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:

दक्षिणेन मृतं शूद्रं पुरद्वारेण निर्हरेत् ।
पश्चिमौत्तरपूर्वैस्तु यथायोगं द्विजन्मनः ॥ ९१ ॥

dakṣiṇena mṛtaṃ śūdraṃ puradvāreṇa nirharet |
paścimauttarapūrvaistu yathāyogaṃ dvijanmanaḥ || 91 ||

One should carry the dead śūdra by the southern gate of the city; but the twice-born persons by the western, northern and eastern gates respectively—(91).


Medhātithi’s commentary (manubhāṣya):

The term ‘City’ stands for the village &c. also.

This rule applies to those places where there are several gates; the advice pertaining to such persons as may be capable of following it.

The Śūdra has been mentioned first, because it is an inauspicious subject. And this reversal of the order indicates that the term ‘respectively’ indicates that the Vaiśya should be carried by the western, the Kṣatriya by the northern and the Brāhmaṇa by the Eastern gate.—(91)


Explanatory notes by Ganganath Jha

(Verse 92 of others.)

This verse is quoted in Aparārka (p. 870), which adds that the word ‘Nirharaṇīyāḥ’ is to be supplied after ‘dvijātayaḥ’;—and that ‘Yathāyogam’ (for which it reads ‘Yathāvarṇam’) means that the castes are to be taken in the reverse order; i.e., Brāhmaṇa through the eastern the Kṣatriya through the northern and the Vaiśya through the western gate,—this on the strength of a text quoted from the Adityapurāṇa.

It is quoted in Parāśaramādhava (Ācāra, p. 634);—in Nirṇayasindhu (p. 414);—in Śuddhikaumudī (p. 111);—in Smṛtisāroddhāra (p. 216),—and in Hāralatā (p. 119), which notes that the castes are mentioned in the reverse order because the subject spoken of is an extremely inauspicious one, and by adopting this order the writer avoids the use of the epithet ‘dead’ directly in

connection with the higher castes;—it explains ‘Yathāyogam’ as ‘in the inverse order, i.e., the Vaiśya, the Kṣatriya and the Brāhmaṇa respectively’.


Comparative notes by various authors

Hārīta (Parāśaramādhava, p. 634)—‘The dead body should not he carried towards the village.’

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