deva

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deva

(Sanskrit: “divine”) In the Vedic religion of India, one of many divine powers, roughly divided into sky, air, and earth divinities. During the Vedic period, the gods were divided into two classes, the devas and the asuras. In India the devas gradually came to be more powerful, and the asuras came to be thought of as demons. In the monotheistic systems that emerged by the late Vedic period, the devas were subordinate to one supreme being.

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
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