MONUMENTS IN KRISHNA

 

Monument No: 1

Monument Name:ANCIENT SITE WITH THE MOUND MARKING THE BUDDHIST STUPAS IN IT

Location: Alluru

Brief History:
The village of Alluru, in district Krishna, is known for its Buddhist remains since 1926. The antiquity of the site goes back atleast to circa 2nd century A.D. The brick stupa unearthed here is wheel-shaped on plan with a circular solid hut and spokes and tyre the hollowed sixteen cells filled with earth and bricks. The drum has a diameter of 23.37 meters and survived to a height of 2.65 mtr. It had four ayaka pillars at the cardinal projections of the drum each 4.46 in length and 61 cm wide. A stone pillared mandapa also existed. A limestone inscribed pillar with half-lotus medallions lies in the compound of the Siva temple. A standing life size Buddha of this place is now exhibited in the Victoria Jubilee Museum, Vijayawada. Three more smaller images from this place are in Site Museum, Amaravati. The other associated finds from the stupa include carved casing slabs and a stucco head etc. An inscription on the octogal pillar, dated in the 8th regnal year of Ehavula Chantamula, records the erection of Selakhambha by Venhusiri, resident of Halur. The records also mentions the acharyas residing at Sikharaga, the talaparimajakas and Arya-Sancha.

Monument No:2

Monument Name:BUDDHIST REMAINS IN A MOUND

Location: Ghantasala

Brief History:
Ghantasala ancient Kantakasola, (Sanskrit Kantakasaila) was once renowned Buddhist center, teeming with monuments of great beauty. Ptolemy made a specific mention of the emporium of Kontakossyla in the region of Maisolia (Masaulipatam). There was close contact between the people of Ghantasala and other Buddhist centers such as Amarvati, and Nagarjunakonda, and evidence of donations made by them to each other are available. This mound knows as Lanja-Dibba containing the ruins of the Mahachaitya was excavated by A. Rea in 1894. The internal constructions of the dome is in the form of a wheel with two concentric circular walls, connected to each other by sixteen radial walls, which is 34.16 M in diameter. It is surrounded by a processional path, paved with bricks. The stupa was once encased with lavishly decorated sculptured slabs, similar to that of the Amarvati stupa. There is also evidence of the ornate railing, which must have once encircled the Mahachaitya. There are traces of the pillared mandapa in its vicinity, and two of the pillars bear inscriptions in Ikshvaku characters. Ancient Ghantasala's prosperity was mostly due to the sea-borne trade. A number of Roman gold coins and hundreds of copper and lead coins of Satavahanas with the ship motif found here are a testimony to the Indo-Roman trade that had once flourished. The excavation at the central part of the Mahachaitya has yielded two earthen pots of which one contains a small lead coin, beads and pieces of semi-precious stones and the other having a glazed pot inside containing two bone pieces, beads, pearls, crystal pieces and two bits of gold leaf.

Monument No: 3

Monument Name:MOUND CONTAINING BUDDHIST REMAINS AND ANCIENT VILLAGE SITE

Location: Gudivada

Brief History:
The mound containing a Buddhist stupa is locally called as Lanjadibba. As many of Buddhist sites, this stupa was also subjected to large-scale vandalism. According to Sewell this stupa most have been of the same size as that of Sanchi, the basal area being nearly 140 feet square. As no traces of stone exist in the neighbourhood it is supposed that the rail might have been made of brick or wood. Four stone receptacles each containing a crystal reliquary was also found from this stupa.

