Modern historians including Havell, Cunningham and Ferguson have conducted extensive studies regarding the origins of Vastu Shastra. On the basis of their studies, it is known that the science originated sometime around 6000BC. The subject was purely technical and hence its usage was restricted to architects only. The knowledge was passed down the line using oral teaching methods or through monographs that were hand written.
Ancient literature points to the fact that Vastu Shastra was regarded as a science that was used for constructing temples and palaces of kings. Initial literary references can be traced back to the Amarakosa, a dictionary in Sanskrit that Amara Simha had written. It has also found strong mention in most Puranas, including the Garuda and Vishnu Purana to name a few. Other than these, various epics, including Brihatsamhita, Aparajita Prutchcha and many more has helped shaped the science of Vastu Shastra.