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Rajput - The Real Rulers Of The World


शूरबाहूषु लोकोऽयं लम्बते पुत्रवत् सदा ।
तस्मात् सर्वास्ववस्थासु शूरः सम्मानमर्हित।।
न िह शौर्यात् परं िकं चित् ित्रलोके षु िवधते।
शूरः सर्वं पालयित सर्वं शूरे पर्ितिष्ठतम् ।।

Arms of the brave (kshatriya) always support and sustain the people like (a father his) son. A brave (kshatriya) is, for this reason, honoured by all, in all situations. There is nothing in all the three worlds, which is beyond (the reach of) bravery. Brave (kshatriya) sustains all, and all depend upon the brave.
(Mahabharata, Shanti Parva, 99. 17-18)

Rajput, (raja-putra: "son of a king") is a hindu kshatriya caste. The Rajputs trace their origins to the ancient Kshatriya dynasties of India. It is estimated that currently there are 12 million Rajputs.

Bhagwan Ram and Lakshmana are referred to as Rajaputra in Mahabharata. Bhagwan Buddha was also referred to as Rajaputra in Buddhist texts.   Read More

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Rajput Pride and Rajput Song for all Devotee of Mother Earth



Rajput Honour



Rajput Sena




Rajput Animals



Rajasthani Folk Music for Rajput



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All You Need To Know About Rajasthan Rajput - Rakesh Lashkari


Rajputs

PRONUNCIATION: RAHJ-puts
ALTERNATE NAMES: Ksatriya caste
LOCATION: India (Rajasthan state)
POPULATION: 120 million
LANGUAGE: Language or dialect of their region

RELIGION: Hinduism

1 • INTRODUCTION

"Rajput" identifies numerous ksatriya or warrior castes in northern and western India. The term "Rajput" comes from rajaputra, which means "son of kings." Rajputs are famed for their fighting abilities and once ruled numerous Indian princely states. The British grouped many of these states into the Rajputana Province. Today, it is the Indian state of Rajasthan.
Most believe Rajputs come from tribes in central Asia such as the Parthians, Kushans, Shakas, and Huns. These groups entered India as conquerors and became kings or rulers. They often married high-caste Hindu women or converted to Hinduism. By the ninth century, Rajputs controlled an empire that extended from Sind to the lower Ganges Valley, and from the Himalayan foothills to the Narmada River.
In 1192, Prithviraj Chauhan led the Rajputs against the Muslim Mughal ruler Muhammad Ghuri (d. 1206) who defeated them at the second battle of Tarain, near Delhi. This firmly established Muslim power and ended Rajput dominance. The only Rajput kingdoms that could challenge Mughal rule were those in the great Thar Desert.
In the eighteenth century, many Rajput states came under control of Marathas and, by the early nineteenth century, the British. Many Rajput kings retained a status as rulers of princely states under the British. This ended when India gained its independence in 1947.

2 • LOCATION

About 120 million people in India call themselves Rajputs. They live throughout northern India, although Rajasthan is considered their cultural homeland.

3 • LANGUAGE

Rajputs speak the language or dialect of their region. In Rajasthan, Rajputs speak one of the dialects of Rajasthani, which sounds a little like Hindi. Some Rajasthani dialects include Jaipuri, spoken in Jaipur, and Marwari, spoken in Marwar.

4 • FOLKLORE

Many folktales describe Rajput exploits. In one story, a ksatriya (warrior) clan leader decided to kill all Brahman (priest and scholar) men after learning a Brahman had killed his father. This meant Brahman females had to marry ksatriya men and gave rise to various Rajput dynasties. In another story, gods created some ksatriya clans on Mount Abu in Rajasthan to help fight Buddhists and foreigners. These Rajputs were known as the agnikula ("fire-race") and were the ancestors of clans such as the Chauhan, Solanki, and Ponwar Rajputs. Other Rajput clans trace their ancestry to the Sun or Moon.

5 • RELIGION

Most Rajputs are Hindu. They were known for protecting Hinduism against Buddhism and Islam. Today, in their religious practices, Rajputs differ little from other high-caste Hindus. They use Brahmans (priests and scholars) for ceremonial and ritual purposes. They worship all major Hindu deities. Most Rajputs are devotees of the god Shiva. Many also worship Surya (the Sun God), and Durga as Mother Goddess. In addition, nearly every Rajput clan has its own patron god to whom it turns for protection.

