Chintaman Vinayak Vaidya.

History of mediæval Hindu India (being a history of India from 600 to 1200 A.D.) .. (Volume 1) online

. (page 23 of 38)
Online LibraryChintaman Vinayak VaidyaHistory of mediæval Hindu India (being a history of India from 600 to 1200 A.D.) .. (Volume 1) → online text (page 23 of 38)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


relations with the Kashmir royal families. Where these states Avers
situate we cannot clearly determine.

The sorrounding independent states wereGurjara in the south, Shahi
or Kabul in the west. Turushkain the nor.h and the Darada in the east.
The Daradas (also sometimes spelt Darad) seem to have had constant
■conflicts with the Kashmiris.

Kashmir was always famous for its learned men and the kings
usually were patrons of learning. King Harsha was a great pandit
himself; so also JayapTda. The settlements of: Brahmins were
numerous and had Agraharas or inam villages assigned to them.
These were in fact learned Universities well endowed by kings. The
Xashmir pandits were famous throughout India. Their names have ^
peculiar turnworthy to be mentioned. They always ended in =ST?frMdl'+"|(j[ ( Epi. Ind. VIII p. 190.)



244 THE FIRST HINDU KINGDOMS

described in the Puranas and the Mahabharata. We have-
quoted Bana's evidence on this point also. "Show me if
you find such a resplendent kinp: (like Harsha) in your
vaunted solar and lunar lines." It is clear, therefore, that
the belief that certain families of Kshatriyas were solar
and certain others lunar in decent is as •)ld as Bana and
Harsha of 620 A. D. It is on the other hand impt)ssible to
believe that foreigners or mlechhas who came to India
about 500 A. D. could have, within a hundred years, so
palmed themselves off upon the people as to be looked
upon as the best Kshatriyas in India. Powerful kings in
India like Pratapavardhana and others were very careful to>
prevent mixture of Varnas and such an event was therefore,
impossible. They might have succeeded in getting into
Kshatriya fold with Kshatriya names. But as Hindu so-
ciety always did, they would be looked upon as one more
branch of Vratya Kshatriyas added to the hundred and one-
Kshatriya sub-castes guarded by marriage restriction.

Nor does the history of Valabhi kings as given by tra-
dition seem inconsistent with the natural course of events
and require a conque.st by fcjreigners. Their tradition is
that one Kanakasena of the solar family from Ayodhya
came first to Lohak.)t which need not be Lahore, and from
thence to Birnagar in Saurastra. There he took posses-
sion of it from a local prince in A. D. 144, Four genera-
tions later, Vijayasena founded Vijayapur (now Dholka)
and subsequently the family founded Valabhipur (Todd).
Now this tradition does not contradict known history or
the inscriptions. Kshatriya adventurers were always ready
to go where they could found a kingdom and Kanakasena
might have found opportunity to become a Thakur under
the Saka kings of Kathiawar of A. D. 144. Later on when
the Guptas conquered the country the Senas might have
been the sub-lords of the Guptas. Now Bhatarka is styled
Senapati in early copperplates. He was probably a gene-
ral of the Gupta forces in Saurashtra and must have fought
their battles witli invaders either in Saurashtra or in the
Panjab and elsewhere. When the Gupta empire fell, he



THE MAITRAKAS OF VALABHI 245

must have become independent in his own small state of
Valabhi, still preserving the title Henapati as one of
honour- Such things have constantly happened in Indian
history from the most ancient times to the modern. When
empires fall, the governors of provinces become indepen-
dent and still preserve their former titles of honour.witness
the Vazier of Oudh or the Nizam of the Deccan. These
titles are of those offices which they actually filled under
the Moghals, and when they became independent they still
kept them as honourable ones. This will suffice to explain
the title Senapati, and others taken by Bhatarka of the
Maitraka family. (The word Maitrakanam had wrongly
been interpreted previously as applying to his enemies. It
has been rightly now explained as belonging to Bhatarka;
but it is indicative of his family and as we have shown
above it does not make him a meher. ) The epithet st^^tR-
Jfk^';JcT^'^-=f^rcFRT^^^'ft shows that Bhatarka was born in a
kingly family and had many TCshatriya followers who were
servants of the state for many generations. This proves
that it was not Bhatarka who first rose to royal dignity.*

