In ‘Ramappa Temple -A UNESCO World Heritage Site(Pt. II))’ will discuss about the Ramappa Temple of Palampet at length. History of Kakatiya Dynasty and description, architectural excelance of the Ramappa Temple and other relevant aspects will be documented in this post ‘‘Ramappa Temple -A UNESCO World Heritage Site(Pt. II))’
Ramappa Temple,(UNESCO nominated) at Palampet:
The great temple of Ramappa Temple Nominated as UNESCO World Heritage is situated near the small village of Palampet in the Mulug Taluk of the Warrangal District at a distance of about 65 kilometers North-west of Hanamkonda. It set in a background of beautiful hills, luxuriant vegetation, and an abundance of water. The magnificent lake nearby covers an area of nearly thirteen square kilometers and formed by a ring of hills on their sides with a colossal bund only on one side in the North, an excellent testimony to the care and skill of the Kakatiyas in irrigation works of a high order. (Dr. G. Yazdani says: “Warangal, the metropolis of this dynasty, abounds in magnificent tanks, and the titanic dykes and sluice-gate of Pakhal, Lakhnaram, and Ramappa lake are object lessons even to the modern engineer.”).
- Kakatiyan Dynasty:
It was an important center of the Kakatiyas, one of the major dynasties that ruled over the Deccan and shaped its history civilization, and culture.
A brief resume of the history of the Kakatiya dynasty will serve to explain the real significance of the architecture and sculpture of these temples.
The Kakatiyas have a place of honor among the ruling families of medieval Dekkan “by virtue of their numerous conquests, their vast empire, their liberal patronage of arts and letters, and the great fervor with which they defended Hindu culture and Hindu institutions against the repeated onslaughts of Islam.”
The origin of the dynastic name Kakatiyas is quite obscure. According to some sources it derived from a goddess by name, Kakati, (when the rulers worshipped), and according to others, from a town of that name. The earliest inscription of the Kakatiyas, so far discovered, dated in Saka 1001 equal to A.D. 1079, although an inscription of the Western Calukyas of Vengi refers to a certain Kakartya Gunda, obviously one of their feudatories in the 10th Century, who seems to have been an early ancestor of this family. Starting as feudatories of the Eastern Calukyas of Vengi they seem to passed into a similar position under another dynasty, namely the Western Calukyas of Kalyani, whom they served loyally until circumstances favored their rise in the last quarter of the 11th Century.
The first three kings of this dynasty as given in the later inscriptions of the Kakatiyas mere names; and the beginnings of the Kakatiya rule said to have commenced with Prola II who attacked his master Taila III of the Western Calukya dynasty of Kalyani and, although defeated and captured him in battle, released him subsequently out of “devotion and love”, as stated in an inscription at Hanamkonda. Starting with little more than Warangal and its immediate vicinity Prola II conquered the greater part of the modern Telingana in Hyderabad State and laid the foundations for an independent and powerful kingdom. Prola II’s son, Rudra ruled from A.D. 1159-1195 and conquered the Eastern districts of the Andhra stretching as far as the Sea. The sacred Saiva shrine of Srisailam became the southern boundary of the Kakatiya Kingdom about this time.
To the North and West, the Yadavas, another feudatory family of the Calukyas, who had also grown independent, formed an impenetrable bar to territorial expansion in that direction, and although in the North-east Kalinga and other regions were not under any strong ruler, the Kakatiyas never seriously attempted an advance in that direction.
You Must Read: ‘Ramappa Temple -A UNESCO World Heritage Site(Pt.I)
Rudra succeeded by Mahadeva, who had a short reign of about four years, and after his death, probably in a war with the Yadavas, came Ganapati the greatest ruler of this dynasty. He extended the territory of the Kakatiyas of this dynasty. he extended the territory of the Kakatiyas as far as Kanchi (Chingleput District, Madras State) and led expeditions even as far as Jambai in the Tiruchirapalli District, in Madras State. South India at this time divided among a number of princelings, and a domestic intrigue in the petty kingdom of Vikramasimhapura or Nelore gave Ganpati an adequate excuse for intervention.
