P. Shungoonny Menon
A HISTORY OF TRAVANCORE

First edition: 1878 , New edition1983

This monumental work first published in 1878 was an improvement upon the earlier 'Malayalam Pamphlet' compiled by Pachu Moothathu of Vaikom ten years earlier. This volume traces the History of Travancore from the earliest times to the end of the reign of Marthanda Varma Maharaja in 1851. The learned author, Shungoonny Menon spurned the offers of high offices to attend to the preparation of this work, which in his own words, was a labour of love.

Table of contents

CHAPTER I

Ancient names of the province- Titles of its Sovereigns explained - Early mention of Travancore in the Puranas - The Puranas as historic records - Brief description of the 18 Puranas - The Ramayana, Bharatha and Harivamsa - The Madura Temple - The 56 kingdoms of Bharatha - Boundaries of ancient Chera - Early emperors - Ancestral line of the Chera dynasty - Kerala or Malayalam recovered from the sea - The exploits of Parasu Rama - The Kerala Mahatmyam - Udaya Vurmah, the head of Chola Royal family - List of kings in the Kali Yugam - Kuleshekhara Perumal, the great Vaishnava Devotee and poet - The era of Vicramadithya - Konga kings - Caste of the Konga and the Chera kings - Chera incorporated with Travancore - Old inscriptions - A copper sasanum - Kerala Ulppathy - Pachu Moothathu's account of Travancore   - Cheraman Perumal - Sanscrit scholars in Keralam - Further proof of the antiquity of the Travancore dynasty - Astronomical calculations - The Travancore and Cochin royal families - Difference between Samantha and Samanther - False notions about Hirannya Garbham - Brief account of the ceremonies Thulapurusha danam and Hirannya garbha danam - The Numboory community - The renowned Vedantist Sankara Acharyar - Rules for protecting female chastity - The devaswams - The military system adopted by Travancore kings - Travancore coins - The end of the Perumal Viceroyalty - Origin of the Cochin Rajah And the Zamorin of Calicut - The Five Swaroopams - A new era introduced by king Udaya Marthanda Vurmah - The Panthalam Rajah - The Cochin Rajah extends his sovereignity - Mahomedan invasion - Short notices from Travancore kings - Ecclesiastical system organized - Conspiracy against king Adithya Vurmah - A Mahomedan Sirdar forces, Mahomedan customs - Battle between Kerala Vurmah and the Sirdar - Victory of the former who is subsequently assassinated - Adoption of a member into the royal family - Prince Marthanda Vurmah and his exploits - Treaty with the Madura government; - Intercourse with Europeans in early times……
CHAPTER II

King Rama Vurmah's successor - State of the kingdom - His efforts to improve it - Difficulties with the the Pandyan government - Raising of a Maraver army - Withdrawal of the Trichinopoly contingent -  a confederacy - Disputes about the throne - Rebuilding of the Trivandrum Pagoda by the Rajah - Works of public utility undertaken - Papu Thambi plots against the Rajah - Destruction of Papu Thambi and his party - War with Kayamkulam whose Rajah sues for peace - Annexation of Territory - Disputes between Travancore and Dutch East India Company - A Dutch detachment defeated by the Travancore army - Dutch Reinforced from Ceylon - Travancore treats with the government of Pondicherry - battle of Colachel - Treatment of Dutch Prisoners - Eustatious D'lanoy and Donadi - The siege of Kilimanoor - Fall of Cottayam - A diary of the Rajah's warlike movements - Confederacy of Petty Chiefs - Treaty with the Dutch - The Ambalapulay Rajah defeated and taken prisoner - Capture of Chunganacherry - Renewed struggle with Cochin - Some of the Malabar Princes rebel -  Travancore comes in contact with Hyder Ali - The Nabob's Viceroy at Thrichinopoly declares his independence - Mahomed Ali and the English alliance with him - Capture of Kalacaud fort - Defeat of the Zamorin of Calicut - D'Lanoy appointed Commander-in-chief of the Travancore army - Measures taken to protect Travancore - The reform of its Administration and the promotion of the Welfare of its people - An important council held - The celebration of the first Murajapom - An act of religious devotion - Useful Public Works carried out - The death of Rama Iyen Dalawah - The last instructions of the Maha Rajah - Providential interpositions - Review of the Maha Rajah's Career ……
CHAPTER III

Rama Vurmah - Travancore divided - The Zamorin of Calicut - Construction of Fortifications - War with Maphuz Khan Sahib - Yusuff Khan Rebels - The Madras Government interferes - Kesava Pillay - Treaty between Hyder Ali and the Madras Government - Ambassador sent to mysore - Survey of Travancore - War with Hyder Ali - Death of D'lanoy - Pilgrimage to Ramaswaram - Intercourse with Europeans - Prosperous state of Travancore - Kesava Pillay - Tippoo invades Malabar - English officers and Sir Archibald Campbell - Negotiation with the Dutch - The Madras government remonstrates - War with Tippoo - Contributions to the war - The malabar princes - Improvement of Alleppey - Forest Conservancy - Public Works - Revised Treaty with British Government - Death of the Maha Rajah - His Acts……

CHAPTER IV

Bala Rama Vurmah - The favourites of His Highness - Death of Dewan Rye Kesava Das - Jayanthen Sankaren Namboory raised to power - Extortion - Valu thamby and his party rebel - New Dewan appointed - Palace intrigues - Murder of two high officials - Valu Thamby appointed Dewan - The system of administration improved - Major Macauly appointed Resident - Valu Thamby Dalawah's administration - Revolt against him - Lord Wellesely's letter on the same - The new treaty of 1805 - Embarassed state of Travancore finances - Disputes about payment of troops - Death of Suba Iyen - Conspiracy and attempt on Colonel Macaulay's life - Murder of British Soldiers - Report of the Resident - Proclamation of the Dewan -  Its effect - Proclamation of the British Government - British force sent against Travancore - Reward offered for the apprehension of the Dewan - His death - Leaders of the insurrection punished - Narrative of proceedings of British troops - Measures of the new Dewan - Differences between him and the Maharajah - The Eliah Rajah - Colonel Munro appointed Resident - Death of the Maha Rajah- Review of his Reign ……
 

CHAPTER V

Her Highness Lekshmi Bhye - Her character - Colonel Munro acts as the Dewan - Reforms - Financial improvements - Death of her Highness - Her prosperous Reign - The Satta Warriola - Review of the Ranee's reign

CHAPTER VI

Prince Rama Vurmah - The Regent Gauree Parwathi Ranee - Selection of a Dewan - His dismissal - Raman Menon appointed - His high character - European Commercial Agent at Alleppey - Colonel McDowall appointed Resident - Description of the Marriage ceremonies of Princess Rugmini Bhye - Colonel McDowall died 1820 - Colonel Newall appointed - Palace intrigues - Administration of Peishcar Vencatta Row - The studies of the two princes - Liberal treatment of Missionaries by the Ranee - Opening of Syrian College at Cottayam - The Ranee's Regency closes ……

CHAPTER VII

The Real king of Travancore - His scholastic attainments - Suba Row's administration - Mr.Lushington, Governor of Madras visits Travancore - Improvements - Code of Regulations - English school opened at Trivandrum - The observatory - Irrigation and Maramuth department - The Maha Rajah's court - General Cullen appointed Resident - Misunderstandings - Religious acts of Maha Rajah - Financial embarrassments - The last hours and death of Maha Rajah …….

CHAPTER VIII

His Highness Marthanda Vurmah, Maha Rajah - His Highness' Character and attainments - His Highness' devotion to medical science - The Maha Rajah's visit to H.M.Frigate, Jupiter - European style of living - Lord Ephinstone and the Maha Rajah - Dewan Krishna Row's reforms - Newspaper criticisms on the Travancore Government - Education of the young Princes - Inspection of an English Steamer - Patronage of Literature And Science - Press and Calender - Revenue from Pepper - Travancore contributions to London Exhibitions 1851 - Receipt of a letter from H.M. the Queen - Excessive rainfall - Questions about Native Converts - Abolition of Slavery - Opening of a new Bridge - Census of Travancore - Appointment of Sir Madava Row as Dewan - Lord Harris' visit Some Incidents of the Maha Rajah's reign……
INDEX

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

Sree bhagavathi .. 2 - 3
Emperor Yayathi .. 4 - 5
Parasu Rama .. 16 - 17
Installation of Bhanu Vicrama as King of Kerala .. 18 - 19
Kulasekhara Alwar .. 20 - 21
Veera Kerala Vurmah .. 38 - 39
Representation of Golden Tub Padma Garbham Ceremony .. 42 - 43
Coins struck for the Thula Bharam .. 52 - 53
Cheraman Perumal ..  62 - 63
Veera Marthanda alias Chera Udaya Marthanda .. 68 - 69
Marthanda Vurmah Maha Rajah .. 86 - 87
An Ettu Veetil Pillay  .. 92 - 93
Rama Iyen Dalawah .. 96 -97
General D'Lanoy's Military Sepoys .. 100 -101
Padmanabhapuram Fort &Magazine ..  120 - 121
Marthanda Vurmah Maha Rajah performing Thula Purusha Danum .. 124 - 125
Marthanda Vurmah Maha Rajah entering into the Tub ..  132 -133
Marthanda Vurmah Maha Rajah making over the Kingdom to Padmanabha Swamy .. 134 - 135
Rama Vurmah Maha Rajah .. 138 - 139
The Rajah of Cochin .. 138 - 139
Granite Paddy store at Manacudy .. 154 - 155
Tippoo Sultan .. 156 - 157
Nair and Sikh Sepoy and Rocket-Bearer .. 168 - 169
Clock tower, Trevandrum  .. 184 -185
Kulasekhara Mandapom .. 186 - 187
Rye Kesava Das Dewan .. 188 - 189
Bala Rama Vurmah Maharajah and his attendants .. 246 - 247
Dewan Umminy Thamby .. 258 - 259
Colonel Munro, British Resident  .. 264 - 265
Her Highness Lakshmi Bhye .. 268 - 269
Rajah Rajah Vurmah Koil Thamburan .. 270 - 271
Her Highness Gowree Parvathi Bhye .. 284 - 285
Princess Rugmini Bhye .. 288 - 289
Cochu Koil Thamburan .. 290 - 291
Dewan Vencatta Row .. 294 - 295
Rama Vurmah Maha Rajah .. 298 - 299
Dewan Subha Row .. 302 - 303
General Cullen, British Resident .. 312 - 313
Marthanda Vurmah Maha Rajah .. 328 - 329
Dewan Krishna Row .. 336 - 337
His Highness The Third Prince .. 354 - 355
His Highness The First Prince .. 356 - 357
The Prince Athum Thirunal .. 358 - 359
Her Highness Lekshmi Ranee .. 360 - 361
The Prince Moolam Thirunal .. 362 - 363
Dewan Madava Row .. 366 - 367