Vasudev Vishnu Mirashi

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Vasudev Vishnu Mirashi

Vasudev Vishnu Mirashi (1893–1985) was a Sanskrit scholar and a prominent Indologist of the 20th century who hailed from Maharashtra, India. He was an expert of his times on stone and copper inscriptions and the coinage of ancient India. For his contribution to Indian history he was honoured with the title Mahamahopadhyaya by the British Indian Government in 1941. He was also awarded Padma Bhushan in 1975 by the President of India.

Early life[edit]

Mirashi was born in a middle-class family on 13 March 1893 at Salashi village in Deogad taluk of Ratnagiri district. After completing his primary and secondary school education at Kolhapur he moved to Pune. He obtained his bachelor's degree in 1914 and did his Master's in 1917 in the subject of Sanskrit at Deccan College


After a brilliant academic career, he shifted to Bombay and worked as Sanskrit professor at Elphinstone College. Subsequently, in 1919, he was appointed to the Sanskrit chair at Morris College in Nagpur. He was appointed principal of the same college in 1942. During 1947-1950, he served as the principal of Vidarbha Mahavidyalaya in Amraoti.

In the 1957-1966 period, Mirashi worked as the Honorary Professor of Ancient Indian History and Culture, and Head of the Department of Post-Graduate Teaching in Humanities at Nagpur University.


Mirashi wrote 30 research works in English, Marathi, and Hindi, and more than 275 papers in various Indological journals.

His Inscriptions of the Kalchuri-Chedi Era (1955), Inscriptions of the Vakatakas (1963), and Inscriptions of the Silaharas (1977) were published in the renowned Corpus Inscriptionum Indicarum Series of the Archaeological Survey of India. He also worked on the stone inscriptions of Satvahanas and Kshatrapas.

Mirashi's other important works comprise four volumes of Literary & Historical Studies in Indology, Kalidasa, and Bhavabhuti.


Mirashi received a large number of honours for his research work.

In 1941, the then Viceroy of India, Linlithgow, honoured Mirashi with the Mahamahopadhyaya title. In 1966, the then President of India, S. Radhakrishnan, awarded him a Certificate of Honour for proficiency in Sanskrit learning. In 1970, he was nominated as the Honorary Correspondent of the Archaeological Department of the Government of India.

The universities of Saugar and Nagpur conferred him with honorary D. Litt. degrees in 1958 and 1960, respectively. He was elected General President of the Numismatic Society of India (1951), the All India Oriental Conference (1959), and the Indian History Congress (1961). The Numismatic Society of India elected him its Honorary Fellow in 1959, and the Epigraphical Society of India did the same in 1974.

The Sahitya Akademi of India elected Mirashi as a fellow in 1973 and he was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 1975.[1]

Mirashi died on 3 April 1985.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Padma Awards" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. 2015. Retrieved 21 July 2015.
  • Prachin Bharatiya Itihasachi Sadhane (Marathi) by Dr. Shobhana Gokhale
  • Shilahar Rajvanshacha Itihas ani Koriv Lekh (Marathi) by Dr. V.V.Mirashi
  • Books by Dr.V.V.Mirashi