Parallel versions of Purāṇic narratives have been analysed by using text-historical and text-critical methods as well as structural approaches. Less attention has been given to the narrative structures and the ways in which parallel versions are produced. In this regard a narratological approach provides a helpful addition to the other methods. The plot or fabula of the story “The appearance of the liṅga”, which is retold several times in the Purāṇas, can be analysed as consisting of a common, stable set of fabula-elements, which is discernible in each version. Furthermore, the fabula-elements are composed of different text types, namely, doctrinal, prescriptive and liturgical. Differences in the versions can be detected in changes that occur not in all, but usually in only one or two fabula-elements. These differences between the versions are produced by changing events in the narrative as well as including different text types in individual fabula-elements. The combination of different text types is not necessarily an indicator that the narrative is composed of diverse textual layers, at different historical periods or by different authors. Rather, it is a characteristic feature of producing different versions of a narrative for different purposes and in various historical contexts. Furthermore, the combination of text types lends the narrative authority with respect to their doctrinal, normative or ritual content.