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(po͝orä`nə): see Sanskrit literatureSanskrit literature,
literary works written in Sanskrit constituting the main body of the classical literature of India. Introduction

The literature is divided into two main periods—the Vedic (c.1500–c.200 B.C.
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canonical texts of Hinduism.

The oldest puranas date from the middle of the first millennium B.C., but the basic texts that have come down to us appeared chiefly in the second half of the first millennium. The most valuable, by literary and historical considerations, are the Markandeya Purana, Vayu Purana, Vishnu Purana, Bhagavata Purana, and Matsya Purana. Depending on which god the purana is dedicated to, there are Vishnuite, Saiva, and Brahmanic puranas, but, as a whole, they express the basic religious, social, and ethical principles of Hinduism.

In content and form, the puranas resemble ancient Indian epic poetry. They present cosmogonic legends, myths about the origins of all creatures, and the genealogy of the gods, divine sages, and legendary dynasties. The ethical and metaphysical ideas of the puranas influenced most of the philosophers of medieval India. Poets and dramatists also used the myths of the puranas in their works. The Bhagavata Purana, in which the cult of ecstatic love for god (bhakti) is preached and legends about the life of Krishna are retold, has especially influenced religious and literary traditions in the modern Indian languages.


Bhagavata Purana, vols. 1–5. Translated and published by E. Burnouf et al. Paris, 1840–98.
Vayu Purana, vols. 1–2. Calcutta, 1880–88.
Matsya Purana. Poona, 1907.
Markandeya Purana. Bombay, 1924.
Vishnu-Purana, vols. 1–5, 3rd ed. Translated by H. H. Wilson. Calcutta, 1972.
In Russian translation:
Lallu Ji Lal. Prem Sagar. Translated from Hindi with introduction and notes by A. P. Barannikov. Moscow-Leningrad, 1937.


Wilson, H. H. Puranas or an Account of Their Contents and Nature. Calcutta, 1911.
Pusalker, A. D. Studies in the Epics and Puranas. Bombay, 1955.
An Anthology of the Epics and Puranas. Edited by S. K. De and R. C. Hazra. New Delhi, 1959.


References in periodicals archive ?
If they appeared in "divine" costumes, those were known as Puranic stories, and if they appeared in royal costumes, those were known as historical films.
The movement ends with the voice over statement that the slaying of Ravana, the demon king of Lanka, not only brought about the temporary end of the reign of the Rakshasha kul on earth, but also inaugurated what is, as per a Puranic timeline, the present Kali Yuga.
own, but its use to defend the puranic veneer of the text is rather
I shall not commit myself in this paper to a wide-ranging survey of the Parijata's various manifestations in puranic and kavya materials.
This is attributed to the influence of puranic stories about Brahma, casting aspersions on his character.
The first half of the work consists of a collation of Saiva puranic prose texts dealing with the goddess and is followed by a long narrative of the life of Gomayeju, a girl miraculously born to childless parents, cursed by Mahadeva, and experiencing all kind of hardship.
The initial years of Tamil cinema were dominated by puranic themes, but with the release of the Jayalalitha starrer Adhi Parashakthi (1971), the popularity of stories drawn from the folk tradition increased.
The Shaivite, Vaishnavite, Shakta, Ghanapath, Puranic, and Vedic schools are represented among Hindus.
Dhere argues that PunciaIlk's persona was cobbled together from puranic material in attempt to incorporate an important Saiva deity in Pandharpur into a Vaisnava narrative.
In his time there was a famous wrestler in the Tamil country who had defeated practically every other wrestler and consequently was drunk with power like a Puranic demon.
The next five articles shift to "parallels and comparisons" connected with puranic texts: the various reasons for the descent of Krsna in the Harivamsa (Andreas Viethsen); the concept of tejas as an attribute of the paramesvara in the Puranas (Paolo Magnone); the several "replays" of the Mahabharata in the Bhagavatapururana (Kenneth R.
This period, of course, is the period in which bhakti spirituality, tantrika spirituality, later Puranic literature, and the vernacular (non-Sanskritic) literatures of South Asia developed.