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Discovery of Kadamba Inscription in Goa

Why is it in the news?

  • The 10th-century Kadamba inscription was recently discovered in the Mahadeva temple at Cacoda in southern Goa.

 (Kadamba Inscription)

More about the news

  • The inscription is written in both Kannada and Nagari
  • It sheds light on the Kadamba period in Goa, beginning with the auspicious word ‘Swasthi Shri’ (Be it well).
  • The stone inscription was found between the temples of Mahadev and Sateri-Betal at Cacoda.
  • The inscription records that Talara Nevayya’s son, Gundayya, fulfilled his father’s desire by capturing a gopura of the port of Goa, fighting and dying in the process.
  • Gundayya’s heroic act is commemorated with the inscription erected by his father in the Mahadev temple at Cacoda.
  • The epigraph is in the literary style of the Talangre inscription of Jayasimha I from the same period.


Historical Narrative

  • The Kadambas of Goa were subordinates of the Chalukyas of Kalyana.
  • Kadamba Shasthadeva, appointed as Mahamandaleshwara by Chalukyan emperor Tailapa II, played a crucial role in overthrowing the Rashtrakutas.
  • In 960 A.D., Shasthadeva conquered Chandavara city and the port of Gopakapattana (present-day Goa).
  • Gundayya, Talara Nevayya’s son, participated in the battle for Goa’s port and won it at the cost of his life.


Socio-cultural Importance

  • Cacora village, where the inscription was found, is connected to navigable waterways leading to the Upper Ghat region through the ancient Diggi ghat route.
  • Cacoda, now a census town in Goa, hosts the Mahadev temple and other deities, reflecting its cultural significance.
  • The inscription highlights the historical and socio-cultural importance of the Kadamba period in Goa.


About Kadambas Dynasty

EstablishmentThe Kadambas, an ancient Karnataka royal dynasty, were founded around 345 A D by Mayurasharma.
Territorial ControlThey controlled northern Karnataka and the Konkan region, coexisting with the Western Ganga Dynasty.
Historical SourcesMajor historical sources include inscriptions like Talagunda, Gundanur, Chandravalli, Halasi, and Halmidi in Sanskrit and Kannada.
Architecture– Exhibited unique features inspired by Chalukyan and Pallava styles.
– Contributed to the later Chalukya-Hoysala style.
– The distinctive Kadamba Shikara adopted in Hoysala temples at Doddagaddavalli and Mahakuta in Hampi.
– Erected the Madhukeshwara (Lord Shiva) temple at Banavasi.
Religion– Adhered to Vedic Hinduism.
– Mayurasharma, the founder, was a Brahmin, but heirs changed their surname to Varma to signify Kshatriya rank.
– Horse sacrifice (Ashwamedha) performed by several Kadamba monarchs.
Language– Played a crucial role in developing Kannada as a language of inscriptions.
– Main sources of Kadamba history: Inscriptions in Sanskrit and Kannada.
Administration– Referred to themselves as Dharma Maharajas.
– Various administrative roles: Prime Minister, Council Secretary, Scholarly Elders, Physician, etc.
– Provinces (Mandalas) and districts (Vishayas) used for kingdom partition.
Economy– Kingdom divided into nine Vishayas, with Mahagramas (Taluk) and Dashagramas (Hobli) under a Vishaya.
– Imposed various taxes: land tax, sales tax, professional charges on traders.
Society– Adhered to the caste system, with Brahmins and Kshatriyas at the top.
– Erected memorial stones (hero stones) to honour deceased heroes, a unique feature of medieval Indian society.

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