Author: Madan Mohan Upadhyay
Publisher: B R Publishing
ISBN/UPC (if available): 8176464961
Ancient inscriptions have constantly contributed significant and decisive new chapters to history, such as the discovery of the Kalachuri dynasty or connecting some vital missing link in history. As more material comes to notice and the use of modern techniques, we are getting wiser about our past. Whatever the reasons, the deciphered and the undeciphered scripts, such as the shell script (Shankhalipi), have long tantalized the public. Some aspects of history and civilization that got lost in the run of development are seen only through the ancient and not so ancient inscriptions. These writings, frozen in time and space, are the only authentic remains of those times.
This book is a consolidation of the known and the unknown epigraphs in Mahakoshal, a large geographical part in Central India. Beginning with the Rupnath edict it traverses its path through the terrain of Vindhyas on the north to the Satpuras in south and touches on to some inscriptions of the Chattisgarh area.
The information explosion and the use of modern photographic and analytical tools have given us insight into the process of evolution of the scripts particularly the Nagari script. The book provides rich material on Nagari as it was written in the Mahakoshal area.
The book has covered 165 place but the epigraphs are much more. Seen and described with relevant detail, this book is an authentic update on epigraphs. The colour photos and the contrast has done wonder to these inscriptions. The book would serve as a reference material for archaeologist, tourists, students of history and the layman. The issues raised by the author about the status of these inscriptions remain relevant for similar ones in other parts of the country.
Madan Mohan Upadhyay has made an admirable effort to collect a wide range of historical epigraphs from Mahakosala, the result being a fascinating corpus of invaluable records. He has given a careful account of each inscription along with illustrations as appropriate. In addition to locating records not previous published, the author has take pains to have inscriptions cleaned and photographed. He has also documented the present location of each record and in several cases has taken steps for their preservation. This is especially laudable because historians are frequently content to cite old publications without recourse to the original inscriptions.
-Dr Michael Willis
British Museum, London