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Harshavardhan Facts Harshavardhan (606-647 A.D.): Several historical sources of information about the reign of Harshavardhan or the seventh century are Hieun Tsang's account in his book, Si-Yu-Ki

Harsha's Rise to Power: The news of the death of Rajyavarman reached his younger brother Harshavardhan , who now immersed himself in 606 A.D. and proceeded to avenge his brothers death and release his sister. His first expedition against Gaudas was a failure, but was soon to extend his authority.

Harsha's generally regarded as the last great Hindu emperor of India, but he was neither a staunch Hindu nor the ruler of the whole country. His authority was limited to the north India except Kashmir, Rajasthan, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Orrisa were under his direct control, but his sphere of influence spread over a much wider area.

Facts To Remember
  • The place where Harshavardhan conveyed a grand assembly to publicise the doctrines of Mahayana: Kanauj
  • The venue where Pulakesin II defeated Harshavardhan : On the banks of river Narmada
  • The Chinese ruler who sent three embassies to Harsha court : T'ang
Harshavardhan Art

Important Officials In The Harsha Administration
Mahasandhi Vigzahak Officer to decide about war and peace
Mahabaladhikrit Highest official of the Army
Baladhikrit The commander
Vrihadeshwawar Had of Cavalry
Ayuktak Ordinary officer
Katuk Had of elephant brigade
Doot Rajastharuya Foreign Minister
Uparik Maharaj Provincial head

Hieun Tsang
Hieun Tsang's Visit to India
In 6 to 9 A.D. Hieun Tsang, a Chinese pilgrim, started of a journey from China to India to study in the Buddhist University, Nalanda. He spent many years in the court of Harshavardhan and influenced the king to convert to Buddhism. He also reported what he witnessed in his book Si-Yu-Ki which means My Experiences. It is also called Records of the Western World.

Nalanda University
Kumara Gupta, the Gupta king founded Nalanda University in the fifth century A.D. which became the principal seat of learning during Harsha's time. Dharmapala served as Vice Chancellor of this university during Harsha's time.

Harsha , the Great Scholar
Harsha was a lover of literature and he himself wrote three dramas: Ratnavali, Nagananda and Priyadarshika, Bana, a great scholar wrote Harshacharita and Kadambari. Haridatta and Jayasena were also patronised by Harsha.

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