An Imperial History Of India/Gauda and Magadha Provincial History

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An Imperial History Of India

By K.P. Jayaswal - the Sanskrit Text, Revised by Rahul Sankrityayana

Publisher - Motilal Banarasi Dass, The Punjab Sanskrit Book Depot, Sasdmrha, Lahore
Wikified by Laxman Burdak

Part II: Gauda and Magadha Provincial History

Gauda and Magadha Provincial History

We have seen in s-25 that kings after Budha Gupta up to the end of the time of Harshavardhana have been omitted. In this section the MMK gives some of those omitted details as part of the local history of Gauda and Magadha. They assume the character of appendices to the Imperial History of Madhyadesa and the East just surveyed. They seem to have been taken at least from two books, as one period (Naga to Imperial Gupta) has been repeated and inserted as two independent pieces. The latter portion from c. 500 A.D. is full of interest, but its interpretation is a job like deciphering an unknown code.

It is possible that the whole of this part (IX ff.) (verses 691-824) is by a subsequent hand, who to conceal the recent character of his com position preferred to give mystic initials instead of names, so that people may realize the greatness of the ancient prophecy and its true fulfilment.

This provincial or additional notices are brought down from 140 A.D. to the dynasty of G o p a l a, like the previous section. In a way it is a repetition but not inferior in worth. Owing to their furnishing matters to fill up gaps they are most useful. They show that the G u p t a family was divided into two branches Gauda and Magadha and that there was no Malava branch, which has been supposed and formulated by historians.

"Gauda" Lines Again

From verse 691, p. 632 (T. 459&) to 882, p. 646 (T. 469b) the largest section of the book is devoted to the political history of Bengal proper, closing it with the line:

tatah parena bhupalah Gopala dasajivinah
'after him, there will be the Gopalas (that is, the Palas) of the servile caste kings'.

This line really closes the historical sketch of the MMK. Two short subsequent passages on Madhyadesa, Anga, Kamarupa, Vaisali and Kapilavastu are perfunctory and negligible.

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In the former section the Imperial Gupta line is brought down through the Later Guptas to their end and the rise of Gopalaka. Here again the Local Gauda history of royal families is brought down to the Gopalas. We have therefore to give to the word tatah in the opening line (V. 691) the meaning as beginning a new section, and not 'after that' that is, after Gopalaka, for, the dynasty of Gopala as is well-known, has not been touched upon herein. Royal history (1) begins with Nagaraja, then it describes Prabha Vishnu, then Samudra, then the subsequent kings, oppression on the Gauda people and the rise of Soma (that is, Sasanka) , fight between Harshavardhana and Sasanka, Sasanka's son and his end; (2) then once more (V.741) it begins with the Nagaraja, describes Prabha Vishnu and Sisu (the Vakataka), and at once takes 'the (formerly Vaisya) Kshatriya' (Gupta) dynasty with Bh(anu Gupta), Pra(kasa-ditya) and later, ending with the latter's 'subject' descendants, finally ushering the advent of the Gopalas. Hence it is evident that the history of Bengal and Bihar in its local aspect is being dealt with here from the Nagas i.e. the pre-Gupta Bharasivas.

30. The Nagas [under the Bharasivas]

[c. 140 A.D.-320 A.D.]

Revival of Orthodox Hinduism in Bengal

"The Naga king, of majesty, a lover of religion (will) then rise, who caused to be nude a beautiful Buddha image to a chaitya (691; p, 632, T. 459 B.) He made monasteries for the Sangha in the land" (692). "From that time onwards the capital of the Gaudas became full of (covered up by) heretical Brahmins" (693).


Compare this and the subsequent section with section-37 below.

On the Naga history see my History of India, 150 A.D. to 350 A.D. The Puranas say that the Eastern capital of the Nagas (their Governors) was at Champavati (Bhagalpur) ,

In the beginning, according to the MMK, the Nagas patronised Buddhism. But it is noted that orthodox revival dates from this reign in Bengal (that is, after the Sakavamsa noted above, who are said to have been superseded by the Naga-senas ( 17-18).

30- A Emperor Prabhavishnu and Gauda king

Then in this Eastern country in the capital, troubled by the Tirthikas, Bhagavat, lord of the Gaudas, was crowned king by the sacrificer (vritin, T.) Prabha-vishnu staying in the Southern country (694) , He having ruled there came to the

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West; having entered the elegant capital Saketa he had to return (696). The East up to sea was invested by robbers; the king was killed by weapon after a rule of 3 years (698).


In this vratin, the sacrificer, Prabhavishnu, it seems, P r a- varasena Vishnuvriddha - the Vakataka emperor is to be recognised. He installed the Gauda king, who invaded Saketa. Saketa was at that time the capital of the pre-imperial Guptas, and the invasion probably refers to the Gupta attempt, i.e., of Chandra Gupta I, to declare his own independence and his defeat at Pataliputra. [Compare this section with s-37.]

Prabhavishnu being called daksbinatya may simply mean that he belonged to the country south of Madhyadesa (Doab) , the Vindhyan country. The Tibetan version has 'staying in Dakshina'.

31. Emperor Samudra Gupta, the Prosperous; and his character

Latter than him Samudra, of good fame, will be nripatih (sovereign) (700). His younger brother, Bhasmama [Bhasma, T.] by name, that man of low intelligence and wicked mind, will have the government (of Gauda ?) for 3 days. He (Samudra) was lordly, shedder of excessive blood, of great powers and Dominion, heartless, ever vigilant, (mindful) about his own person, unmindful about the hereafter, sacrificing animals; with bad councillor he greatly committed sin (694).

His government [or kingdom] was inundated with carping logicians, (tarkikaih), vile Brahmins.

Men and manes had every luxury. The sovereign (nripati-Samudra) acquired prosperity of various sorts.

He marched systematically and reached the West and in the North reached the gate of Kashmir. He was victorious on the battle-field even in the North.

He ruled after that (conquest) for 22 years and 5 months. On this earth on account of a fell disease he fainted several times (at his death), and in great pain he died, and went down (704-718).


Minus the theological venom, the character is well summed up 'Of great powers and dominion' Makasavadyakarinah probably implies a 'super man'. Nirghrinin, according to Buddhist ideal, is heartless, i.e., severe.

This text furnishes a positive record that Samudra Gupta marched up to Kangra or Jammu, the very door of the Kushans.

His reign-period as Emperor is exactly given here dvadasabdani

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sarvatra masa[n]pancha dasas tatha- 12+10 years and 5 months. This will bring his reign to end c. 372-73 A.D. He marched also to Western India. Here we have accurate history.

Did Bhasmama dispute the succession, or was he a governor of Gauda?

32. Condition of Bengal

Later Gupta Period [c. 570 A.D.-590 A.D.] before the rise of Sasanka

There was a civil war amongst them, greedy for the kingdom (708-709). It ended by the installation of S., the youngster who became a mere symbol. The Brahmin leaders who had done this became disunited amongst themselves. Reaching the province of Magadha in the city called Udumbara the leading Brahmin crowned two boys. Then he retired to the East, and arriving in the province of Gauda they (? one of them ?) become (s) rivalless (710-712). The two boy chiefs were killed by the wicked one in Kalinga, and owing to his bad guide he committed many murders : he killed all those Gaudas who had been honoured by the kings who had fostered the civil war (713-714).


