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Author:Laxman Burdak, IFS (Retd.)

Jayapida (जयपीड़) (r. 745-776 AD) was was a king of Kashmir, grandson of Lalitaditya (r. 724 CE–760 CE) of the Karkoṭa dynasty.



Rajatarangini[1] tells us that the Kashmira King Jayāpira was succeeded by his son Lalitapira by queen Durgi. He reigned for twelve years He took back from Brahmanas the places named Suvarnapārshva, Falapura and Lochanotsa. [IV,p.101]

Awathkul:- This village is 6 kms to the south of Kupwara. This village has been settled by a Sardar, named Awathpul in 821 AD. He was cousin of Raja Jai Peeth & a person of high influence. Awathpul became Raja in 852 AD..[2]

Jayapura (जयपुर) was a fort after Jayapira in eastern country mentioned in Rajatarangini. [3] [4]

Kasmir visit of Xuanzang in 631 AD

Alexander Cunningham[5] mentions ....Parihasapura was built by the great Raja Lalitaditya,[6] who reigned from A.D. 723 to 760. It was situated on the right, or eastern bank of the Behat, near the present village of Sumbal. There are still many traces of walls and broken stones on the neighbouring mounds, which show that a city must once have existed on this spot ; but the only considerable remains are a bridge which spans the Behat, and a canal which leads direct towards Supur, to avoid the tedious passage by the river through the Wular Lake. As Parihasapura is not mentioned again in the native chronicle, it must have been neglected very soon after its founder's death. His own grandson, Jayapida, built a new capital named Jayapura, in the midst of a lake, with a citadel, which he named Sri-dwaravati, but which the people always called the " Inner Fort."[7] The position of this place is not known, but I believe that it stood on the left bank of the Behat, immediately opposite to Parihasapura, where a village named Antar-kot, or the " Inner Fort,"

[p.102]: exists to this day. The final destruction of this city is attributed by the people to Sangkara Varmma, who reigned from A.D. 883 to 901. He is said to have removed the stones to his own new city of Sangharapura, which still exists as Pathan, 7 miles to the south-west of the Sumbal bridge.

In Rajatarangini

Jayapida is mentioned in Rajatarangini . [8] [9] [10]

Rajatarangini[11] mentions that ....Uchchala re-built Nandikshetra...Uchchala re-built Nandikshetra which had been burnt by a destructive fire, and made it more beautiful than it was before. The king who was bent on repairing the dilapidated buildings repaired Shrichakradhara, Yogesha and Svayambhu. He set up a new at Parihasapura, the god Shriparihasakeshava which king Harsha had taken away. He was devoid of cupidity and adorned Tribhuvanasvami with the Shukavali, described before, which had also been taken out by king Harsha. He also renewed the most beautiful throne in his kingdom, the same that was brought by Jayapira but had been burnt by fire during the revolution which led to Harsha's dethronement.

Rajatarangini[12] mentions....The wealth of king Jayapida obtained by oppressing the subjects was squandered by Utpala and others, — the sons of a servant-woman and the destroyers of his grandson.

Rajatarangini[13] mentions....Jayapida and others, by their kingly grace, made wisdom shine amidst the deep darkness of injustice, like fleeting lightning in the clouds. But this king, by the gift of things of permanent value, prevented, like the rays of jewels, his other virtues from being known.

Rajatarangini[14] mentions....As Shatrughna was brought up by Bharata, even so Jayapida lives under the fostering care of Lalitaditya.

Jayāpira's reign

Rajatarangini[15] mentions ....Jayāpira: After the death of Sanggrāmāpira, Jayāpira the youngest son of Vappiya or Lalitaditya, ascended the throne. This prince remembered the words of the ministers, " Be like your grandfather," which they used to repeat to him according to the direction of king Lalitaditya I, and being ambitious of conquest, he collected an army and set out of his country. Arriving at the gate of Kashmira with his feudatory chiefs, he asked the old

[p.84]: men there as to the numerical strength of the army with which his grandfather had set out. The old men smiled and said, "What is the use of asking that question ? For that which was then accomplished cannot be repeated again. He had one lak and twenty-five thousand litters of war with him, while you have only eighty thousand." But the king did not think the conquest of the world difficult with the army he had collected, as he thought times had much changed since the days of his grandfather. The old men found in him the spirit of his grandsire. When the king had gone far out of his country, his wife's brother rebelled and ascended the throne of Kashmira. On the other hand, many soldiers who had not much loyalty in them, and longed for home, daily deserted his army and returned to their country. Thus deserted, yet resolved to show his personal valor, the king made a solemn vow. Through his pride which was not yet humbled, he surmounted the frowns of fortune.

