Kathasaritsagara (the Ocean of Story)

by Somadeva | 1924 | 1,023,469 words | ISBN-13: 9789350501351

This is the English translation of the Kathasaritsagara written by Somadeva around 1070. The principle story line revolves around prince Naravāhanadatta and his quest to become the emperor of the Vidhyādharas (‘celestial beings’). The work is one of the adoptations of the now lost Bṛhatkathā, a great Indian epic tale said to have been composed by ...

Chapter XIII

[M] (Main story line continued) AS time went on Vāsavadattā began to feel a great affection for the King of Vatsa, and to take part with him against her father. Then Yaugandharāyaṇa again came in to see the King of Vatsa, making himself invisible to all the others who were there.

And he gave him the following information in private in the presence of Vasantaka only:

“King, you were made captive by King Caṇḍamahāsena by means of an artifice. And he wishes to give you his daughter, and set you at liberty, treating you with all honour; so let us carry off his daughter and escape. For in this way we shall have revenged ourselves upon the haughty monarch, and we shall not be thought lightly of in the world for want of prowess. Now the king has given that daughter of his, Vāsavadattā, a female elephant called Bhadravatī. And no other elephant but Naḍāgiri is swift enough to catch her up, and he will not fight when he sees her. The driver of this elephant is a man called Āṣāḍhaka, and him I have won over to our side by giving him much wealth. So you must mount that elephant with Vāsavadattā, fully armed, and start from this place secretly by night. And you must have the superintendent of the royal elephants here made drunk with wine, in order that he may not perceive what is about to take place,[1] for he understands every sign that elephants give. I for my part will first repair to your ally Pulindaka in order that he may be prepared to guard the road by which you escape.”

When he had said this, Yaugandharāyaṇa departed.

So the King of Vatsa stored up all his instructions in his heart; and soon Vāsavadattā came to him. Then he made all kinds of confidential speeches to her, and at last told her what Yaugandharāyaṇa had said to him. She consented to the proposal, and made up her mind to start, and causing the elephant-driver Āṣāḍhaka to be summoned, she prepared his mind for the attempt, and, on the pretext of worshipping the gods, she gave the superintendent of the elephants, with all the elephant-drivers, a supply of spirits and made them drunk.

Then in the evening, which was disturbed with the echoing roar of clouds,[2] Āṣāḍhaka brought that female elephant ready harnessed, but she, while she was being harnessed, uttered a cry, which was heard by the superintendent of the elephants, who was skilled in elephant’s language; and he faltered out in a voice indistinct from excessive intoxication:

“The female elephant says she is going sixty-three yojanas to-day.”

But his mind in his drunken state was not capable of reasoning, and the elephant-drivers, who were also intoxicated, did not even hear what he said. Then the King of Vatsa broke his chains by means of the charms which Yaugandharāyaṇa had given him, and took that lute of his, and Vāsavadattā of her own accord brought him his weapons, and then he mounted the female elephant with Vasantaka. And then Vāsavadattā mounted the same elephant with her friend and confidante Kāñcanamālā; then the King of Vatsa went out from Ujjayinī with five persons in all, including himself and the elephant-driver, by a path which the infuriated elephant clove through the rampart.

And the king attacked and slew the two warriors who guarded that point, the Rājpūts Vīrabāhu and Tālabhaṭa. Then the monarch set out rapidly on his journey in high spirits, mounted on the female elephant, together with his beloved, Āṣāḍhaka holding the elephant-hook. In the meanwhile in Ujjayinī the city patrol beheld those guards of the rampart lying dead, and in consternation reported the news to the king at night. Caṇḍamahāsena inquired into the matter, and found out at last that the King of Vatsa had escaped, taking Vāsavadattā with him. Then the alarm spread through the city, and one of his sons named Pālaka mounted Naḍāgiri and pursued the King of Vatsa. The King of Vatsa for his part combated him with arrows as he advanced, and Naḍāgiri, seeing that female elephant, would not attack her. Then Pālaka, who was ready to listen to reason, was induced to desist from the pursuit by his brother Gopālaka, who had his father’s interests at heart.

Then the King of Vatsa boldly continued his journey, and as he journeyed the night gradually came to an end. So by the middle of the day the king had reached the Vindhya forest, and his elephant, having journeyed sixty-three yojanas, was thirsty. So the king and his wife dismounted, and the female elephant having drunk water, owing to its being bad, fell dead on the spot.

