Sacred Texts  Hinduism  Index  Previous  Next 

p. 13


1. Now the duties of a king, are:

2. To protect his people,

[14. According to Nand., the use of the term sarva, 'all,' implies that Sûdras may also follow the occupations of a Vaisya, tillage and the rest, as ordained by Devala.

16. The term Guru, 'superior,' generally denotes the parents and the teacher, or Guru in the narrower sense of the term; see XXXI, 1, 2. It may also include all those who are one's elders or betters see XXXII, 1-3.

III. 2, 3. M. VII, 35, 144; Gaut. X, 7; XI, 9.--4, 5. M. VII, 69; Y. I, 320.--6. M. VII, 70; Y. I, 320; Âpast. II, 10, 25, 2.--{footnote p. 14} 7-10. M. VII, 115; Âpast. II, 10, 26, 4, 5.--11-15. M. VII, 116, 117--16-21. M. VII, 61, 62; Y. I, 321.--22-25. M. VII, 130-132; Y. I, 327; Âpast. II, 10, 26, 9; Gaut. X, 24, 25.--26. M. VII, 133; Âpast. II, 10, 26, 10.--28. M. VIII, 304; Y. I, 334; Gaut. XI, 11.--29, 30. M. VII, 128; VIII, 398; Y. II, 161; Gaut. X, 26.--31. M. VIII, 400; Y. II, 262.--32. M. VII, 138; Gaut. X, 31-33.--33. M. IX, 294; Y. I, 352-35. M. VII, 122, 184; Y. I, 331, 337.--36, 37. Y. I, 337.--38-41. M. VII, 158-161, 182, 183; Y. I, 344-347.--42. M. VII, 203; Y. I, 342-43. M. VII, 215.--44. M. VII, 88.--45. M. VII, 89; Y. I, 324; Âpast. II, 20, 26, 2, 3.--47. M. VII, 202.--50-52. M. VII, 50, 51.--55. M. VII, 62; VIII, 39--56-58. M. VIII, 37, 38; Y. II, 34; Gaut. X, 43, 44.--61. Gaut. X, 45.--62. Y. II, 35--63. M. VIII, 35.--64. M. VIII, 36.--65. M. VIII, 27, 28; Gaut. X, 48.--66, 67. M. VIII, 40; Y. II, 36; Âpast. II, 10, 26, 8; Gaut. X, 46, 47.--68. Gaut. X, 17.--70. M. VII, 78; Y. I, 312; Gaut. XI, 12.--71. M. VII, 54, 60; Y. I, 311.--72. M. VIII, 1; Y. II, 1.--73. M. VIII, 9; Y. II, 3; Gaut. XIII, 96.--74. M. VIII, 12-19; Y. II, 2; Âpast. II, 11, 29, 5.--75. Gaut. XI, 15.--76, 77. M. VII, 38.--79, 80. M. VIII 134; Y. I, 338; Âpast. II, 10, 25, 11; Gaut. X, 9, 10.--81. Âpast. II, 10, 26, 1.--81, 82. Y. I, 317-319.--84. M. VII, 82; Y. I, 314.--85. M. VII, 220.--87, 88. M. VII, 217, 218.--89. M. VII, 146.--91, 92. M. VII, 16; VIII, 126; Y. I, 367; Gaut. X, 8.--94. M. VIII, 335; Y. I, 357; Âpast. II, 11, 28, 13.--95. M. VII, 25.--96. M. VII, 32; Y. I. 333---97. M. VII, 33. Chapters III-XVIII contain the section on vyavahâra, 'jurisprudence.' (Nand.)]

p. 14

3. And to keep the four castes and the four orders[1] in the practice of their several duties.

4. Let the king fix his abode in a district containing open plains, fit for cattle, and abounding in grain;

5. And inhabited by many Vaisyas and Sûdras.

6. There let him reside in a stronghold (the strength of which consists) either in (its being surrounded by) a desert, or in (a throng of) armed

[3. 1 Of student, householder, hermit, and ascetic.

5. 'And there should be many virtuous men in it, as stated by Manu, VII, 69.' (Nand.)]

p. 15

men, or in fortifications (of stone, brick, or others), or in water (enclosing it on all sides), or in trees, or in mountains (sheltering it against a foreign invasion).

7. (While he resides) there, let him appoint chiefs (or governors) in every village;

8. Also, lords of every ten villages;

9. And lords of every hundred villages;

10. And lords of a whole district.

11. If any offence has been committed in a village, let the lord of that village suppress the evil (and give redress to those that have been wronged).

12. If he is unable to do so, let him announce it to the lord of ten villages;

13. If he too is unable, let him announce it to the lord of a hundred villages;

14. If he too is unable, let him announce it to the lord of the whole district.

15. The lord of the whole district must eradicate the evil to the best of his power.

16. Let the king appoint able officials for the working of his mines, for the levying of taxes and of the fares to be paid at ferries, and for his elephants and forests.

17. (Let him appoint) pious persons for performing acts of piety (such as bestowing gifts on the indigent, and the like);

18. Skilled men for financial business (such as examining gold and other precious metals);

[11. See 67 and Dr. Bühler's note on Âpast. II, 10, 26, 8.

16. The term nâgavana, which has been translated as a Dvandva compound, denoting elephants and forests, may also be taken to mean 'forests in which there are elephants;' or nâga may mean 'situated in the mountains' or I a mountain fort.' (Nand.)