Jayāpira went to Prayaga: Sending his feudatory kings who followed him, to their respective countries, he with a few followers went to Prayaga. There having ascertained the number of his horses, he presented one lak minus one to Brahmanas with rich offerings. And there on the banks of the Ganges he erected a monument marked with his name, and an inscription to the effect that he who should be able to present one lak of horses might pull down Jayapira's monument, and erect his own. The Ganges still laves with its waters the

[p.85]: monument marked with the name of Jayapira.

In the city of Paundravardhana: He then ordered his soldiers to return home, and separating him-self from them, went out alone one night, and entered the city of Paundravardhana, the possession of Jayanta, the king of Gaura.

Long peace had made the citizens rich which it gave him, delight to see. The king know dancing, and naturally enough wished to see a dance, and entered the temple of Karttikeya. For a time he sat on a stone at the door of the temple. He had an air of majesty in him which, the people perceived and wondered, and they moved abide from him. It so happened that the dancing girl Kamala, saw with wonder the beautiful king, and his uncommon mein. She also marked that he frequently touched his shoulders and concluded that he must be some great man travelling over the world in disguise. " May be," she thought, " he is a king or a king's son or born of some high family who is accustomed to take betel from behind him, since he is frequently touching his back. The elephant shakes his ears though there be no black bees, the lion looks behind as he goes though there be no elephant near, the peacock dances though the clouds be dispersed; thus habit makes one work though there be no cause for so working." Thus thinking she made a sign to a bosom friend of hers, bidding her to approach the king; and when he placed his hand on his back as before, Kamala's friend placed a betel there, which the king took, and

[p.86]: putting it to his mouth looked back and saw her. He asked her by a movements of his eyebrows who she was. She replied his question. He was pleased with her sweet conversation ; and when the dance was over, she accompanied him to Kamala's house. The king was struck with Kamala's courteous behaviour, her tenderness and beauty. Now when the moon had risen, she took her guest by the hand, and led him to her bed room. There lying on a golden couch, the girl, drunk with Maireya wine, practised her arts on the king, but he did not touch her. And when she became ashamed of her forwardness, the king clasped her to his bosom, and gently said : " It is not, ! beauteous-eyed, that you have not touched my heart, but owing to my present misfortunes I am obliged to offend thee by not responding to your caresses. I am your servant, your simplicity has bought me, and you will soon know my history, and then, excuse me. Know that I have vowed not to enjoy pleasures till I have done my task." So saying he played a tune with his fingers on the couch, and sighed and recited a verse : " Whose lust of conquest is not satisfied, can he think of woman ? The sun does not come to his spouse in the evening without conquering the whole world." When he had finished the recitation, the girl took him to be some great man. On the morning when, the king was about to depart, Kamala requested him not to go, and gave him a lodging in her house.

Once the king went out to a riverside to perform his evening prayer, and it was late when he returned, and

[p.87]: found tho whole household extremely anxious on his account. When he asked the cause of their anxiety, Kamala smiled and said : — " At night there comes a great lion which kills many lives ; day by day it destroys man, elephant, horse, and you being late we were apprehensive of your safety. Be he king or prince, no one stirs from his house at night." The king smiled at her tale. That night passed, the king went out of the city next evening, and waited beneath a large Banyan tree for the lion. From a distance he spied the animal looking like the very smile of Yama moving about. He shouted in order to draw the attention of the boast, and at that deafening noise, the lion yelled and approached, his mane shaking, his eyes burning, and his ears erected. He lifted up the forepart of his body and opened his mouth. The active king thrust his hand up to the elbow into the mouth of the lion, and cut inside his chest. The lion vomited blood and died of that single stroke. The king washing his blood, and hiding the wound in his elbow, slept as before in the house or Kamala. In the morning king Jayanta heard that the lion had been killed, and urged by curiosity, went out to see it. There, he beheld the huge carcase of the animal killed by one single person, and felt sure that he who had destroyed it was more than man. He was, however, surprised when a follower of his gave him a keyura [an ornament worn, on the upper arm] taken out from the mouth of the lion, marked with the name of Shrijayapira.

