Vijayanagara metropolitan area

Vijayanagara Metropolitan Area

Vijayanagara metropolitan area

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The Vijayanagara metropolitan area comprised the urban core of the imperial city and the surrounding principalities of the capital of the Vijayanagara empire in the time period spanning early 14th. century to the middle of 16th. century C.E.

Abdur Razzak, the Persian traveller who visited Vijayanagara in 1440 C.E. wrote of six fortifications before reaching the gates of the royal palace. The areas between the first and second and between the second and third fortification was large and contained agricultural fields, gardens and many residences. From the notes of Robert Sewell it becomes clear that between the third fortification up to the actual fortress, one came across countless people, shops, bazaars. From their accounts the area of the greater metropolitan area of Vijayanagara was about 540 km² which is about 25 times larger than the area comprising the main administrative, sacred and royal centers. The tourist zone itself is limited to the inner urban core.

Over the years, archaeological surveys have helped document over 700 sites spanning a time frame from 3rd. century BCE to early 2nd. millennium, including ash mounds, settlements, megalithic cemeteries, temples and sites of rock art. It is clear that the Vijayanagara area was well settled for a period long before the formation of the empire. Surveys conduced by the Vijayanagar Metropolitan Survey has estimated that the real size of the metropolitan city may have been some 650 km² of which a...
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