MYSORE

The Wodeyar Dynasty

BRIEF HISTORY

The family originated from Dwarka in Kathiawar. Two brothers, Vijayaraj and Krishnaraja, settled in the Ashtagram district of Mysore during the 14th century. One of these brothers married the daughter of the polegar of Hadanaru, and thereafter established his rule in the area. Initially vassals of the Hindu Vijayanagar Empire, the founders of the Wodeyar dynasty, the two brothers Vijaya and Krishna settled themselves in two fortresses of the Hadana region. In the 16th century, Hiriya Bettada Chamaraja III gave the fortress of Puragarh to one of his three sons, Appana Timmaraja II who named the place Mahishasura. The name was transformed to Mysore (Maisur) and the kingdom became independent of in Vijayanagar 1564. The Wodeyars considerably increased their territories over the next two centuries. However, in 1755 the minor Maharaja fell under the control of the infamous Hyder 'Ali. The later was merely the Chief Minister and unofficial regent, but usurped power to such an extent that he became the de-facto ruler of the state. Two successive Maharajas were dispatched under suspicious circumstances jest before reaching their age of majority, when they would ordinarily have assumed full ruling powers. The Royal family being kept virtual prisoners, displayed to the public merely at the annual Dessara festival. Hyder's son and successor to his offices, Tipu Sultan, soon tired of even this charade and assumed full sovereign powers. He took the title of Padshah, even substituting his own name in place of the Mughal Emperor at Friday prayers. Close relations with the French proved his undoing; he was famously defeated at Seringapatam by British arms in 1799. The traditional dynasty was restored in the person of Mummadi Krishnaraja Wodeyar III, the five year old son of the last reigning Maharaja of the Wodeyars. He reigned under the Regency of the Dewan until he came of age and received full ruling powers in 1810. He was removed from administrative control of the state in 1831, British officials conducting governmental affairs in his name. After a period of fifty years administrative control was finally transferred back to the rule of the Wodeyar Dynasty in 1881, becoming the premier Hindu princely state in the Empire. During the next seventy years, Mysore was considered a model state. Maharaja Sri Sir Jaya Chamarajendra signed the instrument of accession to the Dominion of India on 9th August with effect from 15h August 1947. His reputation was so high that he served for a further twenty years as Rajpramukh and Governor of Mysore and later Madras. His son and successor continues to play a prominent part in both State and Union politics. He also continues to preside over the annual Dessara festival at Mysore City.
 

SALUTE:
21-guns.

ARMS:
Marri a garuda displayed argent billed and armed or. Crest: lion passant carrying an antelope's head all proper. Supporters: Satras (yali) trapped, armed and unguled or. Motto: Satyamevuddha ramyahan (I verily maintain the truth). Lambrequins: marri and argent.

STYLES & TITLES:
The ruling prince: Maharaja Sri (personal name) Wodeyar Bahadur, Maharaja of Mysore, with the style of His Highness.
The consort of the ruling prince: Soubhagyavati Maharani Sri (personal name) Ammani Avaru, Maharani of Mysore, with the style of Her Highness.
The Heir Apparent: Yuvaraja Sri (personal name) Wodeyar Bahadur, with the style of His Highness.
The consort of the Heir Apparent: Soubhagyavati Yuvarani Sri (personal name) Ammani Avaru, with the style of Her Highness.
The younger sons of the ruling prince: Maharajkumar Sri (personal name) Wodeyar Bahadur.
The daughters of the ruling prince: Maharajkumari Sri (personal name) Ammani Avaru.
The daughters of the Heir Apparent: Yuvarajkumari Sri (personal name) Ammani Avaru.
The grandsons of the ruling prince: Rajkumar Sri (personal name) (family name).
The granddaughters of the ruling prince: Rajkumari Sri (personal name) Ammani Avaru.

ORDERS & DECORATIONS:
The Gandabherunda Badge (Gandabherunda Padak): founded by Maharaja Sri Sir Chamarajendra Wodeyar X in 1892 in three classes. Reformed and extended by Maharaja Sri Sir Jaya Chamarajendra Wodeyar in 1941 and 1942 and thereafter awarded in a superior class (with the titles of Pradhana Shiromani and Amatya Shirimani) and four classes, each divided into two grades. Recipients of the four ordinary classes were granted honorary titles (Rajasabhabhushana, Rajadharmapravina, Rajakaryaprasakta, Rajadharmaprasakta, Dharmarattanakara, Dharmapravaratta, or Panditaratnam). Obsolete 26th January 1950.
The Mysore Distinguished Service Order: founded by Maharaja Sri Sir Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV in 1913 as a reward for distinguished and meritorious military service. Awarded in four classes. Obsolete 26th January 1950.
 

The Mysore Public Service Medal - obverse.

The Mysore Public Service Medal: instituted by Maharaja Sri Sir Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV in 1913 as a reward for generous acts of public service, welfare and philanthropy exceeding Rs 10,000. Awarded in a single class, a gold medal closely modelled on the Kaiser-i-Hind Medal. Obsolete 26th January 1950.
The Maharaja's Police Medal: instituted by Maharaja Sri Sir Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV on 21st August 1919 to reward exceptional acts of courage and conspicuous devotion to duty on the part of officers of the state police forces. Awarded in a single class, a silver medal. Obsolete 26th January 1950.
Mysore Certificate of Merit: instituted by Maharaja Sri Sir Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV as a reward for long and meritorious service by state servants and officials, but whose status or service did not warrant the award of the Gandabherunda badge. Obsolete 26th January 1950.

