No. 42─ KAUVATAL PLATES OF SUDEVA, YEAR 7
A. N. LAHIRI, OOTACAMUND
These copper plates were received from Pandit Lochan Prasad Pandeya, Secretary, Mahakosal Historical Society, Raigarh, who seems to have secured them from a gentleman residing
at Kauvatal in the old Sarangarh State.
The set consists of three rectangular plates, each measuring about 7·4″ X 4·2″. They are
strung together on a circular copper ring, the thickness and diameter of which are ·6″ and 3·375″
respectively. The ring passes through a square hole bored in the middle of the left margin at a
distance of about 1·5″ from the left edge. The square hole measures ·5″ on one of its sides. The
inner side of the first plate and both sides of the remaining two plates contain writing. There are
altogether 25 lines. Each of the first four inscribed faces of the plates has six lines of writing,
while the fifth has only one line. The seal soldered to the ring is 3″ in diameter. It has a circular
border and is divided in almost equal halves by two straight lines. In the upper half Lakshmī
stands facing front on a lotus with her right hand bent upwards and the left hand hanging downwards ; on her two sides are two elephants pouring water over her ; and in the left and right fields
are a chakra and a śaṅkha respectively. In the lower half is the legend in two lines, below which
there is the representation of what looks like a pūrṇa-kumbha. The three plates weigh 75 tolas,
while the seal together with its ring weighs 25 tolas.
The characters are of the box-headed variety of what Fleet calls the ‘Central India Alphabet’. The average size of the letters is about ·3″. Medial ī is denoted by a dot in the middle of
the base of the circle denoting i as in the Thakurdiya plates of Mahā-Pravararāja. The final form
of t occurs in lines 18 and 20 and the jihvāmūlīya in line 18. The numerical signs for 7 and 10
occur in line 24. Of orthographical interest is the spelling of words like sāmaṁnta for sāmanta,
tṛidaśa for tridaśa, tāmbra for tāmra, siṅgha for siṁha, etc. Consonants are generally doubled in
conjunction with r, although there are a few exceptions.
This is one of the six known records of Mahā-Sudēvarāja (i.e. Sudēva-mahārāja) of the Śarabhapura family and bears the date : year 7, Mārgaśīrsha-di 10. The charter was issued from
Śrīpura. The object of the record is to grant the village of Sunikā situated in Hakirī-bhōga
to Bhaṭṭa Purandarasvāmin of the Pārāśara gōtra and Vājasanēya śākhā. The wordings of the
grant are almost identical with those of the other records of Sudēva. The name of the gift village
and that of the division in which it was situated are written on an erasure in line 4 while the name
of the donee’s gōtra in line 9 and the latter part of his own name in line 10 are similarly written
on erasures. This may be due to the scribe who had at first committed an error but later noticed
and corrected it.
 [The inscribed faces of the plates and the seal attached to the record have been illustrated in the Annual
Report on Indian Epigraphy, 1945-46, Plate facing p. 12.─ Ed.]
 The inscription was first noticed by Pandit Pandeya in IHQ, 1945, pp. 294-95, and discussed by Dr. D. C.
Sircar in the same journal, 1946, pp. 62-63. They were also noticed in Ancient India, No. 5 p. 49, and in A.R.Ep.,
1945-46, p. 12, No. 53 of App. A, and Plate.
 CII, Vol. III, pp. 18-19.
 Above, Vol. XXII, Plates between pp. and 23.
 The five published records are : (1) Khariar plates, year 2 (above, Vol. IX, pp. 170 ff.) ; (2) Sarangarh plates
(ibid., pp. 281 ff.), (3) Arang plates, year 7 (ibid., Vol. XXIII, pp. 22 ff.), (4) Sirpur plates, year 7 (ibid., Vol.
XXXI, pp. 103 ff.); and (5) Raipur plates, year 10 (CII, Vol. III, pp. 197 ff.).