ancient indian history

Ghugrahati Copper-plate Inscription

Inscription number 74.
Ghugrahati Copper-plate Inscription of Samacharadeva.
Provenance: Ghugrahati, Faridpur district, Bangla Desh.
Maharajadhiraja Samacharadeva was, it is believed, one of the kings, who took the place of the Guptas in Eastern India towards the end of the 6th century A D. Two of his gold coins have been found ( I.M.C, I, pp.120 and 122, Nos. 11 and 13). The provenance of only one of them is known as from near Muhammadpur, Jessore district, Bangla Desh
Three other copper plates, also found
from Faridpur district (Pargiter, Ind.Ant., July, 1910, Supra III, 64,70 &72) bring to light, two other Maharajadhdrajas in these parts. Dharmaditya and Gopachandra, who may have been
the predecessors of Samacharadeva, according to Pargiter and Bhattasali. Another Maharajadhiraja, Jayanaga, of this region is also known from his
plates. (Infra, III, 75 ).
Script: Brahmi.
Language: Sanskrit.
References: Dr Bloch, Arch, Surv. Rep. for 1907-8, pp.255;
R.D. Banerji, (i) Kotwalipara spurious Grant of Samacharadeva, J.A.S.B, August 1910, June, 1911, and Dec1914.
Pargiter, J.A.S.B,. Aug. 1911, Nalinikanta Bhattasali, Ep.Ind, XVIII,
Footnote 1.

1. From the facsimile in J.A.S.B, Aug, 1910, Bloch and Banerji considered the plate as spurious.
2. Expressed by a symbol.
3. The second na in suvarna looks like a ta. Probably a sign for doubling. Bhattasali identifies Navyavakasika with modern Sabhara, in Dacca district,
and Varaka-mandala with the district around Kotalipada, in Faridpur district.
वीधि is used in literature in the sense of a market, But it is clear from Paharpur Plate of G.E. 159, that in these inscriptions it signifies a small
territorial division, a district or tehsil (see supra, III, 68,L,1)

Footnote 2.
The designation, Mahattara, before Suradatta seams to have been omitted through over sight.
Originally engraved as दास was later corrected to दत्त with the result that it appears like दास्त.
The name endings of all these Mahattaras, e.g. kunda,
Palita, Ghosha, Datta and Dasa, which was first engraved and then corrected, are even now in use among the
Kayasthas and Navasakhas of Bengal.
English Translation of the inscription.

Om ! success ! while the matchless warrior, the illustrious
Maharajadhiraja Samacharadeva, who is equal in firmness to Nriga, Nahusha, Yayati and Ambarisha, is (ruling) in splendour, there is the confidential Governor incharge of suvarnavithi,
Jivadatta, who obtained Navyavakasika as a result of serving the pair of his (Samacharadeva’s) lotus-like feet, And approved by him (by Jivadatta) is the District Officer Pavitruka in
Varakamandala, while he (Pavitruka) was administering justice,
whereas his District Court, presided over by the chief Judge Damuka, as also the District elder Vatsakunda, the elder suchi Palita, the elder Vihita Ghosha, (the elder) Sura Datta, the
elder Priya Datta, the elder Janardana Kunda etc. and many others,
prominent men and Lawyers, were petitioned by supratika svami,
By uour favour, I desire a piece of waste-land lying neglected, for a long time, for thr purpose of establishing (the rituals of) bali charu and sattra and for the use of a Brahmana the same
may kindly be granted (to me duly) chartered through a copper
plate deed.
Whereas, having received this petition, and having decided after consultation with the other limbs of law as listed
above that since the land, full of pits and infested with beasts, being unprofitable to the king both in respect of religious merit and revenue, will bring revenue and religious
merit to the king if made usable, it be granted to the Brahmans
(and) having made the executors Naya Naga, Kesava and others
as arbitrators (kulavaras), and having excluded the three kulyavapas of the field previously granted by a copper-plate charter (and) having specified the boundary marks on four
sides, the remaining land in Vyaghrachoraka, has been granted
by a Copper-plate charter to this (aforesaid) supratikasvami.
The boundary marks in this respect are:
On the east, the goblin-haunted parkati tree, to the south is the property
(jotika) of Vidyadhara, on west is the corner of chandravarman’s fort, on the north is the boundary of the village
And here are a few verses:
(Here two of the traditional verses are quoted).
The year 14, the 2nd day of Karttika.

Footnote 2.
1. According to Pargiter, Varendra or Varendri represents the
ancient varaka-mandala. It included the area round Kotali-pada in Faridpur district.
2. Five great sacrifices पञ्च – महायझ prescribed for
the householders by Manu are (III, 67ff) enel
a) study and teaching -(ब्रहम -यझ or ऋषि-यझ)
b) Offering oblations to manes (पितृ-यझ)
c) giving food to all creatures
भूत-यझ or बलि
d) entertaining guests – (नृ-यझ or अतीथि-यझ)
e) Home (देव-यझ)
Charu, bali and sattra represent the 2nd, 3rd and 4th of these respectively.

Footnote 3.
1. According to Bhattasali, Kula means the chief and vara, common populace’ Hence kula-vara stands for chief men of the people. His interpretation does
not seem correct. In sanskrit, Kula stands for family, and vara (from vri to choose) should stand for chosen.
Hence the representatives of the families i.e referees, who were called upon to mark out the boundaries on the
2. Kulyavapa is the area of land, where one kulya of grain can
be sown. For the measure kulya, (see supra,II,16, L-11, n2)
3. According to Bhattasali, Jotika is a derivative from jota which is still current in Bengali in the sense of union or coming together, this meaning does not
suit the context at all. Pargiter considers it equi valent
to Bengali jot, meaning cultivating tenure, Jot is derived rom Sanskrit, Yautaka, meaning one’s exclusive
private property. or any property in general.

(Bhattasali identifies this Fort with the remains of the big fort at Kotali-pada in Faridpur district.

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