From the Jacket
If not peerless as an Indologist, Pandurang Vaman Kane (1880-1972) may have barely a few equals. A legitimate recipient of many, many enviable awards, including the 'Bharat Ratna' the highest national honour in India, he was the distinguished Sanskritist, National Professor of Indology, Vice-Chancellor of Bombay University, Member of Parliament (nominated), and entitled 'Mahamahopadhyaya'. And was a prolific author too-his literary writings in English, Marathi and Sanskrit having been estimated to run across nearly 15, 000 printed pages. Yet, M.M. Kane is to stay immortalized for his multivolume History of Dharmasastra: an encyclopaedic, at once authoritative work on ancient India's religious and civil laws.
This volume puts together nineteen of his essays to reinforce Professor Kane's unique insightfulness into Dharamasastra literature. Descreetly culled from the prodigious mass of his writings, these essays show how Dr. Kane conjures some of the most obscure, hitherto-unnoticed sources not just to dispel widely-accepted fallacies or straighten out distortions, but (importantly) to project the fabulous legacy of India's Dharmasastra literature: in both its variegated richness and unflawed authenticity.
Covering diverse themes from Dharmasastra literature: ranging from Pauranic legends to the Pauranic worldview of dharma and sacrifices, from the literary use of the Mahabharata citations to the questions of identity and chronology of Dharmasastra authors, Professor Kane's collection shows how King Bhoja evidenced the relevance of Dharmasastras to astrology; how far the Matsyapurana is indebted to Kautilya's Arthasastra; or how, in turn, Kautilya's classic compares with Kamasastra or Manu-Smrti; and how Vijnanesvara is positioned vis-à-vis his predecessors.
About the Author
Prof. S.G. Moghe is an eminent Sanskritist, specializing in Dharmasastra and the Purva-Mimamsa system of traditional philosophy. An extensively published author and recipient of the prestigious Springer Research Scholarship (1981-83) for his work, Purva Mimamsa and Alamkara Sastra, he has been honoured, by the Government of Maharashtra, as a distinguished Sanskrit scholar'.
Dr. Moghe has recently retired as Head of the Sanskrit Department, Government. Arts and Science College, Aurangabad.
I have great pleasure in presenting the book Professor Kane's Contribution to Dharmasastra Literature to the world of Indology. Dharmasastra is my favourite subject and hence Dr. Kane's writings on Dharmasastra have proved to be a perennial source of inspiration for me.
In this book, I am presenting nineteen papers of Dr. P.V. Kane dealing with different aspects of Indology such as authenticity of the text, the chronological position of some works and authors, estimates of the style and views of some commentators. Restoration of the lost text, the views of some authors whose works are not available to us now, evaluation of the rare manuscript on the Dharmasastra, challenging the meaning of the word Dharmasastra as interpreted by other scholars, the resemblance and differences between Vedic and Puranic traditions, filling up the gaps in the works of scholars and in Dr. Kane's own work as well, influence of one work over the other, offering illuminating explanations of some important words and removing some doubts relating to court matter in the works, cultural study of some practices (the tilaka mark, etc.) and examining the utility of other sciences in studying Dharmasastra.
In the 'Introduction' to this book, I have discussed most of these points for the interest of the readers of Indology.
I have added a chapter titled 'Dr. Kane's Method and Interpretation A review', in which I have also surveyed some articles, books and Ph.D. theses written on Dharmasastra over the last thirty years or so.
It must be mentioned here that I have included some material in the 'References' to the papers either in the light of the matter in the History of Dharmasastra, or in the light of the further progress made in the subject so as to make the discussion complete, as much as my ability would allow.
I take this opportunity to express my heart-felt thanks to Kane Memorial Trust, Bombay, for providing me with a substantial grant for the publication of this book. In fact, I do not have the words to express my feelings of indebtedness to the Kane Memorial Trust which has always encouraged me in my research activities.
For bringing out this valuable collection of papers of Dr. Kane, full credit must be given to D.K. Printworld (P) Ltd., New Delhi.
