Mrityu, aka: Mṛtyu; 13 Definition(s)


Mrityu 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 term Mṛtyu can be transliterated into English as Mrtyu or Mrityu, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).

In Hinduism

Natyashastra (theatrics and dramaturgy)

Mṛtyu (मृत्यु) is the Sanskrit name for a deity to be worshipped during raṅgapūjā, according to the Nāṭyaśāstra 3.1-8. Accordingly, the master of the dramatic art who has been initiated for the purpose shall consecrate the playhouse after he has made obeisance (eg., to Mṛtyu).

Source: Wisdom Library: Nāṭya-śāstra
Natyashastra book cover
context information

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).

Discover the meaning of mrityu or mrtyu in the context of Natyashastra from relevant books on Exotic India

Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

Mrityu in Purana glossary... « previous · [M] · next »

Mṛtyu (मृत्यु) 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 (eg., Mṛtyu) 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: Wisdom Library: The Matsya-purāṇa

Mṛtyu (मृत्यु).—The goddess of Death. Agni Purāṇa gives details about the birth of Death. Hiṃsā was the wife of Adharma. They got a son named Anṛta and a daughter named Nikṛti. From them were born Bhaya, Naraka, Māyā and Vedanā. Of these Māyā gave birth to Mṛtyu, the destroyer of matter.

Mṛtyu has been described both as a god and goddess in Mahābhārata. The statements regarding Mṛtyu as a deva are as follows:—

(i) Three sons were born to Nikṛti, wife of Adharma. One of them was Mṛtyu. Mṛtyudeva has neither wife nor children because he is the destroyer of all. (Śloka 54, Chapter 66, Ādi Parva).

(ii) Once the son of an old Gautamī was bitten by a snake. A hunter seeing it rushed to kill the serpent but Gautamī objected to it. She advised him that it was a sin to injure any living being. The serpent then said, "It is not my fault that I bit the boy. I was persuaded by the god of death to do so." The god of death Mṛtyudeva also appeared there then. He confirmed the snake’s statement and added that God had programmed all events beforehand and the boy’s death was not due to any mistake on anybody’s part. (Śloka 50, Chapter 1, Anuśāsana Parva)

(iii) Once Mṛtyu followed the King Sudarśana, but Mṛtyudeva had to withdraw after accepting defeat because the King had been living a virtuous life of high standard. (See under Sudarśana).

The statements regarding Mṛtyu as a goddess are the following:

This devatā was born from the body of Brahmā in the shape of a woman. (Śloka 17, Chapter 53, Droṇa Parva).

Brahmā gave the work of destruction to Mṛtyu. When she got that work she wept aloud. (Śloka 21. Chapter 257, Śānti Parva).

The goddess of Mṛtyu once did severe penance. (Śloka 17, Chapter 54, Droṇa Parva).

Brahmā assured the goddess of death that any destruction by her would not be deemed as a sin. (Śloka 44, Chapter 54, Droṇa Parva).

The terrible strength of Mṛtyudevatā is described in Chapter 819, Śānti Parva, Mahābhārata.

Source: Puranic Encyclopaedia

1a) Mṛtyu (मृत्यु).—Her origin: a daughter of Kali: aṃśa of adharma her attributes.*

  • * Bhāgavata-purāṇa I. 16. 8; II. 10. 28; IV. 8. 4; 13. 39; VII. 12. 27.

1b) The sixth Vyāsa in the sixth dvāpara: avatār of the Lord Lokākṣi; father of Sunīthā, given to Anga;1 Heard the Purāṇa from the Sun god and narrated it to Indra.2

  • 1) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 35. 118; 36. 127; Vāyu-purāṇa 23. 133; Viṣṇu-purāṇa III. 3. 12.
  • 2) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa IV. 4. 60; Viṣṇu-purāṇa I. 13. 11; Vāyu-purāṇa 103. 60.

1c) A Kalā of Rudra.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa IV. 35. 96.

1d) One of the eleven Rudras born of Surabhī and Kaśyapa.*

  • * Vāyu-purāṇa 66. 70; Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 3. 71.

1e) The originator of Bhairava clan of Apsarasas.*

  • * Va. 69. 57; Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 7. 24.

1f) The son of Māyā and Bhaya: father of Vyādhi, Jarā, Śoka, Krodha, and Asūya; all giving pain and having the characteristics of adharma and having no wives or sons; belong to the Tāmasa sarga.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 9. 65-66; Vāyu-purāṇa 10. 40-2.

1g) The Lord of Death; born out of the eyes of Brahmā;1 had an ugly daughter Sunīthā married to AngaPrajāpati;2 an assistant to Yama.3

  • 1) Matsya-purāṇa 3. 11; 213. 4.
  • 2) Ib. 10. 3.
  • 3) Ib. 213. 18.

1h) A mind-born mother.*

  • * Matsya-purāṇa 179. 15.
Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index

Mṛtyu (मृत्यु) is a name mentioned in the Mahābhārata (cf. IX.44.15) and represents one of the many proper names used for people and places. Note: The Mahābhārata (mentioning Mṛtyu) is a Sanskrit epic poem consisting of 100,000 ślokas (metrical verses) and is over 2000 years old.

Mṛtyu is also mentioned in the Mahābhārata (cf. I.60.53) and represents one of the many proper names used for people and places.

Source: JatLand: List of Mahabharata people and places
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.

Discover the meaning of mrityu or mrtyu in the context of Purana from relevant books on Exotic India

General definition (in Hinduism)

1) Mṛtyu (मृत्यु, “death”):—One of the epiteths of Yama, the vedic God of death, who is the embodiment of Dharma. Yama rules over the kingdom of the dead and binds humankind according to the fruits of their karma.

2) Mṛtyu (मृत्यु, “death”):—In Vedic hinduism, he is one of the three sons of Adharma (‘sin’) and his wife Nirṛti (‘misery’).

Source: Wisdom Library: Hinduism

Mṛtyu (मृत्यु, ‘death’) is repeatedly mentioned in the Rigveda1 and later2 as a thing of terror. There are a hundred and one forms of death, the natural one by old age (jarā), and a hundred others, all to be avoided. To die before old age (purā jarasciḥ) is to die before the allotted span (purā āyuṣaḥ), the normal length of life being throughout Vedic literature spoken of as a hundred years.

Source: Vedic index of Names and Subjects

In Buddhism

General definition (in Buddhism)

Mṛtyu (मृत्यु) or Mṛtyumāra refers to “death as destroyer” and represents one of the “four destroyers” (māra) as defined in the Dharma-saṃgraha (section 80). The Dharma-samgraha (Dharmasangraha) is an extensive glossary of Buddhist technical terms in Sanskrit (eg., mṛtyu). The work is attributed to Nagarguna who lived around the 2nd century A.D.

Source: Wisdom Library: Dharma-samgraha

In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

Mṛtyu (मृत्यु) 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 Mṛtyu] are dedicated to the humongous battle whose armies (known as akṣauhiṇīs) consisted of millions of soldiers, horses and elephants, etc.

Source: Een Kritische Studie Van Svayambhūdeva’s Paümacariu
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.

Discover the meaning of mrityu or mrtyu in the context of General definition from relevant books on Exotic India

Languages of India and abroad

Marathi-English dictionary

mṛtyu (मृत्यु).—m (S) Death. 2 Yama or Pluto, the Judge of the dead. mṛtyu pāvaṇēṃ To die.

Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

mṛtyu (मृत्यु).—m Death. Yama or Pluto. mṛtyu pāvaṇēṃ Die.

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.

Discover the meaning of mrityu or mrtyu in the context of Marathi from relevant books on Exotic India

Sanskrit-English dictionary

Mṛtyu (मृत्यु).—[mṛ tyuk]

1) Death, decease; जातस्य हि ध्रुवो मृत्युर्ध्रुवं जन्म मृतस्य च (jātasya hi dhruvo mṛtyurdhruvaṃ janma mṛtasya ca) Bg.2.27; मृत्योः स मृत्युमाप्नोति य इह नानेव पश्यति (mṛtyoḥ sa mṛtyumāpnoti ya iha nāneva paśyati).

2) Yama, the god of death.

3) An epithet of Brahman.

4) Of Viṣṇu.

5) Of Māyā.

6) Of Kali.

7) The god of love.

8) The worldly life (saṃsāra); (namo) अनात्मने स्वात्मविभक्तमृत्यवे (anātmane svātmavibhaktamṛtyave) Bhāg.1.86.48.

9) Name of the 8th astrological house.

1) The deity taking away life in the body; यान्येतानि देवत्रा क्षत्राणीन्द्रो वरुणः सोमो रुद्रः पर्जन्यो यमो मृत्युरीशान इति (yānyetāni devatrā kṣatrāṇīndro varuṇaḥ somo rudraḥ parjanyo yamo mṛtyurīśāna iti) Bri. Up.1.4.11; यमं कालं च मृत्युं च-स्वर्गं संपूज्य चार्हतः (yamaṃ kālaṃ ca mṛtyuṃ ca-svargaṃ saṃpūjya cārhataḥ) Mb.12.2.3.

11) = अशनाया (aśanāyā) q. v.; Bri. Up.1.2.1.

Derivable forms: mṛtyuḥ (मृत्युः).

Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Mṛtyu (मृत्यु).—mfn. Subst. (-tyuḥ-tyuḥ-tyu) Death, dying. m.

(-tyuḥ) Yama, the judge of the dead. E. mṛ to die, Unadi aff. tyuk .

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.

Discover the meaning of mrityu or mrtyu in the context of Sanskrit from relevant books on Exotic India

Relevant definitions

Search found 97 related definition(s) that might help you understand this better. Below you will find the 15 most relevant articles:

Mṛtyuvañcana (मृत्युवञ्चन) or Mṛtyuvañcanatārā refers to a deity from the White Tārā family, ac...
Mahāmṛtyu (महामृत्यु).—m. (-tyuḥ) Siva. E. mahā great, mṛtyu death.
Mṛtyuphala (मृत्युफल).—n. (-laṃ) A sort of fruit considered as poisonous. f. (-lā or -lī) The p...
Mṛtyunāśaka (मृत्युनाशक).—m. (-kaḥ) Quicksilver. E. mṛtyu death, nāśaka destroyer, remover.
Paramṛtyu (परमृत्यु).—m. (-tyuḥ) A crow. E. para another, and mṛtyu death; having many enemies.
Mṛtyumāra (मृत्युमार).—(= Pali Maccu-), a form of Māra, q.v.
Mṛtyubhṛtya (मृत्युभृत्य).—m. (-tyaḥ) Sickness, malady, disease. E. mṛtyu death, bhṛtya servant...
Mṛtyuvīja (मृत्युवीज).—m. (-jaḥ) The bamboo. E. mṛtyu death, and vīja seed.
Mṛtyunāśana (मृत्युनाशन) or Mṛtyunāśanāgama refers to one of upāgamas (supplementary scriptures...
Mṛtyutūrya (मृत्युतूर्य) or Mṛtyutūryya.—n. (-ryaṃ) The drum beaten at funerals.
Mṛtyusūti (मृत्युसूति).—f. (-tiḥ) A female crab. E. mṛtya death, and sūti bearing.
Mṛtyupuṣpa (मृत्युपुष्प).—1) the sugarcane. 2) the bamboo. Derivable forms: mṛtyupuṣpaḥ (मृत्यु...
Śikhimṛtyu (शिखिमृत्यु).—the god of love (madana); Gīrvāṇa. Derivable forms: śikhimṛtyuḥ (शिखिम...
Mṛtyubīja (मृत्युबीज).—a bamboo-cane. Derivable forms: mṛtyubījaḥ (मृत्युबीजः).Mṛtyubīja is a S...
Mṛtyuphalī (मृत्युफली).—the plantain. Mṛtyuphalī is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms...

Relevant text

Like what you read? Consider supporting this website: