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International Journal of Humanities & Social Science Studies (IJHSSS)            

A Peer-Reviewed Bi-monthly Bi-lingual Journal of Humanities & Social Science=

ISSN: 2349-6959 (= Online), ISSN: 2349-6711 (Print)

Volume-I, Issue-I, July 2014

Published by Scho= lar Publications, Karimganj, Assam, India, 788711

Website: http://www.ijhsss.com=


Matrimonial Alliances between the royal houses of Tripura and Manipur in the days of monarchy

Memchaton = Singha

Assistant Professor Dept. of History Rabindrasadan Girls’ College, Karimganj



Manipur and Tripura are two important integral states of North east India with a lo= ng glorious history of its own. Both the states maintained cordial relationship from the very early period despite regular intervals of conflicts. Marriage alliances between the royal families of Manipur and Tripura were common phe= nomena which began from remote antiquity and continued till 20th centur= y. The instance of first marriage alliance occurred during the reign of Tripura king Taidakshin, the 43rd Raja.  However, the most notable cases of matrimonial alliances between Manipur and Tripura started towards the end o= f 18th century. The distinctive feature in the marriages was that the Rajas of Tripura marr= ied not only Manipuri princesses but also many Manipuri girls belonging to pleb= eian family. The marriage alliances not only brought cordial relations between t= he two kingdoms but also there was cultural assimilation. The tradition of marrying Manipuri girls were even followed by many noblemen of the Tripura royal family. Tripura also witnessed various public welfare works that was contributed by the Manipuri Maharanis. Thus, we find that the Tripura royal house was filled with descendants from the Manipuri queens. This article focuses on providing a chronological historical account of the matrimonial alliances that occurred in the royal families of Manipur and Tripura during the period of monarchies. It also highlights the basic causes behind the arrangement of the marriages and also the cultural amalgamation between the two states.

Keywords: Royal families, matrimonial alliances, monarchies, wed-lock, Meitei Queens,= inter-dynastic.


     Tripura is one of the important seven sisters’ states of North East India. The state in bounded on the north, wes= t, south and south-east by Bangladesh. In the east Tripura shares boundary with the state of Assam and Mizoram. About the state of Tripura we find mention = in the famous epic the ‘Mahabharata’. This naturally highlight about a very ancient origin of the kingdom. Tripura was ruled by various commanding rule= rs who thrived in setting a landmark in the historical arena of India. Accordi= ng to the royal chronicle of Tripura “Sri Rajmala” and other ancient literatur= es of the state the dynasty trace their origin from the Lunar dynasty and from= the great king Yayati. However, Druhyu, the son of king Yayati laid the foundat= ion of Tripura dynasty. The kings = of Tripura began to suffix the title of “Manikya” from the reign of Ratna Fa or Ratna Manikya. The descendents of Ratna Manikya ruled the kingdom without m= uch interference from the British. But, in 1765 A.D. the opportunity aroused for the British and Tripura was brought under the British colonial rule. Howeve= r, it was not kept under the direct control by the British authorities. The state existed as an independ= ent princely state and maintained its integrity unless the kingdom joined in the Indian Union on Oct. 15, 1949.

     Manipur like Tripura is an important= state of North East India. Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru has called the land as ‘Jewel = of India’ as well as a melting pot of rich culture. Manipur is bounded by Nagaland in the North, Mizoram in the South, Cachar district = of Assam in the West and Burma in the East. The state has long glorious histor= y of its own. The land is inhabited by many tribes with different cultural identity and ethnicity. The kingdom of Manipur was devel= oped after a struggle of conflicts between various ethnic tribes and clans or Sa= lais in the valley. The numerous groups were later amalgamated and brought under= the political sovereignty of seven leading clans namely Ningthouja (Mangang), Luwang, Angom, Khuman, Moirang, Kha Ngamba and Sarang Leisangthem or (Chenglei). These clans were powerful at some point of time but by the first half of 15th century the Ningthoujas or Meiteis succeeded to overpower all the other clans. Thus, with this the other clans or social gr= oups were brought within the social structure of this dynasty under the common ethnonym ‘Meitei’. The first recorded king of Manipur was Nongda Lairen Pakhangba who is said to h= ave ruled the kingdom from 33 A.D. The history of Manipur reached its glory to = its zenith in the field of military, religi= on, culture and literature during the reign of Pamheiba alias Garib Niwaz (1709-1748 A.D.). Hinduism was adop= ted as state religion during his reign. The state has maintained the status of princely independent state until it became a British protectorate only after the battle of Anglo- Manipuri war or the ‘Khongjom war’ of 1891 A.D. Finally, it was in 1949, af= ter two years of Indian independence that Manipur was merged to Republic of India.

