A Brief Sketch of the history of the Lunar race Yadava Dynasty of Rajputs —–
In early times the Yamuna was the southern boundary for those Vedic Aryan settlers who might have set up frontier outposts on or near the site on Brajamndal.The earliest Aryan tribe , which came to be associated with this Braj area , seems to have been that of the yadus who are mentioned in the Rigveda as one of the ten tribes taking part in the Dasharajna or battle of ten kings against Kingh Sudasa of the Bharatas (1)., Who is said vanquished them (along with the purus and the Matsyas etc.) after which they , with the closely allied tribe of Turvasa , migrated to these parts (2)
For the dynastic history of the Yadus or Yadavas the chief sources of information are the Puranas , the Epics and Jain literature .
Lunar race or Chandravansh —
Budh was an ancestor of a branch of the great Hindu people of the time prior to anthentic history.He is traced up to Brahma , from whom , he descends through Atri , Samudra , Chandra or Soma , and Vrihaspati . Budha is said to have married Ila , daughter of Ikshvaku , with whom , therefore , he was a contemporary , and the descendants of this union were in succession , Pururava .Pururava married with Urvarshi .Ayu or Yaoe , Nahusa and Yayati .
Yayati was a famous emperor and conqueror (3).
FromYayati sprang three great lines , the Yadu, Puru and Ura or urvasa , from each of which came many dynasties ruling on the Indus , in Hindustan , Aasam ,Ava ,and China.The great Hay was a branch of Yadu ;and five members of it formed Panchelika or Panchaldesa and the second of Bajaswa at one time occupied all the countries on the Indus .Of the three lines , the Yadu ,Puru and Uru , Yadu became the most illustrious . Yayati’s eldest son was Yadu (4). The descendants of Budha and Ila were known as Chandravanshi , Somvanshi , or Induvanshi , all of these terms meaning the Lunar Race , but the fame of Yadu aelipsed the prior designations ,and throughout India the lunar race came to be styled Yaduvanshi (5).
Yadu , the eldest son of Yayati and his wife Devayani , daughter of Shukrachary , anomade pastoral race of ancient India and founder of the line of the Yadavas in which Krishna was born.He refused to bear the curse of decrepitude passed upon his father by the sage Sukra , and in consequence he incurred the parental curse ” your posterity shall not possess dominion .” Still he received from his father the southern districts of his kingdom ,and his posterity prospered.Yadu held territories in Hindustan about Allahabad .
The genealogy of descendants of Yadu—
1-Haihayas–The Haihayas branch of Yadavas comprised five families , the Vitihotras , Saryatas ,Bhojas , Avantis and Tundikeras , who were all Talajangas ;Vitihotra’s son was king Ananta , and his son was Durjaya Amitrakarsana .
2-Krostu Branch ––
The genealogy of the other branch descended from Yadu’s son Krostu and known as the Yadavas proper may be conveniently noticed in two parts , the first from Krostu to Satvata and the second the remainder.
A-Vidarbha craved out the kingdom.of Vidarbh.This line soon divided into three sub -lines , the senior of which apparently continued there for a time , while the second descended from Kaisika (who is often misread Kausika ) established Itself in Chedi , and third from.Lomapada reigned elsewhere .The genealogies then follow the senior line of Vidarbha from Kratha.
Lomapada’s sub -line is given thus –Lomapada , Babhru , Ahrti ,Sveta , Visvasaha , Kausika , Sumants , Anala , Sveni , Dyutimant , Vapusmant , Brhanmedhas , Srideva , and Vitaratha .Where they reigned is not stated.
B-The second part begins with Satvata’s sons , Bhajamana , Devaverdha , Andhaka and Vrsni and comprises the various families that developed from them.
The Yadavas —The Satvatas
1-Bhajin-Bhajamana —lineage not given .
2-Devavardha—Babhru—The Bhojas of Marttikavata.
A-Kukura (from whom were the Kukuras ) –Vrsni (Dhranu ) –Kapotaroman —Viloman (Tittiri ) –Nala ( Nandanodaradundubhi )—Abhijit –Punarvasu –Ahuka( i )-Ugrasena –Kansa and other sons (ii) Devaka-Devki and other daughters.
B–Bhajamana (from whom were the Andhakas )–Viduratha —Rajadhideva –Sura —Sonhsva –Samin –Pratiksatra –Svayambhoja —Hardika –a-Krtavarman , b-Devarha -Kambalabarhisa –Asamaujas , c-others sons.
1-Sumitra or Anamitra I– Nighna- (a)
Prasena , b-Satrajit –Bhangakara–Sabhakas
1-Yudhajit -Prsni -(i) -Savphalka –Akrura –Devavant and Upadeva .(ii)-Chitraka –Prthu and others.
2-Devamidhusa –Sura – (I)Vasudeva -a-Balrama b- Krishna (ii) others sons
3-Anamitra II–Sini (Whose desendants were the Sainayas )–Satyaka –Yuyudhana –Asanga –Yugandhara .
Yadava .Sanskrat .Jadon .Hindi—
Yadava is a Sanskrat word and it’s Hindi version is Jadon.
Yayati’s eldest son Yadu’s progeny came to be known as the Yadavas (7) , the first Lunar dynasty to rise into prominence (8) .Moreover , from almost the very beginning of their history of Yadavas (who were related by marriage to the Pandvas of Hastinapur ,) or a descendant of Yadu , a tribe of Kshatriya / Rajputs.The Yadavas were the celebrated race in which Krishna was born. The Yadavas of old were a pastoral race . At the time of his birth they led a pastoral life and they were found in the neighbourhood of Mathura , a town on the bank of Jamuna and about 120 miles south of the site of the ancient city of Hastinapur.They dwelt on both sides of the river Yamuna (Jamuna) , on the western bank in the village of Vrindavan , and in Gokul on the other side.
The Mahabharata gives two summaries of his exploits of which the following are abridgments :—- “Krishna was born in the Yadava Clan of Lunar race Kshatriya.While he was growing up as a high-souled boy in the Tribe of Cowherds , the force of his arms was rendered famous by him in the three worlds “.
They afterwards migrated to Dwaraka , on the western coast of the peninsula of Gujrat.but under Krishna they established a kingdom at Dwaraka in Gujrat .All Yadavas who were present in that city after the death of Krishna perished in it when it was submerged by the ocean .Some few were absent , and perpetuated the race , from which many princes and chiefs still claim their descent.The Vishnu purana , Shrimad Bhagwat , Mahabharata and other puranas says of this race , “who shall enumerate the whole of the mighty men of the Yadava race , who were tens of ten thousands and hundreds of hundred thousands in number? “
Yadavas are found to be associated with Shurasena-desha (or the country of the Shurasenas or Shaurasenas )which included the region covered by the present district of Agra ( 9).But when and how the region acquired this name is not definitely known.
The inhabitants of the region , the Shurasenas ( or Vrishnis ), receive praise in the Karna-parva of Mahabharata in which they are described as observing sacrificial rites (10).,but eleswhere the final overthrow of the Vrishnis is ascribed to their irreverent conduct towards the Brahmanas (11) and they are branded as Vratyas , that is , deviators from orthodoxy (12).The kingdom of the Shurasenas is included in the list (preserved in the Puranas) of the kingdoms which flourished after the end of the Mahabharata War (13) .Its capital was Mathura and it extended over at least the present districts of Agra and Mathura (14) , probably with a second capital at Shauripur in the former district .The Purana mention that after this war up to the time of the Nandas twenty-three Shurasena kings (probably beginning with Krishna’s great -grandson Vajra )ruled over this region but no dynastic lists are available (15)nor are any other historical details forthcoming till the times of Mahavira and Buddha , both of whom are said to have visited these parts .The Shurasena country figures as one of the Solasa Mahajanapadas (sixteen premier states ) of those times as mentioned in the early Jain and Buddhist texts and was generally paired with Matsya which lay to its west and south-west (roughly covering modern Bharatpur , Alwar and Jaipur )(16).On the north-west it was bounded by Kuru , on the north by North Panchala , on the north-east by South Panchala and on the south -east bt Chedi , and was ruled by the Shurasenas (or the Yadavas of the Shurasena country )(17).The Shurasenas seem to have been subjugated by the Nanda King (probably Mahapadma ) about the middle of the fourth century B .C (18) .Nevertheless , the Shauraseni continued to be a notable people down to the time of Magasthenes ( circa 300B.C) although at that time their territory must have formed an integral part of the Maurya empire (19).The Greek writer ,Arrian , speaks of the Sourasenoi , an Indian tribe who possessed two large cities , Methora and Cleisobora ,through whose country flowed a navigable river called the Iobares ( or Jobares ) (20) .There is no doubt that the people meant here are the Shurasenas , the river referred to is the the Yamuna and the first of the two cities is Mathura but there has been no unanimity regarding the identification of Cleisobora (21) ,one opinion being that it denoted Krishnapura and was somewhere in the Agra district and another identifying it with Bateshwar ( Shauripur ) (22).During the second century B.C., a powerful and independent dynasty came into existence in Mathura and held sway over parts of the Agra district (23) .The Indo-Greek and Indo-Parthian coins discovered from the ruins of Shauripur (24) bear testimony to its having been a flourishing city at that time.
Harsha ( 606-647 A.D ) as being the sovereign of the whole of northern India( 25).It appears that the king of Mathura continued to rule over the Agra region till their power was eclipsed by the sudden ascendancy of Yashovarman of Kannauj in the first half of the eighth century (26) and after that by the newly growing imperialistic power of the Gurjara Pratiharas .
The decline of the Gurjara Pratihara power in the second half of the 9th century was marked by the declaration of independence by a number of their feudatories and by the establishement of new Rajput principalities (27).Consquently a Yadava dynasty became strong in Bayana (in Bharatpur ) and it seems to have extended it’s sway over the south-western part of the Agra district , probably by ousting the Guhilas from there (28).Another Yadav family was ruling in Mahavan (near Mathura )and it might also have held some of the north-western portion of the Agra district (29).The remaining south eastern part of the district seems to have been held by the Kachchhapaghatas of Gwalior , who under Vajradman , rose to eminence about 977A.D( 30).
About 1018 A.D., Mahmud of Ghani defeated Kulachandra ,the Yadava ruler of Mahavan , who owned a large numbers of forts and a strong army (31) .
Now the real Yadava rajputs are the Bhattis of Jaisalmer , Jadejas of Kutchh and Bhuja ,Jhadavas of Devagiri , Hoysalas of Dwarsamudra , Ruler of Vijaynagar , Wadiyars of Mysore , Banaphers of Mahoba and Jadons of Karauli and United Provinces. All these sub -clans are real descendants of Yadukul Shiromani Vasudev Shri Krishna of Vrishni branch of Yadava dynasty of Lunar race (32-34 ).
1-The History and Culture of the Indian People , Vol.I., P.245.
2-Ibid ., P.247.
3-The History and Culture of the Indian People , Vol.I., P.274.
4-Ibid.The Vedic literature does not corroborate this puranic relationship of Yayati with Yadu although both find mention in the Vedic (Cf.Ibid ., P.306) .
5-The cyclopaedia of India and of Eastern and southern Asia.Vol 3.p.1102.
6-Pargiter F.E 1922.Ancient Indian Historical Tradition.
7-Mahabharata , Drona-Parva , ch.144, vv 6-7.
8-The History and Culture of the Indian People , Vol, I., P.274.
9-Cf .Pargiter , F.E.Markandeya purana, pp.351-352 ;Braja -ka-Itihas.op.cit.,pp.2,3,15.
10-Raychaudhuri , H.C.:Political History of Ancient India , (sixth ed) , p.151.
11-Ibid ., P.142 ;Mahabharata , Maushala-purva , ch.1, vv.15-22;ch.2.,v.10.
12-Ibid ., Drona-purva , ch.141, v.15; Raychaudhuri , op.cit .,p.142.
13-The History and Culture of the Indian people , Vol.I.p.319.
16-Ibid ., Vol ,II, pp.I, 11-12; Raychaudhuri , op.cit.,p.96.
18-Ibid .,pp.233-234.; A Comprehensive History of India , Vol.II, p.5;The History and Culture of the Indian people ., Vol.II., P.32.
19-Ibid ., P.61., Raychaudhuri , op.cit ., P.143.
20-Ibid .,p.138;A Comprehensive History of India , Vol.II.,p383.;Mc.Crindle , J.W., Ancient India as described by Megasthenes and Arriun , p.206.
21-Ibid .,p.142 ; Archaeological Survey of India Report , Vol.IV., Pp.222,230 .
22-Ibid ., Growse ,op.cit ., P.258 ; Braja -ka-Itihas , op.cut 72-73.
23-A Comprehensive History of India , Vol.II.,p.108 ; Narain ,A.K.:The Indo-Greeks, p.87.
24-Atkinson and Fisher , op.cit .,p.575.
25-The History and Culture of the Indian people .Vol.III.,p.11, 25.
27-The History and culture of the Indian people, Vol.IV.,p.110.
29-Braja-ka-Itihas , op.cit.pp.129-130.
30-The History and Culture of the Indian people , Vol.V., P.56.
32- Cornel James Tod ,Annals of Jaisalmer.
33-The Dynasties of the Kanarese districts of the Bombay Presidency by John Faithful Fleet ,1882.
34-Cunningham , Report of A tour in eastern Rajputana in 1882-83.pp.6-7.
Author-Dr Dhirendra Singh Jadaun
Village-Larhota near Sasni
Associate Prof in Agric.
Sahid Captain Ripudaman Singh Govt.College , Sawaimadhopur ,Raj.