6 • MAJOR HOLIDAYS

Rajputs celebrate all major Hindu holy days. Of particular importance is Dasahara, a festival dedicated to Durga (the Mother Goddess). It is customary for Rajputs to sacrifice a buffalo to the goddess, in commemoration of her victory over buffalo-demon Mahisha. The animal is beheaded with one stroke of a sword. The meat is usually distributed to servants or lower caste groups.

7 • RITES OF PASSAGE

Rajputs celebrate major stages in life with twelve ceremonies called karams.
When a boy is born, a family Brahman (member of the highest social class) records details for the infant's horoscope. A family barber informs relatives and friends of the birth, and there is much celebration. The Brahman chooses a favorable day to name the infant. When the child is about two years old, a head-shaving ritual takes place. Many Rajputs regard the birth of a daughter as a misfortune and observe the day with little ceremony.
One important rite of passage for Rajput boys is tying of the janeu or sacred thread. As death approaches, a sick person is placed on a bed of sacred kusa grass on a spot that has been circled by cow dung. A sprig of tulsi plant, a piece of gold, or a few drops of Ganges River water are placed in the mouth to delay messengers of Yama, god of death. A cow is brought to the side of the dying person so that he or she can grasp its tail and be carried safely to the other world. After death, the corpse is washed and prepared for cremation. The body is placed on a funeral pyre, facing north. The eldest son lights the fire, and later cracks open the skull so the soul can leave the body.

8 • RELATIONSHIPS

Rajput greeting practices vary by region.

9 • LIVING CONDITIONS

Rajputs traditionally formed landowning classes. In the past, Rajput rulers of princely states such as Kashmir, Jaipur, and Jodhpur were known for their splendid courts. Rajput Maharajas (kings) often lived luxuriously in ornate palaces. After India's independence, however, the princes lost their titles and privileges.
In Rajput homes, men's quarters consist of a courtyard containing a platform about four to six feet (about one to two meters) high, reached by a series of steps and often shaded by trees. Men often gather on these platforms to chat and perhaps smoke the hukka (a pipe). At one end of the platform is a roofed porch. Men usually sleep behind this porch. Smaller side rooms are used for storage.
Women's quarters are enclosed by walls, with rooms facing an inner courtyard. A fireplace is built against one wall for cooking. Stairs provide access to the roof. The interconnecting roofs of the houses let Rajput women visit each other without being seen by men.

10 • FAMILY LIFE

A distinctive feature of Rajput society is its clans. More than 103 clans have been identified in all. Among the more important ones are the Chauhans, whose former capital was Ajmer; the Gehlots of Mewar; the Rathors of Marwar; and the Kachhwaha of Jaipur.
Rajputs marry outside their clan. They also try to marry their daughters into clans of higher rank than their own, while accepting daughters-in-law from clans of lower rank. The Rajput clans in Rajasthan have the highest standing, so families with sons in Rajasthan often are sought by those with daughters.
Rajput marriages are arranged. Marriages are occasions for great ceremony and feasting. The groom, accompanied by friends and relatives, rides in a barat (procession) to the bride's house. Mounted on a horse, he is dressed in colorful robes, with turban and sword. Sometimes, he rides a decorated elephant. Gifts and money are distributed to those who gather. A piece of cloth is tied to the edge of the bride's sari and groom's coat. The couple walks around a sacred fire while Brahmans (priests and scholars) chant prayers. This is known as agni puja (fire-worship ceremony). Several days of celebration follow.
In 1303, when the fort of Chitor in Rajasthan was about to fall to Muslims, the Rajput Rani and all the women in the fort burned themselves to death to avoid being taken prisoners. Women who practiced this act of sati were revered as saints and stone sati memorials exist in Rajasthan. Despite abundant folklore surrounding this tradition, it was never widely practiced.

