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Author:Laxman Burdak, IFS (R)

Calingae or Calingi were a race of people in India mentioned in ancient accounts of Megasthenes and Pliny. Parathalisa has been mentioned as capital of Calingae by Pliny (23–79 AD). Megasthenes has also mentioned Parathalisa as the royal city of the Calingae. Broadly Calingae is identified with the southern Orissa.


Jat clans


Parathalisa (परथालिस) has been mentioned as capital of Kalinga (Orissa) by Pliny (23–79 AD). It has also been mentioned by Megasthenes as the royal city of the Calingae (Kalinga). Its identity is not yet known.

The Calingae were widely diffused over a large area according to Pliny,[1] and consisted of the Calingae proper, the Gangarides-Calingae and the Macco-Calingae. This may have been a reference to the Tri-kalinga ("Three Kalingas") that appeared in the Puranas.[2] The area of diffusion is thought to roughly coincide with the Northern Circars (now spanning the states of Andhra Pradesh and Odisha). Their chief cities were Dandagula (Dandaguda) and Parthalis (Protalis).[3]

According to political scientist Sudama Misra, the Kalinga janapada originally comprised the area covered by the Puri and Ganjam districts.[4]

According to Pliny the Elder they had a lifespan of only eight years. This has been viewed as exaggeration, akin to Pliny's report that the Mandi people of India bear children at age seven.[5]

Visit by Xuanzang in 639 AD

Alexander Cunningham[6] writes that....In the seventh century, the capital of the kingdom of Kie-ling-kia, or Kalinga, was situated at from 1400 to 1500 li, or from 233 to 250 miles, to the south-west of Ganjam.[7] Both bearing and distance point either to Rajamahendri on the Godavari river, or to Koringa on the sea coast, the first being 251 miles to the south-west of Ganjam, and the other 246 miles in the same direction. But as the former is known to have been the capital of the country for a long period, I presume that it must be the place that was visited by the Chinese pilgrim. The original capital of Kalinga is said to have been Srikakola, or Chikakol, 20 miles to the south-west of Kalinga-patam. The kingdom was 5000 li, or 833 miles, in circuit. Its boundaries are not stated ; but as it was united to the west by Andhra, and to the south by Dhanakakata, its frontier line cannot have extended beyond the Godavari river, on the south-west, and the Gaoliya branch of the Indravati river on the north-west. Within these limits, the circuit of Kalinga would be about 800 miles. The principal feature in this large tract of country is the Mahendra range of mountains, which has preserved its name unchanged from the time of the composition of the Mahabharata to the present day. This range is mentioned also in the Vishnu Purana, as the source of the Rishikulya river, and as this is the well-known name of the river of Ganjam, the Mahendra mountains can at once be identified with the Mahendra Male range, which divides Ganjam from the valley of the Mahanadi.

Alexander Cunningham[8] writes: The Calingae are mentioned by Pliny,[9] as occupying the eastern coast of India below the Mandei and Malli, and the famous Mount Maleus. This mountain may perhaps be identified with the high range at the head of the Rishikulya river, in Ganjam, which is still called Mahendra Male, or the " Mahendra mountain."

Jat clans mentioned by Megasthenes

Megasthenes also described India's caste system and a number of clans out of these some have been identified with Jat clans by the Jat historians. Megasthenes has mentioned a large number of Jat clans. It seems that the Greeks added 'i' to names which had an 'i' ending. Identified probable Jat clans have been provided with active link within brackets.

Jat clans as described by Megasthenes
Location Jat clans Information
3. Ganges The Mandei (Munda/Manda), and the Malli (Malli), the Gangarides (Ghangas+Rad), the Calingae (Kalinga), the Prasii (Magadha), the Modogalingae The tribes called Calingae (Kalinga) are nearest the sea, and higher up are the Mandei (Munda/Manda), and the Malli in whose, country is Mount Mallus, the boundary of all that district being the Ganges.

The royal city of the Calingae (Kalinga) is called Parthalis. Over their king 60,000 foot-soldiers, 1,000 horsemen, 700 elephants keep watch and ward in "procinct of war. There is a very large island in the Ganges which is inhabited by a single tribe Modogalingae

Mention by Pliny

Pliny[10] mentions 'The Nations of India'....The nations whom it may be not altogether inopportune to mention, after passing the Emodian Mountains, a cross range of which is called "Imaus," a word which, in the language of the natives, signifies "snowy,"27 are the Isari, the Cosyri, the Izi, and, upon the chain of mountains, the Chisiotosagi, with numerous peoples, which have the surname of Brachmanæ,28 among whom are the Maccocalingæ. There are also the rivers Prinas and Cainas,29 which last flows into the Ganges, both of them navigable streams. The nation of the Calingæ30 comes nearest to the sea, and above them are the Mandei and the Malli.31 In the territory of the last-named people is a mountain called Mallus: the boundary of this region is the river Ganges.

27 The Sanscrit for "snowy" is "himrarat." The name of Emodus, combined with Imaiis, seems here to be a description of the knot of mountains formed by the intersections of the Himalaya, the Hindoo Koosh, and the Bolor range; the latter having been for many ages the boundary between the empires of China and Turkistan. It is pretty clear, that, like Ptolemy, Pliny imagined that the Imaiis ran from south to north; but it seems hardly necessary, in this instance at least, to give to the word "promontorium" the meaning attached to our word "promontory," and to suppose that he implies that the range of the Imaüs runs down to the verge of the eastern ocean.

