The Ratnavali or the Jewel Neck- lace' is a drama of the Natika type by Sriharsa. The theme is the marriage, through various obstacles and at the clever intervention of the minister Yaugandharayana, of king Udayana and Ratnavali, daughter of the king of Ceylon.
A brief but sufficiently exhaustive commentary in Sanskrit has been writ- ten, as there was no suitable ancient commentary available on this play. Another feature of this edition is the introduction wherein all that has been known of the author and the play has been put together for ready reference and systematic study.
This edition of Sri Harsa-Deva's Ratnavali is prepared on the same lines as my edition of the Nagananda two years ago, with a view to supply the University student with a text-boo that will meet all his requirements. Care has also been taken to make the book useful to the general reader as well. A brief but sufficiently exhaustive new commentary in Sanskrit has been written, as there was no suitable ancient comm. Available on this play. Another feature of this edition is the Introduction wherein all that has been known of the author and the play has been put together for ready reference and systematic study. The figures of speech and the various technicalities of Sanskrit dramaturgy are not given (except in a few cases) in the Notes as they are not of much use to the junior University students. They are, however, pointed out in the commentary. I have used the editions of Messrs. V. S. Ghate, Joglekar, and the Nirn. And the available Calcutta editions, and I am beholden to the editors of all these. But my special thanks are due to Sastri Nigudkar whose edition was useful to me in writing out the comm., and Prof. Ray's excellent edition of the play from which I got many useful hints. Any suggestions for improvement & c., will gratefully welcomed.
We shall begin with a brief outline of the general structure and arrangement of the Sanskrit Drama without a knowledge of which the technical remarks on the construction of the present play here as well as those made in the Notes will not be intelligible to the general reader. Poetry in Sanskrit from its inherent nature as apart from its intrinsic merit is divided into two kinds what is capable of being seen or exhibited and what can only be heard or chanted. The drama falls under the first division Rupaka is the general term is Sanskrit for all dramatic compositions which also comprises a subordinate class called Uparapaka. The Rupaka which has Rasa or Sentiment for its substratum is divided into ten classes viz, of the Uparupakas or minor Dramas there are eighteen species the most important of which are Natikas such as Ratnavali Vaddhasalabhanjika Trotakas such as the Vikramorvasiya & c.
Having thus disposed into which the whole of the scenic art is capable of failing we turn to the principles of division among the themselves which is Threefold the plot of the play the hero and the sentiment these three are the essential constituents nay the very life blood of every drama tic piece. Each of these we shall succinctly deal with in its order.
Vastu is primarily of two kinds or principal and or accessory the principal is that which relates to the chief characters or the persons concerned with the essential interest of the piece and pervades the while arrangement. The accessory is that which appears in furtherance of the main topic and is concerned with characters other than the hero or the heroine this later is of two kinds viz, pataka dna prakari Pataka or banner is an episode by which the progress of the plot is illustrated furthered or hindered. It is of considerable length and sometimes extends tot eh very end of a play. The prakari is also an episodically incident of limited duration and minor importance one in which the principal characters take no part. Besides these two there are three other elements requisite for the development of the plot. These are or the seed or the drop and or the final issue. Bija is the circumstance leading to the ultimate end briefly stated which as the plot develops bears multifarious results and which is as it were the seed of the plot bindu is what cements a break in the plot caused by the introduction of some other attained the whole is finished. These five are technically called arthaprakritis.
The Vastu which is the thus divided into five classes may again be divided into three classed according to the source of its derivation. It may be borrowed from history or tradition or it may be fictitious or mixed, i.e. partly drawn from history and partly the creation of the poet’s famey. A notaka belongs to the first class a prakarana to the second.
As regards its developments a dramatic plot has five stages or conditions called Avasthas. Their are beginning or setting on foot of the enterprise, (2) qi effort, (3) prospect of success, (4) certain attainment through the removal of obstacles, and (5) obtainment of the desired object. While those five stages are in progress there must be some links to connect them with the principal and subordinate parts of the main action (the episodes and incidents). These are called the Samdhis or junctures. They are five in number, answering to the five Arthaprakritis, each of which they join with its corresponding stage, viz., (Protasis or the opening juncture) (Epitasis). in? (catastasis), ( Peripateia), and (Catastrophe), also called or aq*flf). Thus Mukhasamdhi is the combination of the Bija and Arambha, i.e., wherein the seed is sown, so to speak, with all its Rasas. In the Pratimukha there is the means (yapuz) to the chief end, as originally implied by the Bija in the Mukha which herein sprouts up. In the Garb/us there is attainment and non-attainment of the desired end, implying a further sprouting up of the original Bija. There are impediments, but the main plot gains ground under resistance. The Avamarshaeamdhi is that in which the seed attains a more luxuriant growth than in the Garbiza, being accompanied by Niyattpti of the end, but whose final result is postponed further off by fresh impediments of various sorts, as in the Stkuntala the King’s forgetting S’ak. after marriage owing to Durvãsas’ curse• The Nirvaha’pa or consummation is the harmonious combination of all the aforesaid parts in the final catastrophe.
The subject—matter, whether historical, fictitious, or mixed, is from its inherent nature capable of a twofold division. It is divided into (I) ‘—deserving to be suggested or implied only, as being of a dry and otherwise unfit character; and (2) —fit to be represented and heard as being highly sentimental and pleasing. The suggestions or implications are made in five ways— (1) For islslcambha see Notes, Act I. (2) Ck2Ii&S is the suggestion of some incident from behind the scenes (ThTZ4). (3) An is one wherein is suggested by the actors at the time of their departure the connexion between the Act finished and the one to be commenced, which otherwise would look disconnected, as the speech of Kamandaki and others at the end of the 3rd act of the Mal-amdh (4) consists in implanting the seed of the subject matter of an act in the previous act before it has drawn to its close so that the act following is a continuation of the one preeding e.g. the sixth act of the sak the germ of which is east at eh end of the fifth act. Malav II and Mal Mad II are after instances (5) for see notes act II.
The styles or mdes of action to be followed in a drama are four in number viz, of these the Kaisiki consists of music dancing and love sports assiting the development of sringara and is delightful by that and from the fascinating dresses worn by women. It has four angas viz, (1) or polite pleasantry (2) development of love (3) the distant indication of love and (4) convert action for the furtherance of love.
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