Sheldon Pollock’s ‘Aesthatization of Power Theory’ demolished by evidence of ‘Pallava Inscriptions’

By: Satya Srinivas

Sheldon Pollock a Western Indologist has attributed Aesthatization of Power (AOP) theory to the spread of Sanskrit and Hinduism by Hindu kings. Rajiv Malhotra in his recent book “The Battle for Sanskrit” explained and debunked Sheldon Pollock’s gross misunderstanding of Raj Dharma as Aesthatization of Power (AOP). As per Sheldon Pollock Aesthatization of Power (AOP) theory below are basic points (Chapter 5 Location 3044):
  1. The King’s core function is protection of the Brahmins
  2. The well-being of Brahmins is so necessary that they perform Vedic yajnas in order to maintain balance in the cosmic order: and
  3. The supposed unlimited power of the king is this implicitly justified no matter how oppresive it may be.
This theory has been debunked by Rajiv Malhotra with below arguements (Chapter 5 Location 3044)
While it is true that great emphasis is placed on protecting the domains of sacredness (associated with Brahmins) and goverance (associated with Kshatriyas), Pollock is silent about the other duties of raj dharma. He simply ignores other shastras such as Arthashastra, which explicitly lays down the reasons for the king to maintain the welfare of all subjects and which offers specific injunctions on how to go about doing so. Ensuring economic welfare and ecological balance are, for instance two key principles of raj dharma as laid out in the Arthashastra.”
I came across application of this fancy AOP theory by a research scholar Mekhola Gomes of JNU, who is in awe with AOP theory and has two research titles based on this theory. 
She is even very unhappy about pulping of controversial book of Wendy Doniger The Hindus: An Alternate Theory.
Currently she is conducting a conference titled “The Aesthetics of Power: Representations of Kingship within the Early Pallava Imperium” on March 21st in IISc Bangalore. A clear extention of Pollock’s AOP theory.
 –
The details are below:
Dear All,

Literary, Arts and Heritage Forum
NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ADVANCED STUDIES
Indian Institute of Science Campus,
Bengaluru - 560 012

is pleased to invite you to a talk on

“The Aesthetics of Power: Representations of Kingship within the
Early Pallava Imperium”

By

​​Mekhola Gomes
Doctoral Scholar, Centre for Historical Studies,
Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi

Chairperson : Naresh Keerthi, NIAS

Date:               Monday, 21st March, 2016
Time:               4:30 pm
Venue:             Lecture Hall, NIAS

Abstract:   The period of Pallava rule in Tamil Nadu was a dynamic time in
South Indian history, with innovations in several spheres. These included
the construction of cave-shrines, structural temples, creation of new
iconographies, and inscriptional encomiums. In this talk, I attend to the
changing aesthetics of power in the Pallava kingdom through a juxtaposition
of texts and images. Starting the 4th century CE, inscriptional genealogies
praised Pallava kings in innovative ways. These innovations were elaborated
within and through the construction of royal cave-shrines and structural
temples beginning the 7th century CE.  Through inscriptional panegyrics,
the construction of cave-shrines, and structural temples, the Pallavas
inaugurated a new aesthetics of power. This emergent aesthetics of power
was created within and through a larger field of representation. I will
compare representational strategies of kingship within inscriptions of the
Early Pallavas with visual delineations of power in rock-cut cave- shrines
and stone temples.  I suggest that the Pallavas created a new aesthetics of
power in early south India, through both the textual and visual and it is
only through the interpretation of text and image together that we can
fully appreciate the emergence of this new aesthetic.
-
About the Speaker: Mekhola Gomes is a doctoral scholar in early Indian
history at the Centre for Historical Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University.
Her thesis, explores representations and practices of political power in
the Deccan, between the 3rd and 8th centuries CE. She is co-editing a
forthcoming volume on the epigraphical (re)turn in the study of ancient
Indian history.


