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Bharata is the original name of so called India in English by British Raj. However literal meaning of the word Bharata has nthing to do with English word "India". Bharata is Sanskrit word which meand "to be preserved". The name India may refer to either the region of Greater India (the Indian subcontinent) or to the contemporary Republic of India located therein. The name is derived from the name of the Indus, or Sindhu, river and has been in use in Greek since Herodotus (4th century BC). The term appeared in Old English as early the 9th century and reemerged in Modern English in the 17th century.
The Republic of India has two principal short names in both official and popular English usage, each of which is historically significant, India and Bharat. The first article of the Constitution of India states that "India, that is Bharat, shall be a union of states," implicitly codifying India and Bharat as equally official short names for the Republic of India. A third name, Hindustan, is a historical term for the north and northwestern subcontinent (especially during the British India period) that is now widely used as an alternative name for the region comprising most of the modern nations of the subcontinent when Indians speak among themselves. The usage of Bharat, Hindustan or India is dependant on the context and language of conversation.
The English term is from Greek Ἰνδία (Indía), via Latin India. Indía in Koine Greek denoted the region of the Indus ("Ἰνδός") river in Pakistan, since Herodotus (5th century BC) ἡ Ἰνδική χώρη, hē Indikē chōrē; "Indian land", Ἰνδός, Indos, "an Indian", from Old Persian (referring to what is now known as Sindh, a province of present day Pakistan, and listed as a conquered territory by Darius I in the Persepolis terrace inscription). The name is derived ultimately from Sindhu, the Sanskrit name of the river, but also meaning "river" generically. Latin India is used by Lucian (2nd century). India is referred to as Indu in Chinese and Indhu desam/Indhiya in Tamil.
The name India was known in Old English, and was used in King Alfred's translation of Orosius. In Middle English, the name was, under French influence, replaced by Ynde or Inde, which entered Early Modern English as Indie. The name India then came back to English usage from the 17th century onwards, and may be due to the influence of Latin, or Spanish or Portuguese.
Sanskrit indu "drop (of Soma)", also a term for the Moon, is unrelated, but has sometimes been erroneously connected, listed by, among others, Colonel James Todd in his Annals of Rajputana. Todd describes ancient India as under control of tribes claiming descent from the Moon, or "Indu" (referring to Chandravanshi Rajputs).
The name Bhārata (//) (भारत) has been used as a self-ascribed name by people of the Indian Subcontinent and the Republic of India. Bhārata is the official Sanskrit name of the country, Bhārata Gaṇarājya, and the name is derived from the ancient Indian texts, that which refers to the land that comprises India as Bhārata varṣam, and uses this term to distinguish it from other varṣas or continents. For example, the Vayu Puranas says he who conquers the whole of Bharata-varsa is celebrated as a samrāt (Vayu Purana 45, 86). However in some puranas, the term 'Bharate' refers to the whole Earth as Emperor Bharata is said to have ruled the whole Earth. Until the death of Maharaja Parikshit, the last formidable emperor of the Kuru dynasty, the known world was known as Bharata varsha..Bhartas was also a community as mentioned in Rigveda.
The Sanskrit word bhārata is a vrddhi derivation of bharata, which was originally an epithet of Agni. The term is a verbal noun of the Sanskrit root bhr-, "to bear / to carry", with a literal meaning of "to be maintained" (of fire). The root bhr is cognate with the English verb to bear and Latin ferō. This term also means "one who is engaged in search for knowledge".
According to the Puranas(Gita), this country is known as Bharatavarsha after the king Bharata Chakravarti. This has been mentioned in Vishnu Purana (2,1,31), Vayu Purana,(33,52), Linga Purana(1,47,23), Brahmanda Purana (14,5,62), Agni Purana ( 107,11–12), Skanda Purana, Khanda (37,57) and Markandaya Purana (50,41) it is clearly stated that this country is known as Bharata Varsha. Vishnu Purāna mentions:
The realm of Bharata is known as Bharātavarṣa in the Mahabhārata (the core portion of which is itself known as Bhārata) and later texts. The term varsa means a division of the earth, or a continent.  A version of the Bhagavata Purana says, the name Bharata is after Jata Bharata who appears in the fifth canto of the Bhagavata.
