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Between the EmpiresSociety in India 300 BCE to 400 CE$
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Patrick Olivelle

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195305326

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195305326.001.0001

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The Nārāyaṇīya and the Early Reading Communities of the Mahābhārata

The Nārāyaṇīya and the Early Reading Communities of the Mahābhārata

(p.226) (p.227) 10 The Nārāyaṇīya and the Early Reading Communities of the Mahābhārata
Between the Empires

Alf Hiltebeitel

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses a unit of the twelfth book of the Mahābhārata, the Nārāyaṇīya, for its bearing on the textual and religious history of post-Vedic and classical India. Although no portion of the Mahābhārata has been considered so axiomatically “Gupta” as the Nārāyaṇīya, the evidence for such dating-furthered most recently in the collaborative volume Nārāyaṇīya Studien and in subsequent essays by two of its authors is far from convincing. Likewise, it has been argued in that volume and by others before it that no unit of the Mahābhārata is so at odds with the rest of the text. It has become the axiomatic interpolation, and would have to be considered the ultimate test for any argument that the archetype recovered by the Poona Critical Edition, in which the Nārāyaṇīya is included, could provide access to the work as it was originally conceived.

Keywords:   Mahābhārata, Nārāyaṇīya, Gupta, Nārāyaṇīya Studien, Poona Critical Edition

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