Krishna deva Raya with his two wives

Written by London Swaminathan


Date: 20 NOVEMBER 2019

Time  in London – 20-54

Post No. 7240

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“Nityam nivasate lakshmiih kanyakaasu pratishtitaa”

Mahabharata – 13-11-14

“In the person of a girl, resides ever steadily  fortune as well as grace”.


“Kanyeyaam kulajivitam”

Kumarasambhava of Kalidasa , 6-63

“The girl is the very life of the family”


यत्र नार्यस्तु पूज्यन्ते रमन्ते तत्र देवता:।
यत्रैतास्तु न पूज्यन्ते सर्वास्तत्राफला: क्रिया:।

Yatra naryastu pujyante ramante tatra Devata,
yatraitaastu na pujyante sarvaastatrafalaah kriyaah

“Where Women are honoured, divinity blossoms there, and where ever women are dishonoured, all action no matter how noble it may be, remains unfruitful.”

Manu smrti 3-56 and  Mahabharata 13-45-5

We always read about kings and their victories or defeats in the history books. But behind every successful man there is a woman, they say. It is true with our ancient Hindu kings. We know that Veera Shivaji was inspired his mother Jijabhai who told him heroic Hindu tales. The inscriptions and copper plates give lot of information about the donations the queens and princesses made to the temples, to brahmin scholars, to hospitals and educational institutions. So let us recall their names and then find out their contributions. We already know the great queens who ruled certain parts of India. But there is a silent majority who are found only in inscriptions.

Here is the list –

1.Abbakka Chowta of Ullal, Tuluva Queen  – 1525- 1570- who fought with the Portuguese.

2.Vijaya bhattarika , chalukya queen – 650 ce, ruled after her husband’s death

3.Sugandha and

4.Didda – both Kashmiri queens administered extensive kingdoms – 10th and 11th centuries.

5.Akka devi, a sister of Jayasimha iii – 1025 ce

6.Mailadevi, queen of someswara 1050 ce-

7.Lakshmi devi, chief queen of vikramaditya vi

–1100 ce


8.Kurma devi – widow of king samarsi- organised forces against qutbuddin – 1195 ce

9.Karnavati, widow of rana sangha , rekindled patriotism by her inspiring speeches.

10.Jawahirbhai , another widow of rs fought and died in the battle, defending the fort.


11.Tarabhai of Kolhapur and

12.Ahalyabhai of Indore played prominent part in administration.

Andhra Pradesh

13.Ganga Devi – Queen of Kumara Kampanna; who accompanied her husband in battles up to Madurai; written Madura Vijayam in Sanskrit like a war correspondent reporting battle scenes.

14.Tirumalamba , wife of Emperor Sri Krishnadeva Raya

15.Chinnama Devi- second wife of Krishna devaraya

16.Annapurna devi- Third of Krishna devaraya

17.Jaganmohini Devi – Fourth wife of Krishna devaraya

 (Read my article Four Wives of Krishnadeva Raya; they have made donations to temples)

Tamil Nadu

18.Ranga pataakaa – Queen of Pallava King Raja Simhan

19.Vilasavati – Second Queen of Pallava King Raja Simhan

20.Mangaiyarkarasi – Wife of Pandya King Nendumaran – she re converted the entire Tamil Nadu to Saivism from Jainism

21.Sanga – wife of Nandhi Varma Pallavan

22.Dharani Muzuthu Udaiyal – Wife of king Vikrama Choza.

23.Kuntavai – Elder sister of Raja Raja Choza and wife of  Chalukya King Vimalaaditya

24.Ammangaa Devi- Daughter of Rajendra Choza and wife of Chalukya King Rararajan

25.Manakkilli – wife of Neduncheralathan and daughter of Cholza king

26.Sembian Mahadevi, wife of Kandaraditya Choza

27.Avani muzuthu udaiyaal – Wife of Rajaraja II

228.Pathuman Devi (Padma Devi) wife of King Cheralatan

29.Orattanan Sorappai (Agra Maha Devi)- Wife of Uttama Choza

30.Bhutapandiyan Devi Perngopendu , committed SATI when her husband died, in spite of ministers stopping her entering fire.

31.Vaanavan Mahaadevi- another queen of Uttama Choza

32.Loka Mahaa Devi/ Danti Sakti Vidangi – Rajarajan’s wife

33.Mukkokkizaan Adikal – Vikrama Choza’s wife

34.Maduraantaki – wife of Kulothunga I

35.Thyaagavalli – another wife of Kulothunga I

36.Ilangovenmaan – Cheran Senguttuvan’s wife

37.Ezisai Vallabhi – wife of Kulothunga Choza

38.Thyagapataakaa – Wife of Vikrama Choza

39.Choza Sikhaamani – wife of Parantaka Choza

40.Nanguuri Nangai – Mother of Parantaka

41, 42. Saththiyappa, Saangappai- Chalukya Queens captured by Rajendra Choza

(Tamil Kings had many wives like any other Indian king; Uttama Choza had five wives and had donated to temples)

(Information about Tamil Queens is available in Dr 43.R Nagaswami’s book Yaavarum Kelir).

44.Rani Mangammal of Madurai (Nayak Dynasty)

45.Rani Meenakshi of Madurai (Nayak  Dynasty)

46.Velu Nachiar of Sivgangai who fought with the British

47.Veerammal nachiar of Sivagiri Samasthana

To be continued………………………..


Veera Matha–‘Mother of Heroes’ in the Vedas and Tamil literature

Greatest of the Hindu Heroines Rani Padmini of Chittoor. When lustful Alauddin Khilgi wanted to take her she entered fire with hundreds of women to save her honour in 1303 AD.