The term in Classical Sanskrit literature is taken to comprise the present day territories of Afghanistan, Pakistan, Republic of India, Nepal and Bangladesh. This corresponds to the approximate extent of the historical Maurya Empire under emperors Chandragupta Maurya and Ashoka the Great (4th to 3rd centuries BC). Later political entities unifying approximately the same region are the Mughal Empire (17th century), the Maratha Empire (18th century), and the British Raj (19th to 20th centuries).
Modern day North India was included as Hindustān هندوستان in Persian, الهند is the term in the Arabic language (e.g. in the 11th century. It also occurs intermittently in usage within India, such as in the phrase Jai Hind (Hindi: जय हिन्द).
Hindustān, as the term "India" itself, entered the English language in the 17th century. In the 19th century, the term as used in English referred to the northern region of the subcontinent between the Indus and Brahmaputra rivers and between the Himalayas and the Vindhyas in particular, hence the term Hindustani for the Hindi-Urdu language. Hindustan was in use synonymously with India during the British Raj.
Today, Hindustān is no longer in use as the official name for India, although in Modern Standard Arabic as well as dialects it is the only name for India, (al-Hind الهند).
Āryāvarta //; (Sanskrit: आर्यावर्त, "abode of the Aryans") is a name for North India in classical Sanskrit literature. The Manu Smriti (2.22) gives the name to "the tract between the Himalaya and the Vindhya ranges, from the Eastern (Bay of Bengal) to the Western Sea (Arabian Sea)".
Jambudvipa was used in ancient scriptures for the name of India before Bharata became the official name scriptures began using.
Tianzhu (天竺) Chinese Tang dynasty in reference to the Indian origins of Buddhism.
Tenjiku (天竺) is the Japanese word, which derives from Chinese word Tianzhu(天竺) commonly used in reference to pre-modern India. Tian, the root word for the Japanese kanji, means "heaven", while, jiku, means: "the centre of", or 'primary concentration of'. The foreign loanwords Indo (インド) and India (インディア) are also used in some cases.
The current Chinese word for India is Yindu (印度). Sindhu, the term yin was used in classical Chinese much like the English Ind. The monk Xuanzang referred to India as Wu Yin or "Five Inds". The current Japanese name for modern India is the foreign loanword Indo (インド).
Hodu (Hebrew: הדו ) is the Biblical Hebrew name for India mentioned in the Book of Esther part of the Jewish Tanakh (Bible), and Christian Old Testament. In Esther 1:1, Ahasuerus (Xerxes) had been described as King ruling 127 provinces from Hodu (India) to Ethiopia. 
