« PreviousContinue »
This feature of Kalinga is borne out by the Tamil word "kalingam" for cotton cloth which probably had the original significance of cotton cloth of a particular kind, extended later on as a general name for all cotton stuff. So far, therefore, as Sanskrit literature is concerned, Kalinga was a well-known kingdom occupying the geographical position that it did within later historical times, and according to one reference in the Great epic it was the land of virtue where Dharma himself, the god of righteousness, performed a yajña in a particular spot which has since borne the name Yajñapura of the later Jajpur.
Passing from the Sanskrit to Buddhist evidence, we find Kalinga mentioned as a kingdom with Dantapura as its capital. The earliest reference we get is in the Kumbhakāra Jātaka where there is a reference to a Kalinga king by name Karandu who is spoken of as a contemporary of Nagnajit of Gāndhāra and Bhima of Vidarbha. This is confirmed by the Uttaradhyayana Sutra. In the Mahagovinda Suttanta there is a reference to another king of Kalinga by name Sattabahū as a contemporary of Dattaraṭṭa (Dhrita rāshṭra) of Kāģi, who is mentioned in the Satapatha Brāhmaṇa. This Sattanta gives the information that the capital of Kalinga was Dantapura. There is another reference, again from Buddhist sources, which seems to give us an insight into the division of Kalinga into two kingdoms at any rate, while in regard to its general features it seems to support the general description of it found in the Mahabharata. The Ceylon Chronicle Mahāvamsa giving the history of the migration of Vijaya into Ceylon, describes the adventures of his mother the Bengal princess, the daughter of the Queen, who was herself a princess of Kalinga. When she was sent into exile for her lascivious waywardness by the father, the king, she departed the kingdom in the company of a caravan of merchants going to Magadha. While they were on the way through the territory of Ladha the whole party was set upon by a lion. The party scattered, and she fled, as did also the rest of them, to save her life, but accidentally took the path by which the lion came. When the lion returned he found the princess, and was so charmed with her beauty that he begot upon
Dialogues of the Buddha, II; 270.
her a son and a daughter. The son was called Simhabahu or Sihabahu because of the peculiar feature that he had the hands of a lion. When ultimately he returned to the grandfather's kingdom by the achievement of killing the lion, his father, which had grown so troublesome to the frontiers of the kingdom of Bengal, he was given permission by the grandfather, or rather his uncle who married his mother and became subsequently ruler of Bengal, to clear the forest and set up a kingdom of his own. Thus was said to have been founded the kingdom of north Kalinga, at least one part of it with a capital Sihapura or Simhapura; and this was probably the forest reigon of Kalinga immediately adjoining the territory of Bengal in the lower reaches of the Ganges. It is very likely that the older kingdom lying farther south did continue, as we find the kingdom of Kalinga described in early Tamil classical literature as composed of two parts with their respective capitals Kapilapura and Simhapura which may have reference to the centuries immediately preceding the Christian era. Scholars that first studied the Mahavamsa interpreted this story as involving the banishment of the Bengal princess from Bengal to Lata or Guzaret as they misequated Ladha with Laṭa. It is now beyond doubt that the Ladha, under reference, is eastern Prakrit form of Rāḍha, a division of Vajjabhūmi on the banks of the Sone, or much rather, between the Sone and the Ganges, what might be called in modern language West Bengal.
Kalinga is known to the Purāņas, and one of the Nandas Nandivarman is said to have conquered it. This statement seems to receive some confirmation from the reference in the Hathigumpha inscription to the aqueduct constructed. by Nandarāja at period previous to the accession of Chandragupta to the Magadha throne. It is wellknown that the only conquest effected by the great Buddhist Emperor Aśoka after his accession to the throne of his father was the Kingdom of Kalinga. In his inscription the kingdom is spoken of as a single kingdom. The Hathigumpha inscription, already referred to, of Khāravela speaks of it as a single kingdom as well, but with a capital which is read as Pritūdakadarbha. The Aśoka Edicts do not mention the capital of Kalinga as such, but the fact that Asoka's Kalinga Edicts are found in Dauli (Tosali)
and Jaugada seems to lend colour to the inference that the first was the capital of the kingdom in the days of Asoka. Asoka's war was so destructive in character that it brought about a permanent revulsion of feeling in the humane emperor against war. Tamil literature describes a war which is similarly of a gruesome character. This was a fratricidal war between the cousin rulers of the two kingdoms of Kalinga with their respective capitals Kapilapura and Simhapura. As a consequence of this war a famine is said to have supervened. That is as far as we are enabled to go with the means at our disposal till about the early centuries of the Christian era.