After reading the description, I wanted to really check if Pallavas are so imperialistic who otherwise known for their great architecture, political acumen and cultural development.
So I started searching for Pallava’s inscriptions and found a very good website of http://www.whatisindia.com/ online (Founded by Aravind Sitaraman, a Computer Scientist in 1995). The site contains a collection of Pallava inscriptions translation done by  C. R. KRISHNAMACHARLU, Epigraphical Department in 1943.

http://www.whatisindia.com/inscriptions/south_indian_inscriptions/volume_12/preface.html
After going through the collection below are my observations:
Yes there is prashasthi of kings just like how details of a modern day donors are inscribed either in a temple or some charity organization. Not beyond that. And in some cases the kings made offerings whenever there was victory over their opponents which is part of our Hindu tradition of offering to god once the wish is fulfilled.
But attributing the growth of Hinduism due to such prashasthi or Aesthatization of Power (AOP) by Pollock is stretching too far. Apart from that remaining carvings of the temple are mostly about the gods, or carvings based on our purana ithihaasas which clearly talks about genuine divine love of our kings for the Hindu gods and the religion.
Apart from the inscriptions related to kings there were many inscriptions related to donations made by common man such as traders and even maid servants. If the king’s objective behind building temples was to use AOP to spread their kingdom, why will they allow common man’s deeds inscribed.
Simhavishnu or Avanisimha first Pallava monarch who extended his dominions beyond Kanchi in the South.  He has not left any stone or copper-plate inscriptions, but is known only through the records of his successors.” This statement debunks Pollock’s AOP theory completely.
Another statement below supports arguement that kings are not that interested in AOP.
Pallavamalla, also called Kshatriyamalla and Sridhara, revived the practice of quoting regnal years in inscriptions, which had been apparently given up by his immediate predecessors.”
There is a gradual shift of language used in inscriptions from Sanskrit to Tamil, it was not abrupt. Even after the shift, initial part is writtern in Sanskrit and remaining in Tamil.
This supports Rajiv Sir explanation of Vernacularization might have resulted from an attachment to one’s mother tongue or ethinicity.
From his (Pallavamalla ) time onwards Tamil came to be the main language used by the Pallavas in their inscriptions, though a few records continued to be in Sanskrit.  This language was first adopted by Mahendravarman I himself in a few records of his (No. 16, fn. 2); but from the time of Paramesvaravarman I, the practice came into vogue of inscribing a part of the record in Sanskrit and the rest in Tamil.[33]
The inscriptions also speaks about the distribution of powers. All the temples are managed by committies or trusts not by a individiual. So the arguement of nexus of Kings and brahmins is also not that strong. Moreover in one inscription Brahmins were considered as defaultors because of they stood surety for some individuals who did not paid their dues. And loan was given to (note they were not written off) Brahmins to repay those dues. If Brahmins have such influence as mentioned by Pollock why were the dues were not written off.
Some inscriptions show that temples are not just spiritual centers but much more than that. Some talk about social programs like offering food to piligrims, desilting tank in a village etc.
Below are some of the inscriptions examples supporting my above observations.
No. 54.
(A. R. No. 8 of 1934-35).
Padur, Chingleput Taluk and District.
On a slab set up in the street called ‘Mettutteruvu’.
The beginning of this inscription is lost, but from palaeography and the letters Nan traceable in the first line, it may be assigned to Nandivarman III.   It is dated in the 18th year and registers the gift of 96 sheep by the shepherds (kottaanradis) of Amur-kottam for burning a perpetual lamp before the god Peruma[na*]digal ‘who was pleased’ to stand at Vilupperundaya-Visnugriham in Paduvur.
No. 90.
(A. R. No. 190 of 1912).
Tiruvorriyur, Saidapet Taluk, Chingleput District.
On a slab built into the floor of the mandapa in
 front of the central shrine in the Adhipurisvara temple.
On this slab of stone, three records are engraved one in continuation of another in the same hand.  The name of the king in the first record is damaged; the second is dated in the 7th year of Kampavarman[6]while the third belongs to the 6th year of Aparajita.  They appear, therefore, to have been engraved on the slab in the same time; but what necessitated the procedure is not clear.  The last record registers an agreement made in the 6th year of Vijaya-Aparajitavikrama-Pottaraiyar, by the assembly of Manali, hamlet of Tiruvorriyur, to burn two perpetual lamps before the god Mahadeva at Tiruvorriyur, in lieu of the interest on 60 kalanju  of gold received by them from the community of Mahesvaras.
The endowed amount was invested with the assembly as fixed deposit bearing interest at the usual rate of 3 manjadi per kalanju.  The assembly promised also to give two meals daily to the person who came to collect the interest and if they failed in their duty, they agreed to pay a fine of 8½ kanam per day to the court of justice.
No. 95.
(A. R. No. 435 of 1905).
On the same wall.
This inscription refers to a remission of taxes made by the assembly of Tiruttaniyal in the 18th year of Vijaya-Aparajitavikramavarman, on 1000 kuli of land situated to the north of the temple, purchased by Nambi Appi from the cultivators of the village and given over to the dharmigal of the village for providing offerings to and burning two twilight lamps in the temple of Tiruvirattanattudeva in the same village.  The donor is evidently identical with the builder of the temple mentioned in the above inscription.
The dharmigal were perhaps a body that managed the charitable endowments and trust property in the village.
No. 34.
(A. R. No. 109 of 1932-33).
Paiyanur, Chingleput taluk and District.
On a rock near the dilapidated temple of Ettisvara.
This record is dated in the 37th year of Vijaya-Nandivikramavarman who, from the palaeography of the inscription and the high regnal year quoted in it, may be identified with Pallavamalla.  It registers an agreement made by the gana of Payinur to remove annually the silt from the big tank of the village for the interest on 6,400 kadi of paddy received by them by the standard measure por-kal, from Nagan, a merchant of Ulakkuni residing at Mamallapuram. The document is signed by Settanandi, evidently a member of the gana.  The village Paiyanur is very close to Mahabalipuram and the earliest epigraphical reference to ‘Mamallapuram’ is to be found in the present inscription.
It may be pointed out that the epithets ‘Vijaya’ and ‘Vikramavarman’ added to his name by Nandivarman, were invariably adopted by his successors.[10]
No. 42.
(A. R. No. 283 of 1916).
Tondur, Gingee Taluk, South Arcot District.
On a Boulder in a field near the ‘Vinnamparai-rock’.
This inscription[14] is dated in the 6th year of  Vijaya-Dantivikramavarman and it registers a gift of 16 kalanju of gold by Vinnakovaraiyar, probably a chieftain of the locality, to provide, from th interest on the amount, offerings to the goddess Erruk-Kunranar-Bhattari for the merit of Udaradi and Nambi ……… who fell in an  encounter.  The food offered to the god was used for feeding pilgrims and the gold endowed was received by the assembly of Aruvagur in Singapura-nadu.  Certain specified members of the Varigam were nominated to see that the assembly maintained this charity properly.  The village Aruvagur, which is stated to have been situated to the east of the road, may be identified with Arugavur in the Gingee taluk.
No. 47.
(A. R. No. 158 of 1919).
Kiliyanur, Tinivanam Taluk, South Arcot District.
On the south wall of the central shrine in the Vaikunthavasa-Perumal temple.
This inscription is dated in the 3rd year of  Vijaya-Nandivikramavarman who may be identified with Nandivarman III.  It states that a resident of the village Tigaittiral built the temple of Tigaittiral Vishnugriha at Kilinelur in Oyma-nadu and gave 300 sheep for maintaining a sacred lamp and 2 pieces of land (seru) made tax-free, for providing offerings to the god.  In later inscriptions the god is called Virrirunda-Perumal (A.R.  Nos.163 and 168 of 1919).
No. 49.
(C. P. No. 24 of  1910-11).
Velurpalaiyam Plates of Nandivarman III: 6th year.
This copper-plate record issued in the 6th year of Nandivarman  (III) registers a gift of the village Srikattuppalli, to the Siva temple built by Yajnabhatta, at the request of Chola-Maharaja Kumarankusa, for the expenses of daily worship and for a feeding house.  This Chola-Maharaja and Vijayalaya, the founders of the revived Chola line at Tanjore are taken to have belonged to one and the same family.  This is doubtful and he should probably have belonged to the family of Renandu Cholas[17].
