Gunja, aka: Guñjā; 10 Definition(s)


Gunja means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit, Buddhism, Pali, the history of ancient India, Marathi. 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

Ayurveda (science of life)

Guñjā (गुञ्जा) is the Sanskrit name for a medicinal plant identified with Abrus precatorius (Indian licorice or rosary pea) from the Fabaceae or “legume family” of flowering plants, according to verse 3.113-116 of the 13th-century Raj Nighantu or Rājanighaṇṭu. Guñjā is commonly known in Hindi and Marathi as Guñjā, Rattī and Ghuṅghacī; in Bengali as Kunch; in Gujurati as Canothī; in Tamil as Gundamanī; and in Telugu as Gurugīniā.

Aśvakṣurā is mentioned as having two varieties (viz., Raktaguñjā and Śvetaguñjā) and a total of twenty-two synonyms.

Properties and characteristics: “both red (rakta) and white (śveta) Guñjā (India licorice root) have bitter taste (rasa). Its seeds are hot in nature and roots are emetic. Its leaves are  pain killer, but poisonous. The leaves of Śveta Guñjā are said to be capable of subduing a person (if worn by one)”.

Source: WorldCat: Rāj nighaṇṭu
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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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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

Guñjā (गुञ्जा) refers to the berry, according to the Śivapurāṇa 1.25, while explaining the greatness of Rudrākṣa:—“[...] That [Rudrākṣa] which is of the size of a Guñjā (the berry) is conducive to the achievement of the fruit of all desires”.

Source: Siva Purana - English Translation
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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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India history and geogprahy

Gunja is the name of a herb (oshadhi) mentioned in the Kathasaritsagara by Somadeva (10th century A.D). The red fruit of the Gunja plant, used by the Sabara ladies for making beautiful garlands, is also mentioned

Somadeva mentions many rich forests, gardens, various trees, creepers medicinal and flowering plants (eg., Gunja) and fruit-bearing trees in the Kathasaritsagara. Gardens of herbs were specially maintained in big cities. Somadeva’s writing more or less reflects the life of the people of Northern India during the 11th century. His Kathasaritsagara (‘ocean of streams of story’), mentioning Gunja, is a famous Sanskrit epic story revolving around prince Naravahanadatta and his quest to become the emperor of the vidyadharas (celestial beings).

Source: Shodhganga: Cultural history as g leaned from kathasaritsagara

Guñjā.—(IE 8-8; IA 26), same as raktikā or rati. (EI 12), a kettle-drum. Note: guñjā is defined in the “Indian epigraphical glossary” as it can be found on ancient inscriptions commonly written in Sanskrit, Prakrit or Dravidian languages.

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Guñjā.—same as rati or raktikā (1-83 or about 1(3/4) grains). Note: guñjā is defined in the “Indian epigraphical glossary” as it can be found on ancient inscriptions commonly written in Sanskrit, Prakrit or Dravidian languages.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Indian Epigraphical Glossary
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The history of India traces the identification of countries, villages, towns and other regions of India, as well as royal dynasties, rulers, tribes, local festivities and traditions and regional languages. Ancient India enjoyed religious freedom and encourages the path of Dharma, a concept common to Buddhism, Hinduism, and Jainism.

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Languages of India and abroad

Pali-English dictionary

Gunja in Pali glossary... « previous · [G] · next »

guñjā : (f.) the medicinal creeper Abrus Precatorius.

Source: BuddhaSasana: Concise Pali-English Dictionary

Guñjā, (f.) a plant (Abrus precatorius); the redness of its berries is referred to in similes; DhA.IV, 133 (°vaṇṇāni akkhīni). See also jiñjuka. (Page 252)

Source: Sutta: The Pali Text Society's Pali-English Dictionary
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Pali is the language of the Tipiṭaka, which is the sacred canon of Theravāda Buddhism and contains much of the Buddha’s speech. Closeley related to Sanskrit, both languages are used interchangeably between religions.

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Marathi-English dictionary

guñja (गुंज).—f ē (guñjā S) A small plant (Abrus precatorius) bearing a red and black berry. It forms the smallest of the jeweler's weights, and is considered as equal to three barleycorns. 2 The berry or seed. Pr. hattī jātō nāhīntara guñja māratāta A monstrous crime or error may pass unnoticed, or (perhaps) the minutest peccadillo may be heavily visited. ("A camel may be swallowed, or a gnat may be strained out." Matt. xxiii. 24.) 3 unc f n An excrescence, knot, or knob upon a tree.

Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

guñja (गुंज).—f A small plant bearing a red and black berry. It forms the smallest of the jeweller's weights.

