Kadambas of Banavasi – The First Indigenous Dynasty from Karnataka

India’s history is so fascinating that researchers and historians from all over the world, take particular interest in studying various hidden stories from our past. Most of us would be aware of the powerful and popular dynasties that have ruled different parts of the Indian subcontinent. Right from ancient times, Janapadas like the Gupta-maurya janapada have been considered to be one of the most flourishing empires. There are some lesser-known dynasties from south India like the kadamba dynasty that many of us don’t know about. To preserve our rich traditions and cultures we need to get an idea about these unknown chapters from Indian history as well.

Kadamba Dynasty

Kadambas of Banavasi basically belonged to an ancient royal family in present-day Karnataka. They ruled over a period of several years from 345 to 525 CE. King Kakushtavarma was the most powerful king in banavasi history. Banavasi today belongs to the Uttara Karnataka district. The Kadamba dynasty was founded by Mayurasharma who defeated Pallavas of Kanchi. King Kakushtavarma was so renowned and powerful that even the Gupta Empire tried to have marital alliance with him. After a lot of wars and bloodshed, one of the later kings in the history of Banavasi – King Shivakoti, adopted Jainism. Kadambas of Banvasi later became feudatory of Chalukya and Rashtrakuta empires. Over a period of five hundred years, they split themselves into smaller dynasties like Kadambas of Goa, Kadambas of Halasi and Kadambas of Hangal. Before Bannavasi Kadambas, non-native Mauryas and Satavahanas ruled the regions, with their centres in northern India. Kadambas were the first ones in banavasi history to use Kannada as their native language for administrative purposes.  Even Vijaynagar rulers took kelp from Kadambas to manage their naval fleet in Goa.

Kadambas of banavasi is just a single chapter of Indian history. There are several other indigenous dynasties like these, which we need to learn about as true Indians.


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