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The Kavyadarsha (Sanskrit: काव्यादर्श, Kāvyādarśa) by Dandin is the earliest surviving systematic treatment of poetics in Sanskrit. This work is divided into 3 paricchedas (chapters) in most of the printed editions, except one, where the third chapter of the other editions is further divided into two. Most of the printed editions have 660 verses, except one, which has 663.[1] In Kāvyādarśa, Daṇḍin argued that a poem's beauty derived from its use of rhetorical devices – of which he distinguished thirty-six types. He was the main proponent of gunaprasthana, the view that poetry needed qualities or virtues such as shlesa (punning), prasada (favour), samata (sameness), madhurya (beauty), arthavyakti (interpretation), and ojah (vigour). Poetry consisted in the presence of one of these qualities or a combination of them.


  • Dharmendra Gupta (1973), kāvyādarśaḥ. ācāryadaṇḍiviracitaḥ. suvarṇaṇākhyayā saṃskṛtahindivyākhyāyā sametaḥ, Delhi: Meharcand Lacchmandas  Review


  1. ^ Kane, P. V. (1998) [1971]. History of Sanskrit Poetics. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass. pp. 88–102. ISBN 81-208-0274-8. 


  • Yigal Bronner (2007), "This is no Lotus, it is a Face: Poetics as Grammar in Daṇḍin’s Investigation of the Simile", in Sergio La Porta; David Shulman, The Poetics of Grammar and the Metaphysics of Sound and Sign, Brill, ISBN 978-90-04-15810-8 
  • Edwin Gerow, "Indian poetics" in History of Indian Literature ed. Jan Gonda
  • S. K. De, History of Sanskrit Poetics
  • P. V. Kane, History of Sanskrit Poetics