|Question: Give an account of Socio, political, economic, religious and cultural conditions of Satavahana period?|
Ans: Shaatavaahanas followed religious tolerance policy. Though kings were followers of Vedic religion, they let their queens patronize Buddhism and other religions. Brahmins had respect in the society.
Shatavaahana kings started prefixing their mother names to their names. Gouthamiputhra Shatakarni, Vasistaputhra Shatakarni added their mother names to their names. Women were equally educated on par with men. Poetesses like
- Madhavi 2. Reva 3. Anpalabdhi 4. Anulakshmi helped Shaatavaahana king Haala in writing ‘Gaathaa Saptha Shathi’.
There were no widow remarriages. Women led disciplined and moral life. From Gaatha Saptha Shathi we can assume that people led very happy life.
Economic Conditions of Satavahana period: Land revenue was the main source of income for Satavahana Empire. That is why Shatavahana kings understood the importance of land development. Shatavaahana kings were the first to take measures for the development of agriculture in South India. Along with Cows and land, Shatavahana kings also imposed tax on Udakayanthramu, Garikaka Yanthramu (separates seeds from cotton).
Karukara was the tax imposed on handicrafts.
Shatavahana period people lived prosperous life. Internal and external trade was flourished. Prathishtaanapuramu, Nasik, Govardhanapuramu, Dhanyakatakamu, Vijayapuri were the main trading centers.
West Coast: Barukaccha, Sophara, Kalyani.
East Coast: Koddura, Ghantasaala, Maisolia (Machilipatnam).
Religious Conditions: Shaatavaahana kings followed Vedic religion. They also practiced religious tolerance.
Naganika mentioned the names of many Vedic Gods in Naneghat inscription. Gods like, Indra, Sankarsha, Agni, Vasudeva, Surya, Chandra, Varuna, Kubhera were mentioned in Naneghat inscription.
In Haala’s ‘Gaatha Saptha Shathi’ he mentioned Shiva, Keshava,Vaishnava Gods’ Sapthathi, Pashupati, Gauri, Parvathi, Ganapathi etc. Gods.
Gouthamiputhra Shaatakarni patronized many Brahmins and got epithets ‘Aagama Nilaya’ and ‘Eka Brahmana’.
Oldest Shivalinga in India belongs to Shaatavaahana period. Gudimallam Parameshwara temple is located in Chittoor.
Kondakundaachaarya, a jain guru authored ‘Samayasaaram’
Shaatavaahana architecture: Shaatavaahana kings were great builders. In ‘Indica’, Megasthanese mentioned that, 30 fortified cities were there in South India. Many Buddhist Shupas, Chaithra and Vihaaraas were constructed by Shaatavaahana kings.
At Karle, Kanheri, Nasik etc. places hills were hewn to make caves out of them. Those caves were dedicated to Buddhist and Jain monks.
Amaravathi and Jaggaiahpeta sthupas were constructed with bricks. The beauty of Amaravthi style of architect influenced the South Indian architecture.