Svayamvara, Svayaṃvara, Svayam-vara: 18 definitions


Svayamvara means something in Hinduism, Sanskrit, Jainism, Prakrit, the history of ancient India, 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

Vaishnavism (Vaishava dharma)

Source: ISKCON Press: Glossary

Svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर).—The ceremony in which a princess is allowed to choose her husband.

Source: Pure Bhakti: Bhagavad-gita (4th edition)

Svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर) refers to “contest to win the hand of a princess in marriage, wherein the princess herself (svayam) chooses (vara)”. (cf. Glossary page from Śrīmad-Bhagavad-Gītā).

Vaishnavism book cover
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Vaishnava (वैष्णव, vaiṣṇava) or vaishnavism (vaiṣṇavism) represents a tradition of Hinduism worshipping Vishnu as the supreme Lord. Similar to the Shaktism and Shaivism traditions, Vaishnavism also developed as an individual movement, famous for its exposition of the dashavatara (‘ten avatars of Vishnu’).

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Purana and Itihasa (epic history)

[«previous next»] — Svayamvara in Purana glossary
Source: Shiva Purana - English Translation

Svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर) refers to the “celebration of the voluntary wooing”, as mentioned in the Śivapurāṇa chapter 2.1.3.—“[...] the great sage Nārada hastened to the place where Svayaṃvara was to be held and where the princes had assembled. O great brahmins, the Svayaṃvara hall splendidly decorated and graced by so many princes shone like another council-chamber of Indra”.

Note: Svayaṃvara was an ancient custom amongst the kings of Kṣatriya caste to hold a public assembly of suitors for the selection of a husband for their daughters.

Source: Puranic Encyclopedia

1) Svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर).—A sub-section of Ādi Parva in Mahābhārata. This sub-section comprises Chapters 183 to 191 of Ādi Parva.

2) Svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर).—A Kṣatriya custom of princesses selecting their husbands themselves. There are three kinds of Svayaṃvara. These three types are stipulated for Kings only. The first type is Icchāsvayamvara, the second one is Savyavasthāsvayaṃvara and the third is Śauryaśulkasvayaṃvara. No condition is attached to Icchāsvayaṃvara. Anybody may be chosen as husband according to the wish of the bride. Damayantī Svayaṃvara is an example of this. In the second it will be stipulated that the bridegroom will have to possess certain qualifications. In Sītā-Svayaṃvara Śrī Rāma drew the bow of Tryambaka, and married Sītā. This is an example of the second type of Svayaṃvara. The third type is meant for adventurous heroes. Arjuna’s marrying Subhadrā is an example of the third type of Svayaṃvara. (Devī Bhāgavata, Skandha 3).

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: The Purana Index

Svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर).—A form of marriage by which Kṛṣṇa married a good number of women;1 of Draupadī;2 of Lakṣmaṇā.3

  • 1) Viṣṇu-purāṇa III. 18. 88; V. 28. 6; Bhāgavata-purāṇa I. 10. 29; X. 52. 16.
  • 2) Ib. X. 57. 10 [1].
  • 3) Ib. X. 58. 57.
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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Dharmashastra (religious law)

Source: Oxford Academic: Homo Ritualis: Hindu Ritual and Its Significance to Ritual Theory

Svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर) refers to “choosing the groom” and represents one of the various marriage rites of the Hindu Newars, mentioned in the Daśakarmavidhi: a marriage handbook from Bhaktapur containing both Hindu and Newar marriage ceremonies.—Despite many congruencies between Hindu Parbatiyā and Hindu Newar marriage handbooks, it becomes evident that Newar marriage handbooks mention specific ritual elements that cannot be found in the Brahmanical-Sanskritic texts.—The Svayaṃvara rite is usually performed at the House of the Groom and is mentioned under the heading of “Wedding”.

Dharmashastra book cover
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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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In Jainism

General definition (in Jainism)

[«previous next»] — Svayamvara in Jainism glossary
Source: The Jaina Iconography

Svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर) is the name of the father of Abhinandananātha: the fourth of twenty-four Tīrthaṃkaras or Jinas, commonly depicted in Jaina iconography.—In Jaina history of pontiffs, Abhinandananātha’s place is Ayodbyā. His father’s name is King Svayaṃvara and mother’s name Siddhārthā. He attained mokṣa accompanied by a thousand monks, as, indeed, did all the first eleven Tīrthaṃkaras except Supārśvanātha.

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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.

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India history and geography

Source: Cologne Digital Sanskrit Dictionaries: Indian Epigraphical Glossary

Svayaṃvara.—(EI 8), the bride's selection of her husband. Note: svayaṃvara 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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Languages of India and abroad

Marathi-English dictionary

[«previous next»] — Svayamvara in Marathi glossary
Source: DDSA: The Molesworth Marathi and English Dictionary

svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर).—m n (S) The choosing, by a female, of a man to be her husband.

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svayaṃvarā (स्वयंवरा).—f (S) A female that chooses her own husband.

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

svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर).—m n The choosing of a spouse by a female.

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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

[«previous next»] — Svayamvara in Sanskrit glossary
Source: DDSA: The practical Sanskrit-English dictionary

Svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर).—self-choice, self-election (of a husband by the bride herself), choicemarriage.

Derivable forms: svayaṃvaraḥ (स्वयंवरः).

Svayaṃvara is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms svayam and vara (वर).

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Svayaṃvarā (स्वयंवरा).—a maiden who chooses her own husband; ततस्ते शुश्रुवुः कृष्णां पञ्चलेषु स्वयंवराम् (tataste śuśruvuḥ kṛṣṇāṃ pañcaleṣu svayaṃvarām) Mahābhārata (Bombay) 1.61.3.

Svayaṃvarā is a Sanskrit compound consisting of the terms svayam and varā (वरा).

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

Svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर).—m.

(-raḥ) The public choice of a husband by a princess, from a number of suitors assembled for the purpose. f.

(-rā) A girl choosing her husband. E. svayam of herself, vara selecting.

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

Svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर).—i. e. svayam -vara, I. m. The public choice of a husband by a princess, [Nala] 2, 8. Ii. f. , A girl choosing her husband, [Mānavadharmaśāstra] 9, 92.

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

Svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर).—[adjective] self-choosing; kanyā (±bhartṛ)svayaṃvarā [feminine] a maiden who thus chooses her husband. [masculine] self-choice ([especially] of a husband by a girl of the warrior caste).

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

1) Svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर):—[=svayaṃ-vara] [from svayaṃ > sva] a mf(ā)n. self-choosing (with kanyā, ‘a girl who chooses her husband herself’), [Manu-smṛti; Mahābhārata] etc.

2) [v.s. ...] m. self-choice, the election of a husband by a princess or daughter of a Kṣatriya at a public assembly of suitors, [Mahābhārata; Rāmāyaṇa] etc.

3) [=svayaṃ-vara] b etc. See p.1278.

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

Svayaṃvara (स्वयंवर):—(raṃ) 1. n. Free choice of a husband. 1. f. A girl choosing her own husband.

[Sanskrit to German]

Svayamvara in German

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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

[«previous next»] — Svayamvara in Kannada glossary
Source: Alar: Kannada-English corpus

Svayaṃvara (ಸ್ವಯಂವರ):—[noun] a particular manner of marriage, in which the bride selects her husband in an assembly of a large number of men.

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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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