Ashvagandha, Ashva-gandha, Aśvagandhā, Ashvagamdha: 19 definitions


Ashvagandha means something in Buddhism, Pali, Hinduism, Sanskrit, biology. If you want to know the exact meaning, history, etymology or English translation of this term then check out the descriptions on this page. Add your comment or reference to a book if you want to contribute to this summary article.

The Sanskrit term Aśvagandhā can be transliterated into English as Asvagandha or Ashvagandha, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).

In Hinduism

Rasashastra (chemistry and alchemy)

[«previous next»] — Ashvagandha in Rasashastra glossary
Source: Wisdom Library: Rasa-śāstra

Aśvagandhā (अश्वगन्धा):—One of the sixty-seven Mahauṣadhi, as per Rasaśāstra texts (rasa literature). These drugs are useful for processing mercury (rasa), such as the alchemical processes known as sūta-bandhana and māraṇa.

Rasashastra book cover
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Rasashastra (रसशास्त्र, rasaśāstra) is an important branch of Ayurveda, specialising in chemical interactions with herbs, metals and minerals. Some texts combine yogic and tantric practices with various alchemical operations. The ultimate goal of Rasashastra is not only to preserve and prolong life, but also to bestow wealth upon humankind.

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Ayurveda (science of life)

[«previous next»] — Ashvagandha in Ayurveda glossary
Source: Wisdom Library: Local Names of Plants and Drugs

Asvagandha [અશ્વગંધા] in the Gujarati language is the name of a plant identified with Withania somnifera (L.) Dun. from the Solanaceae (Potato) family. For the possible medicinal usage of asvagandha, you can check this page for potential sources and references, although be aware that any some or none of the side-effects may not be mentioned here, wether they be harmful or beneficial to health.

Source: Wisdom Library: Āyurveda and botany

Aśvagandhā (अश्वगन्धा) is a Sanskrit word referring to Withania somnifera, a species of plant from the Solanaceae (nightshade) family of flowering plants. It is used throughout Ayurvedic literature such as the Caraka-saṃhitā and the Suśruta-saṃhitā. It is also known as Varāhakarṇī. In English, it is known as “Indian ginseng”, “poison gooseberry” or “winter cherry”. It is an undershrub reaching 150 centimeters in height. It grows throughout the dries parts of India. Its leaves ovate up to 10 centimeters in length, with greenish or lurid yellow flowers, bearing globose berries as its fruit.

This plant (Aśvagandhā) is also mentioned as a medicine used for the treatment of all major fevers (jvara), as described in the Jvaracikitsā (or “the treatment of fever”) which forms the first chapter of the Sanskrit work called Mādhavacikitsā. In this work, the plant is also known by the synonym Mṛdvīkā.

Source: Science And Technology In Medievel India (Ayurveda)

Aśvagandhā (अश्वगन्धा) or Aśvagandhākalpa is the name of a chapter of the Kalpalatā, as mentioned in A. Rahman’s Science and Technology in Medievel India: A bibliography of source materials in Sanskrit, Arabic and Persian.—Ancient and medieval India produced a wide range of scientific manuscripts and major contributions lie in the field of medicine, astronomy and mathematics, besides covering encyclopedic glossaries and technical dictionaries.—The Kalpalatā deals with the preparation of medicine [e.g., Aśvagandhā-kalpa] from various plants.

Source: WorldCat: Rāj nighaṇṭu

Aśvagandhā (अश्वगन्धा) is the Sanskrit name for a medicinal plant identified with Withania somnifera Dunal. (“Indian ginseng” or “Winter Cherry”) from the Solanaceae or Nightshade family of flowering plants, according to verse 4.109-112 of the 13th-century Raj Nighantu or Rājanighaṇṭu. Aśvagandhā is known in the Hindi language as Aśvagandhā or Asagandhā; in the Bengali language as Aśvagandhā; in the Marathi language as Askandha; in the Gujurati language as Ghodā, Asan or Dhorgunj; in the Kannada language as Amangurā; in the Tamil language as Amukkurā; and in the Telugu language as Vajigandhā.

