There are two known theories of the origin of Kayasthas as given in the Puranas and as it has come down in tradition from generation to generation. The first theory is the orthodox one, and is hitherto accepted generally by all castes and communities in India, based as it is on the authority of no less than four Puranas ---viz. Padma Puran (Srishti Khand,Patal Khand and Uttar Khand), Bhavishya Purana, Yama Samhita,Mahabharata and Brihad Parashar Smriti.
When Brahman had created all the four Varanas, he bethought himself that there must be someone to keep records and account of each Varan - so he went into deep meditation of the Divine Creator. When this meditation was over, there was found standing in front of him a radiant human figure holding a pen and an inkpot in his hands. Thereupon Brahma said, "Thy creation has been from the whole of my body (kaya), therefore thou shall be named and thy progeny will be called, Kayastha and as thy manifestation has come about through my chitta (mind) and in secret mystical (Gupta) manner, thy name shall be Chittagupta. So ever since then reading and writing has been the hereditary vocation or occupation of the Chittagupta Vanshi Kayasthas - and in all governmental institutions the Kayasthas have as a rule hold high administrative posts.
This story is at par with that which ascribes the origin of the Brahmins from the head or mouth, of the Kshattrias from the arms, of Vaishas from the belly or thighs and of the sudras from the feet, of Brahma, Prajapati or Adi Purush.
The second theory or view may be deemed as the heterodox one. According to this the word Kayastha only meant residents of Kaya-desh or Madhya-desh, which was synonym to Ayodhia. On this view it is possible to hazard a guess that the class or community of Kayasthas may have come into existence by the formation of something like a guild of all those people who, although drawn from educated members of more than one Dwij varanas, (viz. Brahmans, Kshattriyas and even possibly Vaishyas), took to and adopted government service or administration as their hereditary profession or calling from the earliest times in Hindu history. They may have been or indeed were residents of different parts of India. The fact that by ancient custom inter-marriage and even inter-dining was strictly prohibited amongst the twelve sub-castes of the Kayasthas interse seems to lend some support to this view.
The twelve known sub-castes of the Kayasthas are divided as 1.Mathur 2.Bhatnagar 3.Saksena 4.Srivastava 5.Nigam 6.Kulsreshta 7.SurajDhwaj 8.Valmik 9.Ambasht 10.Gaur 11.Karan 12.Ashthana
As per the family tree they origionate as Chitraguptjee
a a a Shribhanu [Shrivastava]
a a Sucharu [Goud]
a Chitraksh [Bhatnagar]
a a a Vibhanu [Surdhwaja]
a Matiman [Saxena]
a a Himavan [Ambashtha]
a a a a Vishwabhanu [Valmik]
a Chitracharu [Nigam]
a a a Aruncharu [Karna]
a a a a Viryabhanu [Asthana]
a a Jitendriya [Kulashreshtha]
a a As regards the origin of the Mathur sub-caste of the Kayasthas, there is no manner of doubt that they are so called because their original home was Mathura, much in the same way as Shrivastavas are so called because probably their original home was Shravasti which was a town famous in Buddhistic history and as Bhatnagars are do named after Bhatner. It is noticeable that there is a class of Brahmins too who calls themselves Mathurs and trace their ancestory to Mathura. So too there are some Bengalis who are known as Mathur Babus. According to Pauranic tradition the eldest son of Shri Chitragupta whose name was Charu took up his abode at Mathura ---and so his descendants came to known as Mathurs.
The Mathurs ruled over Mathura till Qutab-ud-din conquered it. The Mathurs are also said to have ruled Ayodhya. Later on, their descendadnts accepted posts of Dewan of the same area under the Surya Vanshi family and Bundra Mathur and his nineteen generations held the above mentioned posts. The downfall of Ayodhya commenced during the Dewanship of Bal Pratain Mathur, who took reins of the kingdom in his own hands. His rule stretched through ten generations, after which the reins passed to Maharaja Daleep. The kings who followed were Raghu, Dashrata, Rama, Lakshmana, Bharata and Shatrughana.
The surnames that the Mathur frequently adopt are Dayal, Lall, Chandra, Andley, Berni, Saharia, and sometimes Bahadur. The Mathurs are subdivided into als and gotras. People belonging to the same al claim to have descended from the same immediate ancestor and share a common totem. Gotra is a larger group being composed of a number of al.
According to tradition, there were only eighty-four big villages in Brij Bhoomi -- i.e. in the Ilaka of Mathura. It is probably on that account that there are eighty-four further sub-sects called Allas of the Mathurs. Although all these Allas no longer represent or indicate those eighty-four villages as their origin and have been considerably changed under various influences such as some peculiarity of the personages belonging to them, nevertheless it is an acknowledged fact that the number of these Allas is still reckoned as eighty-four. Out of the 84 Allas families belonging to only 25 Allas or Khamps are to be found in Rajputana and of only 13 in Ajmer. The geneologies of quite a large number of Mathur families of these parts are given in this history. What is noticeable in the accounts of these families is that several of them had come either from Mathura direct or from Delhi and nearly all of them belonged to the administrative services of the then rulers and held offices such as Diwans, Ministers,Secretaries, or Kanungoes etc. --- receiving shares of the profits of land.
That the 84 Allas or sub-sections acquired their names after those of the villages or mauzas of their origin seems probable enough --- Sahariyas were so named because their original residence was a village --- Sahar --- Which was not very far from Mathura; Golghotia ---Alla is most probably derived by metathesis from Gokalotia i.e., residents of Gokal -- Narnolias from Narnole, Mahabani from Mahaban, etc. Other influences, however, operated later on to change them beyond recognition.
The 84 Allas of the Mathur are: (1) Sahariya whose branches are:Man Sahariya and (b) Manak Bhandari. (2)Jhamaria and its variant (3) Bhawani or Sadh Mehta (4) Andhley also called Narnolia (5) Meratwal (6) Manijetwal (7) Kairaina (8)Rajauria (9) Kasia Gadaria (10) Chharchholia (11) Seekarwal (12) Utrella (13) Nalpalia Lawaria (14)Servi (15) Koli orChaubisia (16) Nagbharasb> (17) Nag Kakolia (18) Nagsaural (19) Jauchaba (20) Joharia (21) Varnikhoja (22) Kasyapadna (23)Indarghora (24) Galghotia (25) Kaivania (26) Kotia (27) Pakharpora (28) Odhera (29) Meshasur (30) Tak (31) Dehliwal (32) Dhoopdasi (33)Kalorh (34) Tongaria (35) Jaubaha (36) Seephora (37) Maipota (38) Barhal (39) Mahabani (40) Kataria (41) Parabwal (42) Gopakraj (43) Jeetsai (44) Hairbasia (45) Patthar Chatu (46) Nokoji (47) Jainmal (48) Beerla (49) Karsolia (50) Bedrani (51) Chukrani (52) Mohobia (53) Khajarpor (54) Chandmoda (55) chhailgaur (56) Jenusmal (57) Davegaur (58) Chandiwal (59) Gopigaur (60) Oatgir (61) Kasyabbachch (62) Ratgira (63) Gonaroo (64) Atvia (65) Dhuronia (66) Bhujania (67) Durovidar (68) Vasudev (69) Bhandaria (70) Jagatsara (71) Tehatrag (72) Hakika (73) Jenushora (74) Jaldhari (75) Bharkhamba (76) Powalia (77) Aiwalia (78) Bilaria (79) Bak-roma (80) Seeronia (81) Kilolia (82) Karsolia (83) Chamraj (84) Jelsoor
For contracting marriage relationships due attention is paid to these Allas. A Kayastha belonging to one of the foregoing twelve sub-castes cannot (according to custom) marry outside his or her own sub-caste. Thus a Mathur would be married only amongst Mathurs (and not with say Bhatnagar, saksena or Srivastava etc.). Moreover out of the eighty-four Allas, the Alla of the paternal and maternal grandfather and grandmother would be ordinarily left out or excluded --- and so a marriage can be arranged and concluded with person belonging to all the rest of the Allas.
The Mathurs are essentially Hindu, following a pantheon of Gods. Krishna and goddess Durga are commonly worshipped. Mathura and Vrindavan are pilgrimage areas that they frequently visit.