Kumbha of Mewar: Rana Kumbha The Great Warrior
Kumbhakaran, popularly known as Rana Kumbha, was the ruler of Mewar in western India. He was the great King of Mewar who not only protected his state from foreign invaders but also expand it during his reign.
Rana Kumbha also had a great eye for architecture. During his reign there were approximately 37 palaces, towers, etc. were built.
He was also a great swordsman and like every other Rajput King, he even a well-versed horse rider. He was a devotee of the Hindu religion and built many temples and scriptures depicting Mahabharata and Ramayana scenes.
He was reign on Mewar from 1433 to 1468, during his reign Mewar touch the heights of prosperity and empowerment. Historians also called this era ‘The Golden Period of Mewar’
About Rana Kumbha
Rana Kumbha was the son of Rana Mokal of Mewar by his wife, Sobhagya Devi. He was a tall, well-figured man with high power. Rana Kumbha get the throne of Mewar after his father Rana Mokal was assassinated by two brothers Chacha and Meera, after killing Rana Mokal they fled to neighboring states, and that’s how Rana Kumbha get the throne of Mewar. Initially, he was accommodated by Ranamalla, the Rathore of Mandore.
When Ranamalla’s power began to rise in the court, Rana Kumbha had assassinated him, and thus the enmity between Rathore’s and Rajput’s start, which would last for decades.
Rana Kumbha was a great architect, and he built many forts and towers during his reign. He was always remembered as a fierce king, a great architect of Hindu sculpture, and a loyal Hindu king.
Rana Kumbha belongs to the Sisodiya clan of Rajputs. His father’s name was Rana Mokal, and his mother’s name was Sobhagya Devi.
Mokal Singh was the son of Kshetra Singh and was a vast architecture of his time. While Sobhagya Devi the mother of Rana Kumbha was the daughter of Jaitmal Sankhla, who belongs to the Paramara dynasty that rules over Malwa during that time and till the 14 century.
Rana Kumbha being from a Rajput family was very courageous, bravery runs into the veins of Rana Kumbha. He was successful in contaminating foreign invaders and expanding his kingdom.
Udai Singh and Rana Raimal were the sons of Rana Kumbha. Rana Kumbha was the great grandfather of the famous King of Mewar Rana Sanga.
The early period of his reign was sabotage by Muslim invaders, and he had to face attacks from everywhere around his state. However, he came as victorious and maintained peace and harmony within his state during his reign.
He was one of the leading opposers of Delhi Sultanat and fought Muslim invaders throughout his life. The bravery and commanding capability of Rana Kumbha were great, and he was successful in defending his territory till his last breath.
He was killed in 1468 by his son Udai Singh I, Udai Singh later murdered in 1472, and some historians claim that he was struck by lightning.
Rana Kumbha, during his reign, built some famous structures. Some of them are still famous for their archaeological importance, and some are glorified in his victories. Out of 32 structures, he built the famous were-
- Fort of Kumbhalgarh- The chief citadel of Mewar, built by Rana Kumbha, the height of this fort is 1075 meters, which is the highest in Rajasthan, and its walls were extending over 38 km.
- Vijay Stambha- Vijay Stambha (Tower of Victory) was erected by Rana Kumbha to honour his victory against the combined armies of Malwa and Gujarat led by Mahmud Khalji. The tower is 37 meters in height, and the images of Hindu Gods and Goddesses scribble on the tower.
- The RanakpurTrailokya-Dipika Jain Temple
- The Kumbhasvami Temple
- Adivarsha Temple
These are some of his famous structures, among others. Of the total of 84 fortresses that form the defense of Mewar, 32 were constructed by Rana Kumbha. The wall he built in Kumbhalgarh Fort is the second-longest wall in the world after The Great Wall of China.
Besides excellent architecture, he was also a great admirer of art and music and worked continuously on preserving Indian art and classical music; he devoted himself to conserving the art of India. He was a great poet, scholar, and musician and composed some musical works.
Now the courage of his power and mettle as a king and warrior, when the ruler of Nagaur Firoz Khan died in 1453, his son Shams Khan sought the help of Rana Kumbha in becoming King of Nagaur, Rana helped him to become King and after that Shams refused to loosen the defenses, feeling betrayed Rana Kumbha attacked Nagaur in 1556 and captured it.
After this, there were many wars of capturing and defending between Rana Kumbha and Muslim rulers fought, and during this time, the courage and mettle of Rana Sanga were tested. He not only occurred as victorious but also defends and expands his territory.
During this time he was surrounded by enemies like Mahmud Khalji of Malwa, Qutbuddin Ahmad Shah II of Gujarat Saltanat, Shams Khan of Nagaur, and Rao Jodha of Marwar.
During his reign, Rana Kumbha fought many battles and won most of them. Throughout his life, he fought the battles some of them are
- Battle of Mandalgarh- To stop Mahmud Khalji of Mewar as he proceeds to capture Chittor Rana Kumbha intercept in Mandalgarh and defeated Mahmud Khalji the battle.
- Battle of Banas- BanasRiver where Mahmud Khalji planned to attack Mewar again and get defeated on the banks of Banas River by Rana Kumbha in 1446.
- In 1456 Ahmad Shah and Mahmud Khalji agreed on a treaty (Treaty of Champaner) to attack Mewar, however, after early success Rana Kumbha severely defeated them. This win famed Rana Kumbha as a fierce King who not only defends his territory but also crushes the enemies who try to capture his kingdom.
There were many more battles fought and won by Rana Kumbha throughout his life.
- His greatest achievements were he protected his kingdom from foreign invaders at a time when every other Hindu King lost their territories to foreign invaders. Not only defend he also expand his territory, and during his reign, Mewar touches the pinnacle of prosperity.
- His other achievements are the structures he built in Rajasthan which are still erect on earth, proving his might and love of architecture.
- Last but not the least his love of art and music. He encourages Indian classical musicians, and he devotes to the music. He was a poet and scholar as well.