March 7

Parantaka Chola I: The consolidator and Madurakonda

The foundation of the Chola Empire was laid by Vijayalaya Chola and Aditya Chola I but it was further enhanced by Parantaka Chola I. Just three years after ascending the throne, he attacked the Pandyas, captured Madura and assumed the title of Madurakonda.

Born as Veera Narayan to Aditya Chola I and Tribhuvanamadeviyar in 873 CE in Tiruvorriyur, Parantaka Chola I assumed the throne in 907 CE and ruled for around 48 years, conquering Rajasimhan II and annexing the Pandyas. During his reign the Cholas were quite successful in increasing their territories and wealth. The entire Madura and Pandya territories were absorbed into the Chola territory after Maravarman Rajsimha II escaped to Ceylon.


Continuing the expansion started by his father Aditya Chola I, he invaded the Pandya territory in 915 CE and captured Madurai.

Soon after ascending the throne Parantaka Chola I tuned his ambitious eyes towards the Pandya kingdom which was flourishing a lot in those days. Continuing the expansion started by his father Aditya Chola I, he invaded the Pandya territory in 915 CE and captured Madurai. The Pandyan ruler Maravarman Rajasinha II sought the help of Kassapa V of Anuradhapura and was provided with an army in return. The combined armies of both the rulers were defeated by Parantaka Chola I in the battle of Vellore. The Pandya king Maravaraman Rajsimha II escaped to Ceylon and Parantaka Chola I annexed the entire Pandya territory to his empire.

In order to celebrate his victory, he wished to take the crown of the Pandyan monarchy for himself. However, the Pandyan king had already carried it away with him and left it in the safe custody of the Lankan king. Parantaka I invaded Lanka but the Lankan king Udaya IV took the crown and jewels and hid himself in the Rohana hills, and so the armies of Parantaka Chola I had to return empty handed.

He took the title of Maduraiyum Eelamum Konda Parakesarivarman.


The two sons of Aditya Chola I namely Parantaka Chola I and Kannara Deva were born of different mothers. The mother of Parantaka Chola I was a Chera princess while the mother of Kannara Deva was a Rashtrakuta princess. After the death of Aditya Chola I, Parantaka Chola I became the king. However, the Rashtrakuta king wished his grandson Kannara Deva to be the successor of Aditya Chola I. Infuriated by this, Krishna II led by prince Indra III invaded the Chola kingdom. The Chola side was led by King Parantaka Chola I and prince Rajaditya. The battle of Vallala took place in 911 CE in which a large number of Rashtrakuta soldiers died and the army was completely routed. Krishna III withdrew from the battle and Chola forces advanced further and compelled the Rashtrakutas to leave their territory.

However, in 949 CE, the Rashtrakuta king Krishna III again invaded the Chola kingdom. Parantaka Chola I sent his son Rajaditya as the commander of the Chola forces. He was supported by a number of military personnel from the Chera kingdom. In the battle of Takkolam, Rajaditya died on the battlefield and the Chola garrison was defeated.

An account of the battle is found in the Atakur inscription issued by Krishna III and prince Butuga II of the western Ganga family.


During the reign of Parantaka Chola I, The Chola Empire comprised almost the whole Tamil country up to Nellore in Andhra Pradesh. Extensive conquests were made, and Parantaka Chola I defeated the kings of the Deccan kingdom by 912 CE and completed the conquests started by his father Aditya Chola I.


From his inscriptions we know that Parantaka Chola I had many wives of whom about 11 appear in his various inscriptions. He bore numerous titles like Viranarayana, Virakirti, Vira- Chola, Vikrama Chola, Devendran, Chakravartin, Panditavatsalan, etc.

He took keen interest in the internal administration of his country. He laid out the rules for the conduct of the village assemblies and introduced many reforms for the proper administration of local self- government. Agriculture prospered during his reign, and he dug numerous canals for the benefit of his people.

Parantaka Chola I donated the booty collected from his wars to numerous temple charities. He was a devout Shaivite and covered the Chidambaram Shiva temple with golden roof.

Parantaka Chola I died in 955 CE and was succeeded by his second son Ganaraditya.

Ocean Media
© 2024 Ocean Media. All Rights Reserved.