(Last Updated on : 08/07/2011)
The Maitraka dynasty chiefly ruled in Gujarat
from c. 475 to 767. The Maitrakas ruled from their capital at Vallabhi
. They were ruled by Harshavardhana
in the mid-7th century, but retained local autonomy. The Maitraka dynasty however regained their independence after the death of Harsha. The name Maitraka is said to have been derived from Mithra, the Sun or Sun deity.
The Maitraka Dynasty was established by Senapati (general) Bhatarka. He was a military governor of Saurashtra peninsula under the Gupta Empire. In the fifth century he became an independent ruler of Gujarat. Bhatarka and Dharasena I were the first two rulers of the Maitraka Dynasty who employed the title of Senapati (general). The third ruler Dronasimha used the term Maharaja to denote himself. After these rulers the dynasty was ruled by Dharasena II, who used the title of Mahadhiraja. His son, the next ruler Siladitya I, Dharmaditya was denoted as a `monarch of great administrative ability and of rare kindness and compassion` by Hiuen Tsang. Siladitya I was succeeded by his younger brother Kharagraha I.
Dharasena III, the next king of the Maitraka dynasty included north Gujarat in his kingdom. Dharasena II was later succeeded by another son of Kharagraha I, Dhruvasena II, Baladitya. He had married the daughter of Harshavardhana. His son Dharasena IV used the title of Paramabhattaraka Mahrajadhiraja Parameshvara Chakravartin. Siladitya III was the next king who ascended the throne. During the reign of Siladitya V, the Arabs annexed the kingdom. The last known ruler of this dynasty was Siladitya VII. Maitraka rule thus ended with the sacking of Vallabhi
by the barbarians in 524.
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