SATAVAHANA DYNASTY - A GRAND OLD DYNASTY FROM DECCAN( ANDHRA REGION)
1.Satavahana dynasty(230 BCE–220 CE),Indian family that, according to some interpretations based on the Puranas (ancient religious and legendary writings), belonged to the Andhra jati (“tribe”) and was the first Deccanese dynasty to build an empire in daksinapatha—i.e., the southern region. At the height of their power, the Satavahanas held distant areas of western and central India.
2.They remained in power, for about 400 years. Almost the whole of present day Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and South India were under Satavahana rule. Paithan in Maharashtra, formerly called Pratishthan, was the capital of the Satavahanas. The founder of the Satvahanas was Simuka. A reference to the Sātavāhanas by the Greek traveler Megasthenes indicates that they possessed 100,000 infantry, 1,000 elephants, and had more than 30 well built fortified towns.Under the Satavahanas great progress was made in the field of agriculture,architecture as well as trade.
3.. The great rulers of the Satavahana Dynasty Gautamiputra Satakarni and Sri Yajna Sātakarni were able to defeat the foreign invaders like the Western Kshatrapas and stop their expansion. According to ancient Sangam literature the Satavahana rulers were allied with the Tamil rulers of the Chera dynasty, Chola dynasty and Pandyan Dynasty to defeat the foreign invaders like the Scythians.
4.Gautamiputra Satakarni was the famous king during the Satvahana dynasty. He defeated the Sakas (Scythians), Yavanas (Greeks) and Pahlavas (Parithans). His empire extended upto Banavasi in the south, and included Maharashtra, Konkan, Saurashtra, Malwa, west Rajasthan and Vidharbha.
According to the Nasik inscription made by his mother Gautami Balasri, he is the one...
"....who crushed down the pride and conceit of the Kshatriyas; who destroyed the Sakas (Western Kshatrapas), Yavanas (Indo-Greeks) and Pahlavas (Indo-Parthians),... who rooted out the Khakharata family (the Kshaharata family of Nahapana); who restored the glory of the Satavahana race"
5.They were the first Native Indians who had issued the coins with portraits of their kings. All the coins of Satavahanas used Prakrit dialect and also on backside the southern language (Telugu or Kannada). Prakrat seems to be the official language of Satavahanas. The Satavahanas worshipped the Hindu Deities such as Rama, Krishna, Vasudeva etc. but they also patronized the Buddhism. The Nagarjunkonda and Amaravati became the important centers of Buddhism during the reign of Satavahanas and their successors. Saatavahana Built many Chaitya and Viharas. Most of them were rock cut from the solid rock in North Western Deccan and Maharashtra. The Karle Chaitya of 1st century BC is one of the most important Chaitya. The Viharas of the 1 century AD at Nasik bear the inscription of the Gautami Putra Satkarni and Nahapana. The Amaravati Stupa was built in their reign.
6.Gautamiputra Satakarni started the calendar known as Shalivahana era or Shaka era, which is followed by the Telugu people, Gujarati, Marathi and Kannadiga is the Indian national calendar. Earlier in 56 BCE, Vikramaditya king of Ujjain defeated Sakas and started Vikram Samvat era. His mother mentioned his title to be "Satavahana-kula-yasa-pratisthapanakara".
7.Kings succeeding Gautamiputra lost many of their territories. But the power of Satvahanas revived under Sri Yajna Satakarni, who was the last great king. After him, the empire began to decline.There isn't proper records for reasons behind the dynasty downfall.