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  • prasada (Hinduism)

    Prasada, (Sanskrit: “favour” or “grace”) in Hinduism, food and water offered to a deity during worship (puja). It is believed that the deity partakes of and then returns the offering, thereby consecrating it. The offering is then distributed and eaten by the worshippers. The efficacy of the prasada

  • prasangika (Buddhism)

    Buddhapālita: …century), the founder of the Prāsaṅgika school of Buddhism, mainly distinguished by its method of argumentation, similar to the Socratic dialogue. Buddhapālita wrote one of the early commentaries on the Akutobhaya (“The Safe One”) by the famous monk Nāgārjuna. Today, however, both the commentary and the original are available only…

  • Prasannapadā (work by Candrakīrti)

    Candrakīrti: …wrote the famous commentary the Prasannapadā (“The Clear Worded”) on the thought of the Buddhist sage Nāgārjuna. Although there were several earlier commentaries explaining Nāgārjuna, Candrakīrti’s became the most authoritative; it is the only one that has been preserved in its original Sanskrit (other commentaries are available only in Tibetan…

  • prasavya (Hindu rite)

    pradakshina: …shoulder toward the central object—called prasavya, is observed in funeral ceremonies.

  • prase (mineral)

    Prase, translucent, leek-green variety of the silica mineral chalcedony (q.v.). Coloured by hornblende fibres and chlorite, it was used by the ancients for engravings. Prase has been found at numerous

  • praseodymium (chemical element)

    Praseodymium (Pr), chemical element, a rare-earth metal of the lanthanide series of the periodic table. Praseodymium is a moderately soft, ductile, and malleable silvery white metal. It rapidly displaces hydrogen from water in diluted acids (except hydrofluoric acid [HF]) and slowly oxidizes in

  • Prashastapada (Indian philosopher)

    Indian philosophy: The old school: …as early as the commentators Prashastapada (5th century ce) and Uddyotakara (7th century ce) the authors of the Nyaya-Vaisheshika schools used each other’s doctrines and the fusion of the two schools was well on its way, the two schools continued to have different authors and lines of commentators. About the…

  • Prasinophyceae (class of green algae)

    algae: Annotated classification: Class Prasinophyceae (Micromonadophyceae) Paraphyletic, primarily marine; includes Micromonas (sometimes placed in Mamiellophyceae), Ostreococcus, and Pyramimonas. Class Ulvophyceae Primarily marine; includes Acetabularia,

  • Praslin Island (island, Seychelles)

    Praslin Island, island, second largest of the Seychelles archipelago, Republic of Seychelles, in the western Indian Ocean. The island is 2.5 miles (4 km) wide and 7 miles (11 km) long and is 25 miles (40 km) northeast of Mahé Island. Praslin is granitic in origin and mountainous. Seven percent of

  • prasmanan (Indonesian meal)
  • Prasopora (fossil bryozoan genus)

    Prasopora, extinct genus of bryozoans, small colonial animals that formed mosslike or encrusting growths, especially characteristic of the Ordovician Period (488.3 million to 443.7 million years ago). Prasopora generally is characterized by caplike colonies domed on top and flat on the bottom. The

  • Prasutagus (king of the Iceni)

    Boudicca: Prasutagus, was king of the Iceni (in what is now Norfolk) as a client under Roman suzerainty. When Prasutagus died in 60 with no male heir, he left his private wealth to his two daughters and to the emperor Nero, trusting thereby to win imperial…

  • Prat, Si (Thai poet)

    Southeast Asian arts: First golden age: King Narai (1657–88): …the most famous were Maharajaguru; Si Prat, a wild young gallant who wrote the romantic poem Aniruddha (the name of the hero of the poem) and some passionate love songs; Khun Devakavi, author of cradle-songs using many Sanskrit and Khmer words but modeled on the Burmese ayegyin; and Si Mahosot,…

  • Prata (work by Suetonius)

    Suetonius: An encyclopaedia called Prata (“Meadows”), a work like the Natural History of Pliny the Elder, was attributed to him and often quoted in late antiquity.

