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Rajaraja I

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Rajaraja I
Rājakēsari Varman,
Ponniyin Selvan, Mum'muṭi Cōḻan,[1] Sivapathasekaran, Taila Kula Kaalan, Pandiya kula sani, Thelungu Kula Kaalan, Keralandhagan, Singalandhagan, Kṣatriya Śikhāmaṇi
A Mural of Rajaraja I at Brihadisvara Temple
Chola Emperor
Reignc. 985 – c. 1014
SuccessorRajendra I
King of Anuradhapura
Reignc. 992 – c. 1014
PredecessorMahinda V
SuccessorRajendra I
BornArulmozhi Varman
c. 947
Thanjavur, Chola Empire (modern-day Tamil Nadu, India)
Diedc. 1014(1014-00-00) (aged 66–67)
Thanjavur, Chola Empire
  • Thiripuvana Madeviyar
  • Lokamahadevi
  • Cholamahadevi
  • Tirilokyamahadevi
  • Panchavanmahadevi
  • Abhimanavalli
  • Latamahadevi
  • Prithivimahadevi
  • Rajendra I
  • Araiyan Rajarajan
  • Arulmozhi chandramalli alias Gangamadevi
  • Mathevadigal
Regnal name
Raja Raja Cholan
FatherParantaka II
MotherVanavan Mahadevi
See details
SignatureRajaraja I's signature

Rajaraja I (Middle Tamil: Rājarāja Cōḻaṉ; Classical Sanskrit: Rājarāja Śōḷa; 947 – 1014),[1][2] also known as Rajaraja the Great, was a Chola emperor who reigned from 985 CE to 1014 CE. He is known for his conquests of South India and parts of Sri Lanka, and increasing Chola influence across the Indian Ocean.[3][4]

Rajaraja's empire encompassed vast territories, including regions of the Pandya country, the Chera country, and northern Sri Lanka. He also extended his influence over strategic islands such as Lakshadweep, Thiladhunmadulu atoll, and parts of the Maldives in the Indian Ocean. His conquests weren't limited to the south; he also launched successful campaigns against the Western Gangas and the Western Chalukyas, extending Chola authority as far as the Tungabhadra River. In the east, Rajaraja faced fierce opposition from the Telugu Chola king Jata Choda Bhima over control of Vengi. This region held significant strategic importance due to its access to resources and trade routes. The conflict between the two rulers intensified as they vied for dominance in the region, resulting in significant battles and shifting allegiances.[5][6][7][8]

Rajaraja I also left a significant mark through his architectural and cultural achievements. He commissioned the construction of the Rajarajeshwaram Temple in the Chola capital of Thanjavur, which is revered as one of the most prominent examples of medieval South Indian architectural style.[9] Additionally, during his reign, important Tamil literary works by poets such as Appar, Sambandar, and Sundarar were gathered and compiled into a single collection known as the Thirumurai. This earned him the title of 'Thirumurai Kanda Cholar,' meaning The One Who Found Thirumurai.[6][10] He initiated a project of land survey and assessment in 1000 CE which led to the reorganisation of Tamil country into individual units known as valanadus.[11][12] Rajaraja died in 1014 CE, and was succeeded by his son Rajendra Chola I.

Early life

Rajaraja and his brother Aditha Karikalan meeting their guru.

Rajaraja was a son of the Chola king Parantaka II (alias Sundara) and queen Vanavan Mahadevi.[13] According to the Thiruvalangadu copper-plate inscription, his birth name was Arulmoḻi (also transliterated as Arulmozhi) Varman, literally "blessed tongued".[1][14] He was born around 947 CE in the Aipassi month, on the day of Sadhayam star.[15] The Government of Tamil Nadu recognizes his birthdate as 3 November 947.[16] He had an elder brother – Aditha II,[2] and an elder sister – Kundavai.[17]

Rajaraja's ascension ended a period of rival claims to the throne, following the death of his great-grandfather Parantaka I. After Parantaka I, his elder son Gandaraditya ascended the throne. At the time of Gandaraditya's death, his son Madhurantakan was a minor, so the throne passed on to Parantaka I's younger son Arinjaya. Arinjaya died soon and was succeeded by his son Parantaka II, also known as Sundara Chola. It was decided that the throne would pass on to Madhurantakan after Sundara: this decision was most probably that of Sundara himself, although the Thiruvalangadu inscription of Rajaraja's son Rajendra I claims that it was made by Rajaraja.[2]

Aditha died under mysterious circumstances; inscriptions hint at him being assassinated. Sundara died soon after, clearing the way for Madhurantakan to be king under the title Uttama Chola. After the death of Uttama, Rajaraja finally ascended the throne in June–July 985.[2] Known as Arumoḷi Varman until this point, he adopted the regnal name Rajaraja, which means "King among Kings".[18]

Military conquests

Chola empire during the reign of Rajaraja I

When Rajaraja came into power, he inherited a kingdom that was only centered around the Thanjavur-Tiruchirappalli region, which was the heart of traditional Chola territory.[1] However, this kingdom was not very large, and it was still recovering from attacks by the Rashtrakutas in previous years. Rajaraja changed this by transforming the kingdom into a well-organized empire with a powerful army and navy. Under his rule, the northern kingdom of Vengi became closely allied with the Cholas, and their influence expanded along the eastern coast all the way up to Kalinga in the north. [2]

In the Thanjavur inscriptions, various regiments are noted. These regiments were organized into units of elephants, cavalry, and infantry. Each of these units operated independently and had the authority to give gifts or construct temples as they saw fit.[19][20]

Against Kandalur Salai

Inscription of Rajaraja in Suchindram, near Kanyakumari

Rajaraja's earliest inscriptions commemorate a significant triumph at Kandalur Salai, located in present-day Kerala, around 988 CE. He is acclaimed as "Kāndalūr śālai Kalam-arutta," which translates to 'the one who destroyed Kandalur Salai.'.[21]

He is hailed as "Kāndalūr śālai Kalam-arutta," meaning 'the one who destroyed Kandalur Salai.'[citation needed] Originally, this area was under the control of the Ay chief, who served as a vassal to the Pandya king of Madurai. However, it remains uncertain whether warriors from the Chera or Pandya dynasties were involved in this conflict.[22] The Thiruvalangadu inscription suggests that Rajaraja's general captured Vizhinjam (Viḷinam), which could have been part of the Kandalur Salai campaign. It appears that this engagement involved the Chola navy, or possibly a joint operation involving both the navy and the army.[22]

Conquest of Kerala and the Pandyas


Rajaraja's inscriptions begin to appear in Kanyakumari district in the 990s and in Thiruvananthapuram district in the early 1000s. The Chola subjugation of Kerala can be dated to the early years of the 11th century.[22] The Senur inscription dated to 1005 CE, attributed to Rajaraja, records his military achievements. It mentions the destruction of the Pandya capital, Madurai, as well as the conquest of several regions. These include defeating the formidable rulers of Kollam (Venad), Kolla-desham (Mushika), and Kodungallur (the Chera Perumals of Makotai).[22][23][full citation needed]Certain triumphs in the region of Malainadu were possibly achieved by Prince Rajendra Chola I on behalf of his father, Rajaraja Chola.[24]

Following his victory over the Pandyas, Rajaraja assumed the title of Pandya Kulashani, which translates to 'Thunderbolt to the Race of the Pandyas.' As a result of his conquest, the territory of the Pandyas became recognized as "Rajaraja Mandalam" or "Rajaraja Pandinadu."[25] When recounting Rajaraja's military expedition in Trisanku Kastha (the southern region), the Thiruvalangadu Grant of Rajendra I mentions the capture of a certain royal figure named Amarabhujanga. [26] However, the specific identity of this individual—whether he was a prince of the Pandya dynasty, a general serving the Pandya king, or a prince of the Kongu Chera dynasty—remains a matter of debate and has not been conclusively resolved.[24][26] According to the Kongu Desa Rajakkal, a historical record of the Kongu Nadu region, it is suggested that this general eventually changed his loyalty to Rajaraja. He is said to have participated in the ritual of kanakabhisheka, where gold is poured over the Chola king, symbolizing an act of royal anointment or coronation.[26]

Once Rajaraja had consolidated his authority in the southern regions, he took on the title of Mummudi Chola. This title, which means "three Crowned," symbolized his power over three important Tamil kingdoms: the Cholas, the Pandyas, and the Cheras.[1]

Conquest of Sri Lanka

The remains of a Shiva temple, erected subsequent to Rajaraja's capture of Polonnaruwa and its renaming to Jananathamangalam, indicate the Chola emperor's conquest in the region.