This fills up the period of the f Separatist Gaudas' of s-25 above. The account is somewhat confused. It is not clear whether the chief Brahmin Minister went to Gauda and punished the Gaudas who had taken part in the family feud, of whether one of the two boys called balamukhyan (?) evidently only one is meant from several adjectives did this. This feud and oppression of Bengal led to the rise of Sasanka (see next section).

The civil strife seems to have arisen between S.(Maha-Sena Gupta?) and some other claimant. Maha Sena Gupta's time is a generation before Harshavardhana (606 A.D.) and Sasanka (c. 590 A.D.).

Udumbara, must have been a town in South Bihar, probably it is Dumraon in the Shahabad district.

33. Soma = Sasanka

Then, Soma, an unparalleled hero will become king up to the banks of the Ganges, up to Benares and beyond. He, of wicked intellect, will destroy the beautiful image of the Buddha. He, of wicked intellect, enamoured of the words of the Tirthikai, will burn that great bridge of religion (Dharma), (as) prophesied by the former Jinas (Buddhas). Then that angry and greedy evil-doer of false notions and bad


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opinion will fell down all the monasteries, gardens, and chaityas; and test-houses of the Jainas [Nirgranthas] (715-718).


Later on, his caste Brahmin is given. He was a popular product of Bengal, brought to the front on account of oppression from the Gupta feud.

His identity is established by the next section.

34. Rajyavardhana and Hanhavardhana; and War with Soma (Sasanka)

At that time will arise in Madhyadesa the excellent king R. (Rajyavardhana), brilliant, self -possessed, of the Vaisya caste, and steady. He (will be) of this religion, and (will be) as powerful as Soma(Sasanka). He also ends at the hand of a king of the Nagna caste (710-711).

His younger brother H. (Harshavardhana) will be an unrivalled hero.

Battle of Pundravardhana: He will be with a great army; that brave man of overpowering prowess, decides against the famous Soma. , The powerful Vaisya king with a large army marched against the Eastern country, against the excellent capital called Pundra of that characterless man.

Adopting the duty of Kshatra, with the sense of personal injury and indignation he, though kind, prone to religion, and learned, kills many and becomes an oppressor of living creatures, for the reason of being engaged in the duty of chastisement (712-715).

Condition impowd on Soma: He defeated Soma, the pursuer of wicked deeds; and Soma was forbidden to move out of his country (being ordered) to remain therein (thenceforth) (716).

H. returned, having been honoured in that kingdom of the barbarian (Mlechchha). He, an excellent king amongst followers of Artha(Sastra) and Dhanna($astra), was successful in his undertaking (717). Having marched from his country with a desired course, they the entourage of Rajya and Harshin had achieved the business. Now he attained the pleasures of royalty (718-719).

End of Soma: [Soma had done in his former life some Buddhist pious acts which are detailed, hence] Soma the Brahmin (king) obtained high prosperity. He gave largess to Brahmins and ruled for 17 years,1 month, 7 or 8 days. He died of a disease in his mouth, having been eaten by worms and went down (to hell). His capital was then destroyed by divine agency (724).

His life was destroyed by magic (mantra) done by men; high fever brought about senselessness, and he died (735).

(Description of his life in hell follows : 726-729 ; and the prudence of being a Buddhist is emphasised, 730-736).

35-36. Condition of Bengal

Sasinka's death. Revolutions

After the death of Soma, the Gauda political system (Gauda-tantra) was reduced to mutual distrust, raised weapons and mutual jealousy one (king) for a

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week; another for a month; then a republican constitution such will be the daily (condition) of the country on this bank of the Ganges where houses were built of the ruins of monasteries (745-48).

Thereafter Soma's son Manava will last for 8 months 5 ( 1/2 ?) days.

Comments on 34-36

We have had no detail and no result of the expedition of Harsha from Bana, and we are glad to have them now.

A battle which should be named the Battle of Pundravardhana, was fought; Sasanka was reduced to an abject submission, and he was confined within his own kingdom.

He died subsequently, in spite of Buddhist wishes, a natural death.

Sasanka was an orthodox revivalist as against the weakening cult of Mahayana Buddhism, patronized and fostered by the Later Guptas. Now the caste of Sasanka becomes known he was a Brahmin.

Sasanka's death brought about the end of the national monarchy of Bengal. Ganajyam is a misselection for Ganarajyam (T.) , a republic. The same condition prevailed later before the election of Gopala.

The first section of the Provincial Gauda history ends here.

Repetition of Naga-Vakataka History

The first section of the Provincial History ends with Soma's son. Now to introduce the Guptas in c. 500 A.D. that is, the Later (non-imperial) Guptas, history is again taken up from the Nagas and Vakatakas. The history of the Guptas from 500 A.D. up to the Maukhari empire, which has been omitted before, is filled up now. It is evidently extracted from another source. It is curious that the Nagas are noted here to have been Vaisyas.

The section is highly important. It supplies details which were most needed.

37. The Naga kings and Prabbavishnu

[Then, (about) the Minor, (Sisu) of the Vaisya Caste] (not in T.). A king called Naga-raja1 will become king of Gauda. Near him will be Brahmins and other Vaisyas by caste (T.). the Nagas will be surrounded by Vaisyas and will themselves be Vaisyas. Their government becoming unfit (read asamprata for asamprapta)

1. The Tibetan text in place of the first line seems to read that the Nagas were of the lowest Brahmin class, originally; and later on their status was that of the Vaisyas:

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there will be distress from famine and invasion, and from great robbers. The government will have no bounds. The role full of danger to life and lo of life will last for 6 years. The Vaisyas owing to their former sins will become distrustful of one another (750). Then their king will be Prabha Vishnu who will be one who has adopted Kshatra status (755).

[See for 'the Minor' the next section].


Compare this with 30-30-A, where the very dynasties are discussed. Here we have the further detail that Prabha Vishnu (Vishnu-vriddha Vakataka) took possession of Bengal after 6 years of weak rule in the final days of the (Bharasiva) Nagas. The name Jaya (750) is quite in line with the Bharasiva Naga names we read on the coins e.g., Haya, Traya, etc. (JBORS, XIX. 1; History of India, (Naga-Vakataka Period) p. 35).

The Vishnuvriddha Vakatakas accepted Kshatriya status although they had been Brahmins, But it is difficult to imagine why the Nagas are called here Vaisyas.

38. Confusion in the East, reign of Sisu [Rudrasena] and the rise of the Gupta Dynasty

The section proceeds to give the condition in ' the Gauda system ' that is, Magadha and Gauda, under the Emperor Prabhavishnu. From section 30-A it is evident that he installed a king in the East whose name was Bhagavat. Probably it was Bhagavat Varman, a possible ancestor of Sundara-varman at Pataliputra mentioned in the Kaumudi-mahot- sava, or some other king in Bengal. The confusion described below refers to the revolutions connected with the Kota family and Chandra Gupta I, and the victory of Samudra Gupta over Sisu, who stands in the Puranas for Rudrasena I the Vakataka Emperor, defeated by Samudra Gupta. The word Gupta seems to have been translated by vanik (Vaisya).

"Without doubt, in the system of Gauda (then) there (will) be kings, some of whom will be killed (in war) by weapon and some will die of diseases (i.e., natural death) (755-56). They were all orthodox Hindus, [they were consigned to naraka],

Then, again, Sisu will be king in whose court women will hold chief influence. He will rule for a fortnight. He was killed by weapon (757).