Veera Matha–‘Mother of Heroes’ in the Vedas and Tamil literature

Rig Veda, the oldest religious book in the world, and the 2000 year old Sangam Tamil books praise Hindu women as mother of heroes- Veera Matha. They agree on one more point. They say that those who die in the battle field will go to heaven. Bhagavad Gita and Purananuru are very clear about it. Women are blessed with Vedic mantras to give birth to heroes. Lalitha Sahasranama praises Goddess Sakthi as Veera matha. Tamil poet Bharathi goes one step further and says this country will call a woman Maladi (infertile woman) only if she doesn’t give birth to heroes. This is a novel concept.

They were all forerunners to Swami Vivekananda who thundered that Fear and Cowardice are to be shunned most. He always advocated youths to go forward by quoting the Upanishad mantra, “Uhthishta, Jagratha, Prapyavaran Nibodhatha”-Arise, Awake, Stop not till the goal is reached!

Poet Kalidasa says in Kumara sambhava (Canto VII-87):

“The bride was greeted by the Creator with the words: “Blessed one, be you the mother of a Hero” (In Sanskrit : Veeraprasavaa Bavethi).

A Tamil poet puts it beautifully in a verse in Purananuru:

What a Hero’s Mother (Veera Thay in Tamil) said:

“ You stand against the pillar

Of my hut and ask me:

Where is your son?

I don’t really know.

My womb is only a lair

For that tiger.

You can see him now

Only in the battlefields” —(Purananuru Verse 86 by Kavarpendu)

(Purananauru is part of Sangam Tamil Literature. It is an anthology of 400 poems).

There a hymn in the Rig Veda praising Veera Matha:

Rig Veda: Tenth Mandala ,Hymn 86


So may Prajapati bring children forth to us; may Aryaman adorn us till old age come nigh.

Not inauspicious enter thou thy husband’s house. Bring blessings to our bipeds and quadrupeds.


Not evil eyed, no slayer of thy husband, bring weal to cattle, radiant, gentle hearted;

Loving the gods, delightful, bearing heroes, bring blessing to our quadrupeds and bipeds

Heroes go to Heaven

Krishna in Bhagavad Gita (II-37) says:

“Either slain thou shalt go to Heaven; or victorious thou shalt enjoy the earth; therefore arise, O son of Kunti, resolved on battle.

Puram verses 26, 62, 93, 287, 341, 362;PathiRRu Pathu 52 give the same message to the heroes. There are more Tamil verses where in the poets talk about kings reaching heaven after dying. There are even special funeral ceremonies conducted by Brahmins for the kings who die elsewhere. If the kings die due to natural causes Brahmins spread the dharba grass under the king’s body and cut them into pieces by saying ‘let you go to heaven where the heroes go’. Avvaiyar describes this ceremony in a praise to Athiyaman Anji (Pura Nanuru verse 93): you escaped from this ceremony because you are a hero wounded in the battle field.

All these are echoes of Kalidasa who lived a few centuries before the Sangam poets. Kalidasa sings about wounds that happened in the battle fields throughout his works. In Raghuvamasam 14-4 he says Kausalya and Sumitra were fond of the word ‘Veeramatha’. But having seen the wounds inflicted by the Rakshasas on young Rama and Lakshmana , their mothers Kausalya and Sumithra did not want to hear that sound of Veera matha.

Pictre: Rani Lakshmibhai of Jhansi was killed by the British

Slogans on the Flags

“The kings of Surya Vamsa (solar race) Raghu and Ajan took all your name and fame, but not your lives– were written with blood on the flags with arrow heads”. That is, out of mercy, Raghu and Aja let you all run alive. The interesting message Kalidasa gives in this sloka (Raghu.7-65) is that devoted workers of politicians (Kings) wrote slogans like this 2000 years ago!

So political workers writing with their blood for their leaders is nothing new!

Ascetics bless Sakuntala Veera Prasavini Bhava (Be a mother of heroes)”.

In Sakuntala 7-28,  Sakuntala was blessed by the elders:

“ With a husband the equal of The Breaker of Dark Clouds (Indra)

With a son like his son, Jayanta, no other blessing fits you but this;

Ravana was equal to Rama

Rama was so happy to meet a great hero like Ravana in the battle field, says Kalidasa in Raghu 12-89. Heroes never favour unequal fights.

Like Tamil poets Kalidasa used words like battle wounds on the chest (not on the back), wounds or injuries due to arrow and bow in the hands in several places (Raghu III-68, II-64,  18-48, 16-84, VII-65, 12-89, 13-73, 16-1).

In the Asvameda Yagna (Horse Sacrifice), Kshatriya women(Kings’ wives) have to cut the horse into pieces.

Picture of Kittoor Rani Chennamma


1.பாரதி பாடல் Bharathi Poems:

“வீரரைப் பெறாத மேன்மைதீர் மங்கையை

ஊரவர் மலடி என்று உரைத்திடு நாடு”—பாரதி


2.புறம் 86 (காவற்பெண்டு)

சிற்றில் நற்றூண் பற்றி, ‘நின் மகன்

யாண்டுள்ளனோ? என வினவுதி; என் மகன்

யாண்டு உளன் ஆயினும் அறியேன்;ஓரும்

புலி சேர்ந்து போகிய கல் அளை போல

ஈன்ற வயிறோ இதுவே;

தோன்றுவன் மாதோ, போர்க்களத்தானே!


3.Lalitha Sahsranama லலிதா சஹஸ்ரநாமா

Praneswari pranadatri panjasatpeedarupini

Visrungala vivikthasdha veeramatha viyathprasuhu:

ப்ராணேச்வரி ப்ராணதாத்ரீ பஞ்சாசத்பீடரூபினி

விஸ்ருங்கலா விவிக்தஸ்தா வீரமாதா வியத்ப்ரஸூ: