Maithil Brahmin

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Maithil Brahmins are a Hindu Brahmin community from the Mithila region of the Indian subcontinent that lies in northern and eastern Bihar of India and Province No. 2 of Nepal. They are one of the five Pancha-Gauda Brahmin communities.[1][2]


Some of the dynastic families of the Mithila region, such as the Oiniwars, were Maithil Brahmins and were noted for their patronage of Maithil culture.[3]

In the 1960s and 1970s, the Maithil Brahmins became politically significant in Bihar. Binodanand Jha and Lalit Narayan Mishra emerged as prominent political leaders of the community. Under the Chief Ministry of Jagannath Mishra many Maithil Brahmins assumed important political positions in Bihar.[4]


According to the Vedic Sanghita, Maithil Brahmins are divided into the Bachasnai and the Chhandog and each group is strictly exogamous. They are also further classified by four main Mulgrams, the Strotiyas, the Yogs, the Panjis and the Jaiwars. They are all expected to be endogamous however these days this is no longer enforced strictly.[5]

Religious practices[edit]

They are mainly practitioners of Shaktism in various forms, however there are also Vaishnavites and Shaivites.[6] Those Maithil Brahmins who practice Shaktism worship Bhagawati.[7]


Panjis or Panji Prabandh are extensive genealogical records maintained among Maithil Brahmins similar to the Hindu genealogy registers at Haridwar.[8] They are used mainly when fixing marriages and delineate the last 14 generations of the bride and grooms family.[citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ James G. Lochtefeld (2002). The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Hinduism: N-Z. Rosen. pp. 490–491. ISBN 9780823931804.
  2. ^ D. Shyam Babu and Ravindra S. Khare, ed. (2011). Caste in Life: Experiencing Inequalities. Pearson Education India. p. 168. ISBN 9788131754399.
  3. ^ Jha, Makhan (1982). "Civilizational Regions of Mithila & Mahakoshal". p. 64.
  4. ^ Verma, Ravindra Kumar (May 1991). "Caste and Bihar Politics". Economic and Political Weekly. Sameeksha Trust. 26 (18): 1142–4. JSTOR 41498247.
  5. ^ Jha, Makhan (1997). Anthropology of Ancient Hindu Kingdoms: A Study in Civilizational Perspective. p. 32. ISBN 9788175330344. Retrieved 6 April 2017.
  6. ^ Jha, Makhan (1997). Anthropology of Ancient Hindu Kingdoms: A Study in Civilizational Perspective. M.D. Publications Pvt. Ltd. pp. 38–. ISBN 978-81-7533-034-4.
  7. ^ Maitra, Asim (1986). Religious Life of the Brahman: A Case Study of Maithil Brahmans. Inter-India Publications. p. 54. ISBN 9788121001717.
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 17 July 2007. Retrieved 2007-09-16.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)

External links[edit]