Why Mysore is named as Mysore: The word Mysore is a contorted form of the word “Mysooru“, it is derived from word “Mahishur” or “Mahishasurana Ooru” which means “The town of Mahishasura” in Kannada. It is the local language of State Karnataka, India. The city has been associated with the Puranic story “Devi Bhagvatha“. According to the story in Devi Puran, this city was ruled by Demon king Mahishasura. Mahishasura was a buffalo-headed demon king. It is said that the demon king was very cruel. So God and Goddess did pray so in the response to their pray Goddess Parvati took birth as Chamundeshwari and killed the Monster on the top of Chamundi Hills near Mysore. Thus the city and the hills have names Mysore and Chamundi Hill respectively. It is believed that after killing the monster Goddess stayed on the top of the Hills, where people worship her with great devotion of this days. After that the famous 10 dayslong Dussehra is celebrated and it is the symbol of victory of Good over Evil.

History Of Mysore: Before the rise of the Gangas dynasty in the 10th century there is little historical evidence relating to Mysore. The Gangas established their paramountcy in the 2nd century and they ruled over a large part of the city till about 1004 AD. They established their capital at Talakad in the 3rd century, on the banks of the river Cauvery.

The oldest engraving found in Mysore is by Gangas on Chamundi Hills that was done in 950AD. There is also an engraving by Hoysalas in the city that dates back to the 11th and 12th century. After Gangas, Cholas dynasty ruled Mysore for over a century and after Cholas Chalukyas ruled the Mysore. The Hoysalas drove the Cholas from the remaining part of Mysore region in the 12th century. Hoysala dynasty is known for built beautiful temples during their reign.

After the Hoysalas, Yadu dynasty came to power in 1399A.D. This dynasty also contributed to temple building. Bettada Chamaraja Wodeyar, rebuilt the fort of Mysore and made his headquarters and called the city ‘Mahishura Nagara’ meaning the city of Mahishur. Many inscriptions done in the 17th century and later refer to Mysore as ‘Mahishuru’. Raja Wodeyar moved the capital from Mysore to Srirangapatna. After the death of Tippu Sultan in 1799, Mysore became the capital of the Wodeyars once again.

Wodeyars dynasty and the curse: When we trace the origin of Wodeyar dynasty, we find that the Wodeyar dynasty is traced to Yadavas of Dwaraka in Gujarat (now). Where two royal brothers, Vijaya and Krishna of the Yadu dynasty hailing from Dwaraka came to the region ( Mysore ) after visiting Melkote on their pilgrimage. The two royal princes stayed for the night at Kodi Bhyraveshwara temple which was close to Doddakere (Big pond) from where people of the then small city of Mysore fetched water for drinking and the daily chore. At the night, they heard some women washing clothes and discussing the distress situation of the young Princess, Devajammanni. After the death of her father king Chamaraja, the local ruler, had landed her and her mother, and the queen was in trouble.The neighboring Chief of Karugahalli, Maranayaka was trying to take the advantage of the situation and began demanding the kingdom and the princess in marriage.

wax statue of krishnaraja wadeyar
krishnaraja wodeyar

The two chivalrous brothers came to the rescue of the distressed Maharani and the Princess. They killed the Karugahalli Chief and saved the Mysore royal family and their kingdom. A happy princess married the elder brother, and he became the first ruler of the Yadu dynasty. He assumed the name of Yaduraya. Thus the dynasty of Wodeyars was established in the year 1399. The Yadavas ruled the kingdom for hundreds of years. The kingdom remained fairly small during the early period and was part of the Vijayanagar Empire. The Mysore chieftains owed allegiance to Vijayanagar Kings.

symbol of wodeyer dynasty
Symbol of Wodeyer dynasty and of karnataka tourism

The Curse: king Wodeyar harassed Tirumalaraja and his wife Alamelamma for the jewels that were used to decorate the famous Adi-Ranga temple in the island fortress of Srirangapatna. The jewels were in the custody of Tirumalaraya and Alamelamma. It is believed that when the jewels were being taken over under the orders of Raja Wodeyar, Alamelamma was upset at the unceremonious ouster of her husband, she ran to the cliff overlooking Kaveri river and cursed the Wodeyar dynasty before jumping to death. Since then Wodeyar royals never had any children for alternate generations.

During the reign of Krishnaraja Wodeyar III and with the end of the famous Anglo-Mysore war and the death of Tipu Sultan, the region came under the control of the British Empire. The Wodeyar royals remained as Kings of Mysore, under the British, from the year 1799 to 1947. For over many centuries, the Mysore Royal family has been reeling under the curse. While the last Wodeyar, Jayachamaraja, was adopted, his son, Srikantadatta and his wife Pramada Devi were childless. After the death of Srikantadatta on Dec 10, 2013, the royals adopted 22-year-old Yaduveer Gopal Raj Urs, a distant nephew, as the new heir. He ascended the throne on May 28, 2015, and adopted the name of Yaduveer Krishnadatta Chamaraja Wodeyar.

 

History of Mysore Sandal soap

Hundreds of year ago in May 1916, Krishna Raja Wodiyar IV and Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya, set up the Government Sandalwood Oil factory at Mysore for sandalwood oil extraction. At that time they have never thought of sandal soap. Since the city was the largest producer of sandalwood at time of World War I, to utilize the excess stock that piled up during the war they opened a factory to manufacture fragrant oil. After two years someone gifted Maharaja a rare set of sandalwood oil soaps. This gave him the idea of producing sandal soap for the masses and sandal soap comes into existence. Usually, soap was rectangular at that time but sandal soap was given a unique design, an oval shape soap and there was also a change in packaging style.

For more information read:- Better India

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One thought on “Mysore Rich and Fascinating History”

  1. An attention-grabbing dialogue is value comment. I feel that you need to write more on this subject, it may not be a taboo subject however usually individuals are not enough to talk on such topics. To the next. Cheers

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