Monument No: 4

Monument Name:SCULPTURES,CARVINGS,IMAGES,BAS RELIEFS,INSCRIPTIONS,OR OTHER LIKE OBJECTS FOUND IN THE VICINITY OF THE OLD MOSQUE

Location: Gudur

Brief History:
There are two inscribed pillars of Hindu origin in the compound of the mosque. They are inscribed in Early Telugu Characters datable to 1390 AD and the other one is datable to 1536 AD. One of the inscriptions on these pillars records the grant of a village to a temple, while the other records the change of the name of Gumudura village into Raghupatipuram and its grant to some people. There are two Persian inscriptions embedded in the franking wall of the mosque, the earliest among them is dated 970 H. (1562 A.D), recording the erection of a mosque by Malak Nayab, during the reign of Qutb Shah (Ibrahim Quli). The real name of Malak Nayab was Rif'at Khan Lari, which is mentioned by Firishta, who also gives a detailed account of the Malik's conquest of the country on the east and south of Telingana. The name Gudur does not occur in the account of the conquest, but from its situation on the eastern border of Telingana, which fell to the Moslem arms, it is apparent that Gudur also met the same fate. Firishta has not given the exact year of Rif'at Khan's expedition, but he states that he had marched to the south before the battle of Talikota (972 H.=1565 A.D). The date of the erection of the mosque, as given in the inscription, is 970 A.H., so it is not unreasonable to assume that the mosque was built to celebrate the conquest of the place by the Moslems. The inscription is carved on an arch-shaped stone tablet measuring 3' 3" from apex to bottom and 2' 6" in width. The text consists of six lines; the two top ones contain the name of God and the king, and the remaining four give in Persian verse the name of the builder, the date of the building and similar other oarticulars. The style is Nasta`liq of a very fine type.
TRANSLATION: Unto God ! During the reign of the Sultan, refuge of the world, worthy of the crown and the seal, Qutb Shah. "In this castle of azure colour, when from the 'Migration' (of the Prophet) Seventy years were added to the nine centuries: Malik Nayab (Lord Deputy), the master of pomp and glory, The chosen one of the exalted king: Built this sacred Mosque, For the servants of God to worship therein. May, O God, till this world lasts His life and glory endure !" In the history of the Qutub Shahi kings, the reign of Ibrahim Quli Qutub Shah is conspicuous for vast conquest, internal peace and prosperity of the Kingdom, and patronage of learning and art. Two great generals who helped the king ot consolidate and extend his empire were Mustafa Khan and Rif`at Khan Lari. The name of the former is preserved in the most beautifully carved Arabic inscription on the Makki Gate of the Golkonda Fort. No monument associated with Rif`at Khan Lari's name was known before the discovery of this inscription. The other inscription is datable to 1063 H., contains the name of the deceased and the date of his demise in a chronogram. The inscription is carved on an arched-shaped tablet measuring 3'3" from top to bottom, and 1' 8" in width.
TRANSLATION: O Most Merciful and Compassionate ! Departed from this frail world, one of good habits, of angelic nature, In the ocean of grace and power how skilfully he steered his boat. The inspirer of the Unkonwn whispered to me early in the morn, "Write The chronogram of his death - Hashim of heavenly abode."

Monument No: 5

Monument Name: HILLOCK CONTAINING THE MOUND MARKING THE REMAINS OF ANCIENT BUDDHIST STUPAS SITUATED ON IT

Location: Gummadidurru

Brief History:
The excavation at the place unearthed the lower portion of the main stupa having its drum encased with sculptured slabs and a dozen small stupas. The size and the style of decoration tallies with the Maha Chaitya at Amaravati. The site has also yielded a number of inscription reiging in date from 2nd century A.D to late medieval period suggesting a prolonged existence of Buddhism at the place. One of the horizontals sculptured frieze depicts some life scenes of Buddha. Near the western ayaka platform is a standing figure of Buddha having a dedicatory record datable to about the 7th century. From the style of its construction and characters of the early inscriptions the main stupa is datable to 2nd -3rd century A.D.

Monument No: 6

Monument Name: BUDDHIST REMAINS OF A STUPA ON THE HILL

Location: Jaggayyapeta

Brief History:
From the excavations conducted here many votive stupas, chaityas and monasteries have been unearthed. The diameter of the stupa referred to as Mahachaitya in the inscriptions is 9.60 m. Around this stupa is the pradakshinapatha, 3.50m in width. The slabs surrounding the base of the stupa are mostly plain. Some of the sculptures on the pilasters resemble in style the Bharhut sculptures and also the earliest ones in Amaravati. The capitals are bell shaped with two adorned animals at the top like that at Pithalkhora. Some of the slabs were inscribed in characters datable to the 2nd century BC.

