M V Ramarao is a High School feature writer with a Bachelor of Technology degree in Smart manufacturing.
For many centuries, Several kings ruled different regions of India. India turned out as a great kingdom in hands of many great Kings and Queens. But we talk only about a few.
In this article, I will explore some great unsung kings and Queens of India.
Rani Kittur Chennamma
She is the queen of Kittur. She was known for the 1824 revolt against the British East India Company. Many people say that the first queen who fought with Britishers for freedom is Jhansi Rani Lakshmi Bhai. But many people don't know that Kittur Chennamma fought with Britishers before Jhansi Rani Lakshmi Bhai.
Chennamma is 56 years older than Lakshmi Bhai. She was born in Kakati village which is near Kittur. She took training in horse riding, archery and sword fighting from a young age.
She married Malla Sarjan (King of Kittur) and became queen after her husband and son demise in 1824.
Following their deaths, Queen Chennamma adopted Shivalingappa and made him the successor to the throne. This enraged the Britishers, who ordered Shivalingappa’s removal based on the Doctrine of Lapse.
This doctrine states that in case the ruler of any independent state died childless, the right of ruling the State will be returned to the British Government.
Chennamma sent a letter to Lieutenant-Governor of the Bombay Presidency imploring her cause, but the request was turned down, and they started the war.
Rani Chennamma fought ferociously but was ultimately captured and imprisoned at Bailhongal Fort, where she died on 2 February 1829.
Chennamma's legacy is still honoured in Kittur, during the Kittur Utsav held on 22–24 October yearly.
King Harsha Vardhana
The last Hindu emperor who ruled the Staneshwaram Kingdom (Part of Haryana) is Harsha Vardhana. Except for Kashmir, all kingdoms in North India lies in the hands of Harsha Vardhana.
Sindh, Vallabi, Gujarat and Saurashtra were occupied by Harsha Vardhana during that time.
He is not only a great emperor but also a great poet. In his Kingdom, poets and artists have a special status.
Harsha Vardhana spends one-fourth of his earnings on poets and artists. He gives more preference to the persons who have skills.
Nagananda, Ratnavali, Priyadarshika are some of the plays written by King Harsha Vardhana.
Nalanda, Vallabhi are developed Under the auspices of King Harsha Vardhana.
King Mahendra Varma 1
Mahendra Varma 1 belongs to the 7th century. He was a Pallava king who ruled most of the part of Tamilnadu. He is specialized in both arts and sword fighting. He is an artist, musician, scholar, architect and astrologist.
His father Sinha Vishnu Maharaj defeated Kalapara's ( Belongs to Jain Dynasty ) and occupied Kalapara's kingdom. Later his father improved Pallava's arts by learning from Jain's ( Mostly Sculptural art ).
After his father, Mahendra Varma 1 also improved this sculptural art and applied them in the construction field. Mahabalipuram Lighthouse, rock-cut temples, Kanchi University were built under the auspices of Mahendra Varma 1.
He believes in Jainism a lot. After the war with Pulakesi's ( Chalukya Kings ), Mahendra Varma lost some part of his kingdom. Then, his son Narasimha Varma executed his brilliant plan on Pulakesi's and defeated them in war.
After the war, not only they regained the lost part of his kingdom but also occupied Badhami (Chalukya's Capital City).
Durgavati was the ruling queen of the Gondwana Kingdom. She defeated Akbar's army for her kingdom. Her father name is Kiratray (belongs to the 16th century). He was the first bandelkar king.
She was married to Dalpat Shah, who is the king of the Gondwana kingdom. After their marriage, Dalpat Shah neglected the ruling of the Gondwana kingdom. She gave birth to Vir Narayan in 1545.
Dalpat Shah died in 1550 and due to the young age of Vir Narayan, Durgavati started ruling the Gond kingdom.
In 1564, to occupy the Durgavati's Kingdom, Akbar sent Asaf Khan to defeat Durgavati. She did fierce fighting with the Asaf Khan army and defeated them. In that war, she lost her son Vir Narayan and also got injured severely.
After winning that war, due to severe injuries, she protrudes herself and got heroic death.
Still today in Jabalpur, at Queen Durgavati's tomb, Locals hear a scary battle cry.
Durgavati Fort also called Madan Mahal which stands as the world's smallest fort. This fort was built in the 11th century by Madan Shah. Gond's started their ruling from this fort. Durgavati uses this fort as a Watchtower.
In 1983, the Indian government renamed Jabalpur University to Rani Durgavati Vishwavidyalaya. They also released a postal stamp on her name.
King Vijayalaya Chola
Vijayalaya Chola found the imperial Chola Empire. He was the king of South India. Vijayalaya Chola used the opportunity in a war between Pallava's and Pandya's and captured Thanjavur.
However, there is no evidence to prove the claim regarding his beginnings.
For a very long time, historians could not trace the parentage of Vijayalaya Chola, who is considered to be the founder of the Chola dynasty.
However, in recent times, historians believe that Vijayalaya Chola belongs to the Telugu Cholas family.
Vijayalaya Chola captured Thanjavur from Elango Mutharaiyar who stand as the final ruler of the Mutharaiyar dynasty. At a later stage, Cholas became so powerful that the Pallavas were also wiped out from the Thanjavur region.
© 2021 M V Ramarao
M V Ramarao (author) from Telangana, India on May 18, 2021:
Thanks for the comment Riya Bindra. It means a lot !!
Riya Bindra from Yamunanagar on May 18, 2021:
Informative. Nicely written.