What Is India News Service
Mondya, April 22, 2013

The Indian Analyst


North Indian Inscriptions



[Vikrama] Year 1190

THIS inscription was brought to notice by Nilakantha Janardana Kirtane who transcribed and translated it in his article “On three Inscriptions from Mālwā”, all published with facsimiles thereof in the Indian Antiquary, Vol. VI, pp. 46 ff. In his introduction to the article, Kirtane observed that the present record is engraved “on a slablet into the wall of a newly built temple at Iṅgnōdā a large village included in the territories of the junior branch of the Dēwās State in Central India.”[1] Some time subsequently, the slab was removed to Dēwās, the chief town of the (former) State, and was deposited there in the local Victoria High School.[2] The historical importance of the record is often discussed,[3] but it remained to be systematically edited. In my recent visit to Dēwās, in order to study the document from the original stone, I found that the slab is now missing ; nor could I succeed in tracing it at Riṅgnōd where it was originally found. Under the circumstances, the record is edited here from a photograph which I owe to the kindness of the Chief Epigraphist.[4]

   In his article Kirtane has stated that the stone on which the record is engraved measured about 20” by 14”, which are respectively equivalent to 50∙80 cms. and 35∙56 cms. The inscription consists of fifteen lines of writing which is carefully engraved and is well preserved. The last line is a little smaller in length than the others.

   The characters belong to the Nāgarī alphabet of the twelfth century. The initial i which occurs thrice in ll. 1, 5 and 7, shows in the latter two examples its old form consisting of two circles horizontally placed and subscribed by the medial short u, but an advanced form in the first. T and n are occasionally alike as in dattāni, l. 10 and punar = ādadīta, l. 11 ; th is formed of two hollow circles placed vertically ; see -pathakē, l. 7 ; the fore-limb of dh has a horn above for which see vasudhā, l. 11, where the verticals of dhā are joined by a horizontal stroke. The consonant k as the first member of a conjunct, loses its loop, as in pakshē and dakshiṇa-, both in l. 7 ; and lastly, the form of bh in bhartṛi- in l. 2 is different from that as appearing in the other instances.

   The language of the record is Sanskrit ; and except for the five imprecatory verses in ll. 10-14, it is all in prose. The orthographical peculiarities that call for notice are (1) the use of the sign for v to denote b, as well, e.g., in vrahma-, l. 5 ; (2) writing the dental for the palatal sibilant about half-a-dozen times, as in Sivāya, l. 1 and Āsādhara-, l. 14 ; (3) the reduplication of a class-consonant, e.g., in samabhyarchchya, l. 4 ; (4) the general use of an anusvāra for a class-nasal even at the end of a hemistich and even before a vowel, though wrongly ; cf. phalaṁ and vasuṁdharāṁ, both in l. 12, and samētaṁ udaka- l. 8. In addition to these, the medial dipthongs are indicated both by the pṛishṭha- and the ūrdhva-mātrās ; the dental and the labial nasal are wrongly changed to an anusvāra, e.g., in mahāṁ, l. 5 and -samētaṁ, l. 8 respectively ; wrong spellings and grammatical errors are also to be seen, e.g., in parīvāra and svāmiḥ, both in l. 5, yasaḥkara-, in l. 11 and bhūmī and svadatāṁ, both in l. 12. The local element is to noticed in the name Lashamaṇa, and in those in l. 6 and in the end, which are all indicated without the vibrakti. And lastly, the kāka-pada sign is used at the end of ll. 2, 5, 8 and 13, and a daṇḍa in ll. 6 and 12, to show that the word is completed in the next line.

[1] Op. cit., p. 49. The village is known also as Riṅgnōdā, Ignōdā, Ignōda, etc.
[2] Central India Gazetters, Western States (1907), Vol. V. Pt. A, pp. 74 and 78. The School is now known as the Nārāyaṇa Vidyā Mandira.
[3] For example, in D. R. Bhandarkar’s List of Inscrs., No. 229 ; and D. C. Ganguly, H.P.D., p. 165.
[4] No. C-2045 of 1964-65. Negative No. 5814.

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