Horace Hayman Wilson
Dynasties of the kings
1-2Maitreya said: —Venerable preceptor, you have explained to me the perpetual and occasional ceremonies which are to be performed by those righteous individuals who are diligent in their devotions; and you have also described to me the duties which devolve upon the several castes, and on the different orders of the human race. I have now to request you will relate to me the dynasties of the kings who have ruled over the earth.
3Parāśara said: —I will repeat to you, Maitreya, an account of the family of Manu, commencing with Brahmā, and graced by a number of religious, magnanimous, and heroic princes. Of which it is said, “The lineage of him shall never be extinct, who daily calls to mind the race of Manu, originating with Brahmā.”
4-11Listen therefore, Maitreya, to the entire series of the princes of this family, by which all sin shall be effaced. Before the evolution of the mundane egg, existed Brahmā, who was Hiraṇyagarbha, the form of that supreme Brahma which consists of Viṣṇu as identical with the Rig, Yajur, and Sāma Vedas; the primeval, uncreated cause of all worlds. From the right thumb of Brahmā was born the patriarch Dakṣa; his daughter was Aditi, who was the mother of the sun. The Manu Vaivaswata was the son of the celestial luminary; and his sons were Ikṣvāku, Nriga, Dhṛṣṭa, Śaryāti, Nariṣyanta, Prāṃśu, Nābhāga, Nediṣṭa, Karūṣa, and Pṛṣadhra. Before their birth, the Manu being desirous of sons, offered a sacrifice for that purpose to Mitra and Varuṇa; but the rite being deranged, through an irregularity of the ministering priest, a daughter, Ilā, was produced. Through the favour of the two divinities, however, her sex was changed, and she became a man, named Sudyumna. At a subsequent period, in consequence of becoming subject to the effects of a malediction once pronounced by Śiva, Sudyumna was again transformed to a woman in the vicinity of the hermitage of Budha, the son of the deity of the moon. Budha saw and espoused her and had by her a son named Purūravas. After his birth, the illustrious Ṛṣis, desirous of restoring Sudyumna to his sex, prayed to the mighty Viṣṇu, who is the essence of the four Vedas, of mind, of everything, and of nothing; and who is in the form of the sacrificial male; and through his favour Ilā once more became Sudyumna, in which character he had three sons, Utkala, Gaya, and Vinata.
12-13In consequence of his having been formerly a female, Sudyumna was excluded from any share in his paternal dominions; but his father, at the suggestion of Vaśiṣṭha, bestowed upon him the city Pratiṣṭhāna, and he gave it to Purūravas.
14-18Of the other sons of the Manu, Pṛṣadhra, in consequence of the crime of killing a cow, was degraded to the condition of a Śūdra. From Karūṣa descended the mighty warriors termed Kārūṣas (the sovereigns of the north). The son of Nediṣṭha, named Nābhāga, became a Vaiśya: his son was Bhalandana; whose son was the celebrated Vatsaprī: his son was Prānsu; whose son was Prajāni; whose son was Khanitra; whose son was the very valiant Cakṣupa; whose son was Viṃśa; whose son was Viviṃśati; whose son was Khaninetra; whose son was the powerful, wealthy, and valiant Karandhama; whose son was Avikṣi (or Avikṣit); whose son was the mighty Marutta, of whom this well known verse is recited; “There never was beheld on earth a sacrifice equal to the sacrifice of Marutta: all the implements and utensils were made of gold. Indra was intoxicated with the libations of Soma juice, and the Brahmans were enraptured with the magnificent donations they received. The winds of heaven encompassed the rite as guards, and the assembled gods attended to behold it.” Marutta was a Cakravarttī, or universal monarch: he had a son named Nariṣyanta; his son was Dama; his son was Rājyavarddhana; his son was Sudhriti; his son was Nara; his son was Kevala; his son was Bandhumat; his son was Vegavat; his son was Budha; his son was Trinavindu, who had a daughter named Ilavilā. The celestial nymph Alambuṣā becoming enamoured of Triṇavindu, bore him a son named Viśāla, by whom the city Vaisāli was founded. The son of the first king of Vaiśālī was Hemacandra; his son was Sucandra; his son was Dhūmrāśva; his son was Sriñjaya; his son was Sahadeva; his son was Kriśāśva; his son was Somadatta, who celebrated ten times the sacrifice of a horse; his son was Janamejaya; and his son was Sumati.