A great famine and invasion made the Eastern Provinces distracted, terrorised and demoralised.

In that country, undoubtedly, (then) there will be a king a great king of

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Mathura Jata (जाट) (Jat = जाट) family, born of a Vaisali (वैशाली) lady (T.), originally Vaisya . He became the king of the Magadhas (758-60).

महादुर्भिक्षसंपातं परचक्रसमाकुलम् ।
प्राच्या जनपदा व्यस्ता उत्रस्ता गतमानसा ।।758।।
भविष्यन्ति न संदेह: तस्मिं देशे नराधिपा: ।
मधुरायां जातवंशाढ्य: वणिक सूर्वी नृपो वर: ।।759।।
सोअपि पूजितमूर्तिस्तु मागधानां नृपो भवेत (T.463b)
तस्याप्यनुजो भकाराख्य प्राचीं दिशि समाश्टत: ।।760।।
तस्यापि सुत: पकाराख्य: प्राग्देशेष्वेव जायत: ।
क्षत्रिय: अग्रणी प्रोक्त: बालबंधानुचारिण: ।।761।।
(see for Sanskrit text)

Owing to the name Gupta the dynasty has been considered by the author as Vaisya originally. But the author is careful to note the fact in the next verse that they were described before him (prokta) as leading Kshatriyas (kshatriyah agrani) (क्षत्रियः अग्रणी) (761).

The invasion mentioned above refers to the Kota vs. Gupta fights for two generations.

It is to be marked that although the king is not named, he is described as the son of the Vaisali Lady in the Tibetan text. He is said to have been a Mathura-Jata (जाट) (Sanskrit- Jata-vamsa जाट-वंस) . Jata-vam'sa, that is, Jata Dynasty stands for Jarta, that is, Jat. That the Guptas were Jat, we already have good reasons to hold (JBORS, XIX. p. 115). His Vaisali mother is the Lichchhavi lady. Evidently the ancestors of Samudra Gupta, according to this datum, once belonged to Mathura.

Bhanu Gupta and Prakataditya

[The course of history after 510 A.D.]

In this section the chief personality is P. or Pra. (as in Tibetan). He is the son of Bb. and is a contemporary of king Gopa who does not belong to the dynasty. The only king of the dynasty who had the name Bh. was Bhanu Gupta, and his subordinate ruler was Gopa-raja who fought for B h a n u-G u p t a and died on the battle-field of Eran. Pra. was a bad boy of the family and had been imprisoned up to the age of 17. He was brought out of prison by an Invader who was very powerful and had reached the East, having come from the West. He enjoyed kingdoms acquired by others. He crowned the young Pra. as king of Magadha at Benares, and then died on his march. His name is given as H., i.e., Huna. H. was succeeded by his son who was very wicked, a patron of Brahmins; he was so pressed by his enemies that he lost his kingdom. He was marked with the appellation of Planet [Mihira = sun].

I feel certain that this H. was Toramana and the Planet is Mihirakula. They are called Sudras. A writer writing about 700 A.D. when describing a small community as the Hunas who had

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been settled for two centuries as Hindus, would naturally call them Sudras.

The MMK adds to our existing knowledge of the Hun invasion, and removes the mist from the personality of Baladitya of Yuan Chwang.

The Huns under Toramana had reached Magadha and gone to some town called Bhagavatpura, where Pr. was caught hold of and set up as the king of Magadha at Benares, and Toramana who was retiring west-wards, died at Benares. When Mihirakula became king, Magadha was subject to him. This is confirmed by Yuan Chwang who says that Baladitya rebelled and refused to pay tribute, and when Mihirakula was brought as a prisoner before Baladitya, Mihirakula refused to show his face as the position between the master and the subject had been reversed.

Then, who was Baladitya and who was this Pra., and what became of Bh. (Bhanu-Gupta)?

Although Pra. was installed at Benares, it is stated that he actually became king after the death of the Planet. It is also implied that the imprisonment and release of Pra. took place during the life-time of Bh. The king intervening between the death of H. (Huna Toramana) and the death of the Planet, his son, we may take it, was Bhanu Gupta who in 510 A.D. at Eran is described as ruling and as the bravest man on the earth. Evidently Bhanu Gupta's aditya-name was Baladitya. The name of the son of a second Baladitya whose one ancestor at least was another Baladitya, was Prakataditya (GI, p. 285). Pra.'s successor, according to the MMK, were two short-lived brothers who were followed by Rajyavardhana. Yuan Chwang saw pious buildings at Nalanda raised by successive kings in the following order (Beal, ii, 168,170; Watters, ii. 164-65).

  • [Kumara Gupta II] Sakraditya (evidently a mistake for Sri-kramaditya as in several other names e.g.,Mahirakula for Mihirakula.)
  • Budha Gupta [mis-spelt as Buddha Gupta.}
  • Tathagata Gupta

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Then a king from Mid-India

Siladitya (Harsha ?)
Against this we have in the MMK; and in Inscriptions or Coins.
Kumara Gupta [II] Kumara Gupta [II]
U. [Budha Gupta] U. Budha Gupta
Bh[anu Gupta] Bhanu Gupta [Baladitya]
Pra[kataditya] and V[ajra],his younger brother [I] Prakataditya
Rajyavardhana Rajyavardhana,

It is thus clear that here we are dealing with a Baladitya who flourished after, not before Kumara Gupta II, i.e., Baladitya II, and that this Baladitya, father of Prakataditya (Sarnath insc.) is to be identified with Bhanu Gupta, father of Pra. (MMK) , and that Tathagata Gupta came in between Budha Gupta and Bhanu Gupta (in the period c. 500 A.D. to 5 10 A.D.) , that the Vajra of Yuan Chwang is identical with Prakataditya's brother V. of the [T. MMK] or with Prakataditya himself.

The line of Krishna Gupta and Adityasena (7 generations before Harshavardhana) must have arisen about c. 500 A.D. According to the Deo-Barnark inscription a gift made by Paramesvara Baladitya was confirmed by "the presiding authorities for the time being" viz. by Paramesvara Sarvavarman and Paramesvara Avantivarman, and then finally by Jivita Gupta II (GI., 216). This shows that the Emperor Baladitya whose gift was confirmed by another government, that is of Sarvavarman Maukhari and his successor, flourished just before the Maukhari Emperors, that is, he was Baladitya II, and further, that Jivita Gupta's and Adityasena's ancestors were not rulers of Magadha in the time of Baladitya and even in the Maukhari times. Their family in the Maukhari times was outside Magadha; for, the Maukharis were in direct possession of Deo-Barnark. The so-called Guptas of Magadha appear to have been local rulers in Bengal 'the separatist Gaudas for Madhava Gupta father of Adityasena defeated Susthita-

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varman, king of Kamarupa, and Adityasena's early inscription is found in Bhagalpur (GI, 211) and Gauda officials are noticeable in his Secretariate (GI,201).

To return to the Magadha line. Baladitya has the imperial title in the Deo-Barnark inscription (Paramesvara) . Events connected with his life seem to have taken a course like this. Bhanu Gupta Baladitya retired to Bengal under pressure from the Huns, in or following 510 A.D. His imprisoned son is set up as a pretender by Toramana, but really he does not become king, in that very year Toramana dies at Benares. There is some sort of peace between Bhanu Gupta and Mihirakula. Bhanu Gupta consolidates his power within the next fifteen years and then defies Mihirakula, and lures him into the swampy country of lower Bengal the marshes and island of Yuan Chwang and subjugates him. By his victory he keeps the tradition of his ancestors as the Emperor of India and confines Mihirakula in Kashmir which is included in Baladitya's overlordship.

