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Precolonial India in PracticeSociety, Region, and Identity in Medieval Andhra$
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Cynthia Talbot

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780195136616

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0195136616.001.0001

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The Kakatiyas in Telugu Historical Memory

The Kakatiyas in Telugu Historical Memory

(p.174) 5 The Kakatiyas in Telugu Historical Memory
Precolonial India in Practice

Cynthia Talbot (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

After the fall of the Kakatiya capital, Warangal, to an army of the Delhi Sultanate in 1323, the Andhra region was not politically unified again until modern times. The local chiefs who flourished in subsequent centuries utilized the historical memory of the Kakatiya dynasty as a means of enhancing their own legitimacy. Although the historical traditions of the Kakatiyas were most persistent in Warangal, they were transmitted throughout South India by Telugu nayakas, or warriors of Andhra origin, as they migrated elsewhere in the military service of the expanding Vijayanagara empire. Memories of the Kakatiyas eventually reached down to the village level, as reflected in the traditional accounts collected by Colin Mackenzie in the early nineteenth century. Because later generations associated the Kakatiyas with the origins of a distinctive Telugu society dominated by local warriors, the Kakatiyas became an important focal point for the emergence of a Telugu identity.

Keywords:   Delhi Sultanate, historical memory, Colin Mackenzie, nayakas, Telugu identity, Vijayanagara, Warangal, warriors

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