Indian Inscriptions Volume III

Indian Inscriptions Volume III

 

PP1

Maharashtra/Goa

 

Pune Copper Plate Inscription of Prabhavati Gupta – Regnal Year – 13 – Language Sanskrit

Script: Nail headed variety of the late Brahmi of the southern class (with some peculiarities of northern class) of 5th century AD

 

  1. The legend on the seal clearly indicates that Prabhavati Gupta received the royal power apparently as regent. Hence the year given on the seal must be her own regnal year. It is intresting to note that in her 13th regnal year her eldest son diwakar asena who had atleast two brothers younger to him, were not invested with royal power, although he could be minor at this date.

(See HCIP Classical age P.180) A yuvraj Diwakar is mentioned as an author in the Sadukti Karomrata.

  1. The plates were found with copper smith of Pune, who originally belonged to Ahmad Nagar. They appear to have been heirloom in the family for several generations.

PP2

  1. From the Facsmile in Ep.Ind,XV facing p.42
  2. In the left margin on the level between lines 3-4
  3. The isht deva of Vakataka was Siva. But prabhavati inherited bhagwatism , who had made bhagwatism or vaishnavism very popular in India, even the southern parts by 5th century Ad. Many inscriptions of this period begin with Vaishnava invocation. “Jitam Bhagwata’ ef Pallava grants of simhavarnman II and his ancestors (infra vol IV 25-30) and grants of Madhava and of Western Ganga Dynasity 9infra IV, S1 S2) It matu however be noted that even Prabhavatis son, Pravarasena II continued the family allegiance to Siva (See his chanmak grant of the year 18, infra, Vol III Inscription no. 4)

PP3

  1. Nandivardhan has been identified with modern Nandardhan near Ramtek, in Nagpur District MP The city is mentioned in Kothuraka grant of of Pravarasena II regnal year 2 (Ep.ind.XXVI,pp159 f.) and Rithapur plates of Bhavadattavarman (ibid.XIX. p 100) Also infra III,160 It can not be identified identified with Nagardhan in the same neighborhood (The first king among the Guptas in her Rithpur
  2. In fact the title of Chandergupta I was Maharajadhiraja
  3. Though in the genecology’s of his successors’ inscriptions, he is eulogized as (Chirotannashvomethahatton” and his Asvamedhatype of coins hearing the legend “Ashvod-prakarmah: are known, It is no where claimed that he performed many Asvamedhas. It should also be noted that the usual epithets of Samudragupta invariably found in official Guopta records are transferred here to Prabhavatiguptas father

PP4

  1. We know from Sanchi Stone inscription of Chandergupta II year 93 (Supra II, 12)that he had a favorite alias Devaraja. Thew present inscription read with chammak grant of Pravarasena II (Infra III, 4) It is clear that Devegupta mentioned as Prabhavatis father in the latter inscription was identical with Chandergupta II and is not to be identified with Devgupta of the later gupta dynasty.
  2. Note that Prabhavati gupta uses not only the cognomen and the gotra of her parents , instead of her husbands, but also she gives pride of place of her parental genealogy. Apparently it was due to the great power and prestige of the Gupta emperors that makes her assert her descent from them not because of any injunctions of Dharamshastras, which Sircar (Sel.incs.I,P436 n.9) discusses in this context.

PP5

Second Plate

  1. The district is also known from the kothuraka grant (Ep.Ind XXXI, PP158 f) It is identified as the Hingerghat tehsil of the Wardha district.
  2. Pathak & Dikshit

Hinganghat is possibly corrupted from (Udduunguna)

 

  1. “Datti” = Gift – Apporva Dattya – According to the custom this relates to the things which were not previously granted
  2. Better – Srishtha
  3. “Bhat” is probably a policeman- (Chhatra Literally an umbrella bearer) Appears to be the leader of a posse of bhatas Presumably Chhatra & Bhat found compounded with Bhat in other records.

