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Title: Feudalism in northern India (c. 700-1200 A.D.)
Author: Gopal, Krishna K.
Awarding Body: SOAS University of London
Current Institution: SOAS, University of London
Date of Award: 1962
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Chapter I gives a brief account of the work already done by other scholars, the original sources which have been user by us and points out the import of the terms used in the present study. In chapter II we discuss some of the important factors which lead to the origin of feudalism in northern India. Chapter III deals with the growth of feudal elements in the composition of the royal armies of the period and the dependence of the kings on the levies of their feudatories. Chapter IV concerns the role of forts in the wars of the period. In chapter V we deal with the growing tendency to remunerate state servants with feudal assignments and emphasise that royal kinsmen often received similar assignments for their maintenance. In chapter VI we analyse the terms for various administrative units in the records of the period and point out the growth of feudal elements in the administration of the kingdoms. Chapter VIII attempts to determine the meaning of several of the feudal titles appearing in the records of the period and demonstrates that there were many grades of feudatories. In chapter VIII we discuss the import of the title pacamahasabda and the nature of this privilege, which was conferred by an overlord over persons from among his feudatories. Chapter IX deals with the relations of a feudatory with his overlord, the rights he enjoyed, the control exercised by his overlord and the obligations which a feudatory owed to his overlord. In chapter X we discuss all the available references to the existence of a samanta assembly or to the samanta as functioning as a body. Chapter XI focuses attention on the increased burdens of taxation which resulted from the feudalisation of state structure. In chapter XII we call attention to the chivalric rules which guided the conduct of a warrior and some interesting customs which appear to be connected with feudal ideas of honour and dishonour. In chapter XIII we attempt, on the basis of a comparison with the European Middle Ages, to determine whether the term feudalism is suitable for describing the institutions of the early mediaeval period in India. The Appendix deals with the date of the Lekhapaddhati, which is found to reflect the institutions of the early mediaeval period.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral