Sanskrit quote nr. 3 (Maha-subhashita-samgraha)

Sanskrit text:

अंशुकमिव शीतभयात् संस्त्यानत्वच्छलेन हिमधवलम् ।
अम्भोभिरपि गृहीतं पश्यत शिशिरस्य माहात्म्यम् ॥

aṃśukamiva śītabhayāt saṃstyānatvacchalena himadhavalam |
ambhobhirapi gṛhītaṃ paśyata śiśirasya māhātmyam ||

Meter name: Āryā; Type: Mātrācchanda; 19 syllables per quarter (pāda).

Primary English translation:

“Look at the greatness of the cool season, as even the waters, as if afraid of the cold, have put on a white silken garment in the guise of a thick fall of snow.”

(translation by A. A. Ramanathan)


  1. Introduction
  2. Glossary of terms
  3. Analysis of Sanskrit grammar
  4. Sources
  5. Authorship
  6. About the Mahāsubhāṣitasaṃgraha

Presented above is a Sanskrit aphorism, also known as a subhāṣita, which is at the very least, a literary piece of art. This page provides critical research material such as an anlaysis on the poetic meter used, an English translation, a glossary explaining technical terms, and a list of resources including print editions and digital links.

Glossary of Sanskrit terms

Note: Consider this as an approximate extraction of glossary words based on an experimental segmentation of the Sanskrit verse. Some could be superfluous while some might not be mentioned.

Amshuka (amsuka, aṃśuka, अंशुक): defined in 3 categories.
Bhaya (भय): defined in 11 categories.
Yushmad (yusmad, yuṣmad, युष्मद्): defined in 3 categories.
Shala (sala, śala, शल): defined in 14 categories.
Hima (हिम): defined in 5 categories.
Dhavala (धवल): defined in 7 categories.
Ambhas (अम्भस्): defined in 1 categories.
Ap (अप्): defined in 5 categories.
Grihita (grhita, gṛhīta, गृहीत): defined in 3 categories.
Shishira (sisira, śiśira, शिशिर): defined in 7 categories.
Mahatmya (māhātmya, माहात्म्य): defined in 3 categories.

Defined according to the following glossaries/dictionaries: Hinduism, Sanskrit, Pali, Buddhism, Jainism, Purana, Itihasa (narrative history), Natyashastra (theatrics and dramaturgy), Dharmashastra (religious law), Theravada (major branch of Buddhism), Marathi, Vyakarana (Sanskrit grammar), Vastushastra (architecture), Shilpashastra (iconography), Ayurveda (science of life), Shaktism (Shakta philosophy), Mahayana (major branch of Buddhism), Katha (narrative stories), India history, Chandas (prosody, study of Sanskrit metres), Vaisheshika (school of philosophy)

Analysis of Sanskrit grammar

Note: this is an experimental feature and only shows the first possible analysis of the Sanskrit verse. If the system was successful in segmenting the sentence, you will see of which words it is made up of, generally consisting of Nouns, Pronouns, Verbs, Participles and Indeclinables. Click on the link to show all possible derivations of the word.

  • Line 1: “aṃśukamiva śītabhayāt saṃstyānatvacchalena himadhavalam”
  • aṃśukam -
  • aṃśuka (noun, neuter); (3 der.)
    aṃśukam (adverb)
    aṃśukam (nominative single)
    aṃśukam (accusative single)
  • iva -
  • iva (indeclinable adverb); (1 der.)
    (indeclinable adverb)
    iva (indeclinable); (1 der.)
  • śīta -
  • śīta (noun, masculine); (2 der.)
    śīta (vocative single)
    śīta (noun, neuter); (2 der.)
    śīta (vocative single)
    śi -> śīta (participle, masculine); (2 der.)
    śīta (vocative single), from √śi (class 3 verb)
    śīta (vocative single), from √śi (class 5 verb)
    śi -> śīta (participle, neuter); (2 der.)
    śīta (vocative single), from √śi (class 3 verb)
    śīta (vocative single), from √śi (class 5 verb)
    śī -> śīta (participle, masculine); (1 der.)
    śīta (vocative single), from √śī (class 4 verb)
    śī -> śīta (participle, neuter); (1 der.)
    śīta (vocative single), from √śī (class 4 verb)
    śyā -> śīta (participle, masculine); (1 der.)
    śīta (vocative single), from √śyā (class 1 verb)
    śyā -> śīta (participle, neuter); (1 der.)
    śīta (vocative single), from √śyā (class 1 verb)
  • bhayāt -
  • bhayāt (indeclinable); (1 der.)
    bhaya (noun, masculine); (2 der.)
    bhayāt (adverb)
    bhayāt (ablative single)
    bhaya (noun, neuter); (2 der.)
    bhayāt (adverb)
    bhayāt (ablative single)
  • saṃstyāna -
  • saṃstyāna (noun, masculine); (2 der.)
    saṃstyāna (vocative single)
    saṃstyāna (noun, neuter); (2 der.)
    saṃstyāna (vocative single)
  • tvacch -
  • yuṣmad (pronoun, none); (1 der.)
    tvat (ablative single)
  • śalena -
  • śala (noun, masculine); (1 der.)
    śalena (instrumental single)
    śala (noun, neuter); (1 der.)
    śalena (instrumental single)
  • hima -
  • hima (noun, masculine); (2 der.)
    hima (vocative single)
    hima (noun, neuter); (2 der.)
    hima (vocative single)
  • dhavalam -
  • dhavala (noun, masculine); (2 der.)
    dhavalam (adverb)
    dhavalam (accusative single)
    dhavala (noun, neuter); (3 der.)
    dhavalam (adverb)
    dhavalam (nominative single)
    dhavalam (accusative single)
    dhavalā (noun, feminine); (1 der.)
    dhavalam (adverb)
  • Line 2: “ambhobhirapi gṛhītaṃ paśyata śiśirasya māhātmyam”
  • ambhobhir -
  • ambhas (noun, neuter); (1 der.)
    ambhobhiḥ (instrumental plural)
  • api -
  • api (indeclinable preposition); (1 der.)
    (indeclinable preposition)
    ap (noun, neuter); (1 der.)
    api (locative single)
  • gṛhītam -
  • gṛhīta (noun, masculine); (2 der.)
    gṛhītam (adverb)
    gṛhītam (accusative single)
    gṛhīta (noun, neuter); (3 der.)
    gṛhītam (adverb)
    gṛhītam (nominative single)
    gṛhītam (accusative single)
    gṛhītā (noun, feminine); (1 der.)
    gṛhītam (adverb)
    grah -> gṛhīta (participle, masculine); (1 der.)
    gṛhītam (accusative single), from √grah (class 9 verb)
    grah -> gṛhīta (participle, neuter); (2 der.)
    gṛhītam (nominative single), from √grah (class 9 verb)
    gṛhītam (accusative single), from √grah (class 9 verb)
  • paśyata -
  • paśyata (noun, masculine); (2 der.)
    paśyata (vocative single)
    paśyata (noun, neuter); (2 der.)
    paśyata (vocative single)
  • śiśirasya -
  • śiśira (noun, masculine); (1 der.)
    śiśirasya (genitive single)
    śiśira (noun, neuter); (1 der.)
    śiśirasya (genitive single)
  • māhātmyam -
  • māhātmya (noun, neuter); (3 der.)
    māhātmyam (adverb)
    māhātmyam (nominative single)
    māhātmyam (accusative single)


This quote is contained within the following Sanskrit literary sources:

Śārṅgadharapaddhati 3935: A Sanskrit anthology. Includes 4689 poetic verses divided into 163 sections (paddhati). The subjects of these aphorisms primarily concern moral philosophy and ethics. The book was compiled by Śārṅgadhara in 1363 A.D..
More info

Subhāṣitaratnabhāṇḍāgāra 347.4: Literally, “Gems of Sanskrit poetry”. This work is a recent compilation of more than 10,000 Subhāṣitas, or ‘sanskrit aphorisms’. The book was compiled by Nārāyaṇa Rāma Ācārya in 1952.
More info

Subhāṣitasudhāratnabhāṇḍāgāra 225.5: Literally, “Treasury of Sanskrit Poetry”. A compendium of amusing, sarcastic and instructive verses. The book was compiled by Śivadatta Kaviratna in 1985.
More info


Śārṅgadhara (14th century) is the compiler of the Śārṅgadharapaddhati, into which he included this quote, ascribing the authorship to Amṛtavardhana. Śārṅgadhara was the son of Dāmodara and grandson of Rāghava-deva (the rājaguru of Hammīrabhūpati of Śakambharī). Hammīra was the king of Śākhabharī and reigned from 1262–1301 A.D.

Nārāyaṇa Rāma Ācārya (1900 A.D.) is the compiler of the Subhāṣitaratnabhāṇḍāgāra, into which he included this quote, ascribing the authorship to Amṛtavardhana.

Śivadatta Kaviratna is the compiler of the Subhāṣitasudhāratnabhāṇḍāgāra, into which he included this quote, ascribing the authorship to Amṛtavardhana.

About the Mahāsubhāṣitasaṃgraha

This quote is included within the Mahāsubhāṣitasaṃgraha (महासुभाषितसंग्रह, maha-subhashita-samgraha / subhasita-sangraha), which is a compendium of Sanskrit aphorisms (subhāṣita), collected from various sources. Subhāṣita is a genre of Sanskrit literature, exposing the vast and rich cultural heritage of ancient India.

It has serial number 3 and can be found on page 1. (read on

Sanskrit is the oldest living language and bears testimony to the intellectual past of ancient India. Three major religions (Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism) share this language, which is used for many of their holy books. Besides religious manuscripts, much of India’s ancient culture has been preserved in Sanskrit, covering topics such as Architecture, Music, Botany, Surgery, Ethics, Philosophy, Dance and much more.

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