A celestial snake. Ananta literally means “without end,” “infinite.” It was a descriptive term used of Vishnu and other gods. It was also used as a name of Vishnu’s serpent.
Ananta was the giant serpent that floated upon the Milky Ocean and formed the bed for Vishnu as he slept during the involution of the universe (pralaya). Ananta (also known as S´esha) was the son of Kas´yâpa, the grandfather of all beings, by his wife Kadrû. Other serpents, such as Vâsuki, Takshâka, and Karkkotaka, were his brothers. Bala-Râma was a partial incarnation of Ananta.