(Last Updated on : 15/11/2011)
Arjunayanas was an autonomous political community who stayed in the borders of the Gupta Empire
and accepted the supremacy of Samudragupta
. They have also been mentioned in Brihat samhita of Varahamihira
. Origin of Arjunayanas is mysterious. It is believed that after suffering serious defeat at the hands of Macedonians they had moved to Punjab
and beyond to avoid further persecution by Alexander.
Coins of Arjunayana indicate that their territory was within the triangle formed by Delhi
. The coins resemble that of the Yaudheya coins. There are several varieties of coins. In one type, the facade shows a bull and a standing goddess on the reverse of the coin. On another coin, bull is standing before a tree in railing on the face and another bull facing a linga symbol and also carrying a legend Arjunayanajaya on the reverse of it. The third type has a bull in the front and a swastika with taurine symbol at the end of arms and a branch and the legend Janayana on the reverse of it. The coins reveal that they were worshippers of Lord Shiva
The coins of 2nd century reveal that the Arjunayanas and Yaudheyas were neighbourly tribes and had fought against the foreign invaders like the Yavanas, Sakas, Pahlavas and Kushanas together. The Arjunayanas however have not been mentioned in Ramayana
or any Vedic texts.
The territory of the Arjunayanas was situated on the borders of the Gupta Empire. They have also been recorded in the Allahabad Pillar inscription of Samudragupta . They are also mentioned along with Malavas, Yaudheyas, Madrakas, Abhiras, Prarjunas, Sanakanikas, Kakas, Kharaparikas and other tribes. It is believed that they were vanquished by Samudragupta around 335 AD and amalgamated into the Gupta Empire.
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