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Showing posts from January 15, 2010

Medieval India

Medieval India

The Rajput period was an era of chivalry and feudalism. The Rajputs weakened each other by constant fighting. This allowed the foreigners (Turks) to embark on victorious campaigns using duplicity and deceit wherever military strength failed against Rajputs.

Mohammad Ghori defeated Prithviraj Chauhan, the Tomar ruler of Delhi, at the battle of Tarain in 1192 and left the Indian territories in the charge of his deputy, Qutubudin (reign - 1206 - 1210), who had started life as a slave. Khiljis, Tughlaqs, Sayyids and Lodis followed and this period is known as the Sultanate. When the power of the Sultans declined, the outlying provinces once again became important and the process of Hindu Islamic synthesis continued almost without any interruption.

Babur (reign - 1526-30), the founder of the Mughal Empire in India, was the descendant of Timur as well as Changez Khan. Ousted by his cousins, he came to India and defeated Ibrahim, the last Lodi Sultan in 1526 …

Somnath Temple

Somnath Temple
      India's History : Medieval India : Ghazni sacks Somnath Temple   
Ghazni sacks Somnath Temple

Somnath is about 5km from Veraval and had a checkered history. It is believed that the
Somnath temple here was originally built by Somraj, the Moon God himself, out of gold,
and then rebuilt by Ravana in silver and then by Krishna in Wood, then by Bhimdev in
stone. Somnath is also known by several other names -- Deo pattan, Prabhas Pattan or
Pattan Somnath, which it acquired during its long and eventful history. Somnath was
once the most revered shrine in the country, for it had one of the twelve pre-eminent
Jyotirlingas (the glowing Lingas), which held a special significance for the Hindus.
Somnath's glory and fame are legendary. It is said that people from the remotest
parts of the country came to worship at the shrine; revenues collected from ten
thousand villages was spent on the maintenance of the temple. Two thousand
Brahmins (priests) served the ido…

Qutab Minar

Qutab Minar

  India's History : Medieval India : Foundation of the Qutub Minar

History & Architecture

Qutub-Minar in red and buff standstone is the highest tower in India. It has a diameter of 14.32m at the base and about 2.75m on the top with a height of 72.5m.
Qutb-u'd-Din Aibak laid the foundation of Qutab Minar in AD 1199. The minar was said to have been built to celebrate the victory of Mohammed Ghori, the invader from Afghanistan, over the Rajputs in 1192. He raised the first storey, to which were added three more storeys by his successor and son-in-law, Shamsu'd-Din IItutmish (AD 1211-36). All the storeys are surrounded by a projected balcony encircling the Minar and supported by stone brackets, which are decorated with honeycomb design, more conspicuously in the first storey.
Numerous inscriptions in Arabic and Nagari characters in different places of the Minar reveal the history of Qutb. According to the inscriptions on its surface it was repaired by Firoz Shah…

Vijayanagar Kingdom

Vijayanagar Kingdom

  India's History : Medieval India : Foundation of Vijayanagar (Deccan) - 1336

The Vijaynagar KingdomAfter the departure of Muhammad bin Tughlak from the Deccan, Harihara declared independence. He and his brother Bukka I under the guidance of famous Hindu saint and the head of Sringeri Math, Vidyaranyasvami, who is also identified with the distinguished jurist Madhav Mantri, established the mighty Hindu Kingdom of Vijaynagar (the City of Victory) in 1336 AD. Vijaynagar illuminated the landscape of Deccan History for 229 years (1336-1565 AD). By 1347 AD, Malerajya and Palasige of the Goa Kadambas were incorporated into the Vijaynagar Empire. Goa formed a strategically and commercially important province on the western border of the Vijaynagar Empire. Hampi - The Capital of Vijayanagar KingdomThe first settlement in Hampi dates back to 1st century AD and a number of Buddhist sites belonging to that time have been found nearby. Hampi was the capital of the might…