a Paramara is selected to succeed him.
  • 16th-17th century: Agnikunda legend inserted into the Prithviraj Raso, where three clans, Pratihar, Chalukya and Panwar, are mentions as having been created from the Agnikunda. The legend is not present in the Udaipur manuscript of 1585 CE.
  • Uncertain date: Agnikunda legend in Bhavishya Purana. It mentions four clans: Paramara, Chauhan, Chalukya and Parihara, as having been created from fire to annihilate the Buddhists during the time of Ashoka.
  • 1832 AD: James Tod presents his theory that the Agnikunda legend symbolizes the elevation of Sakas Indo-Scythians, etc. to the status of being Kshattriyas; by implication, all the Rajaputs are descendants of central Asian invaders.
  • 1954 AD: Tod's view is repeated by A. L. Basham in his "The wonder that was India". By now, the view becomes accepted.
Rastrakuta origin
Parmar
There are three schools of thought about the origin of the Paramara clan. The most widely accepted school of thought is that the Paramaras – along with the Chauhans, the Pratiharas (Parihars) and the Solankis (Chalukyas) – were one of the four Agni kula ("fire-born") clans of the Rajputs. In a second school of thought, the Parmar clan is said to have been a tribe of central India that rose to political prominence as the feudatory of the Rashtrakutas. In a third school of thought, the Parmar clan is said to have originally been an inseparable part of the Rashtrakutas, which later branched out from the Rashtrakutas (Rathore)and declared themselves to be a distinct Rajput clan.

Rathore (earlier known as Rastrakutas)
At Hathundi, in what was formerly the princely state of Jodhpur , 10th century inscriptions have been found mentioning kings Harivarma, Vidagdha, Mammata, Dhavala and Balaprasada, all of the Rashtrakuta dynasty. This is not in fact surprising, since the Rashtrakutas held sway over Marwar in that era. However, as we have seen above, the Rathores first emerge in Rajasthan shortly after that same era; therefore, Rathores are offshoots of Rashtrakutas.


Chalukya Origin
Solanki
The Solanki (from Chalukya, an ancient Indian dynasty) are a Hindu clan who ruled parts of western and central India between the 10th and 13th centuries AD. The Solanki are a branch of the Chalukya dynasty of whose oldest known area of residence was in present-day Karnataka. The Solanki clan-name is found within the Rajput and Gurjar communities. The Chalukya gave raise to following clans Shakha- Baghel, Chalke, Ingale, Pisal, Rannavre, Dubal, Mahale and of Solanki: Salunke, Pandhare, Patankar, Patole, Shevale, Babar, Padwal, Magar, Randheer, Ranpise, Sonvane, Gunjal, Lahane, Vyavhare, Navale, Londhe

Kalachuri Origin
Kalachuris ruled North Maharastra during 6th century AD , Pulikesin defeated them and made them feudataries of Chalukyan Empire. After the death of Harshavardhan vinayaditya defeated the successor to Harsha and annexed his kingdom , kalachuries were given charge of vindyas and north of Vindyas. They had martial relationships with other kannada dyansties like Rastrakuta, Chalukya, Solankis , Sena, Malla and pala dynasties. Ruling from the centre of India they are one of the major contributors to Rajput Clan.

Conclusion
The Rajputs did not originate as a tribe or a single community. They emerge from history as a collection of clans ruling different regions. The term Rajput as it is used today refers to the set of intermarrying royal clans mostly with karnata roots. Two lists of 36 clans are found in Kumarpala Charita and the Prithviraj Raso, apparently compiled in the Gujarat/Rajasthan region with its own historical claim to aristocratic Gurjara or Gujjar titles. But as History shows the Rajput are of Kannada origin to start with with Rastrakuta, Chalukya background, when they ruled Rajasthan, Gujarat and North India.

Origin of Idly

Simple dish Idly has been in controversy regarding the origin.

Idly in literature
‘iddalige’, first mentioned in a Kannada work Vaddaradhane of Sivakotyacharya in 920 AD. The Sanskrit Manasollasa of 1130 AD has ‘iddarika’. Tamil apparently only first mentions ‘itali’ in the 17th century.

Gujarati origin
Gujarat have IDADA which is steamed dhokla made from same ingredients as Idly.Namely Urad dhaal and Rice which are fermented overnight and next day steamed.Gujarathis claim Idaly is a dish which came to south from Gujarat during 10/12th century AD.when lot of silk weavers from saurashtra came to south via Maharashtra.The dukkia is first mentioned in AD 1068 in Gujurathi Jain literature, and dhokla appears in AD 1520 in the Varanaka Samuchaya. Besan flour is fermented overnight with curd, and steamed in slabs which are then cut into pieces and dressed with fresh coriander leaves, fried mustard seeds and coconut shreds. A coarser version is khaman and both are popular breakfast and snack foods in Gujurat. But we have to note that Gujart was ruled by chalukyas and Rastrakutas for many centuries before that and Idada may be from iddalige. Since we dont find references to that before that.

