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Old 11-03-2005, 07:00 AM   #1
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Old 11-06-2005, 07:00 AM   #2
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Old 04-17-2006, 07:00 AM   #3
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Default Medieval Chola Empire and it's relations with Kerala
Author - Virarajendra


Medieval Chola Empire and it's relations with Kerala


(1) Introduction

During the period of the nineth and the tenth centuries, the Chera country was ruled by three principal royal dynasties known as the Ayes, Venads, and Kulasekaras from three distinctive regions of Kerala (the Sanskritised version of Chera), and the kings of these three dynasties and the other Chieftains ruling smaller regions of the rest of Kerala, all were generally referred to as the Cheras or Keralas by the people of Chola & Pandiya countries of this period.

The Aye dynasty were ruling a region covering from the present Nagerkoil of Tamil Nadu the southern end of the Aye kingdom, upwards into Kerala to the present Anjuthengu in the north of the present Thiruvananthapuram, and was known as Aye Nadu. Their capital was at Vilignam a seaport city south of Thiruvananthapuram. The Aye Nadu also included the Kanthalursalai - a military and Vedic studies acadamy and an armoury centre of the Aye kings, and was located deep south beyond the Vilignam along the sea coast closer to Nagerkoil the southern end of the Aye kingdom.

The Venad dynasty were ruling a region beyond Anjuthengu covering a region upto Kottayam, known formally as Venadu and also as Kollam Desam with their capital at Kollam (proper), also a seaport city on the west Kerala.

The Kulasekara dynasty were ruling a region of Kerala beyond Kottayam further north upto and around the present region of Kolikkodu (Calicut) and known as Kudamalai Nadu, with their capital at Mahodayapuram (Kodungolur) a seaport city also known as Makothai, and a second interior capital known as Uthakai in the Kongu country of that period (the present Udhagamandalam region of the Tamil Nadu, bordering the Kerala also known as Udhagai), which was under their rule during this period.

Unlike the Aye and the Venad dynasty, the vast territory ruled by Kulasekara dynasty covered many small regions called “Nadus” under different names, which were ruled by the local Chieftans who accepted the authority of the Kulasekara dynasty, and ruled their respective regions as subordinates to them.


(2) The Chera kings from A.D.801 up to the advent of Vijayalaya Chola

Towards the beginning of the nineth century{i.e. A.D.801} a powerful Chera king known as Kulasekaran {A.D.801-820} was ruling in Kudamalainadu of the Kerala country, covering the length of the Kolli - Malai (hills) regions in central and north Kerala, from his capital at Mahodayapuram.

He has claimed for himself the titles “Kolik-kon”, “Kudal-nayagan”, “Kongar Kon” confirming his authority over Koliyur (the Uraiyur of the Chola country), and Kudal (the Madurai of the Pandiya country), and also over the Kongu country. It was probably during this period the Uthahai became the second capital of the Kulasekara dynasty with a member of the Kulasekara family appointed to rule over this region.

Kulasekaran was an ardent devotee of - Sri Rama (regarded as an incarnation of God Vishnu), and hence the Vaishnavites of this period referred to him as "Kulasekara Perumal" in reverence.

He made pilgrimages to Thiruvarangam (Sri Rangam) in Cholanadu, and Thiruvenkatam (Thiruppathi) in Thondainadu - among others, and has composed a set of hyms - in Tamil in praise of God Vishnu named as "Perumal Thirumoli", and in Sanskrit named as "Muhunda Mala". He abdicated the Chera throne to lead a holy life and was venerated as one of the twelve great Tamil Vaishnava Saints, known as the Kulasekara Alvar.

The Chera king Kulasekaran had a son by the name Rajasekaran. With the abdication of Kulasekara from Chera throne, his son Rajasekaran {A.D.820-844} became the king of the Chera country. He was also known by the name Cheraman Perumal and unlike his father was an ardent devotee of God Siva.

