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Manasara Series [Sanskrit text with English translation] - 7 Volumes

by Prasanna Kumar Acharya

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$281.49 $211.12

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Volume I: Dictionary of Hindu Architecture

The treatise contining knowledge and experience in town-planning, Architecture, sculpture etc. of ancient India.

The book is the outcome of years of studious research carried out by the Author tobring this vast, but almost forgotton, treasure-house within easy reach of all. the present volume is a dictionary which devotes itself exclusively to the terminology of Hindu Architecture.

Here the word architecture encompasses all activities of man connected with the satisfaction of one of his basic needs i.e., shelter.

Volume II:  Indian Architecture According to Manasara-Silpasastra - Manasara Series 2

This volume entitled Indian Architecture according to Manasara-Silpasastra is the second in the series of Professor P.K. Acharya's Manasara Series.

Here he has discussed exhaustively the question, waht is Manasara? An understanding of this term Manasara is essential; for buildings are the yard-sticks by which the achievements and standards of living of bygone ages can be correctly evaluated. But this term defies elucidation; for it not only embraces all activities connected with the construction of private dwellings, public edifices, forts and other multipurpose structures but also includes other functions like designing chariots, gardens, vehicles, furniture and so on; even town and village planning are not left out. As words, like humans, age their meaning and usage change with time.

Consequently, to ascertain their true significance, one has to wade through a mass of literature belonging to different periods. The author has surveyed the whole gamut of Sanskrit literature from the Vedic to the Gupta periods to bring out clearly the various connotations of the word Manasara. He has provided summaries and synopses of extant texts. He has compared the important features of Manasara with those of Vitruvius' classic for the benefit to those interested in the comparative study of architecture. He has thrown light on the age and language of Manasara.

All those interested in Indian architecture shall find this an invaluable time saver; for it encapsulates the information lying scattered in several works.

Volume III: Manasara on Architecture and Sculpture : Sanskrit Text with Critical Notes - Manasara Series 3

The ancient monuments of India possess that quality of leaving a lasting impact on the mind of the beholder and awakening his spirit. Their irresistible appeal has resulted in the creation of a vast literature dealing mostly with their aesthetic aspects. The technical aspect was neglected; for information on this subject was scarce and available only in the manuscripts with private owners scattered all over India.

 Undaunted by the dismal prospect before him, Prasanna Kumar Acharya ventured in this untrodden field and after years of diligent search and study, prepared the work: Manasara on Architecture and Sculpture.

This contains the Sanskrit text of the building science studied by the architects of ancient India. Critical notes on every chapter are provided for an easier understanding of the text. Everyone interested in the Architecture of ancient India shall find this book as the most authoritative on the subject.

Volume IV: Architecture of Manasara : Translated from Original Sanskrit - Manasara Series 4


  •  Preface
  1. The contents
  2. The qualifications of architects and the system of measurement
  3. The classification of architecture
  4. The selection of site
  5. The examination of soil
  6. Erection of Gnomons (for Orientation of buildings) and pegs (for foundation)
  7. The site plans
  8. The sacrificial offerings
  9. The village
  10. The towns and forts
  11. The dimensions of buildings
  12. The foundation
  13. The pedestals of columns
  14. The bases of columns
  15. The columns
  16. The entablatures and roofs
  17. Joinery
  18. The general features of edifices
  19. The one-storeyed buildings
  20. The two-storeyed buildings
  21. The three-storeyed buildings
  22. The four-storeyed buildings
  23. The five-storeyed buildings
  24. The six-storeyed buildings
  25. The seven-storeyed buildings
  26. The eight storeyed buildings
  27. The nine-storeyed buildings
  28. The ten-storeyed buildings
  29. The eleven-storeyed buildings
  30. The twelve-storeyed buildings
  31. The courts
  32. The temples of attendant deities
  33. The gate houses and the windows
  34. The pavilions
  35. The storeyed mansions
  36. The situation and measurement of dwelling houses
  37. The opening of the dwelling house
  38. The doorways
  39. The measurement of doors
  40. The Royal Palaces
  41. The Royal Entourage
  42. The Royal orders and Ensignia
  43. The cars and chariots
  44. The couches, bedsteads, and swings
  45. The thrones
  46. The arches
  47. The Central Theatre
  48. The Ornamental tree
  49. The crowns
  50. The personal ornaments and house furniture
  51. The triad
  52. The Phalli
  53. The altars
  54. The female deities
  55. The Jain images
  56. The Buddhist images
  57. The images of the sages
  58. The images of the mythical beings
  59. The images of the devotees
  60. The goose
  61. The Garuda image
  62. The bull
  63. The lion
  64. The comparative measures of images
  65. The largest ten tala measures
  66. The intermediate ten tala measures
  67. The measures along the plumb lines
  68. The casting of idols in wax
  69. The penalties for defective construction
  70. The chiselling of the eye.
  71. Index.