Indonesia origin
Acharya notes:the use of rice grits along with urad dhal,the long fermentation of the mix, and the steaming of the batter to fluffiness. Only after 1250 AD are there references to what seem to be idlis as we know them. Achaya’s contention is that this absence from the historical record could mean that idlis are an imported concept — perhaps from Indonesia which has a long tradition of fermented products, like tempeh (fermented soy cakes), kecap (from where we get ketchup) or something called kedli, which Achaya says, is like an idli. This is plausible enough given the many links between Southeast Asia and South India, through rulers and traders. Acharyra also adds many legendary stories ,but there is no basis for them. When we look forward to literary evidences in Indian literature , Acharya does not give any in Indonesia.
Heuan tsang says no steaming vessels south india in seventh century.But steaming vessels are not required for steaming dishes , steam can be produced using cloth over the vessel, still this method is used in south India.

Karnataka origin
Vaddaradhane by Shivakoti Acarya ( Rashtrakoota times)of the 10th century names Iddalige ( Idli ), Holige (Poli) and Savige ( Vermicelli). The 12th century encyclopedia Manasollaasa of Somashekhara Ballala III (Kalyani Chalukya) is a veritable treasure house of recipes and cooking styles. Lets not forget that these were empires with catholic tastes and wide trading hinterlands.

Tulu and kannada dishes
Many old words appearing in the Vaddaradhane,but extint now in modern Kannada, are existing still in Tulu even now.Like "muttukadi","baikam"(Baikampadi) etc. Hale(Old) Kannada and Tulu shared many words. They also should have shared rice dishes like iddli(<-iddalige). We are handicapped by the absence of Tulu texts dating back to 10th C. AD or older ones.Compare this with the numerous leaf based steam cooked Tulu rice dishes similar to iddli in technology.However it is difficult to trace the antiquity of these leaf-wraped precursors of iddlis. Since,leafy vessels are more primitive designs than the more modern iddli cooking vessels, Tulu disheslike moode,gunda,kotte etc., can be said to be actual ancestors of the modern iddlis.

The first appearance of the term in the literature need not mean the origin of the dish around that time, so the origin of this delicious dish has to be karnataka. So Idli is defintely a Karnataka dish.

Origin of Rastrakuta

The Rashtrakuta Dynasty was a royal Indian dynasty ruling large parts of southern, central and northern India between the sixth and the thirteenth centuries. During this period they ruled as several closely related, but individual clans. The earliest known Rashtrakuta inscription is a seventh century copper plate grant that mentions their rule from Manpur in the Malwa region of modern Madhya Pradesh. Other ruling Rashtrakuta clans from the same period mentioned in inscriptions were the kings of Achalapur which is modern Elichpur in Maharashtra and the rulers of Kannauj.

The clan that ruled from Elichpur was a feudatory of the Badami Chalukyas and during the rule of Dantidurga, it overthrew Chalukya Kirtivarman II and went on to build an impressive empire with the Gulbarga region in modern Karnataka as its base. This clan came to be known as the Rashtrakutas of Manyakheta, rising to power in South India in 753. Period between the eight and the tenth centuries, saw a tripartite struggle for the resources of the rich Gangetic plains, each of these three empires annexing the seat of power at Kannauj for short periods of time. At their peak the Rashtrakutas of Manyakheta ruled a vast empire stretching from the Ganga River and Yamuna River doab in the north to Cape Comorin in the south.

During their rule, Jain mathematicians and scholars contributed important works in Kannada and Sanskrit. Amoghavarsha I was the most famous king of this dynasty and wrote Kavirajamarga, a landmark literary work in the Kannada language. The finest examples of which are seen in the Kailasanath Temple at Ellora and the sculptures of Elephanta Caves in modern Maharashtra as well as in the Kashivishvanatha temple and the Jain Narayana temple at Pattadakal in modern Karnataka, all of which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

The origin of Rashtrakuta dynasty has been a controversial topic. These issues pertain to the origins of the earliest ancestors of the Rashtrakutas during the time of Emperor Ashoka in the second century BCE, and the connection between the several Rashtrakuta dynasties that ruled small kingdoms in northern and central India and the Deccan between the sixth and seventh centuries. The relationship of these medieval Rashtrakutas to the most famous later dynasty, the Rashtrakutas of Manyakheta (present day Malkhed in the Gulbarga district, Karnataka state), who ruled between the eighth and tenth centuries has also been debated

Punjab origin
The appearance of the terms Rathika, Ristika (Rashtrika) or Lathika in conjunction with the
terms Kambhoja and Gandhara in some Ashokan inscriptions of 2nd century BCE from Mansera and Shahbazgarhi in North Western Frontier Province (present day Pakisthan), Girnar
(Saurashtra) and Dhavali (Kalinga) and the use of the epithet "Ratta" in many later inscriptions has prompted a claim that the earliest Rashtrakutas were descendants of the Arattas, natives of the Punjab region from the time of Mahabharata who later migrated south and set up kingdoms there, while another theory points more generally to north western regions of India. Based on this theory, the Arattas may have become natives of the Deccan having arrived there during the early centuries of the first millennium. But this is a far fetched theory having no proof.

Maharastra origin
Term Rishtika used together with Petenika in the Ashokan inscriptions implied they were hereditary ruling clans from modern Maharashtra region and the term "Ratta" implied Maharatta ruling families from modern Maharashtra region. But this has been rejected on the basis that from ancient books such as Dipavamsha and Mahavamsha in Pali language it is known the term Maharatta and not Rashtrika has been used to signify hereditary ruling clans from modern Maharashtra region and the terms Rashtrika and Petenika appear to be two different displaced ruling tribes.

Marathi or Telugu origin
The argument that the Rashtrakutas were either Marathi speaking Marathas or Telugu speaking Reddies in origin has been rejected. Reddy's in that time period had not come into martial prominence even in the Telugu speaking regions of Andhra, being largely an agrarian soceity of cultivators who only much later (in the 14th century - 15th century) came to control
regions in the Krishna - Rajamundry districts. The Rashtrakuta period did not produce any Marathi inscriptions or literature (with the exception of a 981 CE Shravanabelagola inscription which some historians argue was inscribed later). Hence Marathi as the language of the Rashtrakutas, it is claimed, is not an acceptable argument

Rajputs
The Rashtrakutas emerged before the term "Rajput" came to be used as a community. The emergence of Rajputs in Rajasthan and Gujarat coincides with the arrival of the Rashtrakutas and Chalukyas in the region. So it is just a coincidence

kannadiga origin
  1. Ruling clans called Rathis and Maharathis were in power in parts of present day Karnataka as well in the early centuries of the Christian era, which is known inscriptions from the region and further proven by the discovery of lead coins from the middle of 3rd century bearing Sadakana Kalalaya Maharathi in the heart of modern Karnataka region near Chitradurga. In the face of these facts it is claimed it can no longer be maintained that the Rathi and Maharathi families were confined only to present day Maharashtra. There is sufficient inscriptional evidence that several Maharathi families were related to Kannadiga families by marriage and they were naga worshippers, a form of worship very popular in the Mysore region.
  2. The epithet Ratta, it is a Kannada word from which the word Rashtrakuta has been derived. The use of the word Rattagudlu (meaning an office) has been found in inscriptions from present day Andhra Pradesh dated prior to the 8th century indicating it was a South Indian word. From the Deoli plates and Karhad records it is clear prince called Ratta and his son was called Rashtrakuta. Thus Rashtrakutas were of Kannada origin. It is also said the term Rashtra means "kingdom" and Kuta means "lofty" or Rashtra means state and Kuta means chieftain.
  3. Another epithet used in inscriptions of Amoghavarsha I was Lattalura Puravaradhiswara. It referes to their original home Lattalur, modern day Latur in Maharashtra state, bordering Karnataka. This area was predominantly Kannada speaking based on surviving vestiges of place names, inscriptions and cultural relics. So Latta is a Prakrit variation of Ratta and hence Rattana-ur became Lattana-ur and finally Lattalur.
  4. Connections between the medieval Rashtrakuta families to the imperial family of Manyakheta, It is clear that only the family members ruling from Elichpur (Berar or modern Amravati district, modern Maharashtra) had names that were very similar to the names of Kings of the Manyakheta dynasty. From the Tivarkhed and Multhai inscriptions it is clear that the kings of this family were Durgaraja, Govindaraja, Svamikaraja and Nannaraja. These names closely resemble the names of Manyakheta kings or their extended family, the name Govindaraja appearing multiple times among the Manyakheta line. These names also appear in the Gujarat line of Rashtrakutas whose family ties
    with the Manyakheta family is well known.
  5. Princes and princesses of the Rashtrakuta family used pure Kannada names such as Kambarasa, Asagavve, Revakka and Abbalabbe as their personal names indicating that they were native Kannadigas. It has been pointed out that princesses of family lineage belonging to Gujarat signed their royal edicts in Kannada even in their Sanskrit inscriptions. Some examples of this are the Navsari and Baroda plates of Karka I and the Baroda plates of his son Dhruva II. It has been attested by a scholar that the Gujarat Rashtrakuta princes signed their inscriptions in the language of their native home and the race they belonged to. It is well known that the Gujarat line of Rashtrakutas were from the same family as the Manyakheta line. It is argued that if the Rashtrakutas were originally a Marathi speaking family, then the Gujarat Rashtrakutas would not have
    signed their inscriptions in Kannada language and that too in far away Gujarat.
  6. While the linguistic leanings of the early Rashtrakutas has caused considerable debate, the history and language of the Rashtrakutas of Manyakheta has been free of such confusion. It is clear from inscriptions, coinage and prolific literature that the court of these
    Rashtrakutas was multi-lingual, used Sanskrit and Kannada as their administrative languages and encouraged literature in Sanskrit and Kannada. As such, from the Kavirajamarga of 9th century, it is known that Kannada was popular from Kaveri
    river up to the Godavari river, an area covering large territory in modern Maharashtra.
  7. The Rashtrakuta inscriptions call them the vanquishers of the Karnatabala, a sobriquet used to refer to the near invincibility of the Chalukyas of Badami. This however it should not be construed to mean that the Rashtrakutas themselves were not Kannadigas. Their patronage and love of the Kannada language is apparent in that most of their inscriptions
    within modern Karnataka are in Kannada, while their inscriptions outside of modern Karnataka tended to be in Sanskrit. An inscription in classical Kannada of King Krishna III has also been found as far away as Jabalpur in modern Madhya Pradesh which further supports the view of their affinity to the language kannada.
So Rastrakutas are kannadiga origin

