Lords of the Deccan:
SOUTHERN INDIA FROM THE CHALUKYAS TO THE CHOLAS
A new history of the medieval Deccan, out now!
The history of the vast Indian subcontinent is usually told as a series of ephemeral moments when a large part of modern-day India was ruled by a single sovereign. There is an obsession with foreign invasions and the polities of the Gangetic plains, while the histories of the rest of the subcontinent have been reduced to little more than dry footnotes. Now, in this brilliant and critically acclaimed debut book, Anirudh Kanisetti shines a light into the darkness, bringing alive for the lay-reader the early medieval Deccan, from the sixth century CE to the twelfth century CE, in all its splendour and riotous glory.
It is a world of bloody elephant warfare and brutal military stratagems; of alliances and betrayals; where a broken king commits ritual suicide, and a shrewd hunchbacked prince founds his own kingdom under his powerful brother’s nose. This is a world where a king writes a bawdy play that is a parable for religious contestation; where the might of India’s rulers and the wealth of its cities were talked of from Arabia to Southeast Asia; and where south Indian kingdoms serially invaded and defeated those of the north. This painstakingly researched forgotten history of India will keep you riveted and enthralled. You will never see the history of the subcontinent the same way again.