Then the King of Vatsa and Vāsavadattā, in their despair, heard this voice coming from the air:

“I, O king, am a female Vidyādhara named Māyāvatī, and for this long time I have been a female elephant in consequence of a curse; and to-day, O lord of Vatsa, I have done you a good turn, and I will do another to your son that is to be: and this queen of yours, Vāsavadattā, is not a mere mortal; she is a goddess for a certain cause incarnate on the earth.”

Then the king regained his spirits, and sent on Vasantaka to the plateau of the Vindhya hills to announce his arrival to his ally Pulindaka; and as he was himself journeying along slowly on foot with his beloved he was surrounded by brigands, who sprang out from an ambuscade. And the king, with only his bow to help him, slew one hundred and five of them before the eyes of Vāsavadattā. And immediately the king’s ally Pulindaka came up, together with Yaugandharāyaṇa, Vasantaka showing them the way. The King of the Bheels ordered the surviving brigands[3] to desist, and after prostrating himself before the King of Vatsa, conducted him with his beloved to his own village.

The king rested there that night with Vāsavadattā, whose foot had been cut with a blade of forest grass, and early in the morning the General Rumaṇvat reached him, who had before been summoned by Yaugandharāyaṇa, who sent a messenger to him. And the whole army came with him, filling the land as far as the eye could reach, so that the Vindhya forest appeared to be besieged. So that King of Vatsa entered into the encampment of his army, and remained in that wild region to wait for news from Ujjayinī.

And while he was there a merchant came from Ujjayinī, a friend of Yaugandharāyaṇa’s, and when he had arrived reported these tidings:

“The King Caṇḍamahāsena is pleased to have thee for a son-in-law, and he has sent his warder to thee. The warder is on the way, but he has stopped short of this place; however, I came secretly on in front of him, as fast as I could, to bring your Highness information.”

When he heard this the King of Vatsa rejoiced, and told it all to Vāsavadattā, and she was exceedingly delighted. Then Vāsavadattā, having abandoned her own relations, and being anxious for the ceremony of marriage, was at the same time bashful and impatient: then she said, in order to divert her thoughts, to Vasantaka, who was in attendance: “Tell me some story.” Then the sagacious Vasantaka told that fair-eyed one the following tale in order to increase her affection for her husband.


8. Story of Devasmitā

There is a city in the world famous under the name of Tāmraliptā, and in that city there was a very rich merchant named Dhanadatta. And he, being childless, assembled many Brāhmans and said to them with due respect:

“Take such steps as will procure me a son soon.”

Then those Brāhmans said to him:

“This is not at all difficult, for Brāhmans can accomplish all things in this world by means of ceremonies in accordance with the scriptures. To give you an instance, there was in old time a king who had no sons, and he had a hundred and five wives in his harem. And by means of a sacrifice to procure a son there was born to him a son named Jantu, who was like the rising of the new moon to the eyes of his wives. Once on a time an ant bit the boy on the thigh as he was crawling about on his knees, so that he was very un-happy and sobbed loudly. Thereupon the whole harem was full of confused lamentation, and the king himself shrieked out, ‘My son! my son!’ like a common man. The boy was soon comforted, the ant having been removed, and the king blamed the misfortune of his only having one son as the cause of all his grief. And he asked the Brāhmans in his affliction if there was any expedient by which he might obtain a large number of children.

They answered him:

‘O king, there is one expedient open to you: you must slay this son and offer up all his flesh in the fire.[4] By smelling the smell of that sacrifice all thy wives will obtain sons.’

When he heard that, the king had the whole ceremony performed as they directed; and he obtained as many sons as he had wives. So we can obtain a son for you also by a burnt-offering.”

When they had said this to Dhanadatta, the Brāhmans, after a sacrificial fee had been promised them, performed a sacrifice: then a son was born to that merchant. That son was called Guhasena, and he gradually grew up to man’s estate. Then his father Dhanadatta began to look out for a wife for him.

Then his father went with that son of his to another country, on the pretence of traffic, but really to get a daughter-in-law; there he asked an excellent merchant of the name of Dharmagupta to give him his daughter named Devasmitā for his son Guhasena. But Dharmagupta, who was tenderly attached to his daughter, did not approve of that connection, reflecting that the city of Tāmraliptā was very far off. But when Devasmitā beheld that Guhasena, her mind was immediately attracted by his virtues, and she was set on abandoning her relations, and so she made an assignation with him by means of a confidante, and went away from that country at night with her beloved and his father. When they reached Tāmraliptā they were married, and the minds of the young couple were firmly knit together by the bond of mutual love. Then Guhasena’s father died, and he himself was urged by his relations to go to the country of Kaṭāha [see notes on the identification of Kaṭāha] for the purpose of trafficking; but his wife Devasmitā was too jealous to approve of that expedition, fearing exceedingly that he would be attracted by some other lady. Then, as his wife did not approve of it, and his relations kept inciting him to it, Guhasena, whose mind was firmly set on doing his duty, was bewildered. Then he went and performed a vow in the temple of the god, observing a rigid fast, trusting that the god would show him some way out of his difficulty. And his wife Devasmitā also performed a vow with him.