19These were the kings of Vaiśālī; of whom it is said, “By the favour of Triṇavindu all the monarchs of Vaiśālī were long lived, magnanimous, equitable, and valiant.”
20-21Śaryāti, the fourth son of the Manu, had a daughter named Sukanyā, who was married to the holy sage Chyavana: he had also a righteous son, called Ānartta. The son of the latter was Revata, who ruled over the country called after his father Ānartta, and dwelt at the capital denominated Kuśasthalī. The son of this prince was Raivata or Kakudmīn, the eldest of a hundred brethren. He had a very lovely daughter, and not finding any one worthy of her hand, he repaired with her to the region of Brahmā to consult the god where a fit bridegroom was to be met with. When he arrived, the quiristers Hāhā, Hūhū, and others, were singing before Brahmā; and Raivata, waiting till they had finished, imagined the ages that elapsed during their performance to be but as a moment.
22At the end of their singing, Raivata prostrated himself before Brahmā, and explained his errand. “Whom should you wish for a son-in-law?” demanded Brahmā; and the king mentioned to him various persons with whom he could be well pleased. Nodding his head gently, and graciously smiling, Brahmā said to him:
23-24“Of those whom you have named the third or fourth generation no longer survives, for many successions of ages have passed away whilst you were listening to our songsters: now upon earth the twenty-eighth great age of the present Manu is nearly finished, and the Kali period is at hand. You must therefore bestow this virgin gem upon some other husband, for you are now alone, and your friends, your ministers, servants, wife, kinsmen, armies, and treasures, have long since been swept away by the hand of time.”
25Overcome with astonishment and alarm, the Rāja then said to Brahmā, “Since I am thus circumstanced, do thou, lord, tell me unto whom the maiden shall be given:” and the creator of the world, whose throne is the lotus, thus benignantly replied to the prince, as he stood bowed and humble before him:
26“The being of whose commencement, course, and termination, we are ignorant; the unborn and omnipresent essence of all things; he whose real and infinite nature and essence we do not know—is the supreme Viṣṇu.
27He is time, made up of moments and hours and years; whose influence is the source of perpetual change. He is the universal form of all things, from birth to death. He is eternal, without name or shape.
28Through the favour of that imperishable being am I the agent of his power in creation: through his anger is Rudra the destroyer of the world: and the cause of preservation, Puruṣa, proceeds also from him.
29The unborn having assumed my person creates the world; in his own essence he provides for its duration; in the form of Rudra he devours all things; and with the body of Ananta he upholds them.
30Impersonated as Indra and the other gods he is the guardian of mankind; and as the sun and moon he disperses darkness. Taking upon himself the nature of fire he bestows warmth and maturity; and in the condition of the earth nourishes all beings.
31As one with air he gives activity to existence; and as one with water he satisfies all wants: whilst in the state of ether, associated with universal aggregation, he furnishes space for all objects.
32He is at once the creator, and that which is created; the preserver, and that which is preserved; the destroyer, and, as one with all things, that which is destroyed; and, as the indestructible, he is distinct from these three vicissitudes.
33In him is the world; he is the world; and he, the primeval self-born, is again present in the world. That mighty Viṣṇu, who is paramount over all beings, is now in a portion of himself upon the earth.
34-35That city Kuśasthalī which was formerly your capital, and rivalled the city of the immortals, is now known as Dvāraka, and there reigns a portion of that divine being in the person of Baladeva; to him, who appears as a man, present her as a wife: he is a worthy bridegroom for this excellent damsel, and she is a suitable bride for him.”
36Being thus instructed by the lotus-born divinity, Raivata returned with his daughter to earth, where he found the race of men dwindled in stature, reduced in vigour, and enfeebled in intellect.
37-39Repairing to the city of Kuśasthalī, which he found much altered, the wise monarch bestowed his unequalled daughter on the wielder of the ploughshare, whose breast was as fair and radiant as crystal. Beholding the damsel of excessively lofty height, the chief, whose banner is a palm-tree, shortened her with the end of his ploughshare, and she became his wife. Balarāma having espoused, agreeably to the ritual, Revatī, the daughter of Raivata, the king retired to the mountain Himālaya, and ended his days in devout austerities.
