Ikshvaku dynasty

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The Ikshvaku dynasty, in Puranic literature, was a mythical dynasty[1] founded by Ikshvaku. Ikshvaku, literally means "sugar cane". The dynasty is also known as Sūryavaṁśa (the Solar dynasty). Rama, hero of the Ramayana belonged to this dynasty.[2] Twenty-two out of the twenty-four Jain Tirthankara belonged to this dynasty.[3]

The important personalities belonging to this royal house are Harishchandra, Dilīpa, Sagara,[4] Raghu, Rama and Prasenajit. Although, both the Hindu Puranas and the Buddhist texts include Shuddodhana, Gautama Buddha and Rahula in their accounts of the Ikshvaku dynasty, but according to the Buddhist texts, Mahasammata, an ancestor of Ikshvaku was the founder of this dynasty,[5] who was elected by the people as the first king of the present era. According to the Puranas, supreme preceptor of the Ikshvaku dynasty was sage Vashishta.

Hinduism[edit]

In Hinduism, Ikshvaku, is the grandson of Vivasvan or Surya and son of Vaivasvata Manu. They ruled from the Kosala Kingdom, today known as Oudh in the state of Uttar Pradesh along the banks of river Sarayu with saketa, Ayodhya today as their capital. Ikshvaku is the first king who executed the Manusmrti or religious rules of Hindu living which were composed by his father Manu. Ikshvaku, ruled as Monarch at the beginning of the Treta Yuga or second yuga, had hundred sons. His estates descended to his eldest son Vikukshi.[6] The two Indian epics, Ramayana and Mahabharata, have numerous mentions of this dynasty.

Ikshvaku dynasty lineage[edit]

The lists of kings of Ikṣvāku or Aikṣvāka dynasty are found in the Ramayana, the Mahabharata, the Harivamsha and the Puranas. The Raghuvamsha of Kalidasa also mentions the names of the kings of this dynasty.[7][8]

To Kusha[edit]

The genealogy of the Ikshvaku dynasty to Rama is mentioned in the Ramayana in two lists . The only difference between the two lists is that, Kukshi is mentioned only in the second list . In the first list , Vikukshi is mentioned as the son of Ikshvaku.[9] The genealogy is as follows:

Brahma

Marichi

Kashyapa

Vivasvan or Surya

Vaivasvata Manu

The begin Of Ikshwaku Dynasty

  1. Ikshvaku
  2. Kukshi/Vikukshi-Vikukshi is the son of King Ikshvaku, the first king of the Ikshvaku dynasty and founder of the Sun Dynasty (Suryavansha). Among the hundred sons of king Ikshvaku, Vikukshi is the eldest one. Because he has very broad chest of a warrior, he was called as Vi-Kukshi.
  3. Kakutstha
  4. Prithu
  5. Drishasasya
  6. Andhra
  7. Jubanashwa
  8. Sravasthi (Built Sravasti City)
  9. Brihadasva
  10. Kuvalayasva (or) Dubdhunara
  11. Dridhasva
  12. Haryasva
  13. Nikumbha
  14. Samhastasva
  15. Krisasva
  16. Prasenajit
  17. Jubanashwa(2)
  18. Mandhata
  19. Ambarisha
  20. Sambhuti
  21. Anaranya
  22. Haryasva(2)
  23. Sumati
  24. Tridhanva
  25. Thrayaruni
  26. Satyavrata (or) Trishanku
  27. Harishchandra(unwavering and resolutely dedicated to dharma(truth))
  28. Rohit
  29. Harita
  30. Chanchu
  31. Vinaya
  32. Ruruka
  33. Bahu
  34. Sagara
  35. Asamanja
  36. Amsumantha
  37. Dilīpa
  38. Bhagiratha
  39. Srutha
  40. Nabhaga
  41. Ambarisha(2)
  42. Ayutayu
  43. Rituparna
  44. Sarvakama
  45. Sudama
  46. Saudasa (or) Kalmashapada
  47. Asmaka
  48. Mulaka
  49. Satharatha
  50. Ldabida
  51. Krisakarma
  52. Dilipa(2) (or) Khatvanga
  53. Deerghabahu
  54. Raghu( know for his great conquests all over the globe)
  55. Aja
  56. Dasaratha
  57. Rama( Lakshmana, Bharata & Shatrughna are his siblings and he is also avatar of lord Vishnu)

In the Ramayana, we find that, Lava and Kusha were the sons of Rama.

