|“||Devi is the female term for the Deva, meaning "goddess". Now, if any of you actually come and ask me what goddess means, I'll slap you silly with my slipper until you develop PTSD. I mean it!||„|
|— Matt Wright|
Devī is the Sanskrit word for 'goddess'; the masculine form is deva. Devi and deva mean 'heavenly, divine, anything of excellence', and are also gender-specific terms for a deity in Hinduism.
The concept and reverence for goddesses appears in the Vedas, which were composed around the 3rd millennium BCE. However, they do not play a central role in that era. Goddesses such as Lakshmi, Parvati, Durga, Saraswati and Kali have continued to be revered in the modern era. The medieval era Puranas witness a major expansion in mythology and literature associated with Devi, with texts such as the Devi Mahatmya, wherein she manifests as the ultimate truth and supreme power. She has inspired the Shaktism tradition of Hinduism. Further, Devi is viewed as central in the Hindu traditions of Shaktism and Shaivism.