[p.88]: How came he here? Asked the king, and the city became alarmed at the information. After assuaging the fears of the citizens, king Jayanta thus addressed them — "Why are you afraid, O men of little sense, now that you should be glad? It is rumoured that for certain reasons the powerful king Jayapira is travelling in the world alone under the false name of prince Kallata. I have no son," continued the king of Gaura " and am resolved to marry my daughter Kalyanadevi to him. " He ought to be sought after, and if he be found without seeking, it will be as one who seeks for jewels and finds the island where there are all precious stones. He must be in this city, and he who will be able to give any information about him will obtain in return whatever he desires." The citizens, trusting in the word of their truthful king, made search after Jayapira, and at last informed Jayanta that the king of Kashmira was stopping in the house of Kamala. The king with his ministers and his ladies came to the place, and with due attention conveyed him to his palace. And then he married him to Kalyanadevi. Jayapira then subdued the five kings of Gaura, and made his father-in-law paramount over them. The army which he had left behind under the command of Devasharmma, the son of Mittrasharmma, the minister of his grandfather, joined him : and at the request of his general he returned to his country with his wife and Kamala. On his way he defeated the king of Kanyakubja, and took away from him his splendid throne.

[p.89]: His brother-in-law Jajja usurped his throne:

When he entered Kashmira, his brother-in-law Jajja, "who had usurped his throne, came out against him. An obstinate battle was fought for several days at the village of Pushkaletra. During these days the dwellers of the villages and forests who could not brook the usurper, flocked to Jayapira, who was beloved of his subjects. In the course of the battle, one Shrideva, a villager, and a Ghandila by caste, sought for Jajja. They pointed out to him Jajja riding on horseback in the thick of, the battle, but being thirsty he was drinking water from a golden vessel. " Now Jajja is killed by me," cried out Shrideva as he struck him with a stone tied to a tiling. When he had set out for battle, he had said to his mother that he was going to help the king, and had asked for food. His mother laughed, but he resolved to kill Jajja. Jajja's army seeing him struck down to tho ground with stone, and motionless, left; him dying. Thus he reigned foe three years in the kingdom which lie gained by rebellion. He lived in anxiety, dreading the arrival of his powerful foe. The riches of merchants last not, if they appropriate what is entrusted to them, nor of prostitutes, if they deceive their paramours nor of kings, if they get the kingdom by rebellion. After the death of Jajja, Jayapira reigned, and by his good works he attracted the hearts of the good. His queen Kalyanadevi bounded a town named Kalyanapura on the field of her husband's victory. The king founded A city named Mahlānapura, and set up a large image of Keshava,

[p.90]: and Kamala also raised a city named Kamala after her name.

Improvements in the kingdom: The king made several improvements in the kingdom. He introduced such sciences as were long forgotten in the country, even as Kashyapa brought the Vitasta, and encouraged his subjects to cultivate learning. He invited learned men from other countries and employed them in collecting the fragments of Patanjali's commentary , on the annotations of Katyayana on Panini's grammatical aphorisms. The king himself used to take lessons from Kshira, a Professor of Grammar. He never liked nor tolerated self-praise, but valued the praise of the learned. The title of pandita was more prized in his reign than that of the king. He listened to whatever learned men said, and so the inferior kings who had any favor to ask crowded in the houses of the learned. Such was his assiduity to get together learned men, that men of lore became scare in the courts of other kings. In Shukradanta's house of charity, where boiled rice was distributed, one learned man named Thakriya was made the head. Another learned man named Udbhatabhatta was made the president of his court on a daily pay of one lak of diniras. He made Damodaragupta a poet, who had the art of procuring women, his principal minister. The poets of his court were Manoratha, Shangkhadatta, Chataka and Saudhimāna; and his ministers were Vamana and others. Once the king dreamt, when in deep sleep, that the

[p.91]: sun was rising from the west, and he knew thereby that some virtuous panditas had entered his kingdom. This noble and eloquent king appreciated learning in which he took so great a pleasure. What joys can those kings feel, who, like blind balls, are bent only on satisfying their appetites. As the embrace of the wife who is determined to fellow her lord to the other world, is to the dead when placed on the funeral pyre ; as the juice of the sugarcane is to one who has lost his taste by Mahamoka , disease; as the went of the garland is to the dead; even so is tho grandeur of learning to the senseless.