Aśvagandhā is mentioned as having twenty-two synonyms: Vājigandhā, Kambukāṣṭhā, Varāhikā, Varāhakarṇī, Turagī, Vanajī, Vājinī, Hayī, Puṣṭidā, Baladā, Puṇyā, Hayagandhā, Pīvarā, Palāśaparṇī, Vātaghnī, Śyāmalā, Kāmarūpiṇī, Kālapriyakarī, Balyā, Gandhapatrī, Hayapriyā and Varāhapatrī.

Properties and characteristics: “Aśvagandhā is pungent, bitter, hot and has a typical intoxicating fragrance. It promotes strength and quells vāta-doṣa. It is indicated in cough, asthma, tuberculosis and wounds”.

Notes: In the synonyms of Aśvagandhā Dhanvantarai (Nighaṇṭu) clearly mentions Vājīkarī (or aphrodisiac). Why the Rājanighaṇṭu omitted it in the properties, is not clear. Bhāvaprakāśa mentions it rasāyanī (rejuvenating) and Kai-deva calls it vṛṣyā (aphrodisiac).

Source: Advances in Zoology and Botany: Ethnomedicinal List of Plants Treating Fever in Ahmednagar District of Maharashtra, India

Aśvagandhā (or Aśvagaṃdhā) in the Marathi language refers to the medicinal under-shrub “Withania somnifera (L.) Dunal.”, and is used for ethnomedicine treatment of Fever in Ahmednagar district, India. The parts used are: “Dried mature roots”.

Source: Ancient Science of Life: Evaluation of Cyavanaprāśa on Health and Immunity related Parameters in Healthy Children

Aśvagandhā (अश्वगन्धा) refers to the medicinal plant known as Withania somnifera, Rt., and is used in the Ayurvedic formulation known as Cyavanaprāśa: an Ayurvedic health product that helps in boosting immunity.—Cyavanaprāśa has been found to be effective as an immunity booster, vitalizer and a preventer of day to day infections and allergies such as common cold and cough etc. It is a classical Ayurvedic formulation comprising ingredients such as Aśvagandhā. [...] Cyavanaprāśa can be consumed in all seasons as it contains weather friendly ingredients which nullify unpleasant effects due to extreme environmental and climatic conditions.

Source: Shodhganga: Edition translation and critical study of yogasarasamgraha

Aśvagandhā (अश्वगन्धा) refers to the medicinal plant known as “Withania somnifera (Linn.) Dunal” and is dealt with in the 15th-century Yogasārasaṅgraha (Yogasara-saṅgraha) by Vāsudeva: an unpublished Keralite work representing an Ayurvedic compendium of medicinal recipes. The Yogasārasaṃgraha [mentioning aśvagandhā] deals with entire recipes in the route of administration, and thus deals with the knowledge of pharmacy (bhaiṣajya-kalpanā) which is a branch of pharmacology (dravyaguṇa).

Source: eJournal of Indian Medicine: Jajjaṭa’s Nirantarapadavyākhyā and Other Commentaries on the Carakasaṃhitā

Aśvagandhā (अश्वगन्धा) refers to Withania somnifera Dunal., and is the name of a medicinal plant mentioned in the 7th-century Nirantarapadavyākhyā by Jejjaṭa (or Jajjaṭa): one of the earliest extant and, therefore, one of the most important commentaries on the Carakasaṃhitā.—(Cf. Glossary of Vegetable Drugs in Bṛhattrayī 29, Singh and Chunekar, 1999).—(Cf. Indian Medicinal Plants 5:409, Arya Vaidya Sala, 1993-96.)

Source: Asian Agri-History: Paśu Āyurvēda (Veterinary Medicine) in Garuḍapurāṇa

Aśvagandhā (अश्वगन्धा) refers to Withania somnifera, and is used in medical preparations for the protection of horses, according to sections on Horses (Gajāyurveda or Aśvāyurveda) in the Garuḍapurāṇa.—For protection of the horses against diseases and to nourish, to impart greater strength and vigour the following kalpa of Guḍūcī (Tinospora cordifolia) are advised:—[...] Guḍūcī along one or three or four Palas of powered Śatāvarī (Asparagus racemosus) and Aśvagandhā (Withania somnifera). [...]

Ayurveda book cover
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Āyurveda (आयुर्वेद, ayurveda) is a branch of Indian science dealing with medicine, herbalism, taxology, anatomy, surgery, alchemy and related topics. Traditional practice of Āyurveda in ancient India dates back to at least the first millenium BC. Literature is commonly written in Sanskrit using various poetic metres.

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In Buddhism

Tibetan Buddhism (Vajrayana or tantric Buddhism)

Source: A Critical Study of the Vajraḍākamahātantrarāja (II)

Aśvagandhā (अश्वगन्धा) is the name of a plant mentioned in connection with a Tantric ceremony, according to the Vajraḍākatantra chapter 38.—Five techniques to please Dūtīs as well as the Yogin himself and to enlarge a Yogin’s gentials are introduced. Various kinds of woods and plants in addition to honey and butter are utilized for this purpose. [...] The mixture of aśvagandhā, pāṭhā, kaṭurohiṇī and sap of arka-tree is effective for growing his genitals.

Tibetan Buddhism book cover
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Tibetan Buddhism includes schools such as Nyingma, Kadampa, Kagyu and Gelug. Their primary canon of literature is divided in two broad categories: The Kangyur, which consists of Buddha’s words, and the Tengyur, which includes commentaries from various sources. Esotericism and tantra techniques (vajrayāna) are collected indepently.

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Biology (plants and animals)

[«previous next»] — Ashvagandha in Biology glossary
Source: Google Books: CRC World Dictionary (Regional names)

1) Asvagandha in India is the name of a plant defined with Withania coagulans in various botanical sources. This page contains potential references in Ayurveda, modern medicine, and other folk traditions or local practices It has the synonym Withania coagulans Dunal (among others).

2) Asvagandha is also identified with Withania somnifera It has the synonym Withania somnifera var. macrocalyx Chiov. (etc.).

Example references for further research on medicinal uses or toxicity (see latin names for full list):

· Kew Bulletin (1937)
· Taxon (1980)
· Journal of Cytology and Genetics (1984)
· Mitt. Bot. Staatssamml. Munchen (1951)
· Cytologia (1997)
· Journal of Cytology and Genetics (1978)

If you are looking for specific details regarding Asvagandha, for example health benefits, side effects, chemical composition, pregnancy safety, extract dosage, diet and recipes, have a look at these references.

Biology book cover
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This sections includes definitions from the five kingdoms of living things: Animals, Plants, Fungi, Protists and Monera. It will include both the official binomial nomenclature (scientific names usually in Latin) as well as regional spellings and variants.

Discover the meaning of ashvagandha or asvagandha in the context of Biology from relevant books on Exotic India

Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit dictionary

[«previous next»] — Ashvagandha in Sanskrit glossary
Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Aśvagandhā (अश्वगन्धा).—[aśvasya gandha ekadeśo meḍhramiva mūlamasyāḥ] Name of a plant Physalis Flexuosa Lin; °तैलम् (tailam) a kind of oil.

Aśvagandhā is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms aśva and gandhā (गन्धा).

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Shabda-Sagara Sanskrit-English Dictionary

Aśvagandhā (अश्वगन्धा).—f.

(-ndhā) A plant, (Physalis flexuosa.) E. aśva, and gandha smell; having the smell of a horse.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Monier-Williams Sanskrit-English Dictionary

Aśvagandhā (अश्वगन्धा):—[=aśva-gandhā] [from aśva] f. the plant Physalis Flexuosa, [Suśruta] [commentator or commentary] on [Kātyāyana-śrauta-sūtra]

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Yates Sanskrit-English Dictionary

Aśvagandhā (अश्वगन्धा):—[aśva-gandhā] (ndhā) 1. f. A plant (Physalis flexuosa.)

[Sanskrit to German]

Ashvagandha in German

context information

Sanskrit, also spelled संस्कृतम् (saṃskṛtam), is an ancient language of India commonly seen as the grandmother of the Indo-European language family (even English!). Closely allied with Prakrit and Pali, Sanskrit is more exhaustive in both grammar and terms and has the most extensive collection of literature in the world, greatly surpassing its sister-languages Greek and Latin.

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Kannada-English dictionary

[«previous next»] — Ashvagandha in Kannada glossary
Source: Alar: Kannada-English corpus

Aśvagaṃdha (ಅಶ್ವಗಂಧ):—

1) [noun] the medicinal plant, Withonia somnifera ( = Physalis flexuosa) of Solanaceae family.

2) [noun] the plant Physalis flexuosa of Solanaceae family.

context information

Kannada is a Dravidian language (as opposed to the Indo-European language family) mainly spoken in the southwestern region of India.

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