Nishada, Niṣāda, Nisāda, Nisada, Nisha-ada: 25 definitions


Nishada means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit, Buddhism, Pali, 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 Niṣāda can be transliterated into English as Nisada or Nishada, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).

In Hinduism

Dharmashastra (religious law)

Source: Wisdom Library: Dharma-śāstra

Niṣāda (निषाद) is a Sanskrit word referring to a particular mixed caste. The word is used throughout Dharmaśāstra literature such as the Manusmṛti. (also see the Manubhāṣya verse 4.215)

Source: Google Books: Manusmṛti with the Manubhāṣya

Niṣāda (निषाद).—According to Nārada 12.103-113.—“The son called Niṣāda springs from the union of a Kṣatriya with a Śūdra woman. A Śūdra woman obtains from a Brāhmaṇa a son called Pāraśava, who is superior to the Niṣāda”.

Dharmashastra book cover
context information

Dharmashastra (धर्मशास्त्र, dharmaśāstra) contains the instructions (shastra) regarding religious conduct of livelihood (dharma), ceremonies, jurisprudence (study of law) and more. It is categorized as smriti, an important and authoritative selection of books dealing with the Hindu lifestyle.

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Natyashastra (theatrics and dramaturgy)

Source: Wisdom Library: Nāṭya-śāstra

Niṣāda (निषाद) refers to the seventh of the seven “musical notes” (svara), according to the Nāṭyaśāstra chapter 6, chapter 19 and chapter 28. These seven notes are part of the ‘vocal representation’ (vācika), which is used in communicating the meaning of the drama and calling forth the sentiment (rasa). The seven notes (svara) are to be used in different sentiments (rasa). For example, gāndhāra and niṣāda are to be used in the pathetic (karuṇa) sentiment.

The presiding deity of the niṣāda musical note (svara) is defined by various sources:

Nāradīyā-śīkṣā 1.5.13-14 mentions that the niṣāda note is sung by Tumburu.
Bṛhaddeśī 75-76 mentions Bhānudeva as the presiding deity of niṣāda.
Saṅgītaratnākara 1.3.57-58 mentions Sahasrāṃśu (the sun, lit: ‘thousand-rayed’) as the presiding deity of niṣāda.
Saṃgītamakaranda 1.1.38, Idem.
Cf. Saṃgītarāja

The following animal sounds are associated with this note:

Nāradīyā-śīkṣā 1.5.3 assigns this note to the elephant (kuñjara).
Bṛhaddeśī 64, p13, 2.1-5 assigns this note to the elephant (gaja).
Saṃgītamakaranda 1.1.13, Idem.
Saṅgītaratnākara, Idem.
Cf. Saṃgītarāja

Natyashastra book cover
context information

Natyashastra (नाट्यशास्त्र, nāṭyaśāstra) refers to both the ancient Indian tradition (shastra) of performing arts, (natya—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), construction and performance of Theater, and Poetic works (kavya).

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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

Source: Puranic Encyclopedia

1) Niṣāda (निषाद).—A forest dweller. The grand sire of the niṣāda tribe living in forests was one Niṣāda. Those forestdwellers came to be known as niṣādas as they were the descendants of this Niṣāda. The Purāṇic story about the origin of Niṣāda is as follows:—

Once upon a time there lived a King called Vena. A very immoral ruler, he was hated by the people. As dharma declined in the country due to the misrule of Vena the maharṣis killed him with darbha grass sanctified by mantras. Then the maharṣis saw dust rising up everywhere and people told them that the poor people, in the absence of king, had turned into thieves and the dust was formed by the onrush of the thieves. To remedy the problem thus created the maharṣis churned the thigh of Vena, who had died childless, for a son, and from the thigh was born a male child, dark in colour, dwarfish and with a compressed face. Sadly he asked the brahmins (maharṣis) what he should do. They asked him to sit (niṣīda) and hence he became Niṣāda (forest-dweller). His descendants settled down on mount Vindhya and they by their sinful lives divested Vena of his sins. Vena was absolved of his sins through the Niṣādas, and thus the Niṣādas became responsible for the ending of Vena’s sins. (Viṣṇu Purāṇa, Part 1, Chapter 13).

