1. Madhurá. The capital of Surasena, situated on the Yamuná. Its king, soon after the death of Bimbisára, was Avantiputta (M.ii.83), who, judging by his name, was probably related to the royal family of Ujjeni. Madhurá was visited by the Buddha (A.ii.57; iii.256), but there is no record of his having stayed there. In fact, the Madhura Sutta (2) (q.v.) states that he viewed the city with distinct disfavour. But Mahá Kaccána evidently liked it, for he stayed there in the Gundávana, and was visited there by the king of the city, Avantiputta (M.ii.83), and the brahmin Kandaráyana (A.i.67). One of the most important suttas on caste, the Madhura Sutta 1, was preached to Avantiputta by Mahá Kaccána at Madhurá. Perhaps it was through the agency of Mahá Kaccána that Buddhism gained ground in Madhurá. Already in the Buddha's time there were, in and around Madhurá, those who accepted his teachings, for the Anguttara Nikáya (A.ii.57) mentions that once when he was journeying from Madhurá to Verañjá and stopped under a tree by the wayside, a large number of householders, both men and women, came and worshipped him. Later, about 300 B.C., Madhurá became a Jain centre (CHI.i.167), but when Fa Hsien (Giles, p. 20) and Hiouen Thsang visited it, Buddhism was flourishing there, and there were many sanghárámas and stúpas. Beal.i.179ff.; for a prophecy (attributed to the Buddha) regarding the future greatness of Madhurá, see Dvy.348ff.

From Sankassa to Madhurá was a distance of four yojanas (thus in Kaccáyana's Grammar, iii.1).

Madhurá is sometimes referred to as Uttara Madhurá, to distinguish it from a city of the same name in South India. Thus, in the Vimánavatthu Commentary (VvA.118f), a woman of Uttara Madhurá is mentioned as having been born in Távatimsa as a result of having given alms to the Buddha.

The Ghata Játaka (J.iv.79ff) speaks of Maháságara as the king of Uttara Madhurá, and relates what is evidently the story of Kamsa’s attempt to tyrannize over Madhurá by overpowering the Yádavas and his consequent death at the hands of Krsna, a story which is found both in the Epics and in the Puránas. This Játaka confirms the Brahmanical tradition as to the association of Vasudeva's family with Madhurá (PHAL, p. 89).

There is a story (Cv.xcii.23ff ) of a king called Mahásena of Pátaliputta, who was very generous in feeding the monks, and once thought of giving alms by cultivating a piece of land himself. He, therefore, went to Uttara Madhurá in disguise, worked as a labourer, and held an almsgiving with the gains so obtained.

Madhurá is generally identified with Maholi, five miles to the Southeast of the present town of Mathurá or Muttra. It is the Modura of Ptolemy and the Methoras of Pliny (CAGI. 427f).

The Milindapañha (p. 331) refers to Madhurá as one of the chief cities of India. In the past, Sádhina and twenty two of his descendants, the last of whom was Dhammagutta, reigned in Madhurá (Dpv.iii.21).

2. Madhurá. A city in South India, in the Madras Presidency, and now known as Madura. It is generally referred to as Dakkhina-Madhurá, to distinguish it from (Uttara-)Madhura on the Yamuná. Dakkhina-Madhurá was the second capital of the Pandyan kingdom (their first being Korkai, see Vincent Smith, EHI.335ff), and there was constant intercourse between this city and Ceylon. From Madhurá came the consort of Vijaya, first king of Ceylon, and she was accompanied by many maidens of various families who settled in Ceylon (Mhv.vii.49ff). Sena II. sent an army to pillage Madhurá, and set upon the throne a Pandu prince who had begged for his support (Cv.li.27ff). Later, Madhurá was attacked by Kulasekhara, and its king, Parakkama, sought the assistance of Parakkamabáhu I. of Ceylon. The latter sent an army under his general Lankápura, but in the meantime the Pándyan king had been slain and his capital taken. The Singhalese army, however, landed on the opposite coast and carried on a war against the Colas, and built a fortress near Rámnád, which they called Parakkamapura. They managed to defeat Kulasekhara and restore the crown of Madhurá to the Pándyan king's son, Víra Pandu. The captives taken by the army were sent to Ceylon. For details see Cv.lxxvi.76ff.; lxxvii.1ff.; see also Cv.Trs.ii.100, n. 1.

Rájasíha II. is said to have obtained wives from Madhurá (Cv.xcvi.40), as did his successors Vimaladhammasúriya II., Narindasíha and Vijayarájasíha. Ibid., xcvii.2, 24; xcviii.4.

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