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About Boyar History


A Boyar also spelled boya (Hunter/Warrior) is the name of a caste. A leader of a group or Head of Territory. Boya is called as Naidu in Andhrapradesh is similar to kapu (caste).Boya is called as Boyar in TamilNadu they constitute the non-Orthodox Kshastriya or warrior class of India. They are all believed to have originated from an ancient people called kirata. Boyars are non-orthodox kshatriya or vratya according to manuscript.

Near about 18 million of Boyar community people are living throughout all over in India.3 million peoples are living in TamilNadu.

Boyars bounded to mountainous regions in south-eastern peninsula near the Orissa-Andhra region. The original population of Boyas was mixed with various linguistic groups later, such as the Telugu speaking community, and spread to all southern states. These Boya warriors served at the military regiments and chiefs between 10th century to 15th century in Chalukya, Chola, Vijayanagar, and Hoysala empires.


The eastern Chalukyan empire’s court was essentially a Republic of Badami, and the administrative subdivisions were known as 'Boya-Kottams'. Boya-Kottams existed across the southern states right from 5th century, according to Kakatiya inscriptions. Boya-Kottams held assignments of land or revenue in different villages. Chola-Chalukyas used the titles 'Udayar' or 'Odeyar' for chieftains at certain periods of time, which included Boya Chieftains.

The Musunuri Nayaks were Boya and Kamma warrior chieftains in the Kakatiya army who regained Andhra in 1326 from the Delhi Sultanate in the aftermath of the Kakatiya defeat. King Pratapa Rudra’s Kakatiya kingdom was aptly served by seventy five chieftains called Nayaks. The Nayaks, who belonged to various agrarian castes such as Boyar, Velama, Kamma, Reddy, Telaga, and Balija, were divided by mutual jealousy and rivalry, but were valiant cousins.

The Chitradurga Palaegar (Polygar) family was of the Beda or Boya, caste and belonged to one of the hunting hill tribes. According to one tradition, the Boya families emigrated from Jadikal-durga, in the neighbourhood of Tirupati, and settled at Nirutadi, near Bramhasagara, at about 1475 AD. They are said to have belonged to the Kamageti family. The son and the grandson of one of these was named Hire Hanummappa Nayaka and Timmanna Nayaka, respectively. There were many battles in the reign of this Nayaka between Chitradurga, Harapanahalli, Rayadurga, and Bijapur, in all of which the Nayaka had splendid success. ([9])Rayadurg and Kalyandurg are two important forts which were ruled by Boya Palaegars. The name Kalyandurg came from Boya Kalyanappa, who was a Palaegar in the 16th century. Rayadurg was originally a stronghold of Boya Palaegar, which was very turbulent during the Vijayanagar rule. Kalyandurg was under the rule of Sri Krishnadevaraya and was a part of Vijayanagar Empire.([10]) Sri Krishnadevaraya was ruling over the Vijayanagar empire from 1509 AD to 1529 AD. In about 1562, there were very well-known Nayakas in the Vijayanagar army were 'Boya Ramappa' and 'Tipparaju', the Boya chief of Pulivendakonda and the palaegars of Kotakonda-Kappatralla.

In about 1517, Chitradurga Fort was given by Vijayanagar ruler to a Boya chief. It became a tributary to Bijapur after fall of Vijayanagar. There were portraits of ‘A Boya of Rank’, a member of the royal caste (related to royal family) of Chitradurga Nayaks who was documented by Colin Mackenzie.([11])

These princes and Boya chiefs were invariably valorous in battle, merciful and generous to their enemies, wise and discreet in their administration, far-sighted in their policy, thoroughly religious and orthodox in their belief and liberal to a fault. These powerful chieftains had some French engineers in their service and built very strong fortresses and other public utilities as standing monuments of their glory.

Rayadurg and Kalyandurg are two important forts which were ruled by Boya Palaegars. The name Kalyandurg came from Boya Kalyanappa, who was a Palaegar in the 16th century. Rayadurg was originally a stronghold of Boya Palaegar.

In 1786, Harapanahalli, a town in the Bellary District, was in possession of a powerful Palaegar of the Boya caste. One of the descendants married a daughter of Palaegar of Chitradurga. The Palaegars at different times paid tribute to the Nizam, Morari Rao of Gooty and the Peshwa. The fort was deserted and now in ruins.

Later, in 17th century, the Boyars distinguished themselves as smiths, sculptors, nobles, leaders, priests, landlords, temple sculptors, arm traders, and seafarers.

References


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ARULMIGU Sangameswarar Thirukoil,Kottai,Coimbatore Thalavaralaru.

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Indian caste by John Wilson

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