Kamarupa, Kāmarūpa, Kāmarūpā, Kama-rupa: 33 definitions


Kamarupa means something in Buddhism, Pali, Hinduism, Sanskrit, 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

Shaivism (Shaiva philosophy)

Source: Wisdom Library: Kubjikāmata-tantra

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप):—The name of one of the pīthas of the Mātṛcakra, according to the Kubjikāmatatantra. The presiding goddess is Mahocchuṣma (one of the four female attendant deities of Mitra, the central deity).

Source: archive.org: Personal and geographical names in the Gupta inscriptions (shaivism)

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप).—According to the Yoginī Tantra, the kingdom of Kāmarūpa included the whole of the Brahmaputra valley together with Rangpur and Cochbihar.

Source: SOAS University of London: Protective Rites in the Netra Tantra

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप) refers to the “form of Kāma”, according to the Netratantra of Kṣemarāja: a Śaiva text from the 9th century in which Śiva (Bhairava) teaches Pārvatī topics such as metaphysics, cosmology, and soteriology.—Accordingly, [verse 19.101cd-105ab, while describing the ritual that protect the king and his kingdom]—“Thus says Lord Siva, The Mantrin should worship Amṛteśa on all special occasions [and] on special dates in the form of Kāma (kāmarūpa) [i.e., any deity that one wishes or is called for by a particular festival]. [He] shall always attain what he desires. He should worship [Amṛteśa] in the form of Indra in order to achieve the protection of the population, to assure [an abundance of] grains of rice, for the sake of protection in respect to wives and offspring, for the prosperity of his kingdom and for royal victory”.

Shaivism book cover
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Shaiva (शैव, śaiva) or Shaivism (śaivism) represents a tradition of Hinduism worshiping Shiva as the supreme being. Closely related to Shaktism, Shaiva literature includes a range of scriptures, including Tantras, while the root of this tradition may be traced back to the ancient Vedas.

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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

[«previous next»] — Kamarupa in Purana glossary
Source: Wisdom Library: The Matsya-purāṇa

Kāmarūpā (कामरूपा) is the name of a mind-born ‘divine mother’ (mātṛ), created for the purpose of drinking the blood of the Andhaka demons, according to the Matsya-purāṇa 179.8. The Andhaka demons spawned out of every drop of blood spilled from the original Andhakāsura (Andhaka-demon). According to the Matsya-purāṇa 179.35, “Most terrible they (e.g., Kāmarūpā) all drank the blood of those Andhakas and become exceedingly satiated.”

The Matsyapurāṇa is categorised as a Mahāpurāṇa, and was originally composed of 20,000 metrical verses, dating from the 1st-millennium BCE. The narrator is Matsya, one of the ten major avatars of Viṣṇu.

Source: archive.org: Personal and geographical names in the Gupta inscriptions (purana)

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप).—The Purāṇas mention Prāgjyotiṣa, identified with Kāmākhyā or Gauhati, as the capital of Kāmarūpa.

Source: archive.org: Shiva Purana - English Translation

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप) is the name of an ancient kingdom identified with Assam, according to the Śivapurāṇa 2.3.24 (“Śiva consents to marry Pārvatī”).—Accordingly, as Śiva said to Viṣṇu: “[...] The vow of the king of Assam (Kāmarūpa) [i.e., kāmarūpa-adhipa] was made fruitful. I saved king Sudakṣiṇā who had become a hireling and a prisoner. I am the three-eyed God who bestows happiness but brought about the misery of Gautama. I especially curse those wicked persons who harass my devotees. I have the feelings of endearment towards devotees. I drank up poison for the welfare of the gods. O gods, the miseries of the gods have always been removed by me. [...]”.

Note: Kāmarūpa was also known as Prāgjyotiṣa. The designation applies to the country now called Assam. In ancient days it comprised the north-eastern part of Bengal and the western portion of Assam.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index

1) Kāmarūpa (कामरूप).—(c)—the eastern country; sacred to Lalitā.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa IV. 44. 93; Viṣṇu-purāṇa II. 3. 15.

2) Kāmarūpā (कामरूपा).—A mindborn mother.*

  • * Matsya-purāṇa 179. 21.
Purana book cover
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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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Kavya (poetry)

[«previous next»] — Kamarupa in Kavya glossary
Source: Wisdom Library: Kathāsaritsāgara

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप) is the name of a kingdom that was conquered by Udayana (king of Vatsa) during his campaign to obtain sovereignty over the whole earth, according to the Kathāsaritsāgara, chapter 19. Accordingly, “It is not strange that then the King of Kāmarūpa, bending before him with head deprived of the umbrella, was without shade and also without brightness. Then that sovereign returned, followed by elephants presented by the King of Kāmarūpa, resembling moving rocks made over to him by the mountains by way of tribute”.