Rakshasas from Ceylon: The king once ordered one of his messengers to get five Rakshasas from Ceylon. The messenger who was none other than his minister for war and peace, fell over-board the vessel, and was swallowed by a Timi fish ; but he tore the bowels of the fish and reached the shore. Vibhishana, king of Ceylon, gave him five Rakshasas and sent him back to his country. The king bestowed much wealth on the messenger, and caused the Rakshasas to fill up a deep tank, and build a fort named Jayapura which equaled heaven in beauty. The king set up three large images of Buddha, a monastery, and an image of a goddess named Jayadevi in that town. He also set up images of Rama and his brothers, and of Vishnu reposing on a snake. Some say that the king caused, the tank to be filled up by his workmen, and employed the Rakshasas in doing some other work.

Acha of Mathura:

Once the king dreamt that Vishnu asked him to cause a city

[p.92]: like Dvaravati to be built surrounded by water, and he built a town so surrounded, which the people, even so , this day, call Abhyantarajayapura. In this city, Jayadeva, who was at the head of the five departments [mentioned before] built a monastery ; and A'cha, the son-in-law of Pramoda the king of Mathura, who was subject to the king of Kashmira, set up an image of Mahadeva named A'cheshvara.

The king again set out for conquest. He had a large army with him; his elephants appeared as a continuation of hills as far as the sea, and his army stretched from the Himalaya to the Eastern Hills. At night Summuniraja, and others with the Chandalas kept watch over the army. The king adopted the name of Vinayaditya and founded a city in the east named Vinayadityapura.

King entered the fort of Bhimasena, king of the East:

Kings may be great and brave and persevering, yet sudden dangers often render their fortunes doubtful. Once disguised as a hermit, the king entered the fort of Bhimasena, king of the East. He was, however, recognized by Siddha, brother of Jajja, and understanding that the king had come as a spy, he gave information to Bhimasena who, all of a sudden, captured, and confined him. Here fate overcame the efforts of man. Jayapira, however, did not lose his presence of mind in this great danger, and began to plan his escape. It so happened that, at this juncture, a disease caused by spiders, broke out among the people of Bhimasena. The disease was contagious, and fatal in its effect, and persons

[p.93]: attacked with it wore deserted by their fellows. Jayapira heard of this, and caused his men secretly to bring something that increased bile ; he ate it and had an attack of fever and applying the juice of Vajra [a species of Euphorbia] he produced eruptions on his body. Now the guards reported to Bhimasena that the king of Kashi infra had an attack of what they thought to be the prevailing disease, and Bhimasena apprehending danger therefrom, sent out Jayapira. Thus effecting his escape, he captured the fort.

Nepala King Aramuri in war with Jayapira: Aramuri, the learned and wily king of Nepala, wished to engage himself in war with Jayapira. When the king of Kashmira entered Nepala, Aramuri collected his army, and without submitting retired before tho army of Kashmira, Jayapira not caring to fight with other kings, pursued Aramuri through various countries like a falcon that follows a pigeon, sometimes gaining and sometimes losing sight of his enemy's army. Having conquered the countries around, he encamped with his soldiers by the side of a river that flows into the sea within a short distance. Thence he continued his march towards the Eastern Sea for two or three days, his banners flying in the breeze which came from the sea. After which he got within sight of the Nepala army encamped on the southern bank of the river, under the Nepala umbrella. The anger of Jayipira was roused at the eight of the army of the enemy, and on hearing their notes of war. And finding that the water in tho river was only knee-

