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:

पणं यानं तरे दाप्यं पौरुषोऽर्धपणं तरे ।
पादं पशुश्च योषित्च पादार्धं रिक्तकः पुमान् ॥ ४०४ ॥

paṇaṃ yānaṃ tare dāpyaṃ pauruṣo'rdhapaṇaṃ tare |
pādaṃ paśuśca yoṣitca pādārdhaṃ riktakaḥ pumān || 404 ||

At a ferry-crossing, a cart shall be made to pay one ‘paṇa’; one man’s burden half a ‘paṇa,’ an animal and a woman a quarter ‘paṇa,’ and an unloaded man one half of a quarter.—(404)


Medhātithi’s commentary (manubhāṣya):

At a river-crossing, a ‘cart’—a conveyance, in the form of a chariot and other things,—should pay one ‘paṇa.’ This is the king’s tax to be paid by all carts that come in loaded with commodities and go out again after having delivered these commodities, for bringing in another supply.

One man’s burden’—when one man’s load of commodities is brought in, the duty payable is half-paṇa.

Animal’— bullock, buffalo and the like;—as also a ‘woman’—should pay a quarter-paṇa.

The unloaded man,’— who is carrying no load, should be made to pay half of the quarter-paṇa. A small toll is levied from the unburdened man, since he can cross the river by himself, and hence the help accorded to him is comparatively small. While a woman, who is unable to cross by herself, is made to pay more.

On a ferry-crossing’— for the purposes of crossing.—(404)


Explanatory notes by Ganganath Jha

This verse is quoted in Vīramitrodaya (Rājanīti, p, 270), which adds the following notes:—This rule applies to the case of unladen carts;—an empty cart, for crossing a ferry, should be made to pay one paṇa;—a man with load, one-half of a paṇa, cattle and women, a quarter paṇa and a man without load the eighth part of a paṇa.

It is quoted in Aparārka (p. 834), which adds the following explanatory notes:—The Pālki and such conveyances, for crossing a ferry, should be made to pay one paṇa,—a man should pay one-half of a paṇa,—cattle and woman should pay a quarter paṇa,—as also a man, with only his two hands, i.e., without any load.

It is quoted in Vivādaratnākara (p. 640), which adds that ‘yānam’ here stands for the empty chariot, and so forth;—‘pauruṣaḥ’, load carried by one man,—‘pādārdham’, the eighth part of a paṇa.

It is quoted in Mitākṣarā (2.263), where Bālambhaṭṭī has the following notes:—An empty cart should pay a paṇa,—a man with a load, one-half of a paṇa,—cattle and woman (with the exception of those specified below in 407) a quarter paṇa; and a man without load, the eighth part of a paṇa. It adds that this refers to river-crossings; the rates for sea-voyages are different.


Comparative notes by various authors

(verses 8.404-406)

Vaśiṣṭha (19.21, Vivādaratnākara, p. 639).—‘The toll for crossing a river whose width is within an arrow-reach is 8 māṣas; for crossing a river whose width is more than an arrow-reach is a quarter of a Kārṣāpaṇa; and that for crossing a river in which there is scanty water, it is one māṣa; it is to be one and a half times these in the case of women...... If a man swims a river-crossing, he should he made to pay a sum hundred times of the toll.’

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