Rajasekaran while ruling the Chera country from Mahodayapuram spent most of his time in religious activities and in meditation at the Siva Temple in Thiruvanjaikkalam at Kodungolur (Mahodayapuram) in the Kerala country. It was during this time one of the great Tamil Saiva Saint of Tamil Nadu - the Sundaramurthi Nayanar made a pilgrimage to the Thiruvarur Temple in the Chola country. The Chera king Rajasekaran with utmost desire to meet this great Tamil Saiva Saint, also went to Thiruvarur at this same time.

Here with the blessings of God Siva of Thiruvarur the Chera king composed hyms in Tamil in his praise known as "Mummanikkovai". From there he went along with the Tamil Saint Sundarmurthi Nayanar to the Siva shrine at Vedaranniyam in the Chola country and other Siva Shrines all over the Pandiya country. He composed further hyms in Tamil in praise of God Siva known as "Ponvanna Anthathi" and "Thirukkalyana Gnana Ulla" and became to be known and venerated as Cheraman Perumal Nayanar. All the above hyms composed by him have been included in the eleventh “Thirumurai” (Thirumurais are a collection of the sacred hyms in Tamil, sung on God Siva by various Tamil Saiva Saints of TamilNadu and few from the Kerala State).

Finally at the eager request of the Cheraman Perumal Nayanar the Tamil Saiva Saint Sundaramurthi Nayanar opted to visit the palace of this Chera king at his capital city of Mahodaiyapuram in the Chera country travelling through Kongunadu the present Udagamandalam (Udagai) region of Tamil Nadu.

While being here in A.D.844 the Saint Sundaramurthi Nayanar died. Unable to bear the grief of the death of this great Saint, the Cheraman Perumal Nayanar too met his death soon thereafter in the same year.

It was during the period of the Chera king Kulasekaran and partly during the period of the Chera king Rajasekaran, the great Saiva Saint of Chera (Kerala) country namely the Sankaracharya who founded the Advaita doctrine lived in Kerala.

It also appears the Tamil Saiva Saint known as Venattu Adigal from Venad in the Chera country, though not classified under the sixty-three Tamil Saiva Saints of Tamil Nadu, the hyms composed by him named "Thiruvisaippa" on God Siva of Chidambaram in Chola country, has been included in the nineth "Thirumurai". It appears the Venattu Adigal lived during a period after the Tamil Saiva Saint the Sundaramurthi Nayanar.

The Chera king Rajasekara alias Cheraman Perumal Nayanar was followed by his son the king Sthanu Ravi alias Ravi Varma Kulasekaran (alias Ko-Kandan) {A.D.844 - 885} on the Chera throne at Mahodayapuram. Sthanu Ravi too was a Saivite like his father. He had a daughter by the name Kilanadigal who married king Vijayaragadeva from another Chera royal family ruling a part of Kerala.

It was only towards this time - the mid nineth century A.D, the Chola dynasty emerged more into limelight, after a long spell in partial or total obscurity in the political scene of Tamil Nadu for nearly six centuries.


(3) Period of Vijayalaya Chola {A.D.848-881}

The first among this line of medieval Cholas who came into prominance was the king Vijayalaya Chola {A.D.848-881}, who ruled the Chola country from Thanjavur.

It appears that the Chera kings of this period, had very friendly relations with the Chola country. The Sthanu Ravi and his daughter both being of Saivite faith, and with the prevailing good relations that existed with the Chola country, had made their endowments to the Siva temples in the Chola country

In the year A.D.849 during the rule of the Chera king Sthanu Ravi also known as Ravi Varma Tribuvanachakravarti Kulasekaradeva, the villagers of the Chalukkipparu has gifted a village named Satanur in the Thondainadu to the temple of Siva named as Tiruayanisuramudaiya Nayanar.

The Chera Queen Kilanadigal provided gold for a lamp at the temple of Thiruvannamalai in Thondaimanadu (adjacent to Chola country) in the year A.D..851. The Chera king (Ko)Kandan Ravi alias Sthanu Ravi also gifted land for lighting lamp at the temple at Kuttalam in Pandiyanadu in the year in the year A.D.870.


