Ramanandis a Hindiu sect which addressed its devotions particularly to Ramachandra, and the divine manifestations connected with Vishnu in that incarnation.
The originator of this sect was Raminand, who is calculated by Prof. H. H. Wilson to have flourished in the end of the 14th or beginning of the 15th century. he resided at Benares, where a math, or, monastery, of his followers is said to have formerly existed, but to have been destroyed by some of the Mussulman princes. The Ramanandis reverence all the incarnations of Vishnu, but they maintain the superiority of Rima in the present age or Kali-Yug, though they vary considerably as to the exclusive or collective worship of the male and female members of this incarnation. The ascetic and mendicant followers of Ranmanand are by far the most numerous sectaries in Gangetic India. In Bengal they are comparatively few; beyond this province, as far as to Allahabad, they are probably the most numerous, though they yield in influence and wealth to the Saiva branches. From this point they are so abundant as almost to engross the whole of the country along the Ganges and Jumna. In the district of Agra they constitute seven tenths of the ascetic population. 'The numerous votaries of the Ramanandis belong chiefly to the poorer classes, with the exception of the Rajputs and military Brahmins.Gardner, Faiths of the World, s.v.