 The complete series of the different dynasties is found elsewhere only in the Vāyu, the Brahmāṇḍa (which is the same), the Matsya, and the Bhāgavata Purāṇas. The Brāhma P. and the Hari Vaṃśa, the Agni, Liṅga, Kūrma, and Garuḍa Purāṇas have lists of various extent, but none beyond the families of Pāṇḍu and Kṛṣṇa. The Mārkaṇḍeya contains an account of a few of the kings of the solar dynasty alone; and the Padma, of a part of the solar and lunar princes only, besides accounts of individuals. In the Rāmāyaṇa, Mahābhārata, and in the other Purāṇas, occasional short genealogies and notices of individual princes occur. In general there is a tolerable conformity, but this is not invariably the case, as we shall have occasion to observe.
 In the historical passages of all the Purāṇas in which such occur, and especially in the Viṣṇu and Vāyu, verses, apparently the fragments of a more ancient narrative, are frequently cited. It may also be noticed, as a peculiarity of this part of the Purāṇa, that the narration is in prose.
 Dakṣa is elsewhere said to have been one of the mind-born sons of Brahmā, or to have been the son of the Pracetasas: see p. 115. n. 5.
 According to the nomenclature sometimes followed, and as we shall have reason to conclude intended in this place, there are ten sons of Manu. The commentator regards them, however, as but nine, considering Nabhāga-nediṣṭa but one name, or Nediṣṭa the father of Nābhāga. The number is generally stated to be nine, although there is some variety in the names, particularly in this name, which occurs Nābhāgadiṣṭa, Nābhāgariṣṭha; and also separated, as Nābhāga, Nabhaga, or Nabhāga; Nediṣṭa, Diṣṭa, and Aṛṣṭa: the latter, as in the Kūrma, distinctly stated, ###. Again, ### Brāhma P. The commentator on the Hari Vaṃśa quotes the Vedas for Nābhāgadiṣṭa: ### but the name occurs as Nābhānediṣṭha in the Aitareya Brāhmaṇa of the Rigveda, where a story is told of his being excluded from all share of his inheritance, on the plea of his being wholly devoted to a religious life. See also As. Res. VIII. 384. The name as ordinarily written, Na-bhāga, ‘no-share,’ has nevertheless an obvious connexion with the legend. The name of Nriga is found only in our text, the Padma, and the Bhāgavata: the Vāyu has Najava. Prāṃśu is also the reading of the Vāyu and Agni, but not of the rest, which have Veṇa, Vanya, Daṇḍa, Kuśanābha or Kavi, in its place. The Mahābhārata, Adi P., p. 113, has Veṇa, Dhṛṣṇu, Nariṣyanta, Nābhāga, Ikṣvāku, Kārūṣa, Śaryāti, Ilā, Pṛṣadhra, and Nābhāgāṛṣṭa. The Padma P., in the Pātāla Khaṇḍa, says there were ‘ten,’ and names them Ikṣvāku, Nriga, Diṣṭa, Dhṛṣṭa, Karūṣa, Śaryāti, Nariṣyanta, Pṛṣadhra, Nābhāga, and Kavi.