SELECT GLOSSARY:
Apratima Vira: Hero without equal.

Apratima-vira
: unparalleled hero.
Asta-Mahishiyaru: junior Queen.

Birud-antembara-ganda
: Master of Titleholders.
Chatussamudra-paryanta-bhumandaladhisvara: Lord of the world as far as the ocean seas.
Dalavai: literally 'mouth of the army', i.e. the Commander-in-Chief. Later a hereditary title used by the Urs family, former vassal rulers of Kalale.
Hindu Raya Suratrana: Sultan of Hindu Kings.
Kathariya-salva: a daggered hawk to his enemies.

Kote-kolahala
: occupier of forts amidst great uproar.
Mahishi Prathama
: principal Queen.
Muru Manneya Ganda
: Champion over three chiefs.
Parabala-meghanila: gale to the clouds in the form of armies of hostile kings
Ripuraya-nikara-sarabha-bherunda: double-headed eagle to the assemblage of enemy kings.
Pararaya Bhayankara: Terror to Hostile Kings.
Raja Jagadev: Ruler of the World.
Samastorvisa-makuta-manigana-ranjita-pada-padma: with the assemblage of precious stones from the crowns of various chiefs, shining at his feet.
Sanagara-vijaya-vadhutisa: lord of the goddess of victory on the field of battle.
Sardar: title used for certain hereditary nobles.
Sarvadhikarai: Chief Minister.
Tirumala-Nayaka-chaturangabala-vallari-lavitra: sickle to the bunch, the four fold army of Tirumala Nayaka.
Vairi-gaja-ganda-bherunda: a double headed eagle to the elephants of hostile kings.
Karnataka-Charawara: Emperor of Karnatika
Andhra-bala-sangha-karikula: herd of elephants to the Andhra chiefs.
Aryandhra-nripa-garva-parvata-kulisayudha: thunderbolt to the mountain, the proud Andhra kings.

SOURCES:
Chiefs and Leading Families in the Madras Presidency, First Edition, Madras Govt. Press, 1915. IOR/V/27/70/29. India Office Records, British Library, St Pancras, London.
Chiefs and Leading Families in the Madras Presidency, Second Edition, Madras Govt. Press, 1923. IOR/V/27/70/30. India Office Records, British Library, St Pancras, London.
Sir Murray Hammick, KCSI, CIE (ed.). Historical Sketches of the South of India, etc. by Lieut. Colonel Mark Wilks. 2 volumes. Government Branch Press, Mysore, 1932.
C. Hayavadana Rao. History of Mysore (1399-1799 AD). 3 volumes. Mysore Government Press, Bangalore, 1943.
History of Ruling Princes, Chiefs and Leading Personages in the Madras States (corrected up to 1 September 1940) [with correction slips]. Delhi, 1941. IOR/V/27/70/32. India Office Records, British Library, St Pancras, London.Sir Murray Hammick, KCSI, CIE (ed.). Historical Sketches of the South of India, etc. by Lieut. Colonel Mark Wilks. 2 volumes. Government Branch Press, Mysore, 1932.
C. Hayavadana Rao. History of Mysore (1399-1799 AD). 3 volumes. Mysore Government Press, Bangalore, 1943.
G.R. Joyser. History of Mysore and the Yadava Dynasty. Coronation Press, Mysore, 1950.
Tony McClenaghan. Indian Princely Medals, A Record of the Orders, Decorations and Medals of the Indian Princely States. Lancer Publications, Spantech & Lancer, New Delhi, 1996.
Colonel W. Miles (transl.). The History of Hyder Naik, or the Neshani Hyduri, written by Mir Hussein Ali Khan Kirmani. Oriental Translation Fund of Great Britain and Ireland, London, 1842.
Colonel W. Miles (transl.). The History of the reign of Tipu Sultan, being a continuation of the Neshani Hyduri, written by Mir Hussein Ali Khan Kirmani. Oriental Translation Fund of Great Britain and Ireland, London, 1844.
Lewis Rice. Mysore and Coorg, A Gazetteer compiled for the Government of India. 4 volumes. Mysore Government Press, Bangalore, 1878.
A. Satyanarayana. History of the Wodeyars of Mysore (1610-1748). Directorate of Archaeology and Museums, Government of Karnataka, Mysore, 1996.
A.N. Niranjana Raja Urs. “A Copper Plate Inscription on Mysore Dynasty Dated 1860 A.D.” The Quarterly Journal of the Mythic Society, Vol. XXCIII, Jan to March, 2002, No. 1, pp 20-50. The Mythic Society, Nripatunga Road, Bangalore 560 001, India.
Niranjana Raja Urs. “Santana Kamala Kalpa: A Painted Photo Depicting the Genealogy of Mysore Wodeyars”, The Quarterly Journal of the Mythic Society, Vol. XCI, Jan to June, 2001, Nos. 1-2, pp 180-206. The Mythic Society, Nripatunga Road, Bangalore 560 001, India.
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