• The successors of Krishnadeva Raya were weak
  • During the rule of Ramaraya
  •  The combined forces of Ahmednagar, Bijapur, Golconda and Bidar declared war on Vijayanagar.
  • Ramaraya was defeated. He and his people were mercilessly killed.
  • Vijayanagar was plundered and left in ruins

The Glories of the Vijayanagar Empire


  • Well organized administrative system.
  • The king was the fountain head of all powers in the state.
  • There was a Council of Ministers to assist the King in the work of administration.
  •  The Empire was divided into six Provinces.
  •  Each Province was under a Governor called Naik
  •  The Provinces were divided into districts which were further divided into smaller units namely Villages.
  • The administration of the villages through its hereditary officers like accountants, the weightsmen, watchmen and officers incharge of forced labour.


The Central administration maintained contact with the villages through an officer called Mahanayakacharya.

The Army

1. The army consisted of the infantry, cavalry and elephantry.
2. The commander-in-chief was in charge of the army.

Revenue Administration

  • Land revenue was the main source of income
  • The land was carefully surveyed and taxes were collected based on the fertility of the soil.
  •  Great attention was paid to agriculture and the construction of dams and canals.

Judicial Administration

1. The king was the supreme judge.
2. Severe punishments were inflicted on the guilty.
3. Fines were collected from those who violated the law.

Position of Women

  • Women occupied a high position and took an active part in political, social and literary life of the empire
  •  They were educated and trained in wrestling
  •  In the use of various weapons of offence and defense, in music and fine arts
  •  Some of them received education of high order.
  •  Nuniz writes that the kings had women astrologers, clerks, accountants, guards and wrestlers

Social life

1. The society was well organized.
2. Child marriage, polygamy and sati were prevalent.
3. The kings allowed freedom of religion

Economic conditions

  • Led by their irrigational policies. Numerous industries such as Textiles, mining, metallurgy and perfumery existed.
  •  They had commercial relations with, the islands in the Indian Ocean
  •  The Malay Archipelago, Burma, China, Arabia, Persia, South Africa, Abyssinia, Portugal

Contribution to Architecture and Literature

  • The Hazara Ramasami temple
  • Vittalaswamy temple
  •  The bronze image of Krishnadeva Raya is a masterpiece
  • Sanskrit, Tamil, Telugu and Kannada literature were developed.
  •  Sayana wrote commentaries on Vedas.
  •  Krishnadevaraya wrote Amuktamalyada in Telugu
  •  His Sanskrit works were Usha Parinayam and Jambavathi Kalyanam.

Decline of the Empire

  •  The rulers of the Aravidu dynasty were weak and incompetent.
  •  Taking advantage of their weakness the provincial governors became independent.
  • The rulers of Bijapur and Golconda annexed some areas of Vijayanagar.
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