MUTTRA, or Mathura, a city and district of British India in the Agra division of the United Provinces.
Growse, Mathura (Allahabad, 1883).
The favourite object of adoration with adherents of these sects is Krishna with his mate - but not the devoted friend and counsellor of the Pandavas and deified hero of epic song, nor the ruler of Dvaraka and wedded lord of Rukmini, but the juvenile Krishna, Govinda or Bala Gopala, "the cowherd lad," the foster son of the cowherd Nanda of Gokula, taken up with his amorous sports with the Gopis, or wives of the cowherds of Vrindavana (Brindaban,near Mathura on the Yamuna), especially his favourite mistress Radha or Radhika.
"the sun of the Nimba tree"), a teacher of uncertain date, said to have been a Telugu Brahman who subsequently established himself at Mathura (Muttra) on the Yamuna, where the headquarters of his sect have remained ever since.
The Mahant of their monastery at Dhruva Kshetra near Mathura, who claims direct descent from Nimbarka, is said to place the foundation of that establishment as far back as the 5th century - doubtless an exaggerated claim; but if Jayadeva, as is alleged, and seems by no means improbable, was really a follower of Nimbarka, this teacher must have flourished, at latest, in the early part of the 12th century.
Vallabha, the son of a Telinga Brahman, after extensive journeyings all over India, settled at Gokula near Mathura, and set up a shrine with an image of Krishna Gopala.
Vishnu) continues to be the chief centre of worship for adherents of this creed; whilst seven other images, transferred from Mathura at the same time, are located at different places in Rajputana.
Terminating as it usually does with the feeding and feeing of a greater or less number of Brahmans and the feasting of members of the performers' own caste, the Sraddha, especially its first performance, is often a matter of very considerable expense; and more than ordinary benefit to the deceased is supposed to accrue from it when it takes place at a spot of recognized sanctity, such as one of the great places of pilgrimage like Prayaga (Allahabad, where the three sacred rivers, Ganga, Yamuna and Sarasvati, meet), Mathura, and especially Gaya and Kasi (Benares).
In his further travels he visited Mathura (Mot'ulo, Muttra), whence he turned north to Thanesar and the upper Jumna and Ganges, returning south down the valley of the latter to Kanyakubja or Kanauj, then one of the great capitals of India.