 ‘That sacrifice being wrongly offered, through the improper invocations of the Hotri.’ It is also read ‘frustrated.’ This is rather a brief and obscure allusion to what appears to be an ancient legend, and one that has undergone various modifications. According to the Matsya, no change of sex took place in the first instance. The eldest son of Manu was Ida or Ila, whom his father appointed sovereign of the seven Dvīpas. In his progress round his dominions, Ila came to the forest of Śambhu or Śiva; entering into which, he was changed to a female, Ilā, agreeably to a promise made formerly by Śiva to Pārvatī, who had been once unseasonably broken in upon by some sages, that such a transformation should be inflicted on every male who trespassed upon the sacred grove. After a season, the brothers of Ila sought for him, and finding him thus metamorphosed, applied to Vaśiṣṭha, their father’s priest, to know the cause. He explained it to them, and directed them to worship Śiva and his bride. They did so, accordingly; and it was announced by the deities, that, upon the performance of an Aśvamedha by Ikṣvāku, Ila should become a Kimpuruṣa, named Sudyumna, and that he should be a male one month, and a female another month, alternately. The Vāyu, which is followed by most of the other authorities, states, that upon Manu’s offering their share of the sacrifice to Mitra and Varuṇa, instead of a boy, a girl was born: according to the Vedas. Manu desired her to follow him; whence her name Ilā (from ila or iḍa, ‘come’. There, however, Manu propitiates Mitra and Varuṇa, and the girl Ilā is changed into the boy Ila or Sudyumna by their favour: as the Mārkaṇḍeya. Sudyumna’s subsequent change to a female again, is told much as in the Matsya; but his being alternately male and female is not mentioned in the Vāyu any more than it is in our text. The Bhāgavata agrees in that respect with the Matsya, but it has evidently embellished the earlier part of the legend by the introduction of another character, Śraddhā, the wife of the Manu. It is said that it was by her instigation, as she was desirous of having a girl, that the ministering Brahmans altered the purpose of the rite, in consequence of which a girl, instead of a boy, was born. The similarity of the name has induced the learned author of the Origin of Pagan Idolatry to conceive that he has found the Ila of the Hindus in the Il or Ilus of the Phœnicians. “The Phœnician Il is the masculine Ila of the Hindus and Indo-Scythæ, and Ila was a title of Manu or Buddha, who was preserved in the ark at the time of the deluge:” I. 156: and he thence concludes that Ila must be Noah; whilst other circumstances in his Phœnician history identify p. 350 him with Abraham. I. 159. Again; “Ilus or Il is a regular Cuthic name of Buddha, which the Phœnicians, I have no doubt, brought with them; for Buddha or Manu, in the character of Ina, is said to have married his own daughter, who is described as the offspring of an ancient personage that was preserved in an ark at the time of the deluge.” I. 223. Now whatever connexion there may be between the names of Ila, Il, Ilus, Ilium, Ilā ‘the earth,’ and Ilos ‘slime,’ there is no very obvious resemblance between the Paurāṇik legends of Ilā and the Mosaic record; nor do the former authorize the particulars of Ina stated by Mr. Faber, on the authority probably of Col. Wilford. The Manu Satyavrata, who was preserved in the ark, is never called Ila, nor is he the father of Ilā. Buddha was not so preserved, nor is Ila ever a title of Buddha. Budha (not Buddha), the husband of Ilā, never appears as her father, nor is he a Manu, nor is she the daughter of any ancient personage preserved in an ark. There is not therefore, as far as I am aware, any circumstance in the history of Ila or Ilā which can identify either with Abraham or Noah.
 The Matsya calls the name of the third Haritāśva; the Vāyu &c., Vinatāśva; the Mārkaṇḍeya, Vinaya; and the Bhāgavata, Vimala. All but the last agree in stating that Utkala (Orissa) and Gaya in Behar are named after the two first. The Matsya calls the third the sovereign of the east, along with the Kauravas; the Vāyu makes him king of the west. The Bhāgavata calls them all three rulers of the south.
 The authorities agree in this location of Sudyumna. Pratiṣṭhāna was situated on the eastern side of the confluence of the Ganges and Jumna; the country between which rivers was the territory of the direct male descendants of Vaivaswata. In the Hari Vaasa it is said that he p. 351 reigned in Pratiṣṭhāna, having killed Dhṛṣṭaka, Ambarīṣa, and Daṇḍa. M. Langlois had no doubt 79-4: in his copy, as he renders it, ‘Il donna naissance à trois enfans;’ though, as he observes, Hamilton had called these the sons of Ikṣvāku. The Brāhma P. has not this passage, nor does the commentator on the Hari Vaṃśa give any explanation; neither does any thing of the kind occur elsewhere. We have however, subsequently in the text, Daṇḍa named as a son of Ikṣvāku; and in the Padma P., Sṛṣṭi Khaṇḍa, and in the Uttara Khaṇḍa of the Rāmāyāṇa, we have a detailed narrative of Daṇḍa, the son of Ikṣvāku, whose country was laid waste by an imprecation of Bhārgava, whose daughter that prince had violated. His kingdom became in consequence the Daṇḍaka forest. The Mahābhārata, Dāna Dharma, alludes to the same story. If therefore the preferable reading of the Hari Vaṃśa be Suta, ‘son,’ it is at variance with all other authorities. At the same time it must be admitted, that the same work is singular in asserting any collision between Daṇḍa and his brothers and Sudyumna, and the passage seems to have grown out of that careless and ignorant compilation which the Hari Vaṃśa so perpetually presents. It is not improbably a gratuitous perversion of this passage in the Matsya; ‘Ambarīṣa was the son of Nābhāga; and Dhṛṣṭa had three sons.’