28 A name evidently given to numerous tribes of India, from the circumstance that Alexander and his followers found it borne by the Brahmins or priestly caste of the Hindoos.

29 Still called the Cane, a navigable river of India within the Ganges, falling into the Ganges, according to Arrian as well as Pliny, though in reality it falls into the Jumna.

30 The Calingæ, who are further mentioned in the next Chapter, probably dwelt in the vicinity of the promontory of Calingon, upon which was the town of Dandaguda, mentioned in c. 23 of the present Book. This promontory and city are usually identified with those of Calinapatnam, about half-way between the rivers Mahanuddy and Godavery; and the territory of the Calingæ seems to correspond pretty nearly to the district of Circars, lying along the coast of Orissa.

31 By the Malli, Parisot is of opinion that the people of Moultan are meant.

Mention by Pliny

Pliny[11] mentions Arabia'....Ampelome57 also, a Milesian colony, the town of Athrida, the Calingii, whose city is called Mariva58, and signifies "the lord of all men;" the towns of Palon and Murannimal, near a river by which it is thought that the Euphrates discharges itself, the nations of the Agrei and the Ammonii, the town of Athenæ, the Caunaravi, a name which signifies "most rich in herds," the Coranitæ, the Œsani, and the Choani59. Here were also formerly the Greek towns of Arethusa, Larisa, and Chalcis, which have been destroyed in various wars.

57 Probably the same place as we find spoken of by Herodotus as Ampe, and at which Darius settled a colony of Miletians after the capture of Miletus, B. C. 494.

58 Hardouin remarks that Mariaba, the name found in former editions, has no such meaning in the modern Arabic.

59 Mentioned by Ovid in the Metamorphoses, B. v. 1. 165, et seq. Sillig, however, reads "Ciani."

Mention by Pliny

Najran is mentioned as Negrana by Pliny.[12]. .....Ælius Gallus60 , a member of the Equestrian order, is the sole person who has hitherto carried the Roman arms into these lands, for Caius Cæsar, the son61 of Augustus, only had a distant view of Arabia. In his expedition, Gallus destroyed the following towns, the names of which are not given by the authors who had written before his time, Negrana, Nestum, Nesca, Masugum, Caminacum, Labecia, and Mariva62 above- mentioned, six miles in circumference, as also Caripeta, the furthest point of his expedition.

60 An intimate friend of the geographer Strabo. He was prefect of Egypt during part of the reign of Augustus, and in the years B. C. 24 and 25. Many particulars have been given by Strabo of his expedition against Arabia, in which he completely failed. The heat of the sun, the badness of the water, and the want of the necessaries of life, destroyed the greater part of his army.

61 By adoption, as previously stated.

62 The town of the Calingii, mentioned above.


विजयेन्द्र कुमार माथुर[13] ने लेख किया है ... त्रिकलिंग (AS, p.414): त्रिकलिंग का उल्लेख कलचुरि नरेश कर्णदेव के अभिलेखों में हुआ है। अभिलेख में 'त्रिकलिंग' नाम से तेलंगाना (आंध्र और मैसूर का तेलुगू प्रदेश) देश का अभिधान किया गया है। कुछ ऐतिहासिकों के अनुसार आंध्र, अमरावती और कलिंग का संयुक्त नाम ही 'त्रिकलिंग' था। त्रिकलिंग को कर्णदेव ने जीत कर अपने राज्य में मिला लिया था। अन्य विद्वानों के अनुसार यह उड़ीसा के उत्कल, कोंगद और कलिंग का संयुक्त नाम था। कुछ लेखकों का मत यह भी है कि त्रिकलिंग उत्तरी कलिंग का नाम था। (दे. महताब हिस्ट्री ऑफ़ उड़ीसा, पृष्ठ 3)

External links

See also


  1. Pliny, Bostock & Riley (tr.) (1855), p. 44 note 50.
  2. Caldwell, Robert (1913), A Comparative Grammar of the Dravidian Or South-Indian Family of Languages, Asian Educational Services, p. 29
  3. Pliny, Hist. Nat. VI, 21–22 (Pliny, Bostock & Riley (tr.) 1855, pp. 42–43 and note 43, 44 and note 50)
  4. Sudāmā Miśra (1973). Janapada state in ancient India. Bhāratīya Vidyā Prakāśana.
  5. Pliny, Hist. Nat. VI, 2 (Pliny, Bostock & Riley (tr.) 1855, p. 134 and note 98)
  6. The Ancient Geography of India/Southern India: By Sir Alexander Cunningham, p.516
  7. Julieii's ' Hiouen Thsang,' iii. 92. See Maps Nos. I. and XIII.
  8. The Ancient Geography of India/Southern India: By Sir Alexander Cunningham, p.517
  9. Hist. Nat. vi. 21. "Gentea: Calingae proximo mari, supra Mandei, Malli, quorum mons Mallus, finisque ejus tractus est Ganges."
  10. Natural History by Pliny Book VI/Chapter 21
  11. Natural History by Pliny Book VI/Chapter 32
  12. Natural History by Pliny Book VI/Chapter 32
  13. Aitihasik Sthanavali by Vijayendra Kumar Mathur, p.414