Indrabhishek was a ceremony performed by Indian kings and mentioned in the Aiteraya Brahmanas.
With the loss of political power to the Turks
and collapse of tradition, Indrabhishek was relegated to the background. The Yadavas
were the last to perform a coronation but whether they performed Indrabhishek ceremony is not clear. Shivaji
revived it. Gagabhat
wrote a detailed book on the procedure. Accordingly it was then performed.
A thread ceremony (Upanayanam) of Shivaji took place on May 29, 1674, and then a Vratya Stoma ceremony was performed.
Some historians attribute the need for the coronation to resentment by the other Maratha Deccan
nobles of Shivaji's success (he being a Bhosale
) and his taking a higher seat than them at state dinners. Shivaji claimed he was of the line of Vishwamitra
in his danpatra
(donation). Late nineteenth century theories are not valid.
Modern interpretations vary, but this coronation ceremony created a legacy. After the death of Shivaji, Marathas fought the mughals and defeated them in the war of 27 years. This demonstrated that coronation was an instrument of sovereignty valid in other parts of the world.