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The Vayu Purana (
The Vayu Purana, according to the tradition and verses in other Puranas, contains 24,000 verses (
The text is notable for the numerous references to it, in medieval era Indian literature, likely links to inscriptions such as those found on the Mathura pillar and dated to 380 CE, as well as being a source for carvings and reliefs such as those at the
The Vayu Purana is mentioned in chapter 3.191 of the Mahabharata, and section 1.7 of the
The various mentions of the Vayu Purana in other texts have led scholars to recognize it as one of the oldest. The early 20th-century scholar Dikshitar, known for his dating proposals that push many texts as very ancient and well into 1st millennium BCE, stated that the Vayu Purana started to take shape around 350 BCE. Later scholarship has proposed that the earliest version of the text is likely from the 300 to 500 CE period, and broadly agreed that it is among the oldest Puranas.
The text, like all Puranas, has likely gone through revisions, additions and interpolations over its history. Rajendra Hazra, as well as other scholars, for example, consider Gaya-mahatmya, which is an embedded travel guide to
As they exist today, the Puranas are stratified literature. Each titled work consists of material that has grown by numerous accretions in successive historical eras. Thus no Purana has a single date of composition. (...) It is as if they were libraries to which new volumes have been continuously added, not necessarily at the end of the shelf, but randomly.