Syria (grandson of Seleucus Nikator), Ptolemy II Philadelpus of Egypt,
Antigonus Gonatus of Macedonia, Magas of Cyrene and Alexander of
    Some members of Asoka’s immediate family are mentioned in the
various sources. Definite indications as to the identity of Asoka’s mother are
given in some of the Buddhist sources like Vamsathapakasini, Divyavadana
and Asokavadana. The last source in particular mentions her as Subhadrangi
and describes her as the daughter of a Brahmin of Champa.
    Asoka’s chief queen for most of his reign was Asandhimitta who is well
spoken of in the Mahavamsa. On the death of Asandhimitta, Tissarakkha was
raised to the rank of chief queen. Comments on the latter in Buddhist sources
are not complimentary, since she was responsible for injuring the bodhi tree.
Another queen, Karuvaki, is mentioned in the Queen’s Edict inscribed on a
pillar at Allahab AD, in which her religious and charitable donations are
referred to. She is described as the mother of the prince Tivara, the only one
to be mentioned by name in the inscriptions. It has been suggested that
Karuvaki was in fact the real name of the queen Tissarakkha, and that she
assumed the latter name on becoming chief queen. One more queen referred
to in the Divyavadana as a third wife of Asoka was Padmavati. Although
Padmavati was never a chief queen, she was all the same the mother of the
crown prince Kunala, also called Dharmavivardhana.
    The Rajatarangini mentions Jalauka as another son of Asoka, but his
mother’s name is not given. Two of Asoka’s daughters are known to us. One
was Sanghamitra of the Ceylonese chronicles. The other was Charumati, and
is said to have married Devapala, a Kshatriya of Nepal. Of the grandsons of
Asoka, the two most frequently mentioned are Samprati (the son of Kunala)
and Dasaratha.
    The following events concerning the last years of Asoka are related by
the Mahavamsa. In the 29th year of his reign, his chief queen Asandhimitta
died. In the fourth’ year after this, in 237 BC he raised Tissarakkha to the rank
of chief queen. Two years later, she, being jealous of the king’s devotion to
the bodhi tree, injured the tree by piercing it with a poisonous thorn, thereby
causing it to whither away. Asoka, being extremely upset at this, managed to
nurture what little part of the tree remained alive with great care, and thus
was able to save the tree. The