rāmāyaṇa रामायण

Definition: n. (ramāyaṇa-) Name of vālmīki-'s celebrated poem, describing the"goings" ([ ayana-]) of rāma- and sitā- (it contains about 24000 verses in 7 books called kāṇḍa-s, viz. 1. bāla-kāṇḍa- or ādi-kāṇḍa-;2. ayodhyā-kāṇḍa-;3. araṇya-kāṇḍa-;4. kiṣ-kindhyā-kāṇḍa-;5. sundara-kāṇḍa-;6. yuddha-kāṇḍa-;7. uttara-kāṇḍa-;part of the 1st book and the 7th are thought to be comparatively modern additions;the latter gives the history of rāma- and sītā- after their re-union and installation as king and queen of ayodhyā-, afterwards dramatized by bhava-bhūti- in the uttara-rāma-caritra-; rāma-'s character, as described in the rāmāyaṇa-, is that of a perfect man, who bears suffering and self-denial with superhuman patience;the author, vālmīki-, was probably a Brahman connected with the royal family of ayodhyā-;and although there are three recensions of the poem, all of them go back to a lost original recension, the ground work of which, contained in books 2-6, in spite of many amplifications and interpolations, may be traced back to one man, and does not like the mahābhārata-, represent the production of different epochs and minds) etc. (see ) .

Dictionary: Monier-Williams
Literary Sources: MBh., Hariv., IW. 335
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