(4) Period of Athiththa Chola {A.D.871-907}

In the year A.D.881 with the demise of Vijayalaya Chola his son Athiththa Chola {A.D.871-907} succeeded on the Chola throne, who was a co-regent of Vijayalaya from A.D.871. During the period of his rule the Athiththa Chola waged war on Kongunadu assisted by the Chera king Sthanu Ravi, and captured it from the Pandiyan king.

A general named Vikki Annan the chieftan of Kodumbalur was greatly instrumental in winning this war by the Cholas, and was rewarded jointly by the Chola & Chera kings with a crown, palace, elephants, royal palanquin, drum and the given the title "Sembiyan Thamil Verl". Towards the middle of Athiththa Chola’s rule the Chera king Sthani Ravi died and was followed by Rama Varma Kulasekara {A.D.885-917} on the Chera throne.

During this time the Pandiya king Paranthaha Vira Narayanan (A.D.860-905) married a Chera Princes named Vanavan Mathevi, and to them was born the Pandiyan king named Rajasimhan-2 (A.D.900-920).


(5) Period of Paranthaha Chola{A.D.907-953}

Athitha Chola was succeeded by his son Paranthaha Chola (A.D.907-953) on the Chola throne. He married Udaiya Pirattiyar Kokkilan Adigal daughter of the Chera king Rama Varma of Kulasekara dynasty. He also married the daughter of another Chera king Paluvettaraiyar Kandan Amuthan named Arumoli Nangai ruling from west Paluvur of the present Tirutchirappalli in Tamil Nadu bordering Kerala. He had a further queen by the name Villavan Mathevi probably the daughter of the Venad King of the Chera country, who refer themselves as “Villavar’.

Paranthaha Chola-1 had an elder son by Kokilanadigal named Rajathithya, a second son by the name Gandarathitha and a younger son by Arulmoli Nangai named Arinjayan.

A native of Nandikkaraiputtur in Kerala Country named Velankumaran was the general of the Chola Prince Rajathithya. However the Prince Rajaditya died very young in a war in Thondainadu.

Paranthaha Chola with the intention of annexing the Pandiyanadu waged war with Pandiya king Rajasimhan-2. In this war the Chera king Rama Varma Kulasekara assisted Paranthaha.

Rajasimhan-2 was defeated and went to Sri Lanka, and with the assistance of the king of Sri Lanka fought back with Paranthaha and his allies namely the Pallavas and the Chera king Ranma Varma at Thirupurambiyam. But he was defeated and again took refuge in Sri Lanka.

As Rajasimhan didnot receive further assistance from the Sri Lankan king for a second expedition in regaining his throne, returned to the Chera Country of his mother.

The matrimonial alliance of Paranthaha Chola with the foremost among the royal families of Kerala country namely the Kulasekara dynasty, paved way for the friendly relations that existed beteween these two countries to increase many folds. During this period there seems to have been an inflow of people from Chera country to the Chola country, some of whom even worked for the Chola king.

The Kokkilan Adigal daughter of this Chera king (and the queen of Paranthaha Chola) the has provided gold for expenses for lighting lamps at the temple at Lalgudi in Cholanadu in the year A.D.923.

In this same year of A.D.923 Alala-Arisilar Kumaran a native of the Kodungolur (Mahodayapuram) of (Kuda)Malainadu of Kerala country gifted gold for lampstand at the temple Thirunallakuntram in Kudumiyanmalai in Cholanadu.

In this same year another native also from Kodungolur of Malainadu gifted gold for a lamp at the temple at Kudumiyanmalai in Cholanadu.

In the year A.D.926 queen Kokkilan Adigal has provided gold for lighting lamps at the temple at Thiruvidaimaruthur in Thanjavur.

She also ordered the construction of a stone temple named Thiruththondiswarem at Thirunavalur in Chola country. During her time a tank has been constructed near Tribuwani (near present Pondicherry) and named after her as Kokkilanadi-pereri in Chola country.

There has been a native of the Chera country known as Kerala Kurumban given a high office in the Chola kingdom by Paranthaha Chola with the title Parakesari Mevenda Velar whose wife made gifts to the the temple as Tiruvottriyur in the year A.D.927.

