Sunday, January 15, 2006


Deccan and South India 235 B.C - 850 A.D - Part 1

Satavahanas of Deccan: While North India was reeling under turmoil after the fall of Mauryas, there emerged a powerful kingdom in Deccan(covering Maharastra and Andhra). During the Mauryan empire, they were part of the empire. But after the fall of Mauryan empire they declared themselves free. Founder of this dynasty was Simuka(235-213 B.C) and was succeded by his brother Krishna.

Sources mentioning this period:

Aiteraya Brahmana

Greek Writer pliny mentions about Andhras.

Notable rulers of Satavahanas

Satakarni: satakarni seems to made extensive conquests and performed two Ashwamedhayajanas. It appears he conquered western Malwa, Vidharba and Anupa. He is also referred to as Lord of Dakshinapatha. His name also appears on one of the gateways of Sanchi stup.It's well known that he had made substantial donations for renovation of Sanchi stupa and other monastries.

Satakarni II: Satakarni II seems to have ruled for 56 years. He wrested Malwa from the Sungas. After Satakarni II, Satavahanas received a set back and Nahapana seems to have conquered Satavahana territory.A large number of Nahapana coins have been found in Nasik area.

Gautamiputra Satakarni: Satavahanas became powerful again during the reign of Gautamiputra Satakarni. He overthrew Nahapana and restructered large number of his silver coins.He also recovered Northern Maharastra, Vidharbaha, Malwa, Konkan from the Sakas. Satakarni dedicated a cave in Nasik and granted land to ascetics. Gautamiputra was the first king bearing the matronym and was followed by all his successors.

His achievements are engraved in an inscription of Queen Mother, Gautami Balasara in Nasik.

Vasisthiputra Sri Pulmavi: Gautamiputra was succeded by Sri Pulmavi in 120 A.D. The coins and inscriptions of Pulmavi have been found Andhra and this means that Andhra was part of the Satavahan Empire in the second century A.D. In order to evade the on-slaught of Sakas, Pulmavi married the daughter of Sri Rudradaman. But Rudradaman defeated the next Satvahana ruler twice and seized Konkan and Anupa.

Sri Yajna Satakarni: Sri Yajna Satakarni was the last greatest ruler of the Satavahanas, his inscriptions have been found in Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Maharastra. He ruled over a large kingdom extending from Bay of Bengal to Arabian sea, thus re-conquered the lands which were conquered from his predecessors. Maritime trade and activities during his reign were indicated from the coins, depicting Fish and conch.

The succesors of Yajna were unworthy to rule and Satavahana dynasty dis-integrated.

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