Manusmriti with the Commentary of Medhatithi

by Ganganatha Jha | 1920 | 1,381,940 words | ISBN-10: 8120811550 | ISBN-13: 9788120811553

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:

ब्राह्मणक्षत्रियाभ्यां तु दण्डः कार्यो विजानता ।
ब्राह्मणे साहसः पूर्वः क्षत्रिये त्वेव मध्यमः ॥ २७६ ॥

brāhmaṇakṣatriyābhyāṃ tu daṇḍaḥ kāryo vijānatā |
brāhmaṇe sāhasaḥ pūrvaḥ kṣatriye tveva madhyamaḥ || 276 ||

The discerning king shall inflict this punishment upon the Brāhmaṇa and the Kṣatriya: the brāhmaṇa shall be fined the lowest amercement and the kṣatriya the middlemost—(276)


Medhātithi’s commentary (manubhāṣya):

The construction of this passage is elliptical:—‘In the case of mutual abuse between the Brāhmaṇa and the Kṣatriya, this shall be the punishment.’

Or, the Dative (in ‘brāhmāṇakṣatriyābhyāṃ’) may be taken as denoting purpose; the sense being—‘for the purpose of keeping in check the Brāhmaṇa and the Kṣatriya.’

The punishment here prescribed is to be inflicted when some grievous offence is attributed, and causes pain—(276)


Explanatory notes by Ganganath Jha

This verse is quoted in Vivādaratnākara (p. 255), which adds the following explanations:—In a case where a Brāhmaṇa and a Kṣatriya have insulted one another, the ‘first amercement’ on the latter.—According to Bālambhaṭṭī (2.207) the rule refers to cases where the defamation is in regard to a heinous offence;—It is quoted in Vivādacintāmaṇi (Calcutta, p. 71), which says that this refers to cases of mutual defamation between the Brāhmaṇa and the Kṣatriya, and adds that the same law holds good as between the Vaiśya and the Śūdra also-;—and in Vīramitrodaya (Vyavahāra, 150a).


Comparative notes by various authors

(verses 8.276-278)

(See texts under 268-270.)

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