  • Pratāpasiṃha (Indian ruler)

    India: The south: Travancore and Mysore: The reign of Pratapasimha (1739–63) marks the beginning of Thanjavur’s slide into fiscal ruin. Here again it was the mounting costs of war and the intrusive presence of the Europeans on the coast that triggered the crisis.

  • Pratapgarh (district, India)

    Pratapgarh, district, southeast-central Uttar Pradesh state, northern India. Part of the great alluvial Indo-Gangetic Plain, it is bounded on the southwest by the Ganges (Ganga) River and drained by one of its tributaries, the Sai River. The district is fertile and partially forested, although

  • Pratchett, Sir Terence David John (English author)

    Terry Pratchett, English author, predominantly of humorous fantasy and science fiction, best known for his Discworld series. Pratchett was raised in Buckinghamshire, the son of an engineer and a secretary. He became enamoured with science fiction and fantasy at a young age and published his first

  • Pratchett, Terry (English author)

    Terry Pratchett, English author, predominantly of humorous fantasy and science fiction, best known for his Discworld series. Pratchett was raised in Buckinghamshire, the son of an engineer and a secretary. He became enamoured with science fiction and fantasy at a young age and published his first

  • Pratensis, Felix (editor)

    biblical literature: Printed editions: …medieval Jewish commentaries—was edited by Felix Pratensis and published by Daniel Bomberg (Venice, 1516/17). The second edition, edited by Jacob ben Hayyim ibn Adonijah and issued by Bomberg in four volumes (Venice, 1524/25), became the prototype of future Hebrew Bibles down to the 20th century. It contained a vast text-critical…

  • Prater (park, Vienna, Austria)

    Vienna: Layout and architecture: …is the famous 3,200-acre (1,295-hectare) Prater, formerly the hunting and riding preserve of the aristocracy but since 1766 a public park whose amenities include a stadium, fairgrounds, racetracks, and many restaurants. Beyond another ring road, the Gürtel, lie the outer suburbs (districts X–XX), which are largely residential. Also beyond the…

  • Prater, David (American music duo)

    Sam and Dave, American vocal duo who were among the most popular performers of soul music in the late 1960s and whose gritty, gospel-drenched style typified the Memphis Sound. Samuel Moore (b. Oct. 12, 1935, Miami, Fla., U.S.) and David Prater (b. May 9, 1937, Ocilla, Ga.—d. April 9, 1988) were

  • Prati, Giovanni (Italian author)

    Aleardo, Count Aleardi: …also edited, with the poet Giovanni Prati, an outspoken journal, Il Caffè Pedrocchi. The Austrians imprisoned him twice (1852 and 1859) and finally sent him into exile.

  • Pratica della mercatura (work by Pegolotti)

    Francesco Balducci Pegolotti: …as the author of the Pratica della mercatura (“Practice of Marketing”), which provides an excellent picture of trade and travel in his day.

  • Pratica di fabricar scene e macchine ne’ teatri (work by Sabbatini)

    Nicola Sabbatini: …major and most-enduring written work, Pratica di fabricar scene e macchine ne’ teatri (1638; “Manual for Constructing Scenes and Machines in the Theatre”), Sabbatini described contemporary theatrical techniques, including those used for stage lighting. He demonstrated, for instance, how a bank of stage lights could be illuminated or dimmed simultaneously…

  • Pratica di Mare (Italy)

    Lavinium, an ancient town of Latium (modern Pratica di Mare, Italy), 19 miles (30 kilometres) south of Rome, regarded as the religious centre of the early Latin peoples. Roman tradition maintained that it had been founded by Aeneas and his followers from Troy and named after his wife, Lavinia. Here

  • Pratihara dynasty (Indian history)

    Gurjara-Pratihara dynasty, either of two dynasties of medieval Hindu India. The line of Harichandra ruled in Mandor, Marwar (Jodhpur, Rajasthan), during the 6th to 9th centuries ce, generally with feudatory status. The line of Nagabhata ruled first at Ujjain and later at Kannauj during the 8th to

  • pratima (Hinduism)

    Pratima, (Sanskrit: “image” or “likeness” of a deity) in Hinduism, a sacred image or depiction of a deity. By depicting the deity with multiple heads, arms, or eyes or with animal features, the image, or icon, represents the deity’s many different aspects and powers. It serves as a vehicle through

  • pratima (Jainism)

    Jainism: Religious activity of the laity: …a layman’s spiritual progress, or pratima (“statue”). Medieval writers conceived pratima as a ladder leading to higher stages of spiritual development. The last two stages lead logically to renunciation of the world and assumption of the ascetic life.

  • prātimokṣa (Buddhism)

    Pātimokkha, (Pāli: “that which is binding”, ) Buddhist monastic code; a set of 227 rules that govern the daily activities of the monk and nun. The prohibitions of the pātimokkha are arranged in the Pāli canon according to the severity of the offense—from those that require immediate and lifelong

  • pratincole (bird)

    Pratincole, any of six or seven Old World shorebird species constituting the subfamily Glareolinae of the family Glareolidae, which also includes the coursers. Pratincoles are about 20 cm (8 inches) long and are brown with a white rump; the tail is forked, and the wings are long and pointed.

  • Pratique du théâtre, La (work by Aubignac)

    François Hédelin, abbé d'Aubignac: …La Pratique du théâtre (1657; The Whole Art of the Stage, 1684), was commissioned by Richelieu and is based on the idea that the action on stage must have credibility (vraisemblance) in the eyes of the audience. Aubignac proposed, among other things, that the whole play should take place as…

  • pratirūpadharma (Buddhism)

    mappō: …“copied law” (Sanskrit pratirupadharma, Japanese zōbō); and the age of the “latter law,” or the “degeneration of the law” (Sanskrit pashchimadharma, Japanese mappō). A new period, in which the true faith will again flower, will be ushered in some time in the future by the bodhisattva (“buddha-to-be”) Maitreya (Japanese Miroku).

  • prātiśākhya (Hinduism)

    Hinduism: The Vedangas: …these variations were recorded in pratishakhyas (literally, “instructions for the shakhas” [“branches”]), four of which are extant—(2) chandas (metre), of which there remains only one late representative, (3) vyakarana (analysis and derivation), in which the language is grammatically described—Panni’s grammar (c. 400 bce) and the pratishakhyas are the oldest examples…

  • pratitya-samutpada (Buddhism)

    Paticca-samuppada, (Pali: “dependent origination”) the chain, or law, of dependent origination, or the chain of causation—a fundamental concept of Buddhism describing the causes of suffering (dukkha; Sanskrit duhkha) and the course of events that lead a being through rebirth, old age, and death.

  • Prato (Italy)

    Prato, town, in the Toscana (Tuscany) regione of north-central Italy. It lies along the Bisenzio River, 8 miles (13 km) northwest of Florence. Prato, of uncertain origin, became a free commune in the 11th century and prospered as a centre of commerce and wool manufacture. Later drawn into the orbit

  • Prato della Valle (piazza, Padua, Italy)

    Padua: …the botanic garden is the Prato della Valle, a large oval piazza surrounded by a canal and bordered by a group of statues of well-known Paduans.

  • Prato in Toscana (Italy)

    Prato, town, in the Toscana (Tuscany) regione of north-central Italy. It lies along the Bisenzio River, 8 miles (13 km) northwest of Florence. Prato, of uncertain origin, became a free commune in the 11th century and prospered as a centre of commerce and wool manufacture. Later drawn into the orbit

  • Pratolini, Vasco (Italian author)

    Vasco Pratolini, Italian short-story writer and novelist, known particularly for compassionate portraits of the Florentine poor during the Fascist era. He is considered a major figure in Italian Neorealism. Pratolini was reared in Florence, the setting of nearly all his fiction, in a poor family.

  • Pratt & Whitney (American company)

    United Technologies Corporation: …two major aerospace business units—Pratt & Whitney and UTC Aerospace Systems, which was formed from the merger of Hamilton Sundstrand and B.F. Goodrich. Pratt & Whitney makes turbofan and turboprop engines, liquid- and solid-fuel rocket engines, and industrial gas turbines; it is one of the world’s leading builders of…

  • Pratt hypothesis (geology)

    isostasy: The Pratt hypothesis, developed by John Henry Pratt, English mathematician and Anglican missionary, supposes that Earth’s crust has a uniform thickness below sea level with its base everywhere supporting an equal weight per unit area at a depth of compensation. In essence, this says that areas…

  • Pratt Institute (school, New York City, New York, United States)

    Pratt Institute, private, coeducational institution of higher learning in the Brooklyn borough of New York, New York, U.S. It comprises schools of Architecture, Art and Design (for which it is especially renowned), Liberal Arts and Sciences, and Professional Studies and the graduate school of

  • Pratt model (geology)

    isostasy: The Pratt hypothesis, developed by John Henry Pratt, English mathematician and Anglican missionary, supposes that Earth’s crust has a uniform thickness below sea level with its base everywhere supporting an equal weight per unit area at a depth of compensation. In essence, this says that areas…

  • Pratt truss bridge (engineering)

    truss bridge: History and uses: …most commonly used are the Pratt and the Warren; in the former the sloping web members are parallel to each other, while in the latter they alternate in direction of slope.

  • Pratt, Caroline (American educator)

    Play School Movement: …century by progressive American educator Caroline Pratt and based on the belief that children create and test their knowledge of the world through play. Approaching education as a multisensory endeavour, Pratt opened the Play School in New York City in the autumn of 1914.

  • Pratt, Charles Edward (British actor)

    Boris Karloff, English actor who became internationally famous for his sympathetic and chilling portrayal of the monster in the classic horror film Frankenstein (1931). Karloff, the youngest of nine children born to Edward and Eliza Pratt, deliberately failed a consular service exam in order to

  • Pratt, Charles, 1st Earl Camden (British jurist)

    Charles Pratt, 1st Earl Camden, English jurist who, as chief justice of the Court of Common Pleas (1761–66), refused to enforce general warrants (naming no particular person to be arrested). As lord chancellor of Great Britain (1766–70), he opposed the government’s North American colonial policy of

  • Pratt, Christopher (Canadian artist)

    flag of Newfoundland and Labrador: …designer, the renowned Newfoundland artist Christopher Pratt, its white is for snow and ice, blue for the sea, red for human effort, and yellow for self-confidence. The blue areas suggest the importance of British heritage, while red and yellow in the shape of a “golden arrow” stand for the future.…

  • Pratt, Dennis Charles (British author and raconteur)

    Quentin Crisp, (Dennis Charles Pratt), British author, performer, and raconteur who transcended physical abuse and poverty during his early years as a commercial artist, male prostitute, and nude artists’ model to achieve international celebrity in 1968 with the publication of his witty and candid

  • Pratt, E. J. (Canadian poet)

    E.J. Pratt, the leading Canadian poet of his time. The son of a Methodist clergyman, Pratt was trained for the ministry as a youth and taught and preached before enrolling at Victoria College in the University of Toronto (1907). He graduated in philosophy (1911) and took up the study of theology,

  • Pratt, Edwin John (Canadian poet)

    E.J. Pratt, the leading Canadian poet of his time. The son of a Methodist clergyman, Pratt was trained for the ministry as a youth and taught and preached before enrolling at Victoria College in the University of Toronto (1907). He graduated in philosophy (1911) and took up the study of theology,