Kusha to Brihadbala[edit]

The Puranas provide a genealogical list from Kusha to Brihadbala, who was killed by Abhimanyu in the Mahabharata war. This list is corroborated by the Raghuvamsha till Agnivarna:[10]

  • Kusha
  • Atithi, the son of Kusha
  • Nishadha, the son of Atithi
  • Nala, the son of Nishadha
  • Nabhas, the son of Nala
  • Pundarika, the son Nabhas
  • Kshemadhanvan, the son of Pundarika
  • Devanika, the son of Kshemadhanvan
  • Ahinagu, the son of Davanika
  • Paripatra, the son of Ahinagu
  • Dala (or Bala), the son of Ahinagu
  • Uktha, the son of Dala
  • Vajranabha, the son of Uktha
  • Shankhana, the son of Vajranabha
  • Vyushitashva, the son of Shankhana
  • Vishvasaha, the son of Vyushitashva
  • Hiranyanabha, the son of Vishvasaha
  • Pushya, the son of Hiranyanabha
  • Dhruvasandhi, the son of Pushya
  • Agnivarna, the son of Dhruvasandhi
  • Shighra, the son of Agnivarna
  • Maru, the son of Shighra
  • Prasushruta, the son of Maru
  • Susandhi, the son of Prasushruta
  • Amarsha and Sahasvanta, the sons of Susandhi
  • Vishrutavanta, the son of Amarsha
  • Brihadbala, the son of Vishrutavanta.

Brihadbala to Sumitra[edit]

The Puranas also provide the list of the kings from Brihadbala to the last ruler Sumitra. But these lists mention Shakya as an individual, and incorporate the names of Shakya, Shuddodhana, Siddhartha (Gautama Buddha) and Rahula between Sanjaya and Prasenajit. The names of the kings are:[11]

  • Birhadbala
  • Brihatkshaya
  • Urukshaya
  • Vatsavyuha
  • Prativyoma
  • Divakara
  • Sahadeva
  • Brihadashva
  • Bhanuratha
  • Pratitashva
  • Supratika
  • Marudeva
  • Sunakshatra
  • Kinnara
  • Antariksha
  • Suvarna
  • Sumitra Amitrajit
  • Dharmin
  • Kritanjaya
  • Sanjaya Mahakoshala
  • Prasenajit (c. 6th century BCE)
  • Kshudraka
  • Kulaka
  • Suratha
  • Sumitra, defeated by Mahapadma Nanda

In Buddhist tradition[edit]

The Buddhist text, Mahavamsa (II, 1-24) traces the origin of the Shakyas to king Okkaka (Pali equivalent to Sanskrit Ikshvaku) and gives their genealogy from Mahasammata, an ancestor of Okkaka. This list comprises the names of a number of prominent kings of the Ikshvaku dynasty, namely, Mandhata and Sagara.[12] The genealogy according to the Mahavamsa is as follows:[13][14]

  1. Okkaka
  2. Okkamukha
  3. Sivisamjaya
  4. Sihassara
  5. Jayasena
  6. Sihahanu
  7. Suddhodana
  8. Siddhartha (Gautama Buddha)
  9. Rahula

In Jainism[edit]

The Ikshvaku dynasty has a significant place in Jainism, as twenty-two Tirthankaras were born in this dynasty.[15]

  • Origin
    • Rishabha (son of Nabhiraja), the founder of Jainism in the present Avasarpani era (descending half time cycle as per Jain cosmology) is said to have founded the Ikshvaku dynasty. Ikshvaku is considered to be his another name.[16] He is said to have taught the people how to extract sugarcane juice. Hence, name for the Ikshvaku dynasty comes from the word ikhsu (sugarcane) because of this event.[17]
    • Bahubali and Bharata (1st Chakravarti), sons of Rishabha
    • Marichi, son of Bharata
  • at the time of Ajitanatha
    • Jitashatru (father of Ajitanatha) and his younger brother Sumitra (father of Sagara)
    • Ajitanatha (the 2nd Tirthankara) and Sagara (2nd Chakravarti)
    • Janhu (eldest son of Sagara), the one who flooded village of Nagas with waters of Ganga leading to turning of sixty thousand sons of Sagara into ashes by Jawalanprabha (emperor of Nagas)
    • Bhagiratha (eldest grandson of Sagara)
  • at the time of Vasupujya
  • at the time of Shantinatha
    • Visvasena (father of Shantinatha)
    • Shantinatha, the 16th Tirthankara and 5th Chakravarti
    • Chakrayudha, son of Shantinatha
    • Kuruchandra, son of Chakrayudha[18]
  • at the time of Kunthunatha
  • at the time of Aranatha
  • at the time of Munisuvrata (Munisuvrata himself was not from Ikshvaku, but Harivamsa)[19]

Andhra Ikshvaku[edit]

Andhra Ikshvakus (Sanskrit इक्ष्वाकु, Telugu ఇక్ష్వాకులు) were one of the earliest recorded ruling dynasties of the Karimnagar-Warangal-Krishna-Guntur regions of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.They ruled the Telugu country along the Godavari and Krishna River during the later half of the 2nd century CE.[20] Their capital was Vijayapuri (Nagarjunakonda). It is a strong common belief that Andhra Ikshvakus were related to the mythological Ikshvakus, although Andhra Ikshvakus seem to be a local tribe who adopted the title.[21]

Archaeological evidence has suggested that the Andhra Ikshvakus immediately succeeded the Satavahanas in the Krishna river valley. Ikshvakus have left inscriptions at Nagarjunakonda, Jaggayyapeta, Amaravati and Bhattiprolu.

Literary evidence[edit]

The Puranas mention them as the Sriparvatiyas (Foresters), Rulers of Sriparvata (Forests) and Andhrabhrtyas (Servants of the Andhras). The Satavahanas were also known as Andhras.