 

Pp6

  1. Better Chamadgharah: Alavan-klin-klin kreni = moist commodity, Khanaka- Minerals,

Charatan=pasturage, according to fleet or as Sircar suggests , Char = free movement

Paar= free ferrying in some records and “Asan” = encamping – the two phases referring to the needs of kings touring officers or Army According to Mirashi, Char = Grass for the horses of touring officers   ”Asan Charman” =Hides for their seats, Adgar = Charcoal for their cooking. Elsewhere we also have “Aprampra-balivardad-grahan Apramparah” = Free from customary obligations

 

  1. Pashu Medhya – Sacrificial Animals that the villagers were expected to provide to the King
  2. “Nidhi” = Treasure- Trove or unclaimed wealth “Upnidhi” = Surface finds But according to the Vishnu Samhita III 36, 39 “Nidhi” is wealth whose owner is not known and upnidhi = Sealed deposit
  3. “Klript” = possibly a fixed tax “Upklript” = Occasional or Casual taxes According to Mirashi “ Krliptop klript” = with minor or major taxes of other records

Pp7

Seal ; This is the enemy – chastising command of the mother of the heir-apparent, who is the ornament of the vakatakas and Who has obtained royal dignity in due succession

In margin- seen

L1 Success Victorious is the lord Vishnu Hail from Nandi Vardhana

L11-7 There was a maharaja Sri Ghatotkacha, the first king among the Guptas. His noble son was Maharaja

  1. “utkattitam” = Engraved

Pp8

Sri Chandragupta – His son was Maharajadhiraja

Sri Samudragupta – Who was performer of many asvamedha sacrifices : who was the daughters son of the Lichchhavis and who was begotten on the Chief queen Kumaradevi. His noble son accepted or favored by his majesty was Maharajdhiraj Sri Chander Gupta who was a matchless warrior on the earth. Who was the exterminator of all the kings; whose fame was tested by waters of all the four oceans; Who was the giver of many thousands of crores of cows and gold and who was the devout worshipper of Lord Vishnu

L1.7-13: His daughter Dhraha gotra and begotten on the illustrious chief queen Kubernaga (herself) born in the Naga family; the illustrious Prabhavati Gupta, who is the chief queen of Maharaja Shri Rudrasena (II) of the vakatakas and the mother of the heir apparent Sri Divakarsena ; and who is ornament to both the families and is extremely devoted to the Lord Vishnu – after announcing her well being commands the Brahmins and other house holders of the village in the unguna village in the supratishta ahara and located to the eastern side of the village Vilavinaka to the southern side of village shirsha, to the Western side of Kadapinjana and to the northern side of sidivivarka:-

 

 

 

 

Pp9

L1.13-15 Be it known to you that we have for the enhancement of our religious merit bestowed this village as a fresh grant with liberation of water on ( this) the twelfth ( day) of the bright (half) of (the month) of Karttika; after having first offered it at the feet of Lord Vishnu upon Acharya Chanalasvamin a devotee of Lord Vishnu. For this reason you should carry out all injunctions with proper deference.

L1.15-18 And here in wew confer the exemptions incident to a agrahara (Village) belonging to a community of Chaturvidyas as approved by the earlier kings viz the village is out of bounds for police men and umbrella bearers or police officers ; is free from the obligation to provide to the state right of improvement and encampment of troops, hides, charcoal,moist commodities and minerals; free from the obligations to provide sacrificaial animals; free from the demands of flowers and milk, with right to treasure troves and other unclkaimed wealth and free from fixed and casual tax.

Evidently Chaturvaidyas means those well versed with four vedas

 

Pp 10

L1.18-20 So this grant should be protected and increased by future kings. Whosoever disregarding our charter shall make or cause to make the slightest obstruction here, him, on being reported by Brahmnas, we will arrest and punish.

L1.18-21 In this context there is a verse sung by vyasas :- here a customary imprecatory verse is quoted

L.22 And this charter is written in the thirteenth year engraved by Chakardasa.

