by Helen M. Johnson | 1931 | 742,503 words
This is the English translation of the Trishashti Shalaka Purusha Charita (literally “The lives of the sixty-three illustrious People”), a Sanskrit epic poem written by Hemachandra in the twelfth century. The work relates the history and legends of important figures in the Jain faith. These 63 persons include: the twenty four tirthankaras , the t...
Thirty-six weapons seem to be the conventional number for a full equipment, with Jain authors. In the Prabandhacintāmaṇi there are two references to a man learning the use of thirty-six weapons (Tawney, pp. 32, 120). But apparently the number only was fixed, not the weapons. I have found two lists of 36 in Jain works, but the names vary. As so little has been done in this field, I append a list taken from the commentary to the Dvyāśrayakāvya (11. 51), where Hem. refers to the ‘thirty-six weapons.’ It is carious to note that the two mentioned in the text are not included in the commentator’s list.
- cakra, discus,
- dhanus, bow,
- vajra, thunderbolt,
- khaḍga, sword,
- kṣurikā, knife,
- tomara, javelin (Hindī),
- kunta, lance,
- triśūla, trident,
- śakti, spear,
- paraśu, axe,
- bhalli, a kind of spear or lance (PH s. V.). This is also the vernacular meaning, though MW quotes ‘a kind of arrow.’
- bhindimāla, sling. Occurs in Marāṭhī (bhiṇḍīpāla).
- muṣṭi, hilt?
- śaṅku, dart,
- pāśa, noose,
- pattiśa, ‘spear with sharp edge or some other weapon with three points’ (MW),
- ṛṣṭi, ‘spear, lance, sword,’ (MW),
- kaṇaya (kanaka), arrow (PH deśi),
- hala, plough-share,
- muśala, mace,
- gulikā, a ball as a missle,
- kartarī, knife. (H. katar),
- karapatra, saw,
- taravāri, one-edged sword,
- kuddāla, pick-axe (H and M),
- gophaṇi, sling (PH),
- ḍāha? perhaps a fire-arm of some kind,
- mudgara, hammer,
- gadā, club,
- ghana, ‘iron club, mace, weapon shaped like a hammer’ (MW),
- karavālikā, ‘a cudgel, short club, or wooden sword, a sword or one-edged knife’ (MW).
In the Prācīnagurjarakāvyasaṅgraha (GOS XIII, pp. 106-107) there is another list of 36, which also contains quite a number with unknown meaning. The Lekhapaddhati (GOS XIX, p. 97) gives a list of 40 weapons, and the Ratnakośa (ms. in the Baroda Oriental Institute, p. 17) gives a list of 30. These are all the Jain lists I have found.