Friday, April 1, 2016

Land Grants to Tamil Brahmins as per Soraikkavur Plates of Virupaksha in 1387 AD

In this article I will talks about Land Grants to Tamil Brahmins as per Soraikkavur Plates of Virupaksha in 1387 AD.

The Soraikkavur Plates of Virupaksha  (a.k.a vira viruppaNNa uDaiyar), the son of Harihara of the first Vijaynagar dynasty and records the grant of  the village of Siraikkavur together with 10.75 vrittis of adjoiing land, under the name of Vijayasundarsanapuram to 14 Brahmins of various gotras. Soraikkavur is a place near Kuttalam in the Tanjore (Thanjavur) district in Tamil Nadu.

Soraikkavur Plates of Virupaksha is dated to 20th March 1387. In 1387,  Virupaksha as a Provincial Governor, gave to fourteen Brahmins of various as sarvamanya-agrahara, the village of Siraikkavur (Soraikkavur) in Uyyakonda Valanadu in the Chola country, and a field of 10.75 vrittis on the outskirts of Tirupamapapuram, including all taxes, and including any hidden treasure, deposits, water, stones, permanent profits, future profits, established income and feasible income.

Apart for its usual historic value, the Soraikkavur plate's importance lies in the fact that it clearly documents the migration and settlement of a Bengali Brahmana in Tamil Nadu.