[p.94]: deep, and not knowing the nature of the place, he descended into the river. When he had gone half way, the flood tide came in, and immensely increased the bulk of the water, the place being near the sea. His army consisting of men, nagas, horses, elephants, were borne away by the current. The king's ornaments and clothes were swept away, and he was carried by the stream to a great distance, but he kept himself above water by swimming. The cries and shrieks of the army, mixed with the roar of the waters, filled all sides. At this opportunity the king was quickly picked up by the enemies by means of leather bag, and thus to their great joy he was captured. The favors of Fortune and of clouds own no law, for Fortune often bestows great favors, but in the next moment causes mishap ; and clouds, while assuaging the heat of a long summer day, hurl down thunderbolts. The king of Nepala confined him in a high stone-built house on the banks of the Kālagandikā, and appointed his faithful guards to watch over him. The king of Kashmira once more in danger, and not knowing what to do, burnt with grief. The confinement was so strict that neither the moon nor the sun could see him. But by some means he saw that the river was nigh, and he planned his escape. Even to this day the kind-hearted punditas remember the lines which the king then composed regarding his condition.

Devasharmmā, the proud minister of Kashmira, was grieved to think of the humiliation of the king, and de-

[p.95]: termining to rescue his master at the risk of his life, sent a sweet-tongued messenger to Aramuri, and offered to give up to the king of Nepala the wealth and the kingdom of Jayapira. And when messengers from Nepala came to him, and arrangements were made, he with the Kashmirian army entered Nepala. He reached the Kālagandikā, left his army on its banks, and crossed the river with only a few followers. He was introduced into the Nepala court by the feudatory kings, and was well received by the king who caused him to sit down in his presence. But as he was weary with travelling, the king soon dismissed him, Devasharmma came to his lodgings and there passed the remainder of the day. On the next day, he and the king after drinking retired to privacy to settle their affairs. The minister told the king of Nepala that the accumulated wealth of Jayapira was with the army, the fact being known to the king of Kashmira alone, and to some of his faithful officers. " I wish to hear from the king of Kashmira," continued the minister, "where he has kept these treasures, by holding out to him the hope of his being set free if he would give them up. I have not therefore brought the army here, for if they to whom the riches are entrusted be with the army, it will be impossible to get the treasures. But if the soldiers be brought here one by one and seized they may give out the secret" Thus deceiving the king of Nepala, he with the king's permission went to Jayipira. He was grieved to see the king,

[p.96]:and clearing the room of all others, asked his master if he still kept up his spirits. "You may succeed," said he, " if your courage fails thee not." "When I am thus unarmed," replied his master, " what can I do though I possess courage." "If your courage has not been "lost," rejoined the minister, " the danger can be got over. You can leap from this window, and cross over to the other side, for the army that is there is yours." " Without a leather bag," said the king, "the river cannot be crossed, and if a leather bag be thrown from this height, it will burst, so your plan is useless ; and after being thus humiliated I do not wish to die without first chastising the foe." "Wait for two dandas," said the minister, " and then come alone and you will see the plan I propose to cross the river, and follow it without fear." The king then retired and passed the usual time out of the room, then entering it alone he found his minister lying dead on the ground, with a piece of cloth tied round the neck; and on it was written the following sentence — " I am but dead to-day, my body is stuffed with air, and will be for you a leather bag which will not break ; ride on me and cross the river. I have tied a cloth round my thighs, thrust your legs within it up to your thighs." The sentence was written in the blood of his body, which he had taken out with his nails. At first the king was surprised and grieved at the sight, but after a while he availed himself of the opportunity, and plunging into the stream, reached the

[p.97]: opposite bank. There, being master of his army, he, within a short time, destroyed the king of Nepala, and overran his country, even before his guards knew of his escape. It is strange that the hour which gave birth to the rebellious Jajja, gave birth also to the virtuous Devasharmma who was like his father Mitrasharama? The king in spite of his victories thought every thing lost, because of the death of his minister, who was to him like the strange jewel, the possessor of which cannot be killed. In his conquests, he forgot his humiliation, but he could not forget his minister.