Ganapati succeeded by Rudrama, his daughter, whom he brought up as a son from her childhood. Dressed in male attire she went about as a man and even addressed as a man. Despite trouble from the Yadavas, her neighboring kingdom, and the refractory attitude of one or two of her proud subordinates (who could not brook a woman’s rule) Rudrama managed to keep the kingdom intact and pass it on to her grandson Prataparudra, the last independent ruler of this dynasty.
Prataparudra began his rule by asserting his authority over the length and breadth of all his ancestral dominion and bid fair to emulate Ganapati in his military achievement. But he had to reckon with a far stronger enemy than the rulers of these small kingdoms in the South. His general led victorious marches into the South and boasted of their groups against the Tamilian rulers of the South, but against the Muslims from the North, they found themselves unsuccessful.
They assume quite a defensive attitude against the Muslims and behind the strong fort-wall and ramparts of Warangal, this defensive attitude looked fairly satisfactory when the besieging party was not large. But when the Muslims determined to subjugate the Deccan and set out in right earnest defeat was inevitable for the kingdoms of the South, and although the promise of tribute and subordination warded off danger for a time, these insincere and often broken promises led to the ultimate defeat and capture of Prataprudra in 1326 A.D. He was being led as a prisoner to Delhi when he committed suicide on the banks of the Narmada, unable to bear the burden of grief and the humiliation of defeat.
The shrines at Palampet belong to the period of the Kakatiyas and constitute perhaps the finest examples of medieval Deccan Temples. The Temples of Palampet were the pious works of this chief, Recharla Rudra, in 1135 (1213 A.D) during the reign of Kakatiya Ganapatideva. His inscription running to nearly 204 lines engraved on four sides of a polished basalt pillar now erected in a small mandapa within the courtyard of the temples enumerates the glorious achievements of this feudatory family and commemorates the construction of the main Temple at Palampet in Saka 1135 by Rudra. It took around 40 years for the construction of the temple.
An inscription of General Rudra at Palampet speaks of his exploits in repelling many enemies like Nagati-bhupala who invaded the country. The details of his achievements not clear, but from the meager evidence available it evident that Ganapati’s predecessor on the Kakatiya throne, by name, Mahadeva met his death in a war with the Yadavas of Devagiri, and Ganapati himself made a prisoner. During the transitional period till Ganapati firmly planted on the Kakatiya throne, Rudra protected the kingdom from further dangers. Another inscription from a place called Upparapalli, not far from Palampet, states that Rudra bore with success the burden of the Kakati realm the high minister of the Kakati king Ganapati-deva.
Description of the Ramappa Temple (Nominated as UNESCO World Heritage)
The main temple of Ramappa is of cruciform plan on a platform 6’ 4” high. The plinth of the platform instead of being plain divided into a foliating surface which gives a very pleasing effect to the general appearance of the monument. The platform affords a space ten feet all around the temple, forming a sort of promenade for the devout pilgrims, whence they can gaze on the long panels of figures that adorn the exterior of the building. The sanctum is on the Western side and towards the East, North, and South the temple has policies with beautiful, almost life-size figures of female figures on either side of the doors of these porticoes.
You Must Read: ‘Ramappa Temple -A UNESCO World Heritage Site(Pt.I)
The figures exquisitely carved and arranged in pairs in the form of brackets under the caves. This temple is famous for these figure brackets which spring from the shoulders of the outer pillars of the temple and nominally support the ponderous Chajja slabs. They are mere ornaments having no architectural purpose and represent the intermediate stage between their earlier analogs at Sanchi and the later examples at Vijayanagar.
The walls of the Sanctuary decorated outwardly with pilasters crowned with Sikharas of the Nagara and Dravida type disposed of alternately, and in the middle on each side is a miniature spire, a copy of the big spire on the top of the Sanctuary.
The style of the main Sikhara was characterized by Fergusson as,” a compromise between the styles of North and South India,” largely because the tiers of pillars rising vertically give the structure an Indo-Aryan appearance, while the railings and the bold cornices have horizontal courses characteristic of the Dravidian style. The spire built of light spongy bricks, and the use of stone seems to avoided probably in order to reduce the weight of the building.
To enter the temple from any of the three porches the visitors have to ascend several steps, as the floor of the building is 5 feet higher than the platform on which it stands. The Hall or Maha-mandapa measures 41 feet each way, land has a square apartment (18’ X 18’) enclosed by four exquisitely carved pillars in the middle. A platform of about 3½ feet high runs around the hall, and on it built eight small cells for the images of several deities. The ante-chamber or antrarala measures 51’8” X 14’10”. The sanctum sanctorum entered through another richly carved doorway and encloses a space of 15’8” square at the center of which stands the linga on a high pedestal of black basalt.
The arrangements of columns divided the ceiling into several compartments, each of which is superbly compartments, each of which superbly carved, the decorations consisting of a variety of floral and geometrical patterns, from the full-blown lotus to the most intricate honeycomb scroll. The ornamentation of the four central columns of the hall and the architraves above them extremely rich and subtle and we may admit that “no chased work in gold or silver could possibly be finer.”
The architecture of the building is lofty and grand. The high plinth (10 feet) the lofty pillars (15 feet) the spacious hall (41 feet x 41 feet), the ponderous beams and ceiling slabs, and the majestic sikhara-all are a witness to the high aspirations and breadth of vision of the builder. The temple represents the full development of the medieval Deccan style, which is sometimes termed Chalukyan.
In front of the temple the ruined Nandi mandapa, the first structure to be noticed by the visitors when he approaches Ramappa temple from the entrance on the East. The mandapa stands on a high stylobate, the sides of which adorned with carved panels bearing floral designs and figures of elephants and of musicians (Gandharvas) in successive rows. The roof and the pillars of the mandapa fallen down, but the pavement on which the columns fixed is intact and square in plan. The huge stone figure of Nandi now in the eastern portico of the temple must have been here formerly.
To the north of the main temple situated a subsidiary shrine constructed on a terrace 3’6” high and approached by a flight of steps, on either side of which once stood elephants beautifully carved in stone. The Sikhara of this shrine built of brick covered with stucco has almost disappeared. The carvings on the exterior of the building are plain, consisting of 2 bands of leaf patterns. The floor of the temple rises 2’9” above the surrounding terrace, and the plan consists of a mandapa 23’ X 24’, an antechamber, 9’6” X 7’6” and a square shrine 9’6” X 7’6” and a square shrine 9’6” each way.
Around the hall runs a platform on which eight small cells for images built. Several of these cells have fallen down, but two of them are still intact and contain images of Vishnu and Ganapati carved in black basalt. Inside the mandapa, there is also lying a Nandi dislodged from its original place. The door of the shrine beautifully carved and the frieze represents Siva dancing the tandava.
You Must Read: ‘Ramappa Temple -A UNESCO World Heritage Site(Pt.I)
This shrine situated to the South of the main shrine consists of a large square hall measuring 34 feet each way, with cells towards the East and West standing without a roof over them. The hall has four majestic pillars in the middle enclosing a square space (14’ X 14’) apparently to accommodate the deity during special ceremonies. The celling has some fine carvings and the central compartment represents a full-blown lotus. The plinth of the temple is very high and on the terrace near the steps stands a pair of stone elephants giving the building an air of dignity.
Towards the South-West of the main shrine is a small room which now called Dharamsala and which might used for keeping prepared food, the actual cooking done usually in the open space nearby.
A low but massive wall 9 feet in height and 6½ feet in thickness running 272 feet North to South encloses these temples and noteworthy for its special construction. It faced on both sides with huge blocks of well-chiseled masonry some of which measure 21’ x 3½’ x 1½’ and fit each other so closely that no mortar used. The top of the wall covered by similar slabs, which are about 9 feet broad and project a foot on each side of the wall, thus making a sort of coping for protection against rainwater. (The core of the wall was original of mere earth and where it sashed away by percolation of rainwater the facing stones have lost their support from behind and tumbled down.)
The enclosure has two low entrances, one towards the East and the other to the West. Both originally adorned with fine sculptures consisting of dvarapalas and figures of gods, which still intact on the eastern gate.