     The states of Manipur and Tripura th= us formed two most important states of pre-colonial North East India. From antiquity both the states is said to have maintained friendly relations. During their princely regime they were neighbouring stat= es and came into contact with each other in many occasions such as for trade, diplomacy, dwelling, matrimony etc. Moreover, an assortment of crucial political circumstances demanded the kingdoms to come in close contact with each other for political interdependence. Such as, when there were rapid incursions of Burmese in Manipur and that of Pathans and Mughals in Tripura both the kingdoms depended on each other for relief from the intruders. The politi= cal inter-dependence between the two states was boost up by the policy of the marriage alliances. The tradition of wed-lock between the two kingdoms began since antiquity from the time of 43rd Tripura Raja Taidakshin and the tradition continued till 20th century.

     In the early period Manipur was called by the Tripur= is as Mokhali/Mekhali and to the Manipuris the kingdom of Tripura was known as Takhen/ Takhel. The word ‘Takhen’ has come from the Bengali word ‘Dakhin’ which means South= . The people of Sylhet used to call Tripura ‘Dakhin’ which was pronounced by the Manipuris as Takhen<= /span>. They deviate the‘d’ sound changing to’t’ and that of 'i' sound changing to = 'e' due to their speech habit. However, Naorem Sanajaoba, an eminent scholar of Manipur opined that perhaps, the Manipuris pronounced the unfamiliar name ‘Taidakhin’ as ‘Takhel’ or ‘Takhen'. And in the course of time, Takhen and Takhel came to stand for Tripura.<= /b> The relation between the two kingdoms was filled with mutual co-operation, occasional conflicts and war fares. There were several cases of hostilities between Tripura and Manipur particularly between 16th to 18= th centuries, they were in 1533, 1634, 1696 and 1724 A.D. The most remarkable armed clash between the two took place during the reign of Tripura king Dha= rma Manikya II (1717-1733 A.D.) and the Manipuri king Garib Niwaz or Pamheiba (1709-1748 A.D.). In this battle Tripuris suffered severe defeat in the han= ds of the Manipuri troops. In order to commemorate the glorious victory over Tripura, a book was written called “Takhel Ngamba” (Conqueror of Tripura). However, despite such hostilities, the traditions of wed-lock between the t= wo kingdoms were common phenomena since centuries back. In the lig= ht of history the first reference of matrimonial alliances between the royal hous= es of Manipur and Tripura is recorded in the royal chronic= le of Tripura “Sri Rajmala” that Tripura Raja Taidakshin, grandson of king Trilochana married a princess of Mekhali (modern Manipur). But, it is unfortunate that there is absence of support= ive sources about the event of the marriage. Again, due to divergence in the chronology of Tripura kings an authentic date cannot be fixed. After this w= e do not find references of matrimonial alliances between the two kingdoms for m= any centuries. Scores of years later the state chronicle of Manipur “Cheitharol Kumbaba” recorded for the first time that in 1609 A.D. Akhoicham girl ‘Yang= nu’ was married to king of Takhen (modern Tripura). It can be contemplated as per t= he date of the marriage that the ruling monarchs of the kingdoms were perhaps = Meitei king Khagemba (1597–1652 A.D) and the Tripura Raja Yosodhar Manikya (1600-1= 623 A.D.).

