Brāhmaṇa

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Brāhmaṇa (Skt., ‘that pertaining to brahman’). In Hinduism, the explanatory portion of the Veda developed as a commentary on the mantra portions of the text. Commonly they are dated between 1,000 BCE and 650 BCE. The most important are the following: the Aitareya and Kausītaki (Śāṅkhāyana) Brāhmaṇas of the Ṛg Veda; the Jaiminīya and Pañcaviṃsa (Tāṇḍyamahā) Brāhmaṇas of the Sāma Veda; the Taittirīya Brāhmaṇa of the Black and the Śaṭapatha Brāhmaṇa of the White Yajur Veda; the Gopatha Brāhmaṇa of the Atharva Veda. To the Brāhmaṇas were then added the Āraṇyakas.

Brahmana

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Brahmana in Hinduism, any of the lengthy commentaries on the Vedas, composed in Sanskrit c.900–700 bc and containing expository material relating to Vedic sacrificial ritual.