Kubera, aka: Kuvera, Kuberā; 33 Definition(s)

Introduction

Kubera 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.

In Hinduism

Natyashastra (theatrics and dramaturgy)

Kuvera is one of the Deva-vibhāvana (hands that indicate the forms which accord with the character and actions of Brahmā and other Devas).—Kuvera: left hand–Padma, right hand–Gada.

Source: archive.org: The mirror of gesture (abhinaya-darpana)
Natyashastra book cover
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Natyashastra (नाट्यशास्त्र, nāṭyaśāstra) refers to both the ancient Indian tradition (śāstra) of performing arts, (nāṭya, e.g., theatrics, drama, dance, music), as well as the name of a Sanskrit work dealing with these subjects. It also teaches the rules for composing dramatic plays (nataka) and poetic works (kavya).

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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

Kubera in Purana glossary... « previous · [K] · next »

Kuvera (कुवेर):—Son of Ilavilā (daughter of Tṛṇabindu) and Viśravā. (see Bhāgavata Purāṇa 9.2.32)

Source: Wisdom Library: Bhagavata Purana

Kubera (कुबेर).—Genealogy. Descended from Viṣṇu thus: Brahmā—Pulastya—Viśravas—Kubera. (See full article at Story of Kubera from the Puranic encyclopaedia by Vettam Mani)

Source: archive.org: Puranic Encyclopaedia

Kubera (कुबेर) refers to a deity that was once worshipped in ancient Kashmir (Kaśmīra) according to the Nīlamatapurāṇa.—Kubera is the lord of the Yakṣas, he is known also by two other names Vaiśravaṇa and Dhanada, and is regarded as the giver of wealth. Six images of this god erected by various sages etc. have been mentioned. He is a friend of Śiva and the Nāga Nīla.

Source: archive.org: Nilamata Purana: a cultural and literary study

Kubera (कुबेर) is a name that Guṇanidhi obtained from Umā, as a result of his severe penance, as mentioned in the Śivapurāṇa 2.1.19. Accordingly, as Umā said to Guṇanidhi:—“[...] dear son, may your pure devotion to Śiva remain for ever. With your left eye burst you will be Ekapiṅga, (having a yellow mark in place of an eye). May all the boons granted to you by the lord fructify. You shall be called Kubera (lit. possessed of ill-shaped body), O son, since you jealously looked at me. After granting these boons to Kubera, lord Maheśvara, in the company of the Goddess Pārvatī, entered his Viśveśvara abode. Thus Kubera attained the friendship of Śiva. Very near his city Alakā was Kailāsa, the abode of Śiva”.

Note 1: Kubera is the son of Viśravas by Iḍaviḍā He is the chief of the Yakṣas and a friend of Rudra. He is mythologised as having three legs and eight teeth.

Note 2: Kubera or Kuvera is the God of wealth and the chief of the Yakṣas and Guhyakas. His name Ku-bera or Ku-vera signifies his deformed body having three legs and eight teeth. He is married to Yakṣī, the daughter of the Dānava Mura. As an especial friend of Śiva he is called Śiva-sakhā. His capital Alakā on the Himālaya mountain is mentioned also in the Ṛgveda.

Source: archive.org: Siva Purana - English Translation

1a) Kubera (कुबेर).—The son of Viśravas (Vaiśrāvaṇa) and Iḍaviḍā. His father initiated him into a great vidyā. Father of three sons—Viśāla and others. Lord of Yakṣas, and brother of Śiva;1 was pleased with Dhruva and blessed him though he killed his followers.2 Presented a golden throne to Pṛthu.3 With his naravāhana attacked Kṛṣṇa taking Pārijāta, but defeated by Satyabhāmā, retreated in fear. Presented to Kṛṣṇa eight treasures and his new city.4 Attended by Guhyakas, he is compared to Yudhiṣṭhira attended by Pāṇḍavas, Kṛṣṇa and sages.5 Lord of Alaka and son of Pulastya and resident of Kailāsa;6 vanquished by Rāvaṇa; wife Ṛddhi and son Nalakūbera.7 Man as his riding animal: followed by Yakṣas and Rākṣasas with respective standards—ulūka and gṛdhra; fought with Jambha and Kujambha and was overwhelmed; fled to Indra helpless; beaten by Tāraka.8 By residing in Benares, attained the status of a Gaṇeśa;9 observed the ādityaśayanavṛata;10 penance at the confluence of the Narmadā and the Kāverī and was blessed by Śiva to be the Lord of Yakṣas;11 icon of;12 defended the chariot of Tripurāri.13

  • 1) Bhāgavata-purāṇa IX. 2. 32-33; IV. 1. 37; 11. 33. Vāyu-purāṇa 40. 8; 47. 1; 70. 38. 97. 2.
  • 2) Bhāgavata-purāṇa IV. 12. 1-9.
  • 3) Ib. 15. 14.
  • 4) Ib. X. [65 (V) 45], [66 (V) 4-21]; 50. 56.
  • 5) Ib. I. 9. 3.
  • 6) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 18. 1-2; 35. 94; 36. 218; Matsya-purāṇa 121. 2-3; 137. 32; Vāyu-purāṇa 69. 196.
  • 7) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 7. 254 and 331; 8. 44; 72. 2; IV. 15. 22; Vāyu-purāṇa 70. 41.
  • 8) Matsya-purāṇa 148. 84; 150. 50-108; 153. 179.
  • 9) Matsya-purāṇa 180. 62.
  • 10) Ib. 47. 30; 55. 32.
  • 11) Ib. 189. 4-11; 191. 85.
  • 12) Ib. 261. 20-2.
  • 13) Ib. 133. 63; 138. 25; 140. 41.

1b) (Dhanada): the guardian of the north;1 presents of, at Umā's marriage;2 in the army of deva's at Tārakāmaya; riding animal of, man;3 Harikeśa got this status at Benares; became annada and kṣetrapāla; Udbhrama and Sambhrama, two Gaṇas in his service.4

  • 1) Matsya-purāṇa 67. 15; Viṣṇu-purāṇa V. 36. 12.
  • 2) Matsya-purāṇa 154. 489.
  • 3) Matsya-purāṇa 174. 17-18.
  • 4) Matsya-purāṇa 180. 94-99.

1c) (c)—a Janapada of the Ketumāla.*

  • * Vāyu-purāṇa 44. 14.
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index

Kubera (कुबेर) is a name mentioned in the Mahābhārata (cf. XIV.8) and represents one of the many proper names used for people and places. Note: The Mahābhārata (mentioning Kubera) is a Sanskrit epic poem consisting of 100,000 ślokas (metrical verses) and is over 2000 years old.

Kubera is also mentioned in the Mahābhārata (cf. III.87.3) and represents one of the many proper names used for people and places.

Source: JatLand: List of Mahabharata people and places
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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Shaivism (Shaiva philosophy)

Kuberā (कुबेरा):—Seventh of the eight Mātṛs born from the body of Khecarī, according to the Kubjikāmatatantra. These eight sub-manifestations (mātṛ), including Kuberā, represent the eight directions of the compass (from east to north-east) and are presided over by the Bhairava Saṃvarta and his consort Rudrāṇī. Khecarī is the first of the Eight Mahāmātṛs, residing within the Mātṛcakra (third of the five cakras) and represents the element ether or space.

Source: Wisdom Library: Kubjikāmata-tantra

Kubera (कुबेर) or Kuberāgama refers to one of upāgamas (supplementary scriptures) of the Vijayāgama which is one of the twenty-eight Siddhāntāgama: a classification of the Śaiva division of Śaivāgamas. The Śaivāgamas represent the wisdom that has come down from lord Śiva, received by Pārvatī and accepted by Viṣṇu. The purpose of revealing upāgamas (eg., Kubera Āgama) is to explain more elaborately than that of mūlāgamas (eg., Vijaya-āgama) and to include any new idea if not dealt in mūlāgamas.

Source: Shodhganga: Iconographical representations of Śiva
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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Vastushastra (architecture)

Kubera (कुबेर) refers to a type of temple (prāsāda) classified under the group named Vairāja, according to Samarāṅgaṇasūtradhāra chapter 49. The Vairāja group contains twenty-four out of a sixty-four total prāsādas (temples) classified under five prime vimānas (aerial car/palace), which were created by Brahmā for as many gods (including himself). The group represents temples (eg. Kubera) that are to be square shaped. The prāsādas, or ‘temples’, represent the dwelling place of God and are to be built in towns. The Samarāṅgaṇasūtradhāra is an 11th-century encyclopedia dealing with various topics from the Vāstuśāstra.

