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:

इतरानपि सख्यादीन् सम्प्रीत्या गृहमागतान् ।
प्रकृत्यान्नं यथाशक्ति भोजयेत् सह भार्यया ॥ ११३ ॥

itarānapi sakhyādīn samprītyā gṛhamāgatān |
prakṛtyānnaṃ yathāśakti bhojayet saha bhāryayā || 113 ||

Others also, friends and the rest, that may come to his house out of affection, he should feed on food specially prepared, to the best of his ability, together with his wife.—(113)


Medhātithi’s commentary (manubhāṣya):

Friend’— Companion; they of whom the friend is the first. The term ‘and the rest’ connotes kind, and includes relations, associates, class-fellows, and so forth;—all except the Teacher.

That may come out of affection,’—The context pertaining to the guest, the term ‘affection,’ has been added with a view to preclude that character.

He should feed them.’

Specially prepared’—Having cooked the food with special care.

To the best of his ability;’—the term ‘ability’ is meant to be merely illustrative; the meaning is that the cooking and the seasoning should be in accordance with the man’s own ability, and also according to what each guest may deserve.

Together with his wife’—the time for the wife’s eating is the same as the husband’s; no time being laid down specifically for the wife; all that is said is that ‘the husband and Wife should eat the remnant’ (verse 116). In the Mahābhārata, however, it is shown that the wife eats after the husband: In the course of conversation between Draupadī and Satyabhāmā, Draupadī, describing the duties of the wife, has said—‘after all my husbands have eaten, I eat what is left’. The eating of food left by the husband is among the wife’s duties. Hence, what is here laid down is not that the Friend and others should eat at the time that, the wife eats; nor does the phrase ‘along with’ mean that, they are to eat out of the same dish. All that is, meant is that they should not be fed alone; the housewife also should eat there. This might go against the rule that ‘the husband and wife should eat what is left,’ What is meant is that if some respectable person is to be waited for, or if the husband feels disinclined to eat, then the husband may not eat with the Friend, etc., and in his place his wife should eat; this will bear testimony to his friendly feelings towards the diners.—(113)


Explanatory notes by Ganganath Jha

This verse is quoted without comment in Parāśaramādhava (Ācāra, p. 394);—and in Aparārka (p. 154) as laying down the treatment to be accorded to such relations and friends as happen to arrive after the Householder himself has eaten,—and as implying that the wife should eat after the husband has eaten.


Comparative notes by various authors

Viṣṇu (67.38).—[Reproduces Manu.]

Yājñavalkya (1.108).—‘He shall also feed such friends and relations as may arrive at the time.’

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