In the year A.D 936 Ravi Nili the daughter of Chera king Vijayaragadevar (who was inturn the Son-in Law of earlier Chera king Sthanu Ravi) provided thirty kalanju (a measure) of gold for lighting lamp to the Mahadeva at the temple of Thiruvottriyur in Thondainadu which was under Chola rule.

Another native of Kodungolur (Mahodayapuram) of Malainadu (Kudamalainadu) in Kerala country in the year A.D.936 donated a lamp to the temple at Thiruchanur in Thondaimandalam.

In the year A.D.943 the Kerala general Velankumaran of Prince Rajathithya (eldest son of Paranthaha Chola) built a stone temple to Arruttali Mahadeva at Mudiyur on the Pennar river in Thondaimandalam.

Sheep for maintaing lamp was given to the temple at Thirumalpuram in Thondainadu by Puvan Maran a native of Nediyatali of Kodungolur (Mahodayapuram) in the Kerala country in the year A.D.948.

Another native of Kodungolur in Malainadu donated lands to the presiding God Perumal at the Thiruvenkadu temple in Thanjavur A.D.952

Towards this time with the demise of the Chera king Rama Varma, the king Kothai Ravi Varma {A.D.917-947} succeeded on the Chera throne at Mahodayapuram the capital of Kudamalainadu in Kerala country.

After thirty years of rule Kothai Ravi Varma was followed by Indukotha Varma {A.D. 944-962} on the Chera throne at Mahodayapuram.


(6) Period of Gandarathitha Chola {A.D.950-957}

After Paranthaha-1, his second son of Gandarathithya Chola (A.D..950-957) ascended the Chola throne after being a co-regent with Paranthaha Chola from A.D.953. Though he was the Chola king his thoughts were always around God Siva leading a more religious life, and with his blessings have composed religious hyms in Tamil known as “Thiruvisaippa” which have been included in the nineth "Thirumurai".


(7) Period of Arinjaya Chola {A.D.956-957}

He was followed by Arinjaya Chola (A.D.956-957) who succeeded to the Chola throne. He too married the daughter of the Chera king the Indukothai Ravi Varma named Athithan Kothai Piratiyar.


(8) Period of Sundera Chola {A.D. 957-970}

With the premature death of Arinjaya Chola his son the Sundera Chola ascended the Chola throne. He married the daughter of the king Malaiyaman of Thirukkovalur in Thondainadu named Udaya Piratiyar Thambiranadigal Vanavanmatheviyar alias Thiribhuvanamatheviyar, and also the Paranthahan Theviammanar daughter of a Chera king , and to the former was born the great Chola king RajaRaja-1.

During this period the Chera king Indukotha Varma was succeeded by Bhaskara Ravi Varma - 1 {A.D.962-1019} at Mahodayapuram. Years later Baskara Ravi Varma - 2 {A.D.979-1014} appears to have assisted Bhakara Ravi Varma – 1 in ruling his vast Chera empire which stretched from the present Calicut to Tiruvanandapuram region encompassing the Kudamalainadu, Kongunadu and Venad, as his co-regent probably from Uthahai in the Kongu region which was under the Chera rule during this period.


(9) Period of Uthama Chola {A.D. 970-985}

After the demise of Sundera Chola his son Rajaraja – 1 who was the legitimate heir to the Chola throne, whole heartedly gave way to Uthama Chola (A.D.970-985) the son of Gandarathitha Chola being his paternal uncle, to rule for some period.

Uthama Chola had among others, a queen named Panchavanmatheviyar who was the daughter of the Chera king Paluvettaraiyar also known as Kandan Sundera Cholan.


(10) Period of Rajaraja Chola –1 {A.D.985-1014}

Uthama Chola died in the year A.D.985, and was succeeded by the heir apparent Rajaraja Chola-1{A.D.985-1014} on the Chola throne.

Rajaraja Chola - 1 too married a daughter of the Malaiyaman king of Tirukkovalur in Thondainadu named Vanavanmathevi, who was also known as Thiribhuvanamadevi. One of his other queens was Villavanmathevi the daughter of the king of Venadu of Chera country. He also had a queen known as Panchavanmathevi who was the daughter of Paluvettaraiyar Kandan Maravan the Chera king of Paluvur on the west of Thirutchirappalli bordering Kerala state. It was to Vanavanmadevi the greatest emperor of the Chola dynasty namely the Rajendra Chola – 1 was born.

With the accession of Rajaraja Chola -1 on the Chola throne and with his "imperialistic ambitions" over South India, found that it was necessary initially to overcome the powerful Cheras.

The peaceful and friendly relations the Cholas had with the Cheras from the earliest times through the period of Vijayalaya Chola {A.D.848-881} upto the time of Uththama Chola{A.D. 970-985} thus became strained, and led to nearly a hundred years of war among them to retain their supremacy.

During the rule of the earlier Chola kings and Rajaraja Chola -1, the Aye dynasty of the Chera country over period of time had built up a military and vedic acadamy and an arsenal centre at Kandalur Salai, which was located south of Thiruvananthapuram and produced many great trained warriors.

Rajaraja Chola -1 realised the destruction of the supply lines to these acadamy of trained warriors and the arsenal centre of the Aye kings of Chera (Kerala) country, and to their Pandiyan ally namely Amarabujangan was an absolute necessity initialy, in order to win the southern region of the Chera and Pandiya countries ruled by these two powerful kings.

Rajaraja-1 waged war on the Kandalursalai for th first time in A.D.988, and it appears he only partly destroyed this military acadamy. But it appears the Cheras reinstated their positions again in Kandalursalai and continued with the functions of their military acadamy and arsenal centre.

This made Rajaraja Chola-1 to wage war again on Kandalursali in the year A.D.995, and effectively destroyed the Kandalursalai military acadamy and arsenal centre, and defeated the ruling Aye king of Kerala country and captured his capital the seaport city of Vilignam.

The Aye Kingdom comprised of Nanchilnadu & Valluvanadu. The Rajaraja Chola after his capture of the Aye kingdom, re-named a village called Muttam in Valluvanadu as Mummudicholanallur, a subdivision of Aye Nadu which too was renamed as the Rajarja Tennadu.

He donated grants to a temple known as Tirunandikkarai in this village of Muttam in the year A.D.1003, and ordered that in the month of Iyppasi (October/November) a festival to be celebrated ending on the day of Sadayam nakshaththiram (his birth star), on which day the image of the God at the temple of Tirunandiikkarai was to be bathed in the river and a perpetual lamp named Rajarajan to be lit every day.

He now turned his attention on his conquest of the territories in the Karnataka country, Kudamalainadu, and the Kongu region of the present Tamilnadu. Chola king Rajaraja -1 thereafter sent an ambassador to the co-regent of the king Baskara Ravi Varma-1 of Mahodai ruling from Uthahai (present Udhagamandalam also known as Udagai), namely Baskara Ravi Varma –2 probably a member from the family of Kulasekaras, requesting him to submit to Chola suzerainty and to pay tributes.

The Chola ambassador was humilated by the Chera co-regent of Uthahai and was put to prison at Uthahai, which enraged Rajaraja Chola-1 who sent a large expedition to Uthahai probably in the year A.D.1014 which was destroyed and the city was captured and it appears Baskara Ravi Varma – 2 met his death and Kongunadu which came under the control of the Cholas.

The Chola forces further moved into the Kudamalainadu the north and central regions of Kerala state and defeated Baskara Ravivarman Thiruvadi (Baskara Ravi Varaman – 1) the ruling king of the Kulasekara dynasty, and captured his capital Mahadayapuram (Kodungolur). It appears Baskara Ravi Varman -1 too accepted the Chola suzerainty and continued to rule from Mahodayapuram in the Kerala country paying tributes. This brought all the territories of Chera country ruled by the other chieftans and which were under Baskara Ravi Varman - 1 too to accept the Chola supremacy.