The Kathāsaritsāgara (‘ocean of streams of story’), mentioning Kāmarūpa, is a famous Sanskrit epic story revolving around prince Naravāhanadatta and his quest to become the emperor of the vidyādharas (celestial beings). The work is said to have been an adaptation of Guṇāḍhya’s Bṛhatkathā consisting of 100,000 verses, which in turn is part of a larger work containing 700,000 verses.

Source: Shodhganga: The Kavyamimamsa of Rajasekhara

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप) is the name a locality mentioned in Rājaśekhara’s 10th-century Kāvyamīmāṃsā.—One of the district of Assam. In the Kāvyamīmāṃsā, Rājaśekhara mentions Kāmarūpa as one of the mountains situated in the eastern part of India but not as a Janapada. In the Raghuvaṃśa of Kālidāsa (IV. 83-84) described Prāgjyotiṣapura was the capital of Kāmrūpa. It may be possible that, Kāmarūpa parvata represents the Nīla hill or Nīlakutaparvata where the temple of the celebrated Kāmākhya Devi is situated.

Kavya book cover
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Kavya (काव्य, kavya) refers to Sanskrit poetry, a popular ancient Indian tradition of literature. There have been many Sanskrit poets over the ages, hailing from ancient India and beyond. This topic includes mahakavya, or ‘epic poetry’ and natya, or ‘dramatic poetry’.

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Pancaratra (worship of Nārāyaṇa)

Source: eScholarship: Chapters 1-14 of the Hayasirsa Pancaratra

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप) is the name of an ancient region (corresponding to modern Assam), being born from there represents an undesirable characteristic of an Ācārya, according to the 9th-century Hayaśīrṣa-pañcarātra Ādikāṇḍa chapter 3.—The Lord said:—“I will tell you about the Sthāpakas endowed with perverse qualities. He should not construct a temple with those who are avoided in this Tantra. [...] Nor originating in Kāmarūpa or Kaliṅga, or Kāñcī, Kāśmīra or Kośala, nor one having bad behavior, bad company or come from Mahārāṣṭra. [...] A god enshrined by any of these named above (viz., kāmarūpa), is in no manner a giver of fruit. If a building for Viṣṇu is made anywhere by these excluded types (viz., kāmarūpa) then that temple will not give rise to enjoyment and liberation and will yield no reward, of this there is no doubt”.

Pancaratra book cover
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Pancaratra (पाञ्चरात्र, pāñcarātra) represents a tradition of Hinduism where Narayana is revered and worshipped. Closeley related to Vaishnavism, the Pancaratra literature includes various Agamas and tantras incorporating many Vaishnava philosophies.

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Shaktism (Shakta philosophy)

Source: Google Books: The Kubjikāmatatantra: Kulālikāmnāya Version

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप) refers to one of the Mahāpīṭhas where Devī becomes incarnate, according to the Kubjikāmata-tantra.—After her stay on the Kaumāraparvata, Devī visits several localities e.g., Mount Trikūṭa, Mount Kiṣkindha etc., untill she reaches the Western Himagahvara. This locality and the three following—Karāla, Sahya Mahāvana, Ucchuṣmā Nadī—are identified with the four Mahāpīṭhas: Oḍḍiyāna, Jālandhara, Pūrṇagiri and Kāmarūpa. In these four places, Devī becomes incarnate as a protective goddess and future mother of many sons and daughters; a number of servants also appears at each of the four localities. During her stay in the fourth Mahāpīṭha Devī explains the fifth which is called Mātaṅga. In contradistinction to the other Pīṭhas it has no fixed location on earth, but seems to be located above Kāmarūpa. As such it is the place of origin of the entire world. [...] After her visit to the fourth Mahāpīṭha, the goddess proceeds to various other places; [...]

Source: Google Books: Manthanabhairavatantram

1) Kāmarūpa (कामरूप) (also, Kāmikā) refers to a Mahāpīṭha (main sacred seat) and one of the ten places visited by the Goddess on her pilgrimage, according to Tantric texts such as the Kubjikāmata-tantra, the earliest popular and most authoritative Tantra of the Kubjikā cult.—Accordingly, “She [i.e., the Goddess—Kubjikā] quickly went (to the place) where the auspicious river Ucchuṣmā (flows). It is in the Mahocchuṣma forest and transports the Divine and Mortal Currents (of the transmission). The goddess, endowed with the attributes of the divine Command, sports there where the lakes Mahocchuṣma and Nīla (are located). [...]”.

Note: The original name of this place, known to both early Hindu and Buddhist sources, is Kāmaru. The Sanskritized form ‘Kāmarūpa’ is easily derivable from it. This place is of great importance for the early Śākta, that is, Kaula Tantras and the strongly Śākta orientated Bhairava Tantras. This is largely because of its association with Matsyendranātha, the reputed originator of the Kaula teachings and therefore, by extension, all the Kaula Tantric traditions, including those of Kubjikā, Tripurā and Kālī. The many Kaula traditions that link this site with such an important figure and its persistent identification with Kāmākhya (modern Gauhati) in Assam lend credibility to the correctness of this identification.

2) Kāmarūpa (कामरूप) (also Kāmākhya) refers to Kāmarūpapīṭha: one of the Pīṭhas (“sacred seats”) where the god unites with the goddess according to the Ambāmatasaṃhitā.—Accordingly, “[...] Then he (i.e., Siddhanātha) became (a god with a) divine body and went along with the goddess to the very holy (mahāpuṇya) place (where they were to enjoy love) games. Adorned with the sea and other (such beautiful sites) and possessing seven districts (viṣaya), it was called the venerable Kāmākhya. It is the venerable (land of) Kāmarūpa where (the god of) Love (Kāma) himself resides and is supremely beautiful. Thus, (my) descent (into the world) takes place there in (that) land along with you. [...]”.

3) Kāmarūpa (कामरूप) is located in the foremost portion above manonmanī (‘mind beyond mind’), according to the Ṣaṭsāhasrasaṃhitā, an expansion of the Kubjikāmatatantra: the earliest popular and most authoritative Tantra of the Kubjikā cult.—Accordingly, “(Kāmarūpa) is the Neuter (absolute) within the qualities. It has emerged as the pervasion (of consciousness) and, in front of the middle seat, is located on the peak in front. (Pleasing and delicate) like a lotus petal, it is radiant (with energy) and grey in colour. It shakes with mighty and fierce currents (of energy) engaged in striking against (it) and rocking (it) all around as it dries up (the entire) universe. [...] [Kāmarūpa’s] city is fashioned all around with pillars of sapphire. [...]  Thus, it is located in the foremost portion, above Mind Beyond Mind [i.e., manonmanī-ūrdhvasaṃsthita]. [...]”.

Source: Kamakoti Mandali: The Yoginis of Narasimha Vyuha

Kāmarūpā (कामरूपा) is the name of a Mātṛkā-Śakti created by Mahārudra in order to control the plague of demons created by Andhakāsura.—Accordingly, Andhaka-Asura tried to kidnap Umā (Devī Pārvatī), and was fiercely attacked by Mahārudra who shot arrows at him from his mahāpināka. when the arrows pierced the body of Andhakāsura, drops of blood fell to earth and from those drops, thousands of Andhakas arose. To control this plague of demons, Mahārudra created Mātṛkā-Śaktis [viz., Kāmarūpā] and ordered them to drink the blood of the demons and drain them dry.

Source: Kamakoti Mandali: Nrisimha matrika-mandala

Kāmarūpā (कामरूपा) refers to one of the various Mātṛkā-Śaktis created by Rudra in order to destroy the clones that spawned from Andhaka’s body.—Accordingly, [...] Andhakāsura attempted to abduct Girājanandinī (Pārvatī) and thus ensued a fierce battle between Andhakāsura and the great Rudra, the Lord of Umā. Like raktabīja, every drop of blood that fell from the body of Andhaka created another Asura like him and in no time, the entire world was filled with Andhakas. To destroy the growing number of Andhakas, Rudra created innumerable Mātṛkā-Śaktis [viz., Kāmarūpā]. These Śaktis of immense power at once began to drink every drop of blood that flowed from the body of Andhaka, but they could still not effectively contain the emergence of more and more demons.

Shaktism book cover
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Shakta (शाक्त, śākta) or Shaktism (śāktism) represents a tradition of Hinduism where the Goddess (Devi) is revered and worshipped. Shakta literature includes a range of scriptures, including various Agamas and Tantras, although its roots may be traced back to the Vedas.

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General definition (in Hinduism)

Source: archive.org: Indian Historical Quarterly Vol. 7

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप) is the name of a country classified as Kādi (a type of Tantrik division), according to the 13th century Sammoha-tantra (fol. 7).—There are ample evidences to prove that the zone of heterodox Tantras went far beyond the natural limits of India. [...] The zones in the Sammoha-tantra [viz., Kāmarūpa] are here fixed according to two different Tantrik modes, known as Kādi and Hādi.

In Buddhism

Tibetan Buddhism (Vajrayana or tantric Buddhism)

Source: Wisdomlib Libary: Vajrayogini

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप) is the name of a sacred site (pīṭha) presided over by Airāvatī, according to the vārāhyabhyudaya-maṇḍala. Airāvatī is a deity situated in one of the six petals of the northern lotus, of which the presiding deity is kuleśvarī (presiding lady) named Locanā. The central deity of the vārāhyabhyudaya-maṇḍala is the twelve-armed Vajravarāhī.

Kāmarūpa is one of the twenty-four pīṭhas, or ‘sacred-site’ (six lotuses each having six petals), each corresponding with a part of the human body. Kāmarūpa is to be contemplated as situated in the armpits. Besides being associated with a bodily spot, each pīṭha represents an actual place of ancient India frequented particularly by advanced tantric practitioners

Source: academia.edu: A Critical Study of the Vajraḍākamahātantrarāja (II)

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप) is one of the two Kṣetras (‘sacred spot’) present within the Vākcakra (‘circle of word’) which is associated with the Ḍākinī named Bhūcarī (‘a woman going on the ground’), according to the 9th-centruy Vajraḍākatantra. Vākcakra is one of three Cakras within the Tricakra system which embodies twenty-four sacred spots or districts (viz., Kāmarūpa) resided over by twenty-four ‘sacred girls’ (ḍākinīs) whose husbands abide in one’s body in the form of twenty-four ingredients (dhātu) of one’s body.

Kāmarūpa has the presiding Ḍākinī named Airāvatī whose husband, or hero (vīra) is named Aṅkulika. The associated internal location are the ‘arm-pits’ and the bodily ingredients (dhātu) are the ‘eyes’. According to the Vajraḍākavivṛti, the districts Lampāka, Saurāṣṭra, Oḍra and Kāmarūpa are associated with the family deity of Mohanī; while in the Abhidhānottarottaratantra there is the Ḍāka deity named Ratnaḍāka standing in the center of the districts named Kāmarūpa, Triśakuni, Oḍra and Kosala.

Source: MDPI Books: The Ocean of Heroes

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप) is the name of Kṣetra (category of holy sites), according to the 10th-century Ḍākārṇava-tantra: one of the last Tibetan Tantric scriptures belonging to the Buddhist Saṃvara tradition consisting of 51 chapters.—Accordingly: “Now, [the Blessed One] has taught [holy sites] such as the kṣetra and upakṣetra in sequence. [...] (3) Kāmarūpa, Oḍra, Triśakuna (for Triśakuni), and Kauśala are the kṣetra [sites]. (4) The upakṣetra [sites] are Kaliṅga, Lampāka, Kāñcī, and Himālaya. [...] Girls who are in these places are of [the nature of] the innate, born in their own birthplaces. [...]”.

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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General definition (in Buddhism)

Source: archive.org: Personal and geographical names in the Gupta inscriptions (buddhism)

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप).—The Buddhist Chronicle Ārya-mañjuśrī-mūlakalpa describes Kāmarūpa as a country of the east.

India history and geography

Source: archive.org: Personal and geographical names in the Gupta inscriptions

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप) is a place-name without suffix and is mentioned in the Gupta inscription No. 1. The Gupta empire (r. 3rd-century CE), founded by Śrī Gupta, covered much of ancient India and embraced the Dharmic religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. Kāmarūpa has been mentioned as one of the frontier states which were subordinate to Samudragupta and whose emperors paid him taxes and all kinds of obeisance. Majumdar identifies it with Upper Assam.

Kāmarūpa consisted of the Western districts of the Brahmaputra valley which being the most powerful state and being the first to be approached from the western side came to denote the whole valley. The area of Kāmarūpa was estimated by the Chinese traveller Hiuen Tsang to have been 10,000 li i.e. 1667 miles in circuit which shows that it must have comprised the whole valley of Brahmaputra.

Śaktisaṅgama describes Kāmarūpa as extending from Kāleśvara to the Śvetagiri and from Tripura to the Nīla-parvata (which is the Nilādri or Nīlakūṭa, the name of the Kāmākhyā hill). The Kamauli grant of Vaidyadeva mentions Kāmarūpa as a Maṇḍala of the Prāgjyotiṣa-bhukti. Chatterji remarks that the tribes living on the frontiers of Kāmarūpa were akin to the Man tribes of South-Western China, a wild Tibeto-Chinese people.

Source: What is India: Inscriptions of the Early Gupta Kings

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप).—Kāmarūpa seems to have comprised the western half of Assam and parts of the northern districts of Bengal so as to make it contiguous with Puṇḍravardhana, Samataṭa and Tāmraliptī provinces.

India history book cover
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The history of India traces the identification of countries, villages, towns and other regions of India, as well as mythology, zoology, 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

Marathi-English dictionary

Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

kāmarūpa (कामरूप).—n (S) An appearance or a form assumed at will.

--- OR ---

kāmarūpa (कामरूप) [or कामरूपी, kāmarūpī].—a (S) Possessing the power of assuming any shape at will. 2 Pleasing, beautiful, lovely.

Source: DDSA: The Aryabhusan school dictionary, Marathi-English

kāmarūpa (कामरूप) [-pī, -पी].—a Pleasing, beautiful. Posses- sing the power of assuming any shape at will.

context information

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 dictionary

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप).—a.

1) taking any form at will; जानामि त्वां प्रकृतिपुरुषं कामरूपं मघोनः (jānāmi tvāṃ prakṛtipuruṣaṃ kāmarūpaṃ maghonaḥ) Meghadūta 6.

2) beautiful, pleasing.

-pāḥ (pl.) a district lying in the east of Bengal (the western portion of Assam); तमीशः कामरूपाणाम् (tamīśaḥ kāmarūpāṇām) R.4.83,84.

Kāmarūpa is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms kāma and rūpa (रूप).

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

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप).—mfn.

(-paḥ-pī-paṃ) 1. Pleasing, beautiful. 2. Taking any or every shape at will. m.

(-paḥ) A district lying east of Bengal, the western portion of Asam. E. kāma desire, and rūpa form or figure.

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

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप).—I. n. a shape changing as one lists, Mahābhārata 1, 6077. Ii. adj., f. , taking any or every shape at will, [Meghadūta, (ed. Gildemeister.)] 6. Iii. m. sing. and pl. the name of a country, [Raghuvaṃśa, (ed. Stenzler.)] 4, 83. Kiṃrūpa, i. e.

Kāmarūpa is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms kāma and rūpa (रूप).

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

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप).—1. [neuter] a shape changing at will.

--- OR ---

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप).—2. [adjective] taking any shape at will.

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

1) Kāmarūpa (कामरूप):—[=kāma-rūpa] [from kāma] n. a shape assumed at will

2) [v.s. ...] mfn. assuming any shape at will, protean, [Mahābhārata; Rāmāyaṇa; Meghadūta]

3) [v.s. ...] m. a god, [cf. Lexicographers, esp. such as amarasiṃha, halāyudha, hemacandra, etc.]

4) [v.s. ...] m. [plural] Name of a people and of their country (east of Bengal and in the west part of Assam), [Raghuvaṃśa; Kathāsaritsāgara] etc.

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

Kāmarūpa (कामरूप):—[kāma-rūpa] (paḥ) 1. m. A district lying East of Bengal, part of Asam. a. Pleasing, taking any form.

[Sanskrit to German]

Kamarupa 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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Pali-English dictionary

[«previous next»] — Kamarupa in Pali glossary
Source: Sutta: The Pali Text Society's Pali-English Dictionary

Kāmarūpa refers to: a form assumed at will VvA. 80, or a form which enjoys the pleasures of heaven Vbh. 426;

Note: kāmarūpa is a Pali compound consisting of the words kāma and rūpa.

Pali book cover
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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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Kannada-English dictionary

Source: Alar: Kannada-English corpus

Kāmarūpa (ಕಾಮರೂಪ):—

1) [noun] a man who can take any form at will.

2) [noun] a magical attainment with the help of which one can take any form at will.

3) [noun] a district in the current Assam state in north-eastern India.

4) [noun] the form or beauty of of Kāma, the Love-God.

5) [noun] a very handsome man.

6) [noun] one of the varieties of classical dane in India.

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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