  1. Rithapur Copper – Plate inscription of Prabhavati Gupta of the time of Pravarsena II – Regnal Year 19

Province: Rithapur (Riddhapura) Amraoty District Maharashtra

 

PP 12

Script : Box headed variety of Late Brahmi of the southern class of the 5th Century AD

Language Sanskrit

Metres: V1

ReferencesY R Gupta Journal and Proceedings of ASB NS XX pp 58 ff DC Sircar Sel INSS I pp 439-42

Note that this record is later in date than the chammak plates issued by Pravarsena II in his 18 th regnal year (Infra III,4)

 

 

 

Pp 13

Second Plate – First Side

  1. From the facsimile in J.P.A.S.A.B., N.S. XX.
  2. Ramagiri is identified with modern Ramtek near Nagpur. The God Ramagiri Swamin at Ramtek must have been a form of Vishnu the isht devta of Prabhvati most probably Rama, to whom the place continues to be sacred even today.

 

 

Pp 14

  1. It appears the brothers Damodarsena and Pravarsena ruled after one after the other. At the time of death of their father Rudesena II, both were minors an eventuality necessitating the regency of Prabhavati Gupta foir at least 13 years. The Rithapur grant was issued when her younger son, Praversena, had completed more then 18 years rule and she had completed a century of life. Thus she was 82, when Praversen II ascended the throne. Since the child bearing age of a woman ends before 50, Praversena must be over 32 at the time. Even if Rudersena II died soon after the birth of Praversena II we have to account for 32 years of rule, of which Prabhavatis regency accounts for 13 years and we have to assign the intervening 19 years to Divakersenas rule. In reality, however the gap between Rudersenas death and Praversenas ascent to throne may have been more then 50 yearsgiving Divakersenaa reign of nearly 40 years. Hence we can not accept the suggestion of Sircar that : “it is not altogether impossible that 5the brothers were ruling different parts of of the kingdom at the same time and that as the lannd granted fell in the kingdom of Pravarsena, his regnal year was recorded. See also his other arguments (Sel.Inss.,I,PP.440,n.2) ) It is note wothy that even in this vakataka grant the Gupta kings are given the higher title of Maharajadhiraj while vakatake kings reveive the lower designation Maharaj, showing that the latter functioned under a subordinate alliance with the Guptas. Extension of Gupta hegemony to the far south is also injdicated by the existence of the dynasity – Guttas –Guptas) of Guttal, in the Darwar district and the story of the connection of a daughter of Chandragupta II with Srisaila and the Satara hoard of more then one thousand coins of Kumargupta I.

(V V Mirashis suggestion (Comprehensive History of Ind. 1981 p 137 and n 53) that Pravarsen was the coronation name of Damodarsena)

Pp 15

Second Plate Second Slide

Gupta: Div – and Pottra. V V Mirashi, ( Notes on D.R. Bhandarkars inscriptions of the early Gupta Kings (PP 48-49) explains “Tagr-varsh-shat-jeev-putr-poutra” as “She whose sons and grand sons will live for more then a hundred years” It does not appear plausible. Why only for more then 100 years why not 1000 years. The adjectives “jeevsuta and jeevputra” (= jeevatsutra & jeevatputra occur else where in prescriptions in the sense “She whose son or sons are alive.

