Mardana: 12 definitions


Mardana means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit, 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

Rasashastra (chemistry and alchemy)

Source: Wisdom Library: Rasa-śāstra

Mardana (मर्दन):—Second of the eighteen Saṃskāra (special purification process). They are used to purify rasa (mercury) as per Rasaśāstra literature (Medicinal Alchemy), and are mentioned in texts such as the Rasaprakāśasudhākara. In Āyurveda, Saṃskāra refers to the “detoxification” process of metals and herbs. The Mardana-saṃskāra is commonly used for Dravya-karma and Rasāyana-karma, but also to remove various types of rasa-doṣa (mercury impurities). In other words: the first eight saṃskāras are sequentially used to purify and detoxify mercury in preparation for internal use. Mardana refers to the process of ‘grinding’, or trituration of steamed mercury in a mortar, together with plant and acidic substances.

Source: Google Books: The Alchemical Body

Mardana is the “rubbing,” “grinding,” or “trituration” of steamed mercury in a mortar, together with plant and acidic substances.

Source: History of Indian Science Technology (rasashastra)

Mardana (मर्दन, “grinding”) refers to the second of eighteen alchemical purification processes of mercury (mahārasa, rasendra or pārada). A religio-philosophic base was given to mercury-based alchemy in India. Mercury was looked upon as the essence of God Śiva, and sulphur as that of Goddess Pārvatī.

Mercury had to undergo 18 processes (eg., mardana) before it could be used for transforming either metals or the human body. A combination of male and female principles (i.e. mercury and sulphur) forming cinnabar or mercuric sulphide or even of mercury and mica, was supposed to be highly potent and was therefore consumed as a Rasāyana or medicine for increasing body fluids or vitality. The earliest mention of Rasāyana was found in Āyurveda which was probably composed by 8th or 9th century BC, since it was a part of Atharvaveda, the last of the four Vedas.

Source: CCRAS: Ayurvedic pharmacopoeia of India, Appendix I

Mardana (मर्दन):—The second of the eight purification steps of Pārada (mercury), also known as the Aṣṭasaṃskāra.—Take the ingredients numbered [i] to [vii] in to Khalva-yantra add with required amounts of Kāñji and levigate for three days. Remove Pārada and kalka, wash carefully with warm water and collect Pārada. (see the Rasahṛdayatantra 2.4: a 10th-century Sanskrit alchemical treatise by Govinda Bhagavatpāda).


  1. Pārada [Mercury] (1 part),
  2. Guḍa (1/16th part),
  3. Dagdhorṇa (1/16th part),
  4. Lavaṇa [Saindhava-lavaṇa] (1/16th part),
  5. Mandira-dhūma (1/16th part),
  6. Iṣṭika-cūrṇa (1/16th part),
  7. Āsurī [Rājikā] (1/16th part),
  8. Kāñjika (Quantum satis).
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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Kavya (poetry)

[«previous (M) next»] — Mardana in Kavya glossary
Source: Wisdom Library: Kathāsaritsāgara

Mardana (मर्दन) is the name of a Vidyādhara who fought on Śrutaśarman’s side in the war against Sūryaprabha, according to the Kathāsaritsāgara, chapter 48. Accordingly: “... when Śrutaśarman saw that, he quickly sent other ten lords of the Vidyādharas, chiefs of lords of hosts or lords of hosts of warriors,... and Mardana [and seven others], the eight similar sons of the Vasus born in the house of Makaranda”.

The story of Mardana was narrated by the Vidyādhara king Vajraprabha to prince Naravāhanadatta in order to relate how “Sūryaprabha, being a man, obtain of old time the sovereignty over the Vidyādharas”.

The Kathāsaritsāgara (‘ocean of streams of story’), mentioning Mardana, 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.

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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Languages of India and abroad

Marathi-English dictionary

Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

mardana (मर्दन).—n (S) Rubbing. 2 An operation in general to soften or relax, or to reduce to dust or powder; as pressing and squeezing, treading and trampling, kneading, crushing, pounding, grinding &c. &c.: also (in poetry passim) slaughtering, massacring, drubbing, pommeling, rough handling. mardanaṃ guṇavardhanaṃ (Sanskrit adage.) Bruising and pounding exalts or improves the virtues (of drugs &c.) 2 Flogging brightens the faculties.

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

mardana (मर्दन).—n Rubbing; slaughtering.

--- OR ---

mardānā (मर्दाना).—a Bold, intrepid.

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

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Mardana (मर्दन).—a. (- f.) [मृद्-ल्यु ल्युट् वा (mṛd-lyu lyuṭ vā)] Crushing, grinding, destroying, tormenting, rubbing, &c.; सलक्ष्मणं राघवमाजि- मर्दनम् (salakṣmaṇaṃ rāghavamāji- mardanam) Rām.5.37.67.

-nam 1 Crushing, grinding.

2) Rubbing, shampooing; मदर्नं गुणवर्धनम् (madarnaṃ guṇavardhanam).

3) Anointing (with unguents &c.).

4) Pressing, kneading.

5) Paining, tormenting, afflicting.

6) Destroying.

7) Devastating, laying waste.

8) Opposition of planets.

9) Breaking up (as of ice &c.).

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

Mardana (मर्दन).—name of a yakṣa: Mahā-Māyūrī 14; in Mahā-Māyūrī 24 perhaps name of a place (or of a yakṣa? Lévi, p. 69).

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

Mardana (मर्दन).—i. e. mṛd + ana, n. 1. Rubbing, [Pañcatantra] 238, 7. 2. Touching, [Śṛṅgāratilaks] 14. 3. Grinding, [Hitopadeśa] iii. [distich] 76.

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

Mardana (मर्दन).—[feminine] ī crushing, grinding, rubbing, pressing, afflicting, destroying (gen or —°); [neuter] the action of crushing etc., also anointing with (°—).

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

1) Mardana (मर्दन):—[from marda] mf(ī)n. crushing, grinding, rubbing, bruising, paining, tormenting, ruining, destroying, [Mahābhārata; Kāvya literature] etc. (cf. candrārka-, samaraand samiti-m)

2) [v.s. ...] Name of a king of the Vidyā-dharas

3) [from marda] n. the act of crushing or grinding or destroying, [Kāvya literature; Kathāsaritsāgara; Bhāgavata-purāṇa]

4) [v.s. ...] rubbing, anointing, [Kāvya literature; Pañcatantra] etc. (-śālā f., [Siṃhāsana-dvātriṃśikā or vikramāditya-caritra, jaina recension]), cleaning or combing (the hair; See keśa-m)

5) [v.s. ...] friction id est. opposition (of planets; See graha-m).

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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