Itís the sixteenth Purana. During the period of Mahapralaya, Lord Vishnu had taken Matsya avatar (fish incarnation) to save the seeds of all lives and Manu. Matsya Purana contains a comprehensive description of Manu and Matsya avatar.
General contents of this Purana are Description of the greatness of Narsimh incarnation. Description of all the ten incarnations of Lord Vishnu. Greatness of fasting like Anant Tritiya and the places of pilgrimage like Prayag. Tales of Chandra vansh, Surya vansh and Kuru vansh and the kings like Yayati, Kartveerya etc. Description of the Kalpa and Yugas. Appearance of idols. Appearance and construction of Deva-mandapa (canopy for the deities). Tale of Savitri and Satyavan. Results of auspicious and inauspicious motion of the planets. Birth of Parvati. Immolation of Madan (Kamadeva) Wedding of Lord Shiva with Parvati. Birth of Kartikeya. Duties of a king. Description of the future kings.
This Purana is said to be narrated by Matsya avatar of Lord Vishnu to Manu, who was awaiting Lordís arrival during Mahapralaya in his boat anchored on a very high mountain.