Comprehensive History & Culture of Andhra Pradesh Series, Vol IV
Edited by Somasundara Rao
This third volume in the Comprehensive History and Culture of Andhra Pradesh series spans the Early Medieval period, from ad 624 to 1000. This period was one of distributive economics and regional cultures, and marked a transition in the political, economic, social and cultural spheres. Identity and status were provided to Telugu, the language of the land, and also to various communities in the varna structure. The role of landed intermediaries and of religious sects –Pasupata, Kalamukha, Kapalika, Siddha, Jaina – was significant.
The year ad 624 saw the establishment of the Vatapi/Badami Chalukyas over Andhra Desa and an independent collateral power in Vengi that rose to prominence in the geopolitics of southern India. The patrimonial states of the Banas, Renadu Cholas and Nolambas, and Gangas of Kalinga held their respective regions, acknowledging Chalukyan overlordship. With the fall of the Chalukyas of Badami, the Chalukyan lineages of Vemulawada and Mudigonda in Telangana and Elamanchili in Vengi Desa became prominent.
In matters of religion, Sriparvata (Srisailam) was a renowned holy centre. By the tenth century the concept of Pancharama Kshetras emerged– the nucleus being Draksharama. Srikalahasti was a prominent Saiva shrine, and Tirumala and Ahobilam were well known among the Vaishnava holy centres. Temple-building activity witnessed an intrusive north Indian style which later eclipsed, giving way to the indigenous upper Dravida Desa style. Alampur evolved into a prominent school of art and architectural styles in the Andhra–Karnataka region, while Hemavathi nurtured by the Nolambas influenced southern Karnataka and Andhra Desa, and Mukhalingam flourished as the dominant school of Kalinga.
The economy was primarily agrarian in nature, and in the Telangana region agriculture was expanded through tank irrigation. Thus a process of economic integration began and the temple as the centre of the economy grew to its heights in the period after ad 1000.
General Editor:V. Ramakrishna, formerly Professor of History at the University of Hyderabad, studied at Andhra University and Jawaharlal Nehru University. He specialized in the socio-cultural history of modern India with special reference to Andhra Pradesh. He is the author of Social Reform in Andhra (1848–1919). A founder-member of the Andhra Pradesh History Congress, he served as its General Secretary. He was also Secretary of the Indian History Congress.
Working Editor: K.S. Kameswara Rao has an M.A. and Ph.D. in history from Andhra University. Actively associated with the Andhra Pradesh History Congress since its inception, he was also its General Secretary. He retired as Reader in History from Ideal College, Kakinada.
Coordinating Executive Editor:A. Satyanarayana, Professor of History, Osmania University, Hyderabad, specialized in modern Indian history with special reference to social movements, identity politics and diaspora studies. His latest publications include Dalits and Upper Castes: Essays in Social History and Economy and Society and Polity: Studies in Agrarian History. He has presided over the modern India section of the Indian History Congress.
Editor: B.Rajendra Prasad was formerly Professor, Department ofAncient Indian History, Culture and Archaeology, Sri Venkateswara University, Tirupati. He is the author of Temple Sculpture of Andhra Pradesh, Art of South India: Andhra Pradesh and Chalukyan Temples of Andhra Desa. He has published several articles on the socio-economic and cultural history of Andhra Pradesh. A founder member of the Andhra Pradesh History Congress, he served as its General Secretary and was on the Executive Committee of the Indian History Congress and Indian Art History Congress.