Then Śiva was pleased to appear to that couple in a dream; and giving them two red lotuses, the god said to them:

“Take each of you one of these lotuses in your hand. And if either of you shall be unfaithful during your separation the lotus in the hand of the other shall fade, but not otherwise.”[5]

After hearing this the two woke up, and each beheld in the hand of the other a red lotus, and it seemed as if they had got one another’s hearts. Then Guhasena set out, lotus in hand, but Devasmitā remained in the house with her eyes fixed upon her flower. Guhasena for his part quickly reached the country of Kaṭāha, and began to buy and sell jewels there. And four young merchants in that country, seeing that that unfading lotus was ever in his hand, were greatly astonished. Accordingly they got him to their house by an artifice, and made him drink a great deal of wine, and then asked him the history of the lotus, and he being intoxicated told them the whole story. Then those four young merchants, knowing that Guhasena would take a long time to complete his sales and purchases of jewels and other wares, planned together, like rascals as they were, the seduction of his wife out of curiosity, and eager to accomplish it, set out quickly for Tāmraliptā without their departure being noticed.

There they cast about for some instrument, and at last had recourse to a female ascetic of the name of Yogakaraṇḍikā, who lived in a sanctuary of Buddha; and they said to her in an affectionate manner:

“Reverend madam, if our object is accomplished by your help we will give you much wealth.”

She answered them:

“No doubt you young men desire some woman in this city, so tell me all about it, I will procure you the object of your desire; but I have no wish for money. I have a pupil of distinguished ability named Siddhikarī; owing to her kindness I have obtained untold wealth.”

The young merchants asked:

“How have you obtained untold wealth by the assistance of a pupil?”

Being asked this question, the female ascetic said: “If you feel any curiosity about the matter, listen, my sons, I will tell you the whole story:


8a. The Cunning Siddhikarī

Long ago a certain merchant came here from the north; while he was dwelling here my pupil went and obtained, with a treacherous object, the position of a serving-maid in his house, having first altered her appearance; and after she had gained the confidence of that merchant she stole all his hoard of gold from his house and went off secretly in the morning twilight. And as she went out from the city, moving rapidly through fear, a certain Ḍomba,[6] with his drum in his hand, saw her, and pursued her at full speed with the intention of robbing her.

When she had reached the foot of a Nyagrodha tree she saw that he had come up with her, and so the cunning Siddhikarī said this to him in a plaintive manner:

“I have had a jealous quarrel with my husband, and I have left his house to die, therefore, my good man, make a noose for me to hang myself with.”

Then the Ḍomba thought:

“Let her hang herself. Why should I be guilty of her death, especially as she is a woman?”

and so he fastened a noose for her to the tree. Then Siddhikarī, feigning ignorance, said to the Ḍomba:

“How is the noose slipped round the neck? Show me, I entreat you.”

Then the Ḍomba placed the drum under his feet, and saying,

“This is the way we do the trick,” 

he fastened the noose round his own throat. Siddhikarī for her part smashed the drum to atoms with a kick, and that Ḍomba hung till he was dead.[7] At that moment the merchant arrived in search of her, and beheld from a distance Siddhikarī, who had stolen from him untold treasures, at the foot of the tree. She too saw him coming, and climbed up the tree without being noticed, and remained there on a bough, having her body concealed by the dense foliage.

When the merchant came up with his servants he saw the Ḍomba hanging by his neck, but Siddhikarī was nowhere to be seen. Immediately one of his servants said,

“I wonder whether she has got up this tree,”

and proceeded to ascend it himself. Then Siddhikarī said:

“I have always loved you, and now you have climbed up where I am, so all this wealth is at your disposal, handsome man; come and embrace me.”

