imparted education to students. The agrahara consisted of a whole village
donated to the learned Brahmins by the king or any of the chiefs for
conducting educational and religious activities. Comparatively
ghatikasthanas were less in number.
The Chalukya period witnessed a phenomenal growth in literature, both
in Sanskrit and Kannada. Among the Sanskrit writers of the period, the
foremost is Bilhana, the court poet of Vikramaditya VI. Vikramankacharita
of Bilhana is a mahakavya. Bilhana wrote many other works. The great jurist
Vijnanesvara, who lived at the court of Vikramaditya, wrote the famous
Mitaksara, a commentary on the Yajnavalkya Smriti. Somesvara III was the
author of encyclopaedic work, Manasollasa or Abhilashitartha-chintamani.
Under the Western Chalukyas, Kannada literature reached great heights.
The three literary gems—Pampa, Ponna and Ranna—contributed to the
development of Kannada literature in the 10th century. Of the three, Ranna
was the court poet of Satyasraya, while the other two belonged to earlier
decades. Nagavarma I was another poet of fame. He was the author of
Chandombudhi, the ocean of prosody, the earliest work on the subject in
Kannada. He also wrote Karnataka-Kandambari which is based on Bana’s
celebrated romance in Sanskrit. The next writer of note was Durgasimha, a
minister under Jayasimha II, who wrote Panchatantra. The Virasaiva
mystics, especially Basava, contributed to the development of Kannada
language and literature, particularly prose literature. They brought into
existence the vachana literature to convey high philosophical ideas to the
common man in simple language.
Pulakesin II of Badami subdued the king of Pishtapura (Pithapuram in the
Godavari district) and the Vishnukundin king and appointed his younger
brother Vishnuvardhana viceroy of the newly conquered territories. Very
soon the viceroyalty developed into an independent kingdom and
Vishnuvardhana became the founder of a dynasty known as the Eastern
Chalukyas of Vengi. It outlived the main dynasty for many generations. Very
often the kingdom became a bone of contention mostly causing a succession
of disputes among the Rashtrakutas, the Chalukyas of Kalyani and the