     In the following years there were many references about diplomatic correspondences between the two states but it was until 18th cen= tury that we find rare mention of any inter-dynastic marriage alliances. But, Na= lini Ranjan Roychoudhury has mentioned about sending an envoy in 1662-63 A.D. to= the court of Manipur accompanied by one girl and one elephant. But no further information is provided on the issue. However, the most prominent cases of matrimonial alliances between Manipur and Tripura started towards the end o= f 18th century. At the end of the 18th century in 1785 A.D., Rajdhar Manikya II ascended the throne of Tripura and ruled up to 1804 A.D. In Mani= pur, his contemporary Raja was king Bhagyachandra alias Joy Singha (1759-1761 &a= mp; 1763-1798 A.D.). During their rule the first historically significant marri= age union took place. The old Raja Bhagyachandra of Manipur was a religious individual and after installing his eldest son Prince Labanyachandra as new king of Manipur started for pilgrimages to numerous secret holy places of I= ndia in 1798 A.D. On his journey he also visited Tripura and halted back at Agartala, the capital for some days. During his stay he gave one of his daughter princess Hariseswari in marriage to Tripura king Rajdhar Manikya I= I. Thus, with this the old tradition of wed-lock between the royal houses was = renewed. The ‘Kanya Dana’ or ‘Girl offering ceremony’ of Princess Hariseswari was performed by her brother Sri Tulajit. This marriage was effective in bringing genial relations among the states. Follo= wing the wedding, Raja Joy Singha did not extend his stay for long at Agartala a= nd started for his pilgrimage. The journey thus being through water ways the Tripura Raja helped him by supplying 15 boats for the river journey and als= o gave seven hundred silver coins to Raja Bhagyachandra for his travelling expense= s. After the marriage alliance road connecting Tripura and Manipur were widened and easy immigration between the states became constant. It was in 1804 that the Meiteis even helped the Tripuris in suppressing raids made by the Kukis in the Tripura border.

     The new Queen Hariseswari brought all along the idol of “Sri Radhamadhav” from her parental house which was installed in the royal compo= und. The king brought the priest of the temple, some musicians, some noble men a= nd maid attendants of the Queen from Manipur and gave them settlement near the royal house at a village called ‘Mekhlipara’ (village of Manipuris). But, unfortunately, at present no Mekhli/Meitei inhabits in the village. When the capital of the kingdom shifted from old Agartala to the new Agartala (Nutan Haveli) during the reign of king Krishna Kishore Manikya (1829-1849 A.D.) t= he deity of the “Sri Radhamadhav” was brought to the new place and installed to the north of the royal palace. After the name of the Radhamadhav the place = came to known as ‘Radhanagar’. Many Hindu festivals like ‘Maharasa’ (of various forms) are performed in this temple every year like an imitation as done in ‘Sri Sri Govindajee’ temple of Manipur.  <= /span>After the = death of Rajdhar Manikya his son Ram Ganga Manikya succeeded the throne of Tripur= a. The king did not marry any of the Meitei girls like his father.

     The footstep of marrying Manipuri girls by the Tripuri Rajas continu= ed thereafter. The distinguished verity of the later marriages was that the Tripura Rajas not only married the princesses of the royal family of Manipur but also the Meitei maidens who have migrated and settled in Tripura due to political instability in their native or for economic necessity. The major Meitei migration in the kingdom of Tripura took during the Burmese invasion= of Manipur in 1819 to 1825 A.D. which is called in the history of Manipur as t= he ‘Seven Years Devastation’, many Manipuris had to flee from their native land and took settlement in the nearby kingdoms. Among them numerous obtained shelter at Tripura and later became permanent domicile of the land. The then Raja of Tripura Kashichandra Manikya (1826-1829 A.D.) was fascinated by the beauty, cleanliness and plethora of health of the Manipuri girls. In 1826 A= .D., being captivated by the beauty of Meitei princess Kutilakha/Kutilakshi of Manipur, the king married her. The king also married three other Manipuri g= irls who were from plebeian families. The Meitei Queen Kutilakshi gave birth to a son named Krishnachandra who was appointed as Barthakur in later years. But it was unfortunate that the prin= ce Krishnachandra died at his early age. Kashichandra Manikya also had many ot= her wives from different communities. Prince Kashichandra Manikya also married = the daughter of the king of Assam named Ratnamala on 21st December 1= 822. The retinue of the princess was provided settlement near ‘Mekhlipara’ and w= as called Assam-para and to the Manipuris, it was known as Tekhao Leikai (vill= age of Assamese).

