Kalhana

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Kalhana (कल्हण) (c. 12th century), a Kashmiri, was the author of Rajatarangini (Chronicle of Kings), an account of the history of Kashmir. He wrote the work in Sanskrit between 1148 and 1149. All information regarding his life has to be deduced from his own writing, a major scholar of which is Mark Aurel Stein. Robin Donkin has argued that with the exception of Kalhana, "there are no literary works with a developed sense of chronology, or indeed much sense of place, before the thirteenth century".

Life

He was born to a Kashmiri minister, Canpaka, who probably served king Harsa of the Lohara dynasty. It is possible that his birthplace was Parihasapura and his birth would have been very early in the 12th century. It is extremely likely that he was of the Hindu Brahmin caste, suggested in particular by his knowledge of Sanskrit. The introductory verses to each of the eight Books in his Rajatarangini are prefaced with prayers to Shiva, a Hindu deity. In common with many Hindus in Kashmir at that time, he was also sympathetic to Buddhism, and Buddhists tended to reciprocate this feeling towards Hindus. Even in relatively modern times, Buddha's birthday has been a notable event for Kashmiri Brahmins and well before Kalhana's time Buddha had been accepted by Hindus as an avatar of Vishnu.Stein, Vol. 1, p....
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