Dr. P.V. Kane, one may say, does not require any kind of formal introduction as his name is well-known to many and, in particular, to all those interested in the field of Indology. His contribution to this discipline is vast and of great depth, so that it is next to impossible to attempt to study it in a single book. What we have undertaken to do in this book, Professor Kane's Contribution to Dharmasastra Literature, is to present some of Dr. P.V. Kane's highly interesting papers on Dharmasastra literature.
Bharat Tatna Dr. P.V. Kane's achievement is remarkable and, indeed, unique. A scholar whose literary output exceeds nearly 15, 000 printed pages in three languages, Dr. P.V. Kane's magnum opus is the History of Dharmasastra which has been universally acclaimed as an authoritative work on the Hindu religious and civil law of ancient and medieval India.
Dr. Pandurang Vaman Kane (1880-1972) was born in a middle class family of Konkan. He completed his schooling and college studies against heavy odds but with flying colours, securing many prizes and scholarships in the offing. His essays, "Aryan Manners and Morals as Depicted in the Epics" and "History of Alamkara Literature", won prizes of the Bombay University. Dr. Kane distinguished himself as an advocate with a penchant for higher Sanskrit studies. He was made Wilson Philological Lecture and Springer Research Scholar by the Bombay University and he served as the Professor of Law for six years.
Professor P.V. Kane's vast literary output is contained in his books and articles, and his reviews. His History of Sanskrit Poetics is regarded as a work of fundamental significance. His monographs on the Purvamimamsa system and the ancient geography of Maharashtra, and his critical edition of Nilakantha's Vyavaharamayukha are valuable works. His most remarkable achievement, however, is his History of Dharmasastra on which he worked steadfastly for nearly 35 years. The first volume of the History of Dharmasastra appeared in 1930 (later revised). The successful completion of this monumental project was formally announced in 1962 by the then President of India, Dr. Radhakrishnan. This 6,500 page, five-volume work said to have been accomplished single-handedly is known for its authoritative and thorough treatment of ancient and medieval India's Hindu religious and civil law.
In the paper, 'Dharmasutra of Sankha-Likhita', Dr. Kane restores the text of Sankha-Likhita, which is now lost to us but which was available to the scholars of Dharmasastra up to the beginning of the fourteenth century AD. Dr. Kane, in his introduction to this restored text, points out the position of this Dharmasutra in the vast range of Dharmasastra literature. He notes that it was studied by the students of the white Yajurveda. The ordinances of this Sutra were to be followed, according to Parasara, only in the dvapara age. Besides, this sutra work is in prose and verse. Dr. Kane confidently remarks that the smrti or the Dharmasutra of Sankha-Likhita as published in the Jivananda collection or in the Anandasrama collection (Poona) are later works. With his vast knowledge of Dharmasastra, he points out that Sankha-Likhita is quoted as an authority by Vijnanesvara in his Mitaksara on the Yajnavalkya-smrti, Medhatithi, and Laksmidhara in his Krtyakalpataru. In this respect, he also points out that comparatively early writers sometimes ascribe verses or passages to Sankha only or Likhita alone.
Dr. Kane places this work which resembles the style of Kautilya's Arthasastra more than that of the Dharmasutras by Apastamba and Gautama between 300 BC and AD 100 He says that the Dharmasutra of Sankha-Likhita was fortunate in getting an early commentator though his name cannot be identified. But since the commentator of this sutra is referred to by Kalpataru and Candesvara in his Vivadaratnakara, it is evident that the commentary was written before AD 1100.
While discussing the importance of the Dharmasutra of Sankha-Likhita, Dr. Kane points out that it enumerates several kinds of ordeals on which other Dharmasutra works are silent. On some topics like separation, inheritance and succession, this Dharmasutra gives us more detailed information as compared to the information available in other sutra works. In passing, he adds that the limits of Aryavarta as described in this work are more extensive than those indicated by the information available in the Dharmasutra works of Vasistha and Baudhyana. But he also significantly points out that there are discrepancies in the prose and poetry portions ascribed to Sankha-Likhita. The prose Sankha (passage No. 64), for instance, allows a brahmana to have a sudra wife, though the verse Sankha does not allow it (No. 65).
