|Author:Laxman Burdak, IFS (R)|
Bilsad (बिलसड़) is a town in Aliganj tahsil of Etah district in Uttar Pradesh. Piloshana was one of the Buddhist places visited by Xuan Zang in 636 AD. The place Piloshana has been identified with modern Bilsadh in Aliganj tahsil, district Etah of Uttar Pradesh.
- Bilasad (बिलसड़), जिला एटा, उ.प्र., (AS, p.630)
- Bilsar Patti
- Bilsarh Pachhayan
- Bilsarh Puwayan
- Vilasana (विलासना) दे. Bilsadh बिलसड़ (AS, p.862)
- Pi-lo-shan-na (पिलोशना) (Xuanzang)
- Piloshana (पिलोशना) (AS, p.630)
Bilsar Patti is a Village in Aliganj Block in Etah District of Uttar Pradesh State, India. It is located 62 km towards East from District head quarters Etah. 7 km from Aliganj Dehat. Bilsar Patti Pin code is 207244 and postal head office is Raja Ka Rampur. Angadpur ( 1 KM ) , Bilsarh Puwayan ( 1 KM ) , Chandanpur ( 2 KM ) , Bilsarh A Pachhayan ( 2 KM ) , Tajpur Addha ( 2 KM ) are the nearby Villages to Bilsar Patti. This Place is in the border of the Etah District and Farrukhabad District. Farrukhabad District Kaimganj is East towards this place. 
The earliest inscription of Kumara Gupta I, seems to be that on the Bilsad monolithic of red sand-stone dated 415-16 AD. Bilsad is a village consisting of three parts in Eta district of the United Provinces. The two inscribed pillars at Bilsad seem to have had a direct connection with a temple, now ruined. The object of the inscription is to record the accomplishment of a temple of Kartikeya, its pratoli, and the establishment of a Satra. It also gives the genealogy of the Gupta sovereign.
Kumara Gupta started his imperial career peacefully, but it ended in disaster, he had been bequeathed, by his noble and great father, the glorious heritage of the vast and well-administered Gupta Empire, and consequently the earlier part of Kumara Gupta I's long rule was by far the most prosperous period in the whole history of the Gupta dynasty. He is described, by the Manju-sri-mulakalpa, as by no means 'a weak king', but an 'excellent and leading' sovereign. Kumara Gupta I's extensive coinage and the wide distribution of his inscriptions and of the find-spots of his silver coins clearly indicate that he was able to retain intact his father's empire including the western provinces, under him. The Gadhwa stone inscription of Kumara Gupta I, is engraved immediately below the inscription of Chandra Gupta II, separated by a line across the stone. The inscription is badly damaged and no date, except the day, is available. Neither the religion, nor the object of this inscription can be determined, the only act to be gleaned therefrom being that a gift of ten dinaras and an uncertain amount was given for a Satra. The other Gadhwa inscription of Kumara Gupta I, which also is badly broken gives the date 417-18 AD. The earliest inscription of Kumara Gupta I, seems to be that on the Bilsad monolithic of red sand-stone dated 415-16 AD.
विजयेन्द्र कुमार माथुर ने लेख किया है .....बिलसड़ (AS, p.630), एटा ज़िला, उत्तर प्रदेश का ऐतिहासिक स्थान है। इस स्थान पर गुप्त सम्राट कुमारगुप्त के शासन काल 96 गुप्तसंवत (=415 ई.) का एक स्तंभ-लेख प्राप्त हुआ है। यहाँ से प्राप्त स्तंभ-लेख में ध्रुवशर्मन द्वारा, स्वामी महासेन (कार्तिकेय) के मंदिर के विषय में किए गए कुछ पुण्य कार्यों का विवरण है- सीढ़ियों सहित प्रतोली या प्रवेशद्वार का निर्माण, सत्र या दान-शाला की स्थापना और अभिलेख वाले स्तंभ का निर्माण। संभवत: चीनी यात्री युवानच्वांग ने इस स्थान का 'पिलोशना' या 'विलासना' नाम से उल्लेख किया है। युवानच्वांग इस स्थान पर 642-643 ई. में आया था।
विजयेन्द्र कुमार माथुर ने लेख किया है ...अतरंजी खेड़ा (AS, p.18 ) उत्तर प्रदेश के एटा ज़िलांतर्गत गंगा की सहायक काली नदी के तट पर स्थित एक प्रागैतिहासिक स्थल है। इस नगर की नींव डालने वाला राजा बेन कहा जाता है जिसके विषय में रूहेलखण्ड में अनेक लोककथाएं प्रचलित हैं. कहा जाता है कि राजा बेन ने मुहम्मद ग़ोरी को उसके कन्नौज-आक्रमण के समय परास्त किया था किंतु अंत में बदला लेकर ग़ोरी ने राजा बेन को हराया और उसके नगर को नष्ट कर दिया। एक ढूँह के अन्दर से हजरत हसन का मक़बरा निकला था- जो इस लड़ाई में मारा गया था।
कुछ लोगों का कहना है कि अंतरंजी खेड़ा वही प्राचीन स्थान है जिसका वर्णन चीनी यात्री युवानच्वांग ने पिलोशना या विलासना नाम से किया है किंतु यह धारणा ग़लत सिद्ध हो चुकी है। यह दूसरा स्थान बिलसड़ नामक प्राचीन नगर था जो एटा से 30 मील दूर है। किन्तु फिर भी अंतरंजी खेड़े के पूर्व-मुसलमान काल का नगर होने में कोई संदेह नहीं है क्योंकि यहां के विशाल खंडहरों के उत्खनन में, जो एक विस्तृत टीले के रूप में हैं (टीला 3960 फुट लम्बा, 1500 फुट चौड़ा और प्राय: 65 फुट ऊंचा है) शुंग, कुषाण और गुप्तकालीन मिट्टी की मूर्तियां, सिक्के, ठप्पे, ईंटों के टुकड़े आदि बड़ी संख्या में प्राप्त हुए हैं।
खंडहर के एक सिरे पर एक शिवमंदिर के अवशेष हैं जिसमें पांच शिवलिंग हैं। इनमें एक नौ फुट ऊंचा है। टीले की रूपरेखा से जान पड़ता है कि इसके स्थान पर पहले एक विशाल नगर बसा हुआ था।
Visit by Xuanzang in 636 AD
Alexander Cunningham writes that from Ahi-chhatra the Chinese pilgrim Xuanzang proceeded in a south direction a distance of from 200 to 270 li, from 23 to 25 miles, to the Ganges, which he crossed, and then turning to the south-west he arrived in the kingdom of Pi-lo-shan-na His route to the south -would have taken him through Aonla and Budaon to the Budh Gunga (or old Ganges), somewhere near Sahawar, a few miles below Soron, both of which places stood on the main stream of the Ganges so late as 400 years ago. As his subsequent route is said to have been to the south-west, I believe that he must have crossed the Ganges close to Sahawar, which is 42 miles from Ahi-chhatra in a direct line. From all my early inquiries I was led to believe that Soron was the only ancient place in this vicinity ; and as Hwen Thsang does not give any distance for his south-west march, I concluded that Soron must have been the place to which he gives the name of Pi-lo-shan-na. I accordingly visited Soron, which is undoubtedly a place of very great antiquity, but which cannot, I think, be the place visited by the Chinese pilgrim. I will, however, first describe Soron before I proceed to discuss the superior claims of the great ruined mound of Atranji-Khera to be identified with the Pi-lo-shan-na of the Chinese pilgrim.
Soron is a large town on the right, or western, bank of the Ganges, on the high-road between Bareli and Mathura. The place was originally called Ukala Kshetra ; but after the demon Hiranyaksha had been killed by the Varaha Avatar, or Boar incarnation of Vishnu, the name was changed to Sukara Kshetra, or
[p.365]: " the place of the good deed." The ancient town is represented by a ruined mound called the Kilah, or " fort," which is one quarter of a mile in length from north to south, and somewhat less in breadth. It stands on the high bank of the old bed of the Ganges, which is said by some to have flowed immediately under it so late as 200 years ago. The modern town stands at the foot of the old mound on the west and south sides, and probably contains about 5000 inhabitants. There are no dwellings on the old mound, which is occupied only by the temple of Sita-Ramji and the tomb of Shekh Jamul ; but it is covered with broken bricks of large size, and the foundations of walls can be traced in all directions. The mound is said to be the ruins of a fort built by Raja Somadatta of Soron many hundred years ago. But the original settlement of the place is very much older, being attributed to the fabulous Raja Vena Chakravartti who plays such a conspicuous part in all the legends of North Bihar, Oudh, and Rohilkhand.
