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The Vishnu Purana, translated by Horace Hayman Wilson, [1840], at

p. 416


The Yádava race, or descendants of Yadu. Kárttavírya obtains a boon from Dattátreya: takes Rávańa prisoner: is killed by Paraśuráma: his descendants.

I WILL first relate to you the family of Yadu, the eldest son of Yayáti, in which the eternal immutable Vishńu descended upon earth in a portion of his essence 1; of which the glory cannot be described, though for ever hymned in order to confer the fruit of all their wishes--whether they desired virtue, wealth, pleasure, or liberation--upon all created beings, upon men, saints, heavenly quiristers, spirits of evil, nymphs, centaurs, serpents, birds, demons, gods, sages, Brahmans, and ascetics. Whoever hears the account of the race of Yadu shall be released from all sin; for the supreme spirit, that is without form, and which is called Vishńu, was manifested in this family.

Yadu had four sons, Sahasrajit, Krosht́i, Nala, and Raghu 2. Śatajit was the son of the elder of these, and he had three sons, Haihaya, Veńu 3, and Haya. The son of Haihaya was Dharmanetra 4; his son was Kuntí 5; his son was Sáhanji 6; his son was Mahishmat 7; his son

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was Bhadrasena 8; his son was Durdama; his son was Dhanaka 9, who had four sons, Kritavíryya, Kritágni, Kritavarman, and Kritaujas. Kritavíryya's son was Arjuna, the sovereign of the seven Dwípas, the lord of a thousand arms. This prince propitiated the sage Dattátreya, the descendant of Atri, who was a portion of Vishńu, and solicited and obtained from him these boons--a thousand arms; never acting unjustly; subjugation of the world by justice, and protecting it equitably; victory over his enemies; and death by the hands of a person renowned in the three regions of the universe. With these means he ruled over the whole earth with might and justice, and offered ten thousand sacrifices. Of him this verse is still recited; "The kings of the earth will assuredly never pursue his steps in sacrifice, in munificence, in devotion, in courtesy, and in self-control." In his reign nothing was lost or injured; and so he governed the whole earth with undiminished health, prosperity, power, and might, for eighty five thousand years. Whilst sporting in the waters of the Narmadá, and elevated with wine, Rávańa came on his tour of triumph to the city Máhishmatí, and there he who boasted of overthrowing the gods, the Daityas, the Gandharbas and their king, was taken prisoner by Kárttavírya, and confined like a tame beast in a corner of his capital 10. At the expiration of his long reign Kárttavírya was killed by Paraśuráma, who was an embodied portion of the mighty Náráyańa 11. Of the hundred sons of this king, the five principal were Śúra 12, Śúrasena, Vrishańa 13, Madhu 14, and

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[paragraph continues] Jayadhwaja 15. The son of the last was Tálajangha, who had a hundred sons, called after him Tálajanghas: the eldest of these was Vítihotra; another was Bharata 16, who had two sons, Vrisha and Sujátí 17. The son of Vrisha was Madhu 18; he had a hundred sons, the chief of whom was Vrishńi, and from him the family obtained the name of Vrishńi 19. From the name of their father, Madhu, they were also called Mádhavas; whilst from the denomination of their common ancestor Yadu, the whole were termed Yádavas 20.

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This page consists solely of footnotes.


416:1 Or, 'in which Krishńa was born.' It might have been expected, from the importance of this genealogy, that it would have been so carefully preserved, that the authorities would have closely concurred in its details. Although, however, the leading specifications coincide, yet, as we shall have occasion to notice, great and irreconcilable variations occur.

416:2 The two first generally agree. There are differences in the rest; as,

















[paragraph continues] The Bráhma and Hari V. read Sahasráda for the first name; and the Linga has Balasani in place of Nala. The Agni makes Śatajit also a son of Yadu.

416:3 Veńuhaya: Bhágavata, &c. Uttánahaya: Padma. Vet́t́ahaya: Matsya. They were the sons of Sahasráda: Bráhma and Hari V.

416:4 Dharmatantra: Váyu. Dharma: Kúrma.

416:5 Kírtti: Váyu.

416:6 Sanjneya: Váyu. Sankana: Agni. Sahanja of Sahanjani pura: Bráhma. Sanjnita: Linga. Sanhana: Matsya. Sohanji: Bhágavata.

416:7 By whom the city of Máhíshmatí on the Narbadda was founded: Bráhma P., Hari V.

417:8 So the Bhágavata; but the Váyu, more correctly, has Bhadrasreńya. See p. 407. n. 12.

