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:

मातापितृविहीनो यस्त्यक्तो वा स्यादकारणात् ।
आत्मानमर्पयेद् यस्मै स्वयन्दत्तस्तु स स्मृतः ॥ १७७ ॥

mātāpitṛvihīno yastyakto vā syādakāraṇāt |
ātmānamarpayed yasmai svayandattastu sa smṛtaḥ || 177 ||

If a boy, being deprived of his parents, or being abandoned by them without cause, offers himself to a man,—he is called the self-offered son.’—(177)


Medhātithi’s commentary (manubhāṣya):

(verses 9.173-178)

[The Bhāṣya on these verses is not available in any of the manuscripts.]


Explanatory notes by Ganganath Jha

This verse is quoted in Aparārka (p. 738), which explains that the ‘Kāraṇa’, cause, for abandoning, consists in the child having become an out-cast,—and ‘sparśayet’, offers, surrenders.

It is quoted in Vivādaratnākara (p. 571), which has the following notes:—‘Akāraṇāt’, without fault,—‘ātmānam sparśayet’ should offer himself with the words,—‘I am your son—in the Parāśaramādhava (Prāyaścitta, p. 38);—in Nṛsiṃhaprasāda (Vyavahāra 38a);—in Vyavahāra-Bālambhaṭṭī (p. 546);—in Śrāddhakriyakaumudī (p. 455);—in Śuddhikaumudī (p. 92);—and in Vīramitrodaya (Vyavahāra 1(?)89b), which says that the abandoning of the child should be only because of inability to support it, and not by reason of the child having become an out-cast and so forth.


Comparative notes by various authors

Baudhāyana (2.3.28).—‘He is called a Svayandatta, self-given, son, who, abandoned by his father and mother, gives himself to a stranger.’

Vaśiṣṭha (17.33-5).—‘The fourth is the son self-given.’

Viṣṇu (15.22-23).—‘The son self-given is the tenth;—and he belongs to him to whom he gives himself,’

Yājñavalkya (2.131).—‘One who gives himself is the self-given son.’

Arthaśāstra (p. 41).—‘The Upagata, self-offered, son is one who offers himself, or is offered by his kinsmen, as a son to a stranger.’

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