     After the death of Raja Kashichandra Manikya, his son Krishna Kishore Manikya (1829-1849 A.D.) ascended the throne of Tripura. Similar to his forerunners, he also married many Manipuri girls and increased the number of Meitei Queens in the royal house of Tripura. Of the Queens three of them we= re the daughters of Manipuri king Marjit Singha, they were – princess Chandrak= ola, princess Vidhukola and princess Akhileswari. Queen Akhileswari gave birth to prince Nilkrishna. The three princesses were perhaps settling in Sylhet alo= ng with their father prior to commencement of the marriages. Maharaja Krishna Kishore Manikya at his old age also married a beautiful Manipuri Brahmin gi= rl called Purnakala who was a cook in the Tripura royal kitchen. The Manipuris called the new Rani as ‘Bamon Leima’ or ‘Brahmin Queen’. This marriage beca= me a matter of discussion and criticism among the subjects in the kingdom. Curved with numerous problems Raja Krishna Kishore Manikya did not take the new Maharani to the royal fortress. Therefore, he built a house at Haidra (Dholeswar) for the Rani where she was kept along with some attendants and sepoys. The place ‘Haidra’ was situated 5 miles in west of modern Agartala, which was a forest area full of woods and birds and was a convenient place = for hunting and games. Krishna Kishore Manikya being a lover of hunting visited= the place severally. Atlast the king being fascinated and attracted towards the beauty of the place decided to shift his capital there and the construction= of the new capital started in 1838 A.D. Thus, present Agartala town had its or= igin in the growth of Manipuri community. Again, it is very obvious that Rani Purnakala became one of the factors behind the establishment of the new cap= ital.

     One notable event was that one Kumari Urmilla, daughter of Krishna Kishore Manikya was married to Kumar Tilok, son of Duljit (Daoji) who was o= ne of the grandsons of Maharaja Bhagyachandra. In the realm of Tripura-Manipuri matrimonial alliances it was the first instance of marrying Tripuri girls by the royal descendants of the Meities. However, in future years we do not fi= nd any such references of reciprocal marriage.

     Ishan Chandra Manikya son of Krishna Kishore Manikya ruled Tripura f= rom 1849 to 1862 A.D. The new king also followed the long tradition of wed-lock with= the Manipuri girls. He had four Maharanis one of whom was Bengali lady named Rajlakshmi, the other three were all Manipuri khsatriyas viz. Moirangthem C= hanu Muktabali, Keisam Chanu Jatiswari and Khumanthem Chanu Chandreswari. Maharaja Ishan Chandra Manikya did not have any c= hild from his first wife Rajlakshmi. His second wife Muktabali Devi gave birth to prince Brajendrachandra. From his fourth wife Jatiswari prince Nabadwipchan= dra and from his third wife Chandreswari prince Rohinichandra was born. Maharani Jatiswari is mentioned to have 3 more girl child along with Nabadwipchandra. Maharani Muktabali was a girl of Moirngthem clan who inhabited at modern Srimangal area of Bangladesh. The famous Manipuri musician of the time Babu Moirangthem Babuni was her nephew. He was one of the teachers who introduced ‘Rasa’ dance in Tripura. Maharani Chandreswari, another queen of Maharaj Ishan Chandra Manikya was the daughter of Khumanthen Khirod who was= a settler of Kasba (Keilashgar, Tripura).

