This is a condensed version of a long epic, written between 750 and 500 B.C., consisting of 50,000 lines of Sanskrit verse. Divided into seven Kandas or books, it tells the story of Rama from his birth to his death. At regular intervals throughout the text, the chapters being condensed are designated by Kanda titles and numbers. Each interval is appropriate in length for a daily reading, and there are 365 intervals.
The cast of characters is provided by a glossary of proper names.