Middle Chola Temples

by S. R. Balasubrahmanyam | 1975 | 141,178 words

This volume of Chola Temples covers Rajaraja I to Kulottunga I in the timeframe A.D. 985-1070. The Cholas of Southern India left a remarkable stamp in the history of Indian architecture and sculpture. Besides that, the Chola dynasty was a successful ruling dynasty even conquering overseas regions....

Rajendra deva II was (also) a great hero, who turned the impending rout and disaster at Koppam into a great victory and crowned himself emperor on the battlefield. Jayangondar’s Kalingattupparani describes this coronation thus: “Koppaiyir peru Kalattiley mudi kavittavan”. After this victory, he carried a huge booty including the Chalukyan queens, the royal treasures, elephants and horses of the Western Chalukyas to his palace at Gangapuri, where he celebrated a virabhishekam. His prasastis start with one of three historical introductions. One of these begins with “Irattaipadi elarai ilakkamum kondu” and mentions his conquest of Kollapuram and the erection of a pillar of victory there. The other two historical introductions begin with “tirumagal maruviya sengol vendari” and “tiru madu puviyenum”.

According to the Muvar ula (Vikrama Cholan Ula, stanza 20), he captured a thousand elephants of the Chalukyas at Koppam with the help of the single elephant he rode:

... parralarai veppat tadugalattu laayiramum koppat torugalirraar kondonum”.

The most important event of his reign was the continuing war with the Western Chalukyas. An engagement took place at Mudakkaru (winding river) sometime before his ninth regnal year (a.d. 1061) and it appears that the king himself, Raja Mahendra the heir-apparent, and the king’s brother Vira Rajen-dra all participated in it. The Chalukyas were again defeated.

The marital relations between the Vengi and the Tanjavur houses were further strengthened, by the marriage of Rajendra deva IPs daughter Madhurantaki to the son of Rajaraja Narendra of the Eastern Chalukyas, viz., Rajendra II or Rajiga who later on ascended the Chola throne with the title of Kulottunga (I) in a.d. 1070 (See genealogical table below).

Rajendra deva II made an endowment, yielding 120 kalams of paddy, for the enacting of the drama “Rajarajesvara nata-kam” at the Sri Rajarajesvaram temple at Tanjavur (sixth year, ARE 55 of 1893; SII, II, 67): this drama was possibly a depiction of the glory of the temple of the Rajarajesvaram. The royal order was issued to provide a tuni of paddy daily to Santik-Kuttan Tiruvalan Vijayarajendra Acharyan and his descendants, for staging the Nata during the great Vaigasi festival of the Lord. The annual allowance of 120 kalams of paddy was to be given out of the temple treasury.

During his days, one of his local feudatories, Miladudaiya Narasingapanmar, rebuilt of stone the Ulagalanda Perumal temple at Tirukkovalur.

Cholas of Tanjavur:
Kundavai (Sr) & Rajaraja I;
Rajendra I & Kundavai (Jr);
Rajendra Deva II & Ammanga-devi;
Rajasundari = Rajaraja (Eastern Ganga)

Eastern Chalukyas of Vengi:
Vimaladitya = Medeva Mahadevi (also a Chola princess);
Rajaraja Narendra;
Vijayaditya VII;
Rajendra II (Chalukya) (Kulottunga Chola I)

There are some interesting references to the various royal relatives who held high posts under Rajendra deva II. There were as many as thirteen—a paternal uncle, four younger brothers, six sons and two grandsons. They were provincial governors among others and held such titles as Chola-Pandyan, Chola-Gangan etc.

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