The Chola forces moved further into the Venad territory (Kolladesam) and captured the the region along with its seaport capital the Kollam(proper), which were at this time ruled by the chieftain Govardhana Marttanda appointed by king Baskara Ravi Varman – 1 of the Mahodayapuram in Kudamalainadu.


(11) Period of Rajendra Chola – 1 {A.D.1012 – 1044}

Rajaraja Chola – 1 died in the year A.D.1014 and was succeeeded by his son Rajendra Chola – 1 on the chola throne after being a co-regent with Rajaraja Chola from A.D1012.

During the period of Rajendra Chola – 1, in the year A.D.1019 with the agitation for freedom by the king Baskara Ravi Varman - 1 of Kerala, he sent a war expedition under the leadership of his second son Manukulakesari to Kudamalainadu in the Chera country who defeated the Chera King Baskara Ravi Varma – 1 captured his capital Mahothai and secured his crown, diadem and an island called Santhimathivu belonging to the Kerala king beyond Kerala in Arabic sea. In this war Baskara Ravi Varman - 1 met his death.

With the secure of the Chera crown the Rajendra Chola – 1 assumed the new title as Mudikonda Cholan. Rajendra Chola –1 gave the title “Chola Keralan” to his second son Manukulakesari and appointed him as the chola viceroy to rule the captured Kudamalai Nadu of the Kerala country.

However with the necessaity of he having to lead a war expedition with eastern Chalukiya king, he was recalled back from Chera country in the year A.D.1021, while appointing the Chera king Veera Keralan{A.D1021-1028} son of Baskara Ravi Varman to rule his country on accepting the Chola suzerainty.

Manululakesari met his death at the Chola-Chalukya war, and his father Rajendra Chola in his memory built a temple at Jayamaliswarem in A.D.1023, and built a Salai for providing food named as Chola-Keralan Salai, and for its revenue for expenses gifted a village named Chola-Kerala Nallur.

Rajendra Chola – 1 with the death of his mother years later, made a statue of herself and installed at the temple known as Sembianmathevi at Nagapattinam, and made arrangements for its worship. In Sri Lanka too at Polonnaruwa Rajendra Chola built a Siva temple by the name Vanavanmathevi Iswarem in her memory.

Rajendra Chola –1 had a queen named as Panchavanmathevi daughter of the Chera king Paluvettariyar and another by the name Vananvanmadevi daughter of the king Malaiyaman of Kovalur.

Rajendra Chola built a new imperial capital named as Gangaikondasolapuram west of present Chidambaram and there he built his new royal palace and named it as “Keralan Maligai” commemorating his victory over Kerala kings.


(12) Period of Rajadiraja Chola – 1 {A.D.1018-1054}

With the death of Rajendra Chola – 1 in A.D.1044 his eldest son the Rajadhiraja Chola – 1 {A.D.1018-1054} who had been a co-regent of Rajendra Chola since A.D.1018 succeeded on the Chola throne. When he ascended the throne among the countries that were still under the Chola control, was the Mahodayapuram of the Kerala country.

During this period the Chera kings of the Kulasekara dynasty at Mahodai and of Venadu, were agitating to get their freedom. Rajadhiraja – 1 to contain these agitations sent forces which first proceeded to Mahodayapuram and defeated the Chera king Veera Keralan in A.D.1028, who was put to death by his elephant Atthivaranam.

He appointed Rajasimhan {1028-1043} the son of Vira Kerala as the Chera King on he having accepted the Chola suzerainty, who continued to rule from Mahodai paying tributes to Cholas, and had friendly relations with them for some time.

This fact is surmised from the fact that the Gopalaswami Temple at Mannar Kovil in Tirunelveli was built by the Chera king Rajasimhan, but was named by him as Rajendra Chola Vinnagar. Rajendra Chola too has made a grant of land to this temple in A.D.1042.

Further in the 14th year of the Sundera Chola Pandiya devar at Mannar Koyil in Tinnelveli the Seralan Madeviyar Adicchi queen of the Chera king Rajasimhadevar made some donations to this Rajendra Chola Vinnagar Alvar.

Again in Venad the new king of Govardhana Marthanda started agitating for freedom assisted by the chieftain known as Ramakuda Muvar of the region Koovaham also of Kerala. Rajadiraja sent an expedition to Venad where it’s king was defeated and escaped from his kingdom to the jungles along with the king of Koovakam, and Rajadhiraja’s forces further destroyed the military acadamy and arms centre that became active again at Kanthalur Salai, and attacked and defeated Vilignam which revived its efforts under Aye kings to become independent, and was renamed as Rajendra Cholapattinam.

However it appears the king of Venad continued to rule accepting the suzerainty of the Cholas, and agreeing to pay tributes. Rajasimha was followed by Bhaskara Ravi – 3 {A.D.1043-1082} on the Chera throne.


(13) Period of Rajendra – 2 {A.D.1051-1063}

In the year A.D.1054 Rajadiraja Chola –1 died in the battle field at Koppam. Immediately his younger brother Rajendra Chola – 2{A.D.1051-1063} who was the co-regent with Rajadhiraja Chola – 1 from A.D.1051, crowned as the next Chola in the battle field itself and continued with the war with success to Cholas.

During this period one of his sons was given the title Chola Keralan in memory of his elder brother Manukulakesari who bore the same title as Chola Keralan.


(14) Period of Virarajendra {A.D.1063-1070}

With the demise of Rajendra –2, Virarajendra Chola{A.D.1063-1070} was crowned as the next king of the Chola empire. On he ascending the Chola throne, again the Cheras at Venad and Mahodayaouram started agiatating to free themselves from the Chola fold. Virarajendra first sent an expedition to Venad and killed the younger brother of the Kerala king named Jananathan, while the king himself escaped from his country.

Later with the agitation also from the Chera king Bhaskara Ravi – 2, it necessiated Virarajendra Chola to go on a renewed war expedition to the great cities of the Chera country namely the Uthahai and Mahodai with big elephant cavalry to suppress the agitation. The Chera king in fear escaped with his family to safety. He defeating the Chera country returned back with much tributes, elephants and maids.


(15) Period of Adhirajendra {A.D1070-1073}

With the death of Virarajendra his son Athirajendra {A.D1070-1074} succeeded on the Chola throne in A.D.1070, after being his co-regent from A.D1067. His period of rule ended within a short period of few months due to illness.

During this period a Chera chieftain by the name Kerala Kesari Athirajathirajadever who also bore the title “Virakeralan” ruling from Kongunadu have made donations to the temple of Vishnu at Thirukkannapuram in Thanjavur region for lighting of lamps.


(16) Period of Kulothunga Chola {A.D1070-1120}

After the death of Adirajendra there has been a turmoil in the Chola country with no direct male decendents in the line of the Rajaraja Chola – 1 to succeed.

Eventually the great-grandson of Rajaraja Chola – 1, namely Kulothunga Chola – 1 {A.D.1074-1120} became the rightful heir to the chola throne hailing from the female decendents of Rajaraja in the year A.D.1074.

Taking opportunity of the turmoil in the Chola country the Chera kings at Aynad, Venad and Kudamalainadu agitated to gain freedom from from the Chola kings.

Kulothunga Chola - 1 in A.D.1081 waged war with the Cheras. He captured Vilignam, Kanthalursalai including Kottaru north of Kumari all of Ayenadu. The Chera king agreed to rule as a subordinate king and pay tributes. At Kottaru in south Kerala country he stationd a nilappadai (ground force) known as Kottaru Nillapadai under the general Araiyan Mathuranthahan alias Chola Keralarasan.

Kulothunga Chola forces further moved to Mahodayapuram in Kudamalainadu in the Kerala country and defeated the Chavar forces (suicide sqads) of Baskara Ravi Varma –3 who also met his death in this war in A.D.1082. He was succeeded by Ravi Rama Varma {A.D.1082-1090} on the throne with his acceptance to pay tribute to Cholas.

