The Mauryas – Inscriptions


Except Ashoka and his successor, there are no direct inscriptions from any of the Maurya king. Inscriptions of Ashoka deserve a separate study in itself, therefore these have been treated separately in this paper.

In this section, we will talk about indirect inscriptions where there is a reference to any of the Mauryan king.

Junagarh Inscription of Rudradaman (Epigraphia Indica vol VIII)

1-2 – This lake Sudarsana, from Girinagara (even a long distance?) of a structure so well joined as to rival the spur of a mountain, because all its embankments are strong, in breadth, length and height constructed without gaps as they are of stone, (clay) furnished with a natural dam (formed by?) ,and with well provided conduits, drains and means to guard against foul matter, three sections by and other favours is (now) in an excellent condition.

3-7 – This same (lake) on the first of the dark half of Margasirsha in the seventy second 72nd year of the king, the Mahakshatrapa Rudradaman whose name is repeated by the venerable, the son of and son’s son of the king, the Mahakshatrapa Lord Chashtana the taking of whose name is auspicious when by the clouds pouring with rain the earth had been converted as it were into one ocean by the excessively swollen floods of the Suvarnasikata, Palasini and other streams of mount Urjayat the dam though proper precautions (were taken), the water churned by a storm which, of a most tremendous fury befitting the end of a mundane period, tore down hilltops, trees, banks, turrets, upper stories, gates and raised places of shelter scattered, broke to pieces, (tore apart) with stones, trees, bushes and creeping plants
scattered about, was thus laid open down to the bottom of the river :By a breach four hundred and twenty cubits long, just as many broad, (and) seventy five cubits deep, all the water escaped, so that (the lake), almost like a sandy desert, (became) extremely ugly (to look at)

8 – ……for the sake of ..ordered to be made by the Vaisya Pushyagupta, the provincial governor of the Maurya king Chandragupta, adorned with conduits for Asoka the Maurya by the Yavana king Tushaspha while governing etc.

Shravana-bel-gola Inscriptions (Epigraphia Carnatica vol II)

No 31 (17-18) – Date about 650 CE – When the faith (the Jaina religion), which had greatly prospered at the time when the pair of the great sages Bhadravahu and Chandragupta shed lustre on it,
became afterwards a litle weak, the coral-lipped Santisena-muni renovated it; and, on the mountain at Velgola, having given up food and other things, became the lord of the cessation of birth.

No 64 (40) – Date 1163 CE – ……..In their line was born a storehouse of knowledge, a great muni, who, by reason of being auspicious on all sides, was famed as Bhadrabahu : the last of the Srutakevalis. His disciple, with fame
brilliant like moonlight, was Chandragupta, by whose glory the munis of his group (gana) were worshipped by the forest deities………

No 67 (54)  – Date 1129 CE – ….Say, how can the greatness be described of Bhadrabahu whose arms have grown stout by subduing the pride of the great wrestler delusion, and through thc merit of being whose disciple the renowned Chandragupta was served for a very long time by the forest deities.

No 258 (108) – Date 1432 CE – ……In his pure and famous line, adorned with the bright jewels of perfect conduct, arose on the earth the lord of ascetics Bhadrabahu, as the full moon in the milk ocean. Pre-eminent for the wealth of perfect intelligence, of brilliant perfection of conduct, breaker of the bond of larma, of a fame increased by the growth of penance, Bhadrabahu of supernatural powers lifted up here thc pure doctrine of the Siddhas beautifully composed with faultless words. Though the last of the lords of sages the Srutakevalas on earth, Bhadrabahu became the foremost leader of the learned by his exposition of the meaning of all the scriptures. His disciple was Chandragupta, who was bowed to by the chief gods on account of his perfect conduct and the faine caused by the greatness of whose severe penance spread into other worlds………..

Back to Main Page