H.C.Raichaudari’s book – political history of ancient India.

D.C.Sircar characterized the medieval period as landlordism.

B.D.Chattopadyaya gave the integrated model for the medieval period.

Burton Stein, called it segmentary state system.


1. Political decentralisaton.

2. Emeregence of landed intermediateries linked to the practice of land grant which began with the satavahanas.
The secular recipients of the grants and the autonomous holders of land are generally termed as “fief holders” and “free holders”.

3. Naturalisation of economy

4. Subject of the peasantry
The earliest example of share croppers being transferred along with the land can be traced in the 3rd century pallava inscription from Andhra, orissa and deccan.
The villages transffered to the grantis are known as dhana-jana-sahita, janata-samriddha and sapratavasi-jana-sameta.

5. Proliferation of castes
About the 7th century
The brahmavaivarta purana, a 7th century work counts 100 castes including 61 castes noted by Manu, but the vishnudharmottara purana (8th century) states that thousands of mixed castes are produced by the connection of vaishyas women with men of lower castes.

6. Formation of regional cultural units such as Andhra, assam, Bengal, Gujarat, knk, kerela, MH, Orissa, Rajastan, TN etc.

The gurjaras, who came in large numbers to India founded various kingdoms in rajastan and Gujarat in the 6th century and paved the way for formation of gurjaradesha.

Bengal was divided into 2 main units, Gauda and Vanga and the later the whole region was named after Vanga.

Hiuen-Tsang mentions several nationalities.

The Mudrarakshasa speaks of the different regions.

The kuvalayamala (8th Cen.) notes the existence of 18 major nationalities and describes the anthropological character of 16 people.

Apasthamba began to differentiate into proto-hindi, proto-bengali, proto-rajastani, proto-gujarati, proto-assamme, proto-marati, proto-oriya, proto-maithili.

7. Feudal dimension of the ideology and culture of the period
In TN Brahmanas settled in large number from the 8th century and the agamas were compiled from the 9th century.

Most features such as feudal state organization, reversion to closed economy, proliferation of castes, regional identity in art, script and language, puja, bhakti and tantra which developed in medieval times and continued later, can be traced back to the 6th and 7th centuries.

Political conditions and major dynasties:

Political Conditions

In the post-gupta period, Kannauj, on the bank of Ganga, near Kanpur in UP became the centre of political activities in N.India.

“India during this medieval period was nations within nation” – Ishwari Prasad.

Dynasties of N.India:

Kannauj and the Tripartite Struggle:

A2 Ma-twan-li, one of Harsha’s ministers named Naof-ti-a-la-na-shun usurped the throne.

Arjuna or Arunashwa, the usurper, came into conflict with the Chinese embassy led by Wang-Hiuan-Tse, which was on its way to Magadha.

Wang-hiuan-tse having been defeated first, defeated the Indian king later with the help of Srong-tsan-Gampo, the king of Tibet, and the kings of Nepala, Kamarupa (Shrikumara or Bhaskaravarman). Arjuna was defeated and taken prison to china.

No direct information regarding the history of Kannauj till the rise of Yashovarman.
Chachnama, a work of rather late period, mentions four kings ruling at kannauj. These four kings are Rasil Rai,
Sayar, Sahiras and Rai Harachander.

About AD 730, Yashovarman ruling at Kannauj. His invasion of Gauda formed the subject of the Prakrit poem Gaudavaho by Vakpatiraja, yashovarman’s court-port.

Yahsovarman defeated many kings, which included the king of magadha, vanga, parasika, shrikantha (Thanesar) and harishchandra (ayodhya).

He founded the city named Yashovarmapura.

A large number of his coins found in the Punjab.

Vakpati is said to have composed a poem Madra-mahi-vijaya at kannau in the court of yashovarman’s son Ama.

A Chinese authority states that I-cha-fon-mo (yashovarman), king of central India, sent his minister song-pao-ta to the Chinese court in AD 731.

A2 Kalhana, Lalitaditya grew gelous of Yashovarman’s power and attacked Gadhipura (Kannauj) and finally uprooted Yashovarman.

Yashovarman was a man of learning. He is said to have written a play named Ramabhyudaya.

The rajatharangini mentions that the poets vakpatiraja, bhavabhuti and others adorned the court of Yashovarman.

Bhavabhuti was the author of three well-known Sanskrit plays malatimadhava, mahaviracharita and uttaramacharita,.

Vakpatis earlier work, Mahu-maha-Vijaya, is lost.

After yashovarman’s dynasty (the last three rulers – Ama, Dunduka and Bhoja ruled for not more than 20 years) three rulers belonging to the same lineage – Ayudhas – ruled for a very short period.

Vajrayudha was the first king who was defeated by Jayapida vinayaditya of Kashmir.

Indrayudha was the next king during whose reign Dhruva Rashtrakuta invaded the Doab and defeated the Kannauj king.

Indrayudha was also defeated by Dharmapala of Bengal. Seated his protégé chakrayudha to the throne of kannauj.

Govinda III rastrakuta seems to have defeated Dharmapala and chakrayudha.

Nagabhatta II prathihara finally defeated chakrayudha and usurped the throne of kannauj.

The gurjara-prathiharas of Bhinmal (Raj), the palas of Bengal and the rastrakutas of manyaketa (MH) fought against each other.

This tripartite struggle continued for nearly a century and ultimately ended in favour of the gurjara-prathihara ruler nagabhatta-II, who founded the gurjara-prathihara kingdom at Kannauj.

The Gurjara-Prathiharas:

A branch of the famous gurjara tribe who came in the wake of the huna invasion.

Pratihara (literally, door-keeper) because their ancestor lakshmana served as a door-keeper to his brother rama.

Rajashekara, the dramatist, calls his patron mahendrapala, raghukulathilaka and raghugramani.

There were many branches of the prathiharas: pratiharas of mandasore, prathiharas of nandipuri, prathiharas of idar, prathiharas of rajor inscription (the nomenclature Gurjara-prathiharas is based on this inscription only) etc.

The earliest prathihara dynasty was founded by harichandra.

Most imp pratihara ruling family was that founded by Nagabhatta I in the first half of 8th century AD.

The early history of this family is preserved in the Gwalior inscription of Boja, the 7th king of the Dynasty.

Nagabhatta I died in 760 AD leaving a powerful and extensive kingdom to his brother’s son Kakkuka or
Kakustha. He came to be known as Kakkuka (i.e., one who always laughs).

He was succeded by his youger brother Devaraja.

Vatsaraja (AD 775 – 800) was the son and succersor of Devaraja.

He is known as Ranahastin Vatsaraja in Kuvalayamala, a jain work. He defeated the famous bandi clan represented by Indrayudha at Kannauj.

Vastsaja was succed by his son Nagabhatta II (AD 805 – 33)

Nagabhatta II was succeed by his son Ramabhadra.

Bhoja I, the son and succeor of ramabhadra was the greatest king of this dynasty.

With the help of many feudatrory kings, bhoja I defeated Narayanapala, the successor of Devapala.

His tutelary diety was goddess Bhagavathi and he was known by several other names such as prabhasa, adivaraha and mihira.

It also likely that he married kalavati, the daughter of the Chahamana Chandra raja.

His coins are known as “adi varaha dharama”.

The arab merchant (AD 851) Suleman described him as the greatest enemy of the mohammadiean faith.

Bhoja I was succeded by his son mahendrapala I.

