10 Facts About Matsya Purana


Matsya Purana is one of the eighteen major Puranas, and among the oldest and better preserved in the Puranic genre of Sanskrit literature in Hinduism.

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Matsya Purana has survived into the modern era in many versions, varying in the details but almost all of the published versions have 291 chapters, except the Tamil language version, written in Grantha script, which has 172 chapters.

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Matsya Purana is notable for being encyclopedic in the topics it covers.

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The general consensus among scholars is that Matsya Purana is among the older Purana, with its first version complete in the 3rd-century CE, but sections of it were routinely revised, deleted and expanded over the centuries, through the 2nd-millennium CE.

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Tamil version of the Matsya Purana has two sections, Purva and Uttara, and it consists of 172 chapters.

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Matsya Purana covers a diverse range of topics, many unrelated to Vishnu, and its mixed encyclopedic character led Horace Hayman Wilson – famous for his 19th-century Purana studies and translations, to state, "it is too mixed a character to be considered a genuine Purana" and largely a collection of miscellaneous topics.

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The Matsya Purana describes 20 styles of Hindu temples, such as Meru, Mandara and Kailasa designs.

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Design guidebooks embedded inside the Matsya Purana were likely suggestions, and not binding on those who sponsored or built the temples, states Michael Meister.

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Matsya Purana contains, like all Puranas, a collection of chapters called the Mahatmya.

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Matsya Purana has a shloka, which explains the importance of reverence of ecology in Hinduism.

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