During the reign of King Mahinda V, the Sinhalese kingdom of Anuradhapura experienced a significant military revolt around the year 982 AD, primarily as a consequence of the monarch's economic policies. The armed forces of the Anuradhapura capital predominantly consisted of Tamil mercenaries recruited from coastal regions. By 882 CE, tensions escalated into a full-fledged uprising led by these mercenaries, resulting in a protracted civil conflict. The ensuing turmoil compelled the vulnerable Sinhala ruler to seek refuge in the Rohana principality, thereby plunging the capital city of Anuradhapura into an extended period of civil unrest lasting approximately eleven years, marked by widespread disorder and lawlessness. [27][28]

The disruption of central governance exacerbated the financial strain on the kingdom, particularly in meeting the obligations to the Tamil mercenaries. Consequently, the mercenaries, feeling aggrieved and disillusioned, turned their allegiance towards the Chola empire. This strategic shift left Anuradhapura vulnerable to the incursions of the Chola forces, who exploited the internal strife to mount invasions in the year 993. These events, documented in historical sources, underscore the intricate interplay of economic policies, military dynamics, and regional power struggles during this period in the history of Anuradhapura. [27][28]

In 993 CE, Rajaraja achieved the conquest of Anuradhapura, known as Pihiti rata in local context, situated in Sri Lanka.[23] This territory was subsequently designated as Ila-mandalam in Chola historical records.[23] The military campaign led to the sacking of Anuradhapura by the Chola army, resulting in the acquisition of the northern portion of Sri Lanka by the Chola empire. As part of their administrative efforts, the Cholas established a provincial capital at the strategic military outpost of Polonnaruwa, renaming it Jananathamangalam in honor of Rajaraja's title.[28]

Under Chola administration, the official Tali Kumaran oversaw the construction of a significant Shiva temple known as Rajarajeshwara, meaning "Lord of Rajaraja," within the town of Mahatirtha, now recognized as modern-day Mantota. Consequently, Mahatirtha was renamed Rajarajapura in commemoration of the Chola monarch's conquest and establishment of authority in the region.[28]

To commemorate their victory, the Chola administrator Tali Kumaran supervised the construction of a notable Shiva temple named Rajarajeshwara, signifying "Lord of Rajaraja," within the precincts of Mahatirtha. Presently acknowledged as modern Mantota, this temple assumed a pivotal role as a representation of Chola hegemony and religious fervor. The transformation of Mahatirtha into Rajarajapura, in homage to the Chola sovereign, further underscores the symbolic and cultural import of the Chola conquest of Anuradhapura and their subsequent governance in the northern expanse of Sri Lanka.[citation needed]

The Thiruvalangadu Plates directly compare Raja Raja's campaign to the invasion of Lanka by the legendary hero Rama:

"Rama built with the aid of monkeys, a causeway across the sea, and then with great difficulties defeated the king of Lanka using sharp-edged arrows. But Rama was excelled by this king whose powerful army crossed the ocean by ships and burnt up the king of Lanka."

— Thiruvalangadu Copper Plates[1]

In 1017 CE, Rajaraja's successor, Rajendra I, finalized the Chola conquest of Sri Lanka.[29] The Chola reign over Sri Lanka persisted until 1070, when Vijayabahu I successfully vanquished and expelled them from the island.[30]

Chalukyan conflict


In 998 CE, Rajaraja annexed Gangapadi, Nolambapadi, and Tadigaipadi (present-day Karnataka).[31] During this campaign, Raja Chola subdued the Nolambas, who were previously vassals of the Ganga dynasty.[32][33] These territories were initially under the suzerainty of the Rashtrakutas, who had been defeated by the Western Chalukyas in 973 CE. Consequently, the Cholas found themselves in direct conflict with the Chalukyas.[34] An inscription of Irivabedanga Satyashraya from Dharwar describes him as a vassal of the Western Chalukyas and acknowledges the Chola onslaught.[35]

