Kavya and Kavi

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I know; you have revealed in the language of truth the divine words, even from the first of them. You have called your present work, a poem; Therefore it would be called a Kavyam? 72


Most scholars translate the Kavyam as a poem. However we feel that this word may misrepresent what the Maha-bharata is. While the style is certainly “poetic”, being rytmical etcetera, this is a book of history and philosophy. The content is not imaginary and a product of sentiments. Once understood this principle, we can use the term “poem”.


Some translate the word kavi as bards or poets. They were not so. The deeper meaning of this word is “those who are capable of thinking thoroughly on any subject matter”. Therefore the Kavis were not simply story tellers but sages and philosophers.



Maha-bharata, Adi Parva



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