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Sangeeta Makaranda

Sangeeta Makaranda is a work on music and dance in Sanskrit. It is ascribed to Narada. There are several personalities known as Narada, belong to various periods from Vedic to the 16th century CE. A sage, a gandharva, an author on various branches of learning, religion and music – all bear the name of Narada. Most scholars place Sangita Makaranda between the 7th and 9th centuries CE.

The work consists of 500 verses (shlokas) divided into two chapters, one on music and another on dance.

In the chapter on music known as Sangitadhyaya (chapter on music), the author introduces many novel features regarding notes (swaras), their origin, astrological particulars, names of 22 shrutis (microtones), nada (five types of sounds), gandhara grama (minor third scale) and several types of melody (raga) classifications, including male, female and neuter melodies and a time theory of melodies.

In Nrityadhyaya (chapter on dance), the author describes about the auditorium, its size, decoration and seating arrangements, and the nine eminent scholars related to various branches of learning. Thirty-three poses of dance and one hundred and eight desi (local) talas are described.

Sangeeta Makaranda is also the title of a treatise on music and dance written by Veda. At the instance of Shahji, father of Chatrapati Shivaji maharaj, Veda write Sangita Makaranda, besides Sangita Pushpanjali. Veda was a tutor to Shambu, brother of Shivaji. The title of his work assumes more significance as King Shahji was known as ‘Makarandabhupa’.