Source: Wisdom Library: Vāstu-śāstra
Vastushastra book cover
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Vastushastra (वास्तुशास्त्र, vāstuśāstra) refers to the ancient Indian science (shastra) of architecture (vastu), dealing with topics such architecture, sculpture, town-building, fort building and various other constructions. Vastu also deals with the philosophy of the architectural relation with the cosmic universe.

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Kavya (poetry)

Kubera in Kavya glossary... « previous · [K] · next »

Kubera (कुबेर) is the name of an important person (viz., an Ācārya or Kavi) mentioned in Rājaśekhara’s 10th-century Kāvyamīmāṃsā.—In the Kāvyamīmāṃsā of Rājaśekhara says as one of the eighteen disciple of Kāvya-puruṣa. There Rājaśekhara established him as the founder of śabda and alaṃkāra, who created an adhikaraṇa on ubhayālaṃkāra.

Source: Shodhganga: The Kavyamimamsa of Rajasekhara
context information

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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Shilpashastra (iconography)

Kubera (कुबेर) or Yakṣapatī is one of the Aṣṭadikpālaka (“eight guardians of the directions”), as defined according to texts dealing with śilpa (arts and crafs), known as śilpaśāstras.—In dance, when the right hand of the dancer assumes arāla-hasta and the left hand of the dancer assumes ardhapatāka-hasta, it is vāyu-hasta. If the dancer holds padma-hasta in the left hand and gadā-hasta in the right hand, it is the hasta for Yakṣapatī (Lord of Yakṣas is Kubera). In images, Yakṣapatī is found with a sword in the right hand and a shield in the left hand. In this case, there is dissimilarity in the relevance of the postures of the hands in dancing and iconography.

Source: Shodhganga: The significance of the mūla-beras (śilpa)
Shilpashastra book cover
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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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General definition (in Hinduism)

Kubera (कुबेर, “monstrous”):—In Vedic hinduism, he is the regent of the northern direction and represents the God of wealth; he presides over all earthly treasures. He is the chief of the Yakṣās who guard these precious stones and metals. He is also the protector of travelers.

He is depicted as a white dwarf with a large belly. He has three legs which represent the three principle desires:

  1. putreṣa (‘desire for offspring’)
  2. vitteṣa (‘desire for wealth and power’)
  3. and lokaiṣa (‘desire for fame and recognition’).

His wife is Bhadrā and their two sons and daughter are Nalakubera, Maṇigrīva and Mīnākṣī.

In the Viṣṇudharmottara-purāṇa, Kubera is described as the embodiment of both Artha (“wealth, prosperity, glory”) and Arthashastras, the treatises related to it—and his iconography mirrors it. Kubera’s complexion is described as that of lotus leaves. He rides a man—the state personified, adorned in golden clothes and ornaments, symbolizing his wealth. His left eye is yellow. He wears an armour and a necklace down to his large belly.

Source: Wisdom Library: Hinduism

Kubera is the king of Yakshas and is the wealthiest person in the universe.

Source: Apam Napat: Indian Mythology

Kubera (कुबेर): One of the gods of wealth and riches.

Source: WikiPedia: Hinduism

Kuvera (कुवेर).—One of the important demigods in heaven, and the treasurer of wealth. He benedicted the Pāṇḍavas during their exile in the forest; father of Nalakūvara and Maṇigrīva.

Source: ISKCON Press: Glossary

In Buddhism

Theravada (major branch of Buddhism)

See Kuvera.

Source: Pali Kanon: Pali Proper Names

Kuvera (Kubera) was King of Uttarakuru. His royal residence is Alakamanda and his citadel Visana. (See Vessavana.)

Kuvera’s messengers are:

  1. Tatola,
  2. Tattola,
  3. Tatotala,
  4. Ojasi,
  5. Tejasi,
  6. Tatojasi,
  7. Sura,
  8. Raja,
  9. Arittha
  10. and Nemi.

His lotus lake is called Dharani. His sons are all called Inda (D.iii.201f). He rules over the northern clime and is lord of the Yakkhas, with a splendid retinue (D.ii.257). He is a follower of the Buddha (SN.v.379).

Kuvera was once a brahmin called Kuvera and owned a sugar cane farm, where he worked seven mills. The produce of one mill he gave in charity, and when his profits increased he gave alms for twenty thousand years. After death he was born as one of the Catummakarajika devas (DA.iii.966; SNA.i.369f).

In literature the name Kuvera signifies the god of wealth, and his city, Alakamanda, is said to embody all prosperity (E.g., Cv.xxxvii.106; xxxix.5; lxxx.5). He had nine treasures (Cv.lxxxvii.31; see Hopkins Epic Mythology, 142f). The Yakkha Punnaka calls himself the minister of Kuvera (J.vi.307, 325). Kuvera is mentioned in a list of those who reached heaven through generosity (J.vi.201).

Source: Pali Kanon: Pali Proper Names
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)

Kubera (कुबेर).—Protector deity of the northern cremation ground.—Synonyms for Kubera are Dhanada (Saṃvarodayatantra 17.39), Yakṣādhipa (Guhyasamayasādhanamālā 34) or Vaiśravaṇa (Gyatso). Kubera is the custodian of wealth, and king of the yakṣas. Iconographically in the Śmaśānavidhi, Kubera has a human mount (naravāhana), is yellow, and holds a “mongoose spitting out a jewel” and skull bowl. In the Adbhutaśmaśānālaṃkāra he is yellow, mounted on a nidhi and holds a club (left) and makes the gesture of threatening (right).

Source: Google Books: Vajrayogini

Kubera (कुबेर) is the name of the protector (dikpati) associated with Gahvara: the northern cremation ground (śmaśāna) according to the Vajravārāhī-sādhana by Umāpatideva as found in te 12th century Guhyasamayasādhanamālā. As a part of this sādhana, the practicioner is to visualize a suitable dwelling place for the goddess inside the circle of protection which takes the form of eight cremation grounds.

These protectors (eg., Kubera) are variously known as dikpati, dikpāla and lokāpala and can be traced to purāṇic legends where eight protectors are assigned to each direction by Brahmā. According to the Śmaśānavidhi verse 20, these protectors are in union with their wives and have four arms, two of which make the añjali gesture of obeisance, while the second pair usually holds a skull bowl and a tantric weapon. They are variously depicted upon their respective mounts, or sitting at the base of the tree.

Source: Wisdomlib Libary: Vajrayogini

Kubera (कुबेर) refers to one of the eight direction-guardians (dikpāla) of the Guṇacakra, according to the 10th century Ḍākārṇava chapter 15. Accordingly, the guṇacakra refers to one of the four divisions of the sahaja-puṭa (‘innate layer’), situated within the padma (lotus) in the middle of the Herukamaṇḍala. Kubera is associated with the charnel grounds (śmaśāna) named Gahvara; with the tree (vṛkṣa) named Aśvattha; with the serpent king (nāgendra) named Takṣaka and with the cloud king (meghendra) named Ghūrṇita.

Source: academia.edu: The Structure and Meanings of the Heruka Maṇḍala
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)

Kubera (कुबेर) refers to the first of the “four world protectors” (caturlokapāla) as defined in the Dharma-saṃgraha (section 7). The Dharma-samgraha (Dharmasangraha) is an extensive glossary of Buddhist technical terms in Sanskrit (eg., caturlokapāla and Kubera). The work is attributed to Nagarguna who lived around the 2nd century A.D.

Kubera is, besides one of the “four world protectors” (caturlokapāla), also one of the “eight world protectors” (aṣṭalokapāla), one of the “ten world protectors” (daśalokapāla) and one of the “fourteen world protectors” (caturdaśalokapāla).

Source: Wisdom Library: Dharma-samgraha

In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

Kubera (कुबेर).—One of the four types of Veśmadevas;—Worship of Kubera in a home is said to bring eternal prosperity.