He was also known as mahendrapala, mahendrayudha nirbhaya-narendra or nirbhaya-raja.

His guru rajashekara, occupied a distinguished palce in literature. His works include karpura manjari,
balaramayana, bala bharata, kavya mimansa, bhuvana-kosha and haravilasa.

Mahendrapala I had atleast 2 queens, Devanagadevi and Maha Devi (or Mahidevi) and four sons.

The order of succession is: Bhoja II Mahipala  VinayakapalaKshitipala (or Herambapala)

Kshitipala was successed by his son Hayapathidevapala.

During mahipala’s reign many activities of note took palce.

The arab traveler Al-masudi who visited India in AD 915 – 16 refers to the wide extent of the Pratihara empire and rich resources of its ruler.

We are told that he was rich in horses and camels and mainted four armies in four directions, each neighbouring 700,000 or 900,000 men.

Indra III rastrakuta’s invasion doom for prathiharas.

Indra III conqured Ujjaini, crossed the Yamuna and devastated the city of Mahadoya (Kannauj).

Mahipala was completely rooted later, Mahipala was able to retrieve his fortunes.
The process of decline of prathihara empire began with devapala and accelerated with vijayapala when Gwalior was lost to the Kachchhawaha chief Vajradaman.

Rajyapala succeded vijayapala at a time when gaznavid sultans menaced the North- Westen India.

In AD 1018 Sultan Mohammad Gajini pillaged Mathura and reached Kannauj.

Rajyapala being panic-stricken abondened kannauj and fled to bari on the other side of the ganges.

The chandela king Ganda or Vidhyadara with others killed Rajyapala in AD 1019 and placed his son Sulochanpala on the throne.

Yahsapala was the last ruler of the line.

The Gahadavalas:

Chandradeva, the third member of the dynasty (the other two members being Yashovigraha and Mahichandra), founded the Gahadavala dynasty at Kannauj some time between AD 1080 and 1085 after defeating a chief named Gopala.

Chandradeva’s son and successr, Madanapala.

Madanapala began his reign at Kannauj but was very soon compelled to shift to Varanasi.

Shortly before AD 1114 Madanapala was followed by his son, Govindachandra. As crown prince,
Govindachandra repulsed the Muslim expedition sent by the Ghaznavid Kind, Mas’ud III under Hajib Tughatigin.

He was married to Kumaradevi, the niece of Ramapala.

Govindachandra’s reign was marked by the literary efforts of his minister for peace and war, Laksmidhara, who produced the Kritya-Kalpataru (Kalpadruma).

Govindachandra is generally described as vividhavidya- vichacha-vachaspati.

Another poet of his court Damodarasharman compiled the Uktil-Vyakti-prakarana to teach vernacular of varanasi.

The medical science has a representative in Pranacharya Bhatta Pandit.

Govindachandra was the only Gahadavala king who issued gold coins.

Govindachandra was succeded by his son, vijayachandra.

The Prithviraja-Raso credits him with extensive victories.

Like his father, Vijayachandra also stood as a bulwark against the aggression of the Arabs and the Turks. He drove back forces of Amir Khusrau or his son Khusrau Malik, who had occupied Lahore after their expedition from Ghazni by Alauddin Ghori.

Sriharsha, the author of the Naishadhacharitam, probably wrote a eulogistic work, Shri Vijayaprashasti, in honour of his patron Jayachandra’s father vijayachandra.

Vijayachandra’s successor was his son, Jayachandra.

Sriharsha, the author of Naishadhacharita and the Khandana Khanda Khadya, lived in his court.

The Bodha-Gaya inscription which mentions a Buddhist monk as his dikshaguru (though he was initiated to Krishna worship).

The famous generals Alha and Udal belonged to his army.

Jayachandra’s fame in Indian history is due to his enmity with Prithviraja III of the Chahamana dynasty.

The Raso narrates the story of the marriage of Jayachandra’s daughter Samyogita with Prithviraja and the subsequent defeat of Jayachandra by his son-in-law.

Most important event of Jayachandra’s reigh was the invasion of Sihabuddin Ghori. In AD 1191 the Sihabuddin Ghori was defeated by Prithviraja at Tarain and this debacle rankeled in the sultan’s mind so much that the very
next year he returned and completely routed and killed the Chahamana king.

In AD 1194 Sihabuddin marched towards Kannauj and met Jayachandra on the plain between Chandawar and Etawah. Jayachandra was defeated and slain, but the kingdom was not annexed. His son, Hairschandra, was allowed by Sihabuddin to rule on his behalf.

The Chahamanas of Shakambhari:

The Chahamanas arose as vassals of the imperial Pratiharas and ruled in different parts of Gujarat and rajputana in the 7th and 8th centuries.

Several branches of Chahamana dynasty viz., of Lata, Bhawalapuri, Partapgarh, Ranathambhor, Naddula, Jawalipura, SAtvapura and one, which is the main line, ruled at Sapadalaksha country with its capital at Shakambhari.

Vasudeva was the founder of this line. Then came Samantaraja, Purnatalla, Jayaraja, Vigraharaja,Chandraraja and Gopendraraja.

Durlabharaja the next ruler of this dynasty joined his Pratihara overlord Vatsaraja in the expedition against Gauda.

His son Govindaraja (also called Guvaka), as a vassal of Nagabhatta II, is stated in a literary work to have repelled an attack of Sultan Vega Varisha identified with Bashar, the Arab Governor of sind under Cilpah Al Mamen.

Govindaraja was succeded by his son Chandraraja I, also known as Shasinripa.

His son Guvaka II followed him on the throne.

He in turn was succeeded by his son Chandanaraja who killed Rudrena, a king of Tomara dynasty.

His son and successor was Vakpatiraja. His title was maharaja. He built a temple at Pushkara for shiva which looked like Kailash.

Vakpati had three sons, viz., Simharaja, Vatsaraja and Lakshamana.

Simharaja was the first prince of the family to assume the title of Maharajadhiraja. This means that he made himself independent of the Prathiharas of Kannauj.

His son and successor Vigraharaja II (AD 971 – 98) was the real founder of greatness of the family.

He built at Bhrigukachchha a temple for Goddess Asapuri.

He was succeeded by Durlabharaja II (AD 998 - 1012).

He attacked the Chahamana King Mahendra of Naddula and he was succeded by Govindaraja II also known as Gandu.

After him came Vakaptiraja II, Viryarama, Chamundaraja (AD 1040 – 65), Durlabaraja III (1065 – 70), Vigraharaja III (1070 – 90), Prithviraja I (1090 – 1110) etc.

Prithviraja I is reputed to have killed a body of 700 Chalukyas who had come to pushkara to rub the brahmans.

Prithviraja I and his successor Ajayaraja, also known as Ajayadeva and Salhana.

Ajayaraja is credited with victory over the Garjana mathnagas i.e., the Ghaznavids.

A threat to shakamabari from Muhammad Bahlim made Ajayaraja build the town and the hillfort of Ajmir or
Ajayameru and make it his capital.

Ajayaraja was succeded by his son Arnoraja (AD 1135 – 50).

Arnoraja defeated and slaughtered by Turskishas defeated Naravarman of Malwa.

Arnoraja was killed by his elder son Jagaddeva.

Jagaddeva was soon osted by his younger brother Vigraharaja IV Vishaladeva (AD 1150 – 64).

An inscription found at Bijolia (Mewar) specially credits him with the conquest of Delhi.

Vigraharaja IV Vishaladeva was also an accomplished poet and a patron of letters.

The harikeli-nataka, portions of which were recovered from an inscribed stone slab on the of a mosque named Adhai-din-ka-Jhopra, is supposed to be his composition.

Lalitavigraharaja nataka was written in his honour by Mahakavi Somadeva.

Vigraharaja IV was given the title Kavibandhava.

A Sanskrit college at Ajmir was built on the model of Bhoja’s Saraswathi Kanthabharana Vidhyalaya at Dhara.

He also responsible for the construction of Visalya lake with its grand temples.

A town established by him was known as Vishalpur.

After him come to the throne his son Aparangageya.

Then came Prithviraja II who was followed by his uncle someshvara.

He took the title Prathapalankeshwara.

Someshwara was succeded by Prithviraja III.

Prithviraja III or Rai Pithaura of the muslim writers was the greatest monoarch of this house (AD 1179 - 92).

Jayachandra of Kannauj held a swayamvara to his daughter Samyogita, Prithviraja III appeared just in the midst up the ceremonies and daringly carried her away.

Prithviraja III was next called upon to resist the attacks of Sihabuddin Md Ghori.

In the first engagement at Tarain in AD 1191 fortune favoured him, and the Ghori troops were so completely overhelmed that even Sihabuddin was rescued with furious charges of the Chahamanas.

The very next year, in AD 1192, he returned to Hindustan with a recognized force to avenge it.

In the Second battle of Tarain that ensued, the invaders carred “death and destruction”.

Prithviraja III fled from the field for dear life, but was captured near Sasuti (saraswati) and killed.
A son of Prithviraja and his uncle Hariraja ruled upto the invasion of Allauddin Kalji from Ranathambore.
India still remembers the name of Prithviraja.

His court had great pandits and poets like Vidhyapati, Janardhana, Vishwarupa, Jayanka and Padmanaba.


When Huen-Tsang was traveling in India (AD 621 – 45), sind was ruled by Buddhist Monarch of the sudra caste.

After the death of the last ruler of this dynasty his Brahmin minister, Chach, married the widowed queen and himself assumed the throne.

His son, Dahir, who succeeded Chandar or Chandra (Chach’s brother) had to face a serious Arab invasion because he didn’t chastise the people of Debal for having seized a vessel carrying rich peasants from the king of sri lanka to Hajjaj, Governor of Iran.

Md Bin Kasim led expedition; he stormed Debal in AD 712, captured Brahmanabad, and reduced Multan in AD 723, thus completing the conquest of Sind.

This was the culmination of the Arab plundering raids, which began as early as AD 636 – 37 during the Kilafat of Omar.

Junaid was its Governor under Khilifa Hisham (AD 724 – 43).

He was perhaps repulsed by Nagabhatta I.

Land tax – Khiraj.

Poll tax – Jeziah.

The Arabs learnt Astronomy and maths from the Hindus and translated into Arabic, the work of Charaka and the fables of the Panchatantra.

The Palas:

West Bengal was known as Gauda and east Bengal as Vanga.

Bengal was subjected to internal disorder, what is called Matsya nyaya (the rule of strong devouring the weak), leading upto a revolution by which a local chief Gopala (AD 750-770) was elected (grahita) by the people.

A2 the Tibetan lama, Taranath, Gopala built the celebrated monastry at Odantapura and reigned for 45 years.

Gopala’s son and successor, Dharmapala, was an energetic personality.

He found himself in a position to undertake foreigh expeditions.

His most notable achievement was the defeat of Indrayudha, whom he deposed, raising Chakrayudha to the throne of Kannauj.

Inscriptions record that both Vatsaraja Pratihara and Druva rastrakuta (AD 779 – 794), who could not tolerate the imperial pretentions of Dharmapala, routed him separately.

The Sanjan plates further testify that “Dharmapala and Chakrayudha surrendered themselves” to Govinda III rastrakuta (AD 794 -814).

Dharmapala’s dreams of supremacy in the north came to naught when Nagabhatta II Prathihara seized Kannauj from Chakrayudha.

Dharmapala was a Buddhist and he is said to have founded the famous Buddhist establishment at Vikramashila (Patharghata, Bhagalpur Dist.).

Dharmapala was succeded by his son, Devapala.

The Badal pillar inscription claims that Devapala “eradicated the race of the Utkalas, humbled the pride of
Hunas and scattered the conceit of the rulers of the dravida and Gurjara”.

From the Bhagalpur inscription that Devapala’s cousin, Jayapala, was responsible for the securing the submission of Utkala (Orissa) and Pragjotisha (Assam).

It appears from a copper plate, discovered at Nalanda, that Devapala granted 5 villages, for “various comforts” of the Bikshus as well as for writing the dharmaratnas for the upkeep of a Buddhist monastry built there by Balaputradeva, the king of Sumatra and Java.

Devapala was a patron of Buddhism.

The limits of Devapala’s reign may be fixed between AD 815-855.

The Bhagalpur inscription records that in the 17th year of Narayanapala (AD 858 – 912) reign Mudgagiri
(Monghyr) a village in Tira-bukthi (Tirhut) to the shrine of Shiva and built one thousand temples in the honour of the same diety.

Mahipala I, son of Vigrahapala II, was another powerful prince of the line.

After the death of Mahipala I, the pala power declined under his successors on account of internal dissensions and external invasions.

The first blow was delievered by the senas, who conquered east and west Bengal from the palas.

The most imp event of manipala’s reign was the northern incurtion of Rajendra I Chola sometime between AD 1021 and AD 1023.

Passing through orissa and southern kosala, rajendra I Chola turned northwards and defeated Mahipala I.

The most powerful members of the dynasty were Dharmapala and Devapala.

Vincent Smith has mentioned the names of two artists, Bhiman and his son Vitapala, who “acquired the highest fame for their skill as painters, sculptors and bronze-founders”.

One of the monks, the famous Atisa is known to have gone to Tibet on a buddhist mission about the middle of the 11th century.

The endowment by a king of Suvarnabhumi (Java and Sumatra) was of a special college at Nalanda for the foreign students from those regions.

A Buddhist monk Srijnana in his later years went to Java and learnt Buddhist scriptures there as mentioned in the Tibetan work of Kalyanamitra Phyag-sopra.

The senas:

First king: Vijaya Sena

Its founder was Samantasena who described himself as a Kshatriya of Karnata and “born in a family of Brahma-
Kshtriyas” at a place called Radha in West Bengal. His son Vijayasena succeeded him.

Vijayasena really built up the sena power.

In the Deopara inscription composed by the poet Dhoyi, he is started to have defeated “Navya (King of Nepal and Mithila) and Vira; attacked the king of Gauda; humbled the king of Kamarupa; lent his support to the king of kalinga”.

Vijayasena is said to have founded two capitals; vijayapuri in W.Bengal and Vikramapura in E.Bengal.

Vijayasena was succeeded by Ballalasena (AD 1165 -85).

A2 the literary texts, Laghubharata and Ballalacharitha, Mithila was included in Ballalasena’s kingdom as his fifth province, the other four provinces being Radha, Varendra, Vagdi and Vanga.

Ballalasena is known as a man of letters author of Danasagara, a work of Smriti and Adbhutasagara, a work on Astronomy.

Ballalasena incredited with an imp social mmnt known as Kulinism by which the nobility of birth and purity of blood were carefully protected.

Ballalasena was succeeded by Lakshmana sena who was unable to offer any resistant to the Turkish invader Md
Bin Baktiyar Kalji and escaped for his life by his flight (AD 1194).

The Turkish invader had an easy way to the sena capital at Nadia (renamed Laknauti or Lakshmanavati).

The story, as told by Minhaj, goes that the capital fell before an attack of only 18 turkish horsemen.
Lakshmanasena found his asylum at Vikramapura in E.Bengal where his sons Vishyarupasena and Keshavasena continued to rule.

At his court flourished such literary celebrities as 1. Jayadeva, the author of Gitagovindam; 2. Halayudha, the linguist and 3. Dhoyi, the poet of Pavanadutam.


The most imp were the kesaris of Bhuvaneshwar and the eastern Gangas of Kalinganagara (Kalingapatnam or Mukhalingam in Ganjam Dist).

The Kesaris were devout Saiva and immortalized their sway by constructing temples of bhuvaneshwar with the “profusion of decorative motifs”. The great Lingaraja temple (c.11th).

The eastern Gangas:

The eastern gangas established themselves in Kalinga about the beginning of the 8th cen.

They originally belonged to Kolahala (Kolar) and were thus a branch of the Gangas of Mysore.

Ganga family rose to the zenith of its power under Ananthavaraman Chodaganga.

He was so called because he was the son of Raja Raja Ganga by his Chola wife, Raja Sundari, Daughter of Rajesndra Chola.

Tradition ascribes to him the building of the famous temple of Puri.

Early in the 13th cen. The eastern gangas began to be harassed by the turks who continued their depredations until “Jajnagar” or Orissa finally fell a prey to their arms in the 14th cen.

The Kalachuris of Tripuri:

They rose into prominence under Kokalla of the Gahadavalas.

The greatest ruler of this dynasty was Karna, who defeated his contemporary, identified with Vijayapala or with Devavarman.

During the reign of Yasah-karna’s son and successor, Gaya-karna, the Chandella Madanavarman (c.1128 – 64)


The Chandellas of Jejakabhukti or Bundhelkhand:

Relaeated to the Gonds or Bhars.

Feudatories of the Prathiharas of Kannauj.

The name of their kingdom Jejakabhukti was given after the name of one of the early Chandella kings known as Jeja or Jejjaka.

They became independent under Dhanga (c. 950 – 1002).

Dhanga’s son, Ganda, too joined the coaliation formed by Shahi King Anandapal in AD 1008 to repel the invasion of Md.

Ganda’s son Vidhyadhara, who was the greatest Chandella king, attacked and killed the Prathihara king
Rajyapala in AD. 1019 for having surrendered before Md Ghazni.

Keertivarman, resisted an invasion of his territory by a Ghaznavid army from the Punjab in AD 1019.

Among later Chandella rulers Madanavarman and Paramardi or Paramal were the most notable figures.

In 1203, he faced complete annihilation during an invasion of Kalanjara by Qutb-ud-din-Aibak.
Paramardhi died in action and Qutb-ud-din-Aibak occupied Mahoba.

3 most imp cities in the Chandella dominion were Khajuraho (M.P), Kalanjar (U.P) and Mahotsavanagar (U.P).


The Paramaras of Malwa:

Vassals of the pratiharas or the Rastrakutas.

Initially their capital was Ujjain, but they later transferred it to Dhara.

The first great Paramara Ruler was Vakpati Munja (AD 974 -998).

He built many artificial lakes, one of which the Munjasagara, situated at Dhara, still preserves his name.

His court was graced by Padmagupta, Dhananjaya (author of Dasarupa), Danika, Halayudha and others.

Greatest ruler of the ruler was Bhoja (AD 1010-55).

During the last year of Bhoja, the Chalukya king Bhima I entered into a coalition with the Kalachuri king
Laxmi-Karna and the Paramara Kingdom was attacked from two sides by the allied forces.

Bhoja was the greatest scholar king of India. He is called kaviraja.

His works: Ayurvedasarvasva, a work on medicine and samaranganasutradara, a rare work on architecture.
He expanded Dhara and build the city of Bhojpur to the south of Modern Bhopal.

He also founded a college known as Bhojashala at Dhara.


The Chalukyas of Anhilwara:

The Chalukya or Solankis ruled in Gujarat and Kathiyawar for nearly three and a half centuries ( 950- 1300).

One of the earliest kings of this was Mularaja who consolidated the Chalukya authority in Gujarat.

Bhima I (1022-64), during whose reign Md Ghazni overran Gujarat and plundered the great temple of Somnath.
Bhima I’s reign is important in history of Indian architecture. It was during his reign the famous Dilwara Temple at Abu was built.

He abdicted the throne in favour of his son, Karna (1064).

Karma was succeeded by his son Jayasimha Siddharaja, the greatest king of Gujarat.

Jayasimha (1093 -1143), who assumed the title Siddharaja.

He made extensive conquests.

Jayasimha was a great patron of letters. Under him, Gujarat became a famous seat of learning and literature.

He gathered round him a large number of poets and scholars including the celebrated Jain scholar Hema Chandra who wrote the famous grammar book Siddha-Hemachandra.

He was saiva and erected many temples, the most magnificient was Rudramahakala at siddhapura.
Jayasimha died in AD 1043; as he had no son, he nominated his minister’s son Bahada, as his successor. But after his death, the throne was seized by his distant relation, Kumarapala.

Kumarapala’s remarkable exploit was the defeat of Mallikarjuna of Konkana, who was killed and his kingdom was annexed to Gujarat.

He embraced Jainism before 1164, under the influence of the Jain Scholar Hema Chandra.
Kumrapala’s death in AD 1171-72, precipitated a struggle for succession in which Ajayapala emerged victorious.

It is alleged that he demolished jain temples and executed the jaina scholar Ramachandra.

Ajayapala died in a military encounter AD 1176 and was succeed by his minor son Mularaja II.

During the minority of Mularaja, his mother, Queen Naikidevi, the daughter of the Kadamba Paramardin, King of Goa, acted as regent.

In 1178, when Muizeddin Md Ghori invaded Gujarat, the brave Queen-mother, with boy king on her lap, bravely led the army against the turks and defeated them near Mt.Abu.

Mularaja died in 1178 and was succeeded by his younger brother Bhima II, who ruled for 60 years.

Two brothers, Tejapala and Vastupala served as ministers of Bhima II.

In 1197, Qutb-ud-din Aibak invaded Gujarat and plundered Anahilapataka.

Sultan Iltutmish invaded northern Gujarat, but was repulsed by Vastupala.

Bhima II died in 1239. He is said to have rebuilt the temple of Somanatha, destroyed by Md Ghazni.
The last Vaghela ruler of Gujarat was Karna, during whose rule whole of Gujarat was conquered by Alauddin Khalji.

The chalukya kings were great patrons of A&A.

The earliest buildings are the four temples at Sunak, Kanoda, Delmal and Kesara, all within a radius of 15 miles from Anahilpataka (Patan), of the larger temples equally beautiful, the temple of Surya at Madhera near Baroda is a typical example.

The jain temple of Vimala at Mt.Abu in Rajastan is one of the best specimen of Solanki art.

With Jayasimha Siddharaja is associated the Rudra Mahakala Temple at Siddhapura.


Three dynasties, the Karkota, the Utpala and the Loharas, ruled over Kashmir during the period.
Of the Karkota dynasty, Lalithaditya Muktapida (724 -760) and Jayapid Vinyaditya (779-810) were the two most illustrious rulers.

The first among Utpalas was Anantavarman who reigned during 855-83 with his able minister Sura.
Suryapura (modern Sopore) called after its builder Suryya.

Anantavarman founded a new city Avantipur (Bantipur).

His court was adorned by two poets, Ratnakara and Anandvardana. In his time, A2 Kalhana, rice was sold for 36 dinars per khari, as against to 200 dinars earlier.

Anatavarman’s death was followed by a civil war among rivals whom Samkaravarman, the legal heir, came out victorious.

His young son Gopalavarman succeeded him. His mother Sugandha became the virtual ruler.

A boy king was placed on the throne as puppet by corrupt ministers in league with the military.

He was Nirjitavarman, a cousin of Samkaravarman.

At last this rule of corruption was ended by the king’s brother named Chakravarman by his military and administrative ability.

Yasaskara succeeded by his minor son Sangramadeva with a regency of ministers one of whom, Pravaragupta, killed him and usurperd his throne.

Pravaraguptawas succeed by a more unworthy son Kshemagupta, whose queen Didda with her Lohara relations setup a female govt. Her name appeared on coinage.

After Kshemagupta’s death in AD 958, Kashmir was ruled by Didda by another 50 years.

She ruled as a regent for her young son, Abhimanyu, assisted by an able minister Naravahana.

The queen Didda died in 1003, leaving the throne to her nephew, Samgramaraja, with whom a new dynasty, the Loharas, began.

Ananta’s(1028) extravagance led him into debt from which he was saved by his queen named Suryamati who appointed able ministers.

He then abdicted in favour of his son, Kalasa, while retaining in power his able minister Haladhara.

The frustrated father committed suicide, and his faithful consort followed him to the pyre.

He nominated his second son, Utkarsha as his successor. But his half-brother Vijayamalla revolted against him.

There upon Kalasa released his brother Harsha from captivity to help him against the rebellion but harsha in turn, imprisoned Kalasa, who committed suicide.

Heavy taxation resulted in a rebellion led by Uchchhala, the exiled general.

Harsha’s reign is narrated in Rajatharangini of Kalhana, who was son of Harsha’s friend and wrote from personal knowledge.

Muslim invasions under Dalucha during the reign of Sahudeva (1301-20).

The Tibetan chief Rinchana became king of Kashmir after sahudeva, whose daughter, Kotadevi, he married.

The foreinger ruled well but murdered in AD 1323. hindu rule now virtually ended and was replaced by muslim rule till the kingdom was finally annexed by Akbar (AD 1586).

North-West Frontier:

The Shahis (Shahiyas):

A2 Al-Beruni, Turkish Shahiyas were descendents of Kanishka.

Its last king Logaturman was osted by his Brahmin minister named Khallar, who founded a new dynasty known as hindu Brahmana Shahiyas, with its capital at Udabhandapura (Ohind, 24 km above Attock).

They have close political relations with Kashmir.

Kallar is called Lalliya Shahi in Rajatharangini.

His son Toranmana was osted by an adventurer but he recovered his throne with the help of Kashmir. His son called himself Maharajadhiraja Parameshwara Shahi Sri Bhimadeva.

His daughter’s daughter was the famous queen Didda of Kashmir.
Jayapala mentioned in an inscription on a hill in upper swat valley as Paramabhattaraka Maharajadhiraja Sri
Jayapala deva and he constructed a temple at Vajirasthana (Waziristan).

His dominion was quite extensive including parts of east Afghanistan as per as Laghman to the west, NWFP and the Punjab as far as Sirhind in the East and multan in the south as the gate keeper of India before the rise of Ghazni.

He had to facet the invasion of Subuktagin at Jalalabad and later sent round a message to the hindu rulers of
India against the menace of the invasions of Md Gazini.

His appeal was responded to by the rulers of Kannauj, Mahoba and Ajmir.

When Md Gazini invaded, the old king Jayapala was defeated and taken prisoner by Md Gazini (AD 1000).
The defeated king consigned himself to the flames, he himself kindled to save his honour.

Later Jayapala’s son Anandapala, in the spirit of his father, formed another hindu confederacy to meet the Ghaznavid invasion with king Rajyapala of Kannauj and the Chandela Vidhyaradha in AD 1008.

The confederacy was led by Anandapala’s brother Brahmanapala.


Md. Ghazini, the son and successor of Subuktgin, who ascended the throne of Ghazni in AD 998.
Ghazini led as many as 17 expeditions into India from AD 1000 to 1027.

Md Ghazini launched his invasions with the dawn of the eleventh century, when he crossed the Khyber pass and occupied some hill fortresses against the Hindushahi ruler Jayapala.

Some of his memorable campaigns were: the plunder of Nagarkot and its famous temple (1006), Thaneswar (1012-13), and Mathura and Kannauj (1016-18). The most outstanding invasion (15th) of Md Ghazini was against the temple of Somnath.

In 1175, another wave of Turkish invasions under Shahabuddin Md Ghori engulfed the country completely which led to the foundation of the sulatanate of Delhi.

Alberuni’s India:

Md Ibn Ahmad Alberuni, or as his compatriots called him Abu Raihan, was born in AD 973 in the territory of Khwarizm, now calledKhiva, in Central Asia Alberuni visited India with the Turkish invader Md Ghazni.
He translated from Sanskrit a few Indian works on astronomy, especially the Paulisasiddhanta, brihatsamhita and Laghujatakam of Varahamihira.

He was the first who introduced the treasure of Sanskrit literature to the Islamic world.

After his visits to India, he wrote Ivolka to enlighten his countrymen on Indian astronomy.

Alberuni’s book: Tahkik-i-Hind (Reality of Hindustan).


“the constant transfer of land or land revenues made by princes to priests, temples and officials led to the rise and growth of the scribe or the Kayastha community which undermined the monopoly of Brahmans as writers and scribes”.

The process of proliferation and multiplication of castes was yet another marked feature of the social life of the period.

The Rajaputras:

The Bardic tales of Rajastan, belonging to the medieval period, contain a stereotyped list of 36 rajput clans. It includes such well-known names as the Hunas and the Pariharas (Pratiharas), Chahamanas, Guhilas and Tomaras, Gurjistan, Gujar-i-Khashi, Gurjaratra etc.

Prathiharas are supposed to be of Gurjara origin.

Chalukyas are ethnically connected with the Gurjara tribe.

A2 Bardic tales, the Pratiharas, the Chalukyas, the Paramaras and the Chaahamanas formed the agnikula (fire-class). Hence all the members of the agnikula were offshoots of the Gurjara tribe. This view was put forward by Cunningham and A.M.T.Jackson.

A2 D.C.Ganguly, no evidence to connect the Gurjaras with the Rajputs.
Paramaras alone claimed fire origin.

Paramaras and the Chalukyas were distinct from the Gurjaras.

Harichandra, Guhila and Vasudeva, who were respectively the founders of the prathihara, Guhila and Chahmana dynasties, were brahmanas by caste and flourished about AD 550.

It was not possible for anybody who was not a son of a brahmana through a brahmana wife to claim the rank of a brahmana. Harichandra’s sons through his kshatriya wife degraded to the position of the kshatriyas.

A2 C.V. Vailya, Rajputs were the descendents of Vedic Aryans.

A2 Dasarath Sharma, Rajputs rose to prominence in the process of resisting foreign invasions and they shouldered willingly the kshatriyas’ duty of fighting for the land as well as its people and culture.

Mixed caste ‘constituted a fairly large section of petty chiefs holding estates’.
Chattopadhyaya sees two important pointers to the process of emergence of the rajputs in the early medieval
records. First, the expansion of agrarian economy, and the incresase in the number of settlements as well as colonization of new areas.

Nagda-Ahar Guhilas trace their movement from Gujarat.

The movement of Chahamanas was from Ahichchhatrapura to Shakambhari or Jangaladesh.

The Nadol banch of the Chahamana family was founded in the Godavari region by Lakshamana.
Brahma-kshatra was a transitional status.

Gujarat Gurjaras were feudatories of Valabhi king, the early Guhilas of Kishkindha and those of Dhavagatra were feudatories too, and Bappa Rawal, the traditional founder of the Guhila line of Mewar.

The Chahamanas were the feudatories of the Prathiharas.

The development of a new land unit consisting of six villages and the multiples there of which, in many cases, were parts of such administrative divisions as mandala, bhukti or vishaya.

The earliest reference to the units of 84 villages seems to be available in Saurashtra, held, towards the close of the 9th century, by the Gurjara-Prathiharas.

Big holdings like Chaurasiya emanated from the process of the distribution of land among the members of the ruling caste.

Hemachandra’s Trishashtishalakapurushacharita refers to numerous persons of rajaputra descent, a Mount Abu inscription of the late 11th cen speaks of all the rajaputras of the illustrious Rajaputra clan. Merutunga, in his Prabandhachintamani, mentions hundred rajaputras of the Paramara clan.

Castes and professions:

Atri speaks of Kshatra Brahmin, who lives by fighting, the Vaishya Brahmin, who lives by engaging himself in agriculture, cattle rearing and trade, the Shudra-Brahmin, who sells lac, salt, milk, ghee, honey, meat and some particular dyes, and Nishada-Brahmin, who adopts the profession of thief and robber.

Aparaka qauotes the brahma purana to show that the food which comes from the hands or which is owned by the members of the following professions is forbidden: a singer, an actor, a physician, a surgeon, a goldsmith, a blacksmith, a vendor of weapons, a tailor, a washerman, a distiller or seller of liquors, an oil-presser, a bard, a carpenter, one who makes his living by astrology, one whose duty is to ring bells, a village officer, worker in hides, a potter, a wrestler, a worker in bamboo, an indigenous banker, and one who serves as a priest to the whole village.

Alberuni mentions the four traditional castes.

Outside these were the antyajas and some people called Hadi, Doma, Chandala and Badhatau, who could be distinguished from one another by their occupation.

Kalhana and later on Kullukabhata mention as many as 64 castes.

The brihaddharma Purana mentions 41 mixed castes, having the same status of Shudras.

Devala classifies the Brahmins, according to the standard of knowledge of the Vedas, namely mantra (one who has not studied any of the Vedas nor performs the functions of a Brahmin but is simply born in a Brahmin family), Brahman (one who has studied a portion of the veda), srotriya (one who has studied only one recension of the veda along with its 6 angas and performed 6 duties of Brahmins), anuchana (knowning the meaning of the Vedas and vedangas, pure of heart and tending sacred fires), bhruma (having qualities of anuchana Brahmin and performing yajnas), rishi (a celibate, leading an austere life, truthful and able to curse or reward) and muni (one who is given to staying in a forest, subsists on roots, fruits and vegetables).

This passage of Devala regarding the 8 grades of Brahmins has been quoted by Lakshmidhara, Vallalaseana and Chandesvara.

The Pehoa inscription of the 9th century records that Vamuka, the son of Bhatta Viruka, was one of the horse dealers who assembled in the town of Prithudaka.
The exemption of the brahmanas from capital punishment is not only mentioned by Laksmidhara, but also by Alberuni and several other writers, like the authors of the Barhaspatya Arthashastra and Laghvarhannitishastra.

Alberuni informs us that if a Brahman killed a man, the former had only to fast, pray and give alms. And if a Brahman stole a valuable object, the king had the right to make him blind and cut off his left hand and right foot or right hand and left foot.

“nothing can wipe off any of the mortal crimes against a Brahman, of which the greatest is the murder of a Brahman, called vajra-brahmahatya” - Alberuni.

The Matsya Purana states that the Brahmins residing in Triisanku, Barbara, Odra (Orissa), Andhra, Takka, Dravida and Konkana were not to be invited to a funeral repast.

A2 the Brihadharma Purana, such degraded brahmans were the astrologer class, worshipping planets, and those who were born of Saksdipi-devala Brahmans.

The brahmavaivarta purana refers to another class known as Bhatta Brahmans, who were born of a suta father and a vaishya mother.


The approximation of the vaishyas to the shudras began as early as Manu and Boudhayana-dharma sutra.

Dr. Altekar and Ghurye rightly hold that the Vaishyas were brought down to the position of the Shudras.

A2 Alberuni, a Vaishya girded himself with a single yajnapavita made of two cords, but a shudra used the thread made of linen.

Even in the days of Laksmidhara, the shudra had freedom to sell all kinds of goods, but the vaishyas were forbidden to carry on transactions in some specified articles like salt, wine, meat, curds, swords, arrows, water, idols etc.


The vaijayanti enumerates as many as 64 jatis.

Both vijnanesvara and the author of the Brahmavaivarta purana states that the mixed castes are innumerable.

A detailed comparison between the different grades of shudras, as described in the Brahmavaivarta and Brihaddhanna Puranas, has been made by Dr. R.C.Majumdar, Dr.Hazra and Dr.Niharranjan Roy. They have shown that both the purnas hold largely the same view regarding the antyajas whose position was below the asatshudras. They were vyadha, Bhada, Kola, Koncha, Haddi, Doma, Jala, Bagatita (Bagdi), Vyalagrahi and Chandala. The list agrees with Bhavadeva’s who classifies the Chandalas with Kaibartta, Pukkasa, Kapalika, Nata, Nartaka, Taksana, Charmakara, Suvarnakara, Saundika and Rajaka.
Washermen, leather-workers, venas, burulas, fishermen (kaivartta), Medas and Bhillas have also been considered as antyajas in the vaijayanti.

Alberuni found two classes who were not reckoned in any caste or guild. In the first group belonged shoe-maker, sailor, fishermen, hunter of wild animals and of birds and the weaver. The second group consisted of the people called Hadi, Doma (Domba), Chandala and Badhatau.

Grades of untouchables:

In the days of the composition of the early smritis, untouchables were called antyajas.

Sub-divisions of these antyajas differ, one from another, Atri mentions seven.

The vedvyasasmriti counts twelve names and also includes all those who eat cow’s flesh as antyajas.
Alberuni tells us of eight groups of people, who were members of crafts and professions, but did not belong to the four-fold caste system, namely washerman, shoemaker, juggler, basket and shield-maker, sailor, fisherman, hunter of wild animals and birds, and weaver. These correspond to rajaka, charmakara, nata or sailushika, buruda, navika, kaivarta, bhilla and kuvindaka, who have been regarded as chandellas and antyajas in all early smriti texts and as shudras and by manu.

Some of the antyajas like weavers are included as uttamasankaras and boatmen and leather-workers as adhamasankara grades of shudras in the Brihaddharma purana.

Mixed castes:

Proper order – anuloma (boy from higher caste and girl from lower caste)

Inverse order – pratiloma (girl from higher caste and boy from lower caste)

It is reproduced almost verbatim with slight additions in Smrityarthasara.

The longest list is given Vaijayanti which makes out a total of 64 jatis consisting of sons born to the four varnas, the twelve anuloma and pratiloma sons and their forty eight offshoots.

A2 Brihaddharma Purana, the list is said to comprise 36 jatis, but actually it comes up to 41. it consists of three grades, distinguished as high (20 jatis), intermediate (12 jatis) and low (9 jatis).

The brihaddharma purana declares all the 36 castes to have the status of shudra.


The lowest castes were antyas or antyajatis, of whom the Chandalas are the most important representatives.

The antyajatis according to the enumeration of Vaijayanti, are 7 in number, namely wahermen, leather-workers, venas, burulas, fishermen (Kaivartas), Medas, and Bhillas.

The list consists of Buddhists, Jains, materialists (lokayatika), atheists (nastika), followers of Kapila, shaivas and shaktas outside the vedic pale (A2 Smrityarthasara), or Shaktas of the left-hand sect (A2 Apararka).

“Butchers, fishermen, public performers, executioners and scavengers have their habitations marked by3a distinguishing sign. They forced to live outside the city and sneak along on the left when going about in the hamlets” – Huen-tsang.

A2 Alberuni, the hindus of north-western India regarded foreigners (meaning the Muslim especially) as impure.


Smritichandrika and Smrityarthasara include marriages of males of twice born classes with females of other castes (asavarna) in the list of practices forbidden in the kali age.

The same qualified support of asavarna marriages (including marriages with Shudras) among the three upper classes is given by Vijnanesvara and Apararka.

Polygamy was widely prevalent in the ruling class, vaijayanti gives a two-fold classification of the king’s wives and concubines.

The king’s married wives comprise, first, the chief queen (mahishi or mahadevi) who has been consecrated; secondly, the queen (devi) born of a royal family; thirdly, the honoured lady (parivrikti); fourthly, the dearly beloved lady (vavata); fifthly the lady who is not the daughter of a king (svamini); and sixthly, a lady who has been won in war (phalakali). The king’s female favourates who, though not married to him, are versed in different fine arts (kala) are called ganika and are divided into different classes. To the above the author adds that the king should select as his secondary wives (avarodha-vadhu), “for purose of enjoyment”, yound and beautiful women of Vaishya and Shudra castes, and he should further engage wantom women (vilasini) having the same physical charms and gratify them with various gifts and personal attention.

Marco Polo speaks of “the 500 wives” of the king of Ma’bar and “the 300 wives” of the king of Cail, both these territories being included in the Pandyan kingdom.

The laws relating to the suppression and abandonment of the wife are repeated in the Smriti Chandrika after the fashion of the old Smritis with a strong tendency to emphasise some points in her favour.

The women’s right to inherit the property of her male relations in emphatically maintained by Smriti-chandrika.
In Kashmir, Suryamati, the queen of Ananta, rose to be the de facto ruler of the kingdom.

Queen Ballamahadevi of the Alupa dynasty (in Dakshina Kannada dist) ruled for at least fourteen years (saka 1201-14) with the masculine titles of Maharajadhiraja, Parabalasadhaka.

The Kakatiya queen Rudramba, beaing the male name of the Rudradevamaharaja, ruled kakatiya kingdom for nearly forty years, and her conspicuous success won the admiration of the contemporary venetain traveler Marco Polo.


Harakeli-nataka is attributed to Vigraharaja Visaladeva Chahamana.

Vallalasena compiled the Danasagara and the Adbhutasagara, and the unfinished part of the later is supposed to have been completed by Lakshamanasena.

Bhoja paramara is said to have been the author of about two dozen works on a variety of subjects, such as medicine, astronomy, religion, grammar, architecuture, poetics, lexicographer, arts etc.

The texts known to us are:









Amogavarsha I Rastrakuta wrote the Kaviraja-marga, a Kanarese work on poetics, and the Prashnottaramalika, which is however, sometimes ascribed to Shankaracharya or to one Vimala.

The Manasollasa was probably the work of the Western Chalukya, Someshwara III, and Mathematics was assiduously cultivated by the eastern Chalukya, Vinayaditya III Gunaga.


Naishadhiyacharitam of sriharsha is the most outstanding epic of this period, written under the patronage of Gahadawala king Jayachandra of Kannauj.

The Shrikanthacharita of the Kashmirian Mankhaka describes the exploits of Shiva.

The Trishastishalakapurushacharita of Hemachandra is an eulogy of the 63 best men of the Jain faith.

The Ramacharita of Sandhyakara Nandi presents both the story of Rama and the life of king Ramapala of Bengal.

The Raghavaphandavija of Dhananjaya Shrutakirti describes the stories of the Ramayana and the Mahabharata at the same time. The marriage of shiva and Parvati; and Krishna and Rukhmini are described in the Parvati-Rukminiya of Vidyamadhava, the court poet of the Chalukyan king Somadeva, or Someshwara III.

Hemachandra is also credited with having composed a work entitled Saptasandhana (having seven alternative interpretations).

Shatarthakavya of Somaprabhacharya, in which every verse was meant for being interpreted in a hundred ways.

A large number of Jaina narratives dealing with the lives of Jain teachers and heroes were composed.

Adinatha-charita of Vardhamana,

Shantinatha-charitha of Devachandra,

Prithvichandra-charitha of Shantisuri,

Parshvanatha-charita of Devabhadra,

Kumarapala-charita of Hemachandra,

Neminatha-charita of Hemachandra,
Munisuvratasvami-charita of Shrichandra,

Supasanaha-chariya of Lakshamanagani,

Sanatkumara-charita or another Shrichandra Mallinatha-charita and Chandraprabha-charita of Haribhadra, and
Kumarapala-pratibodha and Sumantinatha-charita of Somaprabha.

Of these the Adinathacharita, the Kumarapalacharita, the supasanahachariya and the Kumarapala pratibodha contain Apabhramsha portions also.

The Sukumala-chariu of Shrihara and the Neminatha-chariu of Haribhadra are wholly in Apbhramsha.

Many historical texts in the Kavya form were written during this period.

Rajatarangini of Kalhana. The text is unique as the only known attempt at true history in the whole surviving sanskrti literature.

The rajendra-karnapura of Shambhu is an eulogy of king Harsha of Kashmir.

The unfinished Prithviraja-vijaya of Jayanaka, Dvayashraya Mahkavya of Hemachandra, Ramacharita of Sandhyakara Nandi, Kirtikaumudi of Someshwara and the Vikramankadeva-charita of Bilhana, Navasahasanka-charita of Padmagupta and Kirti Kaumudi of Somadeva.

Few short poems of this period:

Gita-Govindam of Jayadeva is known as ‘the most musical song’ ever written in Sanskrit.

The Sandeshrasaka (in Apabhramsha) of Abdul Rahman and Pavanadutam of Dhoyi are minor poems of the nature of Maghadutam of Kalidasa.

The Aryasaptashati of Govardhanacharyais an erotic poem following the tradition of Gathasaptashati of Hala.

