Online Encyclopedia

HARISCHANDRA

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V12, Page 953 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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HARISCHANDRA, in Hindu mythology, the 28th king of the Solar race. He was renowned for his piety and justice. He is the central figure of legends in the Aitareyabrahmana, Mahabharata and the Markandeyapurana. In the first he is represented as so desirous of a son that he vows to Varuna that if his prayer is granted the boy shall be eventually sacrificed to the latter. The child is born, but Harischandra, after many delays, arranges to purchase another's son and make a vicarious sacrifice. According to the Mahabharata he is at last promoted to Paradise as the reward for his munificent charity.
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