Hathigumpha inscription

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Author of this article is Laxman Burdak लक्ष्मण बुरड़क
Hathigumpha inscription of King Kharavela

Hathigumpha inscription consists of seventeen lines incised in deep cut Brahmi letters of the 1st Century BC on the overhanging brow of a natural cavern called Hathigumpha in the southern side of the Udayagiri hill near Bhubaneswar in Orissa. It faces straight towards the rock Edicts of Asoka at Dhauli situated at a distance of about six miles. Alexander Cunningham published this inscription in 1877 in the Corpus Inscriptionum Indicarrum Vol. I. Sadananda Agrawal has prepared the text in Sanskrit, which has been published in his book Śri Khāravela, 2000, which is presented here:


Translation in English

Sanskrit Text

L.1 - •नमो अरहंतानं [।।] णमो सवसिधानं [।।] ऐरेण महाराजेन महामेघवाहनेन चेतराज वस वधनेन पसथ सुभलखलेन चतुरंतलुठन गुणउपेनेत कलिंगाधिपतिना सिरि खारवेलेन

L.2 - पंदरस वसानि सिरि कड़ार सरीरवता कीड़िता कुमार कीड़िका [।।] ततो लेख रूप गणना ववहार विधि विसारदेन सवविजावदातेन नव वसानि योवराजं पसासितं [।।] संपुणं चतुविसति वसो तदानी वधमान सेसयो वेनाभि विजयो ततिये

Line 3 - कलिंग राजवसे पुरिस युगे महाराजभिसेचनं पापुनाति [।।] अभिसित मतो च पधमेवसे वात विहत गोपुर पाकार निवेसनं पटिसंखारयति कलिंगनगरि खिवीर सितल तड़ाग पाड़ियो च वंधापयति संवुयान पटि संटपनं च

L.4 - कारयति पनतिसाहि सतसहसेहि पकतियो च रंजयति [।।] दुतिये च वसे अचितयिता सातकनिं पछिमदिसं हय गज नर रध बहुलं दंडं पठापयति [।।] कन्हवेंणां गताय च सेनाय वितासिति असिक नगरं [।।] ततिये पुन वसे

L.5 - गंधव वेद बुधो दप नत गीत वादित संदसनाहि उसव समाज कारापनाहि च कीड़ापयति नगरिं [।।] तथा चवुथे वसे विजाधराधिवासं अहत पुवं कलिंग पुवराज निवेसितं ..... वितध मकुट स .... निखित छत

L.6 - भिंगारे हित रतन सापतेये सव रठिक भोजके पादे वंदा पयति [।।]पंचमे च दानी वसे नंदराज तिवस सत ओघाटितं तनसुलिय वाटा पनाडि नगरि पवेस [य] ति ... [।।] अभिसितो च [छठे] वसे राजसेयं संदंसयं तो सवकरण

Line.7 - अनुगह अनेकानि सतसहसानि विसजति पोरं जानपदं [।।] सतमं च वसे पसासतो वजिरघरवति ... स मतुक पद [पुनां] स [कुमार] ...[।।] अठमे च वसे महति सेनाय महत गोरधगिरिं

L.8 - घाता पयिता राजगहं उपपिड़ापयति [।।] एतिनं च कंम पदान संनादेन सबत सेन वाहने विपमुचितुं मधुरं अपायातो यवनराध ... म... यछति पलव भार

L.9 - कपरूखे हय गज रध सह यति सवधरावास परिवेसने ... सव गहणं च कारयितुं बम्हणानं जय परिहार ददाति [।।] अरंहत [पसादाय] नवमे च वसे

L.10 - [नगरिय कलिंग] राजनिवासं महाविजय पासादं कारयति अठतिसाय सतसहसेहि [।।] दसमे च वसे दंड संधि साम [मयो] भरधवस पठानं मही जयनं ... कारापयति [।।] एकादसमे च वसे [सतुनं] पायातानं च मणि रतनानि उपलभते [।।]

