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Vedic Literature

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Vedic Literature

shape Introduction

Veda means knowledge and was is Sanskrit word.Vedic literature is the combination of Rig Veda, Yajur Veda, Sama Veda and Atharva Veda. Each Veda is made up of collection books, called Upanishads. Each Upanishad is made up of collection of mantras called Sukthams.

Vedic Literature – Types:

The Four Vedas are listed below as

  • The Rig Veda

  • The Sama Veda

  • The Yajur Veda and

  • The Atharva Veda


Vedic Literature – The Rig Veda:

  • Collection of hymns Oldest of all Vedas

  • Associated of 1017 hymns or Suktas after adding Blhilya Sukta number in 1028 Compiled in 10 mandalas & 8 ‘Akhtaks

  • Also contains the famous Gayatri Mantra II, III, IV, V, VI & VII are oldest mandalas I, VIII, IX, X are latest mandalas.

  • The Tenth Mandalas or chapter which has the Purushasukta hymn, was probably added later.

  • Mandala IX is completely devoted to Soma.

  • Mandala II to VII was created by Grita Samada, Vishwamitra, Vamadeva, Atri, Bharadwaj, Vashistha, VIII Kanwa and Angira, IX Soma


Vedic Literature – The Sama Veda:

  • Rhythmic compilation of hymns for Rigveda

  • “Book for Chants” contains 1,549 hymns, meant to be sung at the ‘soma’ sacrifice by a special class of Brahmanas called Udgatris.

  • But the Samaveda has very little original value.

  • The Sama Veda has only 75 fundamental hymns


Vedic Literature – The Yajur Veda :

  • Book of sacrificial prayers

  • Is sung of priest Adhavaryu

  • Its mantras tell us how the sacrifices were to be performed and what part the “Adhvaryus”- the Brahmanas who performed the manual work in the arrangement of sacrifice were to play at the time of sacrifice.

  • The Yajur Veda has been compiled in fourth path

  • The Yajur Veda has been divided into, Krishna(black) Yajurveda & Shukla(white) Yajurveda

  • Prose text


Vedic Literature – The Atharva Veda:

    Mantras for magic spells


  • Populate ritualistic system & superstitions Associated with Saunkiya and Paiplad community Collection of 711/731/760 hymns

  • Not included in Trai

  • Has been divided into 20 Kandas

  • 18th, 19th & 20th Kandas are later works Provides freedom from evils spirits.

  • Oldest text on Indian Medicine.


shape Quiz

1. Which of the following Veda deals with the procedures for the performance of sacrifices?

    A. Yajurved
    B. Rig Veda
    C . Sama Veda
    D . Atharvaveda


Answer: Option A


2. What is the modern name of rig vedic “Sutlej”?

    A. Jhelum
    B. Chenab
    C . Sutudri
    D . Kabul


Answer: Option C

3. What is the modern name of Drishadvati river (rig Vedic)?

    A. Saraswati
    B. Krumu
    C . Ghagghar
    D . Gomal


Answer: Option C

4. Pratishakya is related to?

    A. Astronomy
    B. Metrics
    C . Etymology
    D . Phonetics


Answer: Option D

5. Name of which Jain Tirthankaras are found in the Rig Veda?

    A. Rishabha and Mahavira
    B. Arishtanemi and Rishabha
    C . Parshwanath and Mahavira
    D . Neminath and Arishtanemi


Answer: Option B

6. Who is the most prominent god of ‘Rig Veda’?

    A. Indra
    B. Agni
    C . Pashupat
    D . Vishnu


Answer: Option A

7. Where is the first Vedic school was established?

    A. Farrukhabad
    B. Mirzapur
    C . Ksganj
    D . Varnasi


Answer: Option A

8. Which of the following was not known during the Rigvedic period??

    A. Joint Family System
    B. Agriculture
    C . caste system
    D . Marriage System


Answer: Option C

9. The origin of Indian music can be traced to which of the following Vedic Samhitas??

    A. Rigveda
    B. Samaveda
    C . Yajurveda
    D . Atharvaveda


Answer: Option B

10. Which of the following Vedas is not a part of Vedatrayi?

    A. Rigveda
    B. Yajurveda
    C . Samaveda
    D . Atharvaveda


Answer: Option D