 This story has been modified apparently at different periods, according to a progressive horror of the crime. Our text simply states the fact. The Vāyu says he was hungry, and not only killed, but ate the cow of his spiritual preceptor, Chyavana. In the Mārkaṇḍeya he is described as being out a hunting, and killing the cow of the father of Bābhravya, mistaking it for a Gavaya or Gayal. The Bhāgavata, as usual, improves upon the story, and says that Pṛṣadhra was appointed by his Guru Vaśiṣṭha to protect his cattle. In the night a tiger made his way into the fold, and the prince in his haste, and in the dark, killed the cow upon which he had fastened, instead of the tiger. In all the authorities the effect is the same, and the imprecation of the offended sage degraded Pṛṣadhra to the caste of a Śūdra. According to the Bhāgavata, the prince led a life of devotion, and perishing in the flame of a forest, obtained final liberation. The obvious purport of this legend, and of some that follow, is to account for the origin of the different castes from one common ancestor.
 The Bhāgavata also places the Kārūṣas in the north; but the country of the Kārūṣas is usually placed upon the Parīpātra or Vindhya mountains (see p. 186. n. 13).
 The Vāyu has Nābhāga, the son of Aṛṣṭa; the Mārkaṇḍeya has, the son of Diṣṭa; the Bhāgavata also calls him the son of Diṣṭa. According to that authority, he became a Vaiśya by his actions. The other Purāṇas generally agree that the descendants of this person became Vaiśyas; but the Matsya and Vāyu do not notice it. The Mārkaṇḍeya details a story of Nābhāga’s carrying off and marrying the daughter of a Vaiśya; in consequence of which he was degraded, it is said, to the same caste, and deprived of his share of the patrimonial sovereignty, which his son and successor recovered. The Brāhma P. and Hari Vaṃśa assert that two sons of Nābhāgāṛṣṭa again became Brahmans; but the duties of royalty imply the Kṣatriya caste of his posterity; and the commentator on our text observes that the son of Nābhāga was born before his father’s degradation, and consequently the race continued Kṣatriya; an assertion unsupported by any authority, and it must therefore appear that .a race of Vaiśya princes was recognised by early traditions.
 Bhanandana: Bhāgavata.
 Vatsaprīti: Bhāgavata. Vatsasrī: Mārkaṇḍeya. The latter has a story of the destruction of the Daitya Kujāmbha by Vidūratha, the father of Sunandā, the wife a of Vatsasrī. The Vāyu has Sahasrāri.
 Pramati: Bhāgavata.
 According to the Mārkaṇḍeya, the priests of the royal family conspired against this prince, and were put to death by his ministers.
 Cakṣuṣa: Bhāgavata.
 Vīra: Mārkaṇḍeya.
 Rambha precedes Viviṃśati: Bhāgav.
 Balāśva or Balakāśva or Subalāśva, according to the Mārkaṇḍeya, which explains his name Karandhama to denote his creation of an army, when besieged by his revolted tributaries, by breathing on his hands.
 Both forms occur, as the commentator observes. The Mārkaṇḍeya has a long story of this prince’s carrying off the daughter of Viśāla, king of Vaidiśa. Being attacked and captured by his confederated rivals, he was rescued by his father, but was so much mortified by his disgrace, that he vowed never to marry nor reign. The princess, also becoming an ascetic, met with him in the woods, and they were finally espoused; but Avikṣit kept his other vow, and relinquished his succession in favour of his son, who succeeded to the kingdoms of both Karandhama and Viśāla…
 Most of our authorities quote the same words, with or without addition. The Vāyu adds, that the sacrifice was conducted by Samvartta, whom the Bhāgavata terms a Yogi, the son of Aṅgiras; and that Vrihaspati was so jealous of the splendour of the rite, that a great quarrel ensued between him and Samvartta. How it involved the king is not told, but apparently in consequence, Marutta, with his kindred and friends, was taken by Samvartta to heaven. According to the Mārkaṇḍeya, Marutta was so named from the paternal benediction, ‘May the winds be thine,’ or ‘be propitious to thee.’ He reigned, agreeably to that record, 85000 years.
