Gandharvi, Gāndharvī, Gandharvī, Gamdharvi: 8 definitions


Gandharvi means something in Buddhism, Pali, Hinduism, Sanskrit, Jainism, Prakrit. 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.

In Hinduism

Rasashastra (chemistry and alchemy)

Source: Wisdom Library: Rasa-śāstra

Gāndharvī (गान्धर्वी):—One of the sixty-four Divyauṣadhi, which are powerful drugs for solidifying mercury (rasa), according to Rasaprakāśa-sudhākara (chapter 9).

Rasashastra book cover
context information

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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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

[«previous next»] — Gandharvi in Purana glossary
Source: Puranic Encyclopedia

Gandharvī (गन्धर्वी).—The first mother of horses. Kaśyapaprajāpati had by his wife Krodhavaśā ten daughters: Mṛgī, Mṛgamandā, Harī, Bhadramatā, Mātaṅgī, Śārdūlī, Śvetā, Surabhi, Surasā and Kadrū. Of the ten girls Surabhi in due course of time became mother of two daughters. Rohiṇī and Gandharvī. From Rohiṇī was born the cattlebreed and horses were born from Gandharvī. (Vālmīki Rāmāyaṇa, Araṇya Kāṇḍa, Canto 14).

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index

1) Gandharvi (गन्धर्वि).—The name om rising from Gāndhāra.*

  • * Vāyu-purāṇa 20. 3.

2a) Gāndharvī (गान्धर्वी).—A daughter of Surabhi and Kaśyapa, and a sister of Rudras; mother of horses like Uccaiśśravas.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 3. 73-7.

2b) A daughter of Gandharvas.*

  • * Vāyu-purāṇa 69. 10.

2c) A R. from the lake Viṣṇupadam.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 18. 68; Vāyu-purāṇa 47. 65.
Source: JatLand: List of Mahabharata people and places

Gandharvī (गन्धर्वी) is a name mentioned in the Mahābhārata (cf. I.60.65) and represents one of the many proper names used for people and places. Note: The Mahābhārata (mentioning Gandharvī) is a Sanskrit epic poem consisting of 100,000 ślokas (metrical verses) and is over 2000 years old.

Purana book cover
context information

The Purana (पुराण, purāṇas) refers to Sanskrit literature preserving ancient India’s vast cultural history, including historical legends, religious ceremonies, various arts and sciences. The eighteen mahapuranas total over 400,000 shlokas (metrical couplets) and date to at least several centuries BCE.

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In Buddhism

Tibetan Buddhism (Vajrayana or tantric Buddhism)

Source: The Structure and Meanings of the Heruka Maṇḍala

Gandharvī (गन्धर्वी) or Gandhārī is the name of a Ḍākinī who, together with the Vīra (hero) named Gandhahara forms one of the 36 pairs situated in the Ākāśacakra, according to the 10th century Ḍākārṇava chapter 15. Accordingly, the ākāśacakra refers to one of the three divisions of the dharma-puṭa (‘dharma layer’), situated in the Herukamaṇḍala. The 36 pairs of Ḍākinīs [viz., Gandharvī] and Vīras are dark blue in color; they each have one face and four arms; they hold a skull bowl, a skull staff, a small drum, and a knife. Alternatively, the Ḍākinīs have their own marks and motions according to the taste instead of a small drum and a skull staff.

Tibetan Buddhism book cover
context information

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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In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

[«previous next»] — Gandharvi in Jainism glossary
Source: Trisastisalakapurusacaritra

Gāndharvī (गान्धर्वी) is the name of an Apsaras, instructed by Śakra to help in the preparations of Ṛṣabha’s wedding-preparations, according to chapter 1.2 [ādīśvara-caritra] of Hemacandra’s 11th century Triṣaṣṭiśalākāpuruṣacaritra (“lives of the 63 illustrious persons”): a Sanskrit epic poem narrating the history and legends of sixty-three important persons in Jainism.


“[...] Then having ascertained the Lord’s purpose, Purandara at once summoned gods for the tasks of the wedding-preparations.—‘[...] What are you thinking, Mārīcī? What are you looking at, Sumukhī? Why are you not on this side, Gāndharvī?  [...]’. From the bustling of the Apsarases instructing each other in this way, and frequently calling names, a mighty tumult arose”.

General definition book cover
context information

Jainism is an Indian religion of Dharma whose doctrine revolves around harmlessness (ahimsa) towards every living being. The two major branches (Digambara and Svetambara) of Jainism stimulate self-control (or, shramana, ‘self-reliance’) and spiritual development through a path of peace for the soul to progess to the ultimate goal.

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Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit dictionary

[«previous next»] — Gandharvi in Sanskrit glossary
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Monier-Williams Sanskrit-English Dictionary

1) Gandharvī (गन्धर्वी):—[from gandharva] f. Gandharvī (daughter of Surabhi and mother of the race of horses, [Mahābhārata i, 2631 f.; Rāmāyaṇa iii, 20, 28 f.; Vāyu-purāṇa]), [Ṛg-veda x, 11, 2; Rāmāyaṇa]

2) [v.s. ...] night, [Bhāgavata-purāṇa iv, 29, 21]

3) Gāndharvī (गान्धर्वी):—[from gāndharva] f. speech (according to the legend that the gods gave speech to the Gandharvas and received from them the Soma in return, [Aitareya-brāhmaṇa i, 27 etc.]), [Naighaṇṭuka, commented on by Yāska i, 11]

4) [v.s. ...] Name of Durgā, [Harivaṃśa 10243] ([varia lectio] gandharvā)

5) [v.s. ...] Name of an Apsaras, [Viṣṇu-purāṇa]

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»] — Gandharvi in Kannada glossary
Source: Alar: Kannada-English corpus

Gāṃdharvi (ಗಾಂಧರ್ವಿ):—[noun] = ಗಾಂಧರ್ವಿಗ [gamdharviga].

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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See also (Relevant definitions)

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