ID: 96241
Full name: Pūrṇasarasvatī
Gender: Male
Year of birth: 1350 c.
Year of death: 1450 c.
Social identifiers: Śaiva
Activity years: 1350 c. - 1450 c.

Pūrṇasarasvatī was a South Indian author of the later fourteenth and early fifteenth century who is principally known for his commentaries on important works of Sanskrit literature (Kālidāsa's Meghadūta, Bhavabhūti's Mālatīmādhava, and Murāri's Anārgharāghava) as well as two poems of his own, a play called Kamalinīrājahaṃsa and a message poem called Haṃsasandeśa. He also wrote a commentary, called the Bhaktimandākinī, on the Viṣṇupādādikeśāntastotra ascribed to Śaṅkara. A few other texts have been ascribed to Pūrṇasarasvatī, but they are not at present available: these include a versified summary of Abhinavagupta's Abhinavabhāratī, called the Nāṭyavedavivṛtisaṅgraha, commentaries (Ṭīkās) on the Uttararāmacarita of Bhavabhūti and the Abhijñānaśakuntala of Kālidāsa, and an exposition of Sanskrit indeclinables called Nipātavṛtti.

Pūrṇasarasvatī was likely a native of Kerala. According to the editor's introduction of the 1947 edition of the Kamalinīrājahaṃsa, he is "generally believed to have belonged to Kāṭṭumāṭas, a family of Nampūtiri Brahmins noted for its proficiency in mantraśāstra, in the Ponani taluq of Malabar." He describes Kerala in his Kamalinīrājahaṃsa and Kāñcīpuram in his Haṃsasandeśa.

The suffix -sarasvatī indicates that he was a Śaiva daśanāmi ascetic. However, several of his works (the Haṃsasandeśa and the Bhaktimandākinī) prominently feature devotion to Viṣṇu. N. V. P. Unithiri has suggested that Viṣṇubhaṭṭa was the name of Pūrṇasarasvatī prior to his initiation, thus identifying Pūrṇasarasvatī with the author of another commentary to Murāri's Anārgharāghava (besides the Tippaṇṇi, which bears Pūrṇasarasvatī's name). H. N. Bhat disagrees with this identification.


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Last update: 12.08.2016 - 09:00
Suggested citation: Ollett A. "Pūrṇasarasvatī." Pandit. <panditproject.org/entity/96241/person>. Updated on August 12, 2016 09:00 am IST.
Contributors: Andrew Ollett