Soon after 526 A.D. Baladitya dies. Mihirakula was still living and tyrannizing over his own countrymen in Kabul. At that time, on the imperial throne of Magadha, there was probably the ignominious son of Bhanu Gupta Baladitya, once a vassal of the Hun. This was a signal for the Hindus, to usher in a new state of affairs for their safety from foreign conquest. This leads to the advent of Yasodharman Vishnuvardhana of Thanesar with his Maukhari subordinates, about 530 A.D., i.e., before Mihirakula had had time to move towards the plains of India once more.

Prakataditya thus became a subordinate ruler under Yasodharman- Vishnuvardhana. According to the Sanskrit and the Tibetan Texts the interval between 606 A.D. the end of the reign of P. or Pra. and the end of Rajyavardhana's reign was as follows:

  • [King V[ajra] 7 days] : omitted in T.
  • [Ph., 3 years] :omitted in T.
  • V., his anuja, 3 years according to both S. and T. MMK.
  • Rajyavardhana, 1 year.

That is, the interval was of 4 or 7 years. This V.(Vajra) was the last ruler of the line which is also implied by Yuan Chwang who places the Mid-India king i.e., Harsha after him. A.D. 602 or 599 is thus the

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last date for Prakataditya. This fully agrees with the long reign assigned to Pra. by the MMK and the script of the inscription of Prakataditya. In script, it agrees with the script of the Apsad inscription of Adityasena. The MMK gives the king a long age (94 years) and implies a long reign; he came to the throne about 533 A.D. on the end of the son of the H (un) king, at an early age. He was 17 in or about 510 A.D., and in 530 A.D. he must have been about 37, he died at the age of 94, i.e., about 587 A.D. A further test is to be found in the fact mentioned by the MMK that Soma or Sasanka became Pra.'s rival. Pra. was a Buddhist and Soma a Brahmin. Sasanka would be Pra.'s contemporary according to the above dates.

Prakataditya saw many vicissitudes. First he came under the over-lordship of Yasodharman-Vishnuvardhana (c. 530-540 A,D.) and his family (550 A.D.); then we see the Maukhari Emperor Sarvavarman confirming a pious grant at Deo-Barnark (Shahabad) (about 570 A.D.), followed by his son Avantivarman, contemporary of Prabhakaravardhana. From c. 550 A.D. to 600 A.D. the Empire of Northern India was presided over by the Maukharis. The Maukharis may be dated approximately as follows:

  • Isanavarman, 530-554 A.D.
  • Sarvavarman, 554-570 A.D. (coin dated, GE, 234=554 A.D.).
  • Avantivarman, 570-600 A.D. (coin, 570 A.D.).
  • Grahavarman, 600-605 A.D.
  • [Suvrata, MMK, nominal].

The Maukharis who ruled from Kanauj on the unquestionable testimony of Bana, seems to have superseded the family of Vishnuvardhana about 550 A.D. in the time of Isanavarman who was the first Maukhari to assume the dignity of the emperor of Aryavarta or Northern India, towards the end of his reign. Isanavarman seems to have fought and defeated the Huns under Yasodharman in Yasodharman's northern campaigns. The reference in the Apsad inscription (GI., 203) to the Maukhari army which had defeated the Hunas, which killed Damodara Gupta, son of Kumara Gupta (III) of the Later Guptas, and which had been successfully opposed by Kumara Gupta (III) when Isanavarman led them against him, is to these very victorious crack troops of the Maukhari king who had fought against the Huns. These Later Guptas, as the MMK positively asserts, were Kings of 8

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the Gaudas who later on, from the time of Deva Gupta, (son of Adityasena) (s-26) became kings of Magadha, and were the gubernatorial family of Bengal and opposed the Maukhari invasion of the East on behalf of their overlord the main Gupta House in the person of Baladitya. By the time of Sarvavarman, the fight was over, and the issue already decided. The Maukhari became the acknowledged Paramesvara (Emperor), as the Deo-Barnark inscription of the Jivita Gupta II attests. The Sone seems to have become the boundary of the direct rule of the Maukharis in the reign of Sarvavarman, and Magadha from Patna eastwards and Bengal remained Gupta possessions under the suzerainty of the Maukharis. We find Mahasena Gupta, a contemporary of Sarvavarman or Avantivarman, victorious over Susthitavarman, king of Assam, where on the banks of the Lauhitya (Brahmaputra) songs were sung in later ages of Mahasena Gupta's victory. The MMK gives the Lauhitya as the boundary of the kingdom of Pra (kataditya) , and probably after the Gupta defeat at the hands of the Maukharis there was a conflict between the old Gupta over-lord and the king of Assam.

Isanavarman succeeded to the prestige and position of Vishnuvardhana-Yasodharman, as being the next most successful military leader in crushing the Hun power and liberating India from its terrors. Isanavarman definitely abolished the Imperial position of the Guptas in the reign of Prakataditya (c. 550 A.D.) which had already been very effectively questioned a few years before by Vishnuvardhana-Yasodharman (530-33 A.D.). It is from Prakataditya that the Later Guptas are to be counted. Up to his reign and the time of Rajyavardhana there were two lines one in Magadha and the other in Bengal, and the latter, after Harsha, from the reign of Adityasena, shifted to Magadha from Bengal and after the close of the House of Thanesar once more occupied the imperial position in northern India which is now made perfectly clear by our MMK. The recuperative power of the Guptas was phenomenal Art of war and the secret of civil administration seem to have been hereditary monopolies of this race of Vikramadityas and this series of Hindu Napoleons. Adityasena again became the Saklauttarapatha-Natha once more and repeated the feat of Samudra Gupta in reaching the South, up to the Chola country.

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The centre of Empire had, however, territorially changed from Eastern India to Madhyadesa in 530 A.D. The imperial seat in Magadha was too far removed from the north which was exposed to the new danger, the Huns. Yasodharman-Vishnuvardhana evidently belonged to Thanesar itself, the seat of Lord Sthanu, to whom alone that hero bent his head. In any case, he must have belonged to some place in the neighbourhood of Thanesar, if not to Thanesar itself. Then in descending line, at Kanauj (Panchala) was seated the Maukhari hero. At Thanesar, the subordinate family of Rajyavardhana I (c. 530 A.D.) just a generation before, was certainly situated. From the time of Isanavarman and Sarvavarman, Kanauj took the place of Pataliputra and became the seat of the empire of Northern India and came to be so known to the whole of India when the Maukhari (Jaunpur inscription, GI., 228) either Isanavarman or Sarvavarman established his position up to Kathiawad in the West and at least up to Andhra in the South. The successor of the Maukharis, Harshavardhana, fully established the position of Kanyakubja which lasted up to the time of Mahmud of Ghazni. In the generation following Adityasena, the revivor of the Gupta Imperialism, Kanauj in the person of Yasovarman contested the claim of the Gauda king of Magadha i.e. the Later Guptas of Magadha then represented by Deva Gupta II; and it was re-questioned, with the final suppression of the Gupta dynasty, in the next generation by Lalitaditya of Kashmir who claimed to be the lord of Kanauj, which meant at the time the Emperor of Northern India. That struggle and rivalry between Kanauj and Pataliputra or Magadha went down to the Pala period when Dharma Pala deposed and re-set up the king of Kanauj, and ended with the rise of the Pratihara Empire of Kanauj a generation later.

