Manusmriti with the Commentary of Medhatithi

by Ganganatha Jha | 1920 | 1,381,940 words | ISBN-10: 8120811550

This is the English translation of the Manusmriti, which is a collection of Sanskrit verses dealing with ‘Dharma’, a collective name for human purpose, their duties and the law. Various topics will be dealt with, but this volume of the series includes 12 discourses (adhyaya). The commentary on this text by Medhatithi elaborately explains various t...

Sanskrit text, Unicode transliteration and English translation by Ganganath Jha:

वैश्वदेवे तु निर्वृत्ते यद्यन्योऽतिथिराव्रजेत् ।
तस्याप्यन्नं यथाशक्ति प्रदद्यान्न बलिं हरेत् ॥ १०८ ॥

vaiśvadeve tu nirvṛtte yadyanyo'tithirāvrajet |
tasyāpyannaṃ yathāśakti pradadyānna baliṃ haret || 108 ||

On the Vaiśvadeva having been finished, if another guest should happen to arrive,—for him also he should provide food to the best of his ability; but he shall not make any offering (out of that food).—(108)


Medhātithi’s commentary (manubhāṣya):

Food cooked for all is referred to here by the term ‘Vaiśvadeva;’ on this being ‘finished’—i.e., all persons having eaten, and the food having been exhausted,—if another guest should arrive, then for him also he shall provide cooked food; but out of this latter food, he shall not make the offering that is made out of food that is cooked in the household.

The oblation into the tire also—and not only the offering—is not to be made (out of this food); because oblations and offerings have been laid down as to be made out of the food cooked in the morning and evening, and not out of the intervening cookings; as is going to be asserted below (in verse 121). So that, if one happens to cook several times during the day, he should not repeat the Vaiśvadeva offering with each cooking.

To the best of his ability’—i.e., with elaborate seasonings or otherwise.—(108)


Explanatory notes by Ganganath Jha

This verse is quoted in Mitākṣarā (on l. 103, p. 76) in support of the view that the Vaiśvadeva offering is not meant to be sanctifìcatory of the food; it is performed only for the accomplishing of certain desirable ends for the Householder—e.g., what is mentioned under 2.28.

Madanapārijāta (p. 311) quotes it, and adds the following note:—The Vaiśvadeva offering having been made, and one guest having been duly entertained, if a second one happens to arrive, and there is no cooked food left for him, then food should be cooked for him; but out of this latter no Vaiśvadeva offering need be made. If this offering were meant to be sanctificatory of the food, then it would be necessary to make it each time the food might be prepared; and the prohibition of the second offering can be justified only if it is not sanctificatory of the food. Some people have held that this offering has the dual character (a) of being sanctificatory of the food, and (b) of fulfilling a desirable purpose for the man.

It is quoted in Vidhānapārijāta (II, p. 305), which also adds that the interdicting of the second Vaiśvadeva offering clearly indicates that it is not regarded as sanctificatory of the food;—in Saṃskāraratnamālā (p. 924), which explains ‘nivṛtte’ as ‘after taking his food’;—and in Smṛtisāroddhāra (p. 284), which adds the following explanation:—‘Where the Vaiśvadeva offering has been made and the Honouring of the guest also done, if another guest arrives and there is no cooked food left, then another food should be cooked and offered to him, but the Vaiśvadeva offering need not be made out of this second instalment of cooking.’


Comparative notes by various authors

Āpastamba-Dharmasūtra (2.6-16).—‘Having called the cook, he shall have either Vrīhi or Yava cooked for him.’

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