In the following centuries Kalinga must have been more or less of a flourishing kingdom, as we find frequent reference to it as supplying brides, heirs, and sometimes even usurpers to Ceylon, the ruling dynasty of which regarded itself as related by blood with the Kalinga rulers. According to traditional history the early centuries of the Christian era for Kalinga are said to have been centuries of Yavana rule and great efforts have been made to connect this Yavana rule with the Greeks who are readily taken to have established a kingdom there as a result of the raids carried into the heart of India under the Greek rulers Demetrius and Menandar in which both Madhyamika (Nagar near Chittore) in Rā pūtānā and Saketa (Oudh) suffered; but there is so far no evidence whatsoever of an irrefutable character of the Greek occupation of Kalinga and of the perpetuation of a dynasty in that region. The recent reading of the Hathigumpha inscription seems to make this definitely impossible, as Khāravela the Kalinga ruler claims to have driven the Yavanas (Greeks) then in occupation of Muttra. This indicates that if ever the Greeks reached as far east as Kalinga their invasion was not of a character to warrant the assumption of a permanent occupation. We have no evidence of other Greek invasions so far and the term Yavana does not always mean Greek in Sanskrit literature.
In the century immediately preceding the Christian era, or a little before that, Kalinga was a well-formed kingdom set over against the rising kingdom of the Satavahanas of the Deccan. The prosperous rule indicated by the Hathigumpha inscription under Khāravela does not appear to have been of such a character.
war between the two
It is just possible that the fratricidal kingdoms referred to in the Tamil epics Silappadhikaram and Maņimākhalai may have been a historical war that followed soon after the rule of Kharavela of Kalinga. In the wars in the centuries immediately following the Christian era, Kalinga does. not figure as an independent kingdom. The same Tamil epics that refer to the march of Karikāla to the north do not make any mention, of the Kalinga kingdom although they do refer to Vajrānāḍu, a kingdom on the banks of the Sone, Magadha and Avanti. Among the conquests of Gautamiputra Satakarni, figure the hills of Mahendra and Malaya. Mahendra is the well-known Mahendragiri, Malaya is the Maleus of Pliny and seems to stand for Malyavan, one of the far-eastern peaks of the Vindhya mountains, quite on the borderland of Kalinga. That probably means that Kalinga was among his conquests. When the Andhra power declined Kalinga seems to have fallen to the share of the usurper from Ayodhya Sri Vira Purusha Datta of the Ikshvaku race. Under the Guptas, Kalinga seems to have formed an integral part of the empire, although it is just possible that their Vākāṭaka contemporaries might have possessed a part of it. During all this period Kalinga was in pretty much the same religious con⚫ dition as most other Indian States, but in Jain religious history Kalinga figures as one of the influential Jain centres and the Khāravela inscription lends colour to this claim. Similar claims were made by the Buddhists, and, if the Ceylon Buddhist history is to be believed, there were Buddhist settlements of importance as well in Kalinga. When the Buddhists speak of Kalinga, Dantapurra figures always as the capital. There is occasional mention of Simhapura, apparently the capital of northern Kalinga, the foundation of Simhabahu with which Ceylon kept itself in communication.
With the fall of the Gupta empire the kingdom of Kalinga seems to have emerged into some importance. The foundation of the Kesari dynasty ascribed to the fifth century seems to have had its capital first of all in the interior in a place called Yayāti. nagar, from the first important ruler of this dynasty. This came to be known later on as Adinagar and as Sadinagar, in both of which forms it figures in the inscriptions of Rajendra Chola as we
shall see later on. This place has been indentified recently with a place called Sonepur on the river Mahanadi. There are several references to the conquest of Kalinga by the southern Kings, the earliest of which was the invasion of Kirtivarman, the Western Chăulkhya Kalinga is referred to in his inscription of the year A.D. 567, but figures in this record in a more or less conventional list. There is a similar reference under Pulikesan but in a much less conventional fashion, as his Aihole inscription states it more clearly that both Kosala and Kalinga submitted to him. The next in order would be its conquest by Dantidurga, the first Rashtrakūta. In this case again Kalinga figures among a conventional list of his conquests. In a record of A. D. 877 Krishna II, Rāshṭrakūṭa is said to have subdued Kalinga among other kingdoms. These various references lead us to the inference that Kalinga retained its historical existence as an independent kingdom, and came into touch with the neighbouring powers occasionally. It must be remembered that from the character of the information accessible to us now it is only when it comes into hostile contact with its neighbours, that it is likely to be mentioned at all. In the course of these centuries Kalinga seems to have passed under the rule of a new dynasty, that of the Eastern Gangas, the traditional date of foundation of which is in the earlier half of the eighth century A. D. With the advent of this dysnasty Kalinga seems to come a little more prominently into view.
With the rise of the western Chāļukkyas the territory extending from the Godavari southwards along the East Coast passed into their hands, probably from those of the Pallavas of Kanchi. Early in the seventh century this new acquisition was constituted into a separate viceroyalty with its headquarters first at Vengi, which was probably later on transferred to Rajahmundri early in the eleventh century. This viceroyalty soon became independent as the kingdom of the eastern Chaļukhyas, and, as such, it was in constant contact with the kingdom of Kalinga on its northern frontier. The wars under the Rashtrakutas, already noted, against Kalinga must have been the side-issues in their constant wars with the eastern Chāļukhyas. The definite political subordination of the eastern Chaļukhyas to the Cholas throws