  • Pratt, Francis Ashbury (American inventor)

    Francis Ashbury Pratt, American inventor. With Amos Whitney he founded the Pratt & Whitney Co. in Hartford to manufacture machine tools. Pratt was instrumental in bringing about the adoption of a standard system of gauges. He also invented a metal-planing machine (1869), a gear cutter (1884), and a

  • Pratt, John Jeffreys (British politician)

    John Jeffreys Pratt, 1st Marquess Camden, lord lieutenant (viceroy) of Ireland from 1795 to 1798, when his repressive actions touched off a major rebellion against British rule. After serving as a lord of the British Admiralty (1782–89) and Treasury (1789–94) and inheriting his father’s earldom of

  • Pratt, Richard (American educator)

    Native American: Boarding schools: ) founder Richard Pratt, who in 1892 described his mission as “Kill the Indian in him, and save the man.” Such sentiments persisted for decades; in 1920 Duncan Campbell Scott, the superintendent of the Canadian residential school system, noted his desire to have the schools “continue until…

  • Pratt, William Henry (British actor)

    Boris Karloff, English actor who became internationally famous for his sympathetic and chilling portrayal of the monster in the classic horror film Frankenstein (1931). Karloff, the youngest of nine children born to Edward and Eliza Pratt, deliberately failed a consular service exam in order to

  • Prattsburg (North Carolina, United States)

    Durham, city, seat (1881) of Durham county, north-central North Carolina, U.S. It is situated about 10 miles (16 km) northeast of Chapel Hill and 25 miles (40 km) northwest of Raleigh, the three cities forming one of the state’s major urban areas—the Research Triangle. The first settlement (about

  • Pratum spirituale (work by Moschus)

    Sophronius: …tract on the religious life, Leimōn ho Leimōnon (Greek: “The Spiritual Meadow”). On the death of Moschus in Rome (619), Sophronius accompanied the body back to Jerusalem for monastic burial. He traveled to Alexandria, Egypt, and to Constantinople during 633 to persuade the respective patriarchs to renounce Monothelitism, a heterodox…

  • Pratyabhijna (Indian philosophy)

    Kashmiri Shaivism, religious and philosophical system of India that worships the god Shiva as the supreme reality. The school is idealistic and monistic, as contrasted with the realistic and dualistic school of Shaiva-siddhanta. The principal texts of the school are the Shiva-sutra, said to have

  • pratyahara (Yoga)

    Pratyahara, (Sanskrit: “withdrawal [of the senses]”) in the Yoga system of Indian philosophy, the fifth of the eight stages intended to lead the aspirant to samadhi, the state of perfect concentration. The goal of pratyahara is to arrest the reaction of the senses to external objects, thus helping

  • pratyaksha (Indian philosophy)

    Pratyaksha, (Sanskrit: “that which is before one’s eyes”) in Indian philosophy, perception, the first of the five means of knowledge, or pramanas, that enable a person to have correct cognitions of the world. Pratyaksha is of two kinds, direct perception (anubhava) and remembered perception

  • pratyaya (Buddhist philosophy)

    Pratyaya, (Sanskrit: “cause”) in Buddhist philosophy, an auxiliary, indirect cause, as distinguished from a direct cause (hetu). A seed, for example, is a direct cause of a plant, while sunshine, water, and earth are auxiliary causes of a plant. Sometimes pratyaya means the cause in general.

  • pratyeka-buddha (Buddhism)

    Pratyeka-buddha, (Sanskrit: “independent, or separate, buddha”) in Buddhism, one who attains enlightenment through his own efforts, as distinct from one who reaches the goal by listening to the teachings of a buddha. The pratyeka-buddha, who is not omniscient and cannot enlighten others, is to be

  • pratyeka-buddhayāna (Buddhism)

    Buddhism: Tiantai/Tendai: …appropriate for becoming an arhat; pratyeka-buddhayana, the way of those who aim at salvation for themselves alone; and bodhisattvayana, the way of those (the bodhisattvas) who, on the point of attaining salvation, give it up to work for the salvation of all other beings. All are forms of the one…

  • Pratylenchus (nematode genus)

    plant disease: Nematode diseases: Root-lesion nematodes (Pratylenchus species), cosmopolitan in distribution, are endoparasites that cause severe losses to hundreds of different crop and ornamental plants by penetrating roots and making their way through the tissues, breaking down the cells as they feed. They deposit eggs from which new colonies…

  • prau (boat)

    Prau, fast, sharp-ended rowing or sailing boat that is widely used in Malayan waters and was once popular with Malayan pirates. The prau is long and narrow, rigged with one or two fore-and-aft sails. Modern praus are generally open and relatively small. In earlier times the boats were decked and

  • Prausnitz-Küstner antibody (biochemistry)

    Reagin, type of antibody found in the serum and skin of allergically hypersensitive persons and in smaller amounts in the serum of normally sensitive persons. Most reaginic antibodies are the immunoglobulin E (IgE) fraction in the blood. Reagins are easily destroyed by heating, do not pass the

  • Pravarasena (Vakataka ruler)

    Vakataka dynasty: …the reign of his son Pravarasena I, who came to the throne about 270 and reached the Narmada River in the north by annexing the kingdom of Purika.

  • Pravda (Soviet newspaper)

    Pravda, (Russian: “Truth”) newspaper that was the official organ of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1918 to 1991. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, numerous publications and Web sites continued under the Pravda name. Pravda published its first issue on May 5, 1912, in Saint

  • Pravoslaviye, Samoderzhaviye, i Narodnost (Russian slogan)

    Orthodoxy, Autocracy, and Nationality, in Russian history, slogan created in 1832 by Count Sergey S. Uvarov, minister of education 1833–49, that came to represent the official ideology of the imperial government of Nicholas I (reigned 1825–55) and remained the guiding principle behind government

  • pravrajyā (Buddhism)

    Pabbajjā, (Pāli: “to wander forth”, ) Buddhist rite of ordination by which a layman becomes a novice (Pāli sāmaṇera; Sanskrit śrāmaṇera). The ceremony is also the preliminary part of higher ordination, raising a novice to a monk (see upasaṃpadā). In some Theravāda countries such as Burma, the rite

  • Prawer, Ruth (German-born American author)

    Ruth Prawer Jhabvala, novelist and screenwriter, well known for her witty and insightful portrayals of contemporary Indian lives and, especially, for her 46 years as a pivotal member of Ismail Merchant and James Ivory’s filmmaking team. Jhabvala’s family was Jewish, and in 1939 they emigrated from

  • Prawiek i inne czasy (novel by Tokarczuk)

    Olga Tokarczuk: …Prawiek i inne czasy (1996; Primeval and Other Times), established Tokarczuk as an imaginative author and crucial Polish voice. The saga follows the inhabitants of a mythical Polish village through successive generations in the 20th century. In 1998 Tokarczuk published Dom dzienny, dom nocny (House of Day, House of Night),…

  • prawn (crustacean)

    Prawn, any of certain crustaceans of the shrimp suborder Natantia. See

  • Prawo i Sprawiedliwość (political party, Poland)

    Poland: Poland in the 21st century: …fell to the centre-right party Law and Justice (Prawo i Sprawiedliwość; PiS), with its founders, identical twins Lech and Jarosław Kaczyński, attaining the posts of president (2005) and prime minister (2006), respectively. In 2007 the PiS abandoned its coalition partners—the scandal-plagued Self-Defense Party and the League of Polish Families—and called…

  • Praxeas (early Christian priest)

    Monarchianism: ” It was taught by Praxeas, a priest from Asia Minor, in Rome about 206 and was opposed by Tertullian in the tract Adversus Praxean (c. 213), an important contribution to the doctrine of the Trinity.