11 • CLOTHING

Rajput men wear the dhoti (loincloth consisting of a long piece of white cotton wrapped around the waist and then drawn between the legs and tucked into the waist), often with a cotton tunic. Rajput men may also wear a short jacket, or angarhkha, that fastens on the right side. Rajput men wear turbans that are tied to represent their particular clan. Rajput women wear either thesari (a length of fabric wrapped around the waist, with one end thrown over the right shoulder) or loose, baggy pants with a tunic. The lengha (long, flowing skirt) is also associated with the traditional dress of Rajasthan.

12 • FOOD

Rajputs' dietary patterns vary by region. In drier parts of India, their staple diet consists of various unleavened breads (roti), pulses (legumes), and vegetables. Rice (chawal) and milk products are also important. Rajputs are fond of hunting and enjoy eating venison and game birds such as goose, duck, partridge, and grouse.

13 • EDUCATION

Formal education used to be of little significance among ruling and landowning Rajput clans. Boys were brought up in the traditions of Rajput culture, trained in martial arts and in a code of conduct based on valor and honor. The sons of Rajputs became huntsmen, polo players, horsemen, and swordsmen.
An educational institution of particular note is Mayo College in Ajmer, Rajasthan. The British founded the college in the early 1870s as a school for the sons of princes. Though many Rajputs still attend the school, it has become an exclusive private school for upper class Indian children.

14 • CULTURAL HERITAGE

India's Rajput heritage is vibrant. Rajputs are seen as champions of Hindu dharma (faith). They have left a strong mark on India, particularly in Rajasthan. Members of the Bhat caste keep family records and can trace a Rajput genealogy to a clan's mythical ancestors. Member of the Charan caste record deeds and accomplishments of Rajput rulers. Rajput courts were centers of culture where literature, music, dance, painting, and sculpture flourished with support of the Rajput elite. A specific style of Rajput painting—often focusing on religious themes, portraiture, or miniatures—emerged at Rajput courts in the Himalayas (the Pahari school) and in the western desert (the Rajasthani school). Bardic literature such as Prithviraj Raso recounts deeds of Rajput heroes. Mira Bai, a poet born in the fifteenth century, was a Rajput princess who is known for her contributions to Hindu bhakti (devotional) literature.
Rajputs built irrigation canals, dams, and reservoirs. The beautiful temples at Khajuraho were built in the tenth and eleventh centuries, and some Rajput groups built many well-known temples in Gujarat and western Rajasthan. Many palaces and forts represent a pleasing blend of Hindu and Muslim architectural styles. Among the more notable are forts at Chitor, Gwalior, and Jodhpur, and the Palace of the Winds in Jaipur. Maharaja Jai Singh II of Jaipur constructed astronomical observatories in Jaipur and Delhi in the early eighteenth century.

15 • EMPLOYMENT

Rajputs continue to be landowners and soldiers. Agriculture is the group's primary work today, but many Rajputs serve in the Rajput Rifles or other branches of the armed services. They also pursue careers as police officers.

16 • SPORTS

Rajputs used to hunt tiger, panther, deer, and game birds. Also popular was pig-sticking, the dangerous sport of riding on horseback to hunt wild boar by sticking them with a lance. Polo sharpened riding skills.

17 • RECREATION

Historically Rajputs have taken great pleasure in the elaborate rituals and ceremonies associated with their religion and community. Weddings and other festive occasions are observed with much enthusiasm and are often celebrated with feasting, and sometimes with nautch (dancing) girls.

18 • CRAFTS AND HOBBIES

Rajput folk traditions include string puppet shows and ballads told by traveling storytellers known as bhopas. In one such ballad, Pabuji, a thirteenth-century chieftain, borrows a horse from a woman to ride to his wedding. Before he does so, he promises the woman he will protect her cows. Soon after the wedding ceremony has begun, Pabuji learns that the thieves are making off with the cows. He leaves his wedding to keep his word and recovers all but one calf. He risks another battle for the calf and is killed by the enemy. His bride then leaves her handprint on the gate of Pabuji's residence and commits sati (burns herself to death, a saintly act in Rajasthan).

