In many of the inscriptions the Nolambas commonly referred themselves as Nolamba-Pallava , though the reason for this remains a mystery. Inscriptional evidence suggests that they came into existence as governors when the Pallavas and Chalukyas were supreme powers. With the seizure of Badami by the Pallava ruler Mamalla Narasimhavarman I, the Chalukyas ceded the territories that were ruled by the Banas and Vaidumbas to the Pallavas. The Banas and Vaidumbas thus became feudatories of the Pallavas.
The Nolambas who were perhaps related to the Pallava family, governed the region adjacent to these land of Pallava feudatories namely the Banas and Vaidumbas. Sometime later, during the rule of Vikramaditya I, the Chalukyas regained the lost territories. The Banas and Vaidumbas thus had to change their political relationship back to the Chalukyas. The Pallava chiefs who were adjacent to the Banas and Vaidumbas were defeated by the Chalukyas to soon come under their protection. These Pallava chiefs soon came into existence with the name of “Nolambas”.
The Nolambas were one of the significant political powers of South India. Their earlier capital was Chitradurga which they later shifted to Hemavati in modern Andhra Pradesh. They possessed land that spanned nearly one-third of Karnataka, parts of Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. Their rule extended slightly more than 300 years, first as feudatories to Pallavas, Chalukyas of Badami, Gangas and Rasjtrakutas and later to Chalukyas of Kalyani. The region ruled by Nolamba was called Nolambavadi.