Chola Dynasty

The Chola Dynasty was a Tamil dynasty, flourished in South India. It was one amongst the most potent and historically important ancient dynasties ever flourished in the parts of southern India and was comparable to theChalukyas, the Pandyas and the Pallavas. In some areas it has also been the longest ruling empire.
The Chola Dynasty primarily flourished between the timeframe of latter half of the ninth century and the beginning of the thirteenth century. During this timeframe, for about two centuries, the Chola rulers were able to unite the entire country south of Tungabhadra and rule these lands as a single state. Under the reign of Rajaraja Chola-I and his immediate successor and son Rajendra Chola-I, the dynasty became supreme in terms of economy, military and culture, not only in India but in the whole of South and South-east Asia.
At its peak, the Chola Empire was not even confined to the maritime boundaries of India. Between 1010 and 1200 AD, the Chola Empire stretched from the bank of river Godavari in the north to the islands of Maldives in the south. Rajaraja Chola successfully conquered the whole of peninsular South India, islands of Maldives and some parts of Sri Lanka while his son and immediate successor, Rajendra Chola, was able to expand the boundaries of the Chola Empire to the northern parts of India. Rajendra Chola stretched the empire’s territory till river Ganga in the north, by defeating the Pala ruler of Pataliputra, Mahipala. He is also known to have invaded the kingdoms of the Malay Archipelago. However, synchronous to the rise in the power of the Pandyas the power of the later Chola rulersdeclined and in the beginning of the thirteenth century, this great Tamil dynasty gradually came to an end.
The contribution of the Chola Dynasty to Tamil literature and architecture has left a lasting legacy. The Cholas were great builders and constructed temples throughout their empire. In their regime, temples were not merely a place of worship but also served as the centers for economic activities. During their rule, the empire made a remarkable progress in almost every sphere including the culture, economy and polity.

Trade during Chola Dynasty

Trade and commerce attained new heights during the reign of the Chola rulers. These rulers gave a strategic importance to the construction of roads throughout the kingdom. These roads were not only to facilitate a healthy trade but were also considered necessary for the movement of troops to repel any possible invasion.
The Chola rulers are known to have developed strong trade links with China by sending their embassies. They used ships to carry goods from Africa and West Asia to China.

Culture and Society during Chola Dynasty

During the reign of the Chola Dynasty, many developments took place which moulded the structure of then existed culture and society. Many temples were constructed across the kingdom which were not merely to worship and perform religious rituals but also as a centre for economic activities and education. Students were taught Vedas and other ancient scriptures in the courtyard of these temples.  Also, these temples were constructed in form of citadels which could be used as a safeguard by the people during an attack or invasion.
It was also during this timeframe that the Bhakti cult emerged and the Lord Shiva was worshipped as a symbol of fertility. Also, the society was divided into the Brahmins and the non-Brahmins in the Chola regime.
The period of the Chola rulers is also marked for the gradual development of some languages like Tamil, Telugu and Kannada from Sanskrit.

List of Chola Dynasty Rulers

  • Vijayalaya Chola (848 AD to 871 AD)
  • Aditya-I (871 AD to 907 AD)
  • Parantaka Chola-I (907 AD to 950 AD)
  • Gandaraditya (950 AD to 957 AD)
  • Arinjaya Chola (956 AD to 957 AD)
  • Sundara Chola (957 AD to 970 AD)
  • Uttama Chola (970 AD to 985 AD)
  • Rajaraja Chola-I (985 AD to 1014 AD)
  • Rajendra Chola-I (1012 AD to 1044 AD)
  • Rajadhiraja Chola (1018 AD to 1054 AD)
  • Rajendra Chola-I (1051 AD to 1063 AD)
  • Virarajendra Chola (1063 AD to 1070 AD)
  • Athirajendra Chola (1067 AD to 1070 AD)
  • Kulothunga Chola-I (1070 AD to 1120 AD)
  • Vikrama Chola (1118 AD to 1135 AD)
  • Kulothunga Chola-II (1133 AD to 1150 AD)
  • Rajaraja Chola-II (1146 AD to 1173 AD)
  • Rajadhiraja Chola-II (1166 AD to 1178 AD)
  • Kulothunga Chola-III (1178 AD to 1218 AD)
  • Rajaraja Chola-III (1216 AD to 1256 AD)
  • Rajendra Chola-III (1246 AD to 1279 AD)


Post a Comment

Popular Posts