The great mound of ruins called Atranji-Khera is situated on the right or west bank of the Kali Nadi four miles to the south of Karsana, and eight miles to the north of Eyta on the Grand Trunk Road. It is also 15 miles to the south of Soron, and 43 miles to the north-west of Sankisa in a direct line, the road distance being not less than 48 or 50 miles. In the ' Ayin Akbari' Atranji is recorded as one of the parganahs of Kanoj, under the name of Sikandarpur Atreji Sikandarpur, which is now called Sikandrabad, is a village on the left bank of the Kali Nadi opposite Atranji. From this it would appear that Atranji was
[p.366]: still occupied in the reign of Akbar. The parganah was afterwards called Karsana, bat it is now known by the name of Sahawar Karsana, or of Sahawar only. The name given by the Chinese pilgrim is Pi-lo-shan-na, for which M. Julien proposes to read Virasana.
So far back as 1848 I pointed out that, as both. pil and kar are Sanskrit names for an elephant, it was probable that Pilosana might be the same as Karsana, the large village which I have already mentioned as being four miles to the north of Atranji Khera. The chief objection to this identification is the fact that Karsana is apparently not a very old place, although it is sometimes called Deora Karsana, a name which implies the possession of a temple of note at some former period. It is, however, possible that the name of Karsana may once have been joined to Alranji in the same way that we find Sikandarpur Atreji in the ' Ayin Akbari.' As the identification oi Karsana with Pilosana is purely conjectural, it is useless to hazard any more speculations on this subject. The bearing and distance from Sankisa, as recorded by Hwen Thsang, point to the neighbourhood of Sirpura, near which there is a small village called Pilkuni or Pilokuni, which is the Pilukhoni of our maps. It is, however, a very petty place ; and although it boasts of a small khera, or mound of ruins, it cannot, I think, have ever been more than one-fourth of the circuit of two miles which Hwen Thsang attributes to Pi-lo-shan-na. But there are two strong points in its favour — namely, 1st, its position, which agrees both in bearing and distance with the Chinese pilgrim's account ; and 2nd, its name, which is almost identical with the old name, sh being very commonly pronounced as kh, so that Hwen
In proposing Atranji-Khera as the site of the ancient Piloshana, I am influenced solely by the fact that this is the only large place besides Soron of any antiquity in this part of the country. It is true that the distance from Sankisa is somewhat greater than that recorded by the Chinese pilgrim, — namely, 45 miles, instead of 33 miles ; but the bearing is exact ; and as it is quite possible that there may be some mistake in Hwen Thsang's recorded distance, I think that Atranji-Khera has a better claim than any other place to be identified with the ancient Piloshana.
The only objection to the identification of Atranji with Piloshana is the difference between the distance of 200 li, or 33 miles, as stated by Hwen Thsang, and the actual distance of 43 miles direct, or about 48 or 50 miles by road. I have already suggested the possibility of there being some mistake in the recorded distance of Hwen Thsang, but perhaps an equally probable explanation may be found in the difference of the length of the yojana. Hwen Thsang states that he allowed 40 Chinese li to the yojana ; but if the old yojana of Rohilkhand differed from that of the central Doab as much as the kos of these districts now differ, his distances would have varied by half a mile in every kos, or by two miles in every yojana, as the Rohilkhand kos is only 1½ mile, whilo that of the Doab is two miles; the latter being one-third greater. Now if we apply this difference to Hwen Thsang's measurement of 200 li, or 33 miles, we increase the distance at once to 44 miles, which agrees with the direct measured distance on the map. I confess, however, that I am
[p.368]: rather inclined to believe in the possibility of there being a mistake in Hwen Thsang's recorded distance, as I find exactly the same measurement of 200 li given as the distance between [[Sankisa] and Kanoj. Now, the two distances are precisely the same, — that is, Sankisa is exactly midway between Atranji and Kanoj ; and as the latter distance is just 50 miles by my measurement along the high-road, the former must also be the same. I would therefore suggest the probability that both of these distances should be 300 li, or 50 miles, instead of 200 li, as recorded in the text. In favour of this proposed correction I may cite the testimony of the earlier Chinese pilgrim Fa-Hian, who makes the distance from Sankisa to Kanoj 7 yojanas, or 49 miles. At Hwen Thsang's own valuation of 40 li to the yojana, this measurement would give 280 li; and as Fa-Hian does not record half yojanas, we may increase the distance by half a yojana, or 20 li, which will bring the total up to 300 li, or 50 miles.
