Monthly Archives: January 2011

Samthar Fort

Samthar fort is in the town of Samthar which was also known as Shamshergarh.

The Imperial Gazetteer of India has a beautiful description of the area. An Economic Times article gives an update on the state of the fort today.


Forts around Jhansi

Continuing the fort mapping started with the map of Hubli, here is the map of the region around Jhansi with all the forts marked. The sheer number of fortifications amazes me and yet it does not surprise me because of the significant role this region has played in the military history of the country.

Forts around Jhansi

Original map courtesy of the University of Texas Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin.(Click to enlarge)

The blue mark is at Samthar, a post that remains a work-in-progress.

Dindigul Fort

Dindigul in Tamil Nadu has a rock fort on the western edge of the town.

The area is a piece of land sandwiched between the Palani and Sirumalai Hills with Palani hills in the west and Sirumalai in the east.

Wikipedia attributes the name from the portmanteau of “Thindu” meaning pillow and “kal” meaning rock while Gazetteer of South India thinks it is derived from “rock of dindu” or rock of asura or demon.

The Gazetteer of South India on Google Books and the Archaeological Survey have more information on the history of the fort.

Champaner-Pavagadh complex

UNESCO’s World Heritage project site is a trove of documentation on the sites that are preserved under the project. In India, the Champaner-Pavagadh complex is one such brilliantly documented site.

The nomination document says:

This hill, said to be an outcome of a sudden volcanic eruption, is the only one in the surroundings and commands a breathtaking view from as far as Baroda on one side and Godhra on the other.

With hundreds of kilometers of vast plains west and north of the hill, Pavagarh gave rulers a strategic position overlooking the routes into Gujarat from the south and south-east.

Champaner is to the north-east, at the base of Pavagarh hill.

The structures present in the complex:

The building typologies identified are military structures like Armoury, Barracks, Manjanik (Catapults), Darwaza (Gates), Killa (Fortifications), Kotardi (Prison Cells); residential structures like Mahal (Palaces), Manzil, Kothar; civic structures
like Baradari (Pavilion); religious structures like Mandir, Masjid, Maqbara; Jalaashay like Kund/Hauz (Tanks), Kuan (Wells), Bandh (Dams), Hamam (Baths), Pul (Bridge), Water Channels, Vavs (Stepped Wells); residential and commercial precincts.[Emphasis added]