L.11 - कलिंग पुवराज निवेसितं पिथुडं गधवनंगलेन कासयति [।।] जनपद भावनं च तेरसवस सत कतं भिदति तमिर देह संघातं [।।] बारसमे च वसे ..... वितासयति उतरापध राजनो [ततो]

L.12 - मागधानं च विपुल भयं जनेतो हथसं गंगाय पाययति [।।] मागधं च राजान बहसतिमितं पादे वंदापयति [।।] नंदराज नीतं कालिंगजिन संनिवेसं [कलिंग] [राज] गह रतन परिहारे हि अंग मगध वसुं च नयति [।।]

L.13 - ...तुं जठर लखिल गोपुरानि सिहरानि निवेसयति सत विसिकनं परिहारे हि [।।] अभुत मछरियं च हथीनाव तं परिहर [उपलभते] हय हथी रतन मानिकं [।।] पंडराजा एदानि अनेकानि मुत मनिरतनानि आहारापयति इध सतस [हसानि]

Line 14 - [दखिणापथ] वासिनो वसीकरोति [।।] तेरसमे च वसे सुपवत कुमारी पवते अरहते (हि) पखिन संसितहि कायनिसीदियाय (...) राजभितिनं चिनवतानं वासासितानं पूजानुरत उवासग (खा) रवेल सिरिना जीवदेह सायिका परिखाता [।।]

L.15 - सकत समण सुविहितानं च सवदिसानं यतिनं तपस इसिनं संघायनं अरहत निसीदिया समीपे पभारे वराकर समुथापिताहि अनेक योजनाहि ताहि पनतिसाहि सतसहसेहि सिलाहि [[ Simhapatha|सिहपथ]] रानि स [भिलासेहि]

L.16 - पटलिक चतरे च वेड्डरिय गभे थंभे पटिथापयति पानतरिय सतसहसेहि [।।] मुरियकाल वोछिनं च चोयठि अंग संतिकं तुरियं उपादयति [।।] खेमराजा स वधराजा स भिखुराजा स धमराजा पसं तो सुनं तो अनुभवंतो कलणानि

L.17 -... गुण विसेस कुसलो सव पासंड पूजको सवदेवायतन संकार कारको अपतिहत चक वाहन बलो चकधरो गुतचको पवत चको राजसि वसुकुल विनिसितो महाविजयो राजा खारवेल सिरि [।।]••

Hathigumpha inscription of Kharavela[1]

Line 1-2 - Salutation to Arhats, salutation to all Siddhas. Ārya Mahāmeghavāhana Mahārājā Śrī Khāravela, the overlord of Kalinga, who heightens the glory of the dynasty of Cetaraja , who possesses many auspicious sign, and is gifted with qualities spreading over four quarters, and who has handsome brown complexion, played the childhood games for fifteen years.

Line 2-3 - Thereafter, being proficient in writing (लेख) coinage (रूप), arithmetic (गणना) law (Vyavahāra ) and procedure (विधि) and skilled in all arts, he ruled as the crown prince for nine years. After completion his twenty-fourth year and with the ripening of the age of minority, (he) as glorious as Vainya was crowned king in the third generation of the royal dynasty of Kalinga1*.

Line 3-4 - In the very first year of his coronation ( His Majesty) caused to be repaired the gate, rampart and structures of the fort of Kalinga Nagari, which had been damaged by storm, and caused to be built flight of steps for the cool tanks and laid all gardens at the cost of thirty five hundred thousand (coins) and thus pleased all his subjects.

Line 4-5 - In the second year, without caring for Sātakarnī [His Majesty] sent to the west a large army consisting of horse, elephant, infantry and chariot, and struck terror to Asikanagara with that troop that marched upto the river Kanhavemnā*2.

Thereafter, in the third year, well versed in the Gāndharva Veda, (His Majesty) made Kalinga Nagri play, as it were by arranging festivals and convivial gatherings, and organising performances of acrobatics, dance, as well as vocal and instrumental music.

Line 5-6 - Then in the fourth year, (His Majesty] .... the Vidyadhara tract, that had been established by the former kings of Kalinga and had never been crossed before3.