19 • SOCIAL PROBLEMS

As landowners, Rajputs do not face the social discrimination and problems of poverty that confront many others in India. While some may have fallen on hard times, Rajputs as a community are prosperous. One of the biggest challenges they face is adjusting to India's democratic environment. As former kings and members of the former ruling class, their power and prestige today is of less importance than in the past. Their economic resources have been threatened by government attempts to redistribute wealth. They have faced challenges from castes seeking economic and political independence from Rajput control. Rajputs lack the unity that would give them a powerful voice in modern Indian politics.

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Hammir Dev Chauhan - Prithviraj Chauhan's descendant



Hammir Dev Chauhan

Prithviraj Chauhan's descendant, Hammir Dev Chauhan ruled Ranasthambpur (Ranthambore).


Ranthambore fort of Hada Chauhan dynasty
Jalore was ruled by another branch of Chauhans, the Songaras. Ala ud din Khilji usurped Delhi from his father-in-law, Jalal-ud-din Khilji, by killing him in cold blood. In 1299 Ala ud din's mongol general Ulugh Khan sought to quell Hindu resistance in Gujarat and besieged Junagadh and sacked the temple at Somnath. Ulugh Khan had broken the Shivalinga of Somnath and was carrying it back to Delhi. Kanhad Dev Songara, ruler of Jalore, attacked and defeated Ulugh Khan. His son Biramdeo and Jaitra Deora were the generals who commandeered Kanhad Dev's army. They captured the fragments of the Shivalinga. Kanhad had the Shivalinga washed in Gangajal and had the fragments placed at various Shiva temples around Jalore.

One of Ala ud din's generals was a neo-Muslim, Muhammad Shah, who had helped Kanhad Dev. This general later went and stayed with Hammir Deo in Ranthambore. Ala ud din wanted him dead, and asked Hammir to hand him over. Hammir replied that he knows how to draw his sword, and anyone who has taken shelter in his fort would not be turned over. Hammir did not consider Khilji king of India. Ala ud din attacked Ranthambore in 1299, but his armies consisting of 80,000 cavalry, led by generals Ulugh Khan and Nusrat Khan, were badly defeated. Nusrat Khan was killed by rajputs in this campaign.

Khilji finally came himself in 1301 A.D., and there was a long siege. Hammir was very well prepared. When the fort did not fall after repeated bloody skirmishes Khilji, tired of living in an insect infested swamp for seven months (land outside Ranasthambpur fort is marshy), resorted to diplomacy.


Marshy Battle Field below Ranthambore Fort.

Hammir was very suspicious but he heeded to his councilors who told him that sword is not always the best recourse. Ratipal and Ranmal, who were close confidants of Hammir, were sent to the Khilji camp. Ranmal's father was hung by Hammir for treachery and his property was confiscated. Ranmal earned the trust of Hammir by being brave in battles that Hammir fought but perfidy was in his blood. Khilji bribed these two generals of Hammir's army and consequently Ranthambore fell.

Cenotaph of Hammir Dev Chauhan at Ranthambore Fort.

Every Rajput and Indian takes pride in reciting the couplet extolling the bravery and uprightness of Hammir:
िसंह-सवन सत्पुरुष-वचन कदलन फलत इक बार।
ितिरया-तेल हम्मीर-हठ चढे न दूजी बार॥

(English translation:)
A lioness gives birth to a cub only once; once alone is the word of a good man given; once only does a plantain bear fruit; a woman is anointed only once with oil for marriage; and once alone did Hammira give his irrevocable promise.
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Histroy and Emergence of the Rajputs



History

Definition

(räj´poots)  [Sanskrit,=son of a king], dominant people of Rajputana, an historic region now almost coextensive with the state of Rajasthan, NW India. The Rajputs are mainly Hindus of the warrior caste; traditionally they have put great value on etiquette and the military virtues and take great pride in their ancestry. Of these exogamous clans, the major ones were Rathor, Kachchwaha, Chauhan, and Sisodiya. Their power in Rajputana grew in the 7th cent., but by 1616 all the major clans had submitted to the Mughals. With the decline of Mughal power in the early 18th cent., the Rajputs expanded through most of the plains of central India, but by the early 19th cent. they had been driven back by the Marathas, Sikhs, and British. Under the British, many of the Rajput princes maintained independent states within Rajputana, but they were gradually deprived of power after India attained independence in 1947.

