|Official languages||Sanskrit, Marwari, Malwi|
|Succeeding states||Rathors, Delhi Sultanate|
Vincent Smith believed that the Pratiharas were certainly of Gurjara (or Gujjar) origin, and stated that there is possibility of other Agnikula Rajput clans being of same origin. Dr. K. Jamanadas also states that the Pratihara clan of Rajputs descended from the Gujjars, and this "raises a strong presumption that the other Rajput clans also are the descendants from the Gurjaras or the allied foreign immigrants". D. B. Bhandarkar also believed that Pratiharas were a clan of Gujjars. In his book The Glory that was Gujardesh (1943), Gurjar writer K. M. Munshi stated that the Pratiharas and some other Rajput clans were of Gujjar (or Gurjar) origin.
However, some other historians believe that although some sections of the Pratiharas (eg. the one to which Mathanadeva belonged) were Gujjars by caste, the imperial Pratiharas of Kannauj were not Gujjars. H. A. Rose and Denzil Ibbetson stated that there is no conclusive proof that the Agnikula Rajput clans are of Gurjara origin; they believed that there is possibility of the indigenous tribes adopting Gurjara names, when their founders were enfiefed by Gurjara rulers.
Nagabhata I (730-756) extended his control east and south from Mandor, conquering Malwa as far as Gwalior and the port of Bharuch in Gujarat. He established his capital at Avanti in Malwa, and checked the expansion of the Arabs, who had established themselves in Sind. In this Battle of Rajasthan (738 CE) Nagabhatta led a confedracy of Rajput clans to defeat the Muslim Arabs who had till then been pressing on victorious through West Asia and Iran.
Vatsaraja sought to capture Kannauj, which had been the capital of the seventh-century empire of Harsha. His ambitions brought the Pratiharas into conflict with the Pala dynasty of Bengal and the Rashtrakutas of the northern Deccan, with whom they would contest for primacy in northern India for the next two centuries. Vatsaraja unsuccessfully challenged the Pala ruler Dharmapala (c. 775-810) for control of Kannauj. In about 786 the Rashtrakuta ruler Dhruva (c. 780-793) crossed the Narmada River into Malwa, and from there tried to capture Kannauj. Vatsaraja was defeated by Dhruva around 800, and died in 805.
Vatsraja was succeeded by Nagabhata II (805-833). Nagabhata II was initially defeated by the Rashtrakuta king Govinda III (793-814), but later recovered Malwa from the Rashtrakutas, conquered Kannauj and the Ganges plain as far as Bihar from the Palas, and again checked the Muslims in the west. He rebuilt the great Shiva temple at Somnath in Gujarat, which had been demolished in an Arab raid from Sind. Kannauj became the center of the Pratihara state, which covered much of northern India during the peak of their power, c. 836-910.
Rambhadra (833-c. 836) briefly succeeded Nagabhata II. Bhoja I or Mihirbhoj (c. 836-886) suffered some initial defeats by the Pala king Devapala (810-850), but recovered to expand the Pratihara dominions west to the border of Sind, east to Magadha, and south to the Narmada. His son Mahendrapala I (885-910) expanded further eastwards in Magadha, Bengal, and Assam. Junaid, the successor of Qasim, finally subdued the Hindu resistance within Sindh. Taking advantage of the conditions in Western India, which at that time was covered with several small states, Junaid led a large army into the region in early 738 CE. Dividing this force into two he plundered several cities in southern Rajasthan, western Malwa, and Gujarat. The Arab chroniclers claim that he acquired immense wealth, slaughtered large numbers of infidels, and returned
Bhoja II (910-912) was overthrown by Mahipala (912-914). Several feudatories of the empire took advantage of the temporary weakness of the Pratiharas to declare their independence, notably the Paramaras of Malwa, the Chandelas of Bundelkhand, and the Kalachuris of Mahakoshal. The Rashtrakuta king Indra III (c.914-928) briefly captured Kannauj in 916, and although the Pratiharas regained the city, their position continued to weaken in the 10th century, partly as a result of the drain of simultaneously fighting off Turkic attacks from the west and the Pala advances in the east. The Pratiharas lost control of Rajasthan to other Rajput clans, and the Chandelas captured the strategic fortress of Gwalior in central India, c. 950. By the end of the tenth century the Pratihara domains had dwindled to a small kingdom centered on Kannauj. Mahmud of Ghazni sacked Kannauj in 1018, and the Pratihara king Rajapala fled. The Chandela ruler Gauda captured and killed Rajapala, placing Rajapala's son Trilochanpala on the throne as a proxy. Jasapala, the last Pratihara king of Kanauj, died in 1036.
The Pariharas of Mandore, Marwar lost control of the region in the 13th century to the Rathor clan of Rajputs. In 1395, Chundaji Rathore married a Parihar princess named Mohil. The Parihar Raja Dhara Singh established the state of Nagod in 1344, and his descendants ruled there until 1950.
It can be understood from many Arabic sources that armies of the Muslim invaders greatly feared the might of the Pratiharas.
List of rulers:
Indian inscriptions confirm this invasion but record the Arab success only against the smaller states in Gujarat. They also record the defeat of the Arabs at two places. The southern army moving south into Gujarat was repulsed at Navsari by the Solankis and Rashtrakutas. The army that went east, after sacking several places, reached Avanti whose ruler Nagabhatta Pratihara trounced the invaders and forced them to flee. After his victory Nagabhatta took advantage of the disturbed conditions to acquire control over the numerous small states up to the border of Sindh.
Junaid probably died from the wounds inflicted in the battle with the Pratihara Rajputs. His successor Tamin organized a fresh army and attempted to avenge Junaid’s defeat towards the close of the year 738 CE. But this time Nagabhatta Pratihara, with his Chauhan and Guhilot feudatories, met the Muslim army before it could leave the borders of Sindh. The battle resulted in the complete rout of the Arabs who fled broken into Sindh with the Rajput clans close behind them.
In the words of the Arab chronicler, “a place of refuge to which the Muslims might flee was not to be found.” The Arabs crossed over to the other side of the River Indus, abandoning all their lands to the victorious Hindus. The local chieftains took advantage of these conditions to re-establish their independence. Subsequently the Arabs constructed the city of Mansurah on the other side of the wide and deep Indus, which was safe from attack. This became their new capital in Sindh.
Thus began the reign of the Imperial Pratiharas and the Rajput Period of Indian History
In the Gwalior inscription it is recorded that Nagabhatta “crushed the large army of the powerful Mlechcha king.” This large army consisted of cavalry, infantry, siege artillery, and probably a force of camels. Since Tamin was a new governor he had a force of Syrian cavalry from Damascus, local Arab contingents, converted Hindus of Sindh, and foreign mercenaries like the Turks. All together the invading army may have had anywhere between 10-15,000 cavalry, 5000 infantry, and 2000 camels.
The Arab chronicler Sulaiman describes the army of the Imperial Pratiharas as it stood in 851 CE, “This king maintains numerous forces and no other Indian prince has so fine a cavalry. He is unfriendly to the Arabs, still he acknowledges that the king of the Arabs is the greatest of kings. Among the princes of India there is no greater foe of the Islamic faith than he. He has got riches, and his camels and horses are numerous.”
But at the time of the Battle of Rajasthan the Pratihars had only just risen to power. In fact Nagabhatta was their first prominent ruler. But the composition of his army, which was predominantly cavalry, is clear from the description. There are other anecdotal references to the Indian kings and commanders riding elephants to have a clear view of the battlefield. The infantry stood behind the elephants and the cavalry formed the wings and advanced guard.
At the time of the battle the Pratihar Rajputs may have had up to 5000 cavalry, while their Guhilot and Chauhan feudatories may have had 2000 horsemen each, added to which we may include infantry, camels, and elephants. So all told the Hindu and Muslim armies were evenly matched with the better cavalry in the former.
Following their victory the Pratiharas (Parihar) spread their rule over North India. The Guhilot Rajputs under their leader Khommana (Bappa Rawal) captured Chittor from the Mori Rajputs (who had been weakened by the Arab raid) and the Chauhans established a kingdom in North Rajasthan. Along with their Parihar overlords these clans formed a recognized clan hierarchy (miscalled feudalism), and a hereditary ownership of lands and forts, both of which are hallmarks of the Rajput clan-system. While the word Rajput is derived from the Sanskrit Rajaputra in the Vedic texts, the history of the Rajputs really begins with the clan confederacy that defeated the Arab invaders.
The Arabs in Sindh took a long time to recover from their defeat. In the early 9th Century the governor Bashar attempted an invasion of India but was defeated by Nagabhatta II and his subordinates, Govindraja Chauhan and Khommana II Guhilot. Even a naval expedition sent by the Caliphs was defeated by the Saindhava Rajputs of Kathiawar. After this the Arab chroniclers admit that the Caliph Mahdi, “gave up the project of conquering any part of India.”
The Arabs in Sindh lost all power and broke up into two warring states of Mansurah and Multan, both of which paid tribute to the Pratiharas. The local resistance in Sindh, which had not yet died out and was inspired by the victories of their Rajput neighbors manifested itself when the foreign rulers were overthrown and Sindh came under its own half-converted Hindu dynasties like the Sumras and Sammas.
DEWAN SHATRUGHAN SINGH RANI RAJENDRA KUMARI Rath is the home tehsil of two great Indian freedom fighters and the father of the freedom movement in the whole of Bundelkhand, Dewan Shatrughan Singh [aka 'Bundelkhand Gandhi' & 'Bundelkhand Kesri'] & his wife Rani Rajendra Kumari. These were the two fountain heads of the freedom movement in all of Bundelkhand. They also were the main patrons of revolutionaries like Chandrashekhar Azad who frequented their Castle in their native village of Maungrauth. The Rani defeated the sitting UP Chief Minister C.B. Gupta as an independent candidate. They were also the main inspiration behind the Bhoodaan movement in Bundelkhand and Maungraut changed the history of the movement by becoming the first complete Gramdaan.
Numerous scholars have done PhD's on the life of these 2 great Indian patriots. There is an annual mela on the birthday of these two stalwarts held annually in Maungrauth in December and is attended by over 40,000 people. They opened numerous colleges and libraries in the Bundelkhand region and none were named after them. The district hospital of Hamirpur is named after Dewan Sahib after his death.
Despite being from one of the most affluent families in Central India this couple sacrificed everything for the nation and donated their lands to the poor even prior to 1947. They were in British jails for the freedom struggle for over 9 years each. They are now the subject of folk tales and songs highlighting their bravery and hailing them as symbols of Bundelkhandi valor.
Ancient Idol Recovered in Temple Restoration: It Seems Idol Belongs to Pratihara Period; Hillock Found Is Possibly Ruins of Either Mauryan or Parmar Period
Nov 07, 2012; A team from Indore of the archeology department brought idol recovered from a tunnel at a 300-year-old temple in Jhabua to the...