Prabha, Prabhā: 32 definitions


Prabha means something in Buddhism, Pali, Hinduism, Sanskrit, the history of ancient India, Marathi, Hindi, biology. 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

Shaivism (Shaiva philosophy)

Source: Wisdom Library: Ṣaṭsāhasra-saṃhitā

1) Prabhā (प्रभा):—One of the twelve guṇas associated with Randhra (the first seat of the Svādhiṣṭhāna-chakra). According to tantric sources such as the Śrīmatottara-tantra and the Gorakṣasaṃhitā (Kādiprakaraṇa), these twelve guṇas are represented as female deities. According to the Ṣaṭsāhasrasaṃhitā however, they are explained as particular syllables. They (e.g. Prabhā) only seem to play an minor role with regard to the interpretation of the Devīcakra (first of five chakras, as taught in the Kubjikāmata-tantra).

She is also known by the name Samā, according to the Gorakṣa-saṃhitā.

2) Prabhā (प्रभा, “Light”):—Second of the eight Mātṛs born from the body of Bhānumatī, according to the Kubjikāmata-tantra. These eight sub-manifestations (mātṛ), including Prabhā, embody several qualities expressive of the sun’s burning heat and glaring light. They are presided over by the Bhairava Ruru. Bhānumatī is the sixth of the Eight Mahāmātṛs, residing within the Mātṛcakra (third of the five cakras) and represents the sun.

Source: Wisdom Library: Śaivism

Prabhā (प्रभा) refers to the city of Kubera or Soma, situated on the northern lower slope of mount Meru, according to Parākhyatantra 5.66. Meru is the name of a golden mountained situated in the middle of nine landmasses (navakhaṇḍa): Bhārata, Hari, Kimpuruṣa, Ramyaka, Ramaṇa, Kuru, Bhadrāśva, Ketumāla and Ilāvṛta. Together these khaṇḍas make up the continent known as Jambūdvīpa.

Prabhā is also known by the name Prabhāvatī or Mahodayā, and is mentioned in various other sources, eg., the Svacchanda-tantra 10.132-136, Kiraṇa-āgama 8.51-54, Mṛgendra-āgama vidyāpāda 13.47-54, Sarvajñānottara-tantra adhvaprakaraṇa 34-36 and Mataṅga-āgama vidyāpāda 23.60-63

The Parākhyatantra is an old Śaiva-siddhānta tantra dating from before the 10th century.

Source: SOAS University of London: Protective Rites in the Netra Tantra

Prabha (प्रभ) refers to the “splendor” (of the moon)”, according to the Netratantra of Kṣemarāja: a Śaiva text from the 9th century in which Śiva (Bhairava) teaches Pārvatī topics such as metaphysics, cosmology, and soteriology.—Accordingly, [verse 2.22cd-28ab]—“[...] That which is described is celebrated in the world as the supreme Amṛta [sa], this is the highest dwelling place. It is the highest Amṛta. Joined with the kalā nectar [visarga], filled with the splendor of the moon (pūrṇacandra-prabha-upama). It is the highest abode [of Śiva]. That is the supreme word. That is supreme strength, that is supreme amṛta. The highest of splendors is highest light of light. [...]”.

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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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

Source: Shiva Purana - English Translation

Prabhā (प्रभा) is another name for Alakā, the “capital of Kubera”, as mentioned in the Śivapurāṇa 2.1.18.—“[...] Alakā is the capital of Kubera, the chief of the Yakṣas and Guhyakas. It is also called Prabhā, Vasudharā and Vasusthalī and is fabled to be situated on a peak of the Himālayas, inhabited also by Śiva.

Source: Puranic Encyclopedia

1) Prabhā (प्रभा).—A devī. This devī sits in the court of Brahmā worshipping him. (Chapter 11, Śānti Parva).

2) Prabhā (प्रभा).—A celestial maiden of Alakāpurī. Once when the sage Aṣṭāvakra went to Alakāpurī this maiden gave a dance performance in his honour. (Śloka 45, Chapter 19, Anu āsana Parva).

3) Prabhā (प्रभा).—Daughter of a dānava called Svarbhānu. She was married to king Āyus and Āyus begot of her sons like Nahuṣa and others (Brahmāṇḍa Purāṇa. 3—6—26).

