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Updated: January 6, 2014 00:26 IST

Early Telugu inscription found

Ramesh Susarla
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The stone image of Chandrarasi of the 7th Century A.D. at Sri Kumara Bhimeswara Swamy Temple at Samarlakota. Photo: The Hindu
The stone image of Chandrarasi of the 7th Century A.D. at Sri Kumara Bhimeswara Swamy Temple at Samarlakota. Photo: The Hindu

Stone image of Chalukya king discovered in Samarlakota

The Archaeological Survey of India, Hyderabad, has come across an interesting discovery of a unique inscribed image of a king in the Sri Kumara Bhimeswara Swamy Temple premises at Samarlakota in East Godavari District.

Describing the discovery as an astounding one, Superintending Archaeologist R. Krishnaiah, told The Hindu that in a remote corner outside the ‘Pancharama’ temple, Deputy Superintending Archaeologist D. Kanna Babu identified the inscribed (in Telugu) royal image.

It was a curious discovery from the archaeological research point of view, Mr. Babu said. “This find is vital for reconstructing the cultural life of ancient Andhra; the role of kings in promoting the spiritual spheres,” he said.

The ASI team led by Mr. Babu was carrying out a scientific exploration in order to ascertain the origin, antiquity and architectural ascendancy of the temple.

This is one of the earliest inscribed images of a king discovered so far in the State and a unique one, he said. The highly eroded sand stone sculpture was 108 cm high, 42 cm wide and 22 cm thick. It is a life-size form of a imperial personality standing on a broad pedestal with characteristic gesticulations of ardent Siva gana, he said.

“The King’s sculpture had a roundish face, soft cheeks, wide open eyes, a broad heavy nose and closed lips. Ear rings, a stringed necklace and a sacred thread can be seen on the King’s sculpture,” he pointed out.

On the eroded broad pedestal there is an inscription. Basing on palaeographical grounds, Mr. Kanna Babu described this as one among very few early Telugu inscriptions belonging to the 7th Century A.D. (early Eastern Chalukya times) and stands as a testimony to antiquity of language.

When deciphered it read: ‘This is the stone image of Chandrarasi, who is in ascetic attire, brought the intellectual Kedararasi after convincing him on the event of his victory’.

Chandrarasi, probably a royal personality of this region, seems to be a patron of God Sri Kumara Bhimeswara of Samarlakota, said Mr. Kanna Babu.

Nice to hear. We are very much interested to know more about our culture
and heritage.

from:  Srikanth
Posted on: Jan 8, 2014 at 10:33 IST

Wait a second! There are several instances in this story pointing to the
antiquity of the Telugu script. Specifically, the expert pointed to 7th
century AD How could that be? Telugu and Kannada were only developed
(technically-speaking) in the 11 century AD. Now, that's where good
journalism comes into play. One expects The Hindu to be more circumspect
and also publish stuff that is thoroughly researched and vetted. For
instance, a professional process would involve taking the discovery and
the expert's comments to other experts (archaeologists, historians,
linguists, grammarians, etc) and asking for their validation and
comments. Imagine how much more richer that would be and how educative
it is for the readers!
Anyway, circling back to the subject, it would be much appreciated if
The Hindu can verify for us the noise on the dates. Thank you!

from:  Ramaiah
Posted on: Jan 7, 2014 at 21:41 IST

This is an instance to say about the greatness of telugu language and
also about south indian culture and heritage. It is clearly portraying
the Olden kings of Chalukhyas and Cholas have made magnificant efforts
in promoting the Andhra culture. Iam feeling very happy to know about
this and wish many more should happen like this. Happy New Year :).

from:  ramanujan
Posted on: Jan 7, 2014 at 10:56 IST

I love Hindu for publishing such news and also I am being from Andhra Pradesh, I am happy to see the article. Its great to hear that such significant discovery has been made that too at a time when people think there is hardly to left discover anything.

from:  Rajesh
Posted on: Jan 6, 2014 at 13:49 IST

Very interesting. Would love to know more on this and as well India and its history. It has become one of my hobbies for the past two years.

from:  Prashant
Posted on: Jan 6, 2014 at 13:34 IST

Excellent article and would love to learn about historical facts about
India. Why there are not any comments from people, usually there are
hoards of comment on political articles.

from:  Hitesh
Posted on: Jan 6, 2014 at 05:08 IST
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