LAND, AGRICULTURE AND MONEY IN CENTRAL INDIA AND BEYOND (c.100 to c.1300 CE): The Feudal Order Revisited
The present monograph is an attempt to retrieve some aspects of economic history, with a distinctive focus on the role of land, agriculture and money in defining contours of socio-economic formation during a span of more than a millenium (circa 100 to circa 1300 CE). Data from more than four hundred and seventy settlements figuring in nearly 140 inscriptions, about forty archaeological sites and several numismatic finds (all represented in six maps) form the bases of this study. Spatially, it covers forested areas, plateaux, marshy creeks and coastal territories of Central India, the Northern Deccan and the West Indian Konkan coast. The chiefs of the Valkha (modern Bagh, near Gwalior in Madhya Pradesh) region, and the rulers of the different branches of the Vakatakas and the Silaharas and their people of varying social strata were the dramatics personae of this new, evolving and essentially land-based social formation, which has been unambiguously characterised here as ‘feudal’, notwithstanding their varying political/state formations. Therefore, all case studies included in this monograph also help us in comprehending the transition from the ‘Ancient’ to the ‘Early Medieval/Middle’ India in a nuanced manner.
Krishan Mohan Shrimali is a former Professor of History, University of Delhi.