The MMK proceeds to deal at great length with the kingdom of Pra(kataditya) for whose reign the author seems to have had good material, like the details about the time of the dynasty of Harshavardhana.

It is a very important datum that after Rajyavardhana (that is, his House), the next emperor noted is Dha(rasena IV,646 -649 A.D.). He is called a descendant of (the family of) Rajyavardhana, evidently for the reason that he was the grandson and heir of Harshavardhana. His empire is described, and one more member of the latter's family, V. (?) is noted as the last emperor in this

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history. They are noted as All-India Emperors. The original caste of the dynasty was Kshatriya, according to the MMK (852).

Then in the Gauda system a branch of the family, to which Pra (kataditya) belonged, i.e., the Guptas, is re-established. The first king of this revived line was with the name Sri, probably Adityasena of the Later Guptas. He is said to have reached the age of 80 and was killed by a subordinate ruler. This subordinate Y(asovarman) became the unrivalled ruler for 8 years. The next king of the Pra. i.e., Later Gupta family, made a war and killed numerous men of this ex-feudatory. He himself, however, was worthless and was killed by his enemy who invaded him. This was probably Deva Gupta's son whose name is not recorded, for the latter's youngest brother R. ruled for 48 days. Vishnu Gupta Chandraditya's coins have Ru. His reign like that of Dvadasaditya who according to 26 ruled for a few months, was very short. Then comes the end of the dynasty, and the rise of Sudra king who was a cripple and ruled strongly and impartially and suppressed both Buddhist monks and Brahmins. He lived for 17 years. This ends the period and begins the rise of the Gopalas. The former Sudra king who is called here Svada in the Sanskrit text and Rajabhadra in Tibetan, is evidently the same Sudra king who had been elected before Gopala and ruled well but was a cripple, according to ss:27-29, 47. His initial, however, here is Bh. which supports the Tibetan reading Bhadra.

After closing the Later Gupta dynasty the MMK records the fact that kings of this dynasty which was a branch distinct from that of Pra (kataditya) that is, the main Gupta line, but which sprang from it, ceased to be independent with the end of K. i.e., Kumara Gupta III. We know from the Apsad and Deo-Barnark inscriptions that Isanavarman Maukhari took away the Imperial position from the Guptas. Prakataditya was in Magadha at the time and Kumara Gupta III was the king of Gauda under him. It seems that after Prakataditya became subordinate to Isanavarman, Kumara Gupta III assumed full sovereignty in Bengal. He certainly defeated Isanavarman and died a peaceful self-inflicted death at Prayaga in token of his successful career. In his time therefore he proved to be the leading monarch in Northern India. Isanavarman's imperial position is to be dated after Kumara Gupta's death. Thus the MMK marks the end

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of the Gupta Empire with the death of Kumara Gupta III.

In the history of Prakataditya, the Francis Joseph of the Gupta Period, many changes happened in the history of the dynasty and the country, most of which we have already noticed. The remaining matter is the defection of the 'traitorous' prince of the Vindhya country that is, Malwa. In Durga (which I am unable to identify) he, according to the Tibetan text, declared himself king. "The Gauda nation became split up". King Jaya, mahavisha, set himself up in the South-East, then followed Kesari (or Simha) , then king Soma. 'Jaya the mahavisha (great poison)' seems to be the Jayanaga of Karnasuvarna (कर्णसुवर्ण) (EI, XVIII, 60) who issued a copper-plate with the imperial title maharajadhiraja. It seems that the gubernatorial family of Malwa noted in the Mandasor inscription of 533 A.D. had been ousted and Malwa had been recovered by the Guptas in the time of Prakataditya.

Thus to sum up the history of the break-up of the Gupta Empire as gathered from the two sections of the MMK may be tabulated as below.

Table showing the Disruption of the Gupta Imperial Dynasty, the rise and fall of the Gauda Dynasty of the Later Guptas, and the Succession of Empires.
  • c. 500 A.D. Budha Gupta dies.
Succession of Tathagata Gupta.
Foundation of the Gauda 'Separatist' dynasty.
  • c. 500-510A.D. Succession of Bhanu Gupta Baladitya II.
  • c. 510 A.D. Battle of Airakina (Eran) between Bhanu Gupta (Baladitya) and the Huns (predecessor of Toramana or Toramana himself).
  • c. 511-512 A.D. Fall of Malwa. Toramana in Magadha. Retirement of Baladitya to Bengal. Toramana crowns the boy Prakataditya at Benares as king of Magadha, and dies at Benares.
  • c. 512-526 A.D. Mihirakula emperor of Northern India.
  • c. 527 A.D. Defeat and capture of Mihirakula in Bengal. Recovery of the Gupta Empire.
  • c. 527-529 A.D. Baladitya II builds a grand temple at Nalanda as a memorial to his victory (EI, XX. 37; Nalanda inscription, verse 6) .

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  • c. 530 A.D. Baladitya II retires as a Buddhist monk. Prakataditya succeeds as Emperor.
Prakataditya Period

[ C . 530-587 A.D.]

Succession of Empires

Imperial Dynasty of Vishnuvardhana
Gupta Imperial Revival
  • c. 535-550 Kumara Gupta III defeats Isanavarman and declares himself to be the Lord of the Three Oceans; burns himself about 550 A.D. at Allahabad.
The Maukhari Imperial Dynasty
  • c. 550-554 A.D. Isanavarman becomes Emperor.
  • c. 554-570 A.D. Sarvavarman acknowledged emperor both in the North and the South. Rajyavardhana I at Thanesar.
  • 570-600 A.D. Avantivarman. Gupta family of Malwa comes into existence. Prakataditya dies. Adityavardhana at Thanesar.
The Imperial Dynasty of Srikantha Thanesar
The Imperial Dynasty of Valabhi
  • c. 646-649 A.D. Dharasena IV, grandson of Harshavardhana succeeds to the Imperial position in 645 A.D. He is called chakravartin [3 years according to MMIC].
  • c.649 V. the youngest member of the family (MMK) succeeds [as Dhruvasena III] who was very old.
  • c.653 or 656 A.D. Dhruvasena III dies.

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Revival and fall of the Later Guptas of Gauda-Magadha
  • c. 656-700 A.D. Adityasena of the Gauda Guptas re-establishes an All-India Empire.
  • c. 700-720 A.D. Deva Gupta; probably killed by Yasovarman of Kanauj.
  • c. 720-728 A.D. Ya(sovarman) for 8 years [Emperor from Kanauj].
  • c. 728 A.D., c. 728-745 A.D. Chandraditya Vishnu Gupta in Magadha, 48 days. Dvadasaditya in Magadha. Gupta Rule ends in Bengal where Bbadra, the elected Sudra king, rules for 17 years, D. in Bengal, 10 days; Eh. in Bengal, 3 days.
  • c. 728-733 A.D., 733 A.D. Jivita Gupta II in Magadha, probably taken prisoner by the king of Kashmir (Lalitaditya) claiming Paramountcy in India. End of the Gauda dynasty.
  • c. 745 A.D. Election of G o p a 1 a.
  • c. 745-772 A.D. Gopala's reign.
  • c. 772 A.D. Paramountcy of the Pala Emperor.

We have thus a continuous Northern Empire up to the opening of the Pala Period.

Text (Continued)

39. Later Imperial Guptas and the Later Gupta Dynasty of Magadha from Bhdnu Gupta

c. 500 A.D. 550 A.D. Bh(anu Gupta)

His (Samudra Gupta's) descendant Bb. (Bhanu Gupta) settled in the East (Prachi) (760).


His son P. [Pra., T.] was born in the Eastern countries. He has been described [proktah] as the leading Kshatriya. He was imprisoned as a boy and remained in prison upto the age of 17 years. He had been imprisoned by king Gopa and was released at Bhagavat[pura].


The king called Gopa here is evidently the Goparaja, who fought so loyally by the side of Bhanu Gupta in a successful battle

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at Eran in 510 A.D., most obviously against Toramana. He was a subordinate ruler under Bhanu Gupta, and Pra. must have been put into prison by an order of Bhanu Gupta, his father.

The Battle of Eran was between the Huns and Bhanu Gupta. He evidently gave the enemy battle there having gone from Magadha with Gopa-raja.

40. Installation of Pra(kafaditya) by H.(Huna)

H. [T.] (Huna) [S. A], having come from the West, was a great king (mahanripah) . He occupied the banks of the Ganges upto the East. He was of Sudra caste, a Maharaja of large army and great power. From his base on the Ganges, from all sides he invaded the city of the Gaudas called Tirtha and remained there as a powerful king (763-65),

There that Kshatriya boy with a merchant (T.) entered at night, and was acknowledged at the dawn by the Sudra king', who then retired to Nandapura (Pataliputra) on the Ganges, and in Magadha installed that boy as king (766-67).

The powerful Sudra king entered the Kasi country (T.) and at Benares fell ill (768-69).


'H' is the reading in the Tibetan text in place of f 'A' in S. MMK.

H., the Sudra from the western country who invaded Magadha and Gauda, seems to have been the Huna Toramana. Later, in verse 777 he is described as having enjoyed kingdoms of others. By a writer of the time of Harshavardhana or rather of 700 A.D., the remnants of the Huns in India who had become part of the population and who have come down in several castes to our own times, would have been easily regarded as Sudras. Mlechchhas resident in India have been classed amongst Sudras.

Toramana has a good hereafter according to MMK (772-776). He does not seem to have been obnoxious to the Buddhists. According to verse 777 he enjoyed a kingdom which had been legally earned by others (parairuparjitam rajyam anubhokta bhavishyati) .

40-A The Planet (graha) (=Mihira) , son and successor of the H. Sudra

H. falling very ill crowned his son griha, a minor, and died. (769-771).

[The king's future career and effect of Buddhism described up to verse 767].

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The king will be the enjoyer of a kingdom which had been acquisitions of others. His son was established at Benares. The latter's kingdom will be lost on account of an attack from his neighbour. The kingdom will be full of Brahmins and will be attacked by enemies. This king marked as 'griha' was an erring man and arbitrary; and without much delay he was struck by enemy and died (777-779).


All haters of Buddhism have their names translated or otherwise concealed in the MMK, e.g., Sasanka is Soma, Pushyamitra is Gomi; so Mihira is 'planet' (graha) .

[See also Introduction to Part II above.]

41 Pra(kataditya) [c. 530 5 88 A.D.]

His Large Empire: Decline of the Gupta Empire

There will be mutual disunion in the Magadha monarchy in the East at the time of the rise of Soma. At that time on the Ganges up to Benares and beyond, there will be king P. (Pra, T.), the Kshatriya, who had been recognised by the Sudra king [Huna] at Nandanagara (Pataliputra) on the Ganges (780-82).

His past birth, good effects of Buddhist faith and charity, pious explanation of the kingship of Pr. etc. described, (783 813). Both in his previous birth and in this one his contemporary was Soma.

(Theological explanation of initial imprisonment and release, 820-21).

He rules for 55 years or 77 (822).

His empire. Benares-Bihar, Malwa, Punjab and hills :He will rule up to the sea in the East. Those situated in the valleys of the Vindhyas and the Mlechchha robbers on the frontiers will be under the control of P. All the provinces in the North and the valleys will be ruled by this Kshatriya king. (On account of his having raised unconsciously a toy-stupa in childhood) he will be an unrivalled king of Magadha, in the East up to the sea and the Forest (Atavi), up to the Lauhitya (Brahmaputra river), and in the North up to the Himalayas.

Later, this Buddhist king will be at Benares and alternately at Sringapura (814-818).

Conquest of Orissa. : Having conquered Pancha Kesari he established his own government (in Orissa). He overthrew and uprooted the Simha dynasty (of Orissa) (819- 20).

Then he, the Kshatriya king, rules all the countries in the Himalayan valleys in North-East up to the banks of the Dasanupa. (821).

The following passage (after verse, 829) omitted in the Sanskrit text is found in the Tibetan: 9

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Defection of Province: The traitorous ones of the interior of the Vindhyas [Malwa ?] set themselves up as independent rulers in the middle tract called Inaccessible durga (829A)

Jaya the serpent (Jayanaga) conquered the people of the South-East.

Kesari (Lion) and another named Soma (Satinka) became kings (829B) ,(This) led to the division of the Gauda nation. This is to happen in the time of that Kshatriya sovereign (829C).

Born in prosperity the king had luxuries up to his dotage. He will live for 94 years, and die of sheer old age (830-31). (Future career described, 832-840).

42. Successors of Pra.

In that Low Age after P., there was confusion by his servants (omitted in T.) ; V. was king for one week, he was killed (843; omitted in T.). After P., Eh. became king for 3 years (844) (omitted in T.).

His (P's) younger brother (or, descendant) V. (Vajra) solemnly became king, he ruled for 3 years (845).

43. Rajyavardhana II (of Thanesar) as ruler of Magadha

And Rajyavardhana will be king for 1 year (845). Both these kings (V. and Rajyavardhana) had sudden and unnatural ending. (846).

44. Heir and successors of Rajyavardhana as ruler of Magadha (-Gauda)

Emperors of Valabhi

His (Rajyavardhana' s) descendant (anuja, heir, born after him) will be Dh(arasena IV), a Kshatriya (by caste), fond of dharma (Buddhism). He will be king for 3 years [847-48], Then the youngest (in) his (family) will be king, the famous V. [T. MMK: J.]. He will be over the whole country an All-India Emperor (Sarva-bhumika-bhuptih). He will possess (an army of), elephants, horses and chariots, and navy, everywhere.

He will conquer every enemy. He will decorate the whole empire with Buddha images, monasteries and relic-memorials. His original ancestry was Dvijati Sakya (Ikshvaku) (449-52).

He was self-respecting, sharp, wise, humble, on account of Buddhist wisdom, with sense of honour, and in that low age attained happiness. He lives with care for 100 years and 5 (days) (853-55).

Comments on s:42-44

The Lauhitya country which was reconquered by Mahasena Gupta had been annexed to Gauda under the reign of Prakataditya.

The Gauda-tantra, rendered by me as Gauda-system seems to hare been made up of Bihar-Bengal-Orissa-and-Assam.

On the decline see the Introduction above. The Vindhya country,

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Karnasuvarna and other parts of Bengal, Orissa, and Assam seem to have broken off in the latter days of Prakataditya.

From the time of Kumara Gupta III whose copper-plate of Damodarpur is dated GE, 224=544 A.D. (EI., 17. 193) was a 'Separatist Gauda' to break off from Prakataditya and to have set up his own independence and assumed imperial titles. It should be recalled here that the MMK regards him the only independent king among the Later Guptas. The Maukharis did not succeed to the Imperial position up to 554 A.D.

On $ 43-44. Rajyavardhana is regarded as the direct ruler after the death of Prakataditya and his successors (6 or 7 years) . Hence Prakataditya may have come to the throne about 10 years later than I have supposed and Vajra may have come before him. Or, Rajyavardhana might have been governor of Benares in his father's life-time. According to the Sarnath inscription Prakataditya was a son of Baladitya and according to Yuan Chuang, Vajra was son and successor of Baladitya. According to the MMK, Pra.'s younger brother V. succeeded him, and that Pra. became king after the death of Graha (Mihira, i.e., after 533 A.D.). It is difficult to decide whether Vajra preceded or succeeded Prakataditya.

Rajyavardhana had his successor in Harsha; and Dh., that is, Dharasena IV his grandson was really Harsha's anuja or descendant in which sense the MMK always uses the term. According to the Mitakshara idea of Hindu Law, Dharasena IV would be considered a successor and descendant of Rajyavardhana. It is difficult to give value to the initial V. or J. (Tibetan version) of the successor of Dh. but the description leaves little doubt that it was Dhruvasena III, 'the youngest' of his grand-uncles, all elder to Dharasena's own grandfather. The long age (100 years) confirms the identification.

It is noteworthy that the Valabhi kings maintained a navy.

Dharasena IVi nthe year 546 A.D. issued two copper-plates; in the earlier of the two in the same Kartikadi year (326 GE.) he is not chakrwartin (Emperor), while a few months after he assumed that title (Bhandarkar's List, No. 1348, No. 1349). We should therefore conclude that his grandfather Harshavardhana died between the month of Magha (5th, Dark Fortnight) and Ashadha (S., 10) . By that tide he claimed to be the heir to the Empire of Harshavardhana and something more, that is, as the Emperor of the South.

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Evidently Dharasena IV sent governors to the East, or Madhava Gupta or Adityasena accepted the suzerainty of the Valabhi emperors. Adityasena evidently started his reign as a subordinate to the Valabhi Emperor. Adityasena who performed three Asvamedhas and reached the shores of the seas must be taken to have broken the claim of the Valabhi Emperor to the title of chakravartin.

This record about the succession of the grandson of Harsha discounts the story of the usurpation of 'Arjuna', minister of Harsha of the Chinese account. The story is much exaggerated. 'Arjuna' seems to have set himself up as the local ruler of Tirhut and was easily defeated by a tiny army.

45. Later Guptas

(a) King Sri

After him, in the Gauda system there will be a king with the name Sri, a maharaja, and lover of dharma. His capital will be V., a populous first class capital. Having conquered his neighbouring rivals he will rule there. Seven and eight monasteries he 'built' there. His minister was Sakaja, a Brahmin, with his help he ruled all around. He lived for 81 years. (856-59). He had a good career in heaven, as he was of religious soul, and whatever condition be brought about was only due to the fault of his servants. (860-61).

His feudatory (or servant) as sovereign Y. by name will have an unquestioned rule for 8 years. He was killed by women (853-54). Again (b) a Kshatriya dynast of the P.-dynasty will become king.


King Sri with whom the family of 'Pa.-Vamsa' begins is Sri Adityasena, son of Srimati and Madhava Gupta. This identity is established by his successors, who in 26 are Deva Gupta, Vishnu Gupta Chandraditya and Dvadasaditya, while here ($46) they are R.'s elder brother and R. who is identical with Vishnu Gupta. In place of Deva Gupta here the rule of Y, a feudatory who became the master, is given. This seems to be Yasovarman (see below) . Yasovarman's rule in Magadha is proved by the Nalanda stone inscription of his minister Malada (EI XX. 43). Yasovarman supplanted Deva Gupta who in 26 is said to have been surrounded by his enemies and killed. The Nalanda inscription and the Gaudwaho, composed in the reign of Yasovarman, now read with the MMK, would indicate that the king, who was killed in battle on the Sone and who is called here both the king of Gauda and the

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king of Magadha, was Deva Gupta of the Gauda dynasty of the Guptas.

The age of the king Sri , 81 years, shows that the king was the old king Adityasena who had performed three Asvamedbas and had a long reign. The later kings of the dynasty were all short-lived. The last apology for the king refers to his Brahmanic rule and sacrifices. The Buddhists were greatly pleased with Adityasena. His capital bore the initial V.; was it Varunika (Deo-Barnark) (GI 216) ?

The statement (48) that Kumara Gupta (III) was the last independent ruler of the dynasty would indicate that probably in his last days Adityasena was defeated by the Chalukyas about 694 A.D. Vinayaditya who ruled up to 656 A.D. and in that year was succeeded by his son Vijayaditya (Kielhorn, EI VIII. App. II. 2), defeated through his Crown-Prince Vijayaditya between 680 A.D. (the date of his accession) and 694 A.D. (the date of his death) the Emperor of All-Northern India (cf. IA, Vol. VIII. 26). About 680-694 A.D. Adityasena, the asvamedhin, was undoubtedly the Emperor (Natha) of sakala-Uttarapatha. The description might as well refer to his son Deva Gupta as his imperial successor. That it refers to the king of Magadha is established by the fact that the imperial insignia of the Ganga and Yamuna flags were captured from the Northern emperor. These emblems had belonged to the Vakatakas and are described as paramesvarya-chinha, 'emblems of imperialism', in the Chalukya documents. They descended to the Guptas from the Vakatakas.

The chronology proposed above in the Introduction is confirmed by the account of Hwui Lun (IA., X. 110) who visited Magadha about 690 A.D. He found a temple under construction by Jih-kwan (sun-army = Adityasena) . In this temple the people from the South were to reside. It is remarkable that the temple mentioned before this was the Chalukya temple, which was probably raised as a memorial by the Chalukya Vijyaditya in the heart of his enemy's kingdom. It was about 40 stages west of Nalanda. Adityasena was dead at the time and 'Devavarma' that is, Deva-Gupta' was ruling as 'the king of Eastern India' (Prachi). The approximate time of the visit of Hwui Lun may be gathered in this way. Itsing extracted this account. Itsing died in 713 A.D. Hwui Lun was sent out by the Chinese Emperor to follow the steps of and to attend on

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Yuan-chau, a Chinese pilgrim, who had left for India a second time in 665 A.D. Yuan-chau had tarried in Dardistan for 4 years and then came to Magadha and died in Central India. Hwui Lun did not meet him, and lived for 10 years in a convent in the North and then came to Magadha. Thus if Yuan-chau died about 670 A.D., Hwui Lun reached Magadha later than 680 A.D. or later still. Deva Gupta had come to the throne and was reigning about 685-690 A.D. and he certainly flourished before 713 A.D., the date of the death of Itsing. The temple begun by his father was being finished and there had been no interruption in the dynastic regime up to that time.

The identity of Y. is established on the basis of the facts stated to wit that he was an outsider who interposed for 8 years, that Yasovarman did rule in Magadha on the authority of the Nalanda inscription, and that he killed a king of Magadha-Gauda in the battle of the Sone, according to the Gaudavaho. Under Adityasena he must have been considered a subordinate to the Gauda (Later Gupta) Dynasty. According to Hwui Lun, Deva was reigning about 700 A.D. Yasovarman's rise dates a little after 700 A.D. According to the other section (26) Deva (Gupta) was surrounded by enemy forces and killed. We are therefore justified in placing Deva Gupta immediately after Adityasena, and treating him as the king killed by Yasovarman.

