The Shishunaga dynasty is believed to have been the third ruling dynasty of Magadha, a kingdom in ancient India. But according to the Puranas, this dynasty is the second ruling dynasty of Magadha, which succeeded the Barhadratha dynasty.
Shishunaga, the founder of this dynasty was initially an amatya (minister) of the last Haryanka dynasty ruler Nagadasaka and ascended to the thone after a popular rebellion in c. 413 BCE. The capital of this dynasty initially was Rajagriha, but later shifted to Pataliputra, near the present day Patna during the reign of Kakavarna. According to tradition, Kakavarna was succeeded by his ten sons. This dynasty was succeeded by the Nanda dynasty in c.345 BCE.
Shishunaga (also called King Sisunaka) was the founder of this dynasty, known as the Shishunaga or Shaishunaga dynasty. He established the Magadha empire in 413 BCE. This empire, with its original capital in Rajgriha, later shifted to Pataliputra (both currently in the Indianstate of Bihar). Buddhist sources also indicate that he had a secondary capital at Vaishali, formerly the capital of the Vajjimahajanapada, until it was conquered by Magadha. The Shishunaga dynasty in its time was the rulers of one of the largest empires of the Indian subcontinent.
According to tradition, ten sons of Kalashoka ruled simultaneously. The Mahabodhivamsa states their names as Bhadrasena, Korandavarna, Mangura, Sarvanjaha, Jalika, Ubhaka, Sanjaya, Koravya, Nandivardhana and Panchamaka. Only one of them mentioned in the Puranic lists, Nandivardhana. Nandivardhana or Mahanandin was probably the last ruler of this dynasty, his empire was inherited by his illegitimate son Mahapadma Nanda.