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History of Junagadh



Maryann dynasty

An impressive fort, Uperkot, located on a plateau in the middle of town, was originally built during the Maryann dynasty by Chandragupta in 319 BCE The fort remained in use until the 6th century, when it was covered over for 300 years, then rediscovered in 976 CE The fort was besieged 16 times over an 800-year period. One unsuccessful siege lasted twelve years.

An inscription with fourteen Edicts of Ashoka is found on a large boulder within 2 km of Uperkot Fort. The inscriptions carry Brahmi script in a language similar to Pali and date back to 250 BCE On the same rock are inscriptions in Sanskrit added around 150 CE by Mahakshatrap Rudradaman I, the Saka (Scythian) ruler of Malwa, a member of the Western Kshatrapasdynasty. Another inscription dates from about 450 CE and refers to Skandagupta, the last Gupta emperor. Old rock-cutBuddhist "caves" in this area, dating from well before 500 CE, have stone carvings and floral work. There are also the Khapra Kodia Caves north of the fort, and the Babupyana Caves south of the fort.

The Maitraka dynasty ruled Gujarat in western India from 475 to 767 CE The founder of the dynasty, general Bhatarka, a military governor of Saurashtra peninsula under the Gupta empire, established himself as the independent ruler of Gujarat approximately in the last quarter of the 5th century. However, James Tod states Maitraka rule ended as early as 524 CE.

Solanki dynasty

The Solanki, of the Chalukya dynasty, ruled Gujarat in the 11th and 12th centuries. The two large step wells (vavs) of Uperkot Fort were both commissioned by Rah Navghan I (1025-1044 CE)Muslims conquered Gujarat in 1299 and the Sultanate of Gujarat was formed in 1407. Mahmud Begada (Mahmud Shah I) invaded Junagadh in 1467. The city was annexed to the Gujarat Sultanate; the city foundation
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