Guhasena’s Inscription number 70

Written by Alok Mohan on September 8, 2022. Posted in Uncategorized

Maharaja Guhasena was a brave king. He was proficient in archery. He was also widely known for his charity work as he was very liberal in donations.
He was a noble ruler and an excellent administrator.
A grant of land was issued by Maitraka Maharaja Guhasena in the ( Valabhi) year 246, 564 A.D. The land was donated to the Samgha ( Congregation ) of the Buddhist bhiksus at Dudda-Mahavihara erected by Dudda in the locality of Valabhi; and it consisted of four villages_ Samipadravataka in the vicinity of Anumanji and Pippalarunkhari, Sangamanaka in Mandali Dranga and Naddiya and Chossari in Khetaka Ahara. The grant was composed by Skandabhata, the Officer in charge of Sandhi. Some copper-plate inscription praising the proficiency of King Guhasena of Valabhi were also discovered. A fragmentary stone-inscription discovered at the village Bankodi in the Raval District of the former Navanagar State, also records the name of Guhasena; and it is assigned on paleographic grounds, to this Maitraka king.

The inscriptions represent king Guhasena as a Parama-Upasaka (great devotee)

Inscription Number 70.
Wala Copper-plate of Guhasena-(Gupta-Valabhi)
Year 246 (565-66 AD.)
Provenance: Wala (Now reverted to the ancient name, Valabhipura) ,
near Bhavnagar, Gujrat. Now in British Museum, Oriental Charter No. 43.
Script: Brahmi the late western variety of the southern Class. But medial u, d, v and k become rounded.
Language: Sanskrit
Refrences: Bhandarkar, J,B,B.R.A.S. X, pp.77 J.G. Buhler, Ind.Ant. IV, 1875, pp.174 ff. Kielhorn, List of Northern Inscriptions. Ep.Ind, V,
D. Barnet, Ep.Ind, pp.338-40.

This is second plate, which records the concluding half of the charter. The first plate was not found with it.

Footnote 1
1. From the facsimile in Ep.Ind. XIII, Facing pp.339.
2. The plate had already received some damage at the corners, when it came into Buhler”s hands. Between 1875
when he edited it and 1890 when Barnett took it up for re-edition, more small pieces at the edges were lost.
The lost portions of the grant were supplied by Buhler from Bhandarkar’s plates published, J.B.B.R.A.S., X, pp-77,
3. Barnett – भोगिक
4. Buhler and Barnetts टुड़डा दद in उदर्दड़न्ग But see in 1,10.
Dudda was the sister’s daughter of Dhruvasena 1. The
co.vent founded by her continued to receive protection from the latter’s successor.

English Translation of the inscription

L1. 1-6 (His son is) the devout worshipper of siva, the
Illustrious Maharaja Guhasena, whose prowess was tested and revealed while splitting the temples of the
array of the rutting elephants of (his) enemies, the rays of whose foot-nails mingle with the glitter of the

crest jewels of his enemies, who are prostrate before him in consequence of is power, who because of
carefully keeping to the path ( i.e code of conduct for kings) prescribed in all the smritis and because of
keeping his subjects happy, bore the title Raja in conformity with its (Literal) meaning, who surpassed cupid, the
the moon, the lord of mountains (ie. the Himalayas), the ocean, (Brihaspati) the preceptor of gods, and the god
of wealth (Kubera) respectively in beauty, in splendour, in stability in depth, in wisdom (and) in riches, who
has renounced the entire rewards of his own (goood) actions as if they are (insignificant) like a straw since
he readily affords safety to those seeking refuge with him,, Who rejoices the hearts of the learned and of his
friends and lovers by granting them more wealth than they seek through (their) prayers, who is as it were
delight incarnate of the whole wide world being.
L1.6-7. In good health (he) addresses these commands to all his
(officer s, namely) Ayuktakas, vini-yuktakas, drangikas, mahattaras, chatas, bhatas, dhruva-dhikaranikas,
dandapasikas, choro-ddhar-anikas, rajasthaniyas and kumaramatyas and as well as to others concerned
with the matter

L1.7-12. “Be it known to you that in order to obtain for my parents and myself benefits as desired, in this world and the next I have granted the libation of water to the congregation of the reverend sakya monks, belonging to the eighteen schools of the Hinayana sect) who have come from
various directions to the great convent of Dudda built by the venerable Dudda established near Valabhitala, for utilisation on food, clothing, beds, seats, diagnosis of and medicine for
the sick and the like the following four villages
(1) samipedravātaka, situated (partly) in the Manumanji prevesya,
and partly in the Pippalarunlkhari pravesya, (2) Sangamanaka
in the Mandali dranga (district), (3) Neddiya and (4) chossari
both in the Detaka ahara (division) together with udranga, together with uparikara, together with the due share in produce, in cash and kind, and the ones arising from the winds and other
elements (bhuta), (and) with the right to forced labour arising
(there from) with (the privilege of) non-interference by all the
Government officials and) according to the axiom of bhumi-chhidra
(Lit. the earth and a hole).”
“Wherefore, nobody should act in contravention (of this
command) while this (land) is being enjoyed or cultivated or got
tilled according to the appropriate settled rules applicable to the
venerable Sakya Bhikshu Sangha. And the future worthy kings of our dynasty, realising that the royal power is impermanent, human life is unstable
and the reward for the land gift is common, should confirm
this gift of ours and protect it. And whosoever cancels
it and confirms cancellation, he should be joined to the lve evil deeds, and if a follower of the three
Vedas, he should be guilty of the five great sins, together with minor sins,
L1.6-17s What good man would resume gifts, which out of
fear of poverty, kings have given for pious purposes, and which resemble a discarded flower garland or a
The earth has been enjoyed by many kings, beginning with Sagara. The reward (or a land gift belongs to him, who own the land, at the time.
L1. 17-18 My own verbal order. My own sign manual, (that) of Maharaja Sri Guhasena, written by Skandabhata,
the Minister for peace and war. (Dated) the year 246, on the day of the dark fortnight of Magha.
(This same person executed the grants of Guhasena’s son, Dharasena 2, of Gupta.Vallabhi year 252 and 254, and
of his fourth descendant, Dharasena 4, of the 326 of Gupta-Valabhi. A term of office of 80 years is hardly possible. In fact we are not sure of our reading of numerals on the Maitraka plates)

Footnote 2

1. Buhler, read the year as 266, but the necessary correction was made in Kielhorn’s list. After Buhler reads
I.e the 18th day of the dark or fortnight” which is obviously wrong.
The corner bearing this portion of the Inscription was already lost in 1890,
when L.D. Barnett re-edited it.
Heuen- T Sang (Memoirs, II,162) confirms the fact. He states that in the hundred convents of Valabhi, The
Hinayana was chiefly studied. It is known that hinayana was cultivated in eighteen nikayas, See J.B.B.RA.S, X,
pp-69 ff.

Alok Mohan

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