aristocracy and graciousness. A legacy of valour combined with a culture
steeped in spiritualism, education and modernism. Kolhapur with its
myriad images emerges as a city with a multi-faceted persona and a rich
cultural, historical and mythical past. Ancient texts such as the
Padmapurana and the Skandapurana speak in glowing terms of
Karveer or Dakshin Kashi which is, in fact modern-day Kolhapur on the
banks of river Panchaganga nestling among the Sahyadri ranges.
A journey through the past reveals that
Kolhapur has lived through the regimes of various rulers from the
mythical past to the modern age. The Hindu era lasted till 1347,
followed by the Muslim rule which was from 1347-1700. The magnificent
temples of Kolhapur were built during the glorious periods of the
Satavahana kings and the Shilaharas. The Marathas controlled this area
from 1700 to 1849. In 1849, the British took over and Chhatrapati Sahu
Maharaj was installed as the ruler of Kolhapur.
Chhatrapati Sahu Maharaj's reign lent a
progressive spirit to the city and he extended his patronage to theatre,
films, music, painting, sculpture, wrestling and crafts. As result, the
city has a rich cultural ethos. In 1945, archaeological excavations
close to a hill named Brahmagiri on the banks of the river Panchaganga
revealed the existence of an ancient town dating back to the Roman
times. Today, Kolhapur combines its artistic past with a dynamic present
and is a modern, industrial city.