Sri Krishnadevaraya

Kingdom of Vijayanagar:

Vijayanagar empire was one of the most glorious and prosperous empires in history. Therefore, history lovers like you must read about the Vijayanagar Empire once. The hero of the vast realm of this great Emperor, Sri Krishnadevaraya. Today’s new generation is going to forget about such a great ruler. Most people know great personalities only after Bollywood, Hollywood released films on them. Today I’m going to tell you about this great Emperor.

Fame of Emperor Sri Krishnadevaraya:

Emperor Krishnadevaraya ruled Vijaynagar from 1509 C.E. to 1592C.E.. He was the third ruler of the great Tuluva dynasty in South India. Many great Indian rulers like Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj were considered him as ideal. During his lifetime, he received titles like Kannada state Ram Raman (God of Kannad Empire), Andhra Bhoj (Banquet for Telugu Literature) and Muru Raira Ganda (King of Three Kings). In his career, he had defeated powerful states like Bijapur, Golconda, Bahamani Sultanate, Gajpati Sultan of Odisha. When Babar was beginning the Mughal rule in the North, during that time, Emperor Krishnadevaraya was the most powerful ruler in India. His kingdom Vijayanagara was the most outstretched Empire in India.

Foreign Traveller who Visited Vijaynagar:

Many foreign tourists, such as Domingo Paes and Fernao Nuniz, visited Vijaynagar. Timirusu was the Prime Minister in the court of Krishnadevaraya. Timirusu helped Krishnadevaraya to see the kingdom.

The history of Emperor Krishnadevaraya behind becoming King of Vijaynagar: Tuluva Narsa Nayak was the father of Krishnadevaraya. Tuluva Narsa Nayak was also the army commander of Suluva Narasinghadevaraya. A competent king was needed to prevent the disintegration of the kingdom, even to unite and strengthen the country. Therefore, Krishnadevaraya takes Vijayanagara into his right. Krishnadevaraya coronation happened on the festival of Krishnajanmastami (Birthday (Appearance) of Lord Krishna) with the help Timmurusu. Samrat Krishnadevarai gives Timmurusu the status of his father, and due to his worthiness, he declares Timmurusu as the Prime Minister of the state.

Sri Krishnadevaraya Statue Image
Image Credits: Srikar Kashyap

Image Credits: Srikar Kashyap

Emperor Krishnadevaraya’s personality

Emperor Krishnadevaraya had great respect for the foreign pilgrims coming to the state. It is also strict in terms of legislation. He was irritated with the rebellions, treasons and thefts in the country. According to the travel details of pilgrims visiting Vijaynagar, Krishnadevaraya was an excellent judicial patron, as well as a great warrior. In every battle, he was the leader of the army, in many battles, he found in travelogue describing his leadership despite being injured.

Emperor Sri Krishnadevaraya’s military success:

Krishnadevaraya achieved the highest military achievement in the history of Vijayanagara. He was known to change the war strategy at the last minute. This strategy does not give enough time to the enemy to take action to understand the new plan. Because of such war strategy, he did not lose any war in his career.

Valiantness of Sri Krishnadevaraya in Deccan:

Sultan of Deccan sent his army to loot the people of Vijayanagara. Therefore, the villages of Vijaynagar were in trouble. The robberies were stopped entirely, during the reign of Emperor Krishnadevaraya.
The Emperor Shri Krishnadevaraya defeated Sultan Mahmudshah by invading Vijapur in 1509 AD. Therefore, Bidar, Gulbarga and Vijapur are once part of Vijaynagar, once again reunited to Vijayanagara. Krishnadevaraya As a founder of Bijapur in which Emperor Sri Krishnadevaraya was given the title of “founder of the Yavan kingdom” after giving the throne of Bijapur to Mahmudshah. Prime Minister Timirasu defeated Sultan Kuli Qutub Shah of Govalkonda.

Fight of Sri Krishnadevaraya against the rebel rulers:

Sri Krishnadevaraya had defeated many rebel local rulers, such as Dharanikota Kamas, Ummatur’s head. Krishnadevaraya had passed the Godavari river in the year 1516-1517.

