Kesava, Keshava, Keśava, Keśavā: 32 definitions


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

The Sanskrit terms Keśava and Keśavā can be transliterated into English as Kesava or Keshava, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).

Images (photo gallery)

In Hinduism

Vaishnavism (Vaishava dharma)

Source: humindian: 108 names of Lord Krishna

One of the 108 names of Krishna; Meaning: "One Who Has Long, Black Matted Locks"

Source: Pure Bhakti: Arcana-dipika - 3rd Edition

Keśava (केशव) refers to:—A name for kṛṣṇa that means ‘the slayer of the keśī demon’ or ‘one who has beautiful long hair’. (cf. Glossary page from Arcana-dīpikā).

Vaishnavism book cover
context information

Vaishnava (वैष्णव, vaiṣṇava) or vaishnavism (vaiṣṇavism) represents a tradition of Hinduism worshipping Vishnu as the supreme Lord. Similar to the Shaktism and Shaivism traditions, Vaishnavism also developed as an individual movement, famous for its exposition of the dashavatara (‘ten avatars of Vishnu’).

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Pancaratra (worship of Nārāyaṇa)

Source: Wisdom Library: Pāñcarātra

Keśava (केशव, “Having beatiful hair”):—One of the twenty-four forms of Viṣṇu through which Nārāyaṇa manifests himself. He is accompanied by a counterpart emanation of Lakṣmī (an aspect of Devī) who goes by the name Kīrti.

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

Keśava (केशव) is a name of Viṣṇu, as mentioned in the 9th century Hayaśīrṣa-pañcarātra (Ādikāṇḍa chapter 1).—“[...] Since you, who, having made homage to the horse-headed one, are a devotee of Keśava (i.e., Viṣṇu), you are worthy to hear the ancient Pañcarātra. [...]”.

Pancaratra book cover
context information

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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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

Source: Puranic Encyclopedia

Keśava (केशव).—See under Kṛṣṇa.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index

1a) Keśava (केशव).—Is Kṛṣṇa;1 a resident of Prayāga; to be prayed, when there is bad omen.2

  • 1) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 42. 19; 71. 221; IV. 34. 76; Matsya-purāṇa 16. 1; 17. 30; 22. 9; 69. 8; 150. 221; 178. 14 and 36; 187. 26; 245. 38.
  • 2) Matsya-purāṇa 243. 13.

1b) Same as Vibhrāja hill.*

  • * Matsya-purāṇa 122. 17-18.

1c) A tīrtha in Benares.*

  • * Matsya-purāṇa 185. 68.
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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Shilpashastra (iconography)

Source: Pratima Kosa Encyclopedia of Indian Iconography - Vol 6

Keśava (केशव) refers to one of the many varieties of the Śālagrāma (ammonite fossil stones).—The Keśava is blue coloured; two lines suggesting a rectangle. Śālagrāma stones are very ancient geological specimens, rendered rounded and smooth by water-currents in a great length of time. They (e.g., Keśava stones) are distinguished by the ammonite (śālā, described as “vajra-kīṭa”, “adamantine worms”) which having entered into them for residence, are fossilized in course of time, leaving discus-like marks inside the stone.

Source: Dvādaśa-mūrti in Tamil Tradition (iconography)

Keśava (केशव) refers to one of the Dvādaśa-mūrti or “twelve sacred names of Viṣṇu”, whose iconographical details are mentioned in the Śrītattvanidhi (verse 2.19-42) citing the Pāñcarātrāgama-Kriyapāda.—Keśava is Golden hued (svarṇa-varṇa), white garments (pītāmbara), benign face (śānta-vadana), and ornaments in pearls (muktābharaṇa). According to the Caturviṃśatimūrtilakṣaṇa, Keśava is fitted with the Śaṅkha, Cakra, Gāda and Padma in that particular order.

Shilpashastra book cover
context information

Shilpashastra (शिल्पशास्त्र, śilpaśāstra) represents the ancient Indian science (shastra) of creative arts (shilpa) such as sculpture, iconography and painting. Closely related to Vastushastra (architecture), they often share the same literature.

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Vyakarana (Sanskrit grammar)

Source: Wikisource: A dictionary of Sanskrit grammar

Keśava (केशव).—Writer of a commentary named प्रकाश (prakāśa) on the Śikṣā of Pāṇini. He lived in the 17th century.

Vyakarana book cover
context information

Vyakarana (व्याकरण, vyākaraṇa) refers to Sanskrit grammar and represents one of the six additional sciences (vedanga) to be studied along with the Vedas. Vyakarana concerns itself with the rules of Sanskrit grammar and linguistic analysis in order to establish the correct context of words and sentences.

