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Vajji (Sanskrit: Vṛji) or Vrijji was a confederacy of neighbouring clans including the Licchavis and one of the principal mahājanapadas of Ancient India. The area they ruled constitutes the region of Mithila in northern Bihar and their capital was the city of Vaishali.[1]

Vajji

c. 700 BCE–c. 400 CE
Vajji and other Mahajanapadas in the Post Vedic period.
Vajji and other Mahajanapadas in the Post Vedic period.
CapitalVaishali[1]
Common languagesMaithili, Sanskrit
Religion
Hinduism
Buddhism
Jainism
GovernmentRepublic[1]
Raja 
Historical eraBronze Age, Iron Age
• Established
c. 700 BCE
• Disestablished
c. 400 CE
Today part of India
   Nepal

Both the Buddhist text Anguttara Nikaya and the Jaina text Bhagavati Sutra (Saya xv Uddesa I) included Vajji in their lists of solasa (sixteen) mahājanapadas.[2] The name of this mahājanapada was derived from one of its ruling clans, the Vṛjis. The Vajji state is indicated to have been a republic. This clan is mentioned by Pāṇini, Chanakya and Xuanzang.[3]

The territoryEdit

 
Ananda Stupa, built by the Licchavis at Vaishali, which served as the capital of Vajji, one of the world's earliest republics (Gaṇa sangha).

The territory of Vajji was located north of the Ganges in Bihar and extended up to the Madhesh region. On the west, the Gandaki River was probably the boundary between Vajji and the Malla mahājanapada and possibly also separated it from the Kosala mahājanapada. On the east, its territory probably extended up to the forests along the banks of the rivers Koshi and Mahananda. The capital of this mahājanapada was Vaishali. Other important towns and villages were Kundapura or Kundagrama (a suburb of Vaishali), Bhoganagara and Hatthigama.[4]

Ruling clansEdit

The rulers of Vajji were a confederacy of the eight clans (atthakula) of whom the Vajjis, the Licchavis, the Jñatrikas and the Videhas were the most important. Manudeva was a famous king of the Licchavi who desired Amrapali after he saw her dance in Vaishali.[5] The identities of the other four clans are not certain. However, in a passage of the Sutrakritanga, the Ugras, the Bhogas, the Kauravas and the Aikshvakas are associated with the Jñatris and Licchavis as the subjects of the same ruler and the members of the same assembly.[6]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c Patrick Olivelle (13 July 2006). Between the Empires: Society in India 300 BCE to 400 CE. Oxford University Press. pp. 15–. ISBN 978-0-19-977507-1.
  2. ^ Raychaudhuri Hemchandra (1972), Political History of Ancient India, Calcutta: University of Calcutta, pp.85-6
  3. ^ Raychaudhuri Hemchandra (1972), Political History of Ancient India, Calcutta: University of Calcutta, p.107
  4. ^ Raychaudhuri Hemchandra (1972), Political History of Ancient India, Calcutta: University of Calcutta, pp.105, 107
  5. ^ http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2013-01-31/books/31281015_1_amrapali-nagarvadhu-woman-warrior
  6. ^ Raychaudhuri Hemchandra (1972), Political History of Ancient India, Calcutta: University of Calcutta, pp.105-06