Talk:Chola dynasty

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Intention to Change the Title of this Article from Chola Dynasty to 'Chola Empire':[edit]

To come straight to the point.. I have this book by Prof. K.A.Nilakanta Sastri which is called 'A History of South India : from Pre-historic Times to the Fall of Vijayanagar', it is printed by the Oxford University Press and its ISBN No. 'seems to be' 019 560686-8 (followed by another number below the ISBN lines which is 9 780195606867. The book is in paper back. and the original print is probably 1875 with the current edition being the Twenty first (with Introduction) 2003.

In this book on page on page xxiii - the following text appears which I am repeating to you verbatim:

"""To a large extent, however, the Chola state far more out weighted all other South Indian kingdoms both in territorial and maritime control and stable political structures, and lasted much longer as a regional power (four hundred years) than any of them, except that of Vijayanagar and its description as an empire is more justifiable and valid from several points of view."""

On the basis of the above text, I want to request concerned Administrators that they may like to change the title of this article from CHOLA DYNASTY to "CHOLA EMPIRE". Let me know your response.

Srirangam99 (talk) 11:19, 28 May 2009 (UTC)

I completely agree! (Dewan 12:51, 17 August 2009 (UTC))


I agree with your idea.But isn't the Pandiyan empire that survived for a long time.I thing that Pandiyas were the last Tamil monarch to perish (Arun1paladin (talk) 21:21, 24 March 2010 (UTC)arun1paladin)

Article issues[edit]

I disagree with the move to 'Chola Empire', and support the title 'Chola dynasty'. This isn't to say that the Cholas never had an empire - they definitely. However, this article covers the entire dynasty from the Early Cholas onwards, and they were clearly not an empire at that time. If you want an article on the Chola Empire, it'd have to be about the Imperial Cholas alone. Such an article would be worth writing, but it would have to be a separate article, which could well be a sub-article of this one.

This article also has a number of issues - as it currently stands, it is unlikely to survive Featured Article Review. There are issues with sourcing - for example, a number of recent edits have added claims to sourced sentences, with the result that the footnotes no longer support the claims. It's only a matter of time before this article is nominated for a review, and I propose to work on it to make sure it continues to meet Featured Article standards. -- Arvind (talk) 18:42, 29 October 2009 (UTC)

Why not revert it back to where it was ? Taprobanus (talk) 05:23, 30 October 2009 (UTC)

(unindent) I've removed the list of names from the introduction. I'd urge editors to read WP:LEAD before reinstating it. Information in the lead must be accessible, as WP:LEAD repeatedly emphasises, and it should not be over-specific. A long list of names, giving no context as to why those rulers are important, does not meet these requirements. It is not accessible or intelligible to a non-specialist who has no idea who all these people were, and it is over-specific - we need to be giving general information about the dynasty, not listing its rulers. Second, the relative emphasis given to material in the lead should reflect its relative importance to the subject according to reliable sources. No source I am acquainted with treats the names of the rulers as being of such high significance. Their accomplishments are important, and those are covered in some detail in the second paragraph of the lead, but dumping an ever-increasing list of names in there clearly conflicts with this guideline. -- Arvind (talk) 15:12, 30 October 2009 (UTC)

  • Some notes:
    • I agree in part with Taprobanus' suggestion. A comparison of the current version with this to remove "text inserts" before references might be a good idea.
    • The Etymology of Chola section needs to go. It's minimally sourced and out of place. The two lines that are sourced should be added to the origins context after rewriting to provide context (and also checking the refs).
    • In popular culture section needs to go.
    • Religion section needs to be trimmed and edited. I'd suggest reverting back to the May 17, 2006 version for this section and then expanding if needed.
    • Notes and references need to be linked, but this should probably wait until some of the excess adds have been trimmed
    • Some POV also seems to have crept into the article. Mentions of Sanskrit and Brahmins have been removed
    • Reference padding to the extreme. I don't understand this, but there are too many sentences with more than two notes attached.
  • These are some issues I've noticed so far. In addition, there's also a feeling of disjointedness in some areas. Other opinions? cheers. -SpacemanSpiff 00:36, 31 October 2009 (UTC)
I think going back to that version, and then reviewing all changes made since then and re-introducing those which make sense would be a good way forward. I'm not sure it'll be uncontroversial, though, so we should probably wait for more comments. -- Arvind (talk) 12:55, 2 November 2009 (UTC)
Agree Taprobanus (talk) 21:17, 2 November 2009 (UTC)
At the same time, I would request that those changes made after mediation by Sebastian, which was accepted by both me and another user Dinesh Kannambadi be retained which I am certain only according to accepted rules and practices in Wikipedia. While recommending changes to the articles, it may kindly be kept in mind that edits or contributes if any, by users including me HAVE INDEED BEEN MADE using ONLY reliable sources such as books by K.A.Nilakanta Sastri, the noted historian who has been quoted widely in almost all history pages pertaining to South India and its rulers. The changes proposed, if any may kindly be discussed thoroughly because limited discussion and making changes wholesale without prior discussion would not amount to insulting and bullying new users which was a practice by some established users with regard to my contributions, but this time it would indeed be dishonouring and disrespecting the noble act of neutral arbitration done by user Sebastian. If need be Mr. Sebastian also will need to be involved. (I do not deny that at times my formatting or manner of contributing is not perfect, all I would say regarding this is that guidance from seniors at any point of time is always welcome from my point of view).

For starters, I very much object to the removal of notable kings of the Cholas, which was a list duly approved by user, Arbitrator Sebastian. For reference the archives of the goings on on this talk page may kindly be referred to. With permission, I would like to restore that particular section.

Thanks. In the meanwhile please see this as the justification.

Issue list from Srirangam99
  1. Should Aditya I, Parantaka I, Rajaraja Chola I, Rajendra Chola I, Rajadhiraja Chola, Virarajendra Chola be listed?