     After the death of Maharaja Ishan Chandra Manikya his brother Birchandra Manikya (1862-1896 A.D.), the next king did not stay aloof from totaling Manipuri w= omen in the regal fortress of Tripura. He is also considered as the maker of mod= ern Tripura. The new king not only continued the tradition of marrying Manipuri girls but also encouraged the development of Manipuri culture in Tripura as= the king being a patron of art, literature and music. Birchandra Manikya had ma= ny wives, of which there were three Manipuri Maharanis and one Rani. The Meitei Maharanis were Ningthem Chanu Bhanumati, Panganbam Chanu Rajeswari or Kabok= lei and Khuman Chanu Manmohini. Ma= harani Bhanumati was most favorite Queen of Maharaja Birchandra Manikya. She was t= he daughter of Rajkumar Ningthem Kulendra of Kasba (Keilashgar) and sister of Rajkumar Ranadhwaj who was one of the influential ministers of Birchandra Manikya. Ningthem Kulendra was the son of Rajkumar Tilok who married Tripuri princess Urmila. Maharani Bhanumati gave birth to prince Samarendra who was appointed as Barthakur.   It is said that Maharani Bhanumati had a premature death in 1882 A.D. which stricken the king with great grief. The depression and cry in the heart of = raja made him to compose many narratives which was compiled and came out in the = form of novel called “Prem Marichika Kabya”. At that juncture of time the young = poet Rabindranath Tagore presented the raja an anthology called “Bhangnahriday” (broken heart).

     Panganbam chanu Rajeswari alias Kabo= klei was the second Maharani of the king. She was also known as ‘Dityo Ishwari’.= The father of Maharani Rajeswari was Panganbam Premsingha Thakur, a settler of Sylhet. Maharani Rajeswari gave birth to three sons, they were – Kumar Radha Kishore, Kumar Debendra and Kumar Nripendra. The eldest son of the Queen pr= ince Radha Kishore succeeded the throne of Tripura after his father. The area wh= ich was at the disposal of the Queen was named as ‘Naran Rajeswaripur’. The thi= rd and the youngest Queen of raja Birchandra Manikya was Khuman Chanu Manmohini alias Khuman Chanu Tharo. She was the daughter of Khumanthem Kirtidhvaja an= d was one of the sisters of Maharani Bha= numati. Maharani Manmohini was only 13 years and Maharaja Birchandra Manikya was at= the age of 50 when the marriage was solemnized. The king gave the land Banamali= pur as her share. She also established a temple and a ‘mandapa’ near the present Iskon temple at Tripura. Birchandra Manikya died in 1896 A.D. After nine ye= ars of the death of her husband Manmohini also breathe her last and her shraddha ceremony was performed by her 14 years old son prince Brajanidhu.

     During the reign of Birchandra Manik= ya many development work of Manipuri culture was promoted. He encouraged his M= anipuri Maharanis to construct temples and ‘mandapas’. Maharani Rajeswari installed= the ‘Sri Sri Radhamadhab’ temple at Dholeswar and ‘Lainingthou Pakhangba’ templ= e at Banamalipur. The temple is known to the non-Manipuris of Tripura as ‘Pagla Debota’ or ‘Mad God’. It is also noteworthy that the Manipuri traditional festival ‘Lai Haraoba’ was introduced for the first time in Tripura by Maha= rani Rajeswari. The third Queen of Birchandra Manikya, Maharani Khuman Leima Manmohini also installed Sri Sri Radha Gobinda at Banamalipur.

     After the death of Birchandra Maniky= a on 11th December, 1896 A.D. he was succeeded by his son Radha Kisho= re Manikya (1896-1909 A.D.) whose mother was Maharani Rajeswari. Radha Kishore like his antecedents married many Manipuri girls. He had three Manipuri Maharanis and six Manipuri Ranis (total-9). The three Maharanis were – Ning= them Chanu Ratna Manjuri or ‘Dhaka Rani’, Thongam Chanu Tulsibati and Thongam Ch= anu Manmanjuri of Nalgaria. Howeve= r, the names of the other six Meitei Ranis are not available anywhere. Maharani Ra= tna Manjuri was called by the Meiteis of Tripura as ‘Dhaka Rani’ which means ‘Q= ueen from Dhaka’. She was the daughter of the exiled king of Manipur Maharaja Debendra Singha. He ruled the kingdom of Manipur from 1849 to 1850 A.D. The Tripura king Radha Kishore Manikya married the daughter of the exiled Meitei king ahead of his succession to the throne. During the lifespan of his fath= er Birchandra Manikya, in 1875 A.D., the king arrived at Dhaka to meet Lord No= rthbrook the then Governor General to discuss on various issues. During this trip, Birchandra Mankikya also visited the palace of exiled king Debendra to congregate with the Meiteis settled there. Birchandra Manikya saw princess Ratna Manjuri, the beautiful 10 year daughter of the dethroned king. He was charmed by the beauty of the princess and decided to make her his daughter-in-law. Thereafter, he brought the princess at Agartala and arrang= ed her marriage with his son Maharajkumar Radha Kishore. Thus, Ratna Manjuri became the first Manipuri Queen of Radha Kishore Manikya. The new Queen was accompanied by her brothers namely Damanjit Rajkumar, Chitragupta (Amusna) = etc. and the king arranged their settlement at Keilashgar. The area near Bishalgarh where the relatives of Ratna Manjuri settled i= s at present called as ‘Dhakarbari’.  Maharani Ratna Manjuri was the moth= er of the next Tripura king Birendra Kishore Manikya. The Queen built the temple = of ‘Lamdem Lairembi’ at Bajalghat. In 1916 A.D. at age of 75 the Queen died at Agartala and the shraddha ceremony of the deceased Queen was performed under the initiative of her grand-son Maharaja Bir Bikram. The most important and revolutionary Queen of Radha Kishore Manikya was Maharani Tulsibati. Unlike other, Tulsibati was a girl of simple cultivator family of village Tarou (Nalgoriya) situated a little far away from Agartala. Her father was Thongam Rupananda who inhabited along with his wife and five daughters at the villa= ge. After the immediate death of Rupananda the responsibility of the family fell upon Tulsibati and her mother. But, soon the misfortune was swept away and Maharaja Radha Kishore Manikya married the cultivator girl Tulsibati. The Q= ueen made remarkable contributions in the educational history of Tripura. She wa= s a great social activist and kindhearted person. Even today she is remembered = by the people of Tripura for her various contributions for the development of = the society. She is credited for initiating the spread of women education in Tripura. During the last part of 19th century a wave for the development of women education in Tripura was initiated by the Maharani. Wi= th her effort she succeeded in establishing the first girls’ school in Tripura called “Maharani Tulsibati Balika Vidyalaya” in 1894 A.D. at Agartala. Adde= d, Maharaja Radha Kishore Manikya also established vocational training schools where handloom training was given priority.  In 1905, the Maharani established a separate woman cell at the Victo= ria Memorial Hospital (presently known as I.G.M) at Agartala. Maharani Tulsibati also established a market and to commemorate her contribution the name of the bazaar was kept as “Ranirbazar” (Market of the Queen). Thought Maharani Tulsibati was an uneducated person = but she was expert in compositions of songs and poems. Her composed songs relat= ed to ‘Holi’ festival were very famous during the time. The temple of ‘Sri Sri Radhamadhad’ at Nalgaria and ‘Lainingthou Puthiba’ at Abhoynagar was instal= led by the Queen. Beside these, we find that in almost all the Manipuri village= s of Tripura such as Bishalgarh, Bamutia, Murabari, Daccabari etc. the Manipuri Queens erected a number of temples and mandapas. The Manipuri Queens brought along with them the culture and religion of their parental state which they enriches even in the royal palace of Tripura.

     The next Tripura Raja Birendra Kisho= re Manikya (1909-1923 A.D) had six Maharanis who belonged to the Nepali commun= ity and ten (10) Manipuri Ranis. T= hough the king married Manipuri girls like his predecessors but he did not confer them the status of ‘Maharanis’. The year 1909 A.D. was a memorable and historical moment for both Tripura and Manipur. The then Manipuri king Churachand Singh paid a visit to Tripura on the occasion of coronation cere= mony of the new Tripura king Birendra Kishore Manikya. Since years back the Mani= pur royal house with that of the Tipperah family had been related by marriage. = It was the first occasion that the Heads of both the families met one another = as relatives. The Manipuri king also visited many Manipuri villages of Tripura= and rendered financial help to the settlers. Maharaja Birendra Kishore Manikya = died in 1923 A.D. and the young prince Bir Bikram Kishore Manikya succeeded his father on 14th August 1923 A.D.  Bir Bikram Kishore had seven (7) wives (2 Maharanis and 5 Ranis). Am= ong the five Ranis, three of them were Manipuris.