See S. M. Rameshwar, Resurgent Rajasthan (1962); L. Minturn, The Rajputs of Kahlpur (1966); D. Sharma, Lectures on Rajput History and Culture (1970).

History

According to the Hindu Mythology, the Rajputs of Rajasthan were the descendants of the Kshatriyas or warriors of Vedic India. The emergence of the Rajput warrior clans was in the 6th and 7th centuries. Rajputs ancestry can be divided into two: the "solar" or suryavanshi-those descended from Rama, the hero of the epic Ramayana, and the "lunar" or chandravanshi, who claimed descent from Krishana, the hero of the epic Mahabharata. Later a third clan was added, the agnikula or fire-born, said to have emerged from the flames of a sacrificial fire on Mt Abu. It has been accepted that the Rajputs were divided into thirty-six races and twenty-one kingdoms. The Rajput clans gave rise to dynasties like Sisodias of Mewar (Udaipur), the Kachwahas of Amber (Jaipur), the Rathors of Marwar (Jodhpur & Bikaner), the Harsa of Kota & Bundi, the Bhattis of Jaisalmer and the Chauhans of Ajmer.



Early History

Rajasthan is the north-western region of India, and has remain independent from the great empires. Buddhism failed to make substantial inroad here; the Mauryan empire (321-184 BC), whose most renowned emperor, Ashoka, Converted to Buddhism in 261 BC, had minimal impact in Rajasthan, However, there are Buddhist caves and stupas (Buddhist Shrines) at Jhalawar, in Southern Rajasthan.

Ancient Hindu scriptural epics make reference to sites in present-day Rajasthan. The Holy Pilgrimage site of Pushkar is mentioned in both the Mahabharata and Ramayana.

Emergence of the Rajputs


The fall of the Gupta Empire, which held dominance in northern India for nearly 300 years until the early 5th Century, was followed by a period of instability as various local chieftains sought to gain supremacy. Power rose and fell in northern India. Stability was only restored with the emergence of the Gurjara Partiharas, the earliest of the Rajput (from 'Rajputra', or Sons of Princes) dynasties which were later to hold the balance of power throughout Rajasthan.

Whatever their actual origins, the Rajputs have evolved a complexmythological genealogy. This ancestry can be divided into two main branches: the Suryavansa, or Race of the Sun (Solar Race), which claims direct  descent from Rama; and the Induvansa, or Race of the Moon (Lunar race), which claims descent from Krishna, Later a third branch was added, the Agnikula, or 'Fire Born'. These people claim they were manifested from the flames of a sacrificial fire on Mt.Abu From these three Principal races emerged the 36 Rajput clans.

The Rajput clans gave rise to dynasties such as the Chauhans, Sisodias, Kachhwahas and Rathores. Chauhans of the Agnikula Race emerged in the 12th century and were renowned for their valour. Their territories included the Sapadalksha kingdom, which encompassed a vast area including present- day Jaipur, Ranthambhore, part of Mewar, the western portion of Bundi district, Ajmer Kishangarh and even, at one time, Delhi. Branches of the Chauhans also ruled territories know as Ananta (in present-day Shekhawati) and Saptasatabhumi.

The Sisodias of the Suryavansa Race, Originally from Gujarat, migrated to Rajasthan in the mid-7th Century and reigned over Mewar, which encompassed Udaipur and Chittorgarh.

The Kachhwahas, originally from Gwalior in Madhya Pradesh, travelled west in the 12th century. They built the massive fort at Amber, and later shifted the capital to Jaipur. Like the Sisodias, they belonged to the Suryavansa Race.

Also belonging to the Suryavansa Race, the Rathore (earlier known as Rastrakutas) traveled from Kanauj, in Uttar Pradesh. Initially they settled in Pali, south of present-day Jodhpur, but later moved to Mandore in 1381 and ruled over Marwar (Jodhpur). Later they started building the stunning Meherangarh (fort) at Jodhpur.

The Bhattis, who belong to the Induvansa Race, driven from their homeland in the Punjab by the Turks, installed themselves at Jaisalmer in 1156. They remained more of less entrenched in their desert Kingdom untill they were integrated into the state of Rajasthan following Independence.
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New Rajput song Punjabi (lalru)


War is my passion 
warrior is my occupation
victory is my destination
weapon's are my education
king is my degree
sword is my power
enemy's blood is my desire
i am the RAJPUTANA fire
Rajputs are Born to Fight and Rule
rajput born to rule and woning the wars
some People try to become intelligent and 
smart but some are born RAJPUT
that its an amazing song bringing up the rajput pride! 
These kinds of songs about Rajputs are bringing Rajput era back and promoting rajput unity. I wish we the RAJPUTS get united and bring our rich culture back. Rajputs are the most brave people in this universe.

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Armour of Rajput Warrior


Date: Late 18th century
Place: India
Materials and Techniques: Steel, gold, wood, brass, leather and textile
Dimensions: Height 102.8 cm
Museum Number: The Wallace Collection, A1828



Fabric is a very early form of armour. The problem in designing armour is to create something that protects and yet allows the user to move about and fight. Fabric works very well for this and is cheap. Armour was often reinforced at the most vulnerable areas with plates made of steel. The coat is called Chilta Hazar Masha. 'Coat of a thousand nails', made up of layers of fabric faced with velvet and studded with numerous small brass nails, which were often gilded. The padded coat, minus its nails, is known for short as a chilta and was worn over armour or on its own. Fabric armour was very popular in India because metal became very hot under the Indian sun.


 These coats were very expensive. The steel helmet, arm guard or bazuband and baldric were added later (fabric hats were also made) and could be varied according to the wishes of the owner.


This armour is from Rajasthan, which means 'land of kings.' The Rajput were brave warriors whose joy in life was fighting. In order to achieve warrior heaven they wanted to die gloriously in battle - to die in bed was a huge disgrace. For this reason the Rajputs would ride to battle but then get off their horses to fight, so that if they were wounded the horse could not carry them home by accident. The story is told of one Maharaja who fought against great odds and at the end of the day, wounded and exhausted, cut his way off the battle field and rode with his surviving men for his castle. When he hammered on the door to be admitted, his wife from the battlements 'asked if he was victorious?'. When he replied 'no' she said that he must be an impostor because her husband would either be victorious or dead! The Maharaja turned round and rode back towards his enemies and death. Of course his wife too would die as a result of her action because she would ritually burn herself to death on his funeral pyre so as to accompany her husband to the next world and preserve her honour and his

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History of Rajputs


During the 7th and 8th century emerged a new clan of people who came to be known as Rajputs. They basically belonged to the warrior class of people and were located in Rajasthan and some central parts of India. However there is conflict regarding the rise of the Rajputs and there are many theories that put forward different incidents that led to the rise of the Rajput empire. The royal Rajputs of Rajasthan ruled successfully over Rajasthan and Gujarat for a period of 500 years. Read further about the history of Rajasthan Rajputs. 



Being essentially in the warrior class, the Rajputs had huge armies of soldiers. There were bodyguards and watchmen who were very loyal to their masters. In fact, the Rajputs were known for their loyalty and trustworthy nature. The Rajputs were skillful warriors and followed a strict code of conduct when it came to waging a battle and driving away an enemy. There are many tales and folklores about the bravery of the Rajputs. The Rajputs were God fearing people and were devoted to Vishnu, Rama and Sun God. 

A very famous Rajput ruler was Prithviraj Chauhan who waged a fierce battle against Muhammad Ghauri around the 12th century. When the Mughals invaded some Rajput rulers converted to Islam, which then laid the foundation of one of the biggest pre-colonial empire in South East Asia. The Rajputs were known for their unique architectural wonders and built many palaces and forts in and around Rajasthan and Gujarat. The forts and temples they built then still stand strong and provide a glimpse of the royal heritage of the Rajputs. 

With time the power of the Rajputs began to decline mainly due to the fact that they were unable to move with time. The Mughals invaded and captured huge parts of Rajasthan and Gujarat. After the efforts of Babur, emperor Humayun and Akbar virtually conquered almost all parts of the Rajput Empire. This happened by not just wars but also through matrimonial alliances of the Mughals and the Rajputs. With the arrival of the British, all Rajput states became colonies of the British thus ending the regal reign of the Rajputs.