2) Niṣāda (निषाद).—A particular region in ancient India. (Bhīṣma Parva, Chapter 9, Verse 51).

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index

1a) Niṣāda (निषाद).—The black and dwarfish man who came out of the churning of the thigh of the dead Vena by the sages; the ancestor of the Naiṣadas, the Vindhyan tribe.*

  • * Bhāgavata-purāṇa IV. 14. 45-46; Viṣṇu-purāṇa I. 13. 35-6.

1b) A son of Vasudeva; the first bowman;1 hunter.2

  • 1) Vāyu-purāṇa 96. 184, 187.
  • 2) Ib. 47. 51.

1c) 20th kalpa; Prajāpati Niṣāda performed austerities controlling the senses for a thousand divine years; seeing the son getting wearied by penance Brahmā said: “refrain from it,” hence the name, Niṣāda. Out of him came niṣādavānsvara.*

  • * Vāyu-purāṇa 21. 43.
Source: JatLand: List of Mahabharata people and places

Niṣāda (निषाद) is a name mentioned in the Mahābhārata (cf. I.28, I.61.48) and represents one of the many proper names used for people and places. Note: The Mahābhārata (mentioning Niṣāda) is a Sanskrit epic poem consisting of 100,000 ślokas (metrical verses) and is over 2000 years old.

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: Illustrations of Indian Music and Dance in Western Indian Style

Niṣāda (निषाद).—Illustration of the niṣāda-svara according to 15th century art.—The colour of the body of niṣāda-svara is variegated. His mouth is like an elephant and has four hands. He holds a lotus flower in his upper right hand and Bījapūraka (citron) in his left hand and Paraśu in his lower right hand and a trident in the left hand. His vehicle is a elephant. The colour of his scarf is green with a black design and the colour of his lower garment is rosy with the design of the same colour.

The illustrations (of, for example Niṣāda) are found scattered throughout ancient Jain manuscripts from Gujarat. The descriptions of these illustrations of this citrāvalī are based on the ślokas of Vācanācārya Gaṇi Sudhākalaśa’s Saṅgītopaniṣatsāroddhāra (14th century) and Śārṅgadeva’s Saṅgītaratnākara (13th century).

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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Arthashastra (politics and welfare)

Source: Google Books: King, Governance, and Law in Ancient India: Kautilya's Arthasastra

Niṣāda (निषाद) or Pāraśava is the son of a Brāhmaṇa from a Śūdra woman according to the Arthaśāstra 3.7.21, but here the term may indicate a son from a lower-class woman, or simply a bastard (so Meyer). The meaning appears to be that the king can use such a son or a son the traitorous official has fathered on his female servant using the same technique as in the case of his brother.

Arthashastra book cover
context information

Arthashastra (अर्थशास्त्र, arthaśāstra) literature concerns itself with the teachings (shastra) of economic prosperity (artha) statecraft, politics and military tactics. The term arthashastra refers to both the name of these scientific teachings, as well as the name of a Sanskrit work included in such literature. This book was written (3rd century BCE) by by Kautilya, who flourished in the 4th century BCE.

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Jyotisha (astronomy and astrology)

Source: Wisdom Library: Brihat Samhita by Varahamihira

Niṣāda (निषाद) or Niṣādarāṣṭra refers to a country belonging to “Āgneyī (south-eastern division)” classified under the constellations of Āśleṣā, Maghā and Pūrvaphālguni, according to the system of Kūrmavibhāga, according to the Bṛhatsaṃhitā (chapter 14), an encyclopedic Sanskrit work written by Varāhamihira mainly focusing on the science of ancient Indian astronomy astronomy (Jyotiṣa).—Accordingly, “The countries of the Earth beginning from the centre of Bhāratavarṣa and going round the east, south-east, south, etc., are divided into 9 divisions corresponding to the 27 lunar asterisms at the rate of 3 for each division and beginning from Kṛttikā. The constellations of Āśleṣā, Maghā and Pūrvaphālguni represent the south-eastern division consisting of [i.e., Niṣāda] [...]”.

