Friday, 5 October 2012


The Chalukyas, Pallavas, and Pandyas

After Satvahan, the next great empire in the Deccan was the Chalukya Empire. Pulakesin I, first ruler of the Chalukya dynasty. Pulakesin II was the greatest ruler of the Chalukya dynasty. The Chalukyas built their kingdom on the ruins of the Vakatakas, who in turn had built theirs on the remains of the Satavahanas. They established their capital at Vatapi (modern Badami). The Chalukyas were sworn enemies of the Pallavas and rose to power in Karnataka. The first great ruler of the Chalukya dynasty was Pulakesin I. The kingdom was further extended by his sons Kirtivarman and Mangalesa by waging many successful wars against the neighbours including Mauryans of the Konkans. They were overthrown by a chief named Dantidurga who laid the foundation of the next great empire of Karnataka and Maharashtra, that of Rashtrakutas.

Pallavas established a capital at Kanchipuram (Tamil Nadu state) and came to hold sway in the south. Sivaskandhavarman who ruled in the first part of the fourth century CE was an independent ruler. He established his capital at Kanchi which continued as Pallava capital for centuries. Huen Tsang the Chinese monk-scholar, who visited Kanchi in 642 CE, writes that the Pallava country was more than thousand miles in area and calls it Dravidanadu. They were defeated by the Guptas in about 360 AD but continued to rule until the Cholas finally conquered their lands. Later, in the 9th century, the Pallava themselves were definitely conquered by the Chola from Tanjore and became their vassals. 

Pandyas were the longest ruling dynasty of Indian history. They ruled the southern most part of India and the capital of the Pandya kings was Madurai (Tamil Nadu). First Indian Ambassador from Pandya Dynasty is sent to Rome in 26 BC. After defeating the kalabhras the Pandya rulers ruled between 550 AD to 950 AD. They were called as first Pandyas. After the fall of the great pallavas and the cholas once again the Pandyas ruled the Tamil country from 1190 AD to 1310 AD. The first Pandyan Empire continued till the beginning of the Tenth Century A.D. The Cholas defeated the Pandyan ruler, Rajasimha II. Later, Veerapandya (A.D. 946-966), the last ruler of the first Pandyan Empire had been defeated and killed by Adhithya Chola. It was the end of the first Pandyan Empire.

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