Bīrūnī, Muḥammad ibn Aḥmad, Alberuni's India (v. 2)

(London :  Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co.,  1910.)



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6                            A LB BRUNTS INDIA.

the product 1026. To this number you add the years
which have elapsed of the current shashtyahda or sexa¬
gesimal samvatsara, and the sum is the corresponding
year of the era of Vikramaditya. In the book SrHd-
hctva by Mahadeva I find as his name Candrahija.

As regards this method of calculation, we must first
say that it is rather awkward and unnatural, for if they
began with 1026 as the basis of the calculation, as they
begin—without any apparent necessity—with 342, this
would serve the same purpose. And, secondly, admit¬
ting that the method is correct as long as there is only
one shashtyahda in the date, how are we to reckon if
there is a number of shashtyabdas ?
The Saka- The epoch of the era of Saka or Sakakala falls 135
years later than that of Vikramaditya. The here-men¬
tioned Saka tyrannised over their country between the
river Sindh and the ocean, after he had made Arya-
varta in the midst of this realm his dwelling-place.
He interdicted the Hindus from considering and repre¬
senting themselves as anything but Sakas. Some main¬
tain that he was a Sudra from the city of Almansura;
others maintain that he was not a Hindu at all, and that
he had come to India from the west. The Hindus had
much to suffer from him, till at last they received help
from the east, when Vikramaditya marched against him,
put him to flight and killed him in the region of Karur,
between Multan and the castle of Loni. Now this date
became famous, as people rejoiced in the news of the
death of the tyrant, and was used as the epoch of an
era, especially by the astronomers. They honour the
conqueror by adding Sri to his name, so as to say Sri
Vikramaditya. Since there is a long interval between
the era which is called the era of Vikramaditya (v.
p. 5) and the killing of Saka, we think that that Vik¬
ramaditya from whom the era has got its name is not
identical with that one who killed Saka, but only a
namesake of his.
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