Some historical definitions prior to 1500 are presented below
|c. 486 BC||Hidush||Naksh-i-Rustam||"Says Darius the King: By the grace of Ormazd these (are) the countries which I have acquired besides Persia. I have established my power over them. They have brought tribute to me. That which has been said to them by me they have done. They have obeyed my law. Medea... Arachotia (Harauvatish), Sattagydia (Thatagush), Gandaria (Gadára), India (Hidush)...."|
|c.400-300 BC||Hodu||Book of Esther (Bible)||"Now it took place in the days of Ahasuerus, the Ahasuerus who reigned from Hodu (India) to Cush (Ethiopia) over 127 provinces"|
|c. 440 BC||India||Herodotus||"Eastward of India lies a tract which is entirely sand. Indeed, of all the inhabitants of Asia, concerning whom anything is known, the Indians dwell nearest to the east, and the rising of the Sun."|
|c. 300 BC||India/Indikē||Megasthenes||"India then being four-sided in plan, the side which looks to the Orient and that to the South, the Great Sea compasseth; that towards the Arctic is divided by the mountain chain of Hēmōdus from Scythia, inhabited by that tribe of Scythians who are called Sakai; and on the fourth side, turned towards the West, the Indus marks the boundary, the biggest or nearly so of all rivers after the Nile."|
|c. 140.||Indoi, Indou||Arrian||"The boundary of the land of India towards the north is Mount Taurus. It is not still called Taurus in this land; but Taurus begins from the sea over against Pamphylia and Lycia and Cilicia; and reaches as far as the Eastern Ocean, running right across Asia. But the mountain has different names in different places; in one, Parapamisus, in another Hemodus; elsewhere it is called Imaon, and perhaps has all sorts of other names; but the Macedonians who fought with Alexander called it Caucasus; another Caucasus, that is, not the Scythian; so that the story ran that Alexander came even to the far side of the Caucasus. The western part of India is bounded by the river Indus right down to the ocean, where the river runs out by two mouths, not joined together as are the five mouths of the Ister; but like those of the Nile, by which the Egyptian delta is formed; thus also the Indian delta is formed by the river Indus, not less than the Egyptian; and this in the Indian tongue is called Pattala. Towards the south this ocean bounds the land of India, and eastward the sea itself is the boundary. The southern part near Pattala and the mouths of the Indus were surveyed by Alexander and Macedonians, and many Greeks; as for the eastern part, Alexander did not traverse this beyond the river Hyphasis. A few historians have described the parts which are this side of the Ganges and where are the mouths of the Ganges and the city of Palimbothra, the greatest Indian city on the Ganges. (...) The Indian rivers are greater than any others in Asia; greatest are the Ganges and the Indus, whence the land gets its name; each of these is greater than the Nile of Egypt and the Scythian Ister, even were these put together; my own idea is that even the Acesines is greater than the Ister and the Nile, where the Acesines having taken in the Hydaspes, Hydraotes, and Hyphasis, runs into the Indus, so that its breadth there becomes thirty stades. Possibly also other greater rivers run through the land of India."|
|320 CE or later||Bhāratam||Vishnu Purana||"उत्तरं यत्समुद्रस्य हिमाद्रेश्चैव दक्षिणम् । |
वर्षं तद् भारतं नाम भारती यत्र संततिः ।।"
|c. 590.||Hind||Istakhri||"As for the land of the Hind it is bounded on the East by the Persian Sea (i.e. the Indian Ocean), on the W. and S. by the countries of Islām, and on the N. by the Chinese Empire. . . . The length of the land of the Hind from the government of Mokrān, the country of Mansūra and Bodha and the rest of Sind, till thou comest to Kannūj and thence passest on to Tibet, is about 4 months, and its breadth from the Indian Ocean to the country of Kannūj about three months."|
|c. 650||Five Indies||Xuanzang||"The circumference of 五印 (Modern Chinese: Wǔ Yìn, the Five Indies) is about 90,000 li; on three sides it is bounded by a great sea; on the north it is backed by snowy mountains. It is wide at the north and narrow at the south; its figure is that of a half-moon."|
|c. 944.||Hind, Sind||Masudi||"For the nonce let us confine ourselves to summary notices concerning the kings of Sind and Hind. The language of Sind is different from that of Hind. . . ."|
|c. 1020||Hind||Al-Birūnī||"Hind is surrounded on the East by Chín and Máchín, on the West by Sind and Kábul, and on the South by the Sea."-|
|1205||Hind||Hasan Nizāmī||"The whole country of Hind, from Peshawar in the north, to the Indian Ocean in the south; from Sehwan (on the west bank of the Indus) to the mountains on the east dividing from China."|
|1298||India the Greater|
India the Minor
|Marco Polo||"India the Greater is that which extends from Maabar to Kesmacoran (i.e. from Coromandel to Mekran), and it contains 13 great kingdoms. . . . India the Lesser extends from the Province of Champa to Mutfili (i.e. from Cochin-China to the Kistna Delta), and contains 8 great Kingdoms. . . . Abash (Abyssinia) is a very great province, and you must know that it constitutes the Middle India."|
|c. 1328.||India||Friar Jordanus||"What shall I say? The great- ness of this India is beyond description. But let this much suffice concerning India the Greater and the Less. Of India Tertia I will say this, that I have not indeed seen its many marvels, not having been there. . . ."|
|1404||India Minor||Clavijo||"And this same Thursday that the said Ambassadors arrived at this great River (the Oxus) they crossed to the other side. And the same day . . . came in the evening to a great city which is called Tenmit (Termez), and this used to belong to India Minor, but now belongs to the empire of Samarkand, having been conquered by Tamurbec."|
1.1. Epigraphic Evidence: 2.The Hamadan, Persepolis and Naqsh-I-Rustam Inscriptions 4 of Persian monarch Darius mention a people 3.'Hidu' as included in his empire. These inscriptions are dated between 520-485 B.C.4.This fact establishes that the term 'Hi(n)du' was current more than 500 years before Christ. Xerexes, successor of Darius, in his inscriptios4 4.at Persepolis, gives names of countries under his rule. The list includes 'Hidu'. Xerexes was ruling between 485-465 B.C.4 On a tomb in Persepolis, another inscription assigned to Artaxerexes(404-395 B.C.)4, there 5.2 6.Are three figures above which are inscribed 'iyam Qataguviya' (this is Satygidian),'iyam Ga(n)dariya' (this is Gandhara) and 'iyam Hi(n)duviya'(this is Hi(n)du).The Asokan inscriptions (3rd century B.C.) 5, repeatedly use expressions like 7.'Hida'(हिंद) for 'India' and 'Hida loka' (हिन्द लोक)for 'Indian nation'.'Hida' 8.And its derivative forms are used more than 70 times in the Ashokan inscriptions. For instance in the Jaugadha, separate rock edict II, the lines 3 &4, read सर्व मुनिसा मे पजा। अथ पजाये इच्छामि किंति मे सवे णा हितसुखेन युजे यु। अथ पजाये इच्छमि किंति मे सवेन हित सुखेन युजेयु ति हिंद लोगिक पाललोकिकेण हेवंमेव मे इछ सवमुनिसेसु। (All men are my people. I desire for my people that they may be provided with all welfare and happiness. I desire for my people, including the people of Hind and beyond and I desire for all men.)The Edict further, says in lines 7 & 8, 9.मम निमितं च धंमं चलेयु ति हिंद लोगं च पाललोगं च आलाधयेयु। (Dhamma may be followed and and the people of Hind 10.and beyond may be served.)The Ashokan inscriptions establish the antiquity of the name 'Hind' for India to at least third century B.C.In Persepolis Pahlvi inscriptions of Shahpur II (310 A.D.) the king has the titles shakanshah hind 11.shakastan u tuxaristan dabiran dabir,"king of Shakastan, minister of ministers of Hind Shakastan and Tukharistan".6 12.The epigraphic evidence from the Achaemenid, Ashokan and Sasanian Pahlvi records, puts a question mark on the theory about the term 'Hindu' having originated in Arab usage in the 8th century A.D. Literary evidence takes the antiquity of the word 'Hindu' back to at least 1000 B.C. and possibly 