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Vishnu Sharma was an Indian scholar and author who is believed to have written the Panchatantra collection of fables. The exact period of the composition of the Panchatantra is uncertain, and estimates vary from 1200 BCE to 300 CE. Some scholars place him in the 3rd century BCE.

Vishnu Sharma is one of the most widely translated non-religious authors in history. The prelude to the Panchatantra identifies Vishnu Sharma as the author of the work. Since there is no other independent external evidence about him, “it is impossible to say whether he was the historical author . . .or is himself a literary invention”. Based on analysis of various Indian recensions and the geographical features and animals described in the stories, Kashmir is suggested to be his birthplace by various scholars.

Following is complete collection of fables by Vishnu Sharma.

Panchatantra Introduction

First Strategy – The Loss of Friends

  1. The Monkey And The Wedge
  2. The Jackal And The Drum
  3. The Fall And Rise Of A Merchant
  4. The Foolish Sage And The Jackal
  5. The Crafty Crane And The Craftier Crab
  6. The Cunning Hare and The Witless Lion
  7. The Bug and The Poor Flea
  8. The Story of The Blue Jackal
  9. The Camel, The Jackal And The Crow
  10. The Bird Pair and The Sea
  11. Tale of The Three Fish
  12. The Elephant and The Sparrow
  13. The Lion and The Jackal
  14. Suchimukha and The Monkey
  15. How a Sparrow Came to Grief
  16. The Foolish Crane and The Mongoose
  17. The King and The Foolish Monkey

Second Strategy – Gaining Friends

  1. The Crow-Rat Discourse
  2. Meeting a New Friend
  3. The Hermit and The Mouse
  4. Shandili and Sesame Seeds
  5. Story of The Merchant’s Son
  6. The Unlucky Weaver
  7. The Rescue of a Deer

Third Strategy

  1. Of Crows And Owls
  2. Elephants and Hares
  3. The Cunning Mediator
  4. The Brahmin and The Crooks
  5. The Brahmin and The Cobra
  6. The Old Man, His Young Wife and The Thief
  7. The Tale of Two Snakes
  8. The Wedding of The Mouse
  9. Tale of The Golden Droppings
  10. Frogs That Rode a Snake

Fourth Strategy – Loss of Gains

  1. The Croc and The Monkey
  2. The Greedy Cobra and The King Of Frogs
  3. The Lion and The Foolish Donkey
  4. The Story of The Potter
  5. A Three-in-One Story
  6. The Carpenter’s Wife
  7. The Price of Indiscretion
  8. The Jackal’s Strategy

Fifth Strategy

  1. Imprudence
  2. The Brahmani and The Mongoose
  3. The Lion That Sprang to Life
  4. The Tale of Two Fish and a Frog
  5. The Story of The Weaver
  6. The Miserly Father
  7. Tale Of The Bird With Two Heads

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