  • Praxinoscope (optical device)

    motion-picture technology: History: …onto a screen using his Praxinoscope, in which revolving mirrors and an oil-lamp “magic lantern” were applied to a zoetrope-like drum, and by 1880 Muybridge was similarly projecting enlarged, illuminated views of his motion photographs using the Zoöpraxiscope, an adaptation of the zoetrope.

  • praxis (Greek law)

    Greek law: …of an enforcement proceeding (praxis). The claim (dikē) might be raised by the plaintiff in pursuance of a private right or as a “public” (dēmosia) dikē for the purpose of obtaining the defendant’s punishment. The filing of a public dikē (technically called a graphē) was open to every citizen.…

  • Praxis et Theorica Criminalis (work by Farinacci)

    Prospero Farinacci: …1618, Rome), Italian jurist whose Praxis et Theorica Criminalis (1616) was the strongest influence on penology in Roman-law countries until the reforms of the criminologist-economist Cesare Beccaria (1738–94). The Praxis is most noteworthy as the definitive work on the jurisprudence of torture.

  • Praxis Pietatis Melica (collection of hymns)

    chorale: …edited the first editions of Praxis Pietatis Melica, a collection of tunes first published in 1644.

  • Praxis pietatis melica (collection of hymns)

    chorale: …edited the first editions of Praxis Pietatis Melica, a collection of tunes first published in 1644.

  • Praxiteles (Greek sculptor)

    Praxiteles, greatest of the Attic sculptors of the 4th century bce and one of the most original of Greek artists. By transforming the detached and majestic style of his immediate predecessors into one of gentle grace and sensuous charm, he profoundly influenced the subsequent course of Greek

  • Pray, Malvina (American actress)

    William Jermyn Florence: In 1853 he married Malvina Pray, and thereafter the two generally appeared together on the stage—he usually as an Irishman and she as a Yankee.

  • Prayag (India)

    Prayagraj, city, southern Uttar Pradesh state, northern India. It is situated at the confluence of the Ganges (Ganga) and Yamuna (Jumna) rivers, about 65 miles (100 km) west-northwest of Varanasi (Benares). Prayagraj stands on the site of ancient Prayag, a holy city that was comparable in fame to

  • Prayagraj (India)

    Prayagraj, city, southern Uttar Pradesh state, northern India. It is situated at the confluence of the Ganges (Ganga) and Yamuna (Jumna) rivers, about 65 miles (100 km) west-northwest of Varanasi (Benares). Prayagraj stands on the site of ancient Prayag, a holy city that was comparable in fame to

  • prayer

    Prayer, an act of communication by humans with the sacred or holy—God, the gods, the transcendent realm, or supernatural powers. Found in all religions in all times, prayer may be a corporate or personal act utilizing various forms and techniques. Prayer has been described in its sublimity as “an

  • prayer beads (religion)

    Rosary, (from Latin rosarium, “rose garden”), religious exercise in which prayers are recited and counted on a string of beads or a knotted cord. By extension, the beads or cord may also be called a rosary. The practice is widespread, occurring in virtually every major religious tradition in the

  • Prayer Book (Anglican liturgical book)

    Book of Common Prayer, liturgical book used by churches of the Anglican Communion. First authorized for use in the Church of England in 1549, it was radically revised in 1552, with subsequent minor revisions in 1559, 1604, and 1662. The prayer book of 1662, with minor changes, has continued as the

  • prayer flag (culture and religion)

    Tibet: Customs: …tradition is the hoisting of prayer flags on rooftops, tents, hilltops, and almost anywhere a Tibetan can be found. These flags signify fortune and good luck. The use of prayer wheels (Tibetan mani chos ’khor), which are spun during prayers in lieu of orally reciting mantras, is also common among…

  • Prayer for Christian Unity, Week of

    church year: Protestant churches: …observed during the Octave or Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, January 18–25—a custom started by Paul James Wattson of the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement and developed by Abbé Paul Couturier. The week is jointly sponsored by the World Council of Churches and the Vatican Secretariat for Promoting Christian…

