Q. Consider the following pairs:
Term                      Definition
1. Upanishads       Philosophical Enquires
2. Brahmana          Forest Texts
3. Samhita              Vedic Hymns
How many of the above given pairs is/are correctly matched?

[A] One pair only

[B] Two pairs only

[C] All three pairs

[D] None of the above

Answer: B

Explanation: Literature of the Vedic Age:

  • The main collections of Vedic hymns are called samhitas. The Rig Vedicsamhita is the earliest text.
  • The Rig Veda is dated to between 1500 and 1000 BCE. The Rig Veda contains 10 books. Books 2 to 7 are the earliest and the Books 1, 8, 9 and 10 are assigned to a later period.
  • Samhitas are ritualistic texts, and they explain the social and religious importance of rituals. Each samhita has added texts called brahmanas, which have commentaries on the hymns and rituals.
  • Each brahmana has an aranyaka (forest text) and an upanishad. The aranyakas contain mystical ritual instructions to be undertaken in secret by the sages who live in the forests. Upanishads deal with philosophical enquiries.
  • The Yajur, Sama and Atharva Vedas are dated to a slightly later period. The samhitas of the Sama, Yajur and Atharva Vedas, and the brahmanas, aranyakas and upanishads attached to the Vedas are the Late Vedic texts.
  • The Sama Veda was composed in musical notes which are considered to constitute the basis of Indian music. The Yajur Veda has rituals and hymns. The Atharva Veda contains charms and magical spells.

Source: Tamil Nadu Board Class 11