See also Ep.ind.,VIII p 73; Ep.ind.XXIX p139 and XXXIV p 241

 

  1. Identified with Asatnagar in the Elichpur district Maharashtra. It was situated along the road leading to or named after Kasika. Sircar reads Kausikmarga and suggests that it is the name of the region and doesnot mean a road here
  2. “Brree” was originally engraved instead of Brra
  3. Read “ta-putr-poutranam”
  4. I.e. a house Inivesena0 complete with inner ladies apartments (abhyantpur= antahpur)

 

Pp 16

 

 

Third Plate Second Slide

 

  1. Bhuktkabhog-kshetram -= The field that they already enjoy
  2. Same as snidhih sopnidhih: vishti = Forced labor. For other immunities see notes on Pune plates of Prabhavato Gupta above (Supra III,1,ll 17-18 notes)

 

Pp 17

English Translation

L.1       Om ! Vistopry to the Lord (Vishnu)

From near the feet of the divine Lord of Ramagiri

L1.1-13   There was Maharaj Sri Ghatotkacha, the first king among the Guptas. His son was Maharaj Sri

 

  1. Better Dushkritam ! Iti !
  2. Read Rajyam Prashastah or Rajya Prashasan ) Svaatsre akonvinshtitam. The form vishintim is also possible (vishanti manam yatya sah vishanti ma ) But it is not found in the usage except in the Prakrit
  3. Gupte   (Vavendswami)

 

Pp18

Chandrgupta

His son accepted at his feet by him, was Maharaja Sri SamudraGupta, Who was the daughter’s son of Lichchhavis, begotten on the chief queen, kumradevi. His son accepted at his feet was Maharajadhiraja Sri Chandergupta, who was the giver of many thousand crore of cows and gold acquired by lawful means; who was the exterminator of all kings; who was the matchless warrior on the earth; who was a devout worshipper of the devine Vishnu and who was begotten on the chief queen prabhavati-gupta, who is of Dharna gotra; Who was begotten on kubernagadevi born in the naga family; who is an ornament to both the dynasties; who has been leading queen of Rudrasen (II) of the vakataka fanmily; who is the mother of Maharaja Sri Damodarsena and Pravarsena II ; who is devoted to the feet of the (Divine) Bhagvat; who is above a hundred years in age and has living sons and grand sons – After mentioning her well being, commands the villagers led by Brahmins and the village Mahattaras in Asvatthanagara located on the road of Kasika:-

L1.13-16   For the purpose of increasing our religious merit for this world and the next , we have bound down 9ie granted) by this Copper plate charter with

 

Pp19 liberation of water, the field that was already being enjoyed by him and four home steads for cultivators together with a house with ladies inner apartments; to the brahmins of Parasara gotra And of Taittiriya Sakha (Of the Yajurveda) along with their sons and grandsons also.

L1.16-21 And we grant for this (gifted field ) appropriate exemptions and restrictions assign4ed to the villages of the communities “Chaturvedins” as were approved by former kings. These are (as follows), are free from taxes, out of bounds for regular and irregular soldiers, free from obligation of supplying flowers and milk, free from the obligation of supplying fodder, (Chara) Seats, hides and charcoal ( to passing troops) free from the obligation to supply salt, moist and purchasable commodities and minerals, exempted from all types of forced labor, with the right to hidden treasures and deposits, together with the right to fixed and other miscellaneous taxes, to be enjoyed for as long as the moon and the sun endure and inheritable by sons & grand sons.

L1.21-24 : Obstruction (During the enjoyment of the field) should not be caused by any one (rather) it should be protected or increased. And he who ignoring our charter puts even a

Pp 20

small obstruction or causes one, to be put him on being reported by the Brahmins, We shall arrest and punish.

L1.24-29 In this honoring of religious persons, we are not mentioning the gifts, care and nursing by many past kings to avoid repetition of meritorious deeds. We are commanding present people who have been made to submit by persistent determination and valour. And in this context a verse sung by Vyasa is the authority

(Here an imprecatory verse is quoted)

 

 

L1.29-31 In the 19th year of   reign of Maharaja Sri Pravarsena (II) of the Vakataka family, on the 12th day of the bright fortnight of the lunar month of karttika

L.31 The Dutaka is Devanandasvamin written by Prabhusimha

 

Pp 23

  1. Two incomplete grants of Pravarsena II from Wardha District – Regnal year 11 (of second grant)
  2. Provenance: Belora Arvi Tehsil, Wardha District Maharashtra

