Sanskrit Introduced by Aryans Classic language of India
Epics Mahabharata (Great Deeds of the Bharata Clan) Ramayana (Song of Prince Rama) Oral poems Depicted tribal wars between Aryan families Written down in 8 th century BCE Comparable to Iliad and Odyssey
Vedas Translates to “Sacred Knowledge” Collection of: Prayers Sacrificial formulae Hymns 1500-500 BCE Oral, then written Blends Indus and Aryan folk lore Mark beginning of scientific inquiry in India Teach worship through prayer and sacrifice
Upanishads 250 prose commentaries on the Vedas Reach enlightenment through meditation Instruct individual on death and rebirth No guidelines, dogma, or deity Laying ground for Hinduism.
Upanishads Establishes the concept of Brahman & Atman (self) Atman: “soundless, formless, intangible, undying, tasteless, odorless, without beginning, without end, eternal, immutable, and beyond nature” Seeks to be one with Brahman Achieve Nirvana when unit
Early poetry Bhagavad-Gita (Song of God) Conversation between Arjuna (warrior hero) & Krishna (incarnation of Vishnu & Divine manifestation of Brahman) Look for: Statement of resignation Hindu thought
Puranas Translates to “Old Stories” Preserved myths of Hindu Gods Oral until 5 th Century Vishnu Purana “In the embrace of his beloved a man forgets the whole world— everything both within and without” Different than Western literature of the time?
Reading 2.24 – The Treasury of Well-Turned Verse 1. List five characteristics of the poetry: 2. Compare this poetry to: 1. Egyptian 2. Greek 3. Roman Medieval Indian Poetry
Secular Spoken, not sung No rhyme Word play 50 different Sanskrit words for Lotus Literature devices: Alliteration Repetition of initial sounds in successive words Assonance Similarity between vowel sounds
Medieval Indian Poetry Rules: 1. Describe general and universal conditions 2. Exhibit a single characteristic sentiment anger, courage, etc 3. Grief cannot dominate poem
Medieval Indian Poetry Oh yeah, highly erotic Buddhist monk Vidyakara wrote down poems in 11 th Century The Treasury of Well- Turned Verse