The history of the medieval Chola Dynasty starts several hundred years after the Sangam age when Vijayalaya Chola took control of Thanjavur city in the middle of the ninth century CE (Chandrakumar). The Chola Empire grew over the next two centuries as each successive emperor conquered new land. During these centuries as emperors died, the best suited prince would take control of the crown. This fraternal royal hierarchy changed in the tenth century CE when, to keep civil war from starting, Rajaraja Chola I allowed his uncle Uttama Chola to take his crown(Varalaaru). Fifteen years later, after the death of Uttama Chola, Rajaraja Chola I became emperor. It was under the thirty year guidance of Rajaraja Chola I, that the Chola Empire entered into an age of immense prosperity and growth (V). After the death of Rajaraja I the Medieval Cholas ruled for just over fifty years, the dynasty ending when Athirajendra Chola was killed as a rebellion over his appointment rose (Varalaaru).
Of the thirteen men who ruled over the Chola Empire it is Rajaraja Chola I who made the largest impact on the Chola Empire. Rajaraja Chola I was a gifted strategist and amassed a large military force to protect and expand his empire. For his infantry Rajaraja Chola I used the power of elephants to gain an edge in bat...
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... bathed in milk and honey then dressed to bring peace and fertility to the people, this tradition continues to be observed today by then people of south India (Varalaaru). These religious acts are not the only acts the Chola Empire gave modern south India.
The inhabitants of southern India are confronted daily by the works of the Medieval Chola Dynasty. With his massive temple Rajaraja Chola I changed the landscape of south India and the people of south India continue pass on a culture born thousands of years ago. It is this strong tie to the past that is the most impressive thing created by the Medieval Chola Emperors. Rajaraja Chola I and the other leaders of the Medieval Chola Empire formed the foundation of an entire race of people who look back on the works of their ancestors with pride protecting and cultivating their culture generation after generation.
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