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NB The stem form ends in 's' as distinct from, e. Monier-Williams Dictionary gives Literature review phuong etymology as: Literature and dance[ edit ] Rigveda[ edit ] The Rigveda tells of an apsara who is the wife of Gandharva ; however, the Rigveda also seems to allow for the existence of more than one Apsara.
An entire hymn deals with the colloquy between Urvashi and her mortal lover Pururavas.
The epic contains several lists of the principal Apsaras, which lists are not always identical. Here is one such list, together with a description of how the celestial dancers appeared to the residents and guests at the court of the gods: Ghritachi and Menaka and Rambha and Purvachitti and Swayamprabha and Urvashi and Misrakeshi and Dandagauri and Varuthini and Gopali and Sahajanya and Kumbhayoni and Prajagara and Chitrasena and Chitralekha and Saha and Madhuraswana, these and others by thousands, possessed of eyes like lotus leaves, who were employed in enticing the hearts of persons practising rigid austerities, danced there.
And possessing slim waists and fair large hips, they began to perform various evolutions, shaking their deep bosoms, and casting their glances around, and exhibiting other attractive attitudes capable of stealing the hearts and resolutions and minds of the spectators.
The Nymph and the Sage[ edit ] A story type or theme appearing over and over again in the Mahabharata is that of an Apsara sent to distract a sage or spiritual master from his ascetic practices.
One story embodying this theme is that recounted by the epic heroine Shakuntala to explain her own parentage. Deciding that the sage would have to be distracted from his penances, he sent the apsara Menaka to work her charms.
Menaka trembled at the thought of angering such a powerful ascetic, but she obeyed the god's order. As she approached Viswamitrathe wind god Vayu tore away her garments.
Seeing her thus disrobed, the sage abandoned himself to lust.
Nymph and sage engaged in sex for some time, during which Viswamitra's asceticism was put on hold. As a consequence, Menaka gave birth to a daughter, whom she abandoned on the banks of a river. That daughter was Shakuntala herself, the narrator of the story.
Natya Shastra[ edit ] Natya Shastrathe principal work of dramatic theory for Sanskrit drama, lists the following apsaras: Khmer Apsara dancers Apsaras represent an important motif in the stone bas-reliefs of the Angkorian temples in Cambodia 8th—13th centuries ADhowever all female images are not considered to be apsaras.
In harmony with the Indian association of dance with apsaras, Khmer female figures that are dancing or are poised to dance are considered apsaras; female figures, depicted individually or in groups, who are standing still and facing forward in the manner of temple guardians or custodians are called devatas.
An indigenous ballet-like performance art of Cambodia, is frequently called " Apsara Dance ". The dance was created by the Royal Ballet of Cambodia in the midth century under the patronage of Queen Sisowath Kossamak of Cambodia.
The role of the apsara is played by a woman, wearing tight-fitting traditional dress with gilded jewelries and headress modelled after Angkor bas-reliefs,  whose graceful, sinuous gestures are codified to narrate classical myths or religious stories.
The bidadaris are heavenly maidens,  living in the svargaloka or in celestial palace of Indradescribed in Balinese dedari bidadari or apsara dance. They are well known for their special task: This theme occurs frequently in Javanese traditions, including the Kakawin Arjunawiwahawritten by mpu Kanwa in during the reign of king Airlangga.
The story tells that Arjunain order to defeat the giant Niwatakawaca, engaged in meditation and asceticism, whereupon Indra sent apsaras to seduce him. Arjuna, however, managed to conquer his lust and then to win the ultimate weapons from the gods to defeat the giant.
The Balinese Legong dance depict celestial maidens, BaliIndonesia. Later in the Javanese tradition the apsara was also called Hapsari, also known as Widodari from sanskrit word vidhyadhari, vidhya:Author Testimonials “We recently published an original article in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences: Special Issue Molecular Mechanism of Alzheimer's Disease.
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