No. 17─AJAYAGARH ROCK INSCRIPTION OF CHANDELLA KIRTTIVARMAN
SANT LAL KATARE, NAGPUR
The inscription belongs to the reign of the Chandēlla king Kīrttivarman. It is inscribed on
a rock above a group of female images lying below the upper gate of the fort of Ajayagarh, which
was also called Jayapura. It is noticed by Cunningham in his Archaeological Survey Report,
wherein he says that the inscription consists of four lines and contains the name of king Kīrttivarman in the fourth line. It is again noticed by Dr. N. P. Chakravarti in the Annual Report
of the Archaeological Survey of India for the year 1935-36, p. 92, where its contents are briefly
summarised. It is edited here from an ink-impression kindly sent to me, at my request, by Mr.
N. Lakshminarayan Rao, Government Epigraphist for India. The famous fort of Ajayagarh
lies about 16 miles north-east of Kālañjara as the crow flies. It has yielded a number of inscriptions of the time of the Chandēlla kings, who had their capital at Kālañjara. It served as their capital
and it seems, whenever Kālañjara was occupied by the Muslims, the Chandēlla kings took refuge
at Ajayagarh from where they pursued their fight against the invaders to recapture their capital.
The inscription, which has in all four lines of writing, occupies a space 3·5½″ wide and 4′ long
on the rock. The characters are Nāgarī of the end of the 11th and beginning of the 12th century A. D. The pṛishṭhamātrā has been used for medial ē, but the mātrā for ō is indicated either
by an ūrdhva and an agra mātrā, as in Kālañjarō in line 1, or by a pṛishṭha and an agra mātrā, as in
nāmadhēyō in line 2. In the case of the mātrās for ai and au, no uniform system has been followed.
The consonant following r is usually doubled. The forms of ē and p in ēkātapatram in line 3 and
y in mānyō in line 2 are similar.
The mistakes in the text which appear to have crept in because of the carelessness of the scribe
have been corrected either in the text or in foot-notes. The inscription ends abruptly and though
the closing mark of the double daṇḍa is inserted at the end, the last verse remains incomplete.
The language of the inscription is Sanskrit and, except the invocation to Chaṇḍikā, it is
in verse. There are in all eight verses of which the first two are in the Vasantatilakā metre and
the remaining in Upajāti.
 Above, Vol. I, p. 325.
 Vol. XXI, p. 54.