Famous for championing the causes of female education and emancipation, Ramabai is also remembered for her scholarly contributions to the study of Sanskrit.
As the daughter of prominent scholar Anant Shastri, she received an excellent childhood education. By her early teenage years, she could read Sanskrit, as well as Hindustani, Marathi, Bengali, and Kanarese.
In the late 1870s, she was awarded Calcutta University's prestigious titles of Saraswati and Pandita.
She and her brother and fellow women's education proponent delivered lectures throughout India. In the early 1880s, she married attorney Bipin Behari Medhvi and gave birth to a daughter named Manorama Bai.