History of Nepali Literature

Nepali Language has evolved from Sanskrit. Initially, Nepali language was termed as “Gorkhali” or  “Khas” language but the king Prithivi Narayan Shah united the country, it got its name Nepali.

The oldest evidence found written in Nepali Language is Ashok Chilla’s bronze plate, carved in 1321 B.S. The oldest book written in Nepali language found to date is ‘Khanda Khadya‘ (1642). The writer of the book however is not known.

Other ancient books without their author’s name are ‘Swasthani Bharatkatha’ written sometime in 1658 BS and ‘Baj Parikxya‘ written sometime in 1700. The oldest known writer of Nepali books is Prem Nidhi Pant. Two of his books ‘Jwarup Pati Chikitsha‘ written in 1773 BS and ‘Prayashit Predi’ were both translation from Sanskrit books.

Dr. Tara Nath Sharma, has divided the history of Nepali Literature into 5 different eras:

  1. Pre Bhanu Bhakta Era (from beginning to 1871 B.S.)
  2. Bhanu Bhakta Era (from 1872 B.S. to 1936 B.S.)
  3. Moti Ram Era  (from 1940B.S. to 1976 B.S.)
  4. Pre Revolution Era  (from 1977 B.S. to 2007 B.S.)
  5. Post Revolution Era  (from 2007 B.S. to present.)

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