     Beside the Rajas many nobilities of = the Tripura royal family also married Manipuri girls. Some of them were Maharajkumar Navadipbahadur, Brajendra Kishore alias Lalukarta, Ramendra Kishore alias Nimukarta who married Nirupama Devi, Bhadravati Devi and Joti= rani Devi respectively. Maharajkumar Navadipbahadur was the son of the Manipuri Queen Jatiswari, the third wife of Ishan Chandra Manikya. Nirupama Devi was mother of famous Indian musician Sachin Deb Barman (S.D. Barman). Thus, we = find that there were many cases of Manipuri girls who were taken as wives by the Tripuri Rajas and its nobilities. But, it is worth mentioning that no Manip= uri king married Tripuri princess except the case of Rajkumar Tilak kumar Singh= a as mentioned above. Though it was alike one way in the inter-dynastic marriages between the two kingdoms but they maintained mutual and friendly relations. When  Maharaja Churachand of Manipur died, many Meitei nobles from Tripura were sent to attend the shraddha cere= mony and vice-versa on the death of  Bir Bikram Kishore Manikya, the then Meitei king Bodhachandra visited Tripura a= nd participated in the shraddha ceremony in 1947 A.D. M.K Binodini (daughter of Maharaja Churachand) in her introductory note for the book “Itihaser Aaloke Tripura-Manipur, Itihaski Mityengdagi Tripura-Manipur” by L.Biramangal Sing= ha and Pannalal Roy has revealed that her grand-mother (in relation) Dhakarani alias Ratna Manjuri made her visit to Manipur. The Tripuri Queen being a representative of both the states made a marriage proposal for Tomal Manjuri (elder sister of M.K Binodini) with her grand-son Maharaja Bir Bikram Kisho= re Manikya. The then Raja of Manipur Churachand accepted the marriage proposal= to hand over his daughter. But, unfortunately the marriage could not be solemnized.

     The sequence of Tripura Rajas of mar= rying Manipuri girls not only has political significance but also cultural. Meitei culture was promoted and extended in whole the kingdom to great extent. They introduced several Vaishnava festivals like Holi, Rasa Dance, Rathyatra, Jh= ulan etc. During the reign of Radha Kishore Manikya Manipuri ‘Vasanta Ras’ dance= was shown to Rabindranath Tagore in his honour. The poet was mesmerized by beau= ty of the dance. The Manipuri Dance form was immediately introduced at the initiative of the poet in the Institution of ‘Santiniketan’.

     Thus, the historical evidences revea= led that there were plenty of cases where matrimonial alliance occurred between the royal families of Manipur and Tripura during the rule of the monarchs. The Tripura royal house was filled with many descendents from the Manipuri Quee= ns. The unique character of some of the marriages solemnized was that the Manip= uri ladies whom the Rajas married simply belonged to plebeian families. Such instances reveal that the Tripuri Rajas were desperately charmed and fascin= ated by the beauty of the Meitei girls. The elegant ethnicity and tradition of t= he Meiteis also engrossed the members of the royal family and interested them = to develop such wed-lock. But, it is also a fact that all the Manipuri ladies = were not always bestowed the rank of the Chief Queen. Despite the detailing of t= he marriages occurred between the two kingdoms it is unfortunate that the unavailability of proper related materials regarding most of the marriages = organized kept a part of history vacuum.

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<= /span>


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Matrimonial Alliances between the royal houses of Tripura…………..                                      Memchaton Singha

Volume-I, Issue-I                                               =         July 2014                                                                  =           33


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