|Author:Laxman Burdak, IFS (R)|
Kipin (किपिन) was a country mentioned by Chinese writers. Kipin of Chinese is the same as Kophene, that is Kabul and Ghazni, of the Greek writings and the Kubha and/or Kapisa of the Sanskrit literature.
- Kipina (किपिन) (AS, p.189)
- Kophene (of the Greeks)
- Kubha and/or Kapisa (of the Sanskrit)
It has been suggested that the very name Kapphina or Kappina may be related to Chinese Kipin or Kapin or Greek Kophene. Kipin of Chinese is the same as Kophene of the Greek writings and the Kubha and/or Kapisa of the Sanskrit literature. Pāṇini teaches that the name of the Kamboja king could be same as the name of his kingdom. It therefore looks quite probable that name Kapphina was not a proper name but an appellation of its ruler and likewise may be related to name Kipin, Kapin and Kophene which are the Chinese and the Greek versions of the Sanskrit Kubha (Kabul) and Kapisa respectively.
Alexander Cunningham writes: "Kipin is one of the most famous but also most puzzling terms of the Chinese geography of north-western India (now Pakistan). As a geographical term the word 'Kipin' is not to be found in Indian literature. We come across King Maha Kapphina or Maha Kaphina, the hero of the many Buddhist legends. He is described as ruling in Kukutavati, a frontier region and this region is definitely localized in the extreme north-west of India (now Pakistan). According to Buddhist traditions, Kaphina was a Brahman. He met the Buddha during the latter's journey to the north-west. Kukatagiri, as mentioned by Pāṇini (V. 4. 147) seems to represent some low peaks of Hindukush in Afghanistan. Thus, Kipin or Kukutawati was situated in Afghanistan near the borders of Pakistan. It is probably Huphina of Hiuen Tsang or Huppian which is Kophen (=the kingdom of Kabul). King Kapphina of the Buddhist legends was the king of this region".
King Maha Kapphina was, in all probability a powerful ruler whose kingdom besides Kabul (Kophene), probably also included parts of Gandhara. Kipin described in the Hou Han-shu may represent the region NWFP (now in Pakistan) dominated in turn by the Greeks, the Sakas, the Parthians and the Kushanas.
Maha Kapphina is said to have met Buddha after crossing three northern rivers i.e. river Aravacchā (probably Swat?), the Nīlavāhana and the Chandrabhaga. This shows that he must have come from north/north-west as river Chandrabhaga is identified with river Chenab and Nīlavāhana with river Indus (Nilab).
According to scholars like D. D. Kosambi, Kapphina was of a Kshatriya varna but according to Alexander Cunningham, Kapphina was of a Brahman varna.But these conflicting views are least problematic here since Kambojas in ancient times were given to both Kshatrya as well as Brahmanical pursuits. Pali texts' legend of Maha Kapphina however, does not specify anywhere that Kapphina was a Brahmin or a Kshatriya. But internal evidence of Kapphina legend points to his belonging to the Kshatriya varna.
Maha Kapphina is described by Buddha as pale (or white) (? odata), thin and having a characteristic thin and prominent nose (tanukam tunganasikam).
Alexander Cunningham writes that ....Professor Lassen has already remarked that the name of Kipin, which is so frequently mentioned by other Chinese authors, is not once noticed by Hwen Thsang. Remusat first suggested that Kipin was the country on the Kophes or Kabul river ; and this suggestion has ever since been accepted by the unanimous consent of all writers on ancient India, by whom the district is now generally called Kophene. It is this form of the name of Kipin that I propose to identify with the Hu-phi-na of Hwen Thsang, as it seems to me scarcely possible that this once famous province can have remained altogether unnoticed by him, when we know that he must have passed through it, and that the name was still in use for more than a century after his time. I have already stated my suspicion that there has been some interchange of names between the province and its capital. This suspicion is strengthened when it is found that all difficulties are removed, and the most complete identification obtained, by the simple interchange of the two names. Thus Hu-phi-na will represent Kophene, or Kipin, the country on the Kabul river, and Fo-li-shi-sa-tang-na, or Urddhasthana, will represent Ortostana, which, as we know from several classical authorities, was the actual capital of this province.
