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:

तन्तुवायो दशपलं दद्यादेकपलाधिकम् ।
अतोऽन्यथा वर्तमानो दाप्यो द्वादशकं दमम् ॥ ३९७ ॥

tantuvāyo daśapalaṃ dadyādekapalādhikam |
ato'nyathā vartamāno dāpyo dvādaśakaṃ damam || 397 ||

The weaver shall repay ten ‘palas’ with one ‘pala’ added to it; if he acts otherwise than this, he should be made to pay a fine of twelve.—(397)


Medhātithi’s commentary (manubhāṣya):

The ‘weaver’ is one who weaves yarns, and makes clot? (cloth?) for garments, etc.

When he has received ‘ten palas’ of yarn, he should return a piece of cloth weighing one more ‘pala.’ He should make his repayments at this rate of interest. Special considerations may be made in regard to the coarseness or fineness of the texture of the cloth, or to the fact of its being wooly and so forth.

Otherwise there shall be a fine of twelve ‘paṇas.’

This punishment is to be inflicted in the case of non-payment of the interest. In the case of non-payment of the principal, he would have to pay according to the rule laid down by the guild.

Thus in the case of the principal consisting of ‘twenty palas’ of yarn, if the man does not pay the interest, his fine shall he double; and so on, the fine being computed triple, quadruple and so forth.

Others hold that the fine is to be paid to the king.—(397)


Explanatory notes by Ganganath Jha

Dvādaśakam’—‘Twelve paṇas’ (Kullūka and Medhātithi, who does not say ‘palas,’ as asserted by Buhler);—‘twelve times the value of the yarn’(Govindarāja);—‘one-twelth of the value of the yarn’ (Nārāyaṇa).

This verse is quoted in Aparārka, (p. 785), which explains ‘dvādaśakam’ as ‘fine consisting of 12 kārṣāpaṇas’;—and in Vivādaratnākara (p. 311), which adds the following notes:—‘Tantuvāya,’ the weaver of cloth, having received 10 palas of yarn, shall, after weaving it, give to the owner cloth weighing 11 palas; otherwise acting,—i.e., having received 10 palas of yam, if he gives cloth weighing only 10 palas,—he should pay a fine. It adds that this rule refers to coarse yams.


Comparative notes by various authors

Yājñavalkya (2.179-180).—‘In the matter of woolen and cotton yarns, of the ordinary counts, the increase is 10 Palas per 100 Palas; it is 5 Palas per 100, when the yarns are of the middling count; and 3 Palas per cent, in the case of very fine yarns. In the case of clothes that are embroidered, or worked with wool, the loss in weight is the thirtieth part; in the case of garments of silk or of bark, there is neither increase nor decrease.’

Nārada (Aparārka, p. 784, and Vivādaratnākara, p. 312).—‘In the case of cotton and woolen cloth, there is an increase of 10 Palas per cent .; this in the case of thick yarns; in the case of yarns of middle counts it is 5 Palas per cent; and in that of fine yarns, it is only 3 Palas per cent. In the case of cloth that is embroidered or wool-worked, there is a decrease by the thirtieth part. In the case of cloth of silk or of bark, there is neither decrease nor increase.’

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