The Rathika and Bhojaka chiefs with their crown cast off, their umbrella and royal insignia thrown aside, and their Jewellery and wealth confiscated, were, made to pay obeisance at the feet [ of His Majesty].

Line 6-7 - And in the fifth year, [His Majesty] caused the aqueducts that had been excavated by king Nanda three hundred years before , to flow into Kalinga Nagri through Tanasuli.

Further, in the sixth year of his coronation (his Majesty) in order to display the regal wealth, remitted all taxes, cesses and benevolences for the urban and rural population, to the extent of many hundred thousands (of coins).

Line 7-8 - And in the seventh year of his reign [the Queen] of Vajiraghara, blessed with a son attained motherhood.

Then in the eighth year, having destroyed the strong (fort) of Gorathagiri, with a mighty army [ His Majesty] oppressed Rājagrha.

Line 8-9 - Getting the tidings of all these achievements, the Yavanaraja4 who retreated to Mathura for the rescue of his army encamped there [Surrendered]

The sage Kharavela, with the Kalpa tree burdened with foliage and with the horses, elephants and chariots......... distributed (gifts) to all houses and inns and with a view to making gifts universal gave away the spoils of victory to the Brahmanas.

Line 9-10 - And in the ninth year [His Majesty] caused to be built [in Kalinga Nagari] the Great Victory palace the royal residence at the cost of thirty eight hundred thousand (coins). Then in the tenth year, [His Majesty] the embodiment of politics, diplomacy and peace, caused [ the army] to march through Bharatavarsa5 for conquest.

Line 10-11 - And in the eleventh year [His majesty] secured jewels and precious stones from the retreating [enemies] [His Majesty] caused to be cultivated pithunda, founded by former kings of Kalinga, with ploughs drawn by asses. Also [His Majesty] shattered the territorial confederacy of the Tamil states having populous villages, that was existing since thirteen hundred years.

Line 11-12 - And in the twelfth year, [ His Majesty] terrorised the king of Uttarapatha by an army of hundred thousand, after that [His Majesty] generated great fear among the people of Magadha while making the elephants and horses drink in the Ganges, [ His Majesty] made Bahasatimita, the King of Magadha, obeisance at his feet. [ His Majesty] then brought back the image of Kalinga Jina with its thrown and endowment that had been taken away by king Nanda and the jewels plundered by him (King Nanda) from the Kalinga royal palace, along with the treasures of Anga and Magadha.

Line 13 - [His Majesty] caused to erect towers with strong and beautiful gateways at the cost of two thousand coins. [His Majesty] obtained horses, elephants and jewels losing strange and wonderful elephants and ships. The King of Pandya caused to be brought here ( capital Kalinga Nagri) various pearls, jewels and precious stones hundred thousand in number.

Line 14 - [His Majesty] brought to submission the people of ... And in the thirteenth year upasaka Sri Kharavela a devoted worshipper of those, who used to cloth themselves in fine cloth, enjoy royal endowment and take to rainy season, retreat, excavated in the Kumari hill, where the wheel of victory had been well turned6, dwelling cells for resting of the bodies of the .... Arhats who had renounced their sustenance.


Line 15-16 - [As desired by] the Queen of Simhapatha, [His Majesty] built an edifice in front of and close to the dwellings of the Arhats with thirty five hundred thousand stone slabs, raised from the best quarries and brought form a distance of many yojanas for the convenience of the honoured Sramanas and for the yatis, Tapasa, Rsis and Samghiyanas, who hailed from all directions and also set up on the pink coloured floor, pillars bedecked with emerald at a cost of one hundred and five thousand (coins)

[His Majesty] revived the Tauryatrika7 included in sixty four branches of art that had been suspended during the time of the Mauryas.

Line 16-17 - [ Thus reigns] the king of bliss, the King of prosperity the Bhiksu King and King of Dhamma, [ His Majesty] the mighty conqueror Rajarsi Sri Kharavela, the descendant of Vasu 8, the embodiment of specific qualities, the worshipper of all religious order, the repairer of all shrines of gods, he possessor of invincible armies, the upholder of law , the protector of law, and the executor of law, having seen heard and felt all that is good.


