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Chapter 7- Post-Gupta Period : Vardhan Dynasty And Kingdom Of Deccan

Post Gupta Period

After the Guptan empire fell apart in the 500s AD, India had a lot of smaller kings ruling a lot of small kingdoms. There were a lot of wars among these small kingdoms, but there was also a lot of great architecture and art during this time. In northern India, King Harsha ruled one of the small kingdoms, but after he died in the 600s AD, his kingdom fell apart into three even smaller ones. During this time, southern India had bigger, more powerful kingdoms than northern India did. The most important southern kingdom was the Chola, which got rich partly by selling pepper and Cinnamon and other spices at their seaports to Arab traders who resold the spices in the Islamic states and to medieval Europe.

 Vardhan Dynasty/Pushyabhuti Dynasty


  • Founded at Thaneswar (Karnal district, Haryana) by Pushyabhuti.
  • First Important ruler was Prabhakaravardhana, he was succeeded by Rajyavardhan.

Harsha Vardhan (Ad 660- 647)
  • Beloned to Pushyabhuti family.
  • Originally belonged to Thaneshwar, but shifted to Kannauj.
  • Chinese pilgrim, Hieun Tsang visited during his reign & vardhan adopted Mahayan Buddhism. 
  • Harsha used to celebrate a solemn festival at Prayag (Allahabad), at the end of every five years.
  • Banabhatta, who adorned his court wrote Harshacharita and Kadambari.
  • Harsha himself wrote there plays, Priyadarshika, Ratnavalli, and Naganada.
  • Defeated by Pulakesin II, the great Chalukya king, on the banks of Narmada in AD 620.
  • Organised conference of buddhism
i. Kannauj Conference - Honored Tsang
ii. Allahabad Conference - gave away all his wealth
  • Harsha wrote 3 plays
i. Nagnanda
ii. Ratnavali
iii. Priyadarshika
  • "Nilopitu" - Archive of his period
  • "Bhaskera Inscription" - Carries his Signature 

Kingdom Of Deccan

The Chalukyas

Cap - Vtapi or Badami (Bijapur, Karnatka)
Founder - Jayasimha & Ramarya
Last - Kirtivarman-II

  • The Chalukyas were a great power in southern India between 6th and 8th century A.D. 
  • Pulakesin I, the first great ruler of this dynasty ascended the throne in 540 A.D. He had sons Kirtivarman and Mangalesa
  • Pulakesin II, the son of Kirtivarman, was one of the greatest ruler of the Chalukya dynasty. He ruled for almost 34 years. His greatest achievement was his victory in the defensive war against Harshavardhana.
  • However, Pulakesin was defeated and killed by the Pallava king Narasimhavarman in 642 A.D.
  • "Aihole Inscription" (Cradle of Indian Temple)- Ravikirti (A Jain Poet of Pulakesin-II)
  • "Virupaksha Temple" - Pattadakal 


Cap - Malkhed
Founder - Dantidurg
Last - Karka-II
Speaks Kannada

  • "Ellora Kailashnath Temple" built by 'Krishna-I'
  • "Elephanta Caves" (Mumbai) completed by 'Rashtrakutas'
  • "Kvirajmarg" (Kannada) - Amoghvarsa-I
  • "Parsavaudaya" - Jinasena (Guru g of Amoghvarsa)


Cap - Dwarasamudra (Karnataka)
Founder - Vishnuvardhan
Last - Ballala-IV

  • Ballala-III def by Malik Kafur
  • Built temples at Dwarasamudra & Belur
  • Writers - Nayachandra, Kanti, Raghavank, Nemichandra


Cap - Warangal (AP)
Founder - Prola-II
Last - Vinayakdeva

  • "Kohinoor Diamond" from 'Kollur' (Krishna's bank) 
  • "Thousand Pillar Temple" at Hanumankonda

Cap - Devagiri (Maharashtra)
Founder - Bhillama-V
Last - Harpala

  • "Devagiri Fort" built by them, Jama Masjid & Char minar was added into it by Delhi Sultans

Gupta 'n' Post- Gupta Dynasties And Their Founders

The Chalukyas of Vatapi
The Gangas of Talakad
The Guptas of Magadha
Shri Gupta
The Kadambas of Varanasi
The Kingdom of Gaud
The Kingdom of Thaneshwar
The Later- Guptas of Magadha- Malwa
The Maitrakas of Vallabhi
The Maukharis of Kannauj
The Pallavas of Kanchi
The Pandyas of Madurai
The Vakatas

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