But whatever may be the true explanation of the difference between the actual distances and those recorded by Hwen Thsang, there still remains the important fact that Sankisa was exactly midway between Kanoj and Piloshanna, just as it now is midway between Kanoj and Atranji. If we couple this absolute identity of position with the fact that Atranji is the only old place in the part of the country indicated by Hwen Thsang, we can scarcely arrive at any other conclusion than that the great ruined mound of Atrauji is the site of the ancient Piloshana. This conclusion is strengthened by the fact that the mound of Atranji correspunds almost exactly in size with
[p.369]: Hwen Thsang's measurement of 12 li, or 2 miles, for Piloshana. The mound is 3250 feet in breadth at base, or a little more than 2 miles in circuit. Its highest point is 44-3/4 feet above the level of the country ; but there are no remains save the foundations of walls and masses of broken brick.
Piloshana is said to have been 2000 li, or 333 miles, in circuit ; but this is certainly too great. With reference to the surrounding districts, its limits may be defined approximately as extending from Bulandshahar to Firuzabad on the Jumna and Kadirganj on the Ganges, which would give a circuit of not more than 250 miles.
- (Line 6.)-In the ninety-sixth year, (and) in the augmenting victorious reign of the Mahârâjâdhirâja, the glorious Kumâragupta,-
- (L. 5.)-Who is the son, begotten on the Mahâdêvî Dhruvadêvî, of the Mahârâjâdhirâja, the glorious Chandragupta (II.), who was himself without an antagonist (of equal power); who was a most devout worshipper of the Divine One; (and)
- (L. 4.)-Who was the son, begotten on the Mahâdêvî Dattadêvî, of the Mahârâjâdhirâja, the glorious Samudragupta,--
- (L. 1.)- [Who was the exterminator of all kings; who had no antagonist (of equal power) in the world]; whose fame was tasted by the waters [of the four oceans]; [who was equal to (the gods) Dhanada and Varuna and Indra and Antaka; who was the very axe of (the god) Kritânta]; who was the giver of [many] millions of [lawfully acquired cows and] gold; who was the restorer of the ashvamêdha-sacrifice, that had been long in abeyance; (and)
- (L. 3.)- [Who was the son of the son's son of the Mahârâja, the illustrious Gupta;-the son's son of the Mahârâja, the illustrious Ghatôtkacha];-(and) the son of the Maharajadhiraja, the glorious Chandragupta (I.), (and) the daughter's son of Lichchhavi, begotten on the Mahâdêvî Kumâradêvî;
- (L. 7.)- On this (lunar day), (specified) as above by the day (&c.),-at this temple of the divine (god) Svâmi-Mahâsêna, whose wondrous form is covered over with the accumulation of the lustre of the three worlds ; who is the god Brahmanya; (and) who resides at . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .,-this great work has been accomplished by Dhruvasharman, who follows the path of the customs of the Krita age, and of the true religion, (and) who is honoured by the assembly . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
- (L. 10.)-- Having made a gateway, charming, (and) . . . . . . . . . the abode of saints, (and) having the form of a staircase leading to heaven, (and) resembling a (pearl)-necklace of the kind called kaubêrachchhanda, (and) white with the radiance of pieces o f crystalline gems;-(and having made), in a very proper manner, a [religious] almshouse(?), the abode of those who are eminent in respect of virtuous qualities; resembling in form the top part of a temple;-he, the virtuous-minded one, roams in a charming manner among the items of religious merit (that he has thus accumulated); may the venerable Sharman endure for a long time!
- (L. 12.)-This lofty pillar, firm and excellent, has been caused to be made by that same Dhruvasharman, whose piety, having acquired the excellent reputation of nectar . . . . . . . . . . . . . on the earth, is so highly esteemed by all perfect beings that there is no one who would fail to worship him; (and) by whom . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . by means of the abundance of (his) unprecedented accumulation of superhuman power.
- From: Fleet, John F. Corpus Inscriptionum Indicarum: Inscriptions of the Early Guptas. Vol. III. Calcutta: Government of India, Central Publications Branch, 1888, 44-45.
- Aitihasik Sthanavali by Vijayendra Kumar Mathur, p.630
- Aitihasik Sthanavali by Vijayendra Kumar Mathur, p.18
- The Ancient Geography of India/Piloshana, p.364-369
- Julien's 'Hiouen Thsang,' ii. 235. See Map No. X.
- Gladwyn gives " Secunderpoor Aterchhy," ii. 214.
- Beal's ' Fa-Hian,' chap. xviii.