A large number treatises were written on poetics. The most important among such works are:
Kavyamimamsa of Rajashekara

Dhvanyaloka of Anandavardhana

Kavyaprakasha of Mammata

Dasharupa of Dhanajaya,

Dasharupavaloka of Dhanika

Saraswathi-kanthabharana of bhoja

Kavyanushasana of Hemachandra,

Prataparudriya of Vaidhyanatha,

Alamkara-sarvasva of Ruyyaka,

Bhavaprakashana of Sharadatanaya Vagabhattalamakara

Kavyanushasana by two vagabhatas belonging to 12th and 13th centuries
the Auchitya Vichara and Kavikanthabharana of Kshemendra,

Vakroktijivita of Abinavagupta,

Vrittiratnakara of Kedara,

Chhandonushasana, Siddha-hemachandra and Haimavyakarana of Hemachandra,

Amarakoshatika-sarwaswa of Sarvanandana Vandyaghatiya,

Ukti-vyakti-prakarana of Damodara Pandita

Prose literature:

The kathakoshaprakarana of Jineshavara suri,

The brihatkathamanjari of Kshemendra

The kathasaritsagara of Somadeva,

Undaya-sundarikatha of Soddhala belong to 11 cen. AD.

One version of Vetalapanchavimshatika of Shivadasa was probably written in 12Cen.

A Jain version of the Panchakhyayika was composed in AD 1199.

The Akhyanakamanikosha, a jain text in prakrit has also been assingned to the 12th cen.

Kumarapala-pratibodha by Somaprabha sinduraprakara or Sukthimuktavali, Gathakosha (in Prakrit) by Munichandra,

Bhavabhavana (in Prakrita) by Maladhari Hemachandra,

Upadesharasayana-rasa, Kalasvarupa-kulakam, and Charchari by Jinadatta Suri,

Yogasara or Dohasara (in Apabhramsha) of Yogichandramuni.

Chakkammovaesa (in Apabhramsha) by Amarakirti,


The Lalithavigraharaja-nataka by Somadeva,

The Harikeli-nataka by Visaladeva,

The prasanna-ragava by Jayadeva,

The Nalavilasa by Ramachandra,
The Mammira-mada-mardana of Jayasimha suri,

The Prabodhachandrodaya of Krishnamishra,

The Maharaja-parajaya of Yashahpala,

The Karnasundari of Bilhana.

The Parijathamanjari of Madanbalasaraswathi,

The Prabuddharauhineya of Ramabhadra Muni,

The Kaumudimi-trananda of Ramachandra,

The Mudritakumudachandra of Yashasha Chandra and

The Latakamelaka of Shankadhara

Vatsaraja, who calls himself the minister of the Chandella king Paramardin wrote 6 plays. They are:







The partha-parakrama of Prahladhanadeva is another minor play.

The Dutangada of Subhata is a Chhiya-nataka.


The Subhashitharatnakosha of Vidhyakara,

The Gatakosha of Muni Chandra suri,

The Subashitavali of Vallabadeva,

The Sadukti-karnamrita of Shridara Dasa.

The Sukthimukthavali of Jalahana,

The Manasollasa of someshvara.

The Lexica:

Abhidhana chintamani, Deshi-namamala, Anekardhasamgraha and Nighantushesha of Hemachandra,

Namamala of Dhananjaya,

Vishvaprakasha of Maheshwara,

Anekarthakoshas of Mankhaka,

Nanardharnavi of Sankshepa of Keshavaswamin,

Buvanakosha of Kshemendra and

The Vijayanti of Yadava Prakash, the celebrated teacher of Ramanuja belong to the early medieval period.

Astronomy and Mathematics:

In the eleventh century Bhoja had written the Rajamriganka on Astronomy.

The famous mathematicaian Baskaracharya flourished in the south in the 12th cen.

His work Siddanta-shiromani comprised four parts: Lilavati, Vijaganitha, grahaganitha, and Gola.
Gola deals with Astronmy.

A very significant idea in the Siddantasiromani is that of perpectual motion, which was transmitted by Islam about AD 1200 to Europe where in course of time it led to the development of the concept of power techonolgy.

Omens, Prognostications and Astrology: a number of treatisises were written on Omens and Prognostications.

The most noted of them is the Adbutasagara by Kings Ballalasena and Lakshmanasena of Bengal.

Durlabaraja compiled his Samudratilaka under Kumarapala of Gujarat.

A son of Durlabharaja wrote Swapanachintamani on dreamlore.

Another such work entitled Narapati-jaya-charya-swarodaya was composed in Gujarat under Ajayapala.

Dharmashastric works:

the Krityakalpataru of Lakshmidara was compiled during this period.

Chaturvargga-chintamani of Hemadri is another such work.

The Mitakshara, commentary of Vijnaneshwara on the Yajnavalkasmriti was composed in North India.
Jeemuthavahana of Bengal, the author of the Dayabhaga (law of inheritance),

Vyavaharamatrika and Kalaviveka flourished in the early medieval period.

Halayuda, the darmadhyaksha of Lakshmanasena composed the Brahmana-sarvaswa.

Kullukubhatta who wrote a commnetry on Manu belonged to this period.
The Manuvritti of Govindaraja and the Smrityarthasara of Shridhara.

The commentary on Yajnavalkasmriti by Apararka.

Smritichandrika by Devannabhatta.

Above all belonged to early medieval period.


The Rasavarna is a work on tantra which deals with metallic preparations and alchemy.

The Dakarnava is a Buddhist tantric works composed in Apabhramsha.

The Sadanamala, a Buddhist tantric work belonged to the 12th cen.


Several commentaries were written on well-known grammatical works.

The earliest commentry on the Vakpadiya was that of Vrishabhadeva.

The Vivarnapanjika or Nyasa by Sthavira Jinendrabuddi is an extensive commentary on Kashika.

Ratnashrimanjana the author of Shabdhardhachinta wrote a commentary Panjika on the Chandra.

A gloss of Durgasimha on the non paninian Katantra also belongs to this period.


In the 8th cen. Charaka, Sushrutha and Astanga Hridaya were rended into Tibetan and Arabic.

Dridhabala of Panchananda in Kashmir revised the text of Charakasamhita.

Madava or Madavakara wrote several books on medicine.

Dridhabala’s father Indukara or Indu was the author of a medical lexicon.

The best known work of Madhava is the Nidana or Rigvimshchana on pathology, translated into Arabic under Harun-Al-Rashid.

Madhava’s fathers works are: Chikitshakutamudgara and Yogavyakhaya.

Tisata wrote Chikitsakalika or Yoga-Mala-Chandratha, son of Tissata who himself was the son of Vagbatta II wrote Yogaratnasamuchchhaya.

Brinda of Bengal wrote his Siddha-Yoga between AD 975 and 1000.


Panchatantra, Nitishataka of Britrihari
Nitishastra by Mathara,

Nithisara of Kamandhaka,

Nithivakyamrita of Somadeva Suri

The field of Kamashastra saw some development.

Rathirahasya by Kokkaka,

Haramekala by Mahuka or Magaka,

Rathivilasa Jayamangala (a commentary on Vatsayana Kamasutra)

In the field of Music we have Matanga, Dhatupata as codified by Bhimasena,
Kuttanimatam of Damodaragupta.

Manasara, the leading text on architecture, has been assigned to AD 500-700.

Bhatta Utpala wrote a work on Vastu Vidhya.

On Cosmetics we hear of a work called Lokshvara cited as a Gandhashastra by Padmashri in his work on

The Vishnudarmottara gives much attention to paining and iconography

And an indendent work on painting was the Chitrasutra mentioned by Damodaragupta.

The Aparajita-prichchha is a work on architecture which appears to have been written in Gujaratha in AD 1200.

The sangita-ratnakara of Sharangadeva was written in the 13th cen. In the south.

The Laghvarhannitishastra of Hemachandra is a work on political science.

Another work on the duties and obligations of princeses was the Rajaneethi-kamadhenu of Gopala.


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