Budaun district (Hindi: बदायूँ जिला) is one of the districts of Uttar Pradesh state of India, and Budaun town is the district headquarters. Budaun district is a part of Bareilly division. The district covers an area of 5168 km². According to the British historian George Smith, Budaun was named after Ahir prince Budh.
The 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica wrote of Buduan: A town and district of British India, in the Rohilkhand division of the United Provinces. The town is near the left bank of the river Sot. Pop. (1901) 39,031. There are ruins of an immense fort and a very handsome mosque of imposing size, crowned with a dome, and built in 1223. According to tradition, Badaun was founded about 905, and an inscription, probably of the 12th century, gives a list of twelve Rathor kings reigning at Badaun (called Vodamayuta). The first authentic historical event connected with it, however, was its capture by Qutb-ud-din Aybak in 1196, after which it became a very important post on the northern frontier of the Delhi empire. In the 13th century two of its governors, Shams-ud-din Iltutmish, and his son Rukn ud din Firuz, attained the imperial throne. In 1571 the town was burnt, and about a hundred years later, under Shah Jahan, the seat of the governorship was transferred to Sahaspur- Bilari.
It has been noted by Prof. Goti John that this city was named “Bedamooth” (बेदामूथ) in an ancient inscription (stone writeup, शिलालेख.) (inscription at Lucknow Museum)Then this region was called Panchal (पांचाल). According to the lines on Stone Writeup there was a village “Bhadaunlak” near the city. A Muslim Historian (इतिहासकार) Mr. Roz Khan Lodhi said that here the Ashoka – The Great built a Buddh Vihar & Quila (किला) and he named it BuddhMau (बुद्धमउ). Geographically Budaun City is located near Holy River GANGA (गंगा).
In 2006 the Ministry of Panchayati Raj named Budaun one of the country’s 251 special funded cities (out of a total of 640).It is one of the 34 districts in Uttar Pradesh currently receiving funds from the Backward Regions Grant Fund Programme.