Vishnu Bhikaji Kolte
Born(1908-06-22)22 June 1908
Died9 April 1998(1998-04-09) (aged 89)
Other namesBhausaheb Kolte
Known forResearch in Mahanubhav Literature

Vishnu Bhikaji Kolte (1908–1998), popularly called Bhausaheb Kolte was a Marathi writer and researcher of old Marathi literature. He hailed from Maharashtra, India. He served as Vice chancellor in Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University.


Kolte was born on 22 June 1908 in Narwel in Malkapur taulka of Buldana district of Bombay Presidency. His father was a farmer and a member of Satyashodhak Samaj.

Kolte received his school education in Malkapur and Khamgaon. He received his B.A. from Morris College in Nagpur, and M.A. from Nagpur University, securing three gold medals.

Kolte started his professional career as an assistant professor of Marathi at Vidarbha Mahavidyalaya in Amravati and then Morris College in Nagpur. He moved on to be the principal of Morris College. At Nagpur University, he became a member, and later chairman, of the Board of Studies in Marathi; a member, and later dean, of the faculty of Arts; and a member of the Academic Council and the Executive Council. He retired as the vice-chancellor of Nagpur University. He was also a member of the Board of Studies and the faculty of Arts of four other universities.

Kolte presided over Vidarbha Sathiya Sangh and Maharashtra Bhasha Sabha. He was a member of the general council of Sahitya Akademi, New Delhi during 1956-1961.

Scholarly work

Kolte did pioneering work in the field of Mahanubhava literature.[1]

He researched about 20 ancient copper plates and stone inscriptions in Marathi, Prakrit, and Kannada languages. He decoded literature of Mahanubhav pandits, which they had written in an obscure code language in the 13th, 14th, 15th, and 16th century. He wrote exhaustive introductions to his books about the researched literature.

For Kolte's scholarly book on Leela Charitra, the first known biography in Marathi,[2] the All India Mahanubhava Parishad conferred on him in 1956 the title Vidyaratna.

Kolte authored a book on simplification of Marathi orthography. He was President of Marathi Sahitya Sammelan, the conference on Marathi Literature held at Bhopal in 1967.


Kolte's writings include over 250 research articleski and over 20 books.[3] The following is a partial list of the books which he authored:


The following is a partial list of over 15 books which Kolte edited:


Kolte was honored with a Padma Shri title by the Government of India in 1991.[4]

A Sahitya Akademi Fellowship was conferred on him in 1994.


  1. ^ Dutt, K.C (1999). Who's Who of Indian Writers, 1999. Vol. one. Sahitya Akademi. p. 615. ISBN 81-260-0873-3.
  2. ^ Chopra, Pran Nath (1982). Religions and Communities of India. Vision Books. p. 53. ISBN 978-0-85692-081-3.
  3. ^ "Kolte -- an academician par excellence". The Indian Express. 10 April 1998.
  4. ^ "List of Padma Shri Awardees" (PDF). Government of India.