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Marathi Glossary

Abhanga - Marathi four- or -six-line verse.

Amritanubhava - a text by Jnaneshwara.

Bhajan – devotional song.

Bhaktavijaya and Bhaktilamrita - two important compilations by the 18th century pandit, Mahipati, of information on the Marathi saints.

Bhavarthadipika - also known as the Jnaneshwari, a commentary on the Bhagavad Gita written by Jnaneshwara.

Bharud - dramatic poem in Marathi, much used by Eknath.

Charita - a biography of a notable person, thus Eknath Charita.

Dasbodha - the major text by Guru Ramdas.

Daulatabad – hill fort. Also known as Devgiri, trans: Hill of the Gods. 

Dehu - town in the Pune district of Maharashtra where Tukaram lived. His temple is on the edge of the Indayani river.

Devnagiri – the standard script for Marathi and several north Indian languages including Hindi.

Dharur - a hill fort.

Fakir - Muslim holy man.

Ganapatipule - ancient pilgrim centre on the western coast of Maharashtra.

Gatha - a collection of works by an author, thus Tukaram Gatha.

Jejuri – a pilgrimage town in Maharashtra.

Jijabai – mother of Shivaji.

Johar - a form of the bharud used by Eknath.

Kirtan(a) - a sung performance of abhangas, bhajans, bharuds, in the Marathi tradition.

Kohlapur – pilgrimage town with a temple dedicated to Mahalakshmi.

Maharashtradharma - term used by Guru Ramdas to install a sense of integrity and greatness in the Maratha people.

Mahars - the untouchables of Maharashtra. Chokha is their best known saint.

Manache Shloka  - also known as Manobodha,  a text by Guru Samartha Ramdas.

Mumbai (Bombay) – major city on the west coast of Maharashtra.

Nasik – town in Maharashtra.

Naths yogis.

Ovi – verse.

Pada – verse (Sanskrit).

Paithan – pilgrimage town with a temple dedicated to Eknath. Originally known as Pratishthan, the capital of the Shalivahana kings.

Pandharpur – pilgrimage town with a temple dedicated to Lord Vithoba (Vittala).

Pandit (pundit) – scholar and teacher. 

Pasayadan - epilogue to the Jnaneshwari.

Povada - a narrative song usually chronicling heroic achievements.

Pratishthan (Paithan) -  a city in Maharashtra, once the capital of the Shalivahana kings.

Pune (Poona) – a city in Maharashtra, once the capital of the Marathas.

Purana - a sacred text.

Qadiriya – an order of Sufis active in Maharashtra.

Sant – holy person; similar, but not identical, to the English saint.

Shalivahana (a.k.a. Satavahana) - royal dynasty in Central India. Pratishthan was their capital.

Shivaji Maratha leader who unified his people.

Shloka – verse.

Shudra – lowest of the four castes in traditional Indian society.

Skanda - section (chapter) of a purana.

Stotra - prayer.

Stotramala - a collection of stotras.

Varkari  - a devotee of Vittala (the Lord) who goes on annual pilgrimage to Pandharpur.

Vedas the four oldest books in the Hindu scriptures.

Vittala (Vithoba) -  the Lord as worshipped in the Varkari tradition.

from John Noyce,   The Saints of Maharashtra (2017)

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