Siege of Udayagiri and victory:

During Krishnadevaraya’s time, Kalinga ruled by Odisha and Andhra Pradesh’s Gajapati Prataprudra. In Ummatur’s campaign, he had a lot of help in attacking the Andhra region. Krishnadevaraya surrounded the fort of Udayagiri in the Nellore district of Andhra Pradesh for 18 months. Gazapati Pratapraudra’s army has to retreat due to hunger, after cutting the food supply to the fort. After the success of Udaygiri, emperor Krishnadevaraya worshipped with his wives in the temple of Tirupati.

Battle at Kondavidu:

There was a bloody battle at the Kondavidu between King of Kaling Pratapradrude and Krishnadevaraya. After seizing Kondavidu fort, Vijaynagar army has to retreat for some time due to accidents and significant losses.
After, minister Timmarsu finds the secret path to the east gate of the Kondavidu fort. The army of Vijayanagara suddenly invades the Kondavidu fort during a night attack with that secret entrance. The son of Gajapati Prataprudra, Yuvraj Virabhadra was imprisoned from the fort.

Kondaveedu Fort Image:

Kondaveedu Fort Image
Image Credits: Abdaal

Victory of Sri Krishnadevaraya over Kalinga:

Some loafer(Wanderer) people from Andhra Pradesh who previously serviced to Prataparudra, betrayed the Gajapati Pratap Rudra. By providing them wealth, Timiruusu gets all the details of the Pratap Rudra’s plan. When the army of Vijayanagara invades Kalinga, Pratap Rudra ran away to the Cuttak. At that time, Cuttack was the capital of the kingdom of Gajapati Pratap Rudra. After that, soon Gajapati Pratap Rudra surrendered, and give his daughter, Jagan Mohini to the emperor Krishnadevaraya. Sri Krishnadevaraya accepted the deal of Gajapati Pratap Rudra, hence Krishna River becomes the border of Gajapati and Vijayanagara.

Battle of Raichur:

Raichur Fort won by King Sri krishnadevaraya
Image Credits: Madhu B M

Raichur’s battle is considered to be important. In this battle on 15th May 1520, about 16,000 soldiers of Vijaynagar were killed. Later, Vijaynagar soldiers, led by Pamasan Ramalinga Naidu, conquered Raichur fort. Thereafter, the emperor appreciated Pamaszan Ramalinga Naidu very much. There was terrible bloodshed in this war. Along with Vijayanagar, there were about 800,000 infantry, 35,000 cavalries, and 600 elephants in this battle.
After this war, Vijaynagar’s army siege to the previous capital of Bahamani Sultanate that fort of Gulbarga and conquered it.
After this campaign, the Emperor Shri Krishnadevaraya was ruled over the whole of South India.

Foreign relations of Emperor Sri Krishnadevaraya:

Emperor Krishnadevaraya established a very good relationship with the Portuguese. In 1510, the emperors established the Portuguese Dominion of India in Goa. So, foreign trade gets encouraged. Emperor Krishnadevaraya included Portuguese guns in his defense system, and also Portuguese horses in his horse barn. Krishnadevaraya adopted Portuguese’s improved water supply system in the Vijayanagara with the help of Portuguese experts.

Death of Crown Prince- Tirumala Rai:

In 1524, Emperor Krishnadevaraya declared his son Tirumala Rai as the Crown Prince of Vijaynagar. However, Tirumala Rai was poisoned and died due to the same reason.

Krishnadevaraya suspected that the most trustworthy advisor and father figure Timiruusu and his son may include in this conspiracy. Therefore, he gave a penalty of blinding them.

Death of Sri Krishnadevaraya:

After that, while preparing for the attack on the fort of Belgaum, Krishnadevaraya became seriously ill. He declared his brother Achyut Dev Rai as his successor. Later, soon after 1529, he died.

Golden Age of Literature:

It is said that the period of emperor Sri Krishnadevaraya was called the golden age of literature. Because, during his time, there was a large creation of literature in different languages. Emperors had given shelter to poets of different languages like Tamil, Kannada, Sanskrit, Telugu, etc.

Controversy of Sri Krishnadevaraya’s Dynasty:

Some historians believe that the Krishnadevaraya belongs to Tuluva dynasty, some believe Telugu, others believe that he belonged to Kannadiga. What was the dynasty of Krishnadevaraya? is a controversial question. However, most historians are agreed that he belonged to the Tuluva dynasty.

Eight Legends Appointed by Sri Krishnadevaraya in the Vijayanagara Empire:

The eight poets who were the backbone of Telugu literature in the court of Sri Krishnadevaraya were called “Ashtadiggaz”(Eng: Eight Legends). Apart from the Vijayanagar court, these eight legends were responsible for running Vijayanagar uninterruptedly. Due to those great legends, the historical Telugu literature of Vijayanagar reached the summit. The period from 1540 to 1600 is called “Prabandha Kaal.” In the court of Emperor Krishnadevaraya, in the “Poet Literature Assembly,” those legends considered as eight pillars. Seems that, The eighth legend believed to have appointed in the seventeenth century.

Ashtadiggaj Names:

  • Allasani Peddana:

Identity:

Allasani Peddana name comes first in the Ashtadigagas. As he recognized as the most important gem of Vijaynagar durbar.

Place of Living- Village:

Somanandapalli, Anantapur was then transferred to Pandanpasu, Yeraguntla, Kadapa district.

Important events of his life:
  1. It’s believed that Peddana was the senior and highest of all poets. According to references, Krishnadevaraya himself lifted his palanquin in his honor.
  2. Sri Krishnadevaraya conferred the title of “Kanakabhishekam” to Peddana.
  3. He was the only poet to receive the honor of sitting on the royal elephant of the dynasty.
  4. On the death of Sri Krishnadevaraya, Peddana expressed his grief with this poem “Ati Krishna Rayala Thotti Dvikengaleka Braithiki Undithi Jeevatchawambu Nagachu”.
  5. It’s believed that he was born in the house of Singanna and Thimmamamba.
  • Nandi Thimmana:

Identity:

Nandi Thimmana was the famous writer and poet of Vijayanagar cour. His poems was famous among telugu literature.

Place of Living- Village:

He was also considered the residents of Anantapur.

Important events of his life:
  1. It’s said that Nandi Thimmana was the head of a sub-kingdom in the Vijayanagara Empire. His daughter was Princess named Tirumala Devi.
  2. He had dedicated his work to Maharaja Sri Krishnadevaraya. This work of his literature completed under the name “Parijatpaharnamu.”
  3. He was a disciple of Acharya Aghora Shiva. Although he was from the Shaiva sect, some of his work also based on the Vaishnava sect. In those days the Vaishnava sect had a royal asylum in Vijayanagara.
  4. At that time his poems were published in Telugu on the beautiful nose, which became very popular. In Telugu, the nose is called mukku. As a result, he was also known as “Mukku Thimmana”.
  5. Nandi Thimmana completed the incomplete Mahabharata of the poet Kumaraswamy. Kumaraswamy was the famous poet in Kannada literature. Nandi Thimmana presented that work in the durbar which called “Karnataka Krishnadevaraya Bharatha Kathamanjari.”
  • Tenali Ramakrishna:

Identity:

Tenali Ramakrishna was also known as Vikatkavi (Hindi: Vidushak, English: clown). He was a famous Telugu poet. He was also quick-witted of Vijaynagar durbar.

Place of Living- Village:

Tenali Ramakrishna was from Tenali village in Vijaynagar Empire.

Important events of his life:

A man of brilliant intelligence, he gained a prominent position in the court due to his humorous nature and quick-wittedness. During the reign of Emperor Sri Krishnadevaraya, he played an essential role in the court.

  • Madyagari Mallana:

  • Dhurjati:

  • Aylaraju Rambhadrudu:

  • Pingi Surana:

  • Ramarajbhushanu:

Image Credits: Chavakiran

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