ancient

Chura Plates of Vijaya-Vishnugopavarman.

Inscription number 29.
Chura Plates of Vijaya-Vishnugopavarman.
Pallava history can be studied in two parts:-
1. Early history of Pallavas
2. Successors of Simhavishnu.
Study of the early history of Pallavas is purely based upon these inscriptions especially copper-plate grants of the  kings. This chura grant supplies us following genealogy.
Skandavarman – Vishnugopavarman-Simhavarman-Vijaya-Vishnugopavarman


Most of these records of the Pallavas were issued from Kanchi as Kanchi must be the headquarters of the dynasty. However Pallavas had lost Kanchi, once, probably during the fight between the Gupta king Samudragupta and the Pallava king Vishnugopa. Pallavas again captured Kanchi, probably defeating the Cholas, who took over this when Vishnugopa was busy with Samudragupta.
The first ruler of this dynasty was Skandavarman, who is also referred as Yuvaraja, in these inscriptions.
He assumed the title of Dharma Maharaja as he had performed Asvamedha and various other Vedic sacrifices.  We get very meager information in these charters, however it is possible to  get information relating to the administrative and social aspects of Pallava kingdom. We hear of Yuvarajas evidently crown princes who perhaps participated in government and issued the charters. The kings wore titles like Bhattaraka. Gift of tax-free lands to Brahmins, was an important act of charity by the kings. Political & administrative system of pallava dynasty, was inherited from Satavahana dynasty. Pallavas followed sanatna dharma and were worshippers of Siva & Vishnu and always performed Vedic sacrifices.
The Pallavas from Simhavarman of the sixth century AD to Kampavarman of the early tenth century were the most important power in south india, for a period of atleast five centuries.
Provenance: Uncertain. Probably Daggupadu Village Narasarsaopet
taluk, Guntur district, Andhra Pradesh.
Script: Brahmi of the Southern class of 7th century AD.
Language: Sanskrit, with a few Telugu expressions.
References: C.R. Krishnamacharlu, Ep.Ind.. XXIV, pp.137-43.
Footnote 1.
The characters reveal a great affinity with those of the Kondanaguru grant of the Eastern Chalukya Indravarman.
(Ep.Ind, XVIII, No.1 and Plate opp pp.2) and Ipuru plates of Vishauvardhana 3, (ibid., No.6 and Plare opp.  pp.60).
Hence the present copy of the grant is assignable to the early part of the 7th century A.D. The original charter
must have been lost during the intrusion into the Karma-rashtra of the Eastern chalukya Kubja-Vishnuvardhana in early 7th century, necessitating the issue of fresh copies of the grants of this king and his father Simha-varman
(e.g. Omgodu grant).
From the facsimile in Ep.Ind., XXIV, between pp.142 and 143.
Second Plate First Side.
Footnote 2.
Maharaja Vishnugopavarman is identical with Yuva-maharaja vishnugopavarman mentioned in the Mangadur Pikira (Supra, IV, 27, L.10) and  Uruvapalli and Omgodu (Supra, IV, 26, L.12) grants issued by simhavarman. The supposition of Hultzsch (Ep,Ind.. VIII, pp.160) that he never came to the throne has to be
rejected on the evidence of the present grant. We have definite evidence to show that he ruled for 25 years
under the royal nane or title Vijayasiddhi (See Ep.Ind., XVIII, pp. 55 ff.)
Footnote 3.
Second plate second side.
1. He may be designated as VishnugopaI 2, of the Pallava dynasty.
2. The Telugu expression Muyuru-Kutuva, is the meeting
place of three villages. Melitapah is a stepped platform or stacking ploughs (meli means modern medi).
Footnote 4.
Third plate First side.
1. The villages Lagubamru, Paguhuru and Nagolami may be identified respectively with the modern villages
Daggupadu, Pavuluru and Nagalla, all in the Bapatla, Guntur district. The gift-village Chura would, therefore, be the deserted village shown in the New Atlas sheets between Nagalla and Daggupadu. In other sheets it is shown as suravaripalem. Karma rashtra is referred to in the Eastern chalukya
inscriptions. Earlier in the Jaggayyapeta Prakrit inscriptions of the Ikshvaku king Siri-virapurishadatta,
(Luders List Nos. 1202 to 1204 Hutzsch, Ep.Ind., IX, pp.50) It is called Kammaka-Ratha.
In later epigraphs it was known as the Kamma_nandu.
2. Muditi-talakah is an ancient (mudi) tank.
Footnote 5.
1. Dvedaya and Vveđai appear to be corrupt, but rudha (rooted in tradition) forms of Sanskrit Dviveda.
The village name Dvedaigoma-puram occurs in the Tandantottam plates of Vijaya-Nandivikramavarman (S.I.I,. II, pp. 519 and 532 and in chola inscriptions (Ibid, pp.259 ff and Ep.Ind.. XXII, pp.54)
2. अ of  अस्य has been combined in sandhi with ति at the end of the last hemistitch.
Footnote 6.
1. Palatkata may either be identical with the modern village of Peda-Palakaluru in the Guntur district, as suggested by Dubreuil, or with Palukuru in the Kandukur taluk of the Nellore district as suggested by Krishmacharlu,
Pallakada-sthana, from where uruarupalli plates of simhavarman were issued, may also be the same as
Palatkata (see Ind.Ant, V, pp.51).
English Translation of the inscription.
Victorious is the Lord. Hail ! From the illustrious and victorious seat of Palatkata the devout worshipper of
Bhagavat, the pious king the illustrious Vijaya-Vishnugopavarman of Bharadvaja gotra, (and) of (the family of the Pallavas, the performer of many asvamedha sacrifices and the abodes
of good fortune who (vijayavishnu gopavarman) was ever initiated into the vows of sacrifices, which were honoured with the pious thoughts of devotion to the Lord (bhagavat) and
were the producers of all the blessings who is luminous with fame from victories won in sudden encounters in many battles, who is ever engaged in rescuing Dharma, sunk by the evils of
Kaliyuga, who possesses the virtues of kingly sage, who meditates on the feet of the Lord Vishnu), who is devoted to
the feet of his majestic father, (and) who is the son of the illustrious Maharaja Simhavarman,who was true in spirit, who was promoter of prosperity of the gods (i.e. temples), the
Brahmanas, the teachers and the seniors, who was excessively courteous, who had increased his store of piety by gifts of many cows. gold and land etc. who was adept at nursing his subjects (and) who was fifth (i.e. additional) among the Lokapalass, who (Vijaya-vlshnugopavarman) was the grandson of the illustrious Maharaja Vishnugopavarman, who was the
unique hero on the surface of the earth, and who was rich in accomplishments, who Vijaya-Vishnugopavarman) was the great grand son of the illustrious Maharaja Skandavarman, who was
greatly devoted to the Vedas (or the Brahmanas), who was the repository of brilliant khatriya power earned by his own arms, who had established all the ethical standards according to the
law, who was stead fast in the path of duty, (sthiti-sthitasya.)
whose spirit was boundless, who had subdued the circle of Kings with his valour, commands the villagers, all the
administrators on local duty, the mobile Officers (sancharan-takan) and the royal superintendents in the village named chura, in the province of Karma.
To the west of this village is the village named  Lagubamru. Its (i.e. of the donated village chura) eastern
boundary is the eastern tank, touching in the east, the great highway to Iradi. To the south is the platorm or stacking
ploughs on the meeting place of three villages, admixed with
( svarita) (i.e. touching) the boundary of the village Paguharu.
To the west is the boundary of the village Nagolami. The northern boundary is the northern tank towards the north, Thus measured upto the four limits is an area (or farm of one
hundred and eight nivarttanas. In the sane village, is a piece of land, situated on a house-site, towards the south
and) approaching the middle of the village and the central banyan tree, and to the south of the ancient tank situated in an enclosure (vatika-sthana) (measuring) one nivarttana.
These have been granted with the libation of water, on account
the summer solstice, to chesamisarman of Kasyapa gotra, who
is well-versed in the four Vedas, is a resident of Kundur, (and)
who is the grandson of vishnusarman, and the son of vriddhasarman,
a scholar two Vedas. These have been given to him for the increase of longevity, power and victory with all the immunities, according to the law of gifts to the Brahmanas. The sinner, who
transgresses this charter of ours, will deserve corporal punishment. And in this context these are also verses spoken by a Rishi.
(Here follow three of the customary verses.)

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