  • Prayer for Good Harvests, Hall of (building, Beijing, China)

    Chinese architecture: The Ming dynasty (1368–1644): Exceptional is the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests (Qiniandian) at the Temple of Heaven, a descendant of the ancient Mingtang state temple. It took its present circular form about 1530. Its three concentric circles of columns, which range up to 18 metres (59 feet) in height, symbolize…

  • Prayer for Owen Meany, A (novel by Irving)

    John Irving: …personalities beset by tragedy, and A Prayer for Owen Meany (1989; adapted as the film Simon Birch, 1998), about the effects of a diminutive boy with messianic qualities on the life of the narrator, Irving continued to refine his use of hyperbole and the surreal to illuminate the human condition.…

  • Prayer of Azariah, The (apocryphal literature)

    The Prayer of Azariah, apocryphal insertion into The Book of Daniel in the Greek (Septuagint) Bible and subsequently included in the Latin (Vulgate) Bible and the Roman Catholic biblical canon. The Prayer of Azariah and the accompanying Song of the Three Young Men form part of chapter three and

  • prayer plant (plant)

    Prayer plant, (Maranta leuconeura), flowering plant of the family Marantaceae, native to the New World tropics. It has spreading leaves that turn upward toward evening, seemingly in prayer for evening vespers. The plant can be grown as a ground cover in suitable climates and is a common houseplant

  • prayer plant family (plant family)

    Marantaceae, the prayer plant family of the ginger order (Zingiberales), composed of about 31 genera and 550 species of rhizomatous perennial herbs that are native to moist or swampy tropical forests, particularly in the Americas but also in Africa and Asia. Members of the Marantaceae vary from

  • prayer rope (Eastern Orthodox rosary)

    rosary: In Christianity: prayer rope predates the Catholic rosary and is mainly a monastic devotion. Rosaries of 33, 100, or 300 knots or beads are the common sizes, and they are used to count repetitions of the Prayer of the Heart (the Jesus Prayer). The Russian Orthodox vertitza…

  • prayer rug

    Prayer rug, one of the major types of rug produced in central and western Asia, used by Muslims primarily to cover the bare ground or floor while they pray. Prayer rugs are characterized by the prayer niche, or mihrab, an arch-shaped design at one end of the carpet. The mihrab, which probably

  • prayer shawl (Judaism)

    Ṭallit, prayer shawl worn by male Jews during the daily morning service (shaḥarit); it is also worn by the leader of the service during the afternoon service (minḥa). On Yom Kippur, males wear it for all five services and on Tisha be-Av only during the afternoon service. Rectangular in shape, the

  • prayer wheel

    Prayer wheel, in Tibetan Buddhism, a mechanical device the use of which is equivalent to the recitation of a mantra (sacred syllable or verse). The prayer wheel consists of a hollow metal cylinder, often beautifully embossed, mounted on a rod handle and containing a tightly wound scroll printed

  • Prayer, The (sculpture by Brancusi)

    Constantin Brancusi: Early life and works: …a young girl kneeling, entitled The Prayer, which represented the first stage of his evolution toward simplified forms. He participated for the first time in the Tinerimea Artistica exposition, an annual exhibition of new talent, in Bucharest, and rented a workshop in the Montparnasse area of Paris. Rodin’s influence appeared…

  • Praying Hands (drawing by Dürer)

    brush drawing: …famous drawing by Albrecht Dürer, Praying Hands (1508). Brush drawing was used by many 20th-century artists, notably Picasso, Henri Matisse, and Max Beckmann.

  • praying hands (plant)

    Prayer plant, (Maranta leuconeura), flowering plant of the family Marantaceae, native to the New World tropics. It has spreading leaves that turn upward toward evening, seemingly in prayer for evening vespers. The plant can be grown as a ground cover in suitable climates and is a common houseplant

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