Encyclopedia for Epics of Ancient India

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SARASWATA. [Source: Dowson's Classical Dictionary of Hindu Mythology]
1. In the Mahabharata the Rishi Saraswata is represented as being the son of the personified river Saraswati. In a time of great drought he was fed with fish by his mother, and so was enabled to keep up his knowledge of the Vedas, while other Brahmans were reduced to such straits for the means of subsistence that study was neglected and the Vedas were lost. When the drought was over, the Brahmans flocked to him for instruction, and 60,000 acquired a knowledge of the Vedas from him. "This legend," says Wilson, "appears to indicate the revival, or, more probably, the introduction of the Hindu ritual by the race of Brahmans, or the people called Saraswata," who dwelt near the Saraswati river. Saraswata Brahmans still dwell in the Panjab, and are met with in many other parts.
2. The country about the Saraswati river.
3. A great national division of the Brahman caste.

Modern Languages MLLL-4993. Indian Epics. Laura Gibbs, Ph.D. The textual material made available at this website is licensed under a Creative Commons License. You must give the original author credit. You may not use this work for commercial purposes. If you alter, transform, or build upon this work, you may distribute the resulting work only under a license identical to this one. No claims are made regarding the status of images used at this website; if you own the copyright privileges to any of these images and believe your copyright privileges have been violated, please contact the webmaster. Page last updated: October 16, 2007 12:22 PM