Kings of Kathmandu

Introduction to Nrpendra Malla

Nrpendra Malla was the unchosen King of Kathmandu who ruled after his Father Pratap Malla for six years. His reign resulted in the rise of Courtiers and Other Noblemen controlling the Politics of Kathmandu Valley. He ruled from 1674 A.D. to 1680 A.D. without leaving any male heir after him resulting in chaos in the Politics of Kathmandu Valley.

Enthroning of Nrpendra Malla

Nrpendra Malla‘s coronation was a controversial affair, which took place three months after his father’s death. The possibility of a succession dispute was high, with Pratap Malla‘s younger son, Mahipatendra Malla, also wanting the throne.

Both Nrpendra Malla and Mahipatendra Malla were too young to think for themselves. Noblemen of Kathmandu encouraged both parties with the help of their Mother.

However, his coronation was attended by Srinivasa Malla and Jitiamitra Malla, among others. His Coronation was strategically beneficial for both Bhaktapur and Patan.

There were rumors that he was an illegitimate son of Pratap Malla, and a section of the nobility tried to prevent his accession to the throne. However, there is no concrete evidence to support this claim.

One Thyasaphu has posited that Nrpendra Malla was the eldest son of Pratap Malla, but Pratap Malla had placed him third in his preferential list.

Mahipatendra Malla who was the second son of Pratap Malla also tried to occupy the throne by virtue of the will made by his father. he was eventually put in chains and had to escape to Patan to seek refuge.

The Minister Chikuti

Nrpendra Malla received support from King Srinivasa Malla of Patan. King Srinivasa provided him with a clever minister named Chikuti to assist in the administration.

Chikuti Pramana exercised extraordinary influence in the realm as the Chief Minister. He is said to have been ruling “without opposition”. Inscription tend to mention the name of the ruling King in Nepal. In the Inscription during the reign of Chikuti, the Name of the King were generally omitted and/or given less priority than usual.

Reign of Nrpendra Malla

During Nrpendra Malla‘s reign over Kathmandu, he signed a treaty of friendship with the ruler of Gorkha, Prithvipati Shah. The treaty was signed in Mohanchowk, and ministers of Patan and Bhatgaon were also present.

The two rulers became friends by performing a religious rite. He also allowed the performance of the dance of Harisiddhi at Deopatan by welcoming Prithvipati Shah.

Death of Nrpendra Malla

Death of Nrpendra Malla

In 1679 A.D. an epidemic of Smallpox emerged throughout the Kathmandu Valley. It took the lives of important Royal Personalities including Nrpendra Malla’s Sister Siddhilakshmi as well as her son.

Further, Nrpendra Malla also died in 1780 A.D. without leaving an heir for the throne. Nine women were also burnt with him at the royal funeral of Deupatan.

Conclusion

King Nrpendra Malla can be considered to have been insignificant in his reign over the Kingdom of Kathmandu. He reigned over Kathmandu temporarily, didn’t enact or introduce significant changes and saw Kathmandu crumbling with instability and upheaveals.

References

  • Regmi, Dilli Raman. “Medieval Nepal” Four Volumes. Firma K, 1965-66
  • Shaha, R. (2001). Ancient and Medieval Nepal. India: Manohar.
  • Slusser, Mary S Nepal Mandala, “A Cultural Study of the Kathmandu Valley Two Volumes” Princeton University Press, 1982 C.E.
  • Levi Sylvain: Le Nepal, Etuda Historique d’um royaume Izindou, 3 volumes, Paris, 1905
  • Subedi, Raja Ram, 2061, “Nepalko Tathya Itihas,” Sajha Prakashan
  • Sangraula, Narayan Prasad, 2068, “Prachin tatha Madhyakalin Nepal,” Kankai Publishers and Distributors
  • Petech, Luciano. Medieval History of Nepal Volume II. Rome, 1985

Citation

Pokhrel, A. (2023). King Bhupalendra Malla – Itihasaa. Encyclopedia of Nepali History. https://itihasaa.com/kathmandu/bhupalendra-malla/