[p.35]: I may remark that Huphina is a very exact Chinese transcript of Kophen, whereas it would be a very imperfect transcript of Hupian, as one syllable would be altogether unrepresented, and the simple p would be replaced by an aspirate. The correct transcript of Hupian would be Hu-pi-yan-na.
विजयेन्द्र कुमार माथुर ने लेख किया है ...किपिन (AS, p.189) चीन के प्राचीन इतिहास-लेखकों ने भारत के इस प्रदेश का कई बार उल्लेख किया है.चीनी इतिहास सीन हानशू (Thien Han Schu) के अनुसार साइवांग या शक नामक जाति यूचियों (यूची=ऋषिक) द्वारा अपने निवास स्थान से निकाल दिए जाने पर दक्षिण में आकर किपिन देश में राज्य करने लगी (दे. जर्नल ऑफ एशियाटिक सोसायटी 1903, पृ. 22) सिल्वनलेवी के मत में किपिन कश्मीर ही का चीनी नाम है किंतु स्टेनकोनो के अनुसार कपिश या पूर्वी गंधार को चीनी लेखकों ने किपिन कहा है (देखें एपिग्राफिक इंडिका 16, पृ. 291). चीनी यात्री सुंगयुन ने भी किपिन का उल्लेख किया है. किपिन कुभा (=काबुल) का रूपांतर भी हो सकता है.
- 1. Proceedings and Transactions of the All-India Oriental Conference, 1933, p 117, All-India Oriental Conference. 2. Indian Linguistics, 1966, p 499, Linguistic Society of India.
- Śivasvāmin's Kapphiṇābhyudaya, or, Exaltation of King Kapphiṇa: or, Exaltation of King Kapphiṇa, 1989, Gauri Shankar, Michael Hahn; Northern India According to the Shui-ching-chu, 1950, p 66-67, Luciano Petech, Daoyuan Li. The Ancient Geography of India: By Alexander Cunningham. New Enl. Ed. / Foreword by B. Ch. Chhabra ; Introd. by Asim Kumar Chatterjee ; Additional Notes by Jamna Das Akhtar, 1975, p xxvii, Alexander Cunningham.
- Ashtadhyayi IV.1.175.
- The Ancient Geography of India: 1975, p xxvii, Alexander Cunningham.
- The Ancient Geography of India: 1975, p xxvii, Alexander Cunningham.
- Dictionary of Pali Proper Names, 2003, p 473, G. P. Malalasekera.
- The Culture and Civilization of Ancient India in Historical Outline, 2000, p 120; Ancient India: A History of Its Culture and Civilization, 1965, Damodar Dharmanand Kosambi.
- The Ancient Geography of India: By Alexander Cunningham. New Enl. Ed. / Foreword by B. Ch. Chhabra; Introd. by Asim Kumar Chatterjee ; Additional Notes by Jamna Das Akhtar, 1975, p xxvii, Alexander Cunningham.
- Ānanda: Papers on Buddhism and Indology: a Felicitation Volume Presented to Ananda Weihena Palliya Guruge on His Sixtieth Birthday, 1990, p 175, Ananda W. P. Guruge, Y Karunadasa - Buddhism.
- See: Dictionary of Pali Proper Names, 2003, p 473 seq, G. P. Malalasekera.
- Jataka ii. 284; Kindered Sayings II, pp 193-94; Proceedings and Transactions of the All-India Oriental Conference, Item notes: 7th 1933, p 118, Published by Bihar and Orissa Research Society; The Culture and Civilization of Ancient India in Historical Outline, 2000, p 120, D. D. Kosambi; Dictionary of Pali Proper Names, 2003, p 475, G. P. Malalasekera.
- The Ancient Geography of India/Kabul,p.34-35
- Lassen, ' Points in the History of the Greek Eings of Kabul,' p. 102.
- Aitihasik Sthanavali by Vijayendra Kumar Mathur, p.189