An inscription attributed to Irivabedanga Satyashraya from Dharwar acknowledges his allegiance to the Western Chalukyas and highlights the Chola incursion. He accuses Rajendra Chola of leading a massive force of 955,000 soldiers and causing havoc in Donuwara, blurring the ethical boundaries of warfare prescribed by the Dharmasastras.[36] Historians such as James Heitzman and Wolfgang Schenkluhn interpret this confrontation as indicative of personal animosity between the rulers of the Chola and Chalukya kingdoms, akin to historical conflicts between the Chalukyas of Badami and the Pallavas of Kanchi.[37][38]

By the year 1004 CE, Rajaraja had successfully conquered the Gangavadi province.[39] He established control over the western part of Gangavadi, ruled by the Changalvas, and over Kodagu, governed by the Kongalvas, who were then made vassals of the Chola Empire.[40] Panchavan Maraya, a Chola general, played a significant role in defeating the Changalvas in the battle of Ponnasoge and was duly rewarded with the territory of Arkalgud Yelusuvira-7000 and the esteemed title of Kshatriyasikhamani.[41] Similarly, in recognition of the valor displayed by Manya, a Kongalva leader, the estate of Malambi (Coorg) was granted to them, along with the title of Kshatriyasikhamani.[40]

Meanwhile, the Vengi kingdom was under the rule of Jata Choda Bhima, a member of the Eastern Chalukyas Dynasty.[40] However, Rajaraja emerged victorious in battle against Bhima, and Saktivarman was appointed as a viceroy under the Chola Dynasty.[34][42] Despite a brief period of Bhima's recapture of Kanchi in 1001 CE, Rajaraja swiftly restored Saktivarman to power, even expelling and eliminating an Andhra king named Bhima.[43] Notably, Rajaraja cemented an alliance between the Chola Dynasty and the Eastern Chalukya Kingdom by arranging the marriage of his daughter, Kundavai, to the next viceroy of Vengi, Vimaladitya. This strategic union ensured the future succession of Rajaraja's descendants to the throne of the Eastern Chalukya Kingdom.[42]

Hoysala conflicts


There were hostile encounters between the Cholas and the Hoysalas, a group who were vassals of the Western Chalukyas.[citation needed] An inscription from the Gopalakrishna temple at Narasipur, dated to 1006, records that Rajaraja's general Aprameya killed Hoysala generals and a minister identified as Naganna.[44] Additionally, a similar inscription in Channapatna describes Rajaraja defeating the Hoysalas.[45]

Kalinga conquest


The invasion of the kingdom of Kalinga occurred after the conquest of Vengi.[46] This conquest marked the northern boundary of the Chola Empire at that time and established their control over the entirety of South and South-East India.[citation needed]

Conquest of Kuda-malai-nadu


In multiple historical accounts, there are mentions of King Rajaraja's conquest of a place called "Kuda-malai-nadu" around the year 1000 CE.[8][47] In certain inscriptions found in Karnataka, the term "Kudagu-malai-nadu" is used instead of "Kuda-malai-nadu." Scholars generally believe that this region corresponds to Coorg (Kudagu).[8][48]

The king's conquest of Malainadu is described in the Vikrama Chola Ula, where it is said that he achieved it in just one day, crossing 18 mountain passes.[8] According to the Kulottunga Chola Ula, King Rajaraja was depicted as beheading 18 people and burning down Udagai. [49] Additionally, the Kalingathupparani references the establishment of Chadaya Nalvizha in Udiyar Mandalam, the seizure of Udagai, and the plundering of several elephants from the area.[8] The Tiruppalanam inscription from 999 CE records the king's offering of an idol obtained as spoils from Malainadu.[8][50][51][52]


"A naval campaign led to the conquest of the Maldive Islands, the Malabar Coast, and northern Sri Lanka, all of which were essential to the Chola control over trade with Southeast Asia and with Arabia and eastern Africa. These were the transit areas, ports of call for the Arab traders and ships to Southeast Asia and China, which were the source of the valuable spices sold at a high profit to Europe."

— Romila Thapar, "Encyclopaedia Britannica".

