Detail of the masonry of the northern dam at Bhojpur
Pillar in the Bijamaṇḍal, Vidisha with an inscription of Naravarman
The Paramara / Puar / Panwar dynasty was an early medieval Indian royal Rajput house that originated in the Mount Abu region of Rajasthan and later ruled over the Malwa region in central India. The most significant ruler was Bhoja I. The seat of the Paramara kingdom was Dhārānagara, the present day Dhar city in Madhya Pradesh. The Paramara rulers were appointed as governors by the Kings of the Rashtrakuta dynasty when Malwa was conquered by the south Indian Emperor Govinda III. The main sources for the history of the Paramara dynasty are the Nava-sahasanka-charita of Padmagupta and a series of inscriptions, most notably the Udayapur Praśasti at the Udayesvar Temple at Udaypur in Vidisha district, Madhya Pradesh.
Map showing the find-spots of the inscriptions of the Paramāras
The Paramara kingdom was established by the Rashtrakuta dynasty of southern India as governors of Malwa when the south Indian Emperor Govinda III of the Rashtrakuta Dynasty conquered Malwa. According to the Bhavisya Purana, the Kamadhenu (a cow which grants all wishes of one) of the sage Vasishtha was stolen by another sage Vishvamitra. Vasishtha therefore made an offering to the sacrificial fire at Mount Abu. A hero sprang out from the sacrificial fire and brought back the cow to the sage Vasishtha, who bestowed the name Parmar (slayer of the enemy) on him.
Bhoja I (-1055) was the most well-known ruler of this dynasty. He was a scholar and established a centre for Sanskrit studies in Dhara Nagari, his capital. 23 works are ascribed to him, which include the Samaranganasutradhara.
Vakpatiraja IIMunja – Defeated Mewar under Narwahana or his son Shakti Kumar and plundered Ahar their new capital. He also invaded Marwar which was under the Chauhanas. He defeated the Kalachuri king Yuvaraja II and sacked his capital Tripuri. His battles with Tailapa II of Western Chalukya are considered epic. He invaded the Western Chalukyas, hoping to defeat the still-evolving new regional power, but Tailapa repelled the invasion and captured him. He died in captivity.
Bhoja I – Fought with his neighbours with varying results but was able to keep Muslims out of Malwa. He was a polymath and authored many books on various topics including Samarangana-sutradhara. He is considered the greatest king of his dynasty. He is also a subject of early known brain surgery for a tumour by inducing coma using something called sammohini.
^The Paramāras, c. 800-1305 A.D., Pratipal Bhatia, 1970, p. 15
^H.V. Trivedi, Editor, Inscriptions of the Paramaras, Chandellas, Kachchhapaghatas and two minor Dynasties", part 2 of the 3-part Vol III of Corpus Inscriptionum Indicarum, edited in 1974 by (published in 1991)