The 14 Tamil Brahmins mentioned in Soraikkavur Plates
  1. Narayana Bhatta (Sanskrit:  नारायण भट्ट , Bengali: নারায়ণ ভট্ট ) Son of Udali Vinayaka Bhatta (Sanskrit:  विनायक भट्ट , Bengali: উডালি বিনায়ক ভট্ট ) of Atreya Gotra and Apastambha Sutra
  2. Govinda Bhatta (Sanskrit:  गोविन्द भट्ट , Bengali: গোবিন্দ ভট্ট ) Son of Vedagompurattu Tiruvaranga Narayana Bhatta  (Sanskrit:  वेदगोम्पुरत्तु तिरुवरङ्ग नारायण भट्ट , Bengali: বেদগোম্পুরত্তু তিরুবরঙ্গ নারায়ণ ভট্ট ) of Atreya Gotra and Apastambha Sutra
  3. Shrinarasimha Bhatta (Sanskrit:  श्रीनरसिंह भट्ट , Bengali: শ্রীনরসিংহ ভট্ট ) Son of Vedagompurattu Lakshmana Bhatta  (Sanskrit:  वेदगोम्पुरत्तु लक्ष्मण भट्ट , Bengali:  বেদগোম্পুরত্তু লক্ষ্মণ ভট্ট ) of Atreya Gotra and Apastambha Sutra
  4. Shrivasudeva Bhatta (Sanskrit:  श्रीवासुदेव भट्ट , Bengali: শ্রীবাসুদেব ভট্ট ) Son of Gomatthattu Karunakara Bhatta  (Sanskrit:  गोमट्थत्तु करुणकर भट्ट , Bengali: গোমট্থত্তু করুণকর ভট্ট ) of Kaundinya Gotra and Apastambha Sutra
  5. Devaraja Bhatta Yakshyamana (Sanskrit:  देवराज भट्ट यक्श्यमान , Bengali: দেবরাজ ভট্ট যক্ষ্য়মান ) Son of Irumadaposhan Akondavilli Somayajin (Sanskrit: इरुमडपोशन् आकोण्डविल्लि सोमयाजिन् , Bengali:  ইরুমডপোশন আকোণ্ডবিল্লি সোময়াজিন্ ) of Parasara Gotra and Apastambha Sutra
  6. Shrirangaraja Bhatta (Sanskrit:  श्रीरङ्गराज भट्ट, Bengali: শ্রীরঙ্গরাজ ভট্ট ) Son of Vangaippurattu Bhagavana Bhatta (Sanskrit: वङ्गैप्पुरत्तु भगवान भट्त , Bengali: বঙ্গৈপ্পুরত্তু ভগবান ভট্ট ) of Vatsa Gotra and Apastambha Sutra 
  7. Yagyamurti Bhatta  (Sanskrit: यज्ञमूर्ति भट्ट , Bengali: যজ্ঞমূর্তি ভট্ট ) Son of Pippirai Varadaraja Bhatta (Sanskrit: पिप्पिरै वरदराज भट्ट , Bengali: পিপ্পিরৈ বরদরাজ ভট্ট ) of Vatsa Gotra and Apastambha Sutra 
  8. Damodara Bhatta  (Sanskrit:  दामोदर भट्ट , Bengali: দামোদর ভট্ট ) Son of Urupputtura Narayana Bhatta (Sanskrit:  उरुप्पुट्टूर् नारायण भट्ट , Bengali: উরুপ্পুট্টূর নারায়ণ ভট্ট ) of Vatsa Gotra and apastambha Sutra 
  9. Shriranganatha Bhatta (Sanskrit: श्रीरङ्गनाथ भट्ट , Bengali:  )  Son of Kurovi Devaraja Bhatta (Sanskrit: कुरोवि देवराज भट्ट , Bengali:  ) of Bharadvaja Gotra and Asvalayana Sutra 
  10. Yagyatma Bhatta (Sanskrit: यज्ञत्म भट्ट  , Bengali:  ) Son of Karambichchettu Mahadeva Bhatta (Sanskrit: कारम्बिच्चेट्टु महादेव भट्ट , Bengali:  ) of Bharadvaja Gotra and Apastambha Sutra
  11. Shrinarasimha Bhatta (Sanskrit: श्रीनरसिंह भट्ट , Bengali: শ্রীনরসিংহ ভট্ট ) Son of Irungandi Devaraja Bhatta  (Sanskrit: इरुङ्गण्डि देवराज भट्ट , Bengali: ইরুঙ্গণ্ডি দেবরাজ ভট্ট ) of Samkriti Gotra and Apastambha Sutra
  12. Shriranganatha Bhatta (Sanskrit:  श्रीरङ्गनाथ भट्ट , Bengali: শ্রীরঙ্গনাথ ভট্ট ) Son of Irayura Shottai Nritaraja Bhatta (Sanskrit: इरायुर् शोट्टै नृतराज भट्ट , Bengali: ইরায়ুর শোট্টৈ নৃতরাজ ভট্ট ) of Sathamarshana Gotra and Bodhayana Sutra 
  13. Mandalapurusha Somayajin (Sanskrit: मण्डलपुरुश सोमयाजिन् , Bengali: মণ্ডলপুরুশ সোময়াজিন ) Son of Senalura Devaraja Bhatta (Sanskrit:   सेनालुर देवराज भट्ट , Bengali:  সেনালুর দেবরাজ ভট্ট ) of Vishvamitra Gotra and Bodhayana Sutra 
  14. Shriparvatanatha Bhatta  (Sanskrit:  श्रीपर्वतनाथ भट्ट , Bengali: শ্রীপর্বতনাথ ভট্ট ) Son of Gangoli Somnatha Bhatta (Sanskrit: गङ्गोलि सोम्नाथ भट्ट , Bengali: গঙ্গোলি সোম্নাথ ভট্ট ) of Savarni Gotra and Drahyayana Sutra 
A few Points to note about Soraikkavur Plates of Virupaksha
  • As is evident, most of the donees bear Vaishnava names and some of them have family names which are distinctly those of a few well known Shrivasihanava Achary Purushas. 
  • The last person mentioned in the list, Shri Parvatanatha Bhatta has a family name of Gangoli, Savarna gotra and Drahyayana Sutra which all indicates that his ancestors where Ganguly Brahmins of Bengal, and must have migrated from Bengal to Tamil Nadu at some time in the past.
    • Gangoli and Ganguly are inter-changable.
    • Even today, Bengali brahmin Ganguly's belong to Savarna gotra.
    • Drahyayana Sutra is a rare Sutra belonging to Sama Veda which was quite predominant in Bengal.
    • Thus at some time before 1387, a Bengali Brahmin of Ganguly family name must have migrated from Bengal to Thanjavur (Tanjore).

Land Grants to Tamil Brahmins as per Soraikkavur Plates of Virupaksha in 1387 AD - Map of Bengali Brahmin Migration

Global Scene in 1400 CE
  • Entire middle-east and North Africa were under Arab Muslim rule.
  • Central Asia was under Turko-Mongol Islamic rule.
  • Gutenberg had just introduced printing in Europe.
  • Under Ivan the Great, Russia was on its way to increasing its size by 3 times and prestige by 100 times.

India in 1400 CE
  • At that time around 1400 AD, Vijayanagar Kingdom was on its way to occupy full south India.
  • Reddis were ruling in Andhra.
  • Entire North India was under Islamic rule - Sindh and Punjab had been completely Islamized, North India proper was under Delhi Sultante and Bengal was under Muslim rule mostly.

-- END ---

  • Brahmin Image: Image Source -
  • Epigraphia Indica, Vol 8,  Page 306
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