Besides, the main temple and its subsidiary shrines described above the village of Palampet has four more temples exquisitely carved and situated within a distance of about half a mile from the main temple.
The nearest is a temple of Siva, situated about 600 feet to the South -West of the great temple and consists of a mandapa (20’ square) and shrines with ante-chambers (6’9” square) towards the North, South, and West. In architectural style and decorative features, this temple resembles the main temple. The hall enclosed by a screen of fret-work done in stone and the carvings, both inside the building and outside, are exquisite. The jambs, lintels, and friezes of three shrine doorways richly adorned with sculptures of no mean order, and the side screens are wonderfully delicate.
The outer surface of the building surrounded by bands of figures in high relief which on the Eastern face beginning from the base, represent (1) figures of goddesses arranged in niches (2) floral designs (3) Puranic scenes (4) leaf patterns (5) screens of Jali-work. On the Western face (1) floral designs (2) images of goddesses sitting in niches surmounted with Sikharas of various forms (3) leaf patterns (4) vyalis (5) geese (6) jail screens. The Chajjas of the building is bold and richly carved. The entrance in the East and distinguished by a small but beautiful porch. The Nandi h moved away from its original position and even the lingas which once adorned the three shrines now missing.
This temple just a heap of ruins situated at a distance of about ½ kilometer to the North-West of the great Temple in a thick grove of palmyra and other trees. The plan of the building consists of an open pillared hall (23’6” x 24’6”), an ante-chamber (9’3” square), and a square shrine (9’3” each way). There also a detached open mandapa (10’9” square) in front of the temple which probably served as the Nandi-mandapa. The carvings in this temple comparatively plain, but quite artistic and appropriate to the architectural dignity of the building never completed.
This and the next temple respectively situated at the Western and the Eastern end of the gigantic bund which encloses the beautiful Ramappa lake towards the North. The situation of Temple No. 3 is extremely picturesque and the distance from the main temple about 1 kilometer to the South-West.
The temple has two detached shrines in front of it which beautifully carved and adorned with figures of dvarapalas. They have ante-chambers in front of them, which also decorated with fine cornices and screens. The plan of the main temple , as usual, a portico in front towards the East-leading to the main hall in the center – 25’ 6” square and three shrines with ante-chambers towards the North, South, and West.
The carvings in this temple exceptionally fine and the scene represented on a panel at the door of the Western shrine, in which a sylvan deity standing in front sown removing a thorn from the sole of her foot, extremely interesting – the figure of the deity being full of life and expression. The walls have various niches which images of Vishnu, Lakshmi, Ganesa, and Mahisasuramardani.
This temple repaired by the Public Works Department and consequently lost most of its artistic and archaeological value. It stands on a high stylobate (8 feet) which adorned with carvings of floral designs and animal figures. The plan of the temple consists of a hall (25’9” x 23’9”) with projecting porches towards the North, South, and West and a shrine (10’3” x 9’8”) at the eastern end.
The pedestals of the four central pillars of the hall elegantly carved and represent figures of musicians and dancing girls in different poses. the sculptures quite spirited and their general treatment is both graceful and pleasing. The panels at the jambs of the doorway of the shrine also decorated with sikharas figures. The frieze over the lintel adorned with carvings of miniature sikharas, and the side screens of Jali work. The ceiling divided into several compartments which bear floral patterns.
A few points (regarding Ramappa Temple Nominated as UNESCO World Heritage) of general interest:
- Stone Used:
The stone used in the temples of Palampet is sandstone of pinkish hue, a little lighter in color than the red sandstone of Agra but of the same texture and grain. It has lent itself well to fine carving and has stood the test of time for the last seven centuries with little sign of deterioration. In the decorations of the great Temple, however, black basalt (horn-blende) which a much harder stone lavishly used. The way in which it has been wrought and polished is a standing marvel to the people, who find no difficulty in accepting the legends which tell of the miraculous creation of these temples.
The exceptional skill and refined taste of the sculptures and architecture of the Deccan largely due to their continued practice and long tradition in stone carving stretching back for many centuries as proved by the existence of the early rock-hewn shrines all over the Deccan.
The pillars in the temples of Palampet, in particular, need special mention since they far surpass the pillars of the temples elsewhere in the Deccan for the consummate skill shown in polishing them so as to make the surface shine like a mirror. The close-grained nature of the stone lent itself to this treatment and even in historic times, early man utilized it for a special purpose for making his heavy hand-axes, chisels, and other chipped or polished tools.
Opinion differs as to whether or not these pillars actually turned on a lathe in order to secure this polished surface. The use of the lathe must certainly have been well-known to the architects and craftsmen of these times. But even when the use of the lathe was not possible as in the Rock-cut and monolithic shrines the achievement of this mirror-like polish is a testimony to the perfection of this by-gone art.
Defects of Ramappa Temple, UNESCO nominated Site
A sad defect of these temples that they not provided with adequate foundations and as they built of large blocks of masonry sinkage has occurred in the majority of cases, o that cracked walls, broken lintels, and out-of-plum balls are features which frequently obtrude themselves one’s notice. Keen critics might notice one or two other defects but none can deny the magnificence of this temple, nor can anyone ignore the rich imagination, patience, industry, and skillful workmanship of the builders of these temples.
The structural temples in Telingana, the Eastern part of the Deccan, built between the tenth and the fourteenth Centuries A.D. form a magnificent group, but the great Temple of Palampet is verily the most significant for its breadth of vision and the loftiness of spirit on the one hand and for its superior craftsmanship on the other.
You Must Read: ‘Ramappa Temple -A UNESCO World Heritage Site(Pt.I)
Sculpture of Ramappa Temple, UNESCO nominated Site
The sculpture of Palampet represents the cream of Art under the Kakatiyas. The most notable examples are the figure brackets which consist of 12 female figures and a few vyalis or mythical tigers of conventional for supported on pedestals of elephant heads carved with considerable skill. The female figures of almost life-size worked in highly polished black basalt, and cut with great precision and accuracy.
The figures with long fingernails are exceptionally good, the poses of the body in most cases graceful, and the contour and the expression remarkably beautiful.
The suggestion of movement and pulsating life conveyed by the gestures of figures and the poses of the bodies appeals to the artistic sense, more particularly because the sculptor has managed to give a wonderful impression of youth and rhythm the outline of the body seems to move in curves indicating in each pose of dancing step an emotional grace and mood of exaltation rarely seen in Indian sculpture of earlier periods.
The idea of the exuberance of youth with unfettered emotion further illustrated by another sculpture in this temple which represents the nude study of a woman, a nagini, intoxicated with the fervor of youth. Impetuous Joie de Vivre (keen or buoyant enjoyment of life) conveyed in the treatment of the legs, which gracefully extended at full length, or in that of the arms which lifted lightly to bring into prominence the charm of youthful bosom.
There is a delightful swaying in the line of the body between the chest and the hips which enhances the emotional effect of the sculpture. The artist to give further mythical significance to the sculpture has placed a serpent in her hands and one or more round her neck, arms, and body as if she had clasped them with ecstatic frenzy in her mood of exultant joy. The serpent held by her delicate fingers has a large hood to be seen to the left of her right hand. The floral designs and figures of animals also are exceedingly fine as seen from the heavy slabs of the Chajjas richly carved from inside with floral designs once painted in diverse colors – the old coloring being still visible here and there on the cornice.
Mention also be made here of the magnificent display of sculptures inside the temple depicting scenes from Ramayana, Bhagavata, and other ancient Hindu works. The idyllic scene of Krishna and Gopika-vastrapaharana represented in several prominent places such as the jambs of the door of the ante-chamber. So is the form Krishna as Muralidhara. The figurines not calm and unperturbed as Buddhist figures but bear an expression of revelry and utter joy. Even Ganapati with his usual round paunch represented dancing in an architrave of the central apartment of the hall.
In conclusion, it noted that the Brahminic sculpture of the tenth to the thirteenth centuries seems to belong to a period far from the times of acute religious controversy and acrimonious rivalry of faiths that sometimes gave rise to unbridled passions and led the artist to dwell on violent and aggressive themes. Nor does his impulse seem to be oppressed and fettered by any traditional devices and rules which might make his creation feeble or lifeless. His love of the beautiful further developed, but beauty to him not restricted within the narrow limits, of symmetry of limbs or elegance of features. He notices it in the vigor and movement of the fullness of life, and his heart expands and his imagination stirred by visions and experiences emanating from a wider outlook upon art and a broader conception of beauty.
You Must Read: ‘Ramappa Temple -A UNESCO World Heritage Site(Pt.I)
Square Pillar of highly polished black basalt (of Ramappa Temple, UNESCO nominated)
Translation of Inscriptions written in Sanskrit carved on a Square Pillar of highly polished black basalt.
Line I. Obeisance to the blessed Rudresvara!
(Verse 1). May that Ganadhisa protect you on whose cheek, besprinkled with rutting ichor, the line of bees appears distinctly like a streak of musk.
(Verse 2). May the Goddess Sarada, giver of boons, whose lotus feet adored by the troops of gods and demons, ever grant you joy.
(Verse 3). May that god Siva, whose diadem is the moon, at whose pair of lotus-feet the mass of quivering rays from the sapphires in the crest of obeisant lords of the gods assumes the semblance of gadding bees, be for your prosperity.
(Verse 4). May that lord Sripati, in sport (assuming the form of) a Boar(The boar was the crest of the Kakatiyas.) be for your happiness – he whose body, covered with all the waters of the ocean like a drop of sweat and holding the earth fixed on the tip of his tusk, appears like the sky (studded) with many stars and having a cloud standing at the point of the crescent moon.
(Verse 5). Victorious the puissant blessed king Ganapati, in whose spirit dwells Isa without abandoning his achala-sthilil (swelling on the mountains, or immovable condition).
(Verse 6). When he takes the field, the thick dust arising from the ground split open by the hoofs of his squadrons of horses, and advances in front of him because of the wind moving forward in a favorable direction appears like the Earth herself, who constantly protected by that master of all policy, is furiously marching in the van in order to slay the monarchs, his foes, for his pleasure.
(Verse 7). The people going about in the courts of his palaces have their limbs well cooled even in the season of intense heat being bathed with drops of water streaming forth from the tips of the trunks of elephants ridden by kings who come to do service to him.
(Verse 8). The sacrificial Fire, delighted at obtaining the most abundant oblation in the many sacrifices undertaken by the congregations of great Brahmans pleased by the magnificence displayed in the endless largesse bestowed by him, but also suffering much toil in carrying to the company of the gods the series of oblations, assuredly feels always joy mingled with pain.
(Verse 9). I will tell of the famous and most noble lineage of the hero devoted to him, the best General Rudra, the lord of Recherla.
(Verse 10). There was a general named the blest Brahma, possessing many virtues, who protected the earth by the rampart of his majesty.
(Verse 11). As soon as his musical instruments had pealed forth he swiftly flung open the doors of the city of Kanchi like a curtain and promptly brought about thee the marriage of the Kakati monarch with the Fortune of heroes.
(Verse 12). In his family was born the General named Kataya, conqueror of foes, enjoying brilliant fortunes, dear to good men.
(Verse 13). The passionate bee of his spirit day after day freely and plainly haunted with joy Srikantha’s blessed lotus feet, which are readily radiant from the lines of large jewels, massive and bright, that are strung on the tips of the crests of obeisant Brahman and all the other immortals.
(Verse 14). His son was the General named Kama, brilliant in conduct, whose mind was pure in the worship of the lotus-feet of the Lord of the World.
(Verse 15). When he, the commander of the blest king Prola’s army, renowned for valor, and great strength, smote in battle king Manthanya-Gunda, the other hostile monarchs instantly fled away in every direction like the other lesser elephants when the chief elephant of the herd has been laid low by a lion.
(Verse 16). Of him was born a son, the General Kataya, truthful of speech and adorned with unswerving velour praised by heroes.
(Verse 17). He was an ocean (producing) a multitude of the gems of virtues, a unique kinsman to the good, a celestial tree in largesse, a destroyer of hostile factions, possessing renowned flawless intelligence, attaining the accomplishment of his desires, having the lauded form of Pasupati (Siva), enjoying famous and endless glory.
