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Mummadi Krishnaraja Wodeyar (179427 March 1868) ( ) was the ruling Maharaja of the princely state of Mysore in India. Also known as Krishnaraja Wodeyar III, he belonged to the Wodeyar dynasty and ruled his state for nearly seventy years, from 25 June 1799 to 27 March 1868. He is known for his contribution and patronage to different arts and music during his reign. He was succeeded by his adopted son, Chamaraja Wodeyar.

Early years

Mummadi Krishnaraja Wodeyar, who was born at Arikottara (now Chamarajanagarmarker), was the son of Khasa Chamaraja Wodeyar IX and his first wife, Maharani Kempa Nanja Ammani Avaru.Chamaraja Wodeyar IX was the adopted son of Maharani Lakshmi Ammani Devi, the widow of Krishnaraja Wodeyar II. Maharani Lakshmi Ammani Devi played a major role in the development of her adopted grandson, Mummadi Krishnaraja Wodeyar, and was instrumental in his ascendancy to the Mysore throne. The Wodeyars had lost the throne of Mysore to Hyder Ali in the year 1766. Maharani Lakshmi Ammani Devi was waiting for a chance to unseat Hyder Ali and later his son Tipu Sultan, and had sent numerous feelers to the British to unseat them and hand over the kingdom to the Wodeyars. She also informed the British about the treaty between Tipu Sultan and the French. When Tipu Sultan died at the hands of the British in 1799, she discussed about the handover of the Mysore throne, which finally led to the installation of the five-year old Mummadi Krishnaraja Wodeyar, as the Maharaja of Mysore on 30 June 1799. The ceremony took place in a special pavilion constructed near the Lakshmiramana Swamy temple in Mysore. Dewan Purnaiah was selected as the Dewan of Mysore with an indication that he should be loyal to the king till the king himself attains an age of discretion.

Ruler of Mysore State

Mummadi Krishnaraja Wodeyar attained the age of 16 in early 1810 and hence attained the age of discretion. After discussing with the British Resident, A. H. Cole, the reins of the state were transferred from Dewan Purnaiah to the king. But the king lost the services of his grandmother, who died in 1810, and also of Purnaiah, who died in 1812.

Contribution to culture

Mummadi Krishnaraja Wodeyar was responsible for the cultural growth of the Mysore state. He was himself a writer, having written Kannada books like Sritattvanidhi and Sougandhikaparinaya. He also has a number of writers in his court who together contributed to the development of modern Kannada prose; which had a style different from the Champu style of prose which was followed till then. Other important writings that emerged during his rule include Mudramanjusha by Kempu Narayana, Kalavati Parinaya by Yadava and Vachana Kadamabari. The king was well versed in many languages and could play the musical instrument, veena. He was an expert player of board games and is credited to have revived the Ganjifa game. He was also a collector and an inventor of board games.

Full name and titles

His official full name with titles was His Highness Maharaja Sri Sir Mummadi Krishnaraja Wodeyar', GCSI.

See also


  1. Annals of The Mysore Royal Family Part-1: A publication by the Royal Family of Mysore: 1916
  2. Rajakaryaprasakta Rao Bahadur (1936), p265
  3. Rajakaryaprasakta Rao Bahadur (1936), p271
  4. Rajakaryaprasakta Rao Bahadur (1936), p266
  5. Rajakaryaprasakta Rao Bahadur (1936), p383
  6. K. M. George (1994), p167


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