Prasanna Kumar Acharya's Architecture of Manasara is the fourth volume in the Manasara series. Here the Sanskrit text, collated from eleven manuscripts, is rendered in English with as much conformity to the original as possible. All aspects of architecture as taught and practised by the ancient builders, whose epics on stone in various parts of India can seen even today, are described in this book.

The remarkable attention to detail, which was the outstanding trait in the forgotten architects of the past emerges lucidly in this concise treatise, where every topic-be it the unit of measurement, choice of site, analysis of soil, strength of building materials, proportion among the various components, planning of villagers or towns, design and construction of single-storeyed houses or multi-storeyed mansions, furniture for use or sculpture for ornament-though presented in an encapsulated form rivers the reader's attention by its dazzling illumination.

One of the basic needs of man is shelter. All those interested or engaged in the designs of buildings for different puposes like housing the Gods, people, trade, transport, machines and weapons shall find this book a source of inspiration for their activities.

Volume V:  Architecture of Manasara : Illustrations of Architectural and Sculptural Objects - Manasara Series 5

This is the fifth volume in the Architecture of Manasara series by Prasanna Kumar Acharya. It contains well over hundred plates exclusively devoted to the illustration of the text in the other volumes. Every aspect of architecture, from the insignificant one of fixing a peg to the elaborate construction of a multi-storeyed structure, is taken care of.

The noteworthy feature is the minute attention and great care lavished in the preparation of drawings to clarify:

  • The choice of sites for locating villages, towns and forts
  • The abodes for all, be they human, semi-divine or divine, Hindu, Buddhist or Jain
  • The structural parts like the foundations, basement, columns and entablature
  • The components like niches, windows and doors
  • The parts such as the functional living room, the utilitarian gate-house and the ornamental pavilion
  • The furniture like the couch, bed-stead and throne
  • The vehicles for usual transport, rigorous battle and ceremonial display

The view-plan, section and elevation-are drawn to scale. Brief descriptions are added wherever necessary. No effort is spared to help in obtaining a clear and quick grasp of the topic.

Research scholars, architects. engineers, designers and conservators shall find this volume highly useful in comprehending ancient Indian architecture.

Volume VI:  Hindu Architecture in India and Abroad - Manasara Series 6


  1. Preface
  2. Introduction
  3. I. Pre Vedic Architecture/Mohenjo-Daro
    1. Harappa
    2. Jhukun
    3. Johi, Sehwan and Kohistan
    4. Baluchistan
    5. Waziristan
  4. II. Vedic Architecture:
    1. Vedas
    2. Brahmanas and Suras
  5. III. Classical or Post-Vedic Architecture:
    1. Buddhist architecture
    2. Jain architecture
    3. Brahmanical architecture:
      i. Epics
      ii. Puranas
      iii. Agamas
      iv. Miscellaneous treatises
  6. IV. Silpa-Sastra:
    1. Manasara
    2. Mayamata
    3. Amsumadbheda of Kasyapa
    4. Visvakarma
    5. Agastya
    6. Sanatkumara
    7. Mandana
    8. Srikumara
    9. Samarangana-Sutradhara of King Bhojadeva
    10. Samgraha
  7. V. Positions of the Manasara in Literature
  8. VI. Manasara and Vitruvius
  9. VII. Age of the Manasara
  10. VIII. Hindu Architecture in Border Lands:
    1. Tibet
    2. Sikkim
    3. Nepal
    4. Kashmir
    5. Kangra
    6. Ceylon
  11. IX. Hindu Architecture in Serindia:
    1. Khotan
    2. Tun-Huang region
    3. Swat
  12. X. Hindu Architecture in Insulindia:
    1. Burma
    2. Siam
    3. Champa
    4. Cambodia
    5. Sumatra
    6. Celebes
    7. Bali
    8. Borneo
    9. Java
  13. XI. Hindu Architecture in Outer India:
    1. China
    2. Japan
    3. Central America.
  14. Appendices:
    1. Indo-Persian architecture
    2. The future of Indian architecture
    3. What others think:
      1. Dr. Tagore
      2. Dr. Chintamani
      3. Prof. Keith
      4. Mr. Hargreaves
      5. M.M. Dr. Jha
      6. Mr. Ramananda Chatterji
      7. Mr. Frederick Grubb
      8. Prof. Vogel
      9. Dr. Aiyangar
      10. Mr. Natesan
      11. Prof. Otto Stein
      12. Silpasiddhanti Siddhalinga Swami
      13. Raja Sripratap Singh
      14. The times literary supplement
      15. League of nations-information meusuelles
      16. Pravasi
      17. Visal Bharat
      18. Hindustani
  15. Index.

The city, be it Mohenjo-Daro the earliest or Chandigarh the latest, has held Man in thrall from the time it came into existence. Its public edifices, private mansions, lofty shrines, renowned schools, famous monasteries, crowded haunts and popular festivals have attracted poeople from far and wide.

The Indians of old Hindus, Buddhists and Jains were aware that the city is the embryo of culture and civilization; for it provided the impetus to poets, dramatists, philosophers and artists to attain immortality through their creations. So, they codified all their knowledge and experience in town-planning and architecture into the treatise known as Manasara, for the edification of posterity.

Prof. P.K. Acharya has devoted years of study and research to bring this vast, but almost forgotten, treasure-house within easy reach of all. This book Hindu Architecture in India and Abroad is the sixth volume in his Manasara series. It brings out in no uncertain terms that indigenous ideas of design and techniques of construction alone have imparted the qualities unabating vigour and having beauty to the surviving ancient temples which have withstood the onslaught of vandals, time and nature.

The Swastika mansion, described in the preface, attests to the relevance of the principles enunciated in the Manasara, notwithstanding popular notions to the contrary, to modern conditions and needs.

Volume VII: Encyclopaedia of Hindu Architecture - Manasara Series 7


  1. Foreword
  2. Preface
    1. The order of Roman characters and the method of transliteration adopted
    2. List of illustration
    3. Text of the encyclopaedia
  3. Appendices: 
    1. A sketch of Sanskrit treatise on architecture
    2. A list of historical architects with short
  4. Notes on their works
  5. Bibliography
  6. Index to modern architectural terms with their corresponding Sanskrit equivalents.

P.K. Acharya's An Encyclopaedia of Hindu Architecture is a comprehensive work on the technical terminology, now obsolete but then in vogue, of the creators of such epics in stone as those of Sanchi and Konark during the ancient and medieval periods of Indian history. It contains about three thousand terms culled, with indefatigable industry spread over a long span of years, from ancient architectural treatises-Manasara, and Vastu-Sastras-, Agamas, Puranas, Brahmanas, Sutras, epics, literary works, epigraphical records and manuscripts in obscure scripts. The terms are arranged in the order of Sanskrit alphabet.

A brief rendering in English followed by extensive quotations from various sources and supplemented by line drawings and photographs elucidate every aspect of the term, leaving no room for ambiguity. Two appendices, one giving a sketch of Sanskrit treatises on architecture and the other furnishing a list of historical architects with short notes on their works, are added.

This monumental work has remained a standard treatise of reference since its publication in 1946 for all connected with architecture.





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Title: Manasara Series [Sanskrit text with English translation] - 7 Volumes
Author(s): Prasanna Kumar Acharya
Language: English
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