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:

यथार्हमेतानभ्यर्च्य ब्राह्मणैः सह पार्थिवः ।
सान्त्वेन प्रशमय्यादौ स्वधर्मं प्रतिपादयेत् ॥ ३९१ ॥

yathārhametānabhyarcya brāhmaṇaiḥ saha pārthivaḥ |
sāntvena praśamayyādau svadharmaṃ pratipādayet || 391 ||

Having, with the assistance of Brāhmaṇas, received them with due honour, the king shall, at first, pacify them with soothing words, and then explain to them their duty.—(391)


Medhātithi’s commentary (manubhāṣya):

What the king should do under the circumstances is now explained.

Having received each of the men with such honour as he deserves, by reason of his qualifications,—he should, ‘with the assiatance of Brāhmaṇas’—his ministers and priests,—this ‘assistance’ being rendered in the reception, or in the explaining of duties. It is only in the latter that the true character of the Brāhmaṇa becomes revealed.

With the assistance of these Brāhmaṇas, he shall explain to them their duty.

The assistance of the Brāhmaṇas having been insisted upon, the declaration that the king shall explain the duties is meant to indicate the predominance of the king, who is to associate the Brāhmaṇas with himself. And this predominance is due to the fact that kings never lose their temper.

The king should explain the duties to them after having at first ‘pacified them’—i.e., having soothed their temper—‘with soothing words’—affectionate and complimentary words.—(391)


Explanatory notes by Ganganath Jha

This verse is quoted in Kṛtyakalpataru (10a), which explains ‘sāntvena praśamayya’ as ‘having allayed all anger and ill-feeling by means of conciliatory words;—and in Vīramitrodaya (Vyavahāra, 10a).

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