417:9 Kanaka: Váyu, &c. Varaka: Linga. Andhaka: Kúrma.

417:10 According to the Váyu, Kárttavírya was the aggressor, invading Lanká, and there taking Rávańa prisoner. The circumstances are more usually narrated as in our text.

417:11 See page 402. Kárttavírya's fate was the consequence of an imprecation denounced by Ápava or Vaśisht́ha, the son of Varuńa, whose hermitage had been burnt, according to the Mahábhárata, Rája-dharma, by Chitrabhánu, or Fire, to whom the king had in his bounty presented the world. The Váyu makes the king himself the incendiary, with arrows given him by Súrya to dry up the ocean.

417:12 Urjjita: Bhágavata.

417:13 Vrishabha: Bhágavata. Dhrisht́a: Matsya. Dhrishńa: Kúrma. Prishokta: Padma. Vrishńi: Linga. Krishńáksha: Bráhma.

417:14 Krishńa, in all except the Bhágavata.

418:15 King of Avanti: Bráhma and Hari Vanśa.

418:16 Ananta: Váyu and Agni; elsewhere omitted.

418:17 Durjaya only: Váyu, Matsya.

418:18 This Madhu, according to the Bhágavata, was the son of Kárttavírya. The Bráhma and Hari V. make him the son of Vrisha, but do not say whose son Vrisha was. The commentator on the latter asserts that the name is a synonyme of Payoda, the son of Yadu, according to his authority, and to that alone.

418:19 The Bhágavata agrees with our text, but the Bráhma, Hari V., Linga, and Kúrma make Vrishańa the son of Madhu, and derive the family name of Vrishńis or Várshńeyas from him.

418:20 The text takes no notice of some collateral tribes, which appear to merit remark. Most of the other authorities, in mentioning the sons of Jayadhwaja, observe that from them came the five great divisions of the Haihaya tribe. These, according to the Váyu, were the Tálajanghas, Vítihotras, Ávantyas, Tuńd́ikeras, and Játas. The Matsya and Agni omit the first, and substitute Bhojas; and the latter are included in the list in the Bráhma, Padma, Linga, and Hari V. For Játas the reading is Sanjátas or Sujátas. The Bráhma P. has also Bháratas, who, as well as the Sujátas, are not commonly specified, it is said, 'from their great number.' They are in all probability invented by the compiler out of the names of the text, Bharata and Sujáti. The situation of these tribes is central India, for the capital of the Tálajanghas was Máhishmatí or Chulí-Maheswar, still called, according to Col. Tod, Sahasra-báhuki-basti, 'the village of the thousand-armed;' that is, of Kárttavíryya. Annals of Rajasthan, I. 39. n. The Tuńd́ikeras and Vítihotras are placed in the geographical lists behind the Vindhyan mountains, and the termination -kaira is common in the valley of the Narmadá, as Bairkaira, &c., or we may have Tuńd́ikera abbreviated, as Tuńd́ari on the Tapti. The Ávantyas were in Ujayin, and the Bhojas were in the neighbourhood probably of Dhár in Malwa. These tribes must have preceded, then, the Rajput tribes, by whom these countries are now occupied, or Rahtores, Chauhans, Pawars, Gehlotes, and the rest. There are still some vestiges of them, and a tribe of Haihayas still exists, at the top of the valley of Sohagpur in Bhagel-khańd́, aware of their ancient lineage, and though p. 419 few in number, celebrated for their valour. Tod's Rajasthan, I. 39. The scope of the traditions regarding them, especially of their overrunning the country, along with Śakas and other foreign tribes, in the reign preceding that of Sagara (see p. 373), indicates their foreign origin also; and if we might trust to verbal resemblances, we might suspect that the Hayas and Haihayas of the Hindus had some connexion with the Hia, Hoiei-ke, Hoiei-hu, and similarly denominated Hun or Turk tribes, who make a figure in Chinese history. Des Guignes, Histoire des Huns, I. 7, 55, 231. II. 253, &c. At the same time it is to be observed that these tribes do not make their appearance until some centuries after the Christian era, and the scene of their first exploits is far from the frontiers of India: the coincidence of appellation may be therefore merely accidental. In the word Haya, which properly means 'a horse,' it is not impossible, however, that we have a confirmatory evidence of the Scythian origin of the Haihayas, as Col. Tod supposed; although we cannot with him imagine the word 'horse' itself is derived from haya. Rajasthan, I. 76.

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