Having thus dispelled the clouds that have gathered
about Bhatarka's family and race, we proceed to sketch
in short the history of the family onwards which
can be gathered from the inscriptions in a continuous
stream down to about the middle of the 8th century. This
history is undisputed and we copy it from the Bombay

* It is curious to nole th'at this theory of ours turns out to be not a new one and tha*
it was propounded years ago by Major Watson and accepted by Cunningham. It seems
that it has been left out in later histories in conscQuence of the new theory started
that the Valabhi kings were Gujars by race This is what Cunningham writes in Arch
S. R. Vol. XIX Central Provinces p. 28 "1 am willing to accept Major Watson's traditonal
account that he (Senapati Bhat^rta) was the governor of Surashtra under Skandagupta
As his son Dharasena takes only the same siirple title I conclude he remained tributary
to Budhagupta. His second son however not only bears the title Maharaja but records
that he was installed by the king of the whole world. As I have pointed out, this was
probably the last act of supreme soyereignty performed by Budhagupta" " The coins
.■which I now notice also confirm the same state of things. No. 23 Rev. Legend in
modified Gupta character " MahSrSjno Mahikshatra parama Samanta Maha Sri Bhatta-
rakasa" One of Mr Newtons coins and several of myjown read " Rajno Mahakshatra,
ParamSditya Rajno Samanta Mahasri Ehattarakasa, No. 24 Rev. Legend in modified
GUPta character "MahSrajno, Mahakshatra Samanta Mahesha Paramaditya Dhara
senasa" The word Mahakshatra on these coins distinctly proves that theee Senas prided
rthemselves on being true Ksbatriyas,



246 THE FIRST HINDU KINGDOMS

Gazetteer Gujarat Volume. It may be added that the Valabhi
copperplate grants use invariably the Gupta era, so much
so, that it has come to be called also the Valabhi era (see-
Alberuni ). They were originally subjects of the Guptas
or they use this era because it was then prevalent in
Saurashtra. Secondly the seal of all these grants is the
same, viz. a bull with the legend under it Sri Bhatarka
( in Prakrit ) showing that the family never lost its respect
for its founder Bhatarka.

No copperplate comes from his time but we have one
from his son Dhruvasena. Bhatarka is therein styled
Senapati. He had four sons who seem to have succes-
sively ruled viz. 1 Dharasena. 2*Dronasinha 3 Dhruvasena
and 5 Dharapatta. Dharasena is called Senapati like his
father, and Dronasinha is styled Maharaja '" invested with
royal authority by the great Lord of the whole world. "
The Gazetteer looks upon this as ambiguous but this is plain
enough as it shows that the kingship was formally acknow-
ledged by the declining Gupta Emperors, The Valabhi
family appears during the first reigns to have also recog.
nised the Guptas as their overlords, and when that line
was extinct then only they styled themselves Maharajadhi-
raja. They till then also took the title of Mahasamanta
as Dhruvasena's grants still declare. Dharasena probably
ruled from 526 A. D. to 535 A. D. His two brothers ruled
before him and probably Dharapatta younger brother ruled
after him. Guhasena a son of the last, ( 539-569 A. D. )
has left three copperplate grants and an inscription. He
seems to have become the first independent sovereign and
later grants mention his name first after Bhatarka Indeed
we find the last Gupta Emperor Kumaragupta II ruled
about 535 A. D. V. S. E. H. p. 312. Guhasena is also called
Gohila and according to Rajput fashion his descendents in



Online LibraryChintaman Vinayak VaidyaHistory of mediæval Hindu India (being a history of India from 600 to 1200 A.D.) .. (Volume 1) → online text (page 23 of 38)