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D.C.SIRCAR Second Revised Eiition: Dethi, 1973 Reprint: Dethi, 1998, 2004 (© MOTILAL BANARSIDASS PUBLISHERS PRIVATE LIMITED All Rights Reserved ISBN: 81-208-0879-7 Also available at: MOTILAL BANARSIDASS 41 UA. puagalow Road, Jawahar Nagar, Delhi 110.007 8 Mahalaxmi 22 Bhabha Dent Road, Mumbai 400 026 256, Oth Main Til Bios Tayanagar, Bangalore 560 011 120 Royapettah High Road, Mylapore, Chennai 600 004 Sanas Plaza, 1302 Baji Rao Road, Pune 411 002 B Camac Street, Kolkata 200 017 Ashok Rajpath, Patna 800 624 Chowk, Varanasi 221 001 Printed in India BY JAINENDRA PRAKASH JAIN AT SHRI JAINENDRA PRESS, A-45 NARAINA, PHASE-L, NEW DELHI 110 028 AND PUBLISHED BY NARENDRA PRAKASH JAIN FOR MOTILAL BANARSIDASS PUBLISHERS PRIVATE LIMITED, BUNGALOW ROAD, DELHI 110.007 PREFACE First Edition Tantric studies have not much progressed in India. The author of the present monograph originally approached the Tantra literature as a student of ancient and medieval Indian geography, although the subject under discussion in the following pages soon proved to be rzually interesting from the viewpoint of the religious life of India, A ‘Tantra text on the Sakta Pithas, entitled Pithaninya or Mahépithanir-paya, has been edited here with notes and an attempt has been made in that counection to frace the history of the Pitha conception with reference not only to the Puranic legend in theoretical explanation of the origin of the Pithas but also to the real basis of the conception itself. No less than six manu+ scripts and four published sources have been utilized in editing the Pijha~ nirnqya (Mahdpithaniripana), A reconstructed text of the original work has been given in as Appendix, while a large number of relevant texts has been quoted either in the notes or in the Appendixes. The author has also discussed, however summarily, the location of several hundrdes of tirthas or holy places, mentioned in various works as Pithas. Much, un- fortunately, still remains to be done in this di-ection. Any suggestion form the readers for the improvement of the work will be carefully considered and gratefully acknowledged. The author is extremely thankful to Prof. H. C. Raychaudhuri and Dr. J. N. Banerjea of the Calcutta University, who have taken interest in the preparation of the monograph and have offered some valuable Suggestions. His thanks are also due to Drs. R. C. Majumdar, I. B. Banerji and B. K. Ghosh for some help and suggestions. Mr. S. K. Saraswati has laid the author under a debt of gratitude by lending him a valuable manu- script (MS. G) of the Pithanimaya from his own collection. As however, the manuscript was received after the monograph had been ready for the Press, it has been utilized mainly in the notes on the text and in re- Consiructing the probable original text of the work for Appendix I—A. Finally, the author thanks the authorities and managment of the Royal Asiatic Society of Bengal and the Baptist Mission Press, Caicutta. Department of D. G. Sircar Ancient Indian History and Culture, Calcutta University, September 8, 1948,