TRAVANCORE ROYAL FAMILY

Travancore Royal Family

From time immemorial the links the ruling dynasties of this land had with the Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple were imperishable. Maharaja Anizhom Thirunal Marthanda Varma, architect of modern Travancore surrendered the territories that he had either conquered or acquired along with all royal rights and privileges, his dynasty and himself to Sree Padmanabha Swamy by deed of gift famous in history as ‘Thruppati Danam’ (gift at the holy steps). The year read as 1750. Henceforth Sree Padmanabha Perumal became the true monarch of the State with the Travancore rulers administering the domain as the ‘Dasas’ (slaves) of the Supreme Sovereign. The concept of being a slave is highly significant. While a servant has the option to leave, the slave is forever found to the feet of his master. The title ‘Sree Padmanabha Dasa’ had been in existence in the ruling house long before 1750 as is seen from the Temple scrolls but to a large extent it might have been more personal and emotional in nature. For example a 16th century record speaks of ‘Sree Padmanabha Dasa Boothalaveera Rama Varma’. With the submission this title became official as well in the fullest sense of the term. The successors consider it their greatest good fortune that this multi-dimensional bondage remains operational. With passing ages no shadow is seen to have fallen on the royal status of Sree Padmanabha Prajapathi; He became acknowledged as the King of the State even on a national plane. Though in Udaypur and Nepal, their dynastic Deities have been to an extent vested with royalty, even in world political history it appears unique that a deity is so fully recognised and hailed as the absolute ruler of that land.

The eleven successors of Maharaja Anizhom Thirunal Marthanda Varma including three queens, literally followed the grand legacy of devotion handed down by him. The current head of the Travancore royal house Sree Padmanabha Dasa Uthradom Thirunal Marthanda Varma follows this sublime tradition with utmost dedication. While the ‘Bhakti’ of the long line of rulers to their adored ‘Perumal’ requires no mutual comparison or proof, other than Maharaja Marthanda Varma (Anizhom Thirunal) of yore whose name has already featured earlier, the following rulers necessarily merit mention. They read as Karthika Thirunal Rama Varma hailed far and wide as ‘Dharma Raja’ by virtue of his uncompromising adherence to Dharma, Swathi Thirunal Rama Varma who achieved a permanent place of glory in the world of traditional music within a short life of thirty-two years and. Chithira Thirunal Rama Varma whose Temple Entry Proclamation in 1936 alone was enough to secure for this multifaceted personality a name of acclaim in the annals of Indian history.

Oh Monarch of the entire cosmic creation, Supreme Being pervading all that was, is and will ever be, Sire residing in the heart of humanity in diverse ways and with different names, Sree Padmanabha Swamy, pray accept these words which are submitted with all reverence and adoration as flowers of homage at Your lotus feet.

 

Travancore Kings 

Rama Varma 1663-1672
Aditya Varma 1672-1677
Umayamma Rani‡ 1677-1684
Ravi Varma 1684-1718
Aditya Varma 1718-1719
Unni Kerala Varma 1719-1724
Rajah Rama Varma 1724-1729
Marthanda Varma 1729-1758
Dharma Raja 1758-1798
Balarama Varma 1798-1810
Gowri Lakshmi Bayi‡ 1810-1815
Gowri Parvati Bayi‡ 1815-1829
Swathi Thirunal 1829-1846
Uthram Thirunal 1846-1860
Ayilyam Thirunal 1860-1880
Visakham Thirunal 1880-1885
Moolam Thirunal 1885-1924
Sethu Lakshmi Bayi‡ 1924-1931
Chithira Thirunal 1931-1949