by Ananda Coomaraswamy | 1917 | 16,981 words | ISBN-13: 9788121500210
This is the English translation of the Abhinaya-darpana by Nandikeshvara: an encyclopedic manual of the art of gesticulation. It belongs to a wide range of literature known as Natya-shastra: the ancient Indian art of dramatic performance, theatrics, dance and music. The Abhinaya Darpana is an abridgement of the Bharatarnava, a much larger exposit...
Combined Hands (samyutta hastāni):
According to another book the (twenty-six) combined hands are as follows:
Avahittha: Śukatuṇçla hands held against the heart. The patron deity is Mārkaṇḍeya. Usage: debility, wasting of the body, eager interest, thinness.
Caturaśra (square): Kaṭaka-mukha hands are held before the chest. Patron deity Varāhi. Usage: churning, Jakkiṇīnaṭana, holding, milking, covering with cloths, wearing pearls, dragging ropes, tying the girdle, tying the bodice, holding flowers, etc., plying the fly-whisk.
Tala-mukha (palms facing): two hands raised face to face before the chest, (not touching). Patron deity Vijñarāja. Usage: embrace, stout things, a thick pillar, a sweet-sounding drum.
Āviddha-vakra (swinging curve): vyāvṛtta Patāka hands are shown with grace and with (movement of) the elbows. Patron deity Tumburu. Usage: tying the girdle, difference, slenderness of waist, folk dances (deṣya naṭana).
Nitamba (buttock): Patāka hands face upwards, turned over, (extended from) the shoulder to the buttocks. Patron deity Agastya. Usage: weariness, descent or entry (avataraṇa), astonishment, ecstasy, etc.
Makara: Ardha-candra hands, one enclosing the other, palms downwards, the thumbs moving. Patron deity Mahendra. Usage: the sea, overflowing of a river, deer-face, prosperity, solidity, platform, crocodile.
Udvṛtta (asunder): one Haṃsa-pakṣa hand held face downwards and one face upwards. Patron deity Vāsiṣṭha. Usage: modesty, simile, torment, thorns etc., difference, consideration.
Viprakīrna (loosed): Svastika hands quickly separated. Patron deity Dakṣina-mūrti. Usage: drawing away the end of the robe (celāñcala), releasing.
Ardha-recita: of two Recita hands one is held palm downwards. Patron deity Nandikeśvara. Usage: invitation, giving presents, concealing actions.
Nalinī-padmakośa: Padmakośa hands are outward-turned and crossed. Patron deity Śeṣa. Usage: nāga-bandha, buds, making equal distribution, cluster of flowers, the number ten, Gaṇḍa-bheruṇḍa. (Identical with Nalina-padmakośa; Introduction, pp. 4, 5.)
Udveṣṭitālapadma: Alapadma hands are held on the chest and twisted upwards. Patron deity Sakti. Usage: husband, humble words, the breasts, full-blown lotus, saying “I am beloved”, conversation, indicating desires. (Plates XI e XIIID.)
Ulbaṇa (abundance): the same hands held close to the eyes. Patron deity Vijñeśa. Usage: large clusters of flowers, eyes.
Lālita: the same hands crossed near the head. Patron deity Vaiṣṇavī. Usage: sāl-tree, mountain.
Footnotes and references:
Quite distinct from the Gaja or Daṇḍa hand of T. A. Gopinatha Rao, “Hindu Iconography”, Vol. I, pt. i, p. 16, and ibid., PI. V, fig. 12, illustrated here on Plates I and III.