(Verse 18). From him was born the blest General Rudra, conqueror of foes, as from the great mountain Rohana (Mount Rohuna in Sri Lanka) is produced the brilliant beryl.
(Verse 19). The Lotus-dweller (Brahma) created firmness in Meru, which is without tenderness, beauty in the Mind born (Kama), who is a rebel against Isa, profundity in the ocean, which is the source of visha (poison or water), mobility in the thunderbolt, which is gross, and bounty in the celestial tree, which is beyond the reach of the needy, being dissatisfied with these he created him Kamambika’s son, who is a mine of virtues untouched by faults.
(Verse 20). The heat of the majesty of this (Rudra), who is a sun (scattering) the darkness consisting of valiant hostile kings, wonderful to relate! Certainly, causes the multitude of white lotuses which are the eyes of celestial damsels whose hearts are possessed with joy at obtaining their lovers.
(Verse 21). When the blest King Rudra, who was a thunderbolt upon the mountains that are hostile monarchs, and who drew to himself the hand of the bright earth destined to be enjoyed by the Kakati Lord, had gone to heaven, the hostile princes whom he, renowned for valor, had conquered on the fields of battle sprang up together hastily in panic. (The first Rudra mentioned in this verse is apparently the Kakatiya King Rudradeva; the second is the general Recherla Rudra.)
(Verse 22). He forsooth cut off the head of a haughty feudatory, and set it up for public view, stuck upon the top of the lofty flag-staff, in his lord’s city, that field for the harvest of universal prosperity, as a scare-crow, to frighten the flocks of the wild beasts that are hostile kings.
(Verse 23). Threatened by the pennons on the top of his army’s flagstaff, King Nagati speedily took to flight.
(Verse 24). Recherla Rudra, a hero loyal to his lord, right resolute of mind when the fortune of Kakati Monarch through error had set her foot among many sharp thorns and for the moment the triple lore was disturbed, himself by the might of his arm forcibly crushed and removed those thorns, and very firmly established that fortune in security.
(Verse 25). This verse owing to the damaged state of the stone is only partially intelligible; it refers to Rudra’s military exploits.
(Verse 26). His sharp arrows on the battlefields, though piercing …monarchs, to whose bodies no blood clings, shine with averted faces, owing forsooth to their intense shame because they think: “We have in vain inflicted wounds upon these (Kings), who at the mere sight of us have instantly gone to heaven.”
(Verse 27). The crowd of parasols belonging to enemy Kings, having their poles split by him with his arrows, laid low, and covered with dust, appears on the field of battle like their halo of glory deprived of luster.
(Verse 28). Rival Kings, fleeing from dread of him, in their desire to become equal to him walk forsooth manifestly at the same moment, owing to his might of arm, over vast katakas (slopes or camps) of bhumibhrits (mountains or monarchs, which are thickly set with broad salas (sal trees, or ramparts), inaccessible to others, thronged with bands of most noisy nagas (barbarians or elephants), and which have a flock of vajis (birds or horses) grazing over them.
(Verse 29). His arrows, golden trailed and keen of point, obedient to his unswerving valor, instantly in battle pierce the crowd of enemy monarchs and enter the earth, in order forsooth to say to the Serpent who supports the world: “By overcoming wicked men this day we have relieved the burden of the earth.”
(Verse 30). In battle, the dust that arises from the ground split open by the hoofs of his squadrons of harnessed coursers, and which spreads abroad over the sky, being cut off at its root by the water consisting of the abundant rutting ichor of lordly elephants, appears like a curtain spread out for the marriage of the damsels of heaven with the valiant hostile Kings slain by the blows of the sword swung in his pole-like arm.
(Verse 31). Shattering great hosts of heroic foes, the sword-blade of Rudra who is burning with majesty plainly assumes the hue of smoke, and the masses of gore arising from enemies’ limbs wear the aspect of fire; and the blood-stained pearls falling from the temples of foemen’s elephants upon the earth have the semblance of coals.