4) Prabhā (प्रभा).—One of the two wives of King Puṣpārṇa. (4th Skandha, Bhāgavata).

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index

1a) Prabhā (प्रभा).—A queen of Puṣpārṇa, and mother of Prāta, Mādhyandina, and Sāyam.*

  • * Bhāgavata-purāṇa IV. 13. 13.

1b) A daughter of Svarbhānu; wife of Āyu and mother of Nahuṣa and four others;1 one of the nine Devis serving Soma;2 wife of Svarbhānu.3

  • 1) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 6. 23-4; 67. 1; Matsya-purāṇa 6. 21; Vāyu-purāṇa 68. 22, 24; Viṣṇu-purāṇa I. 21. 7.
  • 2) Vāyu-purāṇa 90. 25.
  • 3) Ib. 92. 1.

1c) One of the three wives of Vivasvat;1 mother of Prabhātā; the goddess enshrined in Sūryabimba;2 abandoned her consort for Soma with eight other Devis.3

  • 1) Matsya-purāṇa 11. 2.
  • 2) Ib. 13. 52.
  • 3) Ib. 23. 25.

1d) The wife of Sagara; Yādavī and mother of 60,000 Sagaras.*

  • * Matsya-purāṇa 12. 39, 42.
Source: Shodhganga: The saurapurana - a critical study

Prabhā (प्रभा) is one of the four wives of Bhāskara (sun-god): the son of Aditi and Kaśyapa according to the Vaṃśānucarita section of the 10th century Saurapurāṇa: one of the various Upapurāṇas depicting Śaivism.—Accordingly, The Saurapurāṇa 30.27-73 and chapter 31 descibes the vaṃśānucarita in an abridged form. It is stated that Aditi got from Kaśyapa, Bhāskara, the Sun-god. The Sun-god had four wives—Saṃjñā, Rājñī, Prabhā and Chāyā. Saṃjñā gave birth to Manu from the Sun-god in whose race were born the kings. Prabhā gave birth to Prabhāta of the Sun-god.

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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Vyakarana (Sanskrit grammar)

Source: Wikisource: A dictionary of Sanskrit grammar

1) Prabhā (प्रभा).—, name of a commentary on the Sabdakaustubha by Raghavendracarya Gajendragadkar;

2) Prabhā.—Name of a commentary on Kaiyata's Mahabhasyapradipa.

Vyakarana book cover
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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

Prabhā (प्रभा) refers to one of the 135 metres (chandas) mentioned by Nañjuṇḍa (1794-1868 C.E.) in his Vṛttaratnāvalī. Nañjuṇḍa was a poet of both Kannada and Sanskrit literature flourished in the court of the famous Kṛṣṇarāja Woḍeyar of Mysore. He introduces the names of these metres (e.g., Prabhā) in 20 verses.

Chandas book cover
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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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Jyotisha (astronomy and astrology)

Source: Wikibooks (hi): Sanskrit Technical Terms

Prabhā (प्रभा).—The shadow of the gnomon. Note: Prabhā is a Sanskrit technical term used in ancient Indian sciences such as Astronomy, Mathematics and Geometry.

Jyotisha book cover
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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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Nyaya (school of philosophy)

Source: Shodhganga: A study of Nyāya-vaiśeṣika categories

Prabhā (प्रभा) or Tarkacandrikā is a commentary on the Tarkasaṃgraha which is ascribed to Vaidyanātha Gāḍgīla.—The Tarkasaṃgraha of Annaṃbhaṭṭa is a Sanskrit treatise dealing with the ancient Indian system of logic and reasoning. It’s language is easily understandable and is meant primarily to unlock the doors of the twin-darśana of Nyāya-Vaiśeṣika. There are about twenty five commentaries [viz., the Prabhā] both traditional and modern on this treatise which undoubtedly establishes the importance of Tarkasaṃgraha.

Nyaya book cover
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Nyaya (न्याय, nyaya) refers to a school of Hindu philosophy (astika), drawing its subject-matter from the Upanishads. The Nyaya philosophy is known for its theories on logic, methodology and epistemology, however, it is closely related with Vaisheshika in terms of metaphysics.

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Ayurveda (science of life)

Source: Ayurveda glossary of terms

Prabhā (प्रभा):—Lusture, Shine, Radiance, Glim; caused due to substance with Agni mahabhuta predominance.

Ayurveda book cover
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Āyurveda (आयुर्वेद, ayurveda) is a branch of Indian science dealing with medicine, herbalism, taxology, anatomy, surgery, alchemy and related topics. Traditional practice of Āyurveda in ancient India dates back to at least the first millenium BC. Literature is commonly written in Sanskrit using various poetic metres.

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Kavya (poetry)

Source: Brill: Śaivism and the Tantric Traditions (kavya)

Prabhā (प्रभा) refers to “(shedding) light” (e.g., ‘the ornaments shedding light on her cheeks’), according to Bāṇa’s Kādambarī (p. 225-226).—Accordingly, while describing the shire of the Goddess Caṇḍikā, “[Then follows the image of the Goddess Caṇḍikā, which matches the conception of Kālarātri in the passage from the Mahābhārata:] [...] she bore the coquettish apparel of a woman going out to meet Mahākāla at night, with a vine-like body furnished with a raiment reddened with saffron-dye, with a face with red eyes, whose brows were furrowed into a frown, whose lip was crimsoned with betel that was blood, whose cheeks were reddened by the light shed (prabhā-seka) from ear-ornaments of pomegranate flowers, with a forehead on which there was a tilaka dot of vermillion made by a Śabara beauty, covered by a magnificent gold turban. She was worshipped by goats... mice... antelope and black serpents... She was praised on all sides by flocks of old crows; [...]”.

Kavya book cover
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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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In Buddhism

Tibetan Buddhism (Vajrayana or tantric Buddhism)

Source: Wisdom Library: Tibetan Buddhism

Prabhā (प्रभा) is the name of Vidyārājñī (i.e., “wisdom queen”) 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 Prabhā).

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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Mahayana (major branch of Buddhism)

Source: A Study and Translation of the Gaganagañjaparipṛcchā

Prabhā (प्रभा) refers to a “flash (of lightening)”, according to the Gaganagañjaparipṛcchā: the eighth chapter of the Mahāsaṃnipāta (a collection of Mahāyāna Buddhist Sūtras).—Accordingly, as Bodhisattva Gaganagañja explains to Bodhisattva Ratnaśrī what kind of concentration should be purified: “[...] (40) [when the Bodhisattvas attain] the concentration called ‘Flash of lightening’ (vidyut-prabhā), they will examine the destruction of a moment of thought; (41) [when the Bodhisattvas attain] the concentration called ‘Victory of proper accomplishment’, all good qualities will be fulfilled; (42) [when the Bodhisattvas attain] the concentration called ‘Purification’, all bad qualities will be eliminated; [...]”.

Mahayana book cover
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Mahayana (महायान, mahāyāna) is a major branch of Buddhism focusing on the path of a Bodhisattva (spiritual aspirants/ enlightened beings). Extant literature is vast and primarely composed in the Sanskrit language. There are many sūtras of which some of the earliest are the various Prajñāpāramitā sūtras.

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India history and geography

Source: Shodhganga: a concise history of Sanskrit Chanda literature (history)

Prabhā (प्रभा) by Viśvanātha (alias Viśveśvara) is the name of a commentary on the Vṛttaratnākara of Kedārabhaṭṭa (C. 950-1050 C.E.), who was a celebrated author in Sanskrit prosody. The Vṛttaratnākara is considered as most popular work in Sanskrit prosody, because of its rich and number of commentaries.

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Indian Epigraphical Glossary

Prabhā.—(SII 2), an aureole or nimbus. Cf. prabhā-valaya. Note: prabhā is defined in the “Indian epigraphical glossary” as it can be found on ancient inscriptions commonly written in Sanskrit, Prakrit or Dravidian languages.

India history book cover
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The history of India traces the identification of countries, villages, towns and other regions of India, as well as mythology, zoology, royal dynasties, rulers, tribes, local festivities and traditions and regional languages. Ancient India enjoyed religious freedom and encourages the path of Dharma, a concept common to Buddhism, Hinduism, and Jainism.

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Biology (plants and animals)

Source: Google Books: CRC World Dictionary (Regional names)

Prabha in India is the name of a plant defined with Calamus rotang in various botanical sources. This page contains potential references in Ayurveda, modern medicine, and other folk traditions or local practices It has the synonym Palmijuncus monoecus (Roxb.) Kuntze (among others).

Example references for further research on medicinal uses or toxicity (see latin names for full list):

· Cell and Chromosome Research (1985)
· Calcutta J. Nat. Hist. (1845)
· Proceedings of the Indian Science Congress Association (1976)
· Annals of the Royal Botanic Garden (Calcutta) (1908)
· Revisio Generum Plantarum (1891)
· Species Plantarum (1753)

If you are looking for specific details regarding Prabha, for example extract dosage, diet and recipes, pregnancy safety, health benefits, side effects, chemical composition, have a look at these references.

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This sections includes definitions from the five kingdoms of living things: Animals, Plants, Fungi, Protists and Monera. It will include both the official binomial nomenclature (scientific names usually in Latin) as well as regional spellings and variants.

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Languages of India and abroad

Marathi-English dictionary

Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

prabhā (प्रभा).—f (S) Light, esp. great or diffused light. 2 Shadow, esp. that cast by the style or gnomon of a dial. 3 (In popular misuse.) Account, regard, estimation, consideration. Neg. con. Ex tyācī kāya prabhā; mī kōṇhācī prabhā bāḷagīta nāhīṃ. See under kimmata.

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prabhā (प्रभा).—f S True knowledge. 2 Consciousness or perception.

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

prabhā (प्रभा).—f Light. Shadow cast by the style or gnomon of a dial.

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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

Prabhā (प्रभा).—2 P.

1) To appear, seem.

2) To shine forth, gleam.

3) To begin to become light, begin to dawn; ननु प्रभाता रजनी (nanu prabhātā rajanī) Ś.4; प्रभातकल्पा शशिनेव शर्वरी (prabhātakalpā śaśineva śarvarī) R.3.2.

4) To illuminate, enlighten.

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Prabhā (प्रभा).—

1) Light, splendour, lustre, effulgence, radiance; प्रभास्मि शशिसूर्ययोः (prabhāsmi śaśisūryayoḥ) Bhagavadgītā (Bombay) 7.8; प्रभा पतङ्गस्य (prabhā pataṅgasya) R.2.15,31; 6.18; Ṛtusaṃhāra 1.2; Meghadūta 49; दृष्टस्त्वं प्रभया गोप्या युक्तो वृन्दावने वने (dṛṣṭastvaṃ prabhayā gopyā yukto vṛndāvane vane) Brahmavaivasvata P.

2) A ray of light.

3) The shadow of the sun on a sun-dial.

4) An epithet of Durgā; प्रभा प्रभानशीलत्वात् (prabhā prabhānaśīlatvāt) Devī. P.

5) Name of the city of Kubera.

6) Name of an Apsaras.

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

Prabha (प्रभ).—m., (1) = Sanskrit prabhā, light (abstracted from [compound] prabhaṃkara?), according to all mss. in Lalitavistara 123.1 (verse) candrasūrya-prabhaś ca jyotiṣā…na bhāsate, the light of the sun and moon, the stars, (etc.) do not shine; not a [bahuvrīhi]; we must interpret in this way, or em. to °prabhā; (2) name of a maharṣi: Mahā-Māyūrī 256.28; (3) Prabha- nāmā sahasrāṇi…(anantā nṛpatayo proktā Yādavānāṃ kulodbhavāḥ) (Ārya-)Mañjuśrīmūlakalpa 625.24, thousands of kings named Prabha (literally; probably meaning, whose names contained the element -prabha).

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Prabhā (प्रभा).—(°-) (m.c. Prabha°)-keturājamati, name of a Bud-dha: Gaṇḍavyūha 284.15 (verse).

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

Prabhā (प्रभा).—f.

(-bhā) 1. Light, radiance. 2. A ray of light. 3. The city of Kuvera. 4. One of the wives of the sun. 5. A name of Durga. 6. A name of an Apsara. E. pra exceeding, bhā to shine, affs. aṅ and ṭāp .

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

Prabhā (प्रभा).—[pra-bhā], f. 1. Light, [Rāmāyaṇa] 3, 53, 47. 2. Radiance, Böhtl. Ind. Spr. 1155; splendour, [Vikramorvaśī, (ed. Bollensen.)] [distich] 125.

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

Prabhā (प्रभा).—[feminine] splendour, light, beauty (often —°), [plural] rays; a woman’s name.

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Prabhā (प्रभा).—shine forth, begin to be bright (as the night), appear or be like ([nominative] ±iva).

Prabhā is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms pra and bhā (भा).

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Aufrecht Catalogus Catalogorum

1) Prabhā (प्रभा) as mentioned in Aufrecht’s Catalogus Catalogorum:—[nyāya] by Paṭṭābhirāma. Oppert. 5097.
—by Rāmacandra Bhaṭṭa. Oppert. 4010.
—by Śaśadhara. Oppert. 5185.

2) Prabhā (प्रभा):—Kāvyaprakāśaṭīkā by Vaidyanātha.

3) Prabhā (प्रभा):—Nyāyasiddhāntadīpaṭīkā by Śeṣānanda.

4) Prabhā (प्रभा):—Nyāyasiddhāntamuktāvalīṭīkā by Narasiṃha.

5) Prabhā (प्रभा):—a
—[commentary] on Śaṅkarācārya’s Pañcaratna by Kiśoradasa.

6) Prabhā (प्रभा):—Muhūrtārkaṭīkā by Mṛtyuṃjaya Kokila.

7) Prabhā (प्रभा):—Vṛttaratnakaraṭīkā by Viśvanātha Kavi.

8) Prabhā (प्रभा):—Śabdakaustubhaṭīkā by Rāghavendrācārya.
—by Vaidyanātha Pāyaguṇḍe.

9) Prabhā (प्रभा):—Śāstradīpikāvyākhyā by Vaidyanātha, son of Rāmacandra.

10) Prabhā (प्रभा):—[nyāya] by Rāmacandra. read by Rāmarudra.

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

1) Prabhā (प्रभा):—[=pra-bhā] a. pra-√1. bhā [Parasmaipada] -bhāti, to shine forth, begin to become light, shine, gleam, [Ṛg-veda] etc. etc.;

—to appear, seem, look like ([nominative case] with or without iva), [Mahābhārata; Kāvya literature] etc.;

—to illuminate, enlighten, [Taittirīya-upaniṣad]

2) [from pra-bhā] b f. light, splendour, radiance, beautiful appearance (ifc. often mfn. with f(ā). ), [Manu-smṛti; Mahābhārata] etc.

3) [v.s. ...] the shadow of the gnomon on a sun-dial, [Sūryasiddhānta]

4) [v.s. ...] light variously personified (as wife of the sun, or as wife of Kalpa and mother of Prātar, Madhyaṃ-dina and Sāya id est. morning, midday and evening, or as a form of Durgā in the disc of the sun), [Harivaṃśa; Purāṇa]

5) [v.s. ...] Name of a Śakti, [Hemādri’s Caturvarga-cintāmaṇi]

6) [v.s. ...] of an Apsaras, [Mahābhārata]

7) [v.s. ...] of a daughter of Svar-bhānu and mother of Nahuṣa, [Harivaṃśa]

8) [v.s. ...] of the city of Kubera, [cf. Lexicographers, esp. such as amarasiṃha, halāyudha, hemacandra, etc.]

9) [v.s. ...] of a kind of metre, [Colebrooke]

10) [v.s. ...] Name of sub voce works.

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

Prabhā (प्रभा):—[pra-bhā] (bhā) 1. f. Light; city of Kuvera; wife of the sun; Durgā.

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

Prabha (प्रभ) in the Sanskrit language is related to the Prakrit words: Pabha, Pabhā, Pahā.

[Sanskrit to German]

Prabha 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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Hindi dictionary

Source: DDSA: A practical Hindi-English dictionary

Prabhā (प्रभा):—(nf) lustre, radiance, refulgence; ~[kara] the sun; ~[maṃḍala] a halo.

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