So she embraced the merchant’s servant, and as she was kissing his mouth she bit off the fool’s tongue. He, overcome with pain, fell from that tree, spitting blood from his mouth, uttering some indistinct syllables, which sounded like “Lalalla.” When he saw that, the merchant was terrified, and supposing that his servant had been seized by a demon, he fled from that place, and went to his own house with his attendants. Then Siddhikarī, the female ascetic, equally frightened, descended from the top of the tree, and brought home with her all that wealth. Such a person is my pupil, distinguished for her great discernment, and it is in this way, my sons, that I have obtained wealth by her kindness.


8. Story of Devasmitā

When she had said this to the young merchants the female ascetic showed to them her pupil, who happened to come in at that moment, and said to them:

“Now, my sons, tell me the real state of affairs—what woman do you desire? I will quickly procure her for you.”

When they heard that they said:

“Procure us an interview with the wife of the merchant Guhasena named Devasmitā.”

When she heard that, the ascetic undertook to manage that business for them, and she gave those young merchants her own house to reside in. Then she gratified the servants at Guhasena’s house with gifts of sweetmeats and other things, and afterwards entered it with her pupil. Then, as she approached the private rooms of Devasmitā, a bitch, that was fastened there with a chain, would not let her come near, but opposed her entrance in the most determined way.

Then Devasmitā seeing her, of her own accord sent a maid, and had her brought in, thinking to herself:

“What can this person be come for?”

After she had entered, the wicked ascetic gave Devasmitā her blessing, and, treating the virtuous woman with affected respect, said to her:

“I have always had a desire to see you, but to-day I saw you in a dream, therefore I have come to visit you with impatient eagerness; and my mind is afflicted at beholding you separated from your husband, for beauty and youth are wasted when one is deprived of the society of one’s beloved.”

With this and many other speeches of the same kind she tried to gain the confidence of the virtuous woman in a short interview, and then taking leave of her she returned to her own house.

On the second day she took with her a piece of meat full of pepper dust, and went again to the house of Devasmitā, and there she gave that piece of meat to the bitch at the door, and the bitch gobbled it up, pepper and all. Then owing to the pepper dust the tears flowed in profusion from the animal’s eyes, and her nose began to run. And the cunning ascetic immediately went into the apartment of Devasmitā, who received her hospitably, and began to cry.

When Devasmitā asked her why she shed tears she said with affected reluctance:

“My friend, look at this bitch weeping outside here.[8] This creature recognised me to-day as having been its companion in a former birth, and began to weep; for that reason my tears gushed through pity.”

When she heard that, and saw that bitch outside apparently weeping, Devasmitā thought for a moment to herself:

“What can be the meaning of this wonderful sight?”

Then the ascetic said to her:

“My daughter, in a former birth I and that bitch were the two wives of a certain Brāhman. And our husband frequently went about to other countries on embassies by order of the king. Now while he was away from home I lived with other men at my pleasure, and so did not cheat the elements, of which I was composed, and my senses, of their lawful enjoyment. For considerate treatment of the elements and senses is held to be the highest duty. Therefore I have been born in this birth with a recollection of my former existence. But she in her former life, through ignorance, confined all her attention to the preservation of her character, therefore she has been degraded and born again as one of the canine race; however, she too remembers her former birth.”

The wise Devasmitā said to herself:

“This is a novel conception of duty; no doubt this woman has laid a treacherous snare for me”;

and so she said to her:

“Reverend lady, for this long time I have been ignorant of this duty, so procure me an interview with some charming man.”

Then the ascetic said:

“There are residing here some young merchants that have come from another country, so I will bring them to you.”

When she had said this the ascetic returned home delighted, and Devasmitā of her own accord said to her maids:

“No doubt those scoundrelly young merchants, whoever they may be, have seen that unfading lotus in the hand of my husband, and have on some occasion or other, when he was drinking wine, asked him out of curiosity to tell the whole story of it, and have now come here from that island to seduce me, and this wicked ascetic is employed by them. So bring quickly some wine mixed with Datura,[9] and when you have brought it, have a dog’s foot of iron made as quickly as possible.”

When Devasmitā had given these orders, the maids executed them faithfully, and one of the maids, by her orders, dressed herself up to resemble her mistress. The ascetic for her part chose out of the party of four merchants (each of whom in his eagerness said: “Let me go first”) one individual, and brought him with her. And concealing him in the dress of her pupil, she introduced him in the evening into the house of Devasmitā, and coming out, disappeared. Then that maid who was disguised as Devasmitā courteously persuaded the young merchant to drink some of that wine drugged with Datura. That liquor,[10] like his own immodesty, robbed him of his senses, and then the maids took away his clothes and other equipments and left him stark naked; then they branded him on the forehead with the mark of a dog’s foot,[11] and during the night took him and pushed him into a ditch full of filth. Then he recovered consciousness in the last watch of the night, and found himself plunged in a ditch, as it were the hell Avīchi assigned to him by his sins. Then he got up and washed himself and went to the house of the female ascetic, in a state of nature, feeling with his fingers the mark on his forehead. And when he got there he told his friends that he had been robbed on the way, in order that he might not be the only person made ridiculous.