Case of Sourashtrians

Sourashtrians are mostly silk weavers and silk thread merchants, originated in the Saurashtra region (present day Gujarat, and parts of Maharashtra) in Northern India and later settled in Madurai and surrounding regions of Tamilnadu, few centuries ago.

The origin is certain, and research has proved the current day Sourashtra spoken by us is a modern form of pre-Gujarati spoken thousands of years ago. "

Their home language (Sourashtra language) is still a modern form of the old Saurashtri or Pre-Gujarati as it was over a thousand years ago, which was the language they brought with them through Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra pradesh to Tamilnadu. This language preserves, naturally enough many archaic features of Gujarati and at the same time shows influence of the sister Aryan languages of Konkani and Marathi and of Dravidian Telugu, kannada besides of course Tamil which has now virtually become the second mother tongue of the Sourashtrians...." says Suneetkumar Chatterjee a famous linguist.

But the time period when they migrated from Saurashtra region to south is still uncertain.

Theory 1:
The first theory is that, during the times when the infamous Ghazani Mohammed invaded Northern India from Afghanistan, a few families might have migrated South to escape from the series of invasions.

Theory 2:
Another assumption is a few families that came with the entourage of Shatrapathi Shivaji when he invaded south, might have stayed back to form their own community.

Theory 3:
This is the most popular and widely accepted theory by historians. During the Vijayanagaram Empire rule in Northern India, the Nayakars ruled the South as part of the empire with Madurai as their capital. During that period a few families from the Saurashtra region were called into Madurai to be the "Royal Weavers" for the Nayakars. This would explain very high concentration of Sourashtrians still today around the Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal, the Nayakar's Palace. Since Sourashtrians are Silk Weavers by profession it would also disprove the theory that they came with Shivaji.

Later Sourashtrians settled in Madurai, spread around to Trichy, Salem, Kumbakonam and other surrounding areas as the population grew, but still managed to keep their unique language, and culture intact. Current day Sourashtrians, refer themselves as Tamilians as their identities and still speak Sourashtra at home. An estimated half a million Sourashtrians are living now mostly in Tamilnadu and a few are spread around all over the world.

Lanka prince Sree Vijaya Legends

Sree Vijaya Ancestary
Bengal-Kalinga
According to Mahavamsa sree vijaya belonged to Vanga(Bengal) and Kalinga(orissa), subsequently got exiled from there because of the evil ways and landed in Tambapanni(ancient Lanka). Nissanka Malla's inscriptions mention Simhapura as the capital of Kalinga.

Gujarat-Konkan
The arena associated with the legend of Vijaya and his followers may be in Sihapura (Simhapura), in the Lala Rattha (Lata Rashtra) either latur area in present day konkan or one more in Gujarat.

sindh-Punjab
There is an epic reference to one Simhapura kingdom located on the upper Indus which shared borders with Ursa, Abhisara, Bhlika, Darda and Kamboja. Seventh century Chinese pilgirm Hiun tsang also refers to this Simhapura (Sang-ho-pu-lo) and localises it on upper Indus, in Gandhara (north--west Punjab).

So there is a substantial points of view of ancestary of Sri vijaya.