Srirangam99 (talk) 05:57, 4 November 2009 (UTC)

Srirangam99, as Arvind already explained to you adding every king's name in the lead is not acceptable. This is a Featured Article and needs to meet the respective criteria. Having a laundry list or a sea of blue in the lead is plain distracting, impractical and of no value to the reader of the article. The choice of which of the kings to include can be discussed, but having more than three to four is incorrect. In addition, the article no longer meets some of the Featured Article criteria and if an editor were to nominate it in its current form, it is a prime candidate for delisting. Please do not take this personally, no one is "dishonouring" your contributions, but there are many valid requirements for articles, and they have to be adhered to. -SpacemanSpiff 06:09, 4 November 2009 (UTC)
Spaceman Sir, thank you for being so prompt in replying. My main doubt was that when I tried to contribute, I was always told and instructed to quote from reliable sources. I was also challenged to quote the book name, its writer, publisher, ISBN no. etc. which is what I have done with most of my contributions, at least the last 50-odd contributions of mine have been from books written by Mr. K.A.Nilakanta Sastri. There was also discouraging attitude towards my quoting from the website: www.whatsindia.com/south_indian_inscriptions but I showed to other users and indeed the neutral arbitrator Sebastian Helm that this website contains findings of eminent archaeologists who have worked for the Archaeological Survey of India for deciphering contents of inscriptions left by ancient South Indian kings, among others, and whose findings have been archived in books, but for purposes of easy access, many of those findings (if not all) have been copied on to that website and hence the material available therein HAS TO BE TREATED as that of the ASI, Govt. of India and not something independent or own view or original research by people associated or affiliated with a website.

Can I have your views as to whether the data or material quoted from history books by K.A.N.Sastri or material accessed from ASI archives quoted in www.whatsindia.com/south_indian_inscriptions, also comes under the category of "material no longer meeting some of the FA criteria"?

Thanks.

Srirangam99 (talk) 06:34, 4 November 2009 (UTC)

WhatisIndia.com is in my opinion not a reliable source. They may do what you say they do, but there is no independent verification of that they are reliable. There are no cites on gscholar, nothing on gnews, two book cites on gbooks. The site itself doesn't shed much light except for their claims (which could very well be true). However, Wikipedia articles need verifiability and this site fails that. As for the Sastri books, given that he's a notable historian, references from them will be acceptable as long as the necessary details - Title, ISBN, publisher, page no etc are provided and the text is suitably paraphrased and not copied from the books. However, note that not all content from the book is suitable for the article. Content additions have to be germane to the topic of the Chola dynasty and summary style, not going into excess detail. -SpacemanSpiff 07:00, 4 November 2009 (UTC)

Spaceman Sir, pls. see this... in fact it is extract of the first 4 paras of the introductory page of http://www.whatisindia.com/inscriptions.html

Indian Inscriptions
Professor Hultzsch from the latter part of 1886 when he was appointed Epigraphist to the Government of Madras started a systematic collection of Inscriptions of Southern India. The Publication of these documents with texts and translations was taken up simultaneously and the following fascicule of South Indian Inscriptions were issued between the years 1886 and 1903. They included 321 records edited critically and supplied all the material that may be practically necessary for constructing the rough outlines of Chola and Pallava history.
In the year 1909, the later Mr. V. Venkayya, M.A., Rai Bahadur, Epigraphist to the Government of India, volunteered his services to continue the work of Professor Hultzsch.
In these pages, we present these publications as printed by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI). This work has taken an enormous amount of energy, time, and money to digitize. Most importantly, these volumes were made possible by the dedication of our staff Mr. Ganesh Kumar and later by Messers Prabhu and Selvam.
We hope that the availability of these inscriptions will spur research into South Indian history.

Sir, you can judge for yourself.

Thanks.

Srirangam99 (talk) 07:50, 4 November 2009 (UTC)

