Matsya protecting Svayambhuva Manu and the seven sages at the time of Deluge

Startling Similarity between Hindu Flood Legend of Manu and the Biblical Account of Noah

(Read the article on one page)

In 1872, the amateur Assyriologist, George Smith, made a discovery that would shock the world. Whilst studying a particular tablet from the ancient Mesopotamian city of Nineveh, he comes across a story that many would have been familiar with. When Smith succeeded in deciphering the text, he realized that the tablet contained an ancient Mesopotamian myth that paralleled the story of Noah’s Ark from the Book of Genesis in the Old Testament.

Today, we are aware that flood myths are found not only in Near Eastern societies, but also in many other ancient civilizations throughout the world. Accounts of a great deluge are seen in ancient Sumerian tablets, the Deucalion in Greek mythology, the lore of the K’iche’ and Maya peoples in Mesoamerica, the Gun-Yu myth of China, the stories of the Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa tribe of North America, and the stories of the Muisca people, to name but a few. One of the oldest and most interesting accounts originates in Hindu mythology, and while there are discrepancies, it does bear fascinating similarity to the story of Noah and his ark.

‘The Deluge’ by Francis Danby, 1840.

‘The Deluge’ by Francis Danby, 1840. ( Wikimedia Commons )

The Hindu flood myth is found in several different sources. The earliest account is said to have been written in the Vedic Satapatha Brahmana , whilst later accounts can be found in the Puranas, including the Bhagavata Purana and the Matsya Purana , as well as in the Mahabharata. Regardless, all these accounts agree that the main character of the flood story is a man named Manu Vaivasvata. Like Noah, Manu is described as a virtuous individual. The Satapatha Brahmana , for instance, has this to say about Manu: “There lived in ancient time a holy man / Called Manu, who, by penances and prayers, / Had won the favour of the lord of heaven.”

Manu was said to have three sons before the flood – Charma, Sharma, and Yapeti, while Noah also had three sons – Ham, Shem, and Japheth.

Both Noah and Manu are described as virtuous men.  ‘Noah and his Ark’ by Charles Wilson Peale, 1819

Both Noah and Manu are described as virtuous men.  ‘Noah and his Ark’ by Charles Wilson Peale, 1819 ( Wikimedia Commons )

In the Book of Genesis, the cause of mankind’s destruction is given as such, “And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. / And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart. / And the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.”

Augsburger Wunderzeichenbuch, Folio 1 (Genesis 7, 11-14), 1552.

Augsburger Wunderzeichenbuch, Folio 1 (Genesis 7, 11-14), 1552. ( Wikimedia Commons )

In the story of Manu, however, the destruction of the world is treated as part of the natural order of things, rather than as a divine punishment. It is written in the Matsya Purana that “Manu then went to the foothills of Mount Malaya and started to perform tapasya (meditation). Thousands and thousands of years passed. Such were the powers of Manu‘s meditation that Brahma appeared before him. “I am pleased with your prayers,” said Brahma. “Ask for a boon [favor].” “I have only one boon to ask for,” replied Manu. “Sooner or later there will be a destruction (pralaya) and the world will no longer exist. Please grant me the boon that it will be I who will save the world and its begins at the time of the destruction.” Brahma readily granted this boon.”  

In the flood myth from the Old Testament, God who saves Noah by instructing him to build an Ark. In the Hindu version of the story, it is also through divine intervention, in the form of the god Vishnu, that mankind is preserved from total destruction. In this story, the god appears to Manu in the form of a little fish whilst he was performing his ablutions in a pond. Manu kept the fish, which grew so quickly that its body occupied the entire ocean in a matter of days. It was then that Vishnu revealed his identity to Manu, told him about the impending destruction, and the way to save humanity. There is also a large boat involved in this story too. Vishnu instructed Manu to build a boat and fill it with animals and seeds to repopulate the earth:


rbflooringinstall's picture

Stories of the flood from around the world. I wonder how it all really went down in ancient times.


Peace and Love,


The similarity of the various legends should come as no great surprise as the catastrophic floods that marked the end of the last Ice Age greatly impacted the lives of many- if not most- of the human population who happened to be alive at the time.
As to how it all went down... I'm pretty sure it was a damned unpleasant time for anyone caught in or near the path(s) of the flood waters caused by the rapidly melting glaciers.
Imagine having to watch the entire world as you know it being literally ripped apart within a matter of hours by forces that were most likely beyond the understanding of those who witnessed the event.

