The topics dealt with are of as varied nature as those in his other Studies. The approach of most writers to the problems relating to Indian religions is based on literary sources; but in respect of the majority of topics discussed in the volume with the exception of the first few chapters, Prof. Sircar depends primarily on inscriptions and supplements epigraphic evidence by the testimony of literary and numismatic records wherever necessary. A few of the studies incorporated in the volume exhibit the author's search for truth spread over a number of years. Thus his investigation relating to the god Purusottama-Jagannatha of Puri began when he noticed the dominions of Ganga Anangabhima III (1211-39 A.D.) described as 'Purusottama's empire' in an inscription, in 1939. In the course of its progress, he found out, in 1946, how Bhanu II (1305-27 A.D.) is represented in his records as a feudatory of the god Purusottama-Jagannatha and, in 1953, how a literary work speaks of the dedication of the Ganga kingdom to the god by king Anangabhima. Finally in 1963, Prof. Sircar traced in a tenth century epigraph of the Satna District, Madhya Pradesh, how the god of Puri attracted pilgrims from distant regions. The chapter on Purusottama-Jagannatha in the volume is thus the result of a study of about quarter of a century.
About the Author(s)
D. C. Sircar (1907-1984) was an epigraphist, historian, numismatist and folklorist, known particularly for his work deciphering inscriptions in India and Bangladesh. He was the Chief Epigraphist, Archaeological Survey of India (1949-1962); Carmichael Professor of Ancient Indian History and Culture, University of Calcutta, (1962-1972) and the General President of the Indian History Congress. In 1972, Sircar was awarded the Sir William Jones Memorial Plaque.