Srirangam, there are two different issues which you shouldn't conflate:
First, all additions must come from reliable sources, as Sebastian Helm told you. That is perfectly correct, and Nilakanta Sastri's books are definitely reliable sources. His books are old, however, and we need to read them in the light of more recent scholarly research - a very good example is Burton Stein's work on state formation in South India. So yes, we can and should refer to Nilakanta Sastri, but his views aren't the be-all and end-all.
Second, and as important, not everything that is in a reliable source is worth adding. Nilakantha Sastri wrote a book that was several hundred pages long - we don't have space in this article to include everything he says. As a result, this article has to be written in summary style. The problem with the list of kings in the lead isn't that it's not reliably sourced - it's that it doesn't fit with this article being in a summary style, and that it ends up inserting a long list into the introduction a list, which doesn't help people who know nothing about the Cholas (and remember that the vast majority of people who use Wikipedia would not even have heard of the Cholas before they read this article).
On the ASI publications, the original text of inscriptions are primary sources. Primary sources are fine for experts writing academic articles, but on Wikipedia, the rules discourage us from using primary sources. We are, instead, supposed to write our articles with reference to the views of scholars who've read and interpreted the primary sources - such as Nilakanta Sastri, Burton Stein and the others quoted in this article -- Arvind (talk) 14:27, 4 November 2009 (UTC)
Arvind, what you say is perfectly correct and understandable. But what I would like to say is that while www.whatsindia.com does contain the literal translations of the original sources, they also have with every volume of the inscriptions (I think they have around 26 to 30 volumes of inscriptions) the introductory portion which contains the summary which has been suitably paraphrased and not blindly copied by me while contributing to those articles.
If you have a good look at the inscription volumes many of them, on the one hand, do contain, apart from the exact reading of what a particular inscription, the broader insight into the actions, attitude and administration of that regime or king.
For example an important inscription of Kulottunga III in Vol. 24 has reading of the slab inscription from Srirangam Temple, that the king considers the Lord of that Temple along with the Chidambaram Natarajar (Siva) as the "Tutelary Deity" of the Cholas. That is entirely in keeping with the Velachery copper plate issued by the third Chola King Parantaka I, who repeated his father Aditya I's order that the Chidambaram Nataraja and and Rangaathaswami Temple of Srirangam are considered as the Kuladhanams of the Chola kings. The scholars working for the ASI have done both the literal translation of the specific inscription (No. 133) and also given their summary as to what it broadly means about the Cholas (I may tell you Arvind, is that what the two records (ordainment by Aditya I faithfully carried out in the Velachery copper edict of his son Parantaka I (902-956 AD) and one by a much later Chola king ruling 200 years after Parantaka I, i.e. Kulottunga III (1175-1218 AD) basically proclaim the same thing: that the Chidambaram Natarajar Temple (Periya Koil or Big Temple in Shaiva parlance) and the Sri Ranganathaswami Temple, Srirangam (the Periya Koil in Vaishnava parlance) were considered by the Chola kings to be their Kuladhanams (that of course has a broader meaning, Tutelary deity is of course one belonging to the family, but they called it Tutelary property, meaning the upkeep of which will be passed on from generation to generation, meaning from one king to his successor) is that Arvind, it belies completely the claim (made in the book by Suryanath Kamath about the Cholas being (only) devout Saivites and (hence) persecutor of Vaishnavites (particularly Saint Ramanuja - I will go on to say that Suryanath Kamath's book is the only book sticking to this contrary version - his book is also the only one that also claims that Chalukya King Satyashraya defeated in war and chased Rajendra Chola I into the Chola country, I have read scores of books on history, but none back this "version" or interpretation of history - but that is another point).... What I mean to convey Arvind is that I have made these kind of contributions which of course do not stick to the stereo-type, like you say Nilakanta Sastri is not the be all or end all, I too think the same and hence, also sourced and used material from other reliable and scholarly sources only. To establish my point, I hereby carry out the extract (not of the inscription but of the accompanying summary made by ASI scholars) of Inscription No. 133 at the Srirangam Temple, issued by King Kulottunga III, that gives an entirely new dimension to the Chola saga:
"There are nineteen inscriptions (Nos. 132-150) assignable to the reign of Kulottunga III. No. 133 among them, though not dated in his reign records that the various works of construction including Magadesam alias Adaiyavalaindan-tirumaligai and the worship in the temple described as the tutelary property (kuladhanam) of the king were under the protection of Tayilum Nallan alias Kulottungasola-Vanakovaraiyar. Though the deity of the temple is not referred to there is nothing to prevent us from identifying the temple with that of Ranganathasvami temple. On the basis of the negative evidences that both the king and the officer had a learning towards Saivism and that they are not known to have been such ardent Vaishnava devotees as to call the Srirangam temple as their kuladhanam it has been surmised that the slabs bearing this inscription probably belonged to some portion of the prakara wall of the neighboring Jambukesavara temple and that they were inscribed later their present position[10].
Now that we know that the temple enjoyed the patronage of Chola Parantaka I who is stated to have gilded the vimana of the Ranganathaswami temple[11] as stated in his Velacheri copper plate record, it is quite proper to state that both the Saivite Periyakoyil at Chidambaram and the Vaishnavite periyakoyil at Srirangam were considered by the Cholas as a whole as their kuladhanam. As for Adaiyavalaindan Tiirumaligai (ch-churru) it is quite a well-known name of a prakara in the temple.[12]
Here the scholars have used expressions like "us" or "Now that we know" or "it is quite proper to state that", meaning that they being scholars have made deeper studies and deduced the correct meaning and have consequently given the summary (and interpretation - which satisfy Wiki criteria) of such records. I am sure material by scholars of the ASI which are indeed available as published records (you can go to the ASI office in Delhi or Mysore, the HQ for the inscriptions in South - and these records are all available in the same number of volumes as have been enumerated in the www.whatsindia.com/south_indian_inscriptions.
I will wait for you reply (sorry for the long post in response to my justification but I am used to generally making deeper readings and discussing equally deeply with people).

Srirangam99 (talk) 05:21, 5 November 2009 (UTC)

Srirangam, I was inactive when you had your disagreement with Dinesh, but I agree with a number of the points you made. The persecution of Vaishnavites by the Cholas has been overblown, and most modern scholars recognise that the Chola dynasty built a number of Vishnu temples. I think the introductions to the ASI volumes can usually be cited - keeping in mind, of course, that some of them are old and will need to be read in the light of more recent scholarship. My concerns about the article's current state stem from the fact that edits (not necessarily yours, I don't know whose edits they are) have added material into cited sentences which the sources don't support, and have gone into a level of detail on some points which doesn't fit with this article. We need to sort those issues out. -- Arvind (talk) 08:34, 5 November 2009 (UTC)
To be fair Arvind, I am not too keen on raising the issue of Vaishnavite persecution. It is of course a fact that the Cholas built their largest temples for Siva. It is only in one book by Suryanath Kamat (in the context of the deemed visit of Ramanuja to Hoysala country) where he has written that he was driven out by Cholas who were devout Saivites. Secondly, K.A.Nilakanta Sastri has indeed written in "History of South India" about Kulottunga II (not Kulo I or III) as having removed the idol of Vishnu from the Chidambaram temple which was later restored during the time of Devaraya I or II of Vijayanagara. Other than this there is a lot of confusion about the identity of the particular Kulottunga (Ramanuja lived between 1017 to 1137) and Kulo I ruled between 1076 to 1124 or so.. So Kulo I is widely remarked to be the persecutor.. but it is no one but Kulo I who has the largest number of inscriptions in the Sri Ranganatha Temple. I thought I may point this out.

In any case, pls. tell me if there is anyway I can cooperate and contribute to the betterment of the article. Also (this I say because it will help me learn as a new user), in case you involve me in prior discussion about passages to be removed or included for bettering the article, I will be grateful. I repeat, this will be an invaluable learning process for me in both contributing and properly formulating or formatting our contributions to Wiki articles/pages. Thats all.

Srirangam99 (talk) 13:01, 5 November 2009 (UTC)

Yes to all your questions, Srirangam. A number of your additions are very good, and we can hopefully make this article even better by working together. -- Arvind (talk) 23:13, 5 November 2009 (UTC)

I have some points for the topic 'Religion' in this article:

1. As some have mentioned earlier, the issue of Cholas persecuting Vaishnavites is blown out of proportions and many statements without any conclusion is present in the article.
2. The picture of 'Parambanan temple Complex', here is irrelevant and misleading. The Khemar temples of Indonesia have different origins, Cholas have no direct part in it. This has to be immediately rectified. guru (talk) 16:59, 12 June 2013 (UTC)

Content Chola Dynasty[edit]

Difficulties faced by Hoysala Veera Ballala II against Kalachuris and the Yadavas (Seunas):

K.A.N.Sastri 'Advanced History of India' Chapter 'The Kingdoms of the Peninsular India',page 297: Last para :"Bijjala Kalachuri"

I Text: (last seven lines) ".................Thereafter all his sons ruled in quick succession till A.D. 1183. But none of them had the ability to take full advantage of their father's usurpation. However, they succeeded in keeping up the hostilities against Hoysala Ballala II (A.D. 1173-1220).

Same book, page 298 same chapter viz. The Kingdoms of the Peninsular India: Para: Hoysalas:

II Text:"............Vira Ballala, grandson of Vishnuvardhana, further extended the dominions of his house, especially in the northerly direction. He had to encounter the Yadavas (A.D. 1191-92).

K.A.N.Sastri, 'A History of South India' Chapter: 'The age of the Four Kingdoms' page 198: last para: (pls. note that Yadavas are also known as the Seunas)

"To turn now to the northern states, the Yadava Jaitugi was succeeded by his son Singhana (1200-1247) under whom the Yadava empire attained its greatest extent. He invaded Gujarat twice in 1231-2 and 1237-8, while in the south he waged war first against Hoysala Ballala II and deprived him of considerable territory to the south of the Krishna and Malaprabha. He still kept up the pressure against the Hoysalas in the reign of Narasimha II, who had to abandon the Sagar taluq and the Bellary district......"

Till I or anyone else comes up with RS regarding help to Hoysalas by Kulo III you may kindly either delete that portion of text, in case any quality issues crop up in the article.

This is good. I will remove only the "Kulo III's help to VB II with Seunas" and leave the "VB II married Chola princess and became friendly with Kulo III part" --Sodabottle (talk) 11:28, 19 March 2010 (UTC)

Srirangam99 (talk) 10:33, 19 March 2010 (UTC)

Chola and Srivijaya[edit]

The article mentions that Chola invaded and conquered Srivijaya. As a source is among others work of Nilakanta Sastri from 1935. 5 years later he wrote in his study of Srivijaya (page 286) that there is no evidence of permanent occupation of Srivijava by Chola. Is the information presented correctly? I've been writing about the Indianized kingdoms (for fi.wiki) and haven't so far come across aby indication of Chola occupation of the Indonesian islands.--Nedergard (talk) 07:10, 15 October 2010 (UTC)

the article doesn't say anything about occupation. it just mentions the conquest. In the 1955 edition of Sastri's book (reprinted in 2005 p. 167) he says "..the expedition was a complete success. Kadaram (Kataha) and the capital of Sri Vijaya itself was sacked and king sangrama vijayottungavarman, mara vijayottungavarman's successor was taken captive. the campaign apparently ended with the restoration of the kingdom to its ruler subject to his acknowledging Chola suzerainty." I believe we can safely say "invaded and conquered" from this. --Sodabottle (talk) 07:27, 15 October 2010 (UTC)
Yes we can. Although they left right after that with "a vague acknowledemnt of Chola supremacy ... but of a permanent and continous subordination ... there is no trace whatever" (page 287). In this sense the map showing whole of Srivijaya under Chola subordination is to my knowledge a bit inaccurate - see for example how this subject is treated in article Srivijaya. It all depends on how literally suzerainity was taken back then and as far as I have understood it didn't mean much even though they might from time to time pay tribute. My personal opinion is that "sphere of influence" would be more accurate. But anyway, I was not going to get into Cholas but since it seems to have a major role in SEA history (and the fi-wiki arcticle is a stub) I'll have to get into this also. I suppose the Sastri book is not available online?--Nedergard (talk) 10:19, 15 October 2010 (UTC)
nope. the book is not available online. I agree with you on the map. It has to be modified to make it clear sri vijaya was not a territorial position and was a "sphere of influence". will try to to that.--Sodabottle (talk) 10:46, 15 October 2010 (UTC)

Nedergard, I strongly object the theory that the kingdom of Srivjaya was merely a sphere of influence. The kingdom of Srivijaya was raided on multiple occasions by the Cholas in order to establish supremacy over the trade route to China. It suffered the most devastating attack during the period of Rajendra Chola (the son of Rajaraja Chola) around 1025 AD. The king of Srivijaya was captured during this attack and subsequently, it became a Chola subordinate, if not a territory and was ruled over by a puppet regime from then till atleast the mid-12th century. Historian Nilakanta Sastri has only given a big picture but has not provided the complete details. There are multiple third party references including notable historians from China attesting to this effect. Also, I can provide multiple references to show the regular payment of tribute by Srivijaya to the Chola empire. One more point to note is that before the invasion, Srivijaya purely embraced Buddhism whereas subsequent to the attack numerous sculptures and statues of Hindu gods have been found. Historians date these in the early to mid 11th century and credit these to the Chola empire and propose that the Cholas exercised control over Srivijaya for sometime during the period from Rajendra Chola to Kulothunga Chola (about 60 to 70 years) at the very least. As such, it was not just a one-off attack. I will add these references in time. Feel free to tag the article and contest the neutrality in the meantime. Sembiyan (talk) 01:37, 23 October 2010 (UTC)

There were multiple raids? I have read off only one. Can you provide the sources. I am curious now--Sodabottle (talk) 04:41, 23 October 2010 (UTC)
I will bring the references in a bit. The Cholas hit them once for booty (before Rajendra Chola). Then Rajendra Chola invaded them decisively. Then they were hit once after just for the sake of showing the Cholas were in control of Srivijaya as the latter had masked the hit by Rajendra when they went as Chola vassals to the Chinese. Srivijaya had a long standing relationship with the Chinese even before the Tamil contact (w/ Chinese) and there were language issues. So they had better diplomatic maneuvarability and it took a while for the Chinese to understand that the Cholas were in control. This was the reason for the third attack. But actually I see some territories missing for eg. Khamboja(not Cambodia), I believe one of their sacred stone idols is here somewhere. Then maybe people will believe Satyasraya about the 900,000 number. Sembiyan (talk) 13:04, 24 October 2010 (UTC)
Well, I think the point here is: what is actually the meaning of "paying tribute" and what does it imply? I must admit I was (and still am) a little bit at odds with these claims of tribute or suzerainity. Most of the scholars treat Srivijaya as an independent polity throughout its history, but then casually mention it paid tribute to China, Chola etc. etc. The logic - or rather the lack of it - of all of this is what buffles me. It only makes sense to me if they were tributaries in name only (this is my theory, and I don't have any sources to back it up). However, it seems to me that the interpretation (of the scholars, that is) differs a lot wether you are looking at things from SEA perspective or from India.
A second point in the map: according to this they also ruled large parts of the Khmer empire which were in 1030 supposed to be parts of the Khmer empire. Something just does not add up here.
I'm not - per se - contesting the neutrality of the article, just questioning some aspects as the sources give contradictory views of events.--Nedergard (talk) 09:57, 9 January 2011 (UTC)

Wrong Map[edit]

The map contradict with other articles. According to Burmese history, Thaton Kingdom was never under the control of Chola and never a subordinate of Chola. (See citations at the article) Moreover, the map is in 1050s. The Burmese King Anawratha invaded and control lower Burma during that era. Please update the map and exclude control over Thaton. Soewinhan (talk) 10:34, 12 January 2011 (UTC)

Same thing thing with the whole of South-East Asia. It was never under Chola rule as indicated in the map.--Nedergard (talk) 13:15, 21 February 2011 (UTC)
The map claims that SEA was Chola's subordinates. I think no SEA king had ever submitted to Chola. I guess the map should be removed unless someone fixes the issue. SWHtalk 09:19, 19 November 2011 (UTC)
The map is clearly wrong on many accounts. It is an attempt to (1) attribute Indian cultural contributions to Southeast Asia, which were substantial, to the Cholas alone, and (2) conflate that cultural influence with political control. First, many Indian regions, not just southeastern India, contributed to the culture of SEA. Secondly, no history books on Burma has ever mentioned any political domination or control of any kind by an Indian polity. (I suspect that it too was the case elsewhere in SEA.) The map's date (circa 1050) is even more problematic because then the Pagan Empire was already ascendant, and its conquest of Lower Burma in 1057 did not report any Chola vassalage, or saw any reprisals from the supposed Chola overlords. Sri Vijaya is another problem. The best reconstruction of Sri Vijaya empire included the coastline of Sumatra, not the entire island. Sending merchant ships doesn't mean political control. Hybernator (talk) 14:54, 19 November 2011 (UTC)
  • Other problems
  1. Land area claims (3,600,000 km2 which is even larger than nowadays India)
  2. "Today part of" section inside the infobox.
  3. Claims like In addition Rajendra's territories included the area falling on the Ganges-Hooghly-Damodar basin, large parts of Burma, Thailand, Indo-China Laos, Kambodia, the Malay peninsula and Indonesia. are most likely wrong and need to be counterchecked with contemporary Southeast Asian history sources. I have never heard of any Chola invasion (or raid) to the Khmer Empire (Kambodia) or the Kingdom of Pagan (Burma). These kingdoms were far more powerful than Sri Lanka. Control over Laos is more problematic because it is a land lock country. Chola needs to pass through Khmer Empire to conquer Laos (then part of Khmer Empire).

SWH talk 05:20, 13 December 2011 (UTC)

I haven't found any SE Asian history book for the claim: In addition Rajendra's territories included the area falling on the Ganges-Hooghly-Damodar basin, large parts of Burma, Thailand, Indo-China Laos, Kambodia, the Malay peninsula and Indonesia. Even Coedes, the main proponent of "Indianization" of Southeast Asia, didn't mention anything about Cholas conquering anything: [1]. It's utterly misleading to (1) attribute Indianization with political control, and (2) claim credit for Indianization for the Chola Empire alone when other parts of India actively contributed to the process. Hybernator (talk) 00:32, 21 December 2011 (UTC)
I'm not aware of any Chola raids or conquests in Cambodia or Laos, but as far as Burma is concerned there are sources saying that Pegu was raided, or annexed, e.g. Cultural and religious heritage of India: Christianity By Suresh K. Sharma. Part of the source used in the article is available online at [2]. I judge from this that the places named in the Chola inscriptions (apart from Srivijaya and Pala) are not certainly identified. DrKiernan (talk) 09:39, 21 December 2011 (UTC)
I can't find any Burmese historical text to confirm this. The Burmese history books or the chronicles do not mention anything about Chola conquest of Pegu. But G.E Harvey countered Chola territorial claims in his book History of Burma pp.322. You can read it here.He stated, There is nothing to show that Cholas ever contemplated invading Lower Burma, let alone the interior. The theory rests on obsolete surmise that Kidaram, one of the Chola conquests, is identical with Pegu. Had there been a Chola ruler in Delta, the Burmese chronicles would surely mention him as vanquished in Anawrahta's 1057 campaign or Kyanzittha's expedition. But there is none. He further argued There remains the undoubted presence of a Chola "prince" in Burma. But he may not have been a prince. There is nothing to show that he was ruling anywhere in Burma; he may have been passing through on some mission further west. SWH talk 15:49, 21 December 2011 (UTC)


The book you've provided was published in 1925. Harvey was not contradicting Chola territorial claims over Pegu but only E. Hultzsch's identification of Kadaram, one of Rajendra Chola's conquests, with Pegu. Hultzsch's theory had been disproved since. "Kadaram" is now identified with the Kedah state of Malaysia.-RaviMy Tea Kadai 07:35, 26 January 2012 (UTC)
Published in 1925? So what about K.A. Nilakanta Sastri's The CōĻas. Madras: University of Madras 1935 to which much of this article content is cited. If you don't like old books, you can consult detailed books about Burmese history by Thant Myint-U, Victor Lieberman, Than Tun, Michael Aung-Thwin as well. I am sure you won't find anything about Chola conquests.
Had there been a Chola ruler in Delta, the Burmese chronicles would surely mention him as vanquished in Anawrahta's 1057 campaign or Kyanzittha's expedition. But there is none. He further argued There remains the undoubted presence of a Chola "prince" in Burma. But he may not have been a prince. There is nothing to show that he was ruling anywhere in Burma; he may have been passing through on some mission further west. If he is not contradicting the Chola territorial claims, what is he contradicting then? SWHtalk 09:27, 26 January 2012 (UTC)
DrKiernan, I'm sure you'll agree that the claims in the article should be cross-checked with the histories of the SE Asian countries. Don't you think the article/map should also cite a reputable book on SE Asian history that shows Cholas had any political/military control over the lands? I personally haven't found one that supports the claims.
Secondly, the liberal coloring of the lands under control needs to be supported by evidence. For much of history, even indigenous kingdoms didn't have any real control over the interior of the Malay peninsula and Sumatra. Sri Vijaya at its height mainly controlled the coastal regions. Even later Portuguese and Dutch much later with better weaponry had little control over the interior. It took the Dutch centuries to control all of Indonesia as did the British with India. The map as it stands apparently followed the Sri Vijaya empire as shown in this Wikipedia map [3] but its tagline says 8th century. Even if these boundaries are correct, surely, we can't attribute 8th century boundaries of Sri Vijaya to 11th century boundaries of Sri Vijaya (assuming Cholas had any control Sri Vijaya, which needs to be cross-checked.) Now, Cholas couldn't even rule all of Ceylon, and were driven out by 1070. That they controlled all of Sumatra and southern Malay peninsula seems wishful thinking.
As for Pegu, it's not even clear that Pegu as an entity existed in the 11th century. (Pegu did not appear as a place name until 1266 in an Old Burmese inscription. see page 29 of this book.) Again, it only emphasizes the point that the claims needs to be cross-checked with the histories of those so claimed. It's only fair, and right. Hybernator (talk) 01:38, 22 December 2011 (UTC)
The Cholas, by K. A. Nilakanta Sastri, clearly states that Rajendra Chola I sent a military expedition which invaded South-East Asia and that the invasion was successful. Please see South-East Asia campaign of Rajendra Chola I. At the same time, Sastri also claims that the Cholas never ruled over these countries though they did manage to exercise a certain degree of control over them. I agree that the Chola Empire did not include South-East Asia but those areas definitely came under the Chola sphere of influence during the 11th century. The annals of the Song Dynasty, too, agree with it. I'd rather stand by the author who is considered to be "one of the greatest historians of South India" and whose book stands good to this day than some stray works picked up from Google Books. Statements such as "Even the Portugese and the Dutch were not able to conquer these territories how could the Cholas possibly have" or "The Cholas could not even rule Ceylon" borders on original research.-RaviMy Tea Kadai 07:20, 26 January 2012 (UTC)
Which part of the SEA you are referring to? We are talking about Burma and some parts of the mainland SEA. I am not disputing the fact that Chola sent several expeditions to Srivijaya. And you should not criticize our cited books as "some stray works picked up from Google Books" without having any prior knowledge on them. G.E. Harvey is an authoritative Burmese historian. As far as Burma is concerned, his works are much more reliable than works of any Indian historian. And Michael Aung-Thwin is Professor of Asian Studies at Hawaii University; his books are definitely not "some stray works". If you need more books, you can consult works of Thant Myint-U or Victor Lieberman. For Burmese history, of course, Burmese historians are much more reliable than Indian historians.
I checked out South-East Asia campaign of Rajendra Chola I. The cited book is again that of Nilakanta Sastri. His claim of Chola conquest of Pegu is based on the studies of Chola inscriptions. Even Indian historians do not certainly say Mapappalam, mentioned in the inscriptions is Pegu. For example, an equally important historian, Ramesh Chandra Majumdar said that the current view that Rajendra Chola conquered Pegu is wrong. (Ancient India 1971, p. 407)
And original research? See the discussion above and Srivijaya article. These two articles are apparently contradicting. Chola definitely did not conquer entire Srivijaya. But the map shows the whole Srivijaya under Chola's control. SWHtalk 09:13, 26 January 2012 (UTC)
Firstly, I am not going to respond to the personal attacks made here. Secondly, I only made a general statement supporting K. A. Nilakanta Sastri and not questioning the veracity of any Burmese historian. As for G. E. Harvey, his 1925 book only debunks the theory of Chola conquest of Pegu suggested by E. Hultzsch. I had mistakenly mentioned Papphala as "a part of the Talaing country", which it is not; in fact, what I intended to say is that Papphala could have been a part of Lower Burma. That's all! I, now, reproduce Sastri's claims from his book