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Chandas (prosody, study of Sanskrit metres)

Source: Shodhganga: a concise history of Sanskrit Chanda literature

Keśava (केशव) is the great grand-father of Harivyāsamiśra (C. 1574 C.E.): the composer of the text Vṛttamuktāvalī. Harivyāsa belongs to Ṣanāḍhya family and he was the son of Rāmacandra, grandson of Arjuna and great grandson of Keśava. His grandfather is described as a mine of good qualities, a great devotee of Viṣṇu and well adorned among scholars.

Chandas book cover
context information

Chandas (छन्दस्) refers to Sanskrit prosody and represents one of the six Vedangas (auxiliary disciplines belonging to the study of the Vedas). The science of prosody (chandas-shastra) focusses on the study of the poetic meters such as the commonly known twenty-six metres mentioned by Pingalas.

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Shaktism (Shakta philosophy)

Source: Google Books: Manthanabhairavatantram

Keśava (केशव) refers to one of the twenty-one spheres of the rūpa state, according to Tantric texts such as the Kubjikāmata-tantra, the earliest popular and most authoritative Tantra of the Kubjikā cult.—Chapter nineteen of the Kubjikāmatatantra begins with an exposition of the state called Form (rūpa). This is manifest in twenty-one spheres (cakra) [i.e., Keśava] of ‘millions’ (koṭi) of energies arranged along the axis of the head starting with the throat, up through the eyebrows and beyond. [...]

Shaktism book cover
context information

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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Ganitashastra (Mathematics and Algebra)

Source: Hindu Mathematics

Keśava (केशव) represents the number 9 (nine) in the “word-numeral system” (bhūtasaṃkhyā), which was used in Sanskrit texts dealing with astronomy, mathematics, metrics, as well as in the dates of inscriptions and manuscripts in ancient Indian literature.—A system of expressing numbers by means of words arranged as in the place-value notation was developed and perfected in India in the early centuries of the Christian era. In this system the numerals [e.g., 9—keśava] are expressed by names of things, beings or concepts, which, naturally or in accordance with the teaching of the Śāstras, connote numbers.

Ganitashastra book cover
context information

Ganitashastra (शिल्पशास्त्र, gaṇitaśāstra) refers to the ancient Indian science of mathematics, algebra, number theory, arithmetic, etc. Closely allied with astronomy, both were commonly taught and studied in universities, even since the 1st millennium BCE. Ganita-shastra also includes ritualistic math-books such as the Shulba-sutras.

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General definition (in Hinduism)

Source: WikiPedia: Hinduism

Kesava (केसव): One of the names of Sri Krishna.

In Buddhism

Theravada (major branch of Buddhism)

Source: Pali Kanon: Pali Proper Names

1. Kesava - An ascetic in Himava. His story is given in the Kesava Jataka. He is identified with Baka Brahma (J.iii.145; S.i.144; SA.i.165; MA.i.555). He is sometimes addressed as Kesi. E.g., J.iii.144, 362.

2. Kesava - An Ascetic, also called Narada. He saw the Buddha Atthadassi and paid him homage. He was a previous birth of Pavittha Thera, who is evidently identical with Ekadamsaniya. Ap.i.168; ThagA.i.185.

3. Kesava - Another name for Vasudeva (q.v.). It is said that he was so called on account of his beautiful hair (kesasobhanataya). J.iv.84; PvA.94.

context information

Theravāda is a major branch of Buddhism having the the Pali canon (tipitaka) as their canonical literature, which includes the vinaya-pitaka (monastic rules), the sutta-pitaka (Buddhist sermons) and the abhidhamma-pitaka (philosophy and psychology).

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Tibetan Buddhism (Vajrayana or tantric Buddhism)

Source: Wisdom Library: Tibetan Buddhism

Keśavā (केशवा) refers to one of the female Śrāvakas mentioned as attending the teachings in the 6th century Mañjuśrīmūlakalpa: one of the largest Kriyā Tantras devoted to Mañjuśrī (the Bodhisattva of wisdom) representing an encyclopedia of knowledge primarily concerned with ritualistic elements in Buddhism. The teachings in this text originate from Mañjuśrī and were taught to and by Buddha Śākyamuni in the presence of a large audience (including Keśavā).

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)

Source: Trisastisalakapurusacaritra

Keśava (केशव) is the son of Īśvaradatta and an incarnation of Śrīmatī and Svayamprabhā, according to chapter 1.1 [ādīśvara-caritra] of Hemacandra’s 11th century Triṣaṣṭiśalākāpuruṣacaritra: an ancient Sanskrit epic poem narrating the history and legends of sixty-three illustrious persons in Jainism.


“After he had enjoyed pleasures unceasingly, the soul of Vajrajaṅgha fell from the exhaustion of his life-span, just as a snow-ball melts in the sun. In Jambūdvīpa, in the Videhas, in the city Kṣitipratiṣṭhita, he was born as the son, named Jīvānanda, of the physician Suvidhi. [...] In the same city the soul of Śrīmatī too was born as the son Keśava of the merchant Īśvaradatta”.