And the next morning he sat with a cloth wrapped round his branded forehead, giving as an excuse that he had a headache from keeping awake so long and drinking too much. In the same way the next young merchant was maltreated when he got to the house of Devasmitā, and when he returned home naked he said:

“I put on my ornaments there, and as I was coming out I was plundered by robbers.”

In the morning he also, on the plea of a headache, put a wrapper on to cover his branded forehead.

In the same way all the four young merchants suffered in turns branding and other humiliating treatment, though they concealed the fact. And they went away from the place without revealing to the female Buddhist ascetic the ill treatment they had experienced, hoping that she would suffer in a similar way.

On the next day the ascetic went with her disciple to the house of Devasmitā, much delighted at having accomplished what she undertook to do. Then Devasmitā received her courteously, and made her drink wine drugged with Datura, offered as a sign of gratitude. When she and her disciple were intoxicated with it, that chaste wife cut off their ears and noses and flung them also into a filthy pool. And being distressed by the thought that perhaps these young merchants might go and slay her husband, she told the whole circumstance to her mother-in-law.

Then her mother-in-law said to her:

“My daughter, you have acted nobly, but possibly some misfortune may happen to my son in consequence of what you have done.”

Then Devasmitā said:

“I will deliver him even as Śaktimatī in old time delivered her husband by her wisdom.”

Her mother-in-law asked:

“How did Śaktimatī deliver her husband? Tell me, my daughter.”

Then Devasmitā related the following story:


8b. Śaktimatī and her Husband

In our country, within the city, there is the shrine of a powerful Yakṣa named Maṇibhadra, established by our ancestors. The people there come and make petitions at this shrine, offering various gifts, in order to obtain various blessings. Whenever a man is found at night with another man’s wife, he is placed with her within the inner chamber of the Yakṣa’s temple. And in the morning he is taken away from thence with the woman to the king’s court, and his behaviour being made known, he is punished. Such is the custom. Once on a time in that city a merchant, of the name of Samudradatta, was found by a city guard in the company of another man’s wife. So he took him and placed him with the woman in that temple of the Yakṣa, fastening the door firmly. And immediately the wise and devoted wife of that merchant, whose name was Śaktimatī, came to hear of the occurrence; then that resolute woman, disguising herself, went confidently at night to the temple of the Yakṣa, accompanied by her friends, taking with her offerings for the god. When she arrived there the priest whose business it was to eat the offerings, through desire for a fee, opened the door to let her enter, informing the magistrate of what he had done. And she, when she got inside, saw her husband looking sheepish, with a woman, and she made the woman put on her own dress, and told her to go out. So that woman went out in her dress by night, and got off, but Śaktimatī remained in the temple with her husband. And when the king’s officers came in the morning to examine the merchant, he was seen by all to be in the company of his own wife.[12] When he heard that, the king dismissed the merchant from the temple of the Yakṣa, as it were from the mouth of death, and punished the chief magistrate. So Śaktimatī in old time delivered her husband by her wisdom, and in the same way I will go and save my husband by my discretion.


8. Story of Devasmitā

So the wise Devasmitā said in secret to her mother-in-law, and, in company with her maids, she put on the dress of a merchant. Then she embarked on a ship, on the pretence of a mercantile expedition, and came to the country of Kaṭāha where her husband was. And when she arrived there she saw that husband of hers, Guhasena, in the midst of a circle of merchants, like consolation in external bodily form.

He seeing her afar off in the dress of a man,[13] as it were, drank her in with his eyes, and thought to himself:

“Who may this merchant be that looks so like my beloved wife?”

So Devasmitā went and represented to the king that she had a petition to make, and asked him to assemble all his subjects. Then the king, full of curiosity, assembled all the citizens, and said to that lady disguised as a merchant: “What is your petition?”

Then Devasmitā said:

“There are residing here in your midst four slaves of mine who have escaped, let the king make them over to me.”

Then the king said to her:

“All the citizens are present here, so look at every one in order to recognise him, and take those slaves of yours.”