Notes

  1. Lekhah, Rupa, Ganana, vavahara & vidhi have been elaborate in the subsequent chapter of this book.
  2. “ Dr. Sahu and other scholars identity with river Krisna, which does not seem to hold good.
  3. Of course the meaning of this sentence is not fully clear and requires elaboration.
  4. The name of this king is not Visible (Pl. see text)
  5. North India.
  6. Refers to Mahavira’s preaching on the crest of the Udyagiri hill.
  7. Performance of dance, song and concert.
  8. Scholars identifies Vasu with well known Chedi King, which in not convincing.

Masikanagara or Asikanagara

It is revealed from Line-4 of the Hathigumpha inscription that Kharavela in the second year of his reign despatched a strong force comprising cavalry, elephantry, infantry and chariotry to the western quarter without caring for or bothering about Sātakarnī, and Asikanagara was frightened on its reaching the river Kanhavemṇā. Some scholars prefer to read Masikanagara instead of Asikanagara and locate it in the coastal region of Andhra Pradesh. According to Sadananda Agrawal it is not well-supported. Kanhavemṇā is commonly equated with the river Krishna coastal flowing in Andhra Pradesh. However, Krishna lies much to the south of Kalinga, and not west as averred in the epigraph (पछिमदिसं). But there is another stream flowing to the west of Kalinga in Vidarbha and known locally at present as Kanhan which flows about 17 km northwest of Nagpur and joins the river Vena (Wainganga), and it is the combined flow of these two streams that is spoken as Kanhavemṇā in our records.

The recent find of a sealing belonging to the Asikajanapada in course of intensive archaeological excavations at Adam (Nagpur district) has solved also the problem of locating Asikanagara whose king or and people became frightful at the arrival of Kharavela's army at Kanhavemṇā. In view of the evidence of a highly prosperous city unearthed at Adam, Prof AM Shastri is of the opinion that Adam itself represents the Asikanagara of Hathigumpha inscription. It is worth noting in the present context that a terracota sealing having a legend, has been discovered from Adam, situated on the right bank of the river Wainganga, which reads Asakajanapadasa (असकजनपदस).

Other minor inscriptions

Besides Hathigumpha inscription of Kharavela there are some other minor Brahmi inscriptions in the twin hillocks of Udayagiri and Khandagiri, which were deciphered earlier by Prof R D Banergy during 1915-16 (Epigraphic Indica-XIII) and BM Baraua (Indian Historical Quarterly-XIV). Sadananda Agrawal has given further clarifications about them. Those seem to be related with Jats are as under:

I-Mancapuri cave inscription (Upper storey)

This inscription is engraved on the raised space between the second and third doorways of the cave.

L.1- अरहंत पसादाय कलिंगानं समनानं लेनं कारितं राजिनो ललाकस

L.2- हथिसिहस पपोतस धुतुना कलिंग चकवतिनो सिरिखारवेलस

L.3- अगमहिसिना कारितं

Translation - By the blessings of Arhats the chief queen of Kharavela, the Cakravarti monarch of Kalinga, the great grand-daughter of Hathisiha (Hasti Simha) and the daughter of Lalāka or Lalārka caused to be excavated the cave for the sramanas of Kalinga.

II-Mancapuri cave inscription (Upper storey)-A

This inscription is incised on a raised bend between the 3rd and 4th doorways from the left and contains single line.

ऐरस महाराजस कलिंगाधिपतिना महामेघवाहनस कुदेपसिरिनो लेणं Translation - This is the cave of Aira Mahameghavahana Maharaja Kudepasiri, the overlord of Kalinga.

Kudepasiri seems to be the immediate successor of Kharavela.

III-Manchapuri cave inscription 'B' (Lower storey)

This inscription has been engraved on the right wall of Veranda, to the right of the entrance to the right-hand side chamber of the main wing, consisting of one line. The text is presented below:

कुमारो वडुखस लेणं

Translation - [This is] the cave of Prince Vaḍukha.