(Verse 32). A string of pearls, though is placed upon a randhra (orifice of the body, or weakness), Sakra’s elephant, though white of body, is foul with the oozing of rutting ichor, the swan, though white, plainly delights in jada (water or stupidity), the moon, though stainless of luster is a doshakara (maker of night, or mine of faults), thus these things are not equal to his fame, which is faultlessly bright in character.
(Verse 33). And this blest General Rudra, a man of skill, made a consecration of the God Rudresvarra in the city of Orugallu.
(Verse 34). And the sage son of Kamamba then granted to this Siva, for the accomplishment of enjoyment of theatrical performances and bodily pleasure the village named Nekkonda.
(Verse 35). By him was built a city brilliantly shooting up lofty pinnacles in which are delightful palaces, constant fortunes of every kind.
(Verse 36). It is forever a blessed Dvaravati, an Ayodhya together with Girivraja and a blessed visala, and a Mathura manifestly and Bhogavati.
(Verse 37). Here in one part (is heard) the sound of the mighty roaring of towering lordly elephants, in another part the multitudinous clattering of the hard hoofs of squadrons of horses, in another the sportive clamor of warlike exercises carried on by troops of warriors, in another the mutual altercation of numerous libertines in gambling companies.
(Verse 38). In another part, the sound of damsels songs mingled with the tones of the lute and pipe, in another the declamation of verses accompanied by the sweetness of novel musical performances, in another r the recitation of the Four Vedas clearly rendered by congregations of Brahmans, in another the brilliance of goodly discourses by ardent students of the sciences.
(Verse 39). As if on purpose to behold the splendor of this (city), the betel creepers quickly climb up to the top of the shoulders of the areca-palms in the parks all around.
(Verse 40). He constructed a pond, which stands like an ocean that has come thither from fear of the Submarine Fire, and looks like a mirror for that city.
(Verse 41). In this pond the banks, covered with rows of waves and underlined with foam all along the water edge, suggest a resemblance to the ocean, being like in aspect to rows of shells of quivering luster.
(Verse 42). All the clouds certainly take up its water, not that of the ocean, for they everywhere carry sweet water.
(Verse 43). All the stainless stars in the nights, entering its exceedingly pure water in the form of reflected images of themselves ever freely perform in soothe the austerity of water-dwelling in order to be united with the full moon.
(Verse 44). At this pond, which is loved by troops of birds delighted at the swinging play of the lines of gently rising, abundant, sportive, quivering waves, the chataka-birds all around in the hot season drink the pure water drops dashed up by the fishes’ tails as they fall far away from imagining them to be rain.
(Verse 45). In this exceedingly brilliant city this (Rudra), who was a terror to rival warriors, performed a consecration of Rudresvara which was extolled by great Brahmans.
(Verse 46). On the top of the temple of this (god) shines distinctly a golden cupola, illumining the space of the sky, always having the brilliance of a vast sun’s orbit standing on the lofty peak of the Eastern Mountain.
(Verse 47). In the Saka year numbered as “earth, moon, worlds, arrows” (1135), (the cyclic year) Srimukha, in (the month) Madhu, on the eighth day of the bright fortnight, a Sunday, and under the nakshatra Pushya, he, great of mind.
(Verse 48). Granted respectfully to Rudresvara together with Gaurisa Upparlapalli and Borlapalli for their enjoyment.
(Verse 49). Whether born of my lineage or born of the lineage of other kings, may monarchs on earth with minds free from sin maintain this pious foundation in its entirety to them I clasp my hands upon my head.
(Verse 50). Even though it be made by an enemy, a religious foundation should be maintained with care for an enemy will be merely an enemy, but a religious foundation can be an enemy to no man.
(Verse 51). He who should take away land, whether granted by himself or granted by others, is born for sixty thousand years as a worm in dung.
(Verse 52). Therefore, O kings, you must carefully maintain with affection the religious foundation made by us, in order that your welfare may increase.
(Verse 53-54). The blest General Rudra, the sage, rejoicing granted to the god who is well established in the ever-fortunate goodly town of Atukuru, to Katesvara and to Kamesvara and Rudresvara, the excellent village of Nradkude for their enjoyment.
You May Also Read: