Madhura Vijayam

  (Redirected from Madura Vijayam)

Madhurā Vijayam (Sanskrit: मधुरा विजयं), meaning "The Victory of Madurai", is a 14th-century C.E Sanskrit poem written by the poet Gangadevi. It is also named Vira Kamparaya Charitham by the poet. It chronicles the life of Kumara Kampana, a prince of the Vijayanagara Empire and the second son of Bukka Raya I. The poem describes in detail, the invasion and conquest of the Madurai Sultanate by the Vijayanagara empire.[1][2][3]

Madhura Vijayam 1924 Edition

The poem along with Ibn Battuta's memoirs and epigraphical and numismatic records, has been used as a historical source for determining the history of the Madurai Sultanate and the Vijayanagar empire's conquest of the Sultanate.[4][5]


Madhura Vijayam (lit. The conquest of Madhura (Madurai) or Vira Kamparaya Charitham (lit. The history of the brave king Kampa) is a mahākāvya (epic poem) in nine cantos (chapters), though possibly there was an extra canto (now lost) between the eighth and final canto. The available text contains 500-odd verses.[6]

M. Krishnamachariar in his History of Classical Sanskrit Literature describes the narrative as consisting of "melodious verses" and summarizes it thus:[7]

the exploits of her husband and narrates the history of his expedition to the south. The city of Vijayanagar with its temple and suburbs are described with all magnificence. Then comes the moving army and its relays on its way to Kāncī, where it is quartered for the winter. Inspired by the exhortation of a Goddess in his dream to extirpate the Mussalmans and to restore the country to its ancient glory, he advances to the South, kills the Sultan of Madura and commemmorates his victory by munificent grants to the temples of the country.

In the early chapters, Gangadevi, the wife of Kumara Kampanna II, describes the historical background of the Vijayanagar empire, the benevolent rule of Bukka I, the birth and early life of Kumara Kampanna. The middle chapters detail the adulthood actions of Kampanna, his south bound invasion and conquest of Kanchipuram. After conquering Kanchipuram and subduing Sambuvaraya chieftain, Kampanna enjoys a brief interlude while consolidating his southern conquests. He is visited by a strange woman (described as the Goddess Meenakshi in disguise) who pleads with him to liberate South India from the rule of the Madurai Sultanate.

Heeding her exhortation, Kampanna resumes his invasion of the South. The final chapters chronicle his invasion of Madurai, where he destroys the Muslim armies, slays the last sultan in single combat and restores the temple of Srirangam to its old glory.[2][8]

In relation to other worksEdit

The fact that the Madhura Vijayam refers to the Kṛṣṇa-karṇāmṛta of Līlāśuka,[9] praising him (in verse 1.12) immediately after Daṇḍin and Bhavabhūti,[10] has been used to fix a bound on the date of its author.[11] S. K. De, in History of Sanskrit Literature co-written with S. N. Dasgupta, mentions this poem in the section on poems with historical themes alongside the later Raghunāthābhyudaya of Rāmabhadrāmbā (which is on Raghunatha Nayaka).[12] Again, in the section on the anthologies and women poets, along with the later Tirumalāmbā who wrote the Varadāmbikā-Pariṇaya, he calls Gaṅgādevī a "more gifted" poetess, and the poem as "written in a simple style, comparatively free from the pedantry of grammar and rhetoric".[13] Similarly, Dasgupta, in the section on historical kāvyas, mentions it alongside the Hammīra-kāvya.[14]

Discovery and publicationEdit

Madhura Vijayam was discovered in 1916[6] in a private traditional library at Thiruvananthapuram by Pandit N Ramasvami Sastriar. It was found in the form of a single manuscript of sixty-one palm leaves, bound between two other unrelated works. The available poem is made up of nine cantos (chapters) containing 500-odd verses,[6] with some verses incomplete and others missing and presumed lost, including possibly an entire canto between the eighth and final canto.[8][15][6]

Though the printed editions have been based on this single manuscript discovered in Trivandrum, the New Catalogus Catalogorum lists three other manuscripts discovered later: two of them are also in Trivandrum, and the third, in Lahore, has even less text (contains only seven cantos).[6][16]


