The Sritattvanidhi (IAST|Śrītattvanidhi) ("The Illustrious Treasure of Realities") is an iconographic treatise written in the 19th century in Karnataka by order of [For information on how the work came to be commissioned ("He asked that a vast treatise be written...") see: Martin-Dubost, p. 120.] [For the work being done by the Maharaja's order rather than directly authored by him, see "an illuminated manuscript got prepared by a king of Mysore..." in: Rao, p. vi.] the then Maharaja of Mysore, Krishnaraja Wodeyar III (b. 1794 - d. 1868 [The date of his death is given as March 28, 1868 in the Annals of the Mysore Royal Family. See: Annals of the Mysore Royal Family , Part II, Government Branch Press, Mysore, 1922, page:176; mummaDi kRuShNarAja oDeyaru - oMdu cAriTrika adhyana ( Mummadi Krsihnaraja Wodeyar- a Historic Study) by Dr. R.Gopal & Dr. S.Narendra Prasad, published by Directorate of Archeology and Museums, Hospet- Karnataka-India in 2004 @page=104] or 1869 [Dates for Krishnaraja Wodeyar III are given as (1794-1869) in: Martin-Dubost p. 120.] [Dates for IAST|Krishṇa-rāja-Woḍeyar III are given as (1794-1869) in: Rao, p. vi.] ). The Maharaja was a great patron of art and learning and was himself a scholar and writer. There are around 50 works ascribed to him. [mummaDi kRuShNarAja oDeyaru - oMdu cAriTrika adhyana by Dr. R.Gopal & Dr. S.Narendra Prasad,@page=92-94] The first page of the Sritattvanidhi attributes authorship of the work to the Maharaja himself:

:"May the work Sri Tattvanidi, which is illustrated and contains secrets of mantras and which is authored by King Sri Krishna Raja Kamteerava, be written without any obstacle. Beginning of Shaktinidhi." [shrI kRuShNarAjamahArAjakaMThIravaviracitavAda, maMtrarahasyada shrItatvanidhiyeMba graMthavaM sacitravAgi bareyuvudakke nirviGnamastu.

:atha shaktinidhiprAraMbhaH]

Martin-Dubost's review of the history of this work says that the Maharaja funded an effort to put together in one work all available information concerning the iconography and iconometry of divine figures in South India. He asked that a vast treatise be written, which he then had illustrated by miniaturists from his palace. [Martin-Dubost, op. cit.] Thapan refers to the "Sritattvanidhi" as "compiled by IAST|Kṛṣṇarāja Wodeyar IV, kind of Mysore, towards the end of the nineteenth century." [Thapan (1997), p. 169.] The resulting illuminated manuscript, which he entitled the "Sritattvanidhi", brings together several forms of Shiva, Vishnu, Skanda, Ganesha, different goddesses, the nine planets (navagraha), and the eight protectors of the cardinal points (IAST|aṣṭadikpālas). The work is in nine parts, each called a "nidhi" ("treasure"). The nine sections are: [ Sri Mummadi Krsihnaraja Wodeyar's 'Sritattvanidhi', Volume-1;shakti nidhi @ pages xviii-xxiv: by Oriental research Institute, University of Mysore, 1997 ]

* Shakti nidhi
* Vishnu nidhi
* Shiva nidhi
* Brahma nidhi
* Graha nidhi
* Vaishnava nidhi
* Shaiva nidhi
* Agama nidhi
* Kautuka nidhi

Published editions

An original copy of this colossal work is available in the Oriental Research Institute, University of Mysore, Mysore. Another copy is in the possession of the present scion of the Royal Family of Mysore, Sri Srikanta Datta Narsimharaja Wadiyar. An unedited version of this work with only text in devanagari script was published about a century ago by Khemraj Krishna das of Sri Venkateshvar Steam Press, Bombay (Mumbai).

In recent times the Oriental Research Institute has published three volumes (Saktinidhi, Vishnunidhi, and Sivanidhi. [Chief editor, M. Madaiah. Imprint: Mysore : Oriental Research Institute, University of Mysore. Physical Description: v. <1-3 > : col. ill. ; 29 cm. Series Information: (Oriental Research Institute series ; nos. <186, 194, 199 >) Volume Titles: v. 1. Saktinidhi -- v. 2. Visnunidhi -- v. 3. Sivanidhi / chief editor, K.V. Ramesh. Source of citation: [ DK Agencies] , retrieved 1 March 2007.] Prof. S.K.Ramachandra Rao, has edited a book titled "Sri-Tattva-Nidhi (of Krishna Raja Wodeyar III of Mysore) (Vol-1). It was published by Kannada University, Hampi in 1993. However, in reality it was on Ragamala Paintings as depicted in " Svarachudamani" authored by the Mummadi Krishna Raja Wodeyar. Similar set of Ragamala Paintings are also found in Sri Tattva-Nidhi.

Another important work in this genre is by a Sanskrit scholar and hatha yoga student named Norman Sjoman. He has written a book titled: The Yoga Tradition of the Mysore Palace (Year of Publication : 1996,ISBN : 8170173892).The book presents the first English translation of a part of kautuka nidhi; Sritattvanidhi, which includes instructions for and illustrations of 122 postures—making it by far the most elaborate text on asanas in existence before the twentieth century. The book includes instructions for 122 yoga poses, illustrated by stylized drawings of an Indian man in a topknot and loincloth. Most of these poses—which include handstands, backbends, foot-behind-the-head poses, Lotus variations, and rope exercises—are familiar to modern practitioners (although most of the Sanskrit names are different from the ones they are known by today). But they are far more elaborate than anything depicted in other pre-twentieth-century texts.

Thirty-two forms of Ganapati

The "Shivanidhi" portion includes descriptions of thirty-two forms of Ganapati that are mentioned frequently in devotional literature related to Ganesha. [For color reproductions of the 32 Ganapati pictures from the Sri Tattvanidhi see: Rao, pp. vi-ix.] [For a description of the Ganapati forms based on personal inspection of one of the Mysore originals, see: Martin-Dubost, pp. 120-123, 376.] [Line drawings of the 32 meditation forms along with the Sanskrit descriptions appearing in the Śrītattvanidhi are given in: Glory of Ganesha (Central Chinmaya Mission Trust: Bombay, 1995), pp. 85-118. The same set of drawings but with some substitutions in order and naming appears in John A. Grimes, Ganapati: Song of the Self, SUNY Series in Religious Studies (State University of New York Press: Albany, 1995) ISBN 0-7914-2440-5.]

There are also sculptural representations of these thirty-two forms in the temples at Nañjanguḍ and Chāmarājanagar (both in Mysore district, Karṇāṭaka), done about the same time as the paintings were done and also at the direction of the same monarch. [Ramachandra Rao, p. vi.] Each of the thirty-two illustrations is accompanied by a short Sanskrit meditation verse ("IAST|dhyānaśloka"), written in Kannada script. The meditation verses list the attributes of each form. The text says that these meditation forms are from the Mudgala Purana.

In his review of how the iconographic forms of Ganapati shown in the Sritattvanidhi compare with those known from other sources, Martin-Dubost notes that the Sritattvanidhi is a recent text from South India, and while it includes many of Ganesha's forms that were known at that time in that area it does not describe earlier two-armed forms which existed from the 4th century, nor those with fourteen and twenty arms which appeared in Central India in the 9th and 10th century. [Martin-Dubost, p. 120.]

Ramachandra Rao says that:

"The first sixteen of the forms of Gaṇapati shown [in the Sritattvanidhi] are more popularly worshipped under the name "shoḍaśa-gaṇapati". Among them, the thirteenth, viz. Mahāgaṇapati, is especially widely worshipped. There is a tāntrik sect which is devoted to this form. Śakti-gaṇapati, Ucchishṭa-gaṇapati and Lakshmī-gaṇapati are also tāntrik forms, which receive worship which is cultic and esoteric. Heraṃba-gaṇapati is popular in Nepāl." [Ramachandra Rao, p. vi.]

ee also

*Hindu iconography
*Illuminated manuscript



*cite book |last=Chinmayananda |first=Swami |authorlink=Chinmayananda |coauthors= |title=Glory of Ganesha |year=1987 |publisher=Central Chinmaya Mission Trust |location=Bombay |isbn=
*cite book |series= |last= |first= |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=Annals of the Mysore Royal Family , Part II |year=1922 |publisher=Government Branch Press |location=Mysore |edition=
*cite book |series= |last=Gopal |first=R. |authorlink= |coauthors=Prasad, S. Narendra |title=mummaDi kRuShNarAja oDeyaru - oMdu cAriTrika adhyana ( Mummadi Krsihnaraja Wodeyar- a Historic Study) |year=2004 |publisher=Directorate of Archeology and Museums |location=Karnataka |edition=
*cite book |last=Heras |first=H. |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=The Problem of Ganapati |year=1972 |publisher=Indological Book House |location=Delhi |isbn=
*cite book |last=Krishan |first=Yuvraj |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=Gaņeśa: Unravelling An Enigma |year=1999 |publisher=Motilal Banarsidass Publishers |location=Delhi |isbn= 81-208-1413-4
*cite book |last=Martin-Dubost |first=Paul |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=Gaņeśa: The Enchanter of the Three Worlds |year=1997 |publisher=Project for Indian Cultural Studies |location=Mumbai |isbn= 81-900184-3-4
*cite book |last=Ramachandra Rao |first=S. K. |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=The Compendium on Gaņeśa |year=1992 |publisher=Sri Satguru Publications |location=Delhi |isbn=ISBN 81-7030-828-3 Contains color plate reproductions of the 32 Ganapati forms reproduced from the Sri Tattvanidhi.
*cite book |last=Thapan |first=Anita Raina |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=Understanding Gaņapati: Insights into the Dynamics of a Cult |year=1997 |publisher=Manohar Publishers |location=New Delhi |isbn=81-7304-195-4
*cite book |series= |last=Wodeyar |first=Mummadi Krsihnaraja |authorlink= |coauthors= |title=Sritattvanidhi |year=1997 |publisher=Oriental Research Institute, University of Mysore |location= |edition=

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