5000 B.C. 13.3 14.2. Evidence from Pahlvi Avesta : 15.In the Avesta, Hapta-Hindu is used for Sanskrit Sapta-Sindhu 7, the Avesta being dated variously between 5000-1000 B.C. This indicates that the term 'Hindu' is as old as the word 'Sindhu'. Sindhu is a Vedic term used in the Rigveda. And therefore, 'Hindu' is as ancient as the Rigveda. In the Avestan Gatha 'Shatir', 163rd Verse speaks of the visit of Veda Vyas to the court of Gustashp and in the presence of Zorashtra, Veda Vyas introduces himself saying 'man marde am Hind jijad'8- I am man born in 'Hind'. Veda Vyas was an elder contemporary of Shri Krishna (3100 B.C.). 3. Greek Usage 16.The Greek term 'Indoi' is a softened form of 'Hindu ‘where the initial 'H' was dropped as the Greek alphabet has no aspirate9. This term 'Indoi' was used in Greek literature by Hekataeus (late 6th century B.C.) and Herodotus (early 5th century B.C.) 9, thus establishing that the Greeks were using this derivative of 'Hindu' as early as 6th century B.C. 17.4. The Hebrew Bible: 18.The Hebrew bible uses 'Hodu'10 for India, which is a Judaic form of 'Hindu'. The Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) is considered earlier than 300 B.C.10 Today's Hebrew spoken in Israel also uses Hodu for India. 5. The Chinese Testimony: 19.The Chinese used the term 'Hien-tu' for 'Hindu' about 100 B.C.11While describing movements of the Sai-Wang (100 B.C.), the Chinese annals state that the Sai-Wang went towards the South and passing Hien-tu reached Ki-Pin11 20.4 21.Later Chinese travelers Fa-Hien (5th century A.D.) and Huen-Tsang (7th centuryA.D.) use a slightly modified term 22.'Yintu'12 but the affinity to Hindu' is still retained. This term 'Yintu' continues to be used till today13. 23.6. Pre-Islamic Arabic Literature: 24.Sair-ul-Okul14 is an anthology of ancient Arabic poetry available in the Turkish library Makhtab-e-Sultania in Istambul. In this anthology is included a poem by Prophet Mohammed's uncle Omar-bin-e-Hassham. The poem is in praise of Mahadev (Shiva), and uses 'Hind' for India and 'Hindu' for Indians. Some verses are quoted below: 25.Wa Abaloha ajabu armeeman Mahadevo 26.Manojail ilamuddin minhum wa sayattaru 27.(If but once one worships Mahadev with devotion, one will attain the ultimate salvation.) 28.Wa sahabi Kay yam feema Kamil Hinda e Yauman, 29.Wa Yakulam na latabahan foeennak Tawajjaru. 30.(Oh Lord grant me but one day's sojourn in Hind, where one can attain spiritual bliss.) 31.Massayare akhalakan hasanan Kullahum, 32.Najumam aja at Summa gabul Hindu. 33.(But one pilgrimage there gets one all merit, and the company of great Hindu saints.)
34.The same anthology has another poem by Labi-bin-e Akhtab bin-e Turfa who is dated 2300 before Mohammed i.e. 1700 B.C. This poem also uses 'Hind' for India and 'Hindu' for Indian. The poem also mentions the four Vedas Sama,Yajur, Rig and Athar. This poem is quoted on columns in the Laxmi Narayan Mandir in New Delhi, popularly known as Birla Mandir (Temple)8. Some verses14 are as follows: 5 35.Aya muwarekal araj yushaiya noha minar Hindae, 36.wa aradakallha manyonaifail jikaratun. 37.(Oh the Divine land of Hind, blessed art thou, Thou art chosen land showered with divine knowledge.) 38.Wahalatjali Yatun ainana sahabi akhatun jikra, 39.Wahajayahi yonajjalur rasu minal Hindatun. 40.(That celestial knowledge shines with such brilliance, through the words of Hindu saints in four fold abundance.) 41.Yakuloonallaha ya ahlal araf alameen kullahum, 42.fattabe-u jikaratul Veda bukkun malam yonajjaylatun. 43.(God enjoins on all, follow with devotion, Path shown by Veda with divine percept.) 44.Wahowa alamus Sama wal Yajur minallahay Tanajeelan, 45.Fa e noma ya akhigo mutibayan Yobasshariyona jatun. 1.(Overflowing with knowledge is Sama and Yajur for Man, Brothers, follow the path which guides you to salvation.) 46.Wa isa nain huma Rig Athar nasahin ka Khuwatun, 47.Wa asanat Ala-udan wabowa masha e ratun, 48.(Also the two Rig and Athar (va) teach us fraternity, taking shelter under their lusture, dispels darkness.)