Of such things are legends made....

Obviously both traditions come from the same source this case, due to the proven links between the Sumerian and Hindu civilizations. The sons names Charma, Sharma, and Yapeti,are similar to Noah three sons – Ham, Shem, and Japheth as they come from the same source.

Sumerian myth is tied to the Arratta, Armenian kingdom. As their cuneiforms decipt of their ancestors coming Aratta (Ayrarat), we need to examine the migration of Armenian highlanders throughout the world throughout prehistoric times. Rig Veda depiction of geography is Armenia itself. Vishnu stems from Vishap, as in the water dragon, which gives rise to Vishnu being half fish. Thud Vish(ap) is Vishu. The key in understanding all this must be trough the Armenian etymology. I encourage you to get a copy of Langauge as a Fingerprint from Amazon. The bible is not only a plagiarism from older myths, it is also a construed piece, hiding it's source.

All ancent stories have to have an origion somewere. Undoubtedly the flood stories coud be found in the Library of Alexandria, as well as the Halls of Egyptian temples. The clay tablet libraes of Sumeria were quite extensive, and we have these fortunately due their preservation in he earth, often because of a library catching fire and baking the tablets, instead the destruction fires had on written accounts elsewhere.
Scribes were carefull to try and write the accounts down as accurate as possible, but many of the oldest would have been origionally passed on by spoken tales. These would evolve with the hero of the tale being of the respective culture. Not all the same but enough to show that they all came from the same origion. To have NO diviation would be to finger the story as a copy of a more recent script.
The Hebrew accounts should reflect both their original accounts from the area of Sumeria, the ark of Noah having come to ground on the slopes in the Turkish border area, and what Moses learned from Egyptian records.
Seriously, I doubt you will find a 4,000 year old account of the flood at the ark site itself , it is not stealing or confabracrating to copy a history down so as to pass it on to later generations before one's history book, or tablets, descentigrate.

(please pardon the typos, my computer seems to have a stutter for some reason and its dropping letters).

The bible is the standard and is the true version. It doesn't hide its source. It reveals it source through out its pages. Its source is God.

The Old Testament is a plagiary of the Torah, which its is full of myths and legends from the ancient world and so-called pagan religions - principally Zoroastrianism. The dawn of civilization followed the end of the last ice age, glaciers were still melting, sea levels were rising, so tales about great floods and lost 'continents' (probably islands) are unsurprising.

>The Old Testament is a plagiary of the Torah

The Torah is the OT.

>myths and legends from the ancient world and so-called pagan religions - principally Zoroastrianism.

Zoroatrianism didn't exist at that time--it came later.

There are no "Charma, Sharma, and Yapeti" in Hindu puranas.
The progeny of Manu are Ila and Ikshvaku who created the Lunar and Solar dynasty in Indian purana/epic.

Manu married Shraddha and had ten children including Ila and Ikshvaku, the progenitors of the Lunar Dynasty and Solar Dynasty respectively.

The Mahabharata states:
"And Manu was endowed with great wisdom and devoted to virtue. And he became the progenitor of a line. And in Manu's race have been born all human beings, who have, therefore, been called Manavas. And it is of Manu that all men including Brahmanas, Kshattriyas, and others have been descended, and are therefore all called Manavas. Subsequently, the Brahmanas became united with the Kshattriyas. And those sons of Manu that were Brahmanas devoted themselves to the study of the Vedas. And Manu begot ten other children named Vena, Dhrishnu, Narishyan, Nabhaga, Ikshvaku, Karusha, Saryati, the eighth, a daughter named Ila,[15] Prishadhru the ninth, and Nabhagarishta, the tenth. They all betook themselves to the practices of Kshattriyas. Besides these, Manu had fifty other sons on Earth. But we heard that they all perished, quarrelling with one another."

Deception and forgery by Francis_Wilford (The Charma, Sharma, Yapethi forgery comes from him)

Wilford later admitted his guilt; according to Indira Ghose, that the Hindu expert who had been providing him manuscripts and who had been assisting him in his studies of sacred texts had corroborated the veracity of his religious theories. Wilford said:[7]

In order to avoid the trouble of consulting books, he conceived the idea of framing legends from what he recollected from the Puranas, and from what he had picked up in conversation with me. As he was exceedingly well read in the Puranas, and other similar books was an easy task for him; and he studied to introduce as much truth as he could, to obviate the danger of immediate detection...His forgeries were of three kinds; in the first there was only a word or two altered; in the second were such legends as had undergone a more material alteration; and in the third all those which he had written from memory.(Wilford 1805:251)[8]

This deception of Wilford had become the theme of general campaign by European intellectuals to belittle Indian learning against some respect which it had before. This was followed by flurry of other claims of deceptions by Indian informants in the fields of Medicine, Astronomy, and Literature. Wilford wrote to H.H. Wilson that:

he was really disgusted with the blunders, anachronisms, contradictions, etc,. of the puranics [Pandits versed in the Puranas] and their followers

"Indeed the gross imposition practised on Captain Wilford and Sir William Jones in the supposed Sanscrit account of Noah and his three sons under the names of Satyavarnam Sherma Charma and Jyapeti forged in the Padma Puran and translated by Sir William Jones Asiat Research Vol iii p 67 262 octavo are abundantly sufficient to justify the charge of disingenuousness in the modern Pundits or interpreters "

Page 198
Chronology and geography William Hales - January 1, 1830
C.J.G. & F. Rivington - Publisher

free ebook

There is a painting in temple of edfu in egypt which depicts seven sages traveling in a boat. I believe these are the same seven sages, Saptarishi, who traveled with manu in his boat during the flood, as depicted in the picture above.

On the inner face of the enclosure wall of the ancient egyptian Temple of Edfu near Luxor, it’s written that the temple was built by the dictates of the Ancestors, also known as the Seven Sages, the Senior Ones, and the Followers of Horus, who lived on he Primeval Mound, which was consumed by a flood, the Seven Sages having ostensibly created the new world after the flood, the temples according to their design, for instance, of the Great Pyramid of Giza

The Edfu ‘building texts’ are sacred texts on the temple walls that speak of a time thousands of years before the first king of the First Dynasty sat on the throne of Egypt. It is a veritable library in the form of acres of hieroglyphs carved on the towering limestone walls of the temple itself. These texts speak of the original historical temple of Edfu being the gods’ ‘genuine Great Seat of the First Occasion’. The texts also refer to ancient books and writings handed down from the early primeval age, what the ancient Egyptians called the ‘Zep Tepi’, the time of Osiris and Horus. The texts speak of an epoch far back in the mists of time, in which a group of beings known as the Seven Sages (or sometimes the ‘builder gods’) were believed to have settled in Egypt and picked out various points along the Nile where temples were to be established.

The texts of ancient Sumer and Babylon also ascribe great power to the "Seven Sages," explaining that they were the ones who founded or laid out the plan of the sacred city of Uruk (tablet one, line 19 -- also discussed in pages 300-302 in Hamlet's Mill). There, we read:

Go close to the Eanna Temple, the residence of Ishtar,
such as no later king or man ever equaled!
Go up on the wall of Uruk and walk around,
examine its foundation, inspect its brickwork thoroughly.
Is not (even the core of) the brick structure made of kiln-fired brick,
and did not the Seven Sages themselves lay out its plans?
One league city, one league palm gardens, one league lowlands, the open area(?) of the Ishtar Temple,
three leagues and the open area(?) of Uruk it (the wall) encloses.

Graham Hancock and Robert Bauval note that:

In the whole corpus of ancient Egyptian writings, the Edfu Building Texts preserve the only references to the 'Seven Sages' that have survived to the present day. Egyptologists have therefore paid little attention to the identity of these beings beyond conceding that they appear to have played a part in 'a much wider and more general theory concerning the origin of sacred domains and their temples.' In our opinion, however, there is something notable about the context in which the Texts describe the Sages. This context is marked by a preponderance of 'Flood' imagery in which the 'primeval waters' (out of which the Great Primeval Mound emerged) are depicted as gradually receding. We are reminded of Noah's mountain-top on which the Ark settled after the Biblical Deluge, and of the 'Seven Sages' (Apkallu) of ancient Babylonian tradition who were said to have 'lived before the Flood' and to have built the walls of the sacred city of Uruk. Likewise is it an accident that in Indian tradition 'Seven Sages' (Rishis) are remembered to have survived the Flood, their purpose being to preserve and pass down to future generations the wisdom of the antediluvian world? 200-201.

Why does the story of Noah speak about these seven sages/builder gods ?