Jyotisha book cover
context information

Jyotisha (ज्योतिष, jyotiṣa or jyotish) refers to ‘astronomy’ or “Vedic astrology” and represents the fifth of the six Vedangas (additional sciences to be studied along with the Vedas). Jyotisha concerns itself with the study and prediction of the movements of celestial bodies, in order to calculate the auspicious time for rituals and ceremonies.

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Gitashastra (science of music)

Source: Shodhganga: Elements of Art and Architecture in the Trtiyakhanda of the Visnudharmottarapurana (gita)

Niṣāda (निषाद) refers to one of the Seven svaras (“notes of music”), according to the Viṣṇudharmottarapurāṇa, an ancient Sanskrit text which (being encyclopedic in nature) deals with a variety of cultural topics such as arts, architecture, music, grammar and astronomy.—The sound which has the quality of satisfying nature to please the listeners’ minds and also has śrutis immediately before it is called a svara. In the Viṣṇudharmottarapurāṇa and the Saṃgītaratnākara, seven kinds of svara [e.g., niṣāda] are accepted. [...] It is seen that when two separate musical sounds occur at one time and both are gradually rising in one pitch following a particular direction, those sounds can be called as svaras.

context information

Gitashastra (गीतशास्त्र, gītaśāstra) refers to the ancient Indian science of Music (gita or samgita), which is traditionally divided in Vocal music, Instrumental music and Dance (under the jurisdiction of music). The different elements and technical terms are explained in a wide range of (often Sanskrit) literature.

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Languages of India and abroad

Pali-English dictionary

[«previous next»] — Nishada in Pali glossary
Source: BuddhaSasana: Concise Pali-English Dictionary

nisada : (m.) a grindstone.

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

Nisada, & Nisadā (f.) (Sk. dṛṣad f.; for n: d cp. P. nijjuha= Sk. dātyūha etc. ) a grindstone, esp. the understone of a millstone Vin. I, 201; (°pota id.); Miln. 149; Vism. 252 (°pota, where KhA at id. p. reads °putta). Cp. ā°. (Page 373)

— or —

Nisāda, (cp. Sk. niṣāda, a Non-Aryan or barbarian) a robber J. IV, 364. Cp. nesāda. (Page 373)

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

niṣāda (निषाद).—m S The seventh of the musical notes. 2 A caste or an individual of it. Commonly kōḷī. 3 A degraded tribe or a man of it, esp. the son of a Brahman by a Shudra woman.

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

niśāda (निशाद).—m The seventh of the musical notes. A caste or an individual of it. Commonly kōḷī.

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

Niśāda (निशाद).—A man of low caste; see निषाद (niṣāda). (niśādāputraḥ A pestle; so °śilā a mortar.)

Derivable forms: niśādaḥ (निशादः).

--- OR ---

Niṣāda (निषाद).—

1) Name of one of the wild aboriginal tribes in India, such as hunters, fishermen &c.; a mountaineer; मा निषाद प्रतिष्ठां त्वमगमः शाश्वतीः समा (mā niṣāda pratiṣṭhāṃ tvamagamaḥ śāśvatīḥ samā) Rām.1.2.15; R.14. 52,7; Uttararāmacarita 2.5.

2) A man of a degraded tribe in general, an outcast, a Chāṇḍāla.

3) Especially, the son of a Brāhmaṇa by a Sūdra woman. cf. ब्राह्मणाद्वैश्य- कन्यायामम्बष्ठो नाम जायते । निषादः शूद्रकन्यायां यः पारशव उच्यते (brāhmaṇādvaiśya- kanyāyāmambaṣṭho nāma jāyate | niṣādaḥ śūdrakanyāyāṃ yaḥ pāraśava ucyate) || Manusmṛti 1.8.

4) (In music) The first (more properly the last or seventh) note of the Hindu gamut; गीतकला- विन्यासमिव निषादानुगतम् (gītakalā- vinyāsamiva niṣādānugatam) K.31 (where it has sense 1 also).

5) Name of a Kalpa.

Derivable forms: niṣādaḥ (निषादः).

--- OR ---

Niśāda (निशाद).—= Niṣāda q. v.

Derivable forms: niśādaḥ (निशादः).

Niśāda is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms niśā and ada (अद).