He was followed by Rama Varma Kulasekara {A.D.1090 – 1102} at Mahodayapuram throne. It appears some time after A.D.1090 Rama Varma Kulasekara with his powerful Chavar forces defeated the Cholas and regained full power in Kudamalainadu. It seems Kulothunga Chola – 1 didnot take any serious attempt to regain the lost territories of the Kerala country. It appears this was the ending point of 100 years of intermittant war between the Cholas and the Cheras.

The Tamil Temple Inscriptions however mentions a few more Chola-Chera conflicts after Kulothunga – 1 during the period of the remaing Cholas upto A.D.1250
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Old 11-05-2006, 05:49 AM   #4
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Old 11-09-2006, 10:08 AM   #5
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Amazing information. thanks a lot. From where did you get all this information?
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Old 11-09-2006, 12:31 PM   #6
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The above article was written with much research done through many volumes of South Indian Tamil Inscriptions (South Indian Tamil Inscription Series), Kerala Tamil Inscriptions (Travancore Archaelogical Series), Tamil Meikeerthi's of Chola kings, Tamil Historical poetic compositions such as Raja Raja Cholan Ula, Kulothunga Cholan Ula, Vikrama Cholan Ula, Sangara Cholan Ula, Kalingaththuparani, Kulasekara Alvar's Tamil Vaishnava compositions from Naalayira Thivya Pirapandam, Cheraman Perumal Nayanar's Tamil Saiva composition from the 11th Thirumurai, Periyapuranam of Seikkilar (12th Thirumurai) - a Tamil poetic treatise on the history 63 Tamil Saiva Saints of Tamil Nadu.

Also Elamkulam Kunjan Pillai's work titled "History of Kerala" in English too have been useful.
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Old 09-28-2007, 03:33 PM   #7
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Old 09-29-2007, 06:34 AM   #8
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Old 01-15-2008, 03:44 PM   #9
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Thank you!
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Old 01-17-2008, 05:08 AM   #10
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the Chola and Chera are infact a family offshot of the ancient Pandiyan Kindom family Tree.
Very distanced realted cousins.
What is known as Malayalam and Telugu now was indeed a dialect of Tamil then.
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Old 01-19-2008, 07:11 PM   #11
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Enathu nandrigal pala kodi
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Old 03-03-2008, 02:24 AM   #12
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the Chola and Chera are infact a family offshot of the ancient Pandiyan Kindom family Tree.
Very distanced realted cousins.
What is known as Malayalam and Telugu now was indeed a dialect of Tamil then.
More so of Malayalam, Telugu had more independence from Tamil, from what I've studied in the past, Telugu branched from an Eastern Dravidian dialect independent of Tamil, and due to location it has borrowed words from Tamil. Malayalam is basically Tamil that became somewhat Sanskritized, in a sense, you can call it a dialect of Tamil, because out of all the South Indian languages, it is the closest.
As far as the kingdoms go, I believe Cherans ruled 75% of present day Kerala, and Pandyans ruled 25% (Southern Kerala), is that so? Reason why I'm saying is because the sabarimalai ayyappan kovil has Tamil ties, the royal family that is connected to it are descendents of Pandyan kings. Somebody please elaborate if you can...
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Old 08-01-2008, 04:46 AM   #13
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thanks ...
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Old 11-20-2008, 08:27 AM   #14
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Chola Inroads into Pallava Region:

http://www.hindu.com/2008/11/20/stor...2057012200.htm
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Old 04-01-2009, 01:41 AM   #15
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Re-edited
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Old 09-09-2010, 07:37 AM   #16
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Old 09-10-2010, 03:25 AM   #17
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Thiru Virarajendra,

You have given a very lucidly narrated account and have set out the details in a reader-friendly manner. As usual, very well done.
I can see that you have taken much pains in producing this work.
If I need to refer to this part of the history for any reason, I do not need to resort to the books. I just have to consult your article.

VazththukkaL.

anbudan
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Old 09-10-2010, 08:16 PM   #18
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Anbudaiya M/s Sivamaalaa,

Mikka Nantri

Anbudan

Virarajendra
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Old 12-31-2011, 02:53 AM   #19
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Old 05-19-2012, 09:35 PM   #20
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