This contribution on the part of Dr. Kane can be held as a model by others in the field of Indology in their efforts towards restoring any lost text in any branch.
In the paper, 'Asahaya, the Commentator of the Gautama-Dharmasutra and the Naradasmrti', Dr. Kane utilizes the knowledge of Dharmasastra literature for throwing light on the work of Asahaya. He discusses the peculiar views of Asahaya and tries to fix the probable date of this commentator (traces it to earlier than AD 850).
Dr. Kane points out with the help of Haralata of Aniruddha that Asahaya is the author of a commentary on the Gautama-dharmasutra. On the basis of Prataparudradeva's Sarasvativilasa, Dr. Kane states that Asahaya also seems to have written a commentary on the Manusmrti. In this regard, he refers to the Vivadaratnakara which quotes the words of Asahaya on the Manusmrti. Asahaya's commentaries on the Naradasmrti. Gautama-dharmasutra and the Manusmrti are lost to us.
Dr. Kane enlightens the readers on the position of Asahaya in the later Dharmasastra literature. He shows that Asahaya's views were supported by Vijnanesvara on the rights of sisters when their brothers are separated. Candesvara in his Vivadaratnakara quotes the work Prakasa as referring to the views of Asahaya. Dr. Kane also informs us that the Sarasvativilasa, which of all works on vyavahara quotes Asahaya the most, tells us that the views of Asahaya. Medhatithi and Vijnanesvara coincide to some extent.
In his paper titled 'The Tantravartika and the Dharmasastra Literature', Dr. Kane takes up important passages from the Tantravartika of the mimamsaka Kumarilabhatta (eighth century AD) which have a bearing on Dharmasastra literature, for study. He notes that these passages help us in understanding the development and chronology of Dharmasastra literature.
On Kumarila's references, Dr. Kane notes that the author refers to the work of Gautama more frequently than other authors of the Dharmasutras (there being at least a dozen quotations). In a few cases, the Dharmasutra of Apastamba is referred to; a little of Baudhayana's Dharmasutra and that of Sankha-Likhita also find a place. According to Dr. Kane, quotations from other Dharmasutras cannot be identified that is, if they exist at all in the Tantravartika. Dr. Kane points out that the Tantravartika stands in a special relation to the Manusmrti. More than twenty verses from the extant Manusmrti, wholly or partly, find a place in the Tantravartika it is remarkable, Dr. Kane notes, that a verse treated as interpolated in the Manusmrti editions because it has not been commented upon by commentators like Medhatithi and Kulluka, is quoted in the Tantravartika. Dr. Kane asserts that the extant Manusmrti must be many centuries older than AD 750, and Sabara would have belonged to a period certainly before AD 500 and may be earlier by a few centuries.
Dr. Kane observes that Kumarila, in his interesting discussion on sadacara, sets out in detail how the high personages of old transgressed the Law but also tries to explain away most of the transgressions. It may be relevant to note that Dr. Kane, in his History of Dharmasastra (Vol. III), refers to such an attempt on the part of Kumarila under the 'Mimamsa Apologetics'.
Dr. Kane states that as Kumarila looks upon the Puranas as authoritative works, some of the extant Puranas would have been composed many centuries before AD 750.
In 'Passages form the Rajamartanda on Tithis, Vratas and Vtsavas', Dr. Kane presents portions of the Rajamartanda (a work of King Bhoja concerned with astrological matters in relation to the Dharmasastra) dealing with tithes, vratas and utsavas which are compiled from three manuscripts. He informs us that a total of 1462 verses are contained in the Rajamartanda (of which he presents 286 in this paper).
Dr. Kane includes references to some medieval digests from where some of the verses occurring in the Rajamartanda are quoted. He has consulted digest works such as Kalaviveka of Jimutavahana, Krtyatattva of Raghunandana, Krtyaratnakara of Candesvara, Tithi-tattva of Raghunandana, Suddhi-kaumudi and Varsakriyakaumudi of Govindananda, and Puranas where some of the stanzas are found. Dr. Kane reminds us in this context that not only does the Rajamartanda borrow many verses from other works without acknowledging but also, some digests quote these borrowed verses as those of the Rajamartanda.
'The Meaning of Acaryah' is an attempt by Dr. Kane to show that the use of the word acarya by Kautilya should not be taken as a reference to the author's teacher but to previous great writers. Dr. Kane examines the correctness of this meaning by consulting the tradition in respect of usage of this expression. He examines the Apastamba-dharmasutra, Gautama-dharmasutra, Manusmrti and Vasistha-dharmasutra to conclude that the first meaning of the word is 'teacher of the Veda'. Another meaning that developed was 'founder or any great teacher of a sastra'. Dr. Kane gives other meanings from usage by various writers and works: 'great men endowed with the qualities of an acaryah' (Sayanacarya); 'predecessors' (Yaska); 'inspired seers of the Upanisads' (Harita-dharmasutra); 'all teachers'; 'great teachers of dharma, artha and moksa' (Vatsyayana's Kamasutra). Finally, Dr. Ken cites passages from Kautilya's own writings to conclude that the word was used by him in the sense of 'some teachers' and thus referred to great writers of earlier times.
In the paper titled 'The Mahabharata Verses and very Ancient Dharmasutras and other Works', several verses are set out which occur in the Mahabharata as well as in the Mahabhasya of Patanjali, Apastamba-dharmasutra, Baudhayana-dharmasutra. Vasistha-dharmasutra and some other works (Yajnavalkya-smrti, Venisamhara, Narada-smrti), and the different readings available are noted. Such occurrence is interpreted by Dr. Kane as a result of the same family devoting itself to the growth of the Itihasa-Purana and Dharmasastra literature.
Dr. Kane begins by stating that the Mahabharata (the original work) our of which the present text of the epic grew must have been composed before 500 BC. In an attempt to explain the itihasa and purana, Dr. Kane conjectures that the itihasa of the Upanisad period was gradually incorporated into what became the Mahabharata and the Purana of that period was expanded into the many Puranas that emerged later. Dr. Kane concludes that the Manusmrti might have originally contained verses in the tristubh metre but later, the anustubh metre was uniformly employed.
In the paper on the Dvaitanirnaya, a work authored by Sankarabhatta, Dr. Kane points out that the purpose of that work is to dispel doubts on ceremonial usages and rites, and on matters of impurity in births and deaths by giving decisive opinions.
The Dvaitanirnaya, he informs, has various specific issues for discussion including the navaratra, a question whether the maternal grandfather is to be included in the prausthapadi sraddha along with paternal ancestors and the siddhanta view regarding the giving of gifts. In discussing Sankarabhatta's response to the views of others, Dr. Kane points out that Sankarabhatta agreed with as well as refuted both Hemadri and Madhava (Parasara-Madhava). He looked upon Vijnanesvara with great respect but also found fault with him.
Dr. Kane, through his study, attempts to shed further light on a major controversy whether Haradatta, the author of commentaries on the Dharmasutras of Apastamba and Gautama, is the very same Haradatta who authored Padamanjari, the celebrated work on grammer. Sankarabhatta, he shows, made no distinction between the two authors. Dr. Kane quotes a passage on adoption attributed to Saunaka which is of much interest to modern students of Hindu law and gives Sankarabhatta's view on it.
Dr. Kane mentions the sutras and adhikaranas of Jaimini referred to by Sankarabhatta and the other works quoted by him in the Dvaitanirnaya. Sankarabhatta is also identified as the author of a commentary on the Sastradipika of Parthasarathi.
Dr. Kane warns us against dismissing the Dvaitanirnaya as an uninteresting work dealing with trivialities. The value of the work should be ascertained bearing in mind that Sankarabhatta was writing for his time.
In his paper 'Vedic Mantras and Legends in the Puranas' Dr. Kane maintains that though it is generally held that the Pauranic tradition is different from the Vedic tradition, yet it should not be forgotten by a careful student that the Puranic tradition has not ignored the Vedic tradition. In fact, it tries to build on the foundations of the Vedic tradition. This is proved by Dr. Kane by taking examples from the Brahma Purana.
He points out that in the Brahma Purana, several Vedic verses and texts are reproduced without accents. Besides, the Purana authors make the best use of Vedic legends such as Sarama-Pani, Hariscandra Upakhyana, Indra killing Vrtra, Namuci, etc. for glorifying the importance of holy places, such as Soma Tirtha, Mrgavyadha Tirtha and Putra Tirtha. Some passages of the Brahma Purana, though not quoting words from the Veda, give a close paraphrase of the Vedic texts.
In a lengthy but studious article, Dr. Kane studies the views held by the predecessors of Vijnanesvara, the author of Mitaksara, and estimates Vijnanesvara's debt to them. Six writers named by the Mitaksara who wrote commentaries or nibandhas on the Dharamasastra are taken up for study.
Dr. Kane points out that Vijnanesvara and the commentator. Asahaya agree on certain matters, such as the definition of daya and the explanation of the word 'fourth share' in the verse of Yajnavalkya stating that unmarried sisters are entitled to have their marriages celebrated by their brothers who must give a fourth share to them.
Dr. Kane discusses the different views of Visvarupa and the Mitaksara of Vijnanesvara. Their interpretation of the Yajnavalkya-smrti, in this context, is well illustrated. Visvarupa's commentary. Balakrida on the Yajnavalkya-smrti, Dr. Kane points out, is saturated with the lore of the Purvamimamsa. The views of Visvarupa quoted by other writers are examined. Some general conclusions are also made that the printed text of Visvarupa is largely authoritative and some later commentators have wrongly ascribed certain views to Visvarupa.
Some interesting observations are made concerning Bharuci, a propounder of the Visistadvaita, such as the period when he flourished and that he could be identified with Bharuci, the writer on dharmasastra. Disagreements in the views of Vijnanesvara and Bharuci are discussed with some interesting examples. The views of Bharuci are collected mainly from the Sarasvativilasa.
Dr. Kane maintains that the commentary of Srikara is in the nature of a comprehensive digest and explains some of Srikara's views in thirteen examples obtained from the works of Jimutavahana, the Smrticandrika, the Sarasvativilasa and the Viramitrodaya. A view of Srikara's relating to succession of widows as heirs which is disapproved by the Mitaksara is noted by Dr. Kane.
Dr. Kane observes that the Mitaksara refers to the views of Medhatithi who wrote a bhasya on the Manusmrti and Buhler in his introduction to the Manusmrti does give a good deal of information about Medhatithi. Dr Kane then makes a concise statement of the results of Buhler's study and adds details which, he says, were not noticed by Buhler. An attempt is made to trace the probable date of Medhatithi.
According to Dr. Kane, there are many considerations favouring identification of Dharesvara with Bhojadeva of Dhara. Dr. Kane fixes the period of reign of Bhoja of Dhara. The Mitaksara and the views of Dharesvara are compared and discussed.
Dr. Kane begins the paper on kalivarjya by discussing the meaning of the terms yuga, and krta, treat, dvapara and kali (the four ages) and he reaches some conclusions, such as, it is doubtful whether the theory of the four ages was known to ancient Vedic literature. He asserts that the theory became a formidable weapon to writers on dharma when they had to explain away inconvenient texts. Practices allowed by Parasara are condemned by later writers as forbidden in the kali age. In many digests including the Smrticandrika, long extracts are given from Puranas and Saunaka which condemn certain practices as forbidden in the kali age (kalivarjyas). Dr. Kane then lists the several kalivarjyas mentioned in the Aditya Purana and verses on Kalivarjya collected from the Smrticandrika.
The interesting paper, 'Tilaka Mark' sheds light on some aspects of the practice of applying tilaka. Dr. Kane takes up literary references the Natyasastra of Bharata, the Ramayana, the Kadambari of Bana, etc. to show that from at least the beginning of the Christian era women applied a mark or talaka on their forehead. He also states that there are not indication that it was a necessity then. It is likely that the necessity emerged later with the practice of applying a pundra mark on the forehead by men.
In 'The Parijata and the Madana-Parijata', Dr. Kane's efforts are to convince scholars that the Parijata, often quoted by the Kalpataru and the Ratnakaras of Candesvara, is different from the Madana-Parijata. He takes up the task by considering passages where (i) certain remarks are attributed to the Parijata which are not found in the Madana-Parijata; (ii) the explanation of the Parijata differs from that of the Madana-Parijata; and (iii) certain texts or views are stated as not mentioned in the Parijata even while they are found in the Madana-Parijata. Dr. Kane also points out that the dates of the two works clarify the issue.
Dr. Kane begins 'Purana-Dharma' by arguing that centuries before the Christian era, there was a single work called Itihasa-Purana or there were two works, Itihasa and Purana. That work or works are now lost and the extant Puranas may be only recasts. Dr. Kane then proceeds to discuss some features of the Puranas that, in a sense, are distinct from the Vedic features. The Puranas speak highly of the Vedas, utilize Vedic legends and prescribe Vedic mantras for religious rites and ceremonies but also introduce changes in rites and usages of the people. The key-note is how great results could be secured with little effort. Thus, Dr. Kane notes, they emphasise danas, pilgrimages to and baths in sacred places, vratas, bhakti and namasmarana, and the performance of sraddha.
The paper titled 'The Arthasastra of Kautilya' studies the author and his work with specific reference to the controversies regarding the work's authorship and authenticity.
Dr. Kane notes that there is no weighty evidence why Kautilya cannot be regarded as the author of Arthasastra. In the sphere of administration of justice, Kautilya is much in advance of the dharmasutras of Gautama, Apastamba and Baudhyana and so is much later than these. Yajnavalkya is much later than Kautilya for a similar reason. Kautiliya, says Dr. Kane, is much older than the extant Manusmrti. Regarding the date of the Kautiliya, it is stated that no evidence has been brought forward to suggest a date later than 300 BC.
The lengthy discussion lilted 'King Bhoja and his Works on Dharmasastra and Astrology' is on works ascribed to Bhojadeva that are concerned with astrological matters in relation to Dharmasastra. Dr. Kane takes up the Bhimaparakrama, the earliest work of this type, the Bhujabalanibandha, the Rajamartanda, the Vyavaharasamuccaya (which, he says, could be a work of Bhoja) among others.
Professor Kane details significant aspects of Bhoja's work including the unfavourable lagans, yogas like amrtasiddhi, dagdha yoga and rules about the tithes. He also observes that a number of verses are repeated by two or more texts. Exactly opposite views appear at some places in the Bhujabala and the Rajamartanda. There are also contradictions between quotations from Rajamartanda in digests and the manuscript of Rajamartanda. Dr. Kane is of the view that the Rajamartanda and the Brhadrajamartanda are distinct works, with the former being more popular than the latter.
In his brief 'Mahabharata Citations in the Sabara-Bhasya'. Dr. Kane states that a verse from Sabara's remarks on Jaimini is taken from the Adiparva of the Mahabharata which is in the Anukramaniparva and differs from Sabara's quotation only as to the first pada. This point will have an important bearing on the antiquity and authenticity of the Anukarmaniparva. Some interesting observations are also made on the sutras of Jaimini.
In Utpala and the Arthasastra of Kautilya', Dr. Kane uses a work on astrology Utpala's Vivrtti on the Yogayatra of Varahamihira to reveal some new aspects related to the Arthasastra.
An interesting paper lists some passages of the Matsya Purana and Kautilya's Arthasastra where the words used are strikingly similar. Dr. Kane concludes that the Matsya is based on the Arthasastra and on no other work, and it cannot be assigned to a period later than the sixth century AD.
The paper on issues relating to naming of a child or a person adds to the matter presented by Dr. Kane in his History of Dharmasastra. Dr. Kane observes that elaborate rules are given in the Grhyasutras and proposes to compare these rules with the practices deducible from the Vedic literature to discuss this practice since the ancient times in India.
Dr. Kane points out that in the Rgveda, the same person had four names though usually a person is referred to in Vedic literature by two names. The Grhyasutras refer to odd and even syllables in names and names with a visarga at the end for sons. Dr. Kane notes that it appears that the naksatra name was a secret name in ancient times though gradually such names ceased to be so. There are also examples of Buddhist names derived from naksatras. Dr Mane also takes up various other aspects for study, such as giving names of deities and the matronymic style.
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