No. 4─THREE PARAMARA INSCRIPTIONS FROM MALWA
K. N. SASTRI, NEW DELHI
Of the three inscriptions under review, the first is from the Mahākālēśvara temple at Ujjain,
the second is on a stone pillar in the Bhōjaśālā (now Kamālmaulā Mosque) at Dhār while the
third lies in a shrine at Un in Madhya Bharat. Their common characteristic is that each of them
contains an alphabetical-cum-grammatical chart (bandha) and a verse alluding to the Varṇa-nāga-kṛipāṇikā-bandha of the king Udayāditya.
A. Mahākālēśvara Temple Inscription
This inscription is a praśasti, the object of which presumably was to record either the construction or the restoration of a Śiva temple at Ujjain. It survives in two fragments. One of
them bears 36 closely written lines engraved on a stone slab built in a niche in the upper storey
of the Mahākālēśvara temple. The other fragment comprises 28 lines of text and an alphabetical
chart which are inscribed on a stone slab now fixed in a small chhatrī in the same temple
on the ground floor. Though it is difficult to be absolutely certain about their relationship, yet
their mutual resemblance in style and subject matter tends to support the view that the two fragments were parts of one and the same inscription.
The first fragment is 17″ broad by 21½″ high and appears to be badly worn off on the surface.
The writing on the second fragment, excluding the chart, measures 14″ broad and 17″ high and is
in a far better state of preservation and quite distinct, though, here too, some letters are missing
due to the peeling off of the surface. The characters are beautifully executed and belong to the
so-called Kuṭila type of the Nāgarī script current in Northern and Western India in the 10th and
11th centuries A. D. They closely resemble those of the Khajuraho inscription of V. S. 1011
and the Udaypur praśasti. The language is Sanskrit. Barring the alphabetical chart (bandha),
the rest of the extant portion of the inscription is in verse. B is denoted by the sign for v, and the
palatal sibilant by its dental counterpart in some cases.
The composer of this praśasti was well-versed in rhetorics and possessed a fine imagination.
The first fragment contains nineteen verses of which the first sixteen are devoted to the eulogy of
Śiva and the description of the Arbuda mountain. This is followed by an allusion to the sacrificial
offering of the sage Vasishṭha whose cow, Surabhi, was snatched away by Viśvāmitra. Herein
the poet displays his mastery in the use of allegories, similes and other poetic embellishments which
go to make a good kāvya. Owing to an unfortunate gap between verses 19 and 79, the text dealing
with the origin of the Paramāra family and the genealogy of its members appears to have been
lost. This may be inferred from the occurrence of similar passages in the Paramāra praśastis in
other inscriptions, such as the Udaypur praśasti referred to above. The genealogical account
might have been brought down to Naravarman, the donor of the present record.
 The estampages of the epigraphs were kindly supplied to me by the Government Epigraphist for India,
 These inscriptions have been briefly noticed by Mr. K. K. Lele in the Paramāras of Dhar and Malwa, pp.
29-30 ; see also Annual Report of the Archaeological Survey, Western Circle, 1912-13, pp. 21 and 55, Nos. 2598 and
2599 (Mahākālēśvara temple inscription) ; 1904-05, p. 8, No. 2081, and 1912-13, pp. 21 and 55, No. 2601 (Dhār
inscription) ; 1919-20, p. 25, No. 3011 (Un inscription). Mr. Lele attributes the composition of the epigraphs to
the Paramāra king Naravarman.
 [It is likely that the two fragments form the beginning and end of two different inscriptions.─ Ed.]
 Above, Vol. I, Plate facing p. 124.
 Ibid., Plate facing p. 234.