Attimabbe was a Jaina philanthropic lady who lived during the later half of 10th century and 1st half of 11th century during the reign of Chalukya emperor Ahavamalla Tailapa (973-997) and his son Iriva Bedanga Satyashraya (997-1008). She lived at Lakkundi in the present Gadag district of Karnataka, India.
Athimabbe’s grandfather Nagamayya, hailed from Punganuru of Kammenadi in Vengimandal of the present Andhra Pradesh. He belonged to the Jain Brahmin tradition and had two sons Mallapaiah and Ponnamaya. Jaina poet Ponna wrote Shantipurana under the patronage of these two brothers. Ponnamayya died in a battle for his emperor Tailapa at a battle fought along the banks of river Cauvery/Kaveri. The other brother Mallapaiah was married to Appakabbe. Attimabbe was the daughter of Mallapaiah and Appakabbe. Athimabbe along with her younger sister Gundamabbe were married to Nagadeva who was a close associate of Chalukya emperor Ahavamalla. Nagadeva was the eldest son of the Chalukya emperor’s chiefminister/Mahamantri Dhallapa.
Nagadeva was a general in his father’s ministry. Attimabbe had a son called Annigadeva. However, while she was still young, her husband Nagadev ascended to heaven. Her younger sister Gundamabbe cohabited with her husband and handed over her the responsibility of bringing up the young Annigadeva. Being a single Attimabbe took care of her son Annigadeva and also performed her husband’s duties by advicing the Chalukya king Tailapa Chakravarti like a mother.
Attimabbe, devastated by her husband’s death, made up her mind, stood strong and led a simple religious life. Her life was dedicated towards the rejuvination of art and religion. She led a philathropic and simple life. Owing to her philanthrophy she was called as “Danachintamani”.
- She donated 1500 beaded Jain Tirthankar idols made of gold to the devotees.
- She patronised Kannada poets like Ranna.
- She encoraged warriors like Nagadeva and Annigadeva.
- She got 1,000 copies of poet Ponna’s “Shanthipurana”, a Jaina epic work scribed on palm leaf manuscripts and distributed the to scholars.
- She also got copies of the Jaina epic “Ajithapurana” scribed and distrubuted them.
- She supported the Jaina ascetics/monks and nuns/aryikas in their vihara, ahara-food and Atma Siddhi.
- She got many Digambar Jain temples built during the period.
- Kavivara Kamadhenu – a patron of the poets
- Gunadakhani – a treasure house of great qualities
- Jaina Shasana Lakshmi
- Sajjanaika Chudamani
Hailed by Poets
Jain poet Ranna wrote the Jaina epic “Ajithapurana” (993 A.D.) under her patronage. She built a wide Basadi – Digambar Jain temple at Lakkundi in 1007 A.D. and left many donations for the temple’s maintenance. Lakkundi’s inscription mentions these aspects.
About 7-8 inscriptions installed after her death have hailed her for her philanthropic deeds. Many poets have also hailed her. Poet Ranna who is know for his literary works has compared Attimabbe to the sacred Ganga river, white cotton and the hill at Koppanachala, the present Koppala which was a chief Jain heritage centre during that period. Brahmashiva has also hailed Attimabbe in his work “Samayaparikshe”.
Though she never authored any epics she led the life of an epic and remains as an example for centuries to come.
This picture postcard on Danachintamani Attimabbe has been released by the Mangalore Postal Division, Department of Post, Government of India, on the occasion of “Kannada Rajyotsava – 2022” under the “Jina Ratna Bhushanaru” series. The picture postcard has been sponsored by Hombuja Jain Math. The entire project has been led by Mahavir Kundur, Hubli.