One of the last conquests of Rajaraja was the naval conquest of the islands of Maldives ("the Ancient Islands of the Sea Numbering 1200").[53][8] The naval campaign was a demonstration of the Chola naval power in the Indian Ocean.[8]

The Cholas controlled the area around Bay of Bengal with Nagapattinam as the main port. The Chola Navy also played a major role in the invasion of Sri Lanka.[54] The success of Rajaraja allowed his son Rajendra Chola to lead the Chola invasion of Srivijaya, carrying out naval raids in South-East Asia and briefly occupying Kadaram.[5][55]

Personal life


Rajaraja married several women, including the following: Vanathi aka Thiripuvāna Mādēviyār, Dantisakti Vitanki aka Lokamadevi, Panchavan Madeviyar, Chola Mahadevi, Trailokya Mahadevi, Lata Mahadevi, Prithvi Mahadevi, Meenavan Mahadevi, Viranarayani and Villavan Mahadevi.[56][57][58] He had at least three daughters and two sons. The older son, Rajendra, was born to Thiripuvāna Mādēviyār.[59][60][61] The younger son was named Araiyan Rajarajan, and the identiey of his mother is unknown.[citation needed] He had his first daughter Kundavai with Lokamadev who eventually married Chalukya prince Vimaladithan.[citation needed] Rajaraja had two other daughters.[citation needed]. Rajaraja died in 1014 CE in the Tamil month of Maka and was succeeded by Rajendra Chola I.[62]


Imperial Coin of Chola King Rajaraja I (985-1014 CE). Uncertain Tamilnadu mint. Legend "Chola, conqueror of the Gangas" in Tamil, seated tiger with two fish.
Imperial Seal of Rajaraja I

Before the reign of Rajaraja I, portions of the Chola territory were ruled by hereditary lords and princes who were in a loose alliance with the Chola rulers.[63] Rajaraja initiated a project of land survey and assessment in 1000 CE which led to the reorganization of the empire into units known as valanadus.[11][12] From the reign of Rajaraja I until the reign of Vikrama Chola in 1133 CE, the hereditary lords and local princes were either replaced or turned into dependent officials.[63] This led to the king exercising closer control over the different parts of the empire.[63] Rajaraja strengthened the local self-governments and installed a system of audit and control by which the village assemblies and other public bodies were held to account while retaining their autonomy.[64][65][66] To promote trade, he sent the first Chola mission to China.[67] Furthermore, his elder sister Kundavai assisted him in the administration and management of temples.[68]


Mural depicting Rajaraja and his guru Karuvuruvar found in the Brihadisvara temple, Tamil Nadu, 11th century.[69][70]

Rajendra Chola I was appointed as a co-regent towards the end of Rajaraja's reign. He held the position of supreme commander over the northern and northwestern territories. Under Raja Chola's rule, there was a notable expansion of the administrative system, resulting in a greater number of offices and officials documented in Chola records compared to previous eras.[11] Villavan Muvendavelan, one of the top officials of Rajaraja figures in many of his inscriptions.[71] The names of other officials found in the inscriptions are the Bana prince Narasimhavarman, a general Senapathi Krishnan Raman, the Samanta chief Vallavaraiyan Vandiyadevan, the revenue official Irayiravan Pallavarayan and Kuruvan Ulagalandan, who organised the country-wide land surveys.[72]

Religious policy


Rajaraja was a follower of Shaivism sect of Hinduism but he also dedicated several temples to Vishnu.[citation needed]

The Chudamani Vihara, a Buddhist monastery, was constructed in the 11th century CE in Nagapattinam. It was named Chudamani or Chulamani Vihara after King Sri Mara's father. The monastery was built by the Sailendra king of Srivijaya, Sri Mara Vijayattungavarman, with the support of Rajaraja I.[73][74][75] According to the small Leyden grant, this Vihara was known as Rajaraja-perumpalli during the reign of Kulottunga I.[76] Rajaraja dedicated the proceeds of the revenue from the village of Anaimangalam towards the upkeep of this Vihara.[77]

Rajaraja called himself Shivapada Shekhara (IAST: Śivapāda Śekhara), literally, "the one who places his crown at the feet of Shiva".[78]

Arts and architecture

Bronze Sculpture of Rajaraja

Rajaraja embarked on a mission to recover the hymns after hearing short excerpts of Thevaram in his court.[79] He sought the help of Nambi Andar Nambi.[80] It is believed that by divine intervention Nambi found the presence of scripts, in the form of cadijam leaves half eaten by white ants in a chamber inside the second precinct in Thillai Nataraja Temple, Chidambaram.[81][80] The brahmanas (Dikshitars) in the temple opposed the mission, but Rajaraja intervened by consecrating the images of the saint-poets through the streets of Chidambaram.[81][82] Rajaraja thus became known as Tirumurai Kanda Cholan meaning one who saved the Tirumurai. In his work Nambiyandar Nambi Puranam alias Tirumurai Kanda Puranam, Nambi identifies his patron as Rasarasamannan-Abhayakula-sekharan, that is king Rajaraja, the best of the race of Abhaya.[83] At that time, Shiva temples only had images of god forms, but after the advent of Rajaraja, the images of the Nayanar saints were also placed inside the temple.[82] Nambi organized the hymns of three saint poets—Sambandar, Appar, and Sundarar—as the first seven books. He included Manickavasagar's Tirukovayar and Tiruvacakam as the 8th book, and the hymns of nine other saints as the 9th book. The Tirumandiram of Tirumular was designated as the 10th book, while 40 hymns by 12 other poets constituted the 11th book. Additionally, Nambi added Tirutotanar Tiruvanthathi, the sacred anthathi of the labors of the 63 nayanar saints, along with his own hymns as the 12th book.[84] The initial seven books were later recognized as Tevaram.[84] With the addition of Sekkizhar's Periya Puranam (1135) as the twelfth book, the entire Saiva canon became known as Tirumurai, the holy scripture. Consequently, Saiva literature now encompasses approximately 600 years of religious, philosophical, and literary development.[84]

There are no existing contemporary portraits or statues of Rajaraja. The bronze figure purportedly depicting him at the Thanjavur temple is spurious and of recent origin.[23]

Brihadisvara Temple

Brihadisvara Temple built by Rajaraja I, a UNESCO World Heritage Site

During 1010 CE, Rajaraja built the Brihadisvara Temple in Thanjavur and dedicated it to Lord Shiva. The temple, also known as Periya Kovil, RajaRajeswara Temple and Rajarajeswaram, and the capital were centres of both religious and economic activity.[85] [86][87] The temple, which turned 1000 years old in 2010, is one of the largest temples in India and is an example of Dravidian architecture of the Chola period.[88] [89] Along with Gangaikonda Cholapuram temple and Airavatesvara temple, Brihadisvara is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site known as the "Great Living Chola Temples".[90]

The temple tower, called the vimanam, stands at a remarkable height of 216 feet (66 meters), making it the tallest in the world. At the very top sits the Kumbam, a bulbous structure, which is carved entirely from a single rock and weighs approximately 80 tons.[91] At the entrance stands a sizable statue of Nandi, the sacred bull, carved from a single rock, measuring about 16 feet in length and 13 feet in height. The entire temple structure is crafted from granite, obtained from sources located approximately 60 kilometers to the west of the temple. This temple is widely renowned as one of the premier tourist attractions in Tamil Nadu.[92]


Copper Coin or Rajaraja I

Prior to Rajaraja's reign, Chola coins featured the tiger emblem on the obverse, along with the fish and bow emblems representing the Pandya and Chera Dynasties, while the reverse side displayed the name of the King. However, a new type of coin emerged during Rajaraja's rule. These new coins showcased the figure of the standing king on the obverse side, while the reverse side depicted a seated goddess.[93] The coins spread across much of southern India and were copied by Sri Lankan kings.[94]


A typical lithic inscription of the Chola period

Due to Rajaraja's desire to record his military achievements, he recorded the important events of his life in stone. An inscription in Tamil from Mulbagal in Karnataka shows his accomplishments as early as the 19th year. An excerpt from such a Meikeerthi, an inscription recording great accomplishments, follows:[95]