No. 39.
(A. R. No. 256 of 1908).
Vayalur, Chingleput Taluk, Chingleput District.
On a slab built into the floor of the mandapa in front of the central shrine in the vanadhisvara temple.
This inscription records a gift of 3 kadi  (of paddy) by five individuals for offerings and a lamp in the temple of Bhatara at Vayalaikka, in the 2nd year of Vijaya-Dantivikramavarman.
No. 103.
(A. R. No. 174 of 1912).
Tiruvorriyur, Saidapet Taluk, Chingleput District.
On a slab built into the floor of the verandah
round the central shrine in the Adhipurisvara temple.
This date of this record of Vijaya-Kampavarman  is not clear.  It might be 11, 13 or 16.  The inscription records an agreement made by the assembly (ur) of Vaikkattur ro provide offerings to the god Mahadeva at Tiruvorriyur, on the day of sankranti, for the interest on 27 kalanju of gold received by them from Pudi Arindigai, wife of Videlvidugu[Ilankove]lar of Kodumbalur[1] in Ko-nadu.  The chiefs of Kodumbalur (in the Pudukkottai state) figure largely in inscriptions as subordinates of the Cholas, but their connection with the Pallavas is not so well known.  A chief of this family is also mentioned in a mutilated record from Kilur[2], dated in the 11th year of Vijaya-Nandivikramavarman, where the donor is stated to be the wife of Sattan maravan and the daughter of Vikrama-Pudi who is probably identical with Videlvidugu Ilanko-Adiaraiyan mentioned in the same record.
No. 105.
(A. R. No. 372 of 1911).
Tiruvorriyur, Saidapet Taluk, Chingleput District.
On a slab built into the floor at the entrance into the second prakara of the Adhipurisvara temple.
The construction of a temple of Niranjanesvarattu-Mahadeva at Tiruvorriyur by a certain Niranjanaguravur of the place and the gift of 20,00 kuli of land by purchase from the assembly of Manali for its upkeep, are recorded in this inscription of Vijaya-Kampavarman dated in the 19th year.  The document was drawn up by Rudrappottar Kumara-Kalan, the madhyastha of the village.  The communities Mandirattar and Kombaruttar are mentioned in II. 29 – 30.
The inscription is stated to have been engraved by Tiruvorriyur-Acharyan alias Paramesvaran, son of Samundacharya.
The pullis are marked in the inscription.
No. 108.
(A. R. No. 345 of 1906).
Uttukkadu, Conjeeveram Taluk, Chingleput District.
On the south wall of the ruined Perumal temple.
This is dated in the 25th year of Vijaya-Kampavarman and registers the agreement made by the tirunamakkilavar of Ulaichcheri in Urrukkadu to burn three lamps and to provide offerings (to the god) for the money and land received by them from Pusali Vamanan, a resident of the village.  The name of the temple is not mentioned in the record, but from the reference made in it to the mahesvaras, it seems to have been dedicated to Siva.
No. 109.
(A. R. No. 82 of 1932-33).
Anur, Chingleput Taluk and District.
On the south wall of the mandapa in front of the central shrine in the Astrapurisvara temple.
This is a damaged and incomplete record of Kampavikra[mavarman] dated in the 25th year.  It registers an agreement made by the sabha of Aniyur to burn a perpetual lamp before the god Vambankattur-Mahadeva for the interest on 40 kalanju of gold received by them from Periya Sridhara-Kramavittan of Arivilimangalam, a member of the alum-gana, evidently of Anur.
No. 110.
(A.R. No. 283 of 1919).
Madam, Wandiwash Taluk, North Arcot District.
On the side of a boulder called Sarukkamparai About a furlong to the south of the village.
This inscription records that in the 26th year of Vijaya-Kamapavarman, Jayavallavan (Jayavallabha) a merchant of Kulattur in Tennarrur-nadu, a subdivision of Palkunrak-kottam purchased land from the urar of the village and presented it as erippatti for the maintenance of a tank, evidently at Madam.
No. 114.
(A.R. No. 152 of 1916).
Kilpulam, Arkonam Taluk, North Arcot District.
On the north, west and south walls of the Kailasanatha temple.
This record registers a gift of land made in the 2nd year of Vayiramegavarman by Mullikkudaiyan Adittanali for conducting the tiruppali (i.e., sribali) ceremony and for offerings during the three services in the temple of Tirukkulichcharattu-Alvar at Palkalam in Damar-kottam, with five persons including one for beating the gong (segandigai) and two for blowing the trumpets (kalam).  The assembly (ur) of Palkalam entrusted the endowed land to Arayanichchingan, a drummer (uvaichchan) residing in the village.

The village Palkalam may be identified with Kilpulam itself.


No. 129.

(A. R. No. 229 of 1925).
Akkur, Mayavaram Taluk, Tanjore District.
On the east side of the base of the mandapa in front of the Tanto Risvara temple.
This inscription states that Kopperunjingadeva who is called Alagiya-Pallavar alias Virapratapar, after imprisoning the Hoysalas and levying tribute from the Pandyas, proceeded to the Chola country along the southern bank of the Kaveri.  Proceeding due east, he worshipped at all the sacred shrines, repaired temples and remitted all the taxes on temple lands.  While camping during this march at a village, probably Akkur itself, in Jayangondasola-valanadu, he found that the tenants had ‘migrated as far as the Ganges’ leaving the lands waste.  Sympathising with their position, he remitted the arrears of taxes due from them, restored their original holdings and invited the emigrants to settle on their original lands.
The present inscription is probably connected with No. 124 above.  Since the defeat of the Hoysalas is also referred to here, this record may be assigned to Kopperunjinga 1.  The defeat on the Pandyas claimed in this record could not have taken place after the accession of the powerful Pandya sovereign Jatavarman Sundara-Pandya I in A.D. 1251.
It may be pointed out here that Kopperunjinga’s fortifications built on the north bank of the river Kaveri against his enemies the Hoysalas are referred to in a record from Tiruvenkadu.[3]
No. 131.
(A. R. No. 69 of 1918).
Vriddhachalam, Vriddhachalam Taluk, South Arcot District.
In the second gopura (right of entrance) of the Vriddhagirisvara temple.
This inscription records a provision made in the 2nd year of Sakalabhuvanachchakravarttigal Kopperunjingadeva for burning a perpetual lamp before the god at Tirumudukunram in Paruvur-kurram, a subdivision of Merka-nadu Irungolappadi-nadu situated in Virudarajabhayankara-valanadu, by Adaippu Tirukkarturai-Udaiyan Kunramuttaraiyan, son of Nerkuppai-Nadalvan Gunamudaiyan, one of the Pallis having the hereditary right of watchman ship in the temple.
The initial date of this chief is fixed in A.D. 1243[4] by a record from Conjeeveram[5], which equates the Saka year 1182 (A.D. 1260) with his 18th year.  The astronomical details given in the record correspond to A.D. 1244, November 13, Sunday.   The chief may, therefore, be identified with Kopperunjingadeva II.
No. 147.
(A. R. No. 323 of 1921).
Tirukkoyilur, Tirukkoyilur Taluk, South Arcot District.
On the north wall of the second prakara in the Trivikrama-Perumal temple.
It is stated in this record of Sakalabhuvanachakravarttin Avanialappirandan alias Kopperunjingadeva, dated in the 5th year, that the kaniyalar of the temple of Tiruvidaikali-Emberuman at Tirukkovalur agreed to burn a twilight lamp in the temple in return for six cows received by them from certain shepherds residing at Melaip-Panippakkam in Idaiyarru-nadu, a subdivision of Tirumunaippadi.
For the cows received the kaniyalar undertook to supply, by the ulagalandannali, 1 nali and 1 uri of ghee monthly to the temple.
The astronomical details given in the record correspond to A.D. 1247, December 29, Sunday.
No. 149.
(A. R. No. 296 of 1913).
Chidambaram, Chidambaram Taluk, South Arcot District.
On the north wall of the third prakara in the Nataraja temple.
This inscription gives an insight into the management of the temple affairs.  It is dated in the 6th year of Sakalabhuvanachakravartti Avaniyalappirandar  alias Kopperunjingadeva. The temple at Chidambaram was at this time managed by a committee consisting of the following members and groups, viz., Jayatungap-Pallavaraiyar, Tillaiambalap-Pallavaraiyar, Mahesvara-kankaniseyvar, Srikaryanseyvar, Samudayancheyvar, Koyilanayakancheyar, Tirumaligaikkuruseyvar and the accountants.
It registers a grant of land made by Sottai-Nayaka alias Kumara-Bhatta of Irayur residing in Ponmeyndasola-chaturvedimangalam for a flower garden called ‘Tirunilai-Alagiya’ for supplying flowers to the god and the goddess Tirukkamakkottamudaiya Periyanachchiyar with an additional plot by purchase from Ponnandi, wife of Ulaichchanan Madevan Tiruchchirrambalamudaiyan of Perumbarrappuliyur, as tirunamattukkani, for the maintenance of the person looking after this garden.
The village ponmeyndasola-chaturvedimangalam must have been so named after the title of Kulottunga-Chola II.[9]  The inscription purports to be an order of Solakon.
No. 151.
(A. R. No. 304 of 1913).
Chidambaram, Chidambaram Taluk, South Arcot District.
On the north wall of the third prakara in the Nataraja temple.
This inscription, dated in the 7th year, contains an order of the officer Solakonissued to the authorities of the temple at Chidabaram, to engrave on their temple walls, the gift of a flower garden made after purchase by a devaradiyar named Pillaiyar Sirridai Arivai and one Irangalmitta-pillaiyar, for providing flowers for the goddess Tirukkamakkottamudaiya-Periyanachchiyar and for the maintenance of two servants looking after the garden.
It may be mentioned that the officers Jayatunga-Pallavaraiyar, Tillaiambala-Pallavaraiyar and Tennavan-Brahmamarayan[1] mentioned here also figure in No. 124 of 1888, a record of the 28th year of Maravarman Kulasekharadeva (A.D. 1296) from the same temple.
No. 157.
(A. R. No. 318 of 1913).
Chidabaram, Chidambaram Taluk, South Arcot District.
On the north wall of the third prakara in the Nataraja temple.
This record, also dated in the 9th year of the chief, registers an order of Solakon makidng a gift of 27 and odd ma of land, by purchase from several individuals, for the maintenance of gardeners working in three different gardens, namely, one, in korrangudi alias Pavittiramanikkanallur, hamlet of Perumbarrappuliyur, and the others called ‘Avaniyalappirandan-tengu-tirunandavanam’ in the same village and ‘Adiravisiaduvan-tirunandavanam’ at Madandayarmanikkanallur. The gift is stated to have been made for the welfare of Kopperunjinga (devar tirumenikku nanraga). The lands purchased were situated in the devadana villages of (given by) Tamilnadu-katta-Pallavaraiyar.[5]
No. 159.
(A. R. No. 312 of 1913).
Chidambaram, Chidambaram Taluk, South Arcot District.
On the north wall of the third prakara in the Nataraja temple.
This inscription, dated in the 10th year, records an order issued by Solakon for the welfare of his master. It pertains to an exchange of 140 – 7/8 kuli of land in Pallippadai alias Vikramasolanallur in which was situated the temple of Pidari Tiruchchirrambala-Makali, for an equal extent of land (i.e., 141 kuli) purchased from the temple of Varanavasi-Mahadeva, according to the sadhana given by Parasavan Tiruchchirrambalamudaiyan alias Kanakasabhapati-panditan who had the kani-right of the former temple. This land was made tax-free by order of the officer Solakon, for the welfare of Kopperunjingadeva. The inscription reveals the existence of a committee called ‘Nilavaravu-kuttap-perumakkal’ which was probably in charge of land income. Some of the temple authorities mentioned here also figure in the time of Rajraja III and Jatavarman Sundara-Pandya in a few records of the village[6]. The documents connected with this transaction were ordered to be preserved in the temple treasury.
The Pidari temple is stated to have been situated on the southern side of the ‘Vikkiramasolan-tengu-tiruvidi’, along which the god (at Chidambaram) was taken in procession of the sea during festival days.
Vikkiramasolanallur is here called Pallippadai, but in No. 275 of 1913 belonging to Jatavarman Sundara-Pandya I dated in the 14th regnal year it bears the alternative name of Akkan-Pallippadai. From this it may perhaps be inferred that the remains of the elder sister (akkan) of Vikrama-Chola were interred here and that the village called after the king as ‘Vikkiramasolanallur’ was founded at this locality.
No. 180.
(A. R. No. 317 of 1921).
Tirukkoyilur, Tirukkoyilur Taluk, South Arcot District.
On the north wall of the second prakara of the Trivikrama-Perumal temple.
This inscription of the 13th year records a gift of 16 cows by Suliyamalagiyan alias Lakesvaradevan, son of Nachchi alias Tiruvengadapperumal Manikkam, a maidservant of the temple of Tiruvidaikkali-Nayanar at Tirukkovalur in Kurukkai-kurram, a subdivision of Miladu alias Jananatha-valanadu[2], for providing one alakku of ghee daily by the measure Ulagalandan-nali to the god Tiruvidaikali-Nayanar.
The astronomical details given in the record are regular for A.D. 1256, January 3, with the emendation Purva-Bhadrapada for Sravana.
No. 204.
(A. R. No. 196 of 1930).
Kunnattur, Sriperumbudur Taluk, Chingleput District.
On the west wall of the central shrine in the Tirunagesvara temple.
In this record dated in the 17th year, it is stated that the assembly in charge of the central shrine in the temple of Tirunagisvaramudaiya-Nayanar at Kunrattur in Puliyur-kottam alias Kulottungasola-valanadu, a subdivision of Jayangondasola-mandalam, received 3 palankasu from Piraiyanivanudalar, the daughter of Ponnalvar, a servant attached to the temple and agreed to burn a twilight lamp before the imae of dakshinamurti set up by her in the temple. It may be pointed out here that in this inscription no distinction is made between the territorial divisions ‘kottam’ and ‘valanadu’.
No. 232.
(A. R. No. 498 of 1921).
On the north wall of the mandapa in front of the central
shrine in the vaikuntha-Perumal temple in the same village.
This is also dated in the 27th year and it records a gift of 4 cows to supply monthly 1 nali of ghee by the measure Arumolideva-nali for burning a twilight lamp in the temple of Sri-Vaiku(nda)nthadeva at Tiruvennainallur, by Perungakon Sivanandan, a shepherd residing at Kayirurpattu.
No. 246.
(A. R. No. 191 of 1904).
Tiruvakkarai, Villupuram Taluk, South Arcot District.
On the south base of the 1000-pillar mandapa
inside the second prakara of the Chandramaulisvara temple.
This present inscription which is not dated gives the surnames Kadavan Avaniyalappirandan, Sarvanjan, Khadgamalla[7], and Kripanamalla to Kopperunjinga II. It records that the chief constructed a sluice, with a feeder-channel, to the tank at Olugarai. In the Sanskrit version appended to the epigraph the channel is stated to have been named ‘Tribhuvananripanatha.’ The village Olugarai is in French India about 2 miles from Pondicherry. It was also known as Kulottungasolanallur (A. R. No. 175 of 1904), evidently after Kulottunga-Chola I.
No. 258.
(A. R. No. 503 of 1926).
Omampuliyur, Chidambaram Taluk, South Arcot District.
On the west and south walls of the central shrine in the Pranava-Vyaghrapurisvara temple.
The date of this damaged inscription is lost. It gives an instance of how the temple came to the rescue of persons placed in financial difficulties. The record states that certain Brahmans of Ulagalandasola-chaturvedimangalam, a brahmadeya in Merka-nadu, a subdivision of Virudarajabhayankara-valanadu ‘on the northern bank’, had stood surety for some tenants who went away without paying the dues on their lands. The duty of paying the arrears of dues devolved upon these persons, who when pressed for payment tried in vain to transfer the lands to others. Finally they requested the trustees of the temple, evidently at Omampuliyur, to advance them money by taking at least a portion of the land as tirunamattukkani. The trustees thereupon sold some ornaments in the treasury which were perhaps not in use, and with the proceeds, assisted the Brahmans by buying the land for the temple.
In this inscription Omampuliyur is called Ulagalandasola-chaturvedimangalam.
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