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:

दासी घटमपां पूर्णं पर्यस्येत् प्रेतवत् पदा ।
अहोरात्रमुपासीरन्नशौचं बान्धवैः सह ॥ १८३ ॥

dāsī ghaṭamapāṃ pūrṇaṃ paryasyet pretavat padā |
ahorātramupāsīrannaśaucaṃ bāndhavaiḥ saha || 183 ||

A female slave shall overturn a jar full of water with her foot, as in the case of the dead; and they, along with the relations, shall observe the ‘uncleanliness’ for the day and night.—(183)


Medhātithi’s commentary (manubhāṣya):

As in the case of the dead’— This is an injunction of what should be done (in the case of the dead).

The female slave shall overturn with her foot the water-jar, saying—‘This is for so and so’ (naming the outcast).

After this has been done, it is necessary to observe ‘un-cleanliness’ during the day and night.

Along with the relations’— They shall all sit in one place, for that day.

The naming of the ‘female slave’ indicates that the Sapiṇḍas should not do it themselves.

“If that be so, and the Sapiṇḍas do not do this act themselves, what should be the difference between ‘Sapiṇḍas’ and ‘relations,’ in view of which it has been said that all this should be done in the presence of relations, priests and elders? Since all (Sapiṇḍas as well as Relations) would be helping the offering only by their presence, and thus acting like an indirect accessory.”

It is not so; ‘Sapiṇḍas’ and others of that class are the ‘performers’ of the act of offering in the sense that it is they that direct it; while ‘Relations,’ ‘priests’ and the rest are brought together only with a view to some spiritual effect.—(183)


Explanatory notes by Ganganath Jha

This verse is quoted in Madanapārijāta (p. 964), which explains ‘pretarat’ as wearing the upper cloth over the right shoulder and so forth;—in Mitākṣarā (3.295), to the effect that the slave-girl may make the offerings under orders of the paternal relations of the outcast—it explains ‘pretavat’ as implying that the offender should face the south, wear the upper cloth over the right shoulder and so forth;—and in Nirṇayasindhu (p. 408).


Comparative notes by various authors

(verses 11.182-185)

[See above, 9.201.]

See Comparative notes for Verse 11.182.

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