POTHĪ, popular Punjabi form of the Sanskrit pustaka (book), derived from the root pust (to bind) via the Pālī potthaka and Prakrit puttha. Besides Punjabi, the word pothī meaning a book is current in Maithilī, Bhojpurī and Marāṭhī languages as well-Among the Sikhs, however, pothī signifies a sacred book, especially one containing gurbāṇī or scriptural texts and of a moderate size, generally larger than a guṭkā but smaller than the Ādi Granth, although the word is used even for the latter in the index of the original recension prepared by Gurū Arjan and preserved at Kartārpur, near Jalandhar. In Purātan Janam Sākhī, the earliest known life story of Gurū Nānak, the book of hymns which he gave to his successor, Gurū Aṅgad, is called pothī. Gurū Arjan, Nānak V, probally alluding to the Ādi Granth pronounces pothī to be "the abode of God" for it contains "complete knowledge of God" (GG,1226). At several places in the Gurū Granth Sāhib, Pothī refers to sacred books of the Hindus as distinguished from those of the Muslims for which the words used are kateb and Qur'ān.
Balbīr Siṅgh Nandā