Pundravardhana - Etymology


There are several theories regarding the word ‘Pundra’. According to one theory the word ‘Pundra’ owes its origin to a disease called ‘Pandu’. The land where most of the people were suffering from that disease was called Pundrakshetra (land of Pundra). Punda is a species of sugarcane. The land where that species of sugarcane was extensively cultivated was called Pundadesa (land of Punda). According to later Vedic texts like Aitereya Aryanaka of 8th-7th century BC, the Pundra was a group of non-Aryan people who lived east of the river Sadanira. The Mahabharata also made a similar reference. In the 1st century AD, the land was mentioned as Pundravardhana for the first time in Asokadana.

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