The most famous of the gitas is Bhagavad-Gita, dialogue between Krishna and Arjuna in the beginning of battle of Kurukshetra.

Where is it named as 'Bhagavad Gita'?

  • Where are you looking the word "Bhagavad Gita" from? Work of Acharyas or from some other text?
    – Pandya
    Commented May 13, 2019 at 3:21
  • @Pandya from scripture Commented May 13, 2019 at 3:54
  • i.e. from Puranas and Mahabharata? Btw, "Bhaja Govindam" stotra mention that word.
    – Pandya
    Commented May 13, 2019 at 3:58
  • @Pandya yes purana and mahabharata Commented May 13, 2019 at 3:59

1 Answer 1


The word is found only once in the entire Mahābhārata, in Chapter 2, the Parvasaṃgraha Parva, as the name of a parva in the 100-parva classification of the Mahābhārata.

01,002.055a   jambūkhaṇḍavinirmāṇaṃ parvoktaṃ tadanantaram
01,002.055c   bhūmiparva tato jñeyaṃ dvīpavistarakīrtanam

01,002.056a   parvoktaṃ bhagavadgītā parva bhīṣmavadhas tataḥ
01,002.056c   droṇābhiṣekaḥ parvoktaṃ saṃśaptakavadhas tataḥ

01,002.057a   abhimanyuvadhaḥ parva pratijñāparva cocyate
01,002.057c   jayadrathavadhaḥ parva ghaṭotkacavadhas tataḥ

The first is called Anukramanika (1); the second Parvasangraha (2); then come Poushya (3), Poulama (4), Astika (5) and the descent of the first generation (6); then come the parvas composed by the gods—Sambhava (7), Jatugriha Daha (8), Hidimba (9);


then comes the parva that describes the creation of Jambu (61) and Bhumi Parva (62), which gives an account of the expanse of the continents; then Bhagavad-gita Parva (63); then the parva describing the killing of Bhishma (64); then the anointment of Drona (65) and then the parva with the death of the sanshaptakas (66); then Abhimanyu Vadha (67) Parva; then Pratijna Parva (68); then Jayadratha Vadha Parva (69); then Ghatotkacha Vadha Parva (70);


then the terrible Moushala Parva (96), then Mahaprasthanika Parva (97), and then Svargarohanika Parva (98); then follows the Purana known as Harivamsha (99) that is an appendix; and finally comes the great Bhavishya Parva (100), which is also an appendix.

(The Mahabharata: Volume 1, Bibek Debroy)

And in Volume 5 of his translation, Debroy explains why the parva is named such:

Section Sixty-Three

Bhagavad Gita Parva

This parva has 994 shlokas and twenty-seven chapters.

This section is so named because it includes the Song Celestial or the Bhagavad Gita, the teachings of Krishna to Arjuna. The section begins with the dramatic news that Bhishma has been killed. When Sanjaya tells Dhritarashtra this, Dhritarashtra (and the reader) is astounded, wishing to know how this came to be. After a description of the arrangements for war, the rest of this section is the Bhagavad Gita.

A slight variant is also found in Śānti-parva:

12,336.008     vaiśaṃpāyana uvāca

12,336.008a   samupoḍheṣv anīkeṣu kurupāṇḍavayor mṛdhe
12,336.008c   arjune vimanaske ca gītā bhagavatā svayam

Vaishampayana replied, 'The armies of the Kurus and the Pandavas were arrayed in the battle. When Arjuna was distracted, the illustrious one himself sung about this, about the ends that are obtained and the ends that are not obtained.

I have told you about this earlier. This dharma is deep and is difficult for those who have not cleansed their souls to comprehend. This is in conformity with the Sama Veda and was thought of in the first yuga.


(The Mahabharata: Volume 9, Bibek Debroy)

  • 1
    Good find.. @sv. Commented May 15, 2019 at 1:10

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