E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
The advent to earth of a deity in a visible form. The ten avtaras of Vishnu, in Hindû mythology, are by, far the most celebrated. 1st advent, in the form of a fish; 2nd, in that of a tortoise; 3rd, of a hog; 4th, of a monster, half man and half lion, to destroy the giant Iranian; 5th, in the form of a dwarf (this Avtar is called Varumna); 6th, in human form, under the name of Râma; 7th, under the same figure and name, to slay the thousand-armed giant Cartasuciriargunan; 8th, as a child named Krishna, who performed numerous miracles (this is the most memorable of all the advents); 9th, under the form of Buddha. These are all past. The 10th advent will be in the form of a white horse (Kalki) with wings, to destroy the earth.