Religion, Politics, and Patronage in a Settling Society

Samira Sheikh

in Forging a Region

Published in print December 2009 | ISBN: 9780198060192
Published online October 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199080137 | DOI:

Series: SOAS Studies on South Asia

Religion, Politics, and Patronage in a Settling Society

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When the Caulukyas declined at the end of the twelfth century, priests and missionaries of various denominations set their sights on Gujarat because of its continuing prosperity and diversity. Some of them were able to secure powerful patrons in the form of chieftains or merchants, while others became the custodians of shrines or places of pilgrimage or became organizers of pilgrimage themselves. As pilgrimage increased in importance, pilgrims regularly traversed the trade routes and enriched new sites. Despite Gujarat's well-documented association with Vaisnavism in modern times, there is little evidence to prove that it was particularly popular in this period. This chapter focuses on religion, politics, and patronage in Gujarat. It examines the decline of the royal temple cults, along with Jainism, Ismā'īlīs and other Muslims, healing and medicine, sect and religion in the sultanate, and religious conversion.

Keywords: Caulukyas; patronage; politics; religion; shrines; pilgrimage; religious conversion; Jainism; trade routes

Chapter.  23130 words. 

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