(Last Updated on : 29/01/2009)
Divided into four main classes the social condition during the Satavahanas was then rather contemporary.
The whole society was divided into four main classes, as for example 'maharathis', 'mahabhojas' and 'mahasenapatis' belonged to the first class and that was the highest class in the society. The 'Samantas' also belonged to this class. 'Mahabhojas' belonged to north konkar whereas 'maharastis' belonged to the contrary above the western ghats.
The second class comprised of the officials as well as non officials. Amathas, mahamatias and chandrikas were the officials which formed this class. Among the non officials were the naigama or merchant, the sarthvaha or the head of a carvan of traders and the stresthin i.e. head of trade guide, lekhaka or scribe, vaidya or physician, halakiya or cultivator, suvarnkara or goldsmith and gandhika or druggist etc. formed the third class. Lastly the fourth class was comprised of the vardnika or carpenter, malakara or the Gardner, lohavanija or blacksmith and dasaka or fisherman.
Condition of women
: The condition of women was good during the reign of Satavahanas. Their status was pretty high in the society. In times of emergency they took upon themselves the task of looking after the administration of the kingdom as well. Several names of the sons, such as Gautamputra Satkarni, Vasisthiputra Satkarni etc., which were after the name of their mothers, indicate the high and respectable position of women in the society. Probably women were imparted education from the beginning. Besides administrative works, women also participated in religious activities. Naganika performed two Asvamedha yajna along with husband. Widows were not subjected to sufferings and were respected as mothers. No such example is found which may indicate that there was purdah system among the women.