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Tarka-Sangraha (IAST: Tarka-saṅgraha) is a treatise in Sanskrit giving a foundational exposition of the ancient Indian system of logic and reasoning. The work is authored by Annambhatta and the author himself has given a detailed commentary, called Tarka-Sangraha Deepika, for the text.[1][2] Annambhatta composed the text as well as the commentary in the second half of 17th century CE.[3] The text of Tarka-sangraha is a small book with about 15 pages only[4] and it was composed to help boys and girls learn easily the basic principles of Nyaya. Of all the works of Annambhatta, only Tarka-Sangraha and its commentary attained wide acceptance. They have been used as basic text for beginners for several generations.

In Indian philosophical writings, the traditional structure of presenting a system consisted of three things: uddesa (listing of items to be discussed), laksana (defining each item in the list) and pariksa (critically examining whether the definitions apply properly to the items defined). The Tarka-Sangraha follows this model except for the third item of pariksa. The text presents the ontology, logic and epistemology of the Nyaya-Vaiseshika system.[5]


Tarka-Sangraha is a compound of the words "tarka" and "saṃgraha."[6] Saṃgraha means collection or compilation.[7] Tarka has various meanings, but Annambhatta defines it in his commentary, Tarka-Samgraha-Dipika, as all the categories accepted in Vaiśeṣika philosophy.


Annambhatta begins the Tarka-Sangraha with a verse in prayer to Shiva and salutations to his guru.[7]

Annambhatta, author of Tarka-Sangraha[edit]

Practically only very little is known about Annambhatta the author of Tarka-Sangraha. From the scanty references to other works and writers contained in his works, it has been estimated that Annambhatta must be a comparatively modern author and he must have flourished during the seventeenth century CE. His father was Tirumala Ācārya from Advaitavidyācārya Rāghava Somyāji's family.[8] Tirumala was Tailanga Brahmin of North Arcot District of erstwhile state of Andhra Pradesh who had settled down in Benares.[5] He was a Rigvedi Smarta Brahmana well versed in Vedanta philosophy.

Annambhatta's native village was Garikapāda.[6] Annambhatta was a learned man in several areas of traditional scholarship, namely, Nyaya, Vyakarana, Vedanta and Purva-Mimamsa. He studied grammar with Śeṣa Vīreśvara while in Varanasi.[8] He learned about Advaita Vedanta from Brahmendra Sārasvatī and Mimamsa from Viśvanātha.[9]

Though not as well known as Tarka-Sangraha, many of Annambhatta's works on other disciplines have survived. Besides, Tarka-Sangraha and its Commentary Dipika, the following works have been attributed to Annambhatta:[10]

  • Mitakshara (on the Brahma Sūtras)[8]
  • Tattva-Bodhini-Tika
  • Nyaya-Parisishta-Prakasa
  • Subodhini-Sudhasara
  • Katyayana-Pratisakhya-Vyakhyana
  • Mahabhashya-Vivarnodyatana
  • Tattvacinthamnyaloka-Siddhanjana
  • Brahmasutra-Vritti

Annambhata only mentions his name in the colophon of the Tarka-Sangraha.[6]

Sanskrit English
kaṇādanyāyamatayorvālavyutpatti siddhaye |

annaṃbhaṭṭena viduṣā racitastarkasaṃgrahaḥ ||The learned scholar, Annambhaṭṭa, has composed this text called Tarkasangraha in order to facilitate the understanding of the learners about the doctrines of Kaṇāda i.e. Vaiśeṣika and Nyāya.[11]

Commentaries on Tarka-Sangraha[edit]

Because of its wide popularity, several scholars have written commentaries on Tarks-Sangraha. Annambhatta, the author of the treatise, himself has written a commentary named Tarka-Samgraha-Dipika. Researchers have located as many as 90 different commentaries on Tarka-Sangraha including the one by Annambhatta.[5]


  • For a detailed discussion on the date of Annambhatta, author of Tarka-Sangraha, see Tarka Sangraha of Annambhatta (Bombay Sanskrit Series).[10]
  • The text of Tarka-Sangraha without any commentary has been reproduced in the Devanagari script itself in the website of Sanskrit Documents.org.[12]


  1. ^ James Robert Ballantyne (1849). Lectures on the Nyaya Philosophy Embracing the Text of Tarka Sangraha. Allahabad: Printed for the use of Benares College. p. 1. Retrieved 16 November 2016. tarka sangraha.
  2. ^ Annambhaṭṭa, James Robert Ballantyne (1851). The Tarka-sangraha, with a translation and notes in Hindí and English. Presbyterian Mission Press. Retrieved 17 November 2016.
  3. ^ Yashawant Vasudev Athalye, ed. (1918). Tarka Sangraha of Annambhatta (Bombay Sanskrit Series). Bombay: The Department of Public Instruction. Retrieved 17 November 2016.
  4. ^ "Tarka-Sangraha of Annambhatta" (PDF). Sanskrit Documents. Retrieved 18 November 2016.
  5. ^ a b c V. N. Jha (January 2010). Tarkasangraha of Annambhatta (English Translation with Notes). Ernakulam, Kerala: Chinmaya International Foundation. p. ix. Retrieved 17 November 2016.
  6. ^ a b c Goswami, Diptimani (2014). "Nyaya-Vaisheshika categories (Study)".
  7. ^ a b Goswami, Diptimani (May 2014). A study of nyayavaisesika categories with special reference to tarkasamgraha (PhD thesis). Gauhati University. p. 29.-30
  8. ^ a b c Raja, K. Kunjunni; Coward, Harold G. (2015). The Encyclopedia of Indian Philosophies, Volume 5: The Philosophy of the Grammarians. Princeton: Princeton University Press. pp. 237–238. ISBN 978-1-4008-7270-1.
  9. ^ www.wisdomlib.org (27 December 2018). "Annambhatta, Annaṃbhaṭṭa: 7 definitions". www.wisdomlib.org. Retrieved 9 April 2024.
  10. ^ a b Yashawant Vasudev Athalye, ed. (1918). Tarka Sangraha of Annambhatta (Bombay Sanskrit Series). Bombay: The Department of Public Instruction. Retrieved 17 November 2016. (Annambhatta and his works pp.LX – LXX)
  11. ^ Jha, V N. Tarkasangraha Of Annambhatta. p. 120.
  12. ^ "Tarka-Sangraha of Annambhatta". Sanskrit Documents. Retrieved 18 November 2016.

See also[edit]