Monument No: 7

Monument Name: BANDAR FORT:
1.ARMOURY KNOWN AS PORT AND CUSTOMS OFFICE
.2. BELFRY

Location: Machilipatnam (Bandar)

Brief History:
This fort is connected with the early struggles of the Dutch, the French and the British in India and contains some of the last memorials of the former greatness ofMachilipatam. As described by Capt. Albert Harvey in his Ten Years in India the fort had an Arsenal which was the entrepot of stores supplied to the troops in the Hyderabad and Nagpur subsidiary forces, as well as the whole of the Northern division of the Army. It contained necessaries of every description and was kept in first rate order by the Commissariat and the many warrant officers attached to the establishment. The curious old records kept in it gave an idea of how things were managed in those times. The Dutch magazine and some of the old European barracks passed into private hands. The old hospital, which is now roofless, is said to belong to the Nizam. The Armoury, which is used as Customs and Port Office, consists of a quadrangular enclosure with rooms and godowns built round it, a large gateway. The enclosure is divided into two open courts by a narrow block of buildings in the center. In 1621 English factories at Bantam attempted to open a trade with a Palikat, but were opposed by the Dutch. In the following year, however, they succeeded in establishing a trade atMachilipatam. In 1628 the English were driven fromMachilipatam by the oppression of the native Governors, but five years subsequently the place was established as a factory through a Firman of the Nizam of Golkonda.

In 1689, owing to misunderstanding between the English and the great Mughal, the latter seized the factories atMachilipatam and Vijayapatnam. In the following year an imperial Firman permitted the Company to re-settle in the district, and the following year Kowle for the Madras settlement, including the English factories of Machilipatam, Madapalam, Vijayapatam, etc., within the territories of the Golkonda country, was granted, which emanated from Zulfakar Khan, the Mughal General in the Deccan.

The Northern Sarkars were obtained by the French in 1753, and remained in their possession till 1759, when they were transferred to the East India Company, to whom they were finally ceded in 1765.

The English built the fort atMachilipatam, but the greater part of the ramparts have, within recent years, been entirely leveled. It was designed by Sir. Charles. Trevelyan to level the walls, and layout boulevards and a people's park, but this idea was frustrated by the Cyclone of 1864 that carried off some 30,000 souls and depopulated the fort.

Monument No: 8

Monument Name: DUTCH CEMETERY

Location: Machilipatnam (Bandar)

Brief History:
The Dutch were the first European settlers inMachilipatam, but the old Dutch burial ground at this place is all that remains to tell of their connection with the country. The cemetery consists of massive dressed and polished stone of hard schist, finely carved with inscriptions of obsolete Dutch script assignable to 16th - 18th centuries AD. The Dutch must have had a trained stone mason, for almost every stone bears a coat of arms executed with considerable skill. A few tombs were identified as the tombs of Dutch merchants and immigrants as follows:

1.Catharine VanDen Briel of Amsterdam and John Kruyf of Touanan,Jjunior merchants in the service of the Hon. Comp

2. Miss Jane Bolwerk, wife of the merchant, second in charge of the Factory here, Mr. John Huysman.

3. Miss Elizebeth Van Erpecum, wife of the Junior merchant and warehousekeeper of Mr. Marten Van Den Briel

4. Mrs. Maria Wilhelmina Gambier, late wife of the Hon. Mr. Gosewyn, Mayor, Senior merchant.

5. Hon. Mr. James Corbesier, native of Utrecht, Senior merchant, and his late wife Mrs. Margaret Booms of Amsterdam

6. Mr. Adrien Blockeel of Issendyck, Chief of the factory at Daetcherom

7. Mrs Elizabeth Frontenius, native of Pulicat

8. Mr. William Frontenius, native of Pulicat

9. Mr. James Corbesier Delonge, native of Daetcheron

Monument No: 9

Monument Name: ROCK-CUT CAVE TEMPLES ON THE HILL

Location: Mogalrazapuram

Brief History:
This is excavated on the southern face of the hillock, which originally belonged to the old Mogulrajapuram village. Now it forms a part of Vijayawada. These cave temples face the main highway that passes through Governorpet.

ROCK-CUT CAVE NO.1

The cave abruptly starts with a triple passage formed by two massive pillars in the center. The cornice running over them carries dwarfish ganas with raised up hands. On the backside there are representation of garland bearers and a row of geese. At the bottom of the pillar towards left there is a representation of a Purnaghata. With the three shrines in the back wall, the sanctuary may be said to have been dedicated to Trimurti. The excavation is attributed to the Visnukundin kings who ruled Vengi between 4th and 5th century AD

ROCK-CUT CAVE NO.2

This is the most famous of the Mogalrajapuram group under the name Nataraja cave. It faces the road that connects the Madras-Calcutta National Highway and Suryaraopet of Vijayawada town. The excavation shows an open rectangular courtyard with two triangular walls on either side. The cave has a raised up ornamental plinth with a central balustrade. On the back wall of the cave there are three shrines with a big common portico in front. The roof is supported by two massive pillars in the center near the entrance. On either side there are two niches in which horned Dvarapalas stand gracefully. A drooping cornice running over the pillars contains three kudus having human faces inside. The top portion of the façade has a mutilated figure of Nataraja over a dwarf representing 'Ignorance'.

ROCK-CUT CAVE NO.3

This lies on the southern slope of a bigger hill north of the old Mogalrajapuram village. The excavation on one side contains three reliefs of the Hindu Trinity in a nich. Next to the nich, there is a representation of a warrior, with a drawn sword roughly carved on the surface of the rock and slightly away there is an inscription in Telugu Characters. Both refer to the stabbing of an individual in 9th century AD. The second part of the cave consists of a rock cut hall, with a triple passage formed by two pillars. The cornice over the pillars contains the decoration of kudu arches. To the back wall of the cave, there is a shrine containing a panel in which the figure of Durga is shown in relief.

ROCK-CUT CAVE NO.4

This is situated half up the bigger hill west of Cave No. 3. It is provided with narrow flight of steps. It is a simple cave with two pillars at the entrance. The cornice over the pillars bears miniature kudu decorations. The shrine chamber provided at the back wall has a spacious portico. The landing provided at the end of the flight of step gives a panoramic view of the village and its extent.

ROCK-CUT CAVE NO.5

This is situated halfway up the hill west of Cave No.4 on the same hill. As we enter the excavation shows a wide-open court in front. To the back wall of the cave, there are three square shrines with pedestals for deities. The three possibly meant for the Hindu Trinity. The two pillars divide the cave into three openings. The beam running over the pillars has a drooping projection. It is devoid of Kudu decoration usually found in other caves. The excavation is associated withVishnukundins who ruled Vengi between 4th and 5th century AD.

Monument No:10

Monument Name: ANCIENT SITE AND REMAINS

Location: Munagacherla

Brief History:
The surface collections and the trial digs at the site have yielded pottery of black, red, black and red wares of early historical period similar to those found at Nagarjunakonda and Amaravati sites. They are of storage jars, vases, and pots of different sizes. Some of the pot shreds contain decorations at the rim portion. The other antiquities found at the site include beads of jasper and other semi precious stones of various shapes. The site is also containing Grey ware of medieval date and m ulticolour glass bangles of late medieval date. No evidence of bricks at the site is a special. The above finds indicate that the site was in continues occupation from 3rd to 16th century AD

Monument No:11

Monument Name:FOUR PILLARS IN THE RUINED MANDAPAM

Location: Vijayawada

Brief History:
This four-pillared mandapa, originally pertaining to Mallesvarasvami temple compound at the foot of the Indrakila hill, is now reconstructed near Akkanna cave. This mandapa has exquisitely carved pillars with corbels and lintels surmounted. All round the plinth of the mandapa on its exterior face there are beautiful sculptures depicting stories from the Puranas. The representations of mithunas in between Puranic scenes are noteworthy. These four artistic pillars of the mandapa contain 43 valuable records, datable to 12th-13 centuries AD. One of these refers to a grant by a brother-in-law of the famous Kakatiya king Ganapathi Deva.

Monument No:12

Monument Name: INSCRIBED PILLAR AND SLAB IN MALLESVARASVAMI TEMPLE

Location: Vijayawada

Brief History:
The temple of Mallesvara, situated at the foot of the Indrakila hill at Vijayawada, is a shrine of hoary antiquity. The pillars of this temple contain a number of inscriptions in Telugu language and script which supply us some interesting accounts of the temple and the endowments made to it as well as to the shrine of Papavinasa, by the rulers of this locality from 9th to 16th centuries. Of these the oldest and most important are the inscriptions of the Eastern Chalukyan kings Yudhamalla I (circa A.D. 890) and his grandson Yuddhamalla II.

INSCRIBED PILLARS IN THE MALLESVARASVAMI TEMPLE:

PILLAR-I: This pillar contains seven inscriptions ranging in date from A.D 1131 TO 1276. The earliest of these belongs to the reign of the Telugu chief, Gonturu Nagadeva who describes himself as a Pallava chief and Lord of Kanchipura. The inscription records the gift made by him of the village of Viravalli near Uyyuru to God Mallesvara-mahadeva at Bejavade. Another record on this pillar bearing the data A.D. 1267 mentions the Koppula chief Proli Nayudu who, along with several members of his family, is stated to have made gifts of some lamps in the same temple. The other inscriptions record some benefactions by some private individuals.

PILLAR II: The pillar contains three inscriptions of which two are dated A.D. 1150 and A.D 1255. The date of the third is damaged. All the three record gifts of lamps in the temple. The first record of Saka 1072 mentions Bayapadeva Maharajulu of Peda Vegi as donor.

PILLAR III: The pillar bears two inscriptions both recording benefactions by private individuals. One of them is dated A.D. 1437 and registers the gift of certain lands made to god Papavinasa-deva by Siramaya, a dancing girl attached to the temple of Mallesvarasvamin.

PILLAR IV: The only inscription on this pillar records the construction of the Nandimandapa in front of God Mallesvara by the mercantile community, the Telikiveguru, who are distinguished by a number of birudas. It is dated A.D. 1409.

PILLAR V: The inscription engraved on this states that Chola-Patra, the elder brother of Siva-mahapatra and the son of Dasa-mahanti had the shrine of Kesavanatha whitewashed with chunam. A Telugu verse states that he installed an image of Siva at Moturipuri. The record is undated.

PILLAR VI: This pillar contains one inscription stating that in A.D. 1459 a certain Srigiribhakta, son of a dancing girl of the Mallesvara temple, installed the image of Vinayaka to the south of the Mallesvara temple.

PILLAR VII: This pillar contains the famous Bezwada pillar inscription of Yuddhamalla. The two oldest inscriptions on this pillar belong to the reign of the Eastern Chalukya king Yuddhamalla I (c. A.D. 890) and his grandson Yuddhamalla II respectively. The earlier relates to the construction at Bezwada of a temple of Kartikeya and a matha by Yuddhamalla described as the Salki king. The second inscription states that another Yuddhamalla, evidently the former's grandson, added a tower to the temple built by his grandfather Mallaparaja (Yuddhamalla I). Both the inscriptions are in Telugu verse and provide early specimens of Telugu versification prior to Nannaya-Bhatta, the author of the oldest Telugu work extant (11th century A.D.). Two other inscriptions on this stone pillar are of later date. One of these is a Tamil inscription dated in the 41st year of reign of the Imperial Chola king Kulottunga Chola.

