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Name of a canonical collection of Sanskrit (Hindu) as well as Pali (Buddhist) animal fables in verse and prose.
The Panchatantra is an ancient Indian inter-related collection of animal fables in verse and prose, in a frame story format. The original Sanskrit work, which some scholars believe was composed in the 3rd century BCE, is attributed to Vishnu Sharma. It is based on older oral traditions, including "animal fables that are as old as we are able to imagine". It is "certainly the most frequently translated literary product of India", and these stories are among the most widely known in the world. To quote Edgerton: Thus it goes by many names in many cultures. In India, it had at least 25 recensions, including the Sanskrit Tantrākhyāyikā and inspired the Hitopadesha. It was translated into Middle Persian in 570 CE by Borzūya. This became the basis for a Syriac translation as Kalilag and Damnag and a translation into Arabic in 750 CE by Persian scholar Abdullah Ibn al-Muqaffa as Kalīlah wa Dimnah. A New Persian version from the 12th century became known as Kalīleh o Demneh and this was the basis of Kashefi's 15th century Anvār-e Soheylī. The book in different form is also known as The Fables of Bidpai or The Morall Philosophie of Doni.
The Nuttall Encyclopedia
an old collection of fables and stories originally in Sanskrit, and versions of which have passed into all the languages of India, have appeared in different forms, and been associated with different names.
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"panchatantra." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2016. Web. 10 Feb. 2016. <http://www.definitions.net/definition/panchatantra>.