Facts About Mahmud Of Ghazni Attack on the Somnath Temple

Facts About Mahmud Of Ghazni Attack on the Somnath Temple

In 1025 Mahmud raided Gujarat, plundering the Somnath temple and breaking its jyotirlinga. He took away a booty of 2 million dinars. The conquest of Somnath was followed by a punitive invasion of Anhilwara. Some historians claim that there are records of pilgrimages to the temple in 1038 that do not mention damage to the temple. However, powerful legends with intricate detail had developed regarding Mahmud's raid in the Turko-Persian literature, which "electrified" the Muslim world according to scholar Meenakshi Jain.

Historiography concerning Somnath: Historians including Thapar, Eaton, and A. K. Majumdar have questioned the iconoclastic historiography of this incident. Thapar quoted Majumdar (1956): But, as is well known, Hindu sources do not give any information regarding the raids of Sultan Mahmud, so that what follows is based solely on the testimony of Muslim authors.

Thapar also argued against the prevalent narrative: Yet in a curiously contradictory manner, the Turko-Persian narratives were accepted as historically valid and even their internal contradictions were not given much attention, largely because they approximated more closely to the current European sense of history than did the other sources.

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"No Strong pieces of evidence for The Claim That Ghazni Attack on Somnath Temple"

[From Encyclopaedia of Islam;"In the 8th century A.D. Somnath was ruled by the Cavada Radjputs, vassals of the Cawlukyas. Its fame in Islamic history arises from the famous attack on its temple, mounted from Multan, by Mahmud of Ghazna [q.v.] in 416-17/1015-16. The sultan desecrated the shrine and destroyed its idol, pieces of which were reputedly sent to Mecca and Medina to be trodden underfoot by the true believers; the whole event vastly enhanced Mahmud's reputation in Islam as the hammer of infidels. This was nevertheless essentially a plunder raid, and Kathiawar reverted to Hindu control in the persons of the Vadja Radjputs. In 697/1298, in the reign of the Dihli Sultan Ala al-Din Khaldji, the shrine was again sacked by the commander Ulugh Beg, but only came under prolonged Muslim control in 875/1470 when the sultan of Gudjarat, Mahmud I, conquered Djunagafh or Girnar from its Radja. It was eventually conquered by the Nawwabs of Djunagafh, and in British Indian times it fell within their princely state.", C.E. Bosworth, Encyclopaedia of Islam, Vol. IX, page 869. --Kansas Bear (talk) 19:40, 23 May 2015 (UTC)"The famous Somnath temple in Saurashtra, destroyed by Sultan Mahmud of Ghazna in A.D. 1026, was also of this type.", Building and Sculpture Techniques In India: Part I: The Pre-Classícal Phase, Hermann Goetz, Archaeology, Vol. 15, No. 4 (DECEMBER 1962), pp. 252-261. --Kansas Bear (talk) 20:23, 23 May 2015 (UTC) ] " 

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