Source: DDSA: The Aryabhusan school dictionary, Marathi-English
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Marathi is an Indo-European language having over 70 million native speakers people in (predominantly) Maharashtra India. Marathi, like many other Indo-Aryan languages, evolved from early forms of Prakrit, which itself is a subset of Sanskrit, one of the most ancient languages of the world.

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Sanskrit-English dictionary

Guñja (गुञ्ज).—

1) Humming.

2) A cluster of blossoms, bunch of flowers, a nosegay; cf. गुच्छ (guccha).

Derivable forms: guñjaḥ (गुञ्जः).

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Guñjā (गुञ्जा).—[guñj-ac]

1) A small shrub of that name, bearing a red black berry; अन्तर्विषमया (antarviṣamayā) (for °yyaḥ) ह्येता बहिश्चैव मनोरमाः । गुञ्जाफलसमाकारा योषितः केन निर्मिताः (hyetā bahiścaiva manoramāḥ | guñjāphalasamākārā yoṣitaḥ kena nirmitāḥ) || Pt.1. 196; किं जातु गुञ्जाफलभूषणानां सुवर्णकारेण वनेचराणाम् (kiṃ jātu guñjāphalabhūṣaṇānāṃ suvarṇakāreṇa vanecarāṇām) Vikr.1.25.

2) A berry of this shrub used as a weight, measuring on an average 1 grains Troy, or an artificial weight called Gunja measuring about 2 grains.

3) Humming, a low murmuring sound.

4) a kettle-drum; ...गुञ्जा जुगुञ्जुः करघट्टिताः (guñjā juguñjuḥ karaghaṭṭitāḥ) Bk.14.2.

5) A tavern.

6) Reflection, meditation.

7) A kind of plant with a poisonous root.

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Guñja (गुञ्ज).—m.

(-ñjaḥ) A cluster of blossoms, a nosegay. f.

(-ñjā) 1. A small shrub, (Abrus precatorius,) bearing a red and black berry, which forms the smallest of the jeweller’s weights. 2. The berry which averages about 15-16 grains troy, or the artificial weight called by this name, weighing about 23. 16 grains: see raktikā &c. 3. A kettle drum. 4. A low murmuring sound. 5. A tavern. 6. Reflection, meditation. E. guji to sound, affix ka where the bees buz.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Shabda-Sagara Sanskrit-English Dictionary
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Sanskrit, also spelled संस्कृतम् (saṃskṛtam), is an ancient language of India commonly seen as the grandmother of the Indo-European language family. 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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Relevant definitions

Search found 84 related definition(s) that might help you understand this better. Below you will find the 15 most relevant articles:

Guñjakṛt (गुञ्जकृत्).—m. (-t) A large black bee. E. guñja a low tone, and kṛt who makes.
Mañjuguñja (मञ्जुगुञ्ज).—m. (-ñjaḥ) A charming murmur.
Raktaguñjā (रक्तगुञ्जा) or simply Guñjā is one of the two varieties of Guñjā, a medicinal plant...
Śvetaguñjā (श्वेतगुञ्जा) is one of the two varieties of Guñjā, a medicinal plant identified wit...
Ardhaguñjā (अर्धगुञ्जा).—half a gunja. Ardhaguñjā is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the term...
guñjā़ṭa (गुंजा़ट).—n A knot or knob on wood. a Knotted.
Māsa (मास) refers to “black gram”, which is given to the priest in the Prājāpatya ceremony, acc...
Rakta (रक्त).—mfn. (-ktaḥ-ktā-ktaṃ) 1. Dyed, tinged, coloured, stained. 2. Red, of a red colour...
Aruṇa (अरुण).—n. of a nāga king (note the nāga priest Aruṇa Āṭa in PBr, see BR s.v. 2 g): Māy 2...
1) Pala (पल) refers to a unit of time-measurement, consisting of 6 niśvāsas (respirations), acc...
Raktikā (रक्तिका).—f. (-kā) 1. A plant, (Abrus precatorious.) 2. The seed of the Abrus precator...
Vala (वल).—[, so Lefm with most mss., and Calc. bala, in LV 429.22 (prose)-nagnavalānupradāna-,...
Droṇa (द्रोण).—(°-), valley (so Sanskrit droṇī), implied in droṇa- mukha, q.v.; BR state that v...
Mana (मन).—n. (-naṃ) Indian spikenard. E. man to respect, aff. ac . “jaṭāmāṃsyām .”--- OR --- M...
Kārṣa (कार्ष).—m. (Sanskrit Gr.), plowman: Divy 463.8 (prose) (pañca) kārṣa-śatāny, probably er...

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