Saturday, August 29, 2009

The Nanda Dynasty-The fourth dynasty of Magadha

The Nanda Dynasty
From I504 to 1604 A.Y. : : From 1634 to 1534 B.C. Total No. of years = 100.
1. Mahapadma otherwise known as Nanda, an illegitimate son of Mahanandin, the last of the kings of Saisunaga dynasty, ruled Magadha for 88 years from 1504 to 1592 A.Y., 1634 to 1546 B.C.
2. Sumalya and his seven brothers, the sons of Nanda, ruled Magadha jointly for a total period of 12 years from 1592 to 1604 A.Y, or 1546 to 1534 B.C.
According to the Puranas, the founder of this dynasty, Mahapadma Nanda is said to be the son of Mahanandin, the last of the Sisunaga family, born to a Sudra woman married by him and he is said to have assumed the surname of Nanda. Like Parasurama, he is said to have annihilated all the Kshatriyas of his time and became the mightiest and the most powerful of all the kings of Aryavartha. He had eight sons accordingto Puranic accounts, the eldest of whom Sumalya ascended the throne in succession of his father, along with the rest of his brothers according to their seniority and they ruled the country for a total period of 12 years, They were put to death by a brahmin named Chanakya, surnamed Kautilya (Vishnugupta), who thereupon placed an illegitimate son of Mahapadma, by name Chandragupta, on the throne of Magadha.
According to Buddhistic accounts, Mahapadma is known as Dhana Nanda, in consequence of his avaricious habit in hoarding up wealth. It is said that levying taxes on skins, Gums, trees, stones etc., he hoarded up money to the extent of eighty Kotis, and buries up in the bed of the Ganges. Diverting the main stream for a time by an anicut or dam thrown across the Ganges, and making a large hole in a rock in the bed of the river sufficient to contain the money, he deposited his wealth in the rock, and sealed it up with molten lead. The river was then restored to its natural course and his treasure was secured thus in a very strong place. During his life time, he continued to hoard up and to deposit the collections from time to time under the bed of the river. He and his eight sons known as the nine Nandas were put to death by the Brahmin Chanakya, surnamed Kautilya, who hated him (for his maladministration), and who took possession of the wealth in the bed of the Ganges.
All the Hindu accounts (Vishnu Purana, Bhagavata Purana, Vayu Purana, Matysa Purana, Brahmanda Purana, Kaliyuga Raja Vrittanta) are unanimous in giving to these nine Nandas a total period of 100 years for their reign.
It will be clear from the accounts in the above various important Puranas, which are practically identical with one another, that the founder of this Dynasty was Mahapadma, well-known otherwise as Dhana Nanda, that he was the son of Mahanandin, the last of the Saisunaga Dynasty, that he was born to that king from a Sudra wife, that he was most avaricious and powerful, that he extirpated the Kshatriya rulers of his time like a second Parasurama, the destroyer of the Kshatriyas in the olden times,Tretaayuga, that he subjugated the different lines of Kings of the Solar and Lunar dynasties who began to rule in the various parts of Northern India from the time of the Mahabharata War commencing from 1 A.Y., corresponding to the coronation of Yudhistira in the year 3138 B. C., that he became a paramount king and Emperor of the whole of India between the Himalaya and the Vindhya mountains, by putting an end to the ancient families of kings, such as Aikshvakus, Panchalas, Kauravyas, Haihayas, Kalakas,Ekalingas, Surasenas, aithilas etc., who ceased to rule as a seperate dynasty ever since that time; that he ruled the kingdom under one umbrella for a period of 88 years; that his 8 sons jointly ruled the kingdom for a short period of 12 years, that these nine Nandas, including the father and his eight sons ruled Magadha altogether for a total period of 100 years from 1504 to l604 A.Y., corresponi ding to 1634 to 1534 B.C., that these Nandas were extirpated by the Brahmin Chanakya, well known as "Kautilya" on account of his crooked and Machiavelian policy, and that he placed his (Mahapadmanda’s) protege Chandragupta, an illeginiate son of Mahapadma Nanda by his Sudra wife ‘Mura' on the throne of his father.
The account given of these nine Nandas in the various puranas is sufficiently corroborated by the various Jain and Buddhistic accounts snch as Jaimini Bharata, Mahavira’s life, Parisishtaparva, Mahavamsa, Dipavamsa and Asokavadana, though, the Buddhistic Mahavamsa dubs the last of these nine Nandas only by the name of Dhana. All these records of the Jains and the Buddhists, though hopelessly muddled and full of contradictory stories, are uniform in extending the duration of the Nanda Dynasty to 155 years. While such is the case, it is really a great pity that Mr. Vincent. A. Smith should have chosen to give these nine Nandas a total period of only 45 years for their reigns, and alas! these European scholars, who accuse the Indians for want of their historical accuracy, should supply the dates for the ancient periods of Indian History purely out of their fertile imaginations and pre—conceived notions.
Thus ends the Nanda Dynasty.

1 comment:

  1. But why not these facts are included in the present Indian history being taught? These must be added for our own good although some elements may not agree.