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The Minor Law Books (SBE33), by Julius Jolly, [1889], at


1. 1 Trade or other occupations should not be carried on by prudent men jointly with incompetent or lazy persons, or with such as are afflicted by an illness, ill-fated, or destitute.

2. A man should carry on business jointly with persons of noble parentage, clever, active, intelligent, familiar with coins, skilled in revenue and expenditure, honest, and enterprising.

3. 3 As an equal, smaller, or larger share (of the

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joint stock) has been contributed by a partner, in the same proportion shall he defray charges, perform labour, and obtain profit.

4. 4 Of those who lend (jointly) gold, grain, liquids and condiments, or the like, the gain shall be equal to their respective shares (of the joint expenditure), whether equal, more, or less.

5. 5 Whatever property one partner may give (or lend), authorized by many, or whatever contract he may cause to be executed, all that is (considered as having been) done by all.

6. They are themselves pronounced to be arbitrators and witnesses for one another in doubtful cases, and when a fraudulent act has been discovered, unless a (previous) feud should exist between them.

7. When any one among them is found out to have practised deceit in a purchase or sale, he must be cleared by an oath (or ordeal); such is the rule in all disputes (of this sort).

8. 8 When a loss or diminution has occurred through fate or the king, it is ordained that it should be borne by all (partners) in proportion to their respective shares.

9. 9 When (a single partner acting) without the assent (of the other partners) or against their express instructions injures (their joint property)

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through his negligence, he must by himself give a compensation to all his partners.

10. 10 That (partner), on the other hand, who by his own efforts preserves (the common stock) from a danger apprehended through fate or the king, shall be allowed a tenth part of it (as a reward), the remainder being distributed among the other (partners), according to their shares (in the stock).

11. 11 Should any such partner in trade happen to die through want of proper care, his goods must be shown (and delivered) to officers appointed by the king.

12. And when any one comes forward claiming that man's property as heir (to the deceased partner), he shall prove his right to it by (the evidence of) other men, and then let him take it.

13. 13 The king shall take a sixth, a ninth, and a twelfth part respectively from the property of a Sûdra, Vaisya, and Kshatriya; and a twentieth from the property of a Brahman.

14. But after the lapse of three years, if no owner should come forward by any means, the king shall take that property; the wealth of a Brahman he shall bestow on (other) Brahmans.

15. 15 So among (several) persons jointly performing a ceremony, if any one should meet with an accident, his (part of) the ceremony shall be performed by a kinsman of his, or by all his associates (in work).

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16. 16 They (the officiating priests) are pronounced to be threefold; coming (of their own accord), hereditary in the family, and appointed by (the sacrificer) himself; their business should be performed by them accordingly.

17. 17 To a kinsman, relative, or friend one may lend money with a pledge (only); a loan to others must be guaranteed by a surety, or there must be a written contract or witnesses.

18. 18 Gold or silver may be lent according to one's own choice; liquids and condiments, and grain, for a specified period only; it is by local custom that both the loan and its recovery should be regulated.

19. That, however, which has been lent by several persons in common, must be recovered by them jointly; any (such lender) who fails to demand (the loan together with his partners) shall forfeit interest.

20. 20 The law regarding loans has-been declared before, (therefore) it is referred to in an abridged form only in the present chapter. Listen to the legal rules regarding cultivators of the soil and other (associates in work), which are declared as follows.

21. Tillage should be undertaken by a sensible

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man jointly with those who are his equals in point of cattle, workmen, seeds, and the like, as well as implements of husbandry.

22. They should refrain anxiously from cultivating an enclosed pasture-ground, land adjacent to a town, or to the king's highway, barren soil, and ground infested by mice.

23. That man will enjoy produce who sows fertile land, which has many holes and is wet, capable of irrigation, surrounded by fields on all sides, and cultivated in due season.

24. A sensible cultivator must not admit cattle which is lean, very old, tiny, diseased, apt to run away, blind of one eye, or lame.

25. When by the deficiency of one (partner) as to cattle or seeds a loss happens in (the produce of) the field, it must be made good by him to all the husbandmen.

26. This primeval set of rules has been declared for cultivators of the soil.

27. 27 One able to work up gold, silver, thread, wood, stone, or leather, and acquainted with the articles to be manufactured (with such materials), is called Silpin (an artizan or artist) by the wise.

28. When goldsmiths or other (artists) practise their art jointly, they shall share the profits in due proportion, corresponding to the nature of their work.

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29. 29 The headman among a number of workmen jointly building a house or temple, or digging a pool or making articles of leather, is entitled to a double share (of the remuneration).

30. 30 The same rule has been declared by virtuous men for musicians; he who knows how to beat the time shall take a share and a half, but the singers shall take equal shares.

31. 31 When anything has been brought from a hostile country by freebooters, with the permission of their lord, they shall give a sixth part to the king and share (the remainder) in due proportion.

32. Four shares shall be awarded to their chief; he who is (specially) valiant shall receive three shares; one (particularly) able shall take two; and the remaining associates shall share alike.


336:1 XIV, 1, 2. Ratn. p. 111; Col. Dig. II, 3, 2; Vîram. pp. 383, 384.

336:3 Ratn. p. 112; Col. Dig. II, 3, 5.

337:4 Ratn. p. 123; Col. Dig. II, 3, 45.

337:5 5-7. Ratn. pp. 123, 113; Col. Dig. II, 3, 45, 9, 10; May. p. 121; Vîram. p. 385.

337:8 Ratn. p. 113; Col. Dig. II, 3, 11. 'A loss,' destruction of the principal; 'diminution,' loss of profits. Ratn.

337:9 Ratn. p. 113; Col. Dig. II, 3, 12; Viv. p. 61; Vîram. p. 385.

338:10 Ratn. p. 114; Col. Dig. II, 3, 15; Viv. p. 61; Vîram. p. 386.

338:11 11, 12. Ratn. p. 116; Col. Dig. II, 3, 21; Viv. p. 63.

338:13 13, 14. Ratn. p. 116; Col. Dig. II, 3, 22; Viv. p. 64.

338:15 Ratn. p. 117; Col. Dig. II, 3, 29; Viv. p. 65. 'A ceremony,' such as a sacrifice.

339:16 Ratn. p. 120; Col. Dig. II, 3, 44. The analogous text of Nârada shows that officiating priests are the persons intended by this rule.

339:17 17-26. Ratn. pp. 123, 124; Col. Dig. II, 3, 47-51.

339:18 In a loan of gold, a definite period for its return need not he specified; but for liquids, &c. the stipulation of a fixed term is necessary. Ratn.

339:20 'Declared before,' i.e. in Chapter XI. All the rules declared in that chapter are equally applicable to loans made by an association.

340:27 27, 28. Ratn. p. 124; Col. Dig. II, 3, 52; Viv. p. 70; Vîram. p. 396. Some compilations exhibit the readings kupya, 'base metals,' for rûpya, 'silver;' pattra, 'leaves,' for sûtra, 'thread;' tattatkalâbhigñah, 'acquainted with the minute particles of these materials,' for ka phalâbhigñah, 'and acquainted with the articles to be manufactured.'

341:29 Ratn. p. 125; Col. Dig. II, 3, 54; May. p. 121; Viv. p. 70; Vîram. p. 390. The last two works read vâpi for vâpî, and under this reading the clause 'or digging a pool ' would have to be omitted. The Mayûkha reads dhârmika, 'sacred articles,' for kârmika, 'articles made of leather.'

341:30 Ratn. p. 125; Col. Dig. II, 3, 55; Viv. p. 71; Vîram. p. 391; May. p. 121.

341:31 31, 32. Ratn. p. 125; Col. Dig. II, 3, 56; Viv. p. 71; Vîram. p. 391. 'Their chief,' i.e. one who exerts mind and body. Ratn., Viv.

Next: XV. Resumption of Gifts