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Abhira Dynasty

c.208 AD - c.280 AD : Abhiras / Abheeras (c. 208 - c. 375 AD) were subordinate rulers of Western Satraps and declared independence after fall of Satavahanas
Founder : Isvarasena
Language : Sanskrit
Religion : Hinduism (Saivism)
The Abhiras were in power for 67 years according to most puranas and one hundred and 67 years according to Vayu purana. 

Around 280 A.D Abhiras lost sovereign status due to the rise of Chutus in Western Deccan and Ikshavakus in Eastern Deccan.

The Abhiras were from the Yaduvanshi Kshatriya clan. Some of them entered the military service of the Western Satraps (Sakas), and helped them in conquest of new territories. By 181 A.D, the Abhiras had gained considerable influence at the Kshatrapa court. Some of them were even serving as generals. 

84 A.D : Daulatpur Yashti Inscription of Regaresvaradeva during the reign of Chastana 6th year

General Bapaka

181 A.D : General Rudrabhuti
The Gunda Stone inscription dated Saka year 103 (181 CE) refers to Abhira Rudrabhuti as the senapati (commander-in-chief) of the Saka satrap (ruler) Rudrasimha (178 - 197 AD).
The history of the Abhiras is shrouded in much obscurity. The Abhira dynasty was founded by Ishwarsena. The branch came to power after the demise of the Satavahanas in the Nasik region of Maharashtra, with the help and consent of the Western Satraps (Sakas). They were known as Gavali rajas indicating that they were cowherds by profession before becoming kings. Ten Abhira kings ruled in the Maharashtra region of the Deccan, whose names have not been mentioned in the Puranas. An Abhira king is known to have sent an embassy to the Sassanid Shahanshah of Persia, Narseh, to congratualte him on his victory against Bahram III.

 Gupta Empire, a period that oriental historians have named the "Golden Age of India." recorded Abhira as a "frontier kingdom" which paid an annual tribute. This was recorded by Samudragupta's Allahabad Pillar inscription

The following is the list of the sovereign and strong Abhira rulers

188 A.D : Abhira Sivadatta
A general in the service of Rudrasimha I who deposed his master in 188 A.D and ascended the throne. Rudrasimha I soon deposed him and regained the throne in 190 A.D.

c. 208 -  228 A.D - Mathariputra Svami Sakasena alias Saka Satakarni
Another king claiming to be a son of Mathari besides Abhira Ishwarsena is Sakasena. He was likely the older brother of Ishwarsena, who succeeded him on his death. He is identified with Saka Satakarni, whose coins have been found over Andhra Pradesh
Kanheri Cave Inscription in Year 8
He seems to be ruling Maharashtra and also some copper coins found in Peddabankur, Peddapalli district, Telangana.

Abhira Kottaraja
Vatsyayana (between c.200 - c. 300 A.D) mentions Abhiras and Andhras ruling side by side. He Speaks of Abhira Kottaraja, king of kotta in Gujarat, who was killed by Washerman employed by his brother. Then again in the chapter on conduct of Woman confined to Harems, he describes the sexual abuses practiced in the seraglio of the Abhira kings among others. Kottaraja was probably his personal name. 

228 A.D - c.248 A.D - Abhira Ishwarsena alias Mahaksatrapa Isvaradatta 
Coin found of his 4th regnal year and 154 assumed to be Saka 154. (232 AD)

236 - 239 AD : Defeated Western Kshatrapas. According to the coins he was ruling between 236 A.D and 239 A.D when he usurped the throne of Western Kshatrapas

Ishwarsena was the first independent Abhira king. He was the son of Abhira Sivadatta and his wife Mathari. 

237 AD : Isvarasena an Abhira Chief, known from an inscription in Cave X at Nasik regnal year 9. was the founder of this kingdom. Sivadatta, the father of Rajan Isvarasena, bears no title in the epigraph, which indicates that he was not a king. The record is dated on the thirteenth day of the fourth fortnight of the season Grīshma in the ninth (regnal) year of the Ābhīra king Īśvarasēna. 

Ishwarsena started an era which later became known as the Kalachuri-Chedi era. His descendants ruled for nine generations.Ishwarsena's coins are dated only in the first and second years of his reign and are found in Saurashtra and Southern Rajputana.

In the Nashik Inscription Abhira king names Madhariputra Isvarasena, Madhariputra Isvarasena is described as the son of sivadatta. It records the gift of sakani visnudatta, daughter of saka Agnivarman, wife of the Ganapaka Rebhila and mother Ganapaka visvavarman, of three investments of 2000,1000 and 500 Karspanas in the trade guilds of Govardhana for the purpose of providing medicines for the sick buddhist monks living at the monestery on mount Trirasmi.

c.248 A.D - c. 280 A.D : Abhira Vashishthiputra Vasusena 
After the death of Abhira Vashishthiputra Vasusena, the Abhiras probably lost their sovereign and paramount status. The Abhiras lost most of their domains to the rising Vakatakas (north) and the Kadambas (south-west).The Abhiras were finally supplanted by their feudatories, the Traikutakas. But still many petty Abhira chieftains and kings continued to rule until the fourth century, roughly till 375 AD, in the Vidarbha and Khandesh region. They continued to rule, but without sovereignty, until they came into conflict with the Kadamba king Mayurasarman and were defeated.

278 AD: Astbhujasvamin Nagajunakonda Inscription
Year 30 (variously read as 9, 20, 30 of King King Vasisthiputra Vasusena the Abhira fortnight 6 of the rainy season 2 day 1 which is 257, 268 or 278 

By the great village chief, the great talavara, the great commander, Sivaseba of the Peribidehas of the Kuasika gotra this image of lord Astbhujasvamin, made from udeumbara wood, which had never been moved from Sanjayapuri from its place, by the kings Saka Rudradaman of Avanti and Visnurudra Sivalanda Sataakrni of Vanavasa has been installed on Sedagiri. 

The engraver is Vardhamanaka belonging to sembaka family 

280 AD : Yasobhuti
A potin coin of a chief Yasobhuti was been reported from Hyderabad.

Around 280 AD Haritiputra Vinhukada Chutukulananda Satakarni might have defeated and occupied telangana region

Abheeras ruled the Telangana region contemporary to Ikshvakus. 

293 A.D : Paikali inscription of persia mentions Abhiran Sah (Abhira king) who deputed embassy to congratulate the Sasanian Naresh on his victory over Varhran III. Narseh was the seventh Sasanian King of Kings of Iran from 293 to 303

A stone inscription at Āmbē in the Hyderabad State records that Khōlēśvara, a general of the Yādava king Simhana, exterminated Lakshmīdēva, the lord of Bhambhāgiri, who belonged to the Ābhīra dynasty.3 Bhambhāgiri is probably identical with Bhāmēr, four miles south of Nizampur in the Pimpalner tālukā of the West Khandesh District. Near Bhāmēr is a great fortified hill which has many ruined gateways, gates, towers and also some old caves locally known as a Raja’s houses. The fort was probably known as Bhambhāgiri. The aforementioned Āmbē inscription describes Khōlēśvara as a very wild fire which burned the forest of the family of Lakshmīdēva, the Ābhīra king of Bhambhāgiri, and a similar statement occurs about Simhana in the Uddari stone inscription. This plainly indicates that the whole family of Lakshmīdēva was exterminated, and his kingdom was annexed by the Yādava king Simhana.

Another king named Kāmapāla, who was vanquished by the Krishna, the grandson and Successor of Simhana, probably belonged to the Ābhīra dynasty; for, his defeat is said to have delighted the cowherds, who may have been oppressed by him. The Tāsgaon plates of Krishna's reign intimate that Krishna's feudatory Kesava obtained a victory over a chief of the cowherds, who may have been identical with the aforementioned Kāmapāla. He also may have been ruling in some part of Khandesh.


352 AD : Vasuraka
Mewasa inscription, Gujarath 103 year (249 + 103) 

Kadamba King Mayurasarma (340-360AD) refers to a fight with Abhiras and Trikutakas 
The Abhiras were later supplanted by their feudatories, the Traikutakas around 375 AD

375 AD : Excavations at Devni-Mori near the village samlaji in Sabarkamth district of Gujarat a inscription of 127 year of kathika kings on the fifth day of the month of Bhardrapada during the reign of Rudrasena.

The Kalachuri Era, also called the Chedi Era, was a Hindu system of year numbering started by the Abhira King Ishwarsena in which the year numbering started in September 248 the year that began with the month of Asvina


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