The king then conquered the country of women, but prided more on his conquest over his passions on that occasion. From this kingdom he brought the seat of Karna. He raised a building for the court of justice ; and being distant from his treasury, he created another treasury office, which accompanied him in his march and was called Chalaganja, or travelling treasury. His kingdom extended to the four seas. He again returned to his country, and surrounded by his feudatory kings, enjoyed the glory he had attained.

The king discovered a copper ore* in a hill at Krama, from which he brought copper, and caused one hundred koti minus one dinnaras to be struck in his name. He alone, the king prided, who will strike a hundred koti coins will beat^nie. Thus he ruled to destroy the

* See Appendix L.

[p.98]: pride of kings, and left a task to be accomplished by other princes.

King oppressed his subjects:

Unfortunately for his subjects, the king left the path of his grandsire, and walked in that of his father. The Kayasthas advised him that it was useless to undergo the fatigues of foreign conquest when he could accumulate wealth in his own country. The king took their advice, and began to oppress his subjects. Shivadasa and others of his treasurers excited his cupidity. Thenceforth he spent tho revenues of Kashmira according to his pleasure, and as advised by the Kayasthas. The devices by which he had conquered other kings, were now employed to enslave his own men. The measures which had formerly been intended for the comfort of the good, were now adopted for the oppression of the people. He murdered many persons ; and excepting those who flattered him, no one spoke well of him, even in dream. Prostitutes and kings both commit sins : the one cruelty and the other fickleness. Their senses are obscured by sins, The one is not grieved even to kill his parents, the other to embrace low men. In this way the king reigned for three years with such cruelty, and plundered even the cultivator's share of the harvest. His gain over-turned his senses; he considered the Kayasthas his friends, though they gave him but a small share of the plunder, appropriating to themselves the rest. Even Brahmanas who always have great patience, began to oppose the king. Some of them fled from the country

[p.99]: as the king began to kill many of them. ; but at last they combined and stood together, and the king could not destroy them, though he continued to plunder them. The king's character was greatly changed, and he was spoken ill of in poetry by the panditas. The cruel king once ordered that ninety-nine Brahmanas should be killed in one day. And when he was sitting on the banks of the Chandrabhaga after having forcibly taken possession of Tulamula, he was informed that ninety-nine Brahmanas had, perished in the 'waters' of that river. From that time he, ceased to take possession of lands granted to Brahnianas, but he continued to take possession of those possessed by men of other castes.

The Brahmnnas who dwelt at Tulamula once came to say something to the king, but were struck in his presence by his door-keeper, and consequently were very angry. " Brahmanas were never insulted before, even in the presence of Manu, Mandhata, Rama and other great kings ; " they said, " and when angry they can destroy in a moment the heaven with Indra, the earth with her mountains, and the nether world with its Naga — chief." The king who would not ask for advice, and was deseertd by his feudatory kings, replied with supercilious pride. "You cunning people who eat by begging, what pride is this of yours that you pretend to do what the Rishis did." The Brahmanas were cowed down by his frown, but one Iitti thus replied: "We conduct ourselves according to the times, as you are a ;

[p.100]: king, even so we are Rishis." The king scornfully enquired: "Art thou the great Rishi Vishvamitra or Vashishta or Agastha?" And, as if flaming with anger, the other replied, " If you he Harishchandra, Trishanku or Nahusha, then I am one of those you mention." The King then answered with a smile, " the curse of Vishvamitra and others destroyed Harishchandra, &c, what will your anger effect? " The Brahmana struck the earth with his hand, and said, " will not my anger bring down Brahmadanda on thee?" Then said the angry king, " let fall the Brahmadanda, why delay it longer ?" " O cruel man there it falls." And no sooner had Iitti said so than a golden bar from the canopy fell on the king. The wound degenerated into crysipelatous inflammation, and insects generated on the suppuration. He suffered great pain, the sample of what he would have to suffer in hell. After five nights, he, who had courted danger, died. Thus the king who used to punish without fault, was chastised by Brahmadanda and perished. This powerful though fickle king reigned for thirty one years.

Kings thirsting for wealth, and restrained by no limits, take to evil ways, like the fishes which thirsting for muddy water leave their place and go on the dry land. The latter are caught by fishermen, and the former are sent to hell. His mother Amritaprabha set up a god named Amritakeshava for the salvation of his soul.