History[edit]

Andhra Ikshvakus were originally feudatories of the Satavahanas and bore the title Mahatalavara. Although the Puranas state that seven kings ruled for 100 years in total, the names of only four of them are known from inscriptions.

  • Vasishthiputra Sri Santamula (Santamula I), the founder of the line, performed the Asvamedha, Agnihotra, Agnistoma and Vajapeya sacrifices. Santamula performed the Asvamedha sacrifices with a view to proclaiming their independent and imperial status. It had become a common practice among the rulers of the subsequent dynasties to perform the Asvamedha sacrifice in token of their declaration of independent status. From this fact, it can be inferred that it was Santamula I who first declared his independence and established the Andhra Ikshvaku dynasty.
  • Virapurushadatta was the son and successor of Santamula through his wife Madhari. He had a sister named Adavi Santisri. He took a queen from the Saka family of Ujjain and gave his daughter in marriage to a Chutu prince. Almost all the royal ladies were Buddhists. An aunt of Virapurushadatta built a big Stupa at Nagarjunakonda. Her example was followed by other women of the royal family.
  • Virapurushadatta's son Ehuvula Santamula (Santamula II) ruled after a short Abhira interregnum. His reign witnessed the completion of a Devi Vihara, the Sihala Vihara, a convent founded for the accommodation of Sinhalese monks, and the Chaitya-ghara (Chaitya hall) dedicated to the fraternities (Theriyas) of Tambapanni (Ceylon). Ceylonese Buddhism was in close touch with Andhra. The sculptures of Nagarjunakonda, which include large figures of Buddha, show decided traces of Greek influence and Mahayana tendencies.
  • Rudrapurushadatta was the name of an Ikshvaku ruler found in inscriptions from Gurajala in Guntur districts of Andhra Pradesh. He could have been a son of Ehuvula Santamula. Rudrapurushadatta ruled for more than 11 years. He was probably the last important ruler of the Andhra Ikshvaku family. After him there were three more unknown rulers according to the Puranas. Around 278 CE, the Abhiras might have put an end to the Ikshvakus.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  • The Andhras Through the Ages by Kandavalli Balendu Sekharam

References[edit]

  1. ^ Geography of Rgvedic India, M.L. Bhargava, Lucknow 1964, pp. 15-18, 46-49, 92-98, 100-/1, 136
  2. ^ Zimmer 1952, p. 218.
  3. ^ Zimmer 1952, p. 220.
  4. ^ Ikshaku tribe The Mahabharata translated by Kisari Mohan Ganguli (1883 -1896), Book 3: Vana Parva: Tirtha-yatra Parva: Section CVI, p. 228 'There was born in the family of the Ikshaku, a ruler of the earth named Sagara, endued with beauty, and strength...".
  5. ^ Malalasekera, G. P. (2007) [1937]. Dictionary of Pāli Proper Names: A-Dh. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass. pp. 461–2. ISBN 978-81-208-3021-9. 
  6. ^ http://www.gloriousindia.com/history/dynasties/ikshvaku/ikshvaku.html
  7. ^ Pargiter, F.E. (1972). Ancient Indian Historical Tradition. New Delhi: Motilal Banarasidass. pp. 90–91. 
  8. ^ Valmiki, Arshia Sattar (1996). The Ramayana. New Delhi: Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-029866-5. 
  9. ^ Vyas, R.T. (ed.) (1992). Vālmīki Rāmāyaṇa, Text as Constituted in its Critical Edition. Vadodara: Oriental Institute, Vadodara. pp. 91–2, 255–56. 
  10. ^ Pargiter, F.E. (1972). Ancient Indian Historical Tradition. New Delhi: Motilal Banarasidass. p. 149. 
  11. ^ Misra, V.S. (2007). Ancient Indian Dynasties, Mumbai: Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, ISBN 81-7276-413-8, pp.283-8, 384
  12. ^ Law, B.C. (1973). Tribes in Ancient India, Bhandarkar Oriental Series No.4, Poona: Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute, p.246
  13. ^ Misra, V.S. (2007). Ancient Indian Dynasties, Mumbai: Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, ISBN 81-7276-413-8, p.286
  14. ^ Geiger, Wilhelm (tr.) (1912). "Mahavamsa, Chapter II". Ceylon Government Information Dept.,Colombo (in lakdvia.org website). Retrieved 2009-10-26. 
  15. ^ Jain, Kailash Chand (1991). Lord Mahāvīra and His Times. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass. p. 2. ISBN 81-208-0805-3. 
  16. ^ Jain 1991, p. 5.
  17. ^ Shah 2004, p. 15.
  18. ^ http://www.jainsamaj.org/rpg_site/literature2.php?id=1403&cat=42
  19. ^ Jaina-Rupa Mandana: Jaina Iconography. p. 161. 
  20. ^ Andhra Ikshvaku inscriptions
  21. ^ Ancient India, A History Textbook for Class XI, Ram Sharan Sharma, National Council of Educational Research and Training, India , pp 212

Bibliography[edit]

Preceded by
None
Ikshvaku Dynasty Succeeded by
Shishunaga dynasty