 Omitted in the Bhāgavata.
 A rather chivalric and curious story is told of Dama in the Mārkaṇḍeya. His bride Sumanā, daughter of the king Daśārha, was rescued by him from his rivals. One of them, Bapushmat, afterwards killed Marutta, who had retired into the woods, after relinquishing his crown to his son. Dama in retaliation killed Bapushmat, and made the Piṇḍa, or obsequial offering to his father, of his flesh: with the remainder he fed the Brahmans of Rākṣasa origin: such were the kings of the solar race.
 The Bhāgavata has Bandhavat, Oghavat, and Bandha.
 The Vāyu and Bhāgavata both add that she was the wife of Viśravas, and mother of Kuvera. In the Liṅga P. she is said to have been the wife of Pulastya, and mother of Viśravas. The weight of authority is in favour of the former statement. See p. 83. n. 5.
 The Bhāgavata names three sons, Viśāla, Śūnyabandhu, and Dhūmaketu. Vaiśālī is a city of considerable renown in Indian tradition, but its site is a subject of some uncertainty. Part of the difficulty arises from confounding it with Viśālā, another name of Ujayin; ### Hemacandra. Also in the Megha Dūta; ‘Having arrived at Avanti, proceed to the illustrious city before indicated, p. 354 Viśālā.’ ‘To the city Ujjayinī, named Viśālā. Comment. Vaiśālī however appears to be very differently situated. According to the Buddhists, amongst whom it is celebrated as a chief seat of the labours of Śākhya and his first disciples, it is the same as Prayāga or Allahabad; but the Rāmāyaṇa (I. 45) places it much lower down, on the north bank of the Ganges, nearly opposite to the mouth of the Sone; and it was therefore in the modern district of Sāran, as Hamilton (Genealogies of the Hindus) conjectured. In the fourth century it was known to the Chinese traveller Fa-hian as Phi-she-li, on the right bank of the Gandak, not far from its confluence with the Ganges. Account of the Foe-küe-ki: Trans. R. As. Soc. no. IX. p. 128.
 Dhumrākṣa and Samyama: Bhāgavata.
 The text is clear enough; but, as elsewhere noticed (Hindu Theatre, II. 296), the commentator on the Bhāgavata interprets the parallel passage, very differently, or ‘Kriśāśva with Devaja,’ or, as some copies read, Devaka or Daivata, as if there were two sons of Samyama.
 The Bhāgavata changes the order of these two, making Janamejaya the son of Sumati; or Pramati, Vāyu. Sumati, king of Vaiśālī, is made cotemporary with Rāma: Rāmāyaṇa, I.47. 17. The dynasty of Vaiśāla kings is found only in our text, the Vāyu, and Bhāgavata. Hamilton places them from 1920 to 1240 B. C.; but the latter is incompatible with the date he assigns to Rāma, of 1700 B. C. The co-temporary existence of Sumati and Rāma, however, is rather unintelligible, as, according to our lists, the former is the thirty-fourth, and the latter the sixtieth, from Vaivaswata Manu.
 The circumstances of their marriage, of Chyavana’s appropriating a share of offerings to the Asvinī Kumāras, and of sis quarrel with Indra in consequence, are old in detail in the Bhāgavata and Padma Purāṇas.
 In most of the other Purāṇas, Reva or Raiva. The Liṅga and Matsya insert Rocamāna before him; and the Bhāgavata adds to Ānartta, Uttānavarhiṣ and Bhūṛṣeṇa.
 The Bhāgavata ascribes the foundation of Kuśasthalī to Revata, who built it, it is said, within the sea. The subsequent legend shews that it was the same, or on the same spot, as Dvārakā; and Ānartta was therefore part of Cutch or Guzerat. See p. 190. n. 77.
 So called from its many Dvāras or gateways: ### Vāyu.
 The object of this legend, which is told by most of the authorities, is obviously to account for the anachronism of making Balarāma cotemporary with Raivata; the one early in the Treta age, and the other at the close of the Dvāpara.