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(fl.India, ca.1720-1740)

astronomy, mathematics.

According to legend, Jagannātha samrāat was discovered by Jayasimha of Amber during a campaign against the Marātha chief Śivājī in 1664-1665; Jagannātha was then supposed to be twenty years old. Unfortunately for the story, it was Jayasimha I, Known as Mirjā, who was involved with Śivājī; the parton of Jagannātha was Jayasimha II, Known as Savāī, who ruled Amber from 1699 to 1743. For Jayasimha II, Jagannātha translated Euclid’s Elements and Ptolemy’s Syntaxis Mathēematikēe (both in the recensions of Nasir al-Din al-Ṭūsī) from Arabic into Sanskrit as a part of Jayasimha’s program to revitalize Indian astronomy and Indian culture in general.

Jagannātha translated Enclid’s Elements under the title Rekhāaganita shortly before 1727, the date of the earliest manuscript copied at his command by Lokamani. He translated Ptolemy’s Syntaxis Mathēematikēe in 1732 under the title Siddhāantasamrāat. This contains not only a translation of al-Ṭūsī’Arabic recension but also notes of his own referring to Ulugh Beg and al-Kāshī of Samarkand as well as to Muthammad Shāah, the Mogul emperor to whom Jayasimha dedicated his Ziji-i-jadid-i MuhammadShāahī in 1728;these additions closely link jagannātha’s translation with the work of the other astronomers assembled by Jayasimha.(See essays on Indian science in Supplement.)


The Rekhāganita was edited by H. H. Dhruva and K. P. Trivedi as Bombay Sanskrit series no.61-62, 2 vols. (Bombay, 1901-1902); the Siddhāntasamrāt was edited by Rāmasvarūupa Śarman, 3 vols. (New Delhi, 1967-1969).

Secondary Literature includes Sudhākara Dvivedin, Gaṇakataranngini (Benares, 1933), repr. from Pandit, n.s. 14 (1892), 102-110; and L. J. Rocjer,“Euclid’stoicheia and Jagannātha’s Rekhāgaṇita,” in Journal of the OrientalInstitute, Baroda, 3 (1953-1954), 236-256.

David Pingree

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Jagannātha (Skt., ‘Lord of the Universe’: often Anglicized as ‘juggernaut’). Local name of the Hindu god Viṣṇu/Kṛṣṇa worshipped in the temple of Purī, Orissa. The temple is famous all over India and attracts large numbers of pilgrims, particularly to its festivals. The temple became notorious under colonial rule because of its festivals, during which period the wooden images are carried out in procession on huge wooden carts, under whose wheels some were killed, probably by accident, not suicide. However, ‘Juggernaut’ came to denote blind, religious frenzy. But with memories of the huge festival carts lingering on, a more recent application of the word is to large, heavy lorries.

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