Why does the story of Noah speak NOT about these seven sages/builder gods ?

it doesn't

Flood legends are common among cultures which originated in river valleys, including the Tigris-Euphrates (Noah) and the Indus (Manu). Such valleys are prone to flooding, including truly catastrophic floods which apparently occur every few thousand years from entirely natural causes. One doesn't even need to invoke the sea-level rise at the end of the last Ice Age, which in any case would have had more effect on coastal populations than riverine ones. Flood legends tend NOT to be found among cultures which did NOT originate in river valleys; if a truly worldwide flood had occurred, one would expect such stories to be found there as well.

>Flood legends are common among cultures which originated in river valleys,

There's a 122 Flood stories from around the world. It is highly unlikely that they all came from river valleys.

There exists a vast ocean beneath the crust of the earth. The probability that an meteor impact could have triggered an enormous flood not only from above, but primarily from beneath is quite high. It would account for the huge amount of 'salt water' erosion on both the Giza pyramids and the Sphinx. The flooding of the oceans half way up the pyramid which later receded to a level about 80 feet and remained for a long time is evidenced all over the great pyramid and the Sphinx. A flood of that magnitude would certainly have made an impact on world cultures causing them to record such an event, (even if only symbolically) in their secular and and religious texts. And considering there are over 100 flood stories, it looks like the bible is just one in a long line of accounts. It just happens to get the most 'likes'. That doesn't preclude it's being copied from other sources though which is likely what happened because most of the Torah is fable with only a smattering of actual history.


Its not surprising, considering "Hinduism"/Vedic civilisation predates the majority of the civilisations by eons. As for the comment about Armenian (Aryarat), it is a modification of the word "Aryavrat". The Aryavrat civilisation was the Mahabharate era civilisation. After that period ended, it is assumed based on circumstantial evidence that many people migrated towards Sumeria, evidence being, striking similarities between the sumerian etymologies with vedic & pre vedic sanskrit.

While the stories are similar, I do not think the situation they are talking about or trying to convey is the same. I know this will sound confusing, but please bear with me. The specific narrative of the flood in this account is the same granted. BUT if you read the details and events both before and after this story of destruction, you will find that it doesn't fit into the world chronology. Where it does fit is with the stories of an earlier destruction and parallels time wise with the destruction of the dark/half dark world (before) and the formation of the new world and the dawning of the Golden Age. It is my feeling that this storyline was put on top of another story which has been lost in Hindu Cosmology.

A majority of humans still live within 400 miles of the coast Graham Hancok has interesting theories that storm survivors were part of an advanced group of humans that had to restart civilization after the ice age ended.

Troy Mobley

Comparing both legends I believe ADAM and others including the flora and fauna arrived on earth which was then sterile soon on tits formation hit by a planet size object which is stated as Noah's arc

Very informative as always. But why is it that most of the times you claim that everything originates from ancient India and Asia in general. Is this some kind of a new trend? You did the same with swastika which originates from Ancient Greece and it is a symbol from goddess Athena it is called "kinitonion", it indicates the movements of the electrons. The deluge of Noah is clearly copied from the deluge of Deucallion. Please share with us more articles which are based on information from ancient texts.

Register to become part of our active community, get updates, receive a monthly newsletter, and enjoy the benefits and rewards of our member point system OR just post your comment below as a Guest.

Ancient Technology

Our Mission

At Ancient Origins, we believe that one of the most important fields of knowledge we can pursue as human beings is our beginnings. And while some people may seem content with the story as it stands, our view is that there exists countless mysteries, scientific anomalies and surprising artifacts that have yet to be discovered and explained.

The goal of Ancient Origins is to highlight recent archaeological discoveries, peer-reviewed academic research and evidence, as well as offering alternative viewpoints and explanations of science, archaeology, mythology, religion and history around the globe.

We’re the only Pop Archaeology site combining scientific research with out-of-the-box perspectives.

By bringing together top experts and authors, this archaeology website explores lost civilizations, examines sacred writings, tours ancient places, investigates ancient discoveries and questions mysterious happenings. Our open community is dedicated to digging into the origins of our species on planet earth, and question wherever the discoveries might take us. We seek to retell the story of our beginnings. 

Ancient Image Galleries

View from the Castle Gate (Burgtor). (Public Domain)
Door surrounded by roots of Tetrameles nudiflora in the Khmer temple of Ta Phrom, Angkor temple complex, located today in Cambodia. (CC BY-SA 3.0)
Cable car in the Xihai (West Sea) Grand Canyon (CC BY-SA 4.0)
Next article