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Kingdom & Dynasties of North India

During the Early Medieval Period, a slew of kingdoms arose across India. In the north, there were the Palas, the Gurjara-Pratiharas, the Rajput kingdoms, and the Ghaznavids and Ghorids.

The Rashtrakutas ruled the Deccan. In the south, the Pallavas, Pandyas, and Cholas grew up.

North India

The Palas

The Palas ruled over Bengal, Bihar, and Jharkhand.

Rulers: The dynasty's first ruler was Gopala. He and his son Dharmapala expanded and strengthened the kingdom.

Dharmapala also promoted commerce with Southeast Asia.

Another king named Devapala conquered a portion of the present-day states of Assam and Orissa. The kingdom imploded following his demise. It was eventually destroyed in the mid-twelfth century.

The Palas were succeeded by the Sena dynasty.


The Pratiharas are believed to be Rajputs. They arrived in India as part of the Hun invasion and settled in the Punjab Rajputana region. They made their way quickly to Aravali and Ujjain.

The Gurjaras-Pratiharas were a branch of the Gujarat-based Pratiharas.

Decline: By the end of the tenth century, the Pratiharas' reputation had deteriorated, culminating in Rajyapala's humiliating defeat to Mahmood in 1018 A.D.

The successors of the Pratihars, such as Trilochanapala and Yasapala, ruled for an additional century. According to the historical sources, the Pratiharas in Kannauj were distinct from Gurjara-Pratiharas.


The Chandela Rajput clan ruled Bundelkhand from the tenth to the sixteenth centuries. When the Chandellas were feudatories, they took over a large portion of the Pratiharas of Kannauj's lands.

The Chandelas constructed the temple city of Khajuraho between the mid-10th and mid-11th centuries.

Temples: Khajuraho was considered as the Chandella emperors' capital city. A number of temples were built in this area. The most famous of these is the Kandariya Mahadev temple.

Bundelkhand was home to a thriving Jain population during the Chandela dynasty, which resulted in the construction of numerous Jain temples.

Kirtivarman was the most powerful ruler of the dynasty.

The Ghaznavid Dynsaty

The dynasty was founded by a converted Turkish slave, Subaktagin.

It was founded at the end of the ninth century during the protracted conflict between the Samanids, who were related to Iranians, and Turkish tribesmen.

In this regard, the Ghaznavids were both missionaries and fighters. Their foresight and willingness to endure great hardships for the sake of Islam enabled the newly formed Muslim republics of Central Asia to resist the Turks.

India was invaded several times between the years 1000 A.D. and 1500 A.D. The initial invasions were led by Mahmud of Ghazni.

Mahmud of Ghazni: Mahmud invaded India seventeen times over a twenty-five-year period (1000-1025 A.D.). His initial assaults were directed against the Hindushahi kings, whose domains extended from Punjab to Afghanistan. He also fought and imprisoned Jaipal and Anandpal.

The attacks that followed targeted India's temple towns. He looted the vast treasures contained in these temples and returned to his hometown with the loot.

Mahmud's most lethal attacks took place in 1018 A.D. against Mathura and Kannauj, and in 1025 A.D. against Somnath.

The treasures of Gujarat's Somnath temple have been completely looted. Even the priceless stones set into the temple's walls were removed.

In 1030 A.D., Mahmud was assassinated. His administrators were inept, and the Ghaznavid Empire gradually disintegrated over the years. As a result, there were no further invasions for nearly a century.


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