Even as late as 1903, though a great deal of advance had been made by him from his original position, Hultzsch was stil far from the mark when he said: 'Of the numerous places which are mentioned in connection with this expedition, Mr. Venkayya has identified two, viz. Nakkavaram and Pappalam. The former is the Tamil name of the Nicobar islands, and according to the Mahavamsa, Papphala was a port in Ramanna, i.e., the Talaing country of Burma. Hence Kadaram had to be looked for in Farther India'. For some years thereafter, Rajendra's expedition was held to have been directed against the kingdom of Pegu, and the archaeologists of Burma even announced the discovery of two octagonal granite pillars near Pegu, which were identified by them 'with the Jayasthambha or pillars of victory set up by Rajendra Chola who overran Pegu in AD 1025-27.' It was only in 1918 that Coedes brought together in his cogent and lucid paper Le Royaume de Sri Vijaya evidence accumulated along various lines by several years of study on the part of many scholars, discussed fully the identification of the places mentioned in connection with Rajendra's campaign, and laid the basis of an intelligible account for it. The Archaeological Department of Burma, though at first inclinde to be critical of Coedes' scheme, later acknowledged its substantial accuracy by removing the celebrated granite pillars from the list of the protected monuments of Burma

—The Cholas, pp 213-214
So, this is the theory which Harvey countered in 1925 and not Sastri's claims about Papphala which were made in 1935. This is what Sastri has got to say about Mappapalam

Mapappalam, as shown by Venkayya, is mentioned in the Mahavamsa under the name Papphalama, as the place where the Tamil general Adicca landed when he was sent on an expedition against Ramannadesa by Parakramabahu of Ceylon about AD 1165. From this Venkayya concluded that Mappapalam must be a place in the Talaing country of Lower Burma, and he has been followed by other writers who have proceeded to make other identifications on this basis. In fact it seems at first sight that this mention of Pappalam in an expedition against Ramannadesa violently contradicts the assumption that all the places captured by Rajendra were dependant on Palembang and within easy reach of it. Coedes, however, draws attention to the fact that the long list of grievances which Parakramabahu had against the ruler of Ramanna ends with his capture by force of a Sinhalese princess nwhom the ruler of Lanka had sent to the Kambhoja country, and suggests that 'as it is infinitely probable that the messenges of Ceylon to Kambhoja pass by the isthumus of Kra, it is in this region that the abduction (of the princess) must have been committed, and consequently, the authority of the king of Pagan might have extended so far'. In the beginning of the eleventh century, however, the suzerainty of Palembang extended upto the Bay of Bandon, and there is no difficulty therefore in assuming that Mapappalam was a locality in the region of the isthumus of Kra, though its exact identity cannot now be made out.

—The Cholas, p 216
So, evidently, Sastri is claiming that the Papphalama could have been a part of the Tenasserim region. The same is attested by the map given in the book which locates Papphala in the Tenasserim region on the Burma-Thailand border at the head of Malay peninsular. And that, all that I am saying is that statements such as "Even the Portugese and the Dutch were not able to conquer these territories how could the Cholas possibly have" or "The Cholas could not even rule Ceylon", etc., aren't the right sort of arguments to be made here. Japan is a very small country and very few expected such a small country and that too, an Asiatic nation to beat the Russian Empire in the Russo-Japanese War of 1905 and yet, it did. It is natural for every one of us to have our individual opinions but it is imperative that in Wikipedia we assume a neutral point of view and desist from coming to premature conclusions.-RaviMy Tea Kadai 10:57, 26 January 2012 (UTC)
Where is the personal attack? The first, and the only time I use "you" is in this sentence. And you should not criticize our cited books as "some stray works picked up from Google Books" without having any prior knowledge on them. This is just a suggestion. And I had to respond because you probably meant to characterize our cited books (which are from authoritative Burmese historians) as "some stray works picked up from Google Books". (All the books we have cited are linked to Google Books) I did not intend to attack you. SWHtalk 12:30, 26 January 2012 (UTC)

Chola record-keeping[edit]

I read somewhere that the Cholas were very good at record-keeping (at least as compared to other Indian kingdoms rather than the Europeans) in the form of thousands and thousands copper plates that are still preserved in the various temples. I didn't see much content related to that in this article and I'm wondering if we can source a paragraph about it? Zuggernaut (talk) 06:21, 9 February 2011 (UTC)

The influence of cholas[edit]

