What Is India News Service
Monday, January 9, 2012


South Indian Inscriptions






List of Plates





The Discovery of the Vakatakas

Vakataka Chronology

The Home of The Vakatakas

Early Rulers

The Main Branch

The Vatsagulma Branch





Architecture, Sculpture and Painting

Texts And Translations  

Inscriptions of The Main Branch

Inscriptions of The Feudatories of The Main Branch

Inscriptions of The Vatsagulma Branch

Inscriptions of The Ministers And Feudatories of The Vatsagulma Branch


Other South-Indian Inscriptions 

Volume I

Volume II

Volume III

Vol. IV - VIII

Volume IX

Volume X

Volume XI

Volume XII

Volume XIII

Volume XIV

Volume XV

Volume XVI

Volume XVII

Volume XVIII

Volume XIX

Volume XX

Volume XXII_Part I

Volume XXII_Part II



Volume XXIII

Volume XXIV

Archaeological Links

Archaeological-Survey of India




...THE Vākāṭakas were one of the most glorious dynasties that flourished in South India in ancient times. Their empire at one time extended from Mālwā and Gujarāt in the north to the Tuṅgabhadrā in the south and from the Arabian Sea in the west to the Bay of Bengal in the east. They were great patrons of literature. The liberal patronage they gave to Sanskrit and Prakrit poets soon brought the Vaidarbhī and Vachchhōmī rītis into prominence and induced great poets like Kālidāsa to adopt them for their works. They themselves composed kāvyas and subhāshitas which have evoked praise from famous poets and rhetoricians like Bāṇa and Daṇḍin, Kuntaka and Hēmachandra. The temples they erected are no longer in existence, but the sculptures found in their ruins have attracted the notice of art-critics, who rank them among the best specimens of ancient times. The magnificent vihāra and chaitya caves which their ministers and feudatories excavated out of solid rock at Ajaṇṭā and Gulwāḍā still excite the admiration of the world. In view of these achievements there is hardly any exaggeration in the following observation1 of Prof. J. Dubreuil : “Of all the dynasties of the Deccan that have reigned from the third to the sixth century, the most glorious, the most important, the one that must be given the place of honour, the one that has excelled all others, the one that has had the greatest influence on the civilization of the whole of the Deccan is unquestionably the illustrious dynasty of the Vākāṭakas” .

...Still, the existence and even the name of this illustrious dynasty had passed into oblivion and became known only when the Siwanī copper-plate grant2 of Pravarasēna II was discovered in Madhya Pradesh in 1836. Vindhyaśakti, the founder of this dynasty, was indeed mentioned in the Purāṇas, but partly owing to bad readings and partly due to misconstruction, he was believed to have belonged to the Yavana or Greek race. Even after deciphering the inscription in Ajaṇṭā Cave XVI which gives the royal genealogy from the earliest time to the last Vākāṭaka king Harishēṇa, Dr. Bhau Daji remarked in 1862 that ‘the Vākāṭakas were a dynasty of the Yavanas or Greeks who took the lead in the performance of Vedic sacrifices as well as in the execution of most substantial and costly works for the encouragement of Buddhism3 ‘. It has since been pointed out that Vindhyaśakti, the founder of the dynasty, is described in that inscription as a dvija, which usually means a Brāhmaṇa. The gōtra Vishṇuvṛiddha of the Vākāṭakas is also mentioned in almost all their copper-plate grants. It is now generally accepted that like the Sātavāhanas, the Vākāṭakas also were a Brāhmaṇa family that rose into prominence in the early centuries of the Christian era.

...The period during which the Vākāṭakas flourished had long been uncertain. Unlike the Guptas, they did not start any era, but dated all their grants in regnal years, Their age had therefore to be conjectured from the characters of their inscriptions.

1 Dubreuil, Ancient History of the Deccan, p. 71.
2 J.A.S.B., Vol. V (1836), pp. 726, f.
3 J.B.B.R.A.S., Vol. VII, pp. 69 f.

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