under review

Gajabahu Synchronism

From Tamil Wiki

இந்தப் பக்கத்தை தமிழில் வாசிக்க: கஜபாகு காலம்காட்டி முறைமை

Gajabahu Synchronism is the study methodology recommended by Tamil researcher V. Kanakasabai Pillai to mark the reigning period of the Sangam period Tamil kings. This was explained by Kanakasabai Pillai in his book "1800 aandugal mun Tamizhar (Tamils 1800 years ago). Historians from the later years used the same method to estimate the timing of Sangam period of Tamil Nadu.

Prediction of Time Period

According to this timeline system, the Srilankan Emperor Kayavagu who attended the Kannagi Festival hosted by Senguttuvan in Silapathikaram, and the King Gajabahu who reigned during the 2nd Century AD as mentioned in the Buddhist historical book 'Mahavamsam’, is considered to be the same. ('Mahavamsam’ clearly defines Gajabahu’s time as 113-134 AD). The timeline of the royalties mentioned in the Mahavamsam are accepted as reliable. According to this, the period of Silapadhigaram is deduced as 2nd century AD. This is the time of Cheran Senguttuvan. Moving back and forth from this point, V. Kanakasabai Pillai defined the history of Tamil Nadu.

The Silapathikaram verse which sings about the Kannagi Festival conducted by Cheran Senguttuvan in which Kayavagu participated. (Silapathikaram 151 - 163). Pathitrupathu attests to the same.(Pathitrupathu 46 - Sings the praises of Senguttuvan).

If the period of Cheran Sengkuttuvan coincides with the period of Gajabahu, then both Pathitrupathu and as Silapathikaram belong to the 2nd century, they belong to the post Sangam transition period (Sangam Maruviya Kaalam). According to this estimate, V. Kanakasabai Pillai took the history of the Sangakala Tamil kings to before 250 AD. It is said that Senguttuvan met a king named Nutruvam Kannan in Silapathikaram. V. Kanakasabai Pillai guesses that it is a word meaning Satakarni. This incurs that Senkuttuvan met Satakarni, a Sadavakana king who may have lived in the 2nd century AD, thus further strengthening this method.

According to Mahavamsam, there were only two kings named Gajabahu. One reigned during the 2nd century while the other reigned during the 12th Century. During the 12th Century, stone inscriptions and charters of Cholas began to appear in large numbers. Hence, Senguttuvan is not likely to have ruled the Cheran dynasty during this period. Thus according to this method, the Sangam period is generally accepted to be dated before 250 AD by the Tamil scholars. S. Vaiyapuri Pillai says this is an optimal calculation method.

Acceptance and Rejection

This method has been hailed by Kamil Zvelebil, a linguist and a literary figure, as an anchor to help predict the history of Sanga Tamil. But Sri Lankan researcher Gananath Obeyesekere has claimed that this method is unacceptable. Researcher Herman Tieken, rejects this method stating that the data are just a testimony to one another with no proper evidence.

Quotes and References

  • V. Kanakasabhai (1997). The Tamils Eighteen Hundred Years Ago. Asian Educational Services. International Standard Book Number:81-206-0150-5.
  • Zvelebil, Kamil (1973). The smile of Murugan: On Tamil literature of south India. Brill Academic Publishers. Pg. 37-39. International Standard Book Number: 90-04-03591-5. "The opinion that the Gajabahu Synchronism is an expression of genuine historical tradition is accepted by most scholars today"
  • Pillai, Vaiyapuri (1956). History of Tamil Language and Literature; Beginning to 1000 AD. Madras, India: New Century Book House. Pg. 22. "We may be reasonably certain that chronological conclusion reached above is historically sound"
  • Gananath Obeyesekere in his The Cult of the Goddess Pattini (1984)

✅Finalised Page