Hail Prosperity! In the 21st year of (the reign of) the illustrious Ko Raja Rajakesari Varma, alias the illustrious Rajaraja Deva, who, while both the goddess of fortune and the great goddess of the earth, who had become his exclusive property, gave him pleasure, was pleased to destroy the kalam at Kandalur and conquered by his army, which was victorious in great battles, Vengai-nadu, Ganga-padi, Nulamba-padi, Tadigai-padi, Kudamalai-nadu, Kollam, Kalingam and Ira-mandalam, which is famed in the eight directions; who, while his beauty was increasing, and while he was resplendent (to such an extent) that he was always worthy to be worshipped, deprived the Seriyas of their splendour, and (in words) in the twenty-first year of Chola Arumoli, who possesses the river Ponni, whose waters are full of waves.[96][97]

ஸ்வஸ்திஸ்ரீ் திருமகள் போல பெருநில
பெருநிலச் செல்வியுந் தனக்கேயுரிமை
கேயுரிமை பூண்டமை மனக்கொளக்
காந்தளூர்ச் சாலைக் களமறூத்தருளி வேங்கை
உடையார் ஸ்ரீராஜராஜ
Excerpts of Rajaraja's inscription from Brihadisvara Temple in Thanjavur (first line in every image)

Rajaraja recorded all the grants made to the Thanjavur temple and his achievements. He also preserved the records of his predecessors. An inscription of his reign found at Tirumalavadi records an order of the king to the effect that the central shrine of the Vaidyanatha temple at the place should be rebuilt and that, before pulling down the walls, the inscriptions engraved on them should be copied in a book. The records were subsequently re-engraved on the walls from the book after the rebuilding was finished.[98]

Another inscription from the Gramardhanathesvara temple in the southern area of Arcot, dating back to the seventh year of the king, mentions the fifteenth year of his predecessor, Uttama Choladeva. Uttama Choladeva is described in the inscription as the son of Sembiyan-Madeviyar.[99]

20th Century Sculpture of Rajaraja in Thanjavur.

See also



  1. ^ a b c d e f Vidya Dehejia 1990, p. 51.
  2. ^ a b c d e K. A. N. Sastri 1992, p. 1.
  3. ^ Charles Hubert Biddulph (1964). Coins of the Cholas. Numismatic Society of India. p. 34.
  4. ^ John Man (1999). Atlas of the year 1000. Harvard University Press. p. 104. ISBN 978-0-674-54187-0.
  5. ^ a b Sen, Sailendra (2013). A Textbook of Medieval Indian History. Primus Books. pp. 46–49. ISBN 978-9-38060-734-4.
  6. ^ a b A Journey through India's Past by Chandra Mauli Mani p.51
  7. ^ Columbia Chronologies of Asian History and Culture by John Bowman p.264
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h M. G. S. Narayanan 2013, p. 115-117.
  9. ^ The Hindus: An Alternative History by Wendy Doniger, p. 347.
  10. ^ Indian Thought: A Critical Survey by K. Damodaran, p. 246.
  11. ^ a b c A History of Ancient and Early Medieval India: From the Stone Age to the 12th century by Upinder Singh, p. 590.
  12. ^ a b Administrative System in India: Vedic Age to 1947 by U. B. Singh, p. 76.
  13. ^ Vidya Dehejia 2009, p. 42.
  14. ^ A. K. Seshadri 1998, p. 31.
  15. ^ Tamil Civilization: Quarterly Research Journal of the Tamil University. Vol. 3. Tamil University. 1985. pp. 40–41.
  16. ^ "Why Tamil Nadu Celebrating King Raja Raja Chola's Birthday Is A Masterstroke In Symbolism". 2 November 2022.
  17. ^ A. K. Seshadri 1998, p. 32.
  18. ^ Vidya Dehejia 1990, p. 49.
  19. ^ Seshachandrika: a compendium of Dr. M. Seshadri's works p.265
  20. ^ Literary Genetics with Comparative Perspectives by Katir Makātēvan̲ p.25
  21. ^ S.R. Balasubrahmanyam 1977, p. 3.
  22. ^ a b c d M. G. S. Narayanan 2013, pp. 115–118.
  23. ^ a b c d K. A. N. Sastri 1992, p. 2.
  24. ^ a b M. G. S. Narayanan 2013, pp. 115–117.
  25. ^ K. A. N. Sastri 1992, p. 238.
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Preceded by Rajaraja I
Succeeded by