Script: Box headed variety of Brahmy

Language: Sanskrit

Refrences: V V Mirashi, Ep.Ind- XXIV, pp. 260–67

 

  1. The two sets of A and B were found in the possession of N H Jane of Belora. Originally each of the two sets had three plates of which only two each have survived. The last plate of set A and the first of set B are missing. All the four plates are palimpsests showing clear traces of earlier letters, which were beaten in before incising the present charters. Set B records the grant of two villages one of which had already given by the same king to the same donee by set A giving the impression that the set B is a forgery made with the purpose of adding another village to the original grant. But there was no need of replacing the third plate of the first set. Also the formation of letters and occurrence of same orthographical pecuilarities and grammatical mistakes in both the records make it highly probabale that both the grants were written by same clerk in the secreteriate of the Vakatakas. Senapati Chitravarman mentioned in set B, continued to hold office till atleast the 18th year of Pravarsena II (C.I.I, III p-240 infra II,4, P60). These facts indicate its genuineness. It appears that on a request from the donee to issue him a consolidated charter for the grants the Set B was issued.

 

 

Pp 24

  1. From the Facsimiles in Ep.Ind,XXIV, facing p.264, for set A and facing p 266 for set B
  2. Nandivardhan is most probably identical with the Nagardhan ( Also called Nandardhan) near Ramtek as suggested by Hiralal9 Ep.IX, P 43)
  3. This mark of punctuation and several others in the text of both the sets are superfluous

Pp 25

Second Plate Second Slide

 

  1. The mark of punctuation is superfluous
  2. Sailpura has been identified with salbardi situated in the midst of hills about 24 Kms east of Ladki.It is an ancient place where some old caves and hot springs are located. Asi the chief town of Bhukti may be identified with Ashti, about 16 kms south east of Belora. Mahallalata or the larger lalata may be represented by Ladki or Ghat Ladki in th43e Morsi Taluk of Amraoti district about 29 km N.W. of Belora. The smaller Lalata of times may be the same as the modern Ladegaon on the left bank of Wardha, about 32 kms south of Belora.

 

 

 

             Pp 26

Set A

English Translation The text of the seal and of L1.1-12 is identical with the corresoponding text in the chamak plates of Pravarsena II. For translation of this section See Chamak Plates above)

  1. This mark of punctuation is superfluous
  2. Perhaps this town received its name from a shrine of Sivacalled Pravaresvara installed by Pravarsena and named after himself.
  3. The stop is indicated by two concentric circles with horizontal arms on either side.

 

Pp27

L1.12-14 At the command of Param Maheshvara Maharaja Sri Pravarsena II, the village Mahallalata in the ASI bhukti on the road tyo Sailapura, has been granted to the Brahmna Suryasvamin of Kasyapa Gotra and Taittiriya sakha and a resident of Praveresvara-shadvinisati-vataka.

 

L1.14-16 Wherefore all our officers appointed on supervisory assignments and the high born officers incharge of conveying orders and regular soldiers and their leaders be commanded with the already announced orders.

L1.16-18   Be it known to you that for the increase of our piety, life strength, victories and royal fortune in this world and for our welfare in this and the next world and for favoring ourselves, this village has been granted with liberation of water as a fresh gift and as a religious endowment conducive to victory.

  1. “Chhatrah” is variously interpreted as irregular soldiers or officer in charges of soldiers or as the umbrella holders (from Chhatra=umbrella)

Pp 28

Incomplete grants of Praversena II from Wardha District – Regnal Year 11- Set B

Second Plate First Slide

 

 

 

 

 

Since Set B is almost a verbal copy of Set A it is evident that the missing first plate carried the first six lines of the text as in Set A

 

 

 

 

Pp 29

Second Plate Second Slide

Perhaps identical with Dighi on the left bank of the Wardha about 48 Kms from Ashti. Pakkana can not be identified.

 

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