Rashtrakuta, Pala, Gurjara-Pratihara state formation, c. 750–950


Map Code: Ax00935

After the collapse of the Harsha-Vardhana dynasty in c. 750, the Gurjara-Pratihara, Rashtrakuta and Pala dynasties vied for domination of the Gangas (Ganges) valley and the sacred city of Kanauj. India rapidly decentralized, forming into regional kingdoms, with feudal structures. The north, briefly a lawless and leaderless area, became unified under Gopala, a devout Buddhist. Gopala took Kanauj and ruled northeastern India around the Bay of Bengal. Gopla’s son and grandson extended the boundaries of the kingdom to include modern day Nepal. The Gurjara-Pratiharas originated from the western Gangas region of central India and not only warred with the Palas, but also the Rashtrakutas, which confined their territorial acquisitions to northwestern India. The Rashtrakutas took possession of central southern India and the western Gangas. All three dynasties were patrons of the arts and built temples and monasteries.

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