It is to be marked that Y. is not treated as an Emperor. His attempt to establish himself as emperor did fail. He was defeated by Lalitaditya, but not slain as supposed by V. Smith (EHI, 392) for Kalhana says that Yasovarman attended his court as a poet-courtier after his defeat. His sending an embassy to China in 731 A.D. seems to have followed his defeat at the hands of Lalitaditya, for Lalitaditya himself was under the acknowledged suzerainty of China and Yasovarman would naturally seek the moral support of the Chinese Emperor after his defeat by his protege.

It seems that Yasovarman was ousted from Magadha before 731 A.D., probably at the time of his Kashmir defeat, which should be dated before 731 A.D.

46. P.'s dynasty [restored]

He ['of the P. -dynasty'] killed the ministers (or, supporters of that feudatory)

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He was senseless on account of his prestige, taking steps in a huny, unsteady, a drinker of wine, fond of rogues. He was lying on the ground drunk, and was killed by enemies (864-66).

(c) His only brother K. was king for 48 days (867). He gave money to Brahmins and passed time.


R.'s identity with Vishnu Gupta Chandraditya is already discussed in the Introduction above. The genealogy there is as following:

Deva Gupta
The unnamed king of MMK.- Vishnu Gupta (Ru., coins)
Vishnu Gupta (Ru., coins)
Dvadasaditya - Jivita Gupta II

This section is not giving the name of Dvadasaditya. Vishnu Gupta (R.) is treated as the last king in Bengal proper. Dvadasaditya, in any case, ruled only for a few months. It is evident that it was either Dvadasaditya or Jivita Gupta who was captured by Lalitaditya of Kashmir and taken there as a prisoner. It is more likely that it was Jivita Gupta II, for Dvadasaditya died as a boy, and the Gauda king captured by Lalitaditya had twice taken up arms against Lalitaditya. Lalitaditya was invested with royalty by the Emperor of China in 733 A.D. Lalitaditya undertook a digvijaya according to the Rajatarangini, which was generally done on accession. This date agrees with the dates we pproximately get from the MMK for the close of the Gauda Gupta Dynasty.

47. A Sudra king in Gauda

After him Sva, will be king (868). He will be a Sudra by caste, a cripple, low, non-religious, ill-tempered, and quarrelsome. He destroys Brahmin feudal lords, recluses of good-conduct, and others. He will be always busy in maintaining law and order (nigraha). His dministration will be sharp, he will be the killer of thieves, forbidder of all rascals practising religious hypocricy. He will be a freedom-giver and will be a donor. He will rule for 17 years. He dies of leprosy (869-73). [Then follows his future career in the hereafter (847-75)].

This is the history of the past Eastern kings, the lokavardhanas, and known to everyone. (875).


The Sva. is the same cripple as described in 47 above, who had

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been a popular Bengali leader elected to kingship. He seems to have been a successful, impartial ruler, though peevish and inclined to be idealistic. With ill health, persistent executive capacity, and doctrinaire temperament this ancient Bengali politician served his country well for 17 years.

48. The constitutional position of the Later Guptas, the Gauda Dynasty

A note on Emperor K(umara Gupta III)

Under king P. (Pra.) there will be a king, a descendent of another family branching off from the dynasty of P(ra), a Kshatriya, very brave, an emperor of the three Seas. In this East Country he will be of large army and great power. He will beautify the earth with shining monasteries having relics of the Buddha, resthouses and temples, with gardens, various stepped wells, wells, pavilions, roads, and free-kitchen hotels.

He was a devotee of the Buddhas, took to the good Yana (Mahayana), and led the life of a Sakya monk, declining gifts, though making gifts. He was known by the name of K., a learned man and knowing tradition. He ruled for 21 years, and died of cholera. (876-82).

His descendants became subordinate rulers (874).


All what is said about K's position is verified from inscriptions about Kumara Gupta III. The Gauda Guptas called themselves "the dynasty of Gauda". This is evident from contemporary records the Gandavaho and inscriptions. Kumara Gupta III and Aditya-sena were the only truly paramount sovereigns in the line. Why Adityasena is not counted in the line as a paramount king is probably due to his defeat by the Chalukyas. The Chalukya temple-hostel and his undertaking to build a temple-hostel for the Southerners imply the Chalukya domination in the last days of Adityasena.

49. The Pala Dynasty

Then the Gopalas will be king who will be of the menial caste, and the people will be miserable with Brahmins. The Buddha's doctrine having been lost, the time will be irreligious (883-84). [Necessary mantras prescribed], [See next section].

50. Religious Practice in the East, South, Insulindia and Further India

Then by mantra system (magical formulas) serve the people (884). [Directions

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about Tara (तारा) worship etc. follow for the East, the Dakshinapatha and the Islands in the sea , for Harikela, Karmaranga, Kamarupa and Kalasa, up to verse 894],


Insulindia and Further India come here in the Southern system. "The Dvipas in the middle of the Sea" were inhabited by Mlechchhas and pirates (taskara) (899).

57. Madhyadesa

In Madhyadesa there will be various Kings and Ministers, weak and of little intelligence. 'A brief notice of the main kings is being given as follows?. (903-912).

  • M. (.Ś, in T.), N., P. (Pra., in T.), D., I., S. (not in T.), A.,
  • Graha (not in T.), Kirti (not in T.), H., then 5. (B. in T.).
  • J., B., L., Soma; H. (Dh., in T.), then A. (905-907).
  • S. and L. and Stri. (will be) haters of the people;
  • S. (A. in T.) and M. will be lords of men (or causing prosperity to men) :

they will be respectively Krimi, Brahmins and Vaisyas, doers of irreligious deeds, hated, and fond of women (909). The kings will have large numbers of dependants (relations) in that low age, in Madhyadesa (910).

The middlings, best ones, intermediary ones, and the lowest have been mentioned.

They will be of short life (912).

52. Miscellaneous Tracts

On the river Ganges, on the table-land of the Himalayas and in Kamarupa, there will be similar kings (913).

The kings of Angadesa for the periods first, middle and last are now related. In the beginning there (will be) Vrita-sudhana; he (will be called Karmaraja. The last Anga king will be Subhuti-Bhuti, an Anga (914-915).

In Kamarupa the kings will be Sadaha and Bhavada, the casteless (915).

At Vaisali there will be Subhu, Mriga and Kumara as the last ones and the two Vs' (916).

At Kapilapura where the Sage was born there (were) the pure-minded Sakyajas, descending from Aditya-Iksha (that is Suryavamsa Ikshvakus) . The last (was) Suddhodana the Sakya, amongst the Sakyavardhanas (917).

(The magical manras appropriate for Madhyadesa are mentioned up to 924).

S 53. The Scheme of Royal History summed up

Numerous kings have been related, belonging to


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Vest, East, South and minor directions (vidikshu) everywhere, and outside, the Islands divided into four (825-26).

Numerous kings and mantra-processes have been related according to quarters (927).

(According to time, place and rulers, Mantras have been prescribed (928-31).

All the kings have been described according to the quarters (924).


This ends the dynastic history. Then follow the notices of political monks, Brahmins and other citizens, and religious and social leaders.

End of Chapter Gauda and Magadha Provincial History

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