Note:- On palaeographic ground Prof Banergy considers this inscription to be a little earlier than the inscription of king Kudepasiri. According to Sadananda Agrawal, Prince Badukha stands an obscure figure in history, but Badukha seems to be the son or brother of Kudepasiri.

IV-Inscriptions in the sarpagumpha (Over the door way)

This inscription consisting of one line, is incised over the doorway of the sarpagumpha.

चूलकमस कोठाजेया च

Translation - The chamber and veranda/or side chamber of cūlakama. However Dr. Sahu interpreted Ajeya being united by a Sandhi qualifying Koṭha there by denoting invincible. but he ignored the conjunction ca which follows Koṭha and Jeya.

V-Inscription in the sarpagumpha ( to the left of the doorway)

L.1- कंमस हलखि

L.2- णय च पसादो

Translation :- [The pavilion is the] gift of Kamma and Halakhina. Most probably Halakhiṇa was the wife of Kamma. Chūlakamma- found in the inscription No. IV and Kamma of this record indicate official designations rather than the proper names. Kamma may be taken as minister of works (Karma saciva) and Cūlakamma appears to be a junior cadre of minister in the Department of works.

VI-Haridas cave inscription

This inscription contains one line has been incised over one of the three entrances to the main chamber of the cave from the veranda.

चूलकमस पसातो कोठाजेया च

Translation :- The chamber and veranda (or side chamber) are the gift of cūlakama.

VII- Vyāghragumphā inscription

The record is incised on the outer wall of the inner chamber.

L.1- नगर अखंदस

L.2- स भूतिनो लेणं

Translation :- The cave of Bhūti, the city judge.

VIII-Jambesavara cave inscription

This inscription has been engraved over the entrances to the inner chamber of the cave.

महादस बरयाय नकियस लेनं

Translation :- The cave of Mahamāda Nākiya and Bāriyā.

IX.— Inscription in the Chota Hathigumplia.

This inscription does not seem to have been noticed before in priut. It seems to have been noticed for the first time by Mr. A. E. Caddy, when he was taking casts of these inscriptions for the Calcutta Museum, as there ia a good cast of it in that institutíon, The record consists of a single line, very mnch mutilated, on the outer face of the tympanum of the arch over the dowrway.


X-Tatowāgumphā inscription (Cave No -1)

The record of this inscription is incised over one of the entrances to the inner chamber. The Text reads in Sanscrit as

पादमुलिकस कुसुमस लेणं x [।।]

Translation: The cave of Kusuma, the padamulika.

Notes:- There is a syllable after the word lenam, which may be read as ni or phi,. padamulika literaly means, one who serves at the feet [of king].

Here Kusuma seems to be related with Kaswan clan of Jats.

XI-Ananta Gumpha inscription (A)

The record is incised on the architrave between the left ante and the fifth pillar.

दोहद समणनं लेणं

Translation :- The cave of the Dohada Śramaṇas.


According to Kishori Lal Faujdar, An article about Raja Kharavela in Orissa mentions about the rule of Kaswan in 2nd century of Vikram samvat. It has been mentioned in ‘Hathi Gumpha and three other inscriptions’ (page 24) in Devanagari as under:

कुसवानाम् क्षत्रियानां च सहाय्यतावतां प्राप्त मसिक नगरम्

Kusawānāṃ kshatriyānāṃ ca Sahāyyatāvatāṃ prāpt masika nagaraṃ.

This translates that the city of 'Masik' was obtained with the help of 'Kuswa' Kshatriyas. 'Masika' has been identified with Asikanagara

Jat clans mentioned in Hathigumpha Inscriptions

Reference

  1. Sadananda Agrawal: Śrī Khāravela, Published by Sri Digambar Jain Samaj, Cuttack, 2000.
  2. Jat History Dalip Singh Ahlawat/Chapter III,p.306
  3. Jat History Dalip Singh Ahlawat/Chapter III,p.306
  • Sadananda Agrawal: Śrī Khāravela, Published by Sri Digambar Jain Samaj, Cuttack, 2000.
  • Kishori Lal Faujdar: Jat Samaj Monthly Magazine, Agra, January/February (2001) page-6.

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