Shaunaka, aka: Śaunaka, Saunaka; 8 Definition(s)


Shaunaka means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit. 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 Śaunaka can be transliterated into English as Saunaka or Shaunaka, using the IAST transliteration scheme (?).

In Hinduism

Vyakarana (Sanskrit grammar)

Śaunaka (शौनक).—A great ancient Vedic scholar who is believed to have written the Rk. Pratisakhya, which is said to be common for the two main branches of the Rgveda but which at present represents, in fact, all the different branches of the Rgveda.

(Source): Wikisource: A dictionary of Sanskrit grammar
context information

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.


Śaunaka (शौनक):—Son of Śunaka (son of Gṛtsamada). (see Bhāgavata Purāṇa 9.17.1-3)

(Source): Wisdom Library: Bhagavata Purana

Śaunaka (शौनक) was the chief of the sages at the great sacrifice in Naimiṣa forest to whom the Mahābhārata and the Purāṇas were recited by the Sūta in the reign of Adhisīmakṛṣṇa, the great-grandson of Janamejaya and the sixth in generation from Arjuna in the Paurava line.—Vāyupurāṇa 1.12; 99, 255-8; Padmapurāṇa 1.1.19.

(Source): Siva Purana - English Translation

1) Śaunaka (शौनक).—General. A renowned ācārya. He is believed to be the author of the famous works—"Ṛgveda Anukramaṇī", "Āraṇyakam", "Ṛkprātiśākhya", etc. (See full article at Story of Śaunaka from the Puranic encyclopaedia by Vettam Mani)

2) Śaunaka (शौनक).—A Brāhmaṇa who went to the forest with Yudhiṣṭhira. (Mahābhārata Vana Parva, Chapter 2).

(Source): Puranic Encyclopaedia

1a) Śaunaka (शौनक).—A son of Śunaka; a great sage of the Ṛg Veda school. A kulapati; addressed Sūta as to the circumstances of the composition of the bhāgavata purāṇa;1 had his residence in Naimiṣālaya; taught knowledge of astra and kriyā to Śatānīka;2 a pupil of Pathya; divided the Atharva Samhitā between his two disciples Babhra and Saindhavāyana.3 A Kṣatropetadvija; four castes were formed under him;4 a mantrakṛt and a madhyamādhvaryu;5 asked Vaiśampāyana for a śānti ritual;6 initiated Śatānīka into ātmajñāna.7

  • 1) Bhāgavata-purāṇa IX. 17. 3; I. 1. 4; 4. 1-13; Matsya-purāṇa 1. 5; Vāyu-purāṇa 93. 24.
  • 2) Bhāgavata-purāṇa XII. 4. 43; IX. 22. 38; Matsya-purāṇa 25. 3; 43. 1-2; Vāyu-purāṇa 104. 19; 106. 39.
  • 3) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 35. 59-60; Vāyu-purāṇa 61. 52-3; Viṣṇu-purāṇa III. 6. 11-12.
  • 4) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 67. 4. 66. 88; Vāyu-purāṇa 92. 4-5.
  • 5) Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa II. 32. 106; Matsya-purāṇa 145. 100; 244. 3.
  • 6) Ib. 93. 1.
  • 7) Viṣṇu-purāṇa IV. 21. 4.

1b) Of Bhārgava gotra.*

  • * Matsya-purāṇa 195. 18.

1c) One of the eighteen teachers of the vāstu śāstra.*

  • * Matsya-purāṇa 252. 3.

1d) A son of Gṛtasamada; a propagator of varṇa dharma.*

  • * Viṣṇu-purāṇa IV. 8. 6.

1e) A branch of the Bhārgavas; Kṣatropeta dvijas.*

  • * Brahmāṇḍa-purāṇa III. 1. 100; 67. 6; Vāyu-purāṇa 92. 6.

2) Saunaka (सौनक).—A Bhārgava gotra.*

  • * Vāyu-purāṇa 65. 96.
(Source): Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index
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.

General definition (in Hinduism)

Shaunaka (शौनक) is the name applied to teachers, and to a Shakha of the Atharvaveda. It is especially the name of a celebrated Sanskrit grammarian, author of the Ṛgveda-Prātiśākhya, the Bṛhaddevatā, the Caraṇa-vyūha and six Anukramaṇīs (indices) to the Rigveda. He is claimed as the teacher of Katyayana and especially of Ashvalayana, and is said to have united the Bashkala and Shakala Shakhas of the Rigveda. In legend, he is sometimes identified with Gritsamada, a Vedic Rishi. According to the Vishnu Purana, Shaunaka was the son of Gritsamada, and invented the system of the four levels of human life.

(Source): WikiPedia: Hinduism

Śaunaka (शौनक).—One of the chief sages (ṛṣi) at the conclave of sages gathered at the forest of Naimiṣāraṇya when Sūta Gosvāmī spoke Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam.

(Source): ISKCON Press: Glossary

Languages of India and abroad

Sanskrit-English dictionary

Śaunaka (शौनक).—Name of a great sage, the reputed author of the Ṛigveda Prātiśākhya and various other Vedic compositions.

Derivable forms: śaunakaḥ (शौनकः).

(Source): DDSA: The practical 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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