Source: Google Books: Jaina Iconography

Kūvera (कूवेर) participated in the war between Rāma and Rāvaṇa, on the side of the latter, as mentioned in Svayambhūdeva’s Paumacariu (Padmacarita, Paumacariya or Rāmāyaṇapurāṇa) chapter 57ff. Svayambhū or Svayambhūdeva (8th or 9th century) was a Jain householder who probably lived in Karnataka. His work recounts the popular Rāma story as known from the older work Rāmāyaṇa (written by Vālmīki). Various chapters [mentioning Kūvera] are dedicated to the humongous battle whose armies (known as akṣauhiṇīs) consisted of millions of soldiers, horses and elephants, etc.

Source: archive.org: Een Kritische Studie Van Svayambhūdeva’s Paümacariu

1) Kubera ( कुबेर) is the name of the Yakṣa accompanying Mallinātha: the nineteenth of twenty-four Tīrthaṃkaras or Jinas, commonly depicted in Jaina iconography.—The Jaina books point out to us the emblem of a water-jar distinguishing Mallinātha sharply from his predecessors as well as his successors. His special attendant goblins or technically Śāsana-devatās are known as Kubera and Dharaṇapriyā (Digambara: Aparājitā). Rājā Suluma stands by his side as a Chowri-beaver. The Kevala tree in his case goes by the name of Aśoka.

2) Kuvera (कुवेर) or Vaiśravaṇa, the king of the Yakṣas, who was the treasurer of Śiva and lord of the Alakā is several times referred to in early Hindu literature. His attendants were many and several of them are mentioned in a canonical text of the Jainas thus, Pūrṇabhadra, Maṇibhadra, Śālibhadra, Sumanabhadra, Lakṣarakṣa, Pūrṇarakṣa, Śravaṇa, Sarvayaśas, Sarvakāma, Samṛddha, Amogha, Asmata.

Source: archive.org: The Jaina Iconography
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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

Kubera in Pali glossary... « previous · [K] · next »

kuvera : (m.) name of the deity who governs the North; the king of Yakkhas.

Source: BuddhaSasana: Concise Pali-English Dictionary
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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Marathi-English dictionary

kubēra (कुबेर).—m (S) The name of the treasurer of the gods, the Indian Plutus. Hence, appellatively, a rich man, a Crœsus. kubērācēṃ dhana mārkaṇḍēyācēṃ āyuṣya (asāvēṃ) A phrase expressive of the Hindu opinion concerning English law.

Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

kubēra (कुबेर).—m The god of wealth. A rich man, a Crœsus.

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

Kubera (कुबेर).—[kutsitaṃ be (ve) raṃ śarīraṃ yasya saḥ]

1) The god of riches and treasure and the regent of the northern quarter; कुबेरगुप्तां दिशमुष्णरश्मौ गन्तुं प्रवृत्ते समयं विलङ्घ्य (kuberaguptāṃ diśamuṣṇaraśmau gantuṃ pravṛtte samayaṃ vilaṅghya) Ku.3.25 (vide Malli. thereon). [Kubera is the son of Viśravas by Iḍāviḍā, and thus the half brother of Rāvaṇa. Besides, being the lord of riches and regent of the north, he is the king of the Yakṣas and Kinnaras, and a friend of Rudra. His abode is Kailāsa. He is represented as being deformed in body-having three legs, only eight teeth, and a yellow mark in place of one eye.]

2) Name of a tree.

Derivable forms: kuberaḥ (कुबेरः).

See also (synonyms): kuvera.

--- OR ---

Kubera (कुबेर).—a.

1) Bad.

2) Bad-limbed.

See also (synonyms): kuvera.

 

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Kubera (कुबेर).—as one of the four mahārāja(n), see this.

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

Kuvera (कुवेर).—as one of the four mahārāja(n), see this.

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

Kubera (कुबेर).—m.

(-raḥ) The deity Kuvera: see kuvera.

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

Kuvera (कुवेर).—mfn.

(-raḥ-rā-raṃ) 1. Deformed, monstrous. 2. Slow, lazy m.

(-raḥ) Kuvera the son of Visravas by Iravira, the chief of the Yakshas, god of wealth and regent of the north. E. ku vile, and vera body, alluding to the deformity of the god. who is represented as having three legs and but eight teeth. 2. The Tun tree: see nandivṛkṣa 3. One of the attendants of a Jaina saint. E. As above, or kuvi to cover, &c. and erac Unadi affix; in this case the word may be read kubera.

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

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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