PILLAR VIII: This pillar contains two inscriptions of which one is dated A.D. 1426 and the other A.D. 1553. Both are records issued by the mercantile corporation the Teliki-vevuru. The former commemorates their construction of the mukha-mandapa in front of the gopura. The second records an agreement among the members of the same community to observe certain marriage customs.

PILLAR IX: This pillar contains four inscriptions ranging in date from Saka 1055 to Saka 1163 and record certain benefactions to the temple by private individuals.

PILLAR X: This pillar contains an inscription of Krishnadevaraya of Vijayanagara dated in the year Yuva (A.D. 1515). It refers to an edict set up under the orders of the king by Rayasam Kondamarusayya with reference to the Kondapalli and Kondavidu simas.

ON A MUTILATED SLAB DUG UP IN THE COURTYARD OF THE TEMPLE: This inscription belongs to the reign of Palla-Keta-Bhupala and records an endowment by him. The date of the inscription is lost. On a stone formerly built into the roof of the Vignesvara shrine, now in the store-room: This stone contains five inscriptions of which four bear dates, Saka 1135, 1157, 1191 and 1209. The date of the fifth is lost. The first of the above inscriptions records a donation by Kandradi Bhima Raja.

Monument No:13

Monument Name:KIRATARJUNA PILLAR ON THE INDRAKILA HILL

Location: Vijayawada

Brief History:
This pillar once on the top of the Indrakila hill is now erected near the Akanna Cave. This red stone pillar contains an inscription datable to 9th century AD. Which is engraved on its two sides. The two other sides of the pillar as also portions of the written faces contain sculptured scenes which illustrate story of Kiratarjuniya of the Mahabharata in which Arjuna is said to have fought with Siva disguised as a hunter and after a severe hand-to-hand contest Arjuna obtained the weapon Pasupatha from Lord Siva. The interesting inscription has to be red from bottom to top. It registers the setting up of the pillar by a certain Trikotiboyi of Pechche (va) da. It begins with a Sanskrit verse, which consists of a string of synonyms of Arjuna. Then follow a long prose passage in Sanskrit, an imprecatory verse and the name of the writer Vijayacharya in archaic Telugu characters of about 9th century AD.

Monument No:14

Monument Name:TWO ROCK-CUT CAVE TEMPLES ON THE INDRAKILA HILL KNOWN AS AKKANNA MADANNA CAVES CONSISTING OF
(1) A TWO CELLED SHRINE FACING THE EAST AND
(2) A TRIPLE CELLED TEMPLE WITH A PILLARED HALL INFRONT AND LINGA IN THE MIDDLE CELL

Location: Vijayawada

Brief History:
Andhra Pradesh has early examples of cut-out and cut-in cave temples and halls dedicated to Hindu Gods and Goddesses, belonging to Vishnukundins and Eastern Chalukyas that is 5th to 8th centuries AD like their Buddhist counterparts. The concentration is mostly in the Vijayawada town, the commercial metropolis of Andhra Pradesh.

At the southeast foot of the Indrakilla hill an offshoot of Eastern Ghat containing the famous pilgrimage temple of Kanagadurga, one can see the remains of an extensively cut-out triple shrines, known locally as Akanna-Madanna caves or mandapas, deserve specific mention. It is of the usual ground plan with a triple rear cells and a common pillared verandah in front. There is absence of ornamental moulding or carvings in these three shrines, but the pillars are entirely octagonal in section. The pillar types with octagonal section are surely non-Pallava and it thus be apparent that despite of its ground plan, which falls within the well known Pallava specimens, the actual rock-excavation might not have been inspired by any Pallava king but may be of local patronage. Much of the details - architectural and sculptural, if any, that were there before suffered heavy damage at the severity of nature and in addition the nearby dwellers contributed their share in spoiling the surroundings, till the Survey protected them. Yet the group is unique and reaches high among the earlier excavations. Besides the above lower cave shrines, there is yet another cave temple unit towards north on the same hill, in somewhat higher levels of the hill. This cave temple seems to be dedicated to the trinity- Brahma, Vishnu and Siva.