|Fast Facts: Mahabharata|
At more than 100,000 verses (seven times the length of the Iliad and Odyssey combined), the Mahabharata may be the longest epic poem in the world. Authorship is traditionally attributed to the sage Vyasa; modern scholarship has established its development over several centuries ending in the first century AD. The central theme of the Mahabharata ("Great Tale of the Bharatas") is dharma, especially the dharma of kingship.
The Mahabharata is most well known for the Bhagavad Gita, the single most popular Hindu text. The Bhagavad Gita ("The Song of the Lord") tells the story of King Pandu and his five sons and features a memorable appearance by Krishna, the popular incarnation of Vishnu.