49. 50.7. 'Hindu' in Sanskrit Literature: 51.Another doubt created by the modern day anglicized historian is that the term'Hindu' is not found used in Sanskrit literature. This misconception can be dispelled by quoting from Sanskrit works15: Merutantra (मेरुतन्त्र )(4th to 6th century A.D.),a Shaiva text, comments on 'Hindu'.हीनं च दूष्यत्येव हिन्दु रित्युच्यते प्रिये। (Hindu is one who discards the mean and the ignoble.)
6 52.The same idea is expressed in Shabda Kalpadruma (शब्दकल्पद्रुम ), 53.हीनं दूषयति इति हिन्दू । 54.Brihaspati Agam (बृहस्पति आगमc) says, 55.हिमालयं समारभ्य यावदिन्दु सरोवरम्। 56.तं देवनिर्मितं देशं हिन्दुस्थानं ।। 57.(Starting from Himalaya up to Indu waters is this God-created country Hindustan)
58.Parijat Haran Natak (पारिजातहरण नाटक ) describes Hindu as, 59.हिनस्ति तपसा पापान दैहिकान् दुष्टमानसान्। 60.हेतिभिः शत्रुवर्ग च स हिन्दुरभिधीयते।। 61.(Hindu is one who with penance washes one's sins and evil thoughts and with arms destroys one's enemies.) 62.Madhava Digvijaya (माधव दिग्विजय ) states, 63.ओंकारमूलमन्त्राढ्य पुनर्जन्मदृढाशयः। 64.गोभक्तो भारतगुरु हिंन्दु हिंसनदूषकः ।। 65. (One who meditates on Omkar as the primal sound, believes in karma & reincarnation, has reverence for the cow, who is devoted to Bharat, and abhors evil, is deserving of being called Hindu.)
66.Vriddha Smriti (वृध्द स्मृति ) defines Hindu as, 67.हिंसया दूयते यश्च सदाचरणतत्पर। 68.वेदगोप्रतिमासेवी स हिन्दुमुखश्ब्दभाक्।। 69.(One who abhors the mean and the ignoble, and is of noble bearing, who reveres the Veda, the cow, and the deity, is a Hindu.)
7 70.Similarly other Sanskrit works which use the term 'Hindu' are, Kalika Puran,Bhavishya Puran, Adbhut Kosh, Medini Kosh, Ram Kosh etc 8,15. Even Kalidashas used a derivative form 'Haindava'16.
8. 'Hindu' and 'Sindhu' 71.Another theory says that 'Hindu' originated from the Persian practice of replacing 'S' with 'H'. This does not seem to be true is evident from the fact that Sindh has not become Hind and both Sindh and Hind exist in Persian as well as Arabic. The inscriptions of Darius and Xerexes which describe India as Hi (n) du, also use the term 'Sugd' for Sogdiana. This 'Sugd' should have become 'Hugd' as per this theory. The Pahlvi inscription of Shahpur II, uses 'S' in Shakastan and Tuxaristan.
But it cannot be denied that Hindu is a form of Sindhu. It needs to be realised that this change from S to H is common in Saurashtra where Sorath becomes Horath, Somnath becomes Homnath and so on. The form Hindu is therefore, likely to have come from Saurashtra.
72.It should also be noted that as per Nirukta rules of grammar, in the Vedic language, replacement of S with H is permitted17. 9. Conclusion: 73.Epigraphic evidence takes the antiquity of 'Hindu' back to at least 500 B.C. Use of ‘Hindu' as part of ' Hapta-Hindu' in the Avesta suggests that 'Hindu' is as old as' Sindhu' and therefore, belongs to the Vedic age. 74.Regarding the origin of 'Hindu' from 'Sindhu', the Saurashtran practice of pronouncing 'H' in place of 'S' provides the answer.
The official names as set down in article 1 of the Indian constitution are: