Eran inscription

Eran inscription is crucial in reconstructing the history of the Gupta Empire. The capital of Erakina (Airikina) Pradesha or Airkina Vishaya, a Gupta administrative division, was Eran or Erakina.

Eran is a historic town and archaeological site in Madhya Pradesh. As demonstrated by the various coins discovered here, it was one of the oldest mints for Indian empires. The site contains temples and monuments from the Gupta dynasty, including a giant stone hog with sages and intellectuals depicted on the sculpture’s body. 

Eran Inscription
Eran Inscription

Eran Inscription of Sridharavarman (circa 350 CE)

Sridharavarman, a Saka (Indo-Scythian) king who ruled in Central India from 339 to 368 CE, carved an inscription on a tiny pillar at Eran alongside his Naga military commander. Around 510 CE, Bhanugupta carved his inscription on the same pillar.

Sridharavarman’s inscription appears to be followed chronologically by a monument and inscription by the Gupta Empire Samudragupta (r.336-380 CE), erected “for the goal of enhancing his glory,” and who may have thus displaced Sridharavarman in his excursions to the West.

Eran Inscription of Samudragupta’

The Eran Inscription of Samudragupta (336-380 CE) is now housed at the Indian Museum in Kolkata. The red sandstone inscription was discovered not far west of the ruined temple of the boar. Despite the fact that it is damaged and much of the inscription is missing, Cunningham considers it a remarkable find because it has numeral characters, with at least “2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7” intact.

Eran Inscription of Budhagupta (484–485 CE)

The date of the Budhagupta inscription is 484–485 CE. The inscription is Vaishnava. It states that the Gupta dynasty stretched from the Kalindi River to the Narmada River and that the inscription commemorates the raising of a column in honor of Janardana, Vishnu’s other name.

Eran Inscription of Toramana (circa 500 CE)

The Eran boar inscription of Toramana is an 8-line Sanskrit inscription written in a North Indian script, the first three of which are in metre and the rest in prose. It is a zoomorphic iconography of the Vishnu avatar carved on the chest of a freestanding 11-foot (3.4 m) high red sandstone hog statue dated to the 6th century. The inscription mentions King Toramana of the Alchon Huns as ruling over Malwa (“governing the earth”) and a Dhanyavishnu erecting a stone shrine to Narayana (Vishnu).

Eran Inscription of Bhanugupta (510 CE)

The fourth inscription is severely damaged, yet it is nonetheless significant. On the reverse of the Sridharavarman pillar is an inscription that references Bhanugupta. Without addressing the calendar system, it also records the death of the chieftain or noble Goparaja in a fight in the 191st year. Gupta era 191, or 510 CE, is largely accepted. It also discusses Goparaja’s cremation, as well as his wife’s cremation on the funeral pyre. According to Shelat, this is one of the oldest documented cases of Sati. Cunningham made no comment on the Bhanugupta-Goparaja inscription, but he did make a comment on three Sati stones he discovered, claiming that the earliest Sati stone monument he discovered dates from Samvat 1361. (1304 CE).

Additional sati stones have been discovered at the Eran site. In his archaeological survey report for 1874–1875, Alexander Cunningham noted three inscribed Sati stones in and around the Eran site, as well as communities across the river. He dated the first stone to the reign of Sultan Mahmud Khilchi of Mandugar-durg and Chanderi, the second to 1664 CE during the reign of Patisahi Sahi Jahan, who Cunningham speculated was likely a jagir and noble in Shah Jahan’s court, and the third to 1774 CE during the reign of Pandit Balwant Rau Govind and Balaji Tuka Deva, based on inscriptions on it.

Important Ancient Inscriptions & Edicts

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