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

Niṣadā (निषदा).—[, see niṣidā.]

--- OR ---

Niṣāda (निषाद).—m., in Sanskrit as name of a hunting tribe; here = naiṣāda, q.v.; in Pali nisāda said to mean robber, commentary (366.27 f.) on Jātaka (Pali) iv.364.14; (bird-)hunter, fowler: Jātakamālā 134.24.

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

Niśāda (निशाद).—m.

(-daḥ) A man of a low caste: see niṣāda.

--- OR ---

Niṣada (निषद).—m.

(-daḥ) A musical note: see niṣāda.

--- OR ---

Niṣāda (निषाद).—m.

(-daḥ) 1. The last or the seventh note of the Hindu gamut, or more properly the highest of the scale. 2. A man of a degraded tribe, or an outcaste, especially the son of a Brahman by a Sudra woman. 3. A fisherman. E. ni before, sad to go, aff. ādhāre ghañ; pervading the mind, &c.

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

Niṣāda (निषाद).—i. e. ni-sad + a, m. 1. A name used to designate aboriginal tribes of India, who are described as fishermen, hunters, and robbers, and are considered as degraded tribes, viz. as the effspring of a Brāhamaṇa by a Śūdra woman, [Mānavadharmaśāstra] 10, 8. 2. The first of the seven musical notes, Mahābhārata 14, 1419.

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

Niṣāda (निषाद).—[masculine] Non-Aryan, barbarian.

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

1) Niśāda (निशाद):—[=ni-śāda] m. a man of low caste, [cf. Lexicographers, esp. such as amarasiṃha, halāyudha, hemacandra, etc.] (= ni-ṣāda).

2) Niṣada (निषद):—[=ni-ṣada] [from ni-ṣad] m. a musical note (= ni-ṣāda), [cf. Lexicographers, esp. such as amarasiṃha, halāyudha, hemacandra, etc.]

3) [v.s. ...] [wrong reading] for niṣadha.

4) Niṣāda (निषाद):—[=ni-ṣāda] [from ni-ṣad] a m. Name of a wild non-Āryan tribe in India (described as hunters, fishermen, robbers etc.), [Vājasaneyi-saṃhitā; Brāhmaṇa; Mahābhārata] etc.

5) [v.s. ...] = bhilla, ‘the Bheels’ [Kathāsaritsāgara; Mahīdhara]

6) [v.s. ...] a man of any degraded tribe, an out-caste ([especially] the son of a Brāhman by a Śūdra woman), [Manu-smṛti x, 8]

7) [v.s. ...] the progenitor of the N°-shad (said to have sprung from the thigh of Vena), [Mahābhārata; Harivaṃśa]

8) [v.s. ...] (in music) Name of the first (more properly the last or 7th) note of the gamut, [Mahābhārata xiv, 1419]

9) [v.s. ...] Name of a Kalpa, [Vāyu-purāṇa]

10) [=ni-ṣāda] b etc. See ni-ṣad.

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

1) Niśāda (निशाद):—(daḥ) 1. m. A man of a low caste.

2) Niṣada (निषद):—[ni-ṣada] (daḥ) 1. m. A musical note.

3) Niṣāda (निषाद):—[ni-ṣāda] (daḥ) 1. m. The highest of the seven musical notes; an outcast; a fisherman.

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

Niṣāda (निषाद) in the Sanskrit language is related to the Prakrit word: Ṇisāya.

[Sanskrit to German]

Nishada 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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Kannada-English dictionary

Source: Alar: Kannada-English corpus

Niṣāda (ನಿಷಾದ):—

1) [noun] the name of a savage tribe that inhabits woods and mountains, the main profession of the members of which is hunting.

2) [noun] a member of that tribe.

3) [noun] the caste the members of which are generally engaged in fishing for their living.

4) [noun] a man belonging to this caste.

5) [noun] a man of a caste the members of which were treated earlier as untouchables.

6) [noun] the seventh note or tone in the ascending scale of both Karnāṭaka and Hindūstāni system of music, corresponding to B of C major in Western system.

7) [noun] the loose soil on the surface of the earth.

--- OR ---

Nisada (ನಿಸದ):—[noun] the quality or state of being true; truth.

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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