Alamkaras mentioned by Vamana

by Pratim Bhattacharya | 2016 | 65,462 words

This page relates ‘Alamkara-shastra according to Rudrata (9th century)’ of the study on Alamkaras (‘figure of speech’) mentioned by Vamana in his Kavyalankara-sutra Vritti, a treatise dealing with the ancient Indian science of Rhetoric and Poetic elements. Vamana flourished in the 8th century and defined thirty-one varieties of Alamkara (lit. “anything which beautifies a Kavya or poetic composition”)

5: Alaṃkāra-śāstra according to Rudraṭa (9th century)

Another follower of the Alaṃkāra school Rudraṭa (c. 9th cen. A.D.), in his work Kāvyālaṃkāra, has treated the poetic figures in a considerably detailed manner. He has also mentioned a large number of poetic figures some of which are entirely new innovations. Rudraṭa’s treatment of alaṃkāras is quite distinct and elaborate from his predecessors. He classifies the alaṃkāras into two groups–śabdālaṃkāras and arthālaṃkāras which are again divided into various sub-groups. These sub-groups are named after the general nature or the characteristics of these alaṃkāras.

The śabdālaṃkāras are classified into five (5) broad principles or heads–

  1. vakrokti,
  2. śleṣa,
  3. citra,
  4. anuprāsa and
  5. yamaka.

The arthālaṃkāras are classified under four (4) sub-groups–

  1. vāstava,
  2. aupamya,
  3. atiśaya and
  4. śleṣa.

This classification of alaṃkāras by Rudraṭa is not widely accepted by the later rhetoricians but later theorists like Mammaṭahave followed his analysis and definitions closely.

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