Then she seized upon the four young merchants, whom she had before treated in such a humiliating way in her house, and who had wrappers bound round their heads. Then the merchants, who were there, flew in a passion, and said to her:

“These are the sons of distinguished merchants, how then can they be your slaves?”

Then she answered them:

“If you do not believe what I say, examine their foreheads, which I marked with a dog’s foot.”

They consented, and removing the head-wrappers of these four, they all beheld the dog’s foot on their foreheads. Then all the merchants were abashed, and the king, being astonished, himself asked Devasmitā what all this meant.

She told the whole story, and all the people burst out laughing, and the king said to the lady:

“They are your slaves by the best of titles.”

Then the other merchants paid a large sum of money to that chaste wife to redeem those four from slavery, and a fine to the king’s treasury. Devasmitā received that money, and recovered her husband, and being honoured by all good men, returned to her own city Tāmraliptā, and she was never afterwards separated from her beloved.


[M] (Main story line continued) “Thus, O queen, women of good family ever worship their husbands with chaste and resolute behaviour,[14] and never think of any other man, for to virtuous wives the husband is the highest deity.” When Vāsavadattā on the journey heard this noble story from the mouth of Vasantaka she got over the feeling of shame at having recently left her father’s house, and her mind, which was previously attached by strong affection to her husband, became so fixed upon him as to be entirely devoted to his service.

[Additional note 1: the “chastity index” motif]

[Additional note 2: the story of Devasmitā]

Footnotes and references:


Cf the way in which Rüdigar carries off the daughter of King Osantrix, Hagen’s Helden-Sagen, vol. i, p. 227.


τηρήσαντες νύκτες χειμέριον ὕδατι καὶ ἀνέμῳ καὶ ἅμἀσέληνον ἐξῄεσαν, Thucyd., iii, 22.


The word dasyu here means “savage,” “barbarian.” These wild mountain tribes, called indiscriminately Śavaras, Pulindas, Bhillas, etc., seem to have been addicted to cattle-lifting and brigandage. So the word dasyu comes to mean “robber.” Even the virtuous Śavara prince described in the story of Jīmūtavāhana plunders a caravan.


I have already (p. 98) given cases of child murder with the hopes of obtaining offspring. I would also draw attention to an article in the Indian Antiquary for May 1923, “Ritual Murder as a Means of Producing Children.” It consists of cases which came under the personal notice of Sir Richard Temple when he was Superintendent of the Penal Settlement at Port Blair, Andaman Islands, between 1893-1896.— n.m.p.


See the first note at the end of this chapter.— n.m.p.


A man of low caste, now called Ḍom. They officiate as executioners.


Cf. the way in which the widow’s son, the shifty lad, treats Black Rogue in Campbell’s Tales of the Western Highlands. (Tale xvii d., Orient und Occident, vol. ii, p. 303.)- Cf. Parker’s Village Folk-Tales of Ceylon, vol. iii, p. 346 et seq., and Benfey, Pañcatantra, i, p. 609. —n.m.p.


See the second note at the end of this chapter.— n.m.p.


Datura is still employed, I believe, to stupefy people whom it is thought desirable to rob.


I read iva for the eva of Dr Brockhaus’ text.


Cf. the incident in the Persian story of the “Gul-i-Bakāwalī,” or the “Rose of Bakāwalī” (Clouston, A Group of Eastern Romances and Stories, 1889, pp. 269 and 287), where the courtesan Dilbar brands the four wicked brothers of Tāj ul-Mulūk in the same way as in our text. — n . m . p .


A precisely similar story occurs in the Bahār-i-Dānish. The turn of the chief incident, although not the same, is similar to that of nov. vii, part iv, of Bandello’s Novelle, or the Accorto Avvedimento di una Fantesca à liberare la padrona e Vinnamoralo di quella de la morte. (Wilson’s Essays, vol. i, p. 224.) Cf. also the Mongolian version of the story in Sagas from the Far East, p. 320. The story of Śaktimatī is the nineteenth in the Śuka Saptati. I have been presented by Professor Nilmani Mukhopadhyaya with a copy of a MS. of this work made by Babu Umeśa Candra Gupta.—See also the “Tale of the Goldsmith” in Hatims Tales, Stein and Grierson, 1923, p. 27, with Crooke’s notes on p. xxxiv. A good variant occurs in the Nights (Burton, Supp., vol. v, p. 335 et seq.). — n . m . p .


Cf. the “Story of the Chest” in Campbell’s Stories from the Western Highlands. It is the first story in the second volume and contains one or two incidents which remind us of this story.


I read mahākulodgatāḥ.

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