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

Pali-English dictionary

Source: BuddhaSasana: Concise Pali-English Dictionary

kesava : (adj.) of rich of hair. (m.), the God Vishnu.

Source: Sutta: The Pali Text Society's Pali-English Dictionary

Kesava, (fr. last) of rich hair, of beautiful hair. Ep. of King Vāsudeva (cp. kaṇha) Pv. II, 62. (Page 227)

Pali book cover
context information

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

Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

kēśava (केशव).—m (S) A name of kṛṣṇa or viṣṇu.

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

Keśava (केशव).—a. [keśāḥ praśastāḥ santyasya; keśa-va P.V.2.19]

1) Having much, fine or luxuriant hair.

-vaḥ An epithet of Viṣṇu; केशव जय जगदीश हरे (keśava jaya jagadīśa hare) Gītagovinda 1; केशवं पतितं दृष्ट्वा पाण्डवा हर्षनिर्भराः (keśavaṃ patitaṃ dṛṣṭvā pāṇḍavā harṣanirbharāḥ) Subhās.

2) The Supreme Being.

3) The month of मार्गशीर्ष (mārgaśīrṣa).

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Edgerton Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Dictionary

Keśava (केशव).—name of a former incarnation of Śākyamuni: Rāṣṭrapālaparipṛcchā 24.6 (verse; he was a vaidyarāja).

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

Keśava (केशव).—mfn.

(-vaḥ-vā-vaṃ) Having much or handsome hair. m.

(-vaḥ) 1. A name of Krishna or Vishnu. 2. A plant, commonly Punnaga: see punnāga E. ka Brahma, and īśa Siva, va who goes, &c. from with ḍa affix; again keśa hair, va who possesses: fine-haired.

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

Keśava (केशव).—[keśa + va] (va for vant), m. 1. A name of Viṣṇu, [Rāmāyaṇa] 1, 45, 31. 2. A proper name, [Pañcatantra] iii. [distich] 270.

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

Keśava (केशव).—[adjective] having long hair; [masculine] [Epithet] of Viṣṇu-Kṛṣṇa.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Aufrecht Catalogus Catalogorum

1) Keśava (केशव) as mentioned in Aufrecht’s Catalogus Catalogorum:—See Keśavārka, Nāgarāja.

2) Keśava (केशव):—guru of Jayarāma (Pāraskaragṛhyabhāṣya). W. p. 64.

3) Keśava (केशव):—father of Ratneśvaramiśra, the latter of whom was guru of Mahīdhara (Śulbasūtravṛtti 1590). L. 753.

4) Keśava (केशव):—son of Viśvadhara, brother of Bhānu and Harinātha (Kāvyādarśamārjana). Oxf. 206^b.

5) Keśava (केशव):—father of Nṛhari, father of Kṛṣṇa of Kuṇḍina, father of Ānandavana (Ānandanidhi). W. p. 87.

6) Keśava (केशव):—father of Harsha, Rucikara and Govinda (Kāvyapradīpa). Oxf. 212^b. Hall. p. 206.

7) Keśava (केशव):—father of Brāhma, grandfather of Maheśvara (Viśvaprakāśa). Oxf. 187^b.

8) Keśava (केशव):—father of Vācaspati, grandfather of Lakṣmīdāsa (Gaṇitatattvacintāmaṇi 1501). W. p. 235. Cambr. 51.

9) Keśava (केशव):—father of Viśvapati (Prayogaśikhāmaṇi). Sb. 111.

10) Keśava (केशव):—father of Arjuna, grandfather of Harivyāsamiśra (Vṛttamuktāvalī 1574). W. p. 226.

11) Keśava (केशव):—poet. [Sūktikarṇāmṛta by Śrīdharadāsa]

12) Keśava (केशव):—a grammarian (Kaiśavī). Oudh. Ix, 6.

13) Keśava (केशव):—Kalpadru Nāmamālā, lexicon. Quoted by Mallinātha on Kirātārjunīya 9, 77 and on Raghuvaṃśa, by Dinakara and Hemādri on Raghuvaṃśa, by Bhaṭṭoji Oxf. 164^a.

14) Keśava (केशव):—Keśavārṇava [dharma] Lahore. 1882, 5.

15) Keśava (केशव):—Gotrapravaranirṇaya. K. 174. B. 3, 80.

16) Keśava (केशव):—Laghu Nighaṇṭusāra, glossary. B. 3, 40.

17) Keśava (केशव):—Nyāyataraṅgiṇī. L. 2328.

18) Keśava (केशव):—One of the compilers of the Vivādārṇavabhaṅga. Peters. 2, 53.

19) Keśava (केशव):—Sarvasammataśikṣā. Bp. 287.

20) Keśava (केशव):—son of Ananta, Laugākṣikula, of Puṇyastambha: Ānandavṛndāvanacampū. Np. X, 16. Nṛsiṃhacampū. Prahlādacampū, written by request of king Umāpati Dalapati. L. 1427.

21) Keśava (केशव):—son of Divākara, uncle of Nṛsiṃha (1584). Cambr. 42. 43: Jyotiṣamaṇimālā, composed in 1564. Bik. 305.

22) Keśava (केशव):—son of Harivaṃśa, pupil of Viṭṭhaleśvara: Rasikasaṃjīvanī alaṃk. Br. M. (Addit. 26, 359).

23) Keśava (केशव):—father of Vopadeva. read Siddhamantra.

24) Keśava (केशव):—son of Ananta, grandson of Keśava.

25) Keśava (केशव):—Antyeṣṭipaddhati.

26) Keśava (केशव):—Kāvyāmṛta.

27) Keśava (केशव):—Paddhatikalpavallī jy. Bhāsvatyudāharaṇa.

28) Keśava (केशव):—Viṣṇutattvanirṇayavivṛti.

29) Keśava (केशव):—son of Divākara (?) composed the Jyotiṣamaṇimālā in 1584.

30) Keśava (केशव):—son of Viśvanātha:
—[commentary] on the Mīmāṃsābālaprakāśa.

31) Keśava (केशव):—son of Someśvara: Kauśikagṛhyasūtrapaddhati.

32) Keśava (केशव):—Kroḍapattrarāja.

33) Keśava (केशव):—Nakṣatreṣṭiprayoga Āpast.

34) Keśava (केशव):—Nakṣatreṣṭiprayoga Baudh.

35) Keśava (केशव):—son of Ananta, of the Laugākṣigotra: Gaurīlāvaṇyalaharī.

36) Keśava (केशव):—son of Vāmana: Nyāyasiddhāntamañjarīvivṛti.

37) Keśava (केशव):—son of Harinātha: Jyotirmaṇimālā.

38) Keśava (केशव):—Nāmānuśāsana or Viśvakośa lexicon.

39) Keśava (केशव):—Paddhatiratnaṭīkā. A worthless entry.

40) Keśava (केशव):—Lagnakalāpradīpa jy.

41) Keśava (केशव):—son of Ananta, grandson of Keśava: Lāvaṇyalaharī kāvya.

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

1) Keśava (केशव):—[from keśa] a mfn. ([Pāṇini 5-2, 109]) having long or much or handsome hair, [Atharva-veda viii, 6, 23; Śatapatha-brāhmaṇa; Kātyāyana-śrauta-sūtra]

2) [v.s. ...] m. Name of Viṣṇu or Kṛṣṇa, [Mahābhārata; Harivaṃśa; Rāmāyaṇa] etc.

3) [v.s. ...] (hence) of the month Mārgaśīrṣa, [Varāha-mihira’s Bṛhat-saṃhitā cv, 14]

4) [v.s. ...] Rottleria tinctoria, [cf. Lexicographers, esp. such as amarasiṃha, halāyudha, hemacandra, etc.]

5) [v.s. ...] Name of the author of a lexicon called Kalpa-dru

6) [v.s. ...] of the author of the Dvaita-pariśiṣṭa

7) [v.s. ...] of the father of Govinda and Rucikara

8) [v.s. ...] of the father of Brāhma and uncle of Maheśvara

9) [v.s. ...] of the son of Viśva-dhara and brother of Kari-nātha

10) [v.s. ...] of the father of Vopa-deva.

11) b śi, etc. See 1. keśa.

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

Keśava (केशव):—(vaḥ) 1. m. A name of Krishna; punnag. a. Having much hair.

Source: DDSA: Paia-sadda-mahannavo; a comprehensive Prakrit Hindi dictionary (S)

Keśava (केशव) in the Sanskrit language is related to the Prakrit word: Kesava.

[Sanskrit to German]

Kesava 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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Prakrit-English dictionary

Source: DDSA: Paia-sadda-mahannavo; a comprehensive Prakrit Hindi dictionary

Kesava (केसव) in the Prakrit language is related to the Sanskrit word: Keśava.

context information

Prakrit is an ancient language closely associated with both Pali and Sanskrit. Jain literature is often composed in this language or sub-dialects, such as the Agamas and their commentaries which are written in Ardhamagadhi and Maharashtri Prakrit. The earliest extant texts can be dated to as early as the 4th century BCE although core portions might be older.

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Kannada-English dictionary

Source: Alar: Kannada-English corpus

Kēśava (ಕೇಶವ):—[adjective] having much or handsome hair.

--- OR ---

Kēśava (ಕೇಶವ):—[noun] Viṣṇu or Křṣṇa.

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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