True Indian literature consists of writings from early Indian times to 1947. India has twenty-two officially recognized languages. Therefore, Indian literature is difficult to translate and study. Early Indian literature is composed of two main categorical time periods. These two are Vedic and Classical. Vedic and Classical writings are subtopics under Sanskrit literature. Sanskrit is writing made in the Indo-Aryan language.

Vedic was chronologically the first in Indian writings and is a collection of hymns, chants, and prayers. Vedic means "sacred knowledge." These Sanskrit writings are the oldest sacred Hindu texts and contain four canonical Samhitas, or topics, the first three being Rigveda, Yajurveda, and Samaveda. Dealing with the performance of sacrifices, these three canonical Samhitas were very important to the early Hindu religion. Finally, Atharvaveda concluded the group. These writings were a collection of spells and incantations, stories, predictions, apotropaic charms, and special hymns. Some of these are known as mantras and are recited as prayers. Vedas (Vedic writings) now differ with current Hindu beliefs and do not hold authorities among Indian religious leaders. Next in thistour of Indo-Aryan writings is the Classical period.

The Classical period contained lighter material, which was constituted of plays and poems purposed to entertain. Advanced in the written arts, an Indian man by the name of Kalidasa became known as the foremost playwright and poet of the era. In fact, Kalidasa's writings are to Indian literature what Shakespeare's writings are to English literature. But why was there such a great change in writing style? Because of India's growing population, the views of the public became diverse. Now that the old Hindu texts were not relevant to all the people, writers searched for a more basic approach, entertainment. The Classical period showed India's step from traditional, religious topics to writing for enjoyment's sake.

Indian literature gives a glimpse of early Indian religion and culture. With over twenty-two different languages, diverse writings were produced. This resulted in a change in religious focus because their beliefs were no longer universal in Indian society. From this change in focus, the move from Vedic to Classical literature came about.