  • (1916) Madhurāvijayam: or Vīrakamparāya Charitam by Gaṅgādēvī. Edited by Pandit G. Harihara Śāstri and Pandit V. Śrīnivāsa Śāstri, Smṛitviśārada. Printed at the Śrīdhara Press, Trivandrum. (Complete Sanskrit text.)
  • (1924) Madhura Vijaya or Virakamparaya Charita: An Historical Kavya by Ganga Devi. Edited by G. Harihara Sastri and V Srinivasa Sastri Smritvisarada. (Second edition revised by the former.) Printed at The Sridhara Power Press, Trivandrum. (Complete Sanskrit text.)
  • (1957) Madhurāvijayam of Gangā Dēvi. Edited by S Thiruvenkatachari. Published by Annamalai University. (Sanskrit text with English translation.)
  • (1969) Madhurāvijayam. Edited, with a commentary Bhāvaprakāśikā, by Pōtukucci Subrahmaṇyaśāstrī. Published by Ajanta Arts Printers, Kollur, Tenali.
  • (2001) Madhurāvijaya Mahākāvyam. Edited with Hindi translation by Dr Sharada Mishra. Published by Shri Sharada Publication and Printing Mart, Patrakar Nagar, Patna. (Sanskrit text with Hindi translation)
  • (2010) Madhurāvijayam of Gaṅgādevī: A historical work of 14th Century in Sanskrit (cantos 8 and 9). Edited by K S Kannan. Published by Bangalore University, Bangalore. (Text, translation and detailed notes on eighth and final cantos.)
  • (2013) The Conquest of Madhurā: Gaṅgādevī’s Madhurā Vijaya. Translated by Shankar Rajaraman and Venetia Kotamraju. Published by Rasāla Books, Bangalore. ISBN 978-81-924112-2-4. (Ebook ISBN 978-81-924112-3-1.) About 200 of the 500-odd Sanskrit verses are selected, and printed along with translation into English.

Further readingEdit

  • (1976) Madhurāvijaya in Historical Mahākāvyas in Sanskrit (Eleventh to Fifteenth Century A.D.) by Chandra Prabha, pp. 320–344.
  • (1995) Madhurāvijayam mahākāvya kī ālocanātmaka mīmāṃsā by Padmāvatī Devī Tripaṭhī. Published by Pārijāta Prakāśana, Gorakhpur. 310 pages.
  • (2010) Gaṅgādevī's Madhurāvijayam. By A. Krishnamachariar, Shriranganachiar Publishers, Srirangam.
  • (2013) Sound Play and the Madhurā Vijaya of Gaṅgādevī. By Shankar Rajaraman and Venetia Kotamraju, Asian Literature and Translation, 1(4), pp. 1–17, doi:10.18573/j.2013.10202

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Ernst, Carl W. (1992). Eternal garden: mysticism, history, and politics at a South Asian Sufi center (Illustrated ed.). SUNY Press. p. 297. ISBN 978-0-7914-0884-1.
  2. ^ a b Jackson, William Joseph (2005). Vijayanagara voices: exploring South Indian history and Hindu literature (Illustrated ed.). Ashgate Publishing. pp. 61–70. ISBN 978-0-7546-3950-3.
  3. ^ Chattopadhyaya, Brajadulal (2006). Studying Early India: Archaeology, Texts and Historical Issues. Anthem Press. pp. 141–143. ISBN 978-1-84331-132-4.
  4. ^ Aiyangar, Sakkottai Krishnaswami (1921). South India and her Muhammadan Invaders. Madras, British India: Humphrey Milford, Oxford University Press. p. 184.
  5. ^ Sastri, Kallidaikurichi Aiyah Aiyar Nilakanta (1958) [1955]. A History of South India: From Prehistoric Times to the Fall of Vijayanagar (Paperback ed.). Madras: Oxford University Press, Amen House, London. p. 241.
  6. ^ a b c d e Shankar Rajaraman and Venetia Kotamraju, 2013, page iv
  7. ^ M. Krishnamachariar (1937), History of Classical Sanskrit Literature, Tirumalai-Tirupati Devasthanams Press, Madras, p. 215
  8. ^ a b "A portion from madhurAvijaya". 30 October 2008. Retrieved 3 February 2010.
  9. ^ Harihara Shastri and Srinivasa Shastri, Some Later poets mentioned in the Madhurāvijaya, Quarterly Journal of the Mythic Society, X, p. 381 f.
  10. ^ S. N. Dasgupta (1947), A History Of Sanskrit Literature Classical Period Vol 1, p. 663
  11. ^ K. Kunjunni Raja (1980), Contribution of Kerala to Sanskrit Literature, p. 43
  12. ^ Dasgupta, p. 361
  13. ^ Dasgupta, p. 418
  14. ^ Dasgupta, p. 679
  15. ^ Devi, Ganga (1924). Sastri, G Harihara; Sastri, V Srinivasa (eds.). Madhura Vijaya (or Virakamparaya Charita): An Historical Kavya. Trivandrum, British India: Sridhara Power Press. Retrieved 21 June 2016.
  16. ^ Entry मधुराविजय in New Catalogus Catalogorum Volume XVIII, page 141.

External linksEdit