I completely disagree with the opinion of soe winhan claiming lesser chola influence in southeast asia.Disagreement also occur when indian historians were degraded and compared with burmese historians.I also want to hear from SWH which other parts of india is active in cultural indianisation of south east other than ancient tamil country.Sure no SEA history books will admit their ancestors(SouthEastAsian) were under the control of other civilisation such as india because it is contraindicating to current culture of the SEA People who embraces Buddhism and Islam while the Cholas were Hindus.(The discriminations of Burmese People towards Indian community in Burma during post independent periods are prove why indians influence were denied by Burmese Historians,The Burmese want to get rid of indian culture and languages which rules their place compared to indigenous culture thus denying their influence in ancient burma.I also want hear from SWH why is the connection between the land area of modern india and the land area which were ruled by the cholas.As said by SWH,sending merchants ship does not mean political control,sending merchants ship along would also not bring indian civilisation,tamil martial arts,tamil architechture and tamil and indian religion,but what is the condition of SEA people in ancient time,They patronized Hinduism,alot of massive temple such as Angkor wat,Prambanan are built in Dravidian Style,they practises martial arts similar to south indians and even today pali language are being used in buddhism in Burma and Thailand.So in conclusion not only merchant ships were involved and Indian Historians are not stupid to assume warships as merchant ships.SWH ,I also wanted to hear from you what is the name of kings of SEA of ancient and medieval time ,Why their name were in Tamil and Sanskrit other than any any names belonging to any SEA languages.Are you trying to say merchant ships can also change your kings name.SWH said he/she coulnt find books linking cholas to SEA,But in popular tamil culture various parts of SEA is mentioned.Othet than that what is the connection between the strength of Lanka Kingdom And Khmer Kingdom and Chola KIngdom and how SWH conclude that SEA Kingdoms are stronger than lanka or indian Kingdoms,Eventhough in 1070 cholas defeated in Lanka But only in several years Lanka Were again recaptured by Pandyans.This clearly shows how Tamil Hardpower works in ancient time.SWH could not find books regardingm Cholas and their influence in SEA,but I can find Lembah Bujang in Kedah which clearly states who are Cholas and what their power in SEA during that time.I also have a question for SWH,Why the most of the oldest inscription found in SEA are in Indian language rather than SEA languages and so called strong Khmer empire patronised indian culture. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Tan Meifen (talkcontribs) 12:04, 26 January 2012 (UTC)

We are talking about political control. Not about cultural influence. What I mean by "Burmese historian" is a historian specializing in Burmese history. Not a historian with Burmese citizenship. For Chola territorial claims inside Burma, they are more reliable because they cross-check Chola territorial claims with local chronicles and physical evidences. The same goes for other SEA countries. SWHtalk 12:47, 26 January 2012 (UTC)
Answer to Tan Meifan. You can't conflate the India's contributions to SE Asia with Chola's political control over it. First, many other parts of India contributed to SE Asia's Indianized culture, not just the Cholas. (The Pyu script for example came from western India.) Secondly, SE India's contributions by themselves don't mean Cholas' political control. Satri's outlandish claims aside, I'm not aware of any Mainland SE Asia historian claiming that Cholas (or any Indian state) had any political control over Burma, Thailand or Cambodia. This is not to deny the many contributions made by Mother India. But you can't attribute all those contributions to the Cholas alone, and make the leap that they controlled these areas. There's no evidence of political control, according to mainstream SE Asia scholarship.Hybernator (talk) 16:26, 14 April 2012 (UTC)

Chola conquest[edit]

Chola conquest does not only involve SriVijaya in Malay peninsula,the cholas also diminishes Kedah Tua and Gangga Negara.Other than inscriptios that is found in Southeast Asia were also in pallava sanskrit indicating the presence of pallavas in SEA most probably during 2nd-4th century.Thanks for the response SWH — Preceding unsigned comment added by Tan Meifen (talkcontribs) 13:07, 27 January 2012 (UTC)

Featured article review[edit]

I think this article is due for a Featured article review as it no longer meets many of the criteria. I brought this issue up a couple of years ago (see above: Article issues). Some problems include an over reliance on Sastri when those notes may not reflect more recent academic consensus, addition of a lot of unsourced text over the past many months among other issues that have already been highlighted. —SpacemanSpiff 06:21, 27 May 2012 (UTC)

Support. I can only speak for a general SE Asian history perspective but the article relies too much on Sastri. The SE Asia related claims need to be cross-checked with the academic opinion of those supposedly conquered lands. I'm surprised the original FA process didn't take this into account. Hybernator (talk) 13:53, 17 June 2012 (UTC)
Support - the nom and Hybernator have hit the nail on the head, especially wrt Sastri. - Sitush (talk) 06:33, 22 November 2012 (UTC)
Support - I too agree, there is a lot of un-referenced comments under sub-title 'Religion'. Sastri being the main source is also not OK. There have been many developments in undrestanding Cholas in the resent times, perhaps using them woulf be mor prudent. Maps, the inclusion of the 'Parambanan temple Complex' photo, make this article of less vale for a reliable reference on Chola Dynasty. The presence of Cholas in SE Asia should be presented with good references, the current picture is not accurate. guru (talk) 17:17, 12 June 2013 (UTC)

Territorial claims[edit]

The article needs attention of an objective expert, at least on the Medieval Cholas section. I've removed most of the mainland SEA countries (Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam) from the territories list in the info box.

I've checked the following books, and they provide no mention of Cholas or Colas whatsoever in Southeast Asia.

  • The Cambridge History of Southeast Asia (1999) [4]
  • In Search of Southeast Asia (1987) [5]
  • Strange Parallels Vol. 1: Southeast Asia in Global Context, c. 800-1830 (2003) [6]

I've found so far two books that mention Chola raids in modern Indonesia and Malaysia

  • Strange Parallels: Volume 2, Mainland Mirrors: Europe, Japan, China, South Asia, and the Islands (2009) [7] -- Cholas sacked Srivijaya (Indonesia) in 1025 and took the ruler away. But that's it.
  • The Territories and States of India, p. 229 [8] -- Cholas raided the Malay peninsula, securing trade routes to modern Indonesia and China

Hybernator (talk) 15:12, 28 April 2013 (UTC)

Era style[edit]

Per WP:ERA, the era style of a page should be consistent throughout, whichever style is used. Why would this page use BC/AD when Christianity isn't even mentioned? The page should use BCE/CE throughout, and the era should be dropped completely once there would be no confusion that the dates refer to CE ("Do not use CE or AD unless the date or century would be ambiguous without it"). Laszlo Panaflex (talk) 15:10, 27 June 2013 (UTC)