Alamkaras mentioned by Vamana

by Pratim Bhattacharya | 2016 | 65,462 words

This page relates ‘Alamkara-shastra according to Mahimabhatta (11th 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”)

10: Alaṃkāra-śāstra according to Mahimabhaṭṭa (11th century)

Mahimabhaṭṭa (c. 11th cen. A.D.), one of the prominent critics of the ‘dhvani-theory’, has tried to demonstrate that the instances of dhvani put forth by Ānandavardhana are to be included as ‘kāvyānumiti’. He has accepted only two senses of words—the expressed sense or ‘vācyārtha’ and the inferable sense or the ‘anumeārtha’. He includes poetic figures or alaṃkāras chiefly in the inferable sense and also opines that they can become the expressed sense also.

According to Mahimabhaṭṭa the poetic figures are to be included in the expressed sense–

alaṃkārāṇāṃ cābhidhātmatvamupagataṃ teṣāṃ bhaṅgībhaṇitibhedarūpatvāt/
  —Vyakti-viveka (of Mahimabhaṭṭa) vimarśa-I

Mahimabhaṭṭa probably follows Kuntaka in declaring alaṃkāras as ‘bhaṅgibhaṇitibheda’. However, he has not given the supreme emphasis to the alaṃkāras as Kuntaka has laid upon.

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