• As early as 300 B.C., India already
possessed a considerable body of
literature written in several Indian
• SANSKRIT- ancestral language
-means cultivated or
• The earliest known literature of
India is a collection of traditions
handed down by word of mouth.
• VEDAS (1500–1200 BCE)-
contains hymns addressed to the
Indian gods. (Bible of Indians)
(Books of Knowledge)
THE RIG- VEDA
- 1028 hymns to various gods
- The chief object of worship is
Brahma, the eternal, self- existent god.
- The prevailing religion is Hindu
- The most notable single poem in this
collection is the “Creation Hymn”
THE SAMA- VEDA
- “Book of Chants”
- It consists principally of liturgies, of
which most are repetitions of hymns
in the Rig-Veda
THE YAHUR- VEDA
- “Prayer Book”
- “Book of Rituals”
- This is also liturgical and repetitions
of the Rig- Veda, but it contains, in
addition, many original prose
THE ATHARVA- VEDA
- “Book of Spells”
- It contains hymns, consists chiefly of
spells, incantations, and notions
about demonology and witchcraft.
• India was the center of an ancient
civilization which spread east and
south and influenced the
language and culture of many
countries in both Europe and
• Indian civilization is older than that
of the ancient Greeks and Romans.
• Long before Christ lived, the Indians
were already preaching the
brotherhood of all people and
fatherhood of God.
• Indian culture has interesting and
distinctive qualities. Indian
literature, already fully developed
over 3000 years ago, is rich in
spiritual ang imaginative values.
• Trigonometry, the first grammar
books, first study of phonetics, game
1. Indian literature is based on
piety, a deeply religious spirit.
- Indians believe that a knowledge
of gods and a strong belief in
Hinduism is necessary to save
2. Indian literary masterpieces are
written in epic form, corresponds to
the great epochs in the history of
-The Ramayana and the
Mahabharata are the most important
epics of India; the latter is the
longest epic in the world.
• The Indians believed in
• Indians believe in kindness to other
people and to animals. They also
abstain from destroying plants
because in that plant might be
reincarnated one’s dead relative.
• RAMAYANA is about the reincarnation of
Vishnu in the person of Rama.
• MAHABHARATA deals with another
reincarnation of Vishnu in the person of
BHASA AND KALIDASA- Indian Shakespeare
Indian drama is characterized by poetry
and idyllic beauty. It concentrates on love
as the background of the story; it has a
happy ending always.
The text is a mixture of prose and poetry.
PANCHANTANTRA (Five Headings)
- is an ancient Indian inter-related
collection of animal fables in verse and
prose, in a frame story format.
- It is based on older oral
traditions, including "animal fables that
are as old as we are able to
imagine", including the Buddhist Jataka
- The Song of the Bhagavan, often referred
to as simply the Gita, is a 700-verse
scripture that is part of
the Hindu epic Mahabharata. This
scripture contains a conversation
between Pandava prince Arjuna and his
guide Lord Krishna on a variety of
theological and philosophical issues.
- He was a great Indian poet.
- He started writing at the age of 8.
- 1913, 1915
- Author of Gitanjali (Song Offerings)