ancient indian history

Narasingapalli Plates of Hastivarman

Inscription number 43. 

Narasingapalli Plates of Hastivarman -(Ganga) Year 79 (575 A.D.).

Samantvarman was followed by 

Maharaja Hastivarman during the year 79. (577 C.E). Most of his reign, he was busy securing borders of his kingdom and  was engaged in numerous battles. He  defeated a formidable confederacy of his adversaries.

 Hastivarman called himself as the Lord of All Kalingas i.e  Trikalingadhipati. Hastivarman was also known as Rajasimha. He was a devotee

of Narayana.

This charter records the grant of six

halas of land, four shrines (niresana), and a free food establishment in honour of lord Narayan, the Lord of the Seven Worlds, who sleeps on seven oceans.During his rule, Hastivarman relocated the headquarters of his kingdom from Dantapura to Kalinganagara, on the banks of the Vamsadhara River.

Provenance: Narasingapalli, Chicacole taluka, Ganjam district, Andhra Pradesh.

Script: Early Southern type of Brahmi of 5th-6th centuries, A.D.

Language: Sanskrit

References Bharati Telugu, XI, pp.461ff. R.C. Majumdar, Ep.Ind, XXIII, pp.62-67.

Also known from Urlam plates of the year 80 (Ep.Ind, XVII, pp.330 and Infra, IV,44 )

Footnote 1.

1. From the facsimile in Ep.Ind. between pp.66 and 67.

2. Kalinganagara was identified by fleet with Kalingapatam (Ind. Ant. XVI, pp.132) and by G.V. Ramamurti with


3. Hultzech (Ep.Ind,. XVII, pp.232, 1.2) reads this conjunct as rnna, But it is obvious that in doubling the

consonant n. the top line curves are not repeated.

4. Rohanaki is identified by Majumdar with modern Ronunky

(pronounced Ronanki) in chicacole taluk. Further, Navagrama in the varahavartani vishaya, mentioned in

Ganjam plates of VajrahastaIIi (Ep.Ind.. XXIII, pp.73) is identified with the present Naogam in Tekkali taluk of

Ganjam district. Varahavartani vishaya, 

therefore, roughly corresponds to the coastal region between chicacole and Tekkali.

Footnote 2.

1. Garta is used in the sense of a canal in Manu, IV 203. A vishaya-garta should be a feature more prominent than a mere pit or a trench. It seems to have

been used here in the sense of canal irrigating a large part of the vishaya.

English Translation of the inscription.

Om ! Hail ! From the victorious (city of kalinganagara, which is pleasant in all seasons,the illustrious Maharaja

Hastivarman a great devotee of Mahesvara (siva): who

meditates on the feet of ( his) mother and father, whose feet


Rajasimha and Ranabhita, the two birudas of Hastivarman, recorded here are also mentioned in his urlam plates

Ep.Ind., VII, pp.330, and infra , IV, 44, LL24-25)

are lighted by the beam of light sprouting from the crest jewels

of all the feudatories made to submit by his excessive valour, in whom the spotless house of the Gangas stands firmly, who aroused the shouts of victory in the melees of many battles whose flawless fame extends over the surface of the earth girdled by

the waves of the four oceans: who acquired the overlordship of

the entire Kalinga with the flourish of the edge of his own

sword, who is the support of good conduct, wisdom and wealth,

from whom the blemishes of the Kali age have been removed by

(his) obeisance to the pair of lotus-like feet of the Lord Gokarnasvamin, the sole architect of the creation of the entire world, commands the assembly of all the agricultural householders in Rohanaki, within the district of Varahavarttani,

Be it known to you that on the advice of the Bhogika Buddhamanchi, we have donated in this village, for the increase

of religious merit of (our) mother, father and our selves, six halas of (duly) de-markated land together with four houses, making it an agrahara for the god, to last as long as the moon

and the sun do and having exempted it from all taxes, to Lord Narayana,

–who sleeps over the seven oceans, who is sung in seven hymns

(rathantara etc.) of the samaveda, who is the sole lord of the

seven worlds, and who has the designation of Ranabhitodaya, —for the performance of bali, charu and satra rites, and for the repairs of wear and tear (of the temple)

“Knowing thus nobody should cause any hindrance. The boundary marks here are:  On the east of this

(land) the borrow-pits of the village; on the south a mound of earth, on the west, the district canal with the Kuravaka+thicket on the north, it is attached the palm-grove.

And the future kings should maintain this religious gift. And likewise, the verses sung by vyasa are quoted:-

(Here follow three of the customary verses).

In the year seventy-nine, 79, of the prosperous and victorious dynastic reign, on the twelfth day of the bright

fortnight of Jyestha.

At his oral command this charter of Rajasimha has been written by V inayachandra, the son of Bhanu-


This is the charter of the illustrious Ranabhita, whose commands are irresistible, who has completely crushed the hostile confederacy by the friction of the edges of his discus.


According to Majumdar, the epoch of the Ganga era falls between 494 and 570 A.D. ( Ep.Ind. XXIII, pp.63). D.C.

Sircar, (Select.Inss, I, pp.485, n.1) arrives at 496-97 A.D. as the initial year of this era. V.V. Mirashi

favours 498 AD. as such (Ep. Ind,, XXVI pp.326 ff,)

For further discussion, see supra, IV, 41, n1. See also, R Subba Rao, J.A.H.R.S, V, pp.272-274, who suggested

494 A D. as the initial Year and J.C. Ghosh, Ind. Ant, 1932. pp. 237,who suggests 496 A.D.

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