18. Or, 'he must appoint men skilled in logic as his advisers in knotty points of argument.' (Nand.)]

p. 16

19. Brave men for fighting;

20. Stern men for acts of rigour (such as beating and killing);

21. Eunuchs for his wives (as their guardians).

22. He must take from his subjects as taxes a sixth part every year of the grain;

23. And (a sixth part) of all (other) seeds;

24. Two in the hundred, of cattle, gold, and clothes;

25. A sixth part of flesh, honey, clarified butter, herbs, perfumes, flowers, roots, fruits, liquids and condiments, wood, leaves (of the Palmyra, tree and others), skins, earthen pots, stone vessels, and anything made of split bamboo.

26. Let him not levy any tax upon Brâhmanas.

27. For they pay taxes to him in the shape of their pious acts.

28. A sixth part both of the virtuous deeds and of the iniquitous acts committed by his subjects goes to the king.

29. Let him take a tenth part of (the price of) marketable commodities (sold) in his own country;

30. And a twentieth part of (the price of) goods (sold) in another country.

31. Any (seller or buyer) who (fraudulently) avoids a toll-house (situated on his road), shall lose all his goods.

[23. This rule relates to Syâmâka grain and other sorts of grain produced in the rainy season. (Nand.)

25. 'Haradatta says that "a sixth part" means "a sixtieth part." But this is wrong, as shown by M. VII, 131.' (Nand.) Haradatta's false interpretation was most likely called forth by Gaut. X, 2 7.]

p. 17

32. Artizans (such as blacksmiths), manual labourers (such as carpenters), and Sûdras shall do work for the king for a day in each month.

33. The monarch, his council, his fortress, his treasure, his army, his realm, and his ally are the seven constituent elements of a state.

34. (The king) must punish those who try to subvert any one among them.

35. He must explore, by means of spies, both the state of his own kingdom and of his foe's.

36. Let him show honour to the righteous;

37. And let him punish the unrighteous.

38. Towards his (neighbour and natural) enemy, his ally (or the power next beyond his enemy), a neutral power (situated beyond the latter), and a power situated between (his natural enemy and an aggressive power): let him adopt (alternately), as the occasion and the time require, (the four modes of obtaining success, viz.) negotiation, division, presents, and force of arms.

39. Let him have resort, as the time demands, to (the six measures of a military monarch, viz.) making alliance and waging war, marching to battle and sitting encamped, seeking the protection (of a more powerful king) and distributing his forces.

[32. According to Nand., the particle ka, 'and,' implies that servile persons, who get their substance from their employers, are also implied. See Manu VII, 138.

35. The particle ka, according to Nand., is used in order to include the kingdoms of an ally and of a neutral prince.

38. 1 The term madhyama has been rendered according to Nand.'s and Kullûkâ's (on M. VII, 156) interpretation of it. Kullâka, however, adds, as a further characteristic, that it denotes a prince, who is equal in strength to one foe, but no match for two when allied.]

p. 18

40. Let him set out on an expedition in the months of Kaitra or Mârgasîrsha;

41. Or when some calamity has befallen his foe.

42. Having conquered the country of his foe, let him not abolish (or disregard) the laws of that country.

43. And when he has been attacked by his foe, let him protect his own realm to the best of his power.

44. There is no higher duty for men of the military caste, than to risk their life in battle.

45. Those who have been killed in protecting a cow, or a Brâhmana, or a king, or a friend, or their own property, or their own wedded wife, or their own life, go to heaven.

46. Likewise, those (who have been killed) in trying to prevent mixture of castes (caused by adulterous connections).

47. A king having conquered the capital of his foe, should invest there a prince of the royal race of that country with the royal dignity.

48. Let him not extirpate the royal race

49. Unless the royal race bc of ignoble descent.

50. He must not take delight in hunting, dice, women, and drinking;

51. Nor in defamation and battery.

52. And let him not injure his own property (by bootless expenses).

53. He must not demolish (whether in his own town, or in the town of his foe conquered by him,

[40. The particle vâ indicates, according to Nand., that he may also set out in the month Phâlguna.]

p. 19

or in a fort) doors which had been built there before his time (by a former king).

54. He must not bestow largesses upon unworthy persons (such as dancers, eulogists, bards, and the like).

55. Of mines let him take the whole produce.

56. Of a treasure-trove he must give one half to the Brâhmanas;

57. He may deposit the other half in his own treasury.

58. A Brâhmana who has found a treasure may keep it entire.

59. A Kshatriya (who has found a treasure) must give one fourth of it to the king, another fourth to the Brâhmanas, and keep half of it to himself

60. A Vaisya (who has found a treasure) must give a fourth part of it to the king, one half to the Brâhmanas, and keep the (remaining fourth) part to himself.

61. A Sûdra who has found a treasure must divide it into twelve parts, and give five parts to the king, five parts to the Brâhmanas, and keep two parts to himself.

62. Let the king compel him who (having found a treasure) does not announce it (to the king) and is found out afterwards, to give up the whole.

63. Of a treasure anciently hidden by themselves let (members of) all castes, excepting Brâhmanas, give a twelfth part to the king.

64. The man who falsely claims property hidden by another to have been hidden by himself, shall be

[63. This rule refers to a treasure, which has been found by some one and announced to the king. -The original owner is bound to prove his ownership. (Nand.) See "M. VIII, 35.]

p. 20

condemned to pay a fine equal in amount to the property falsely claimed by him.

65. The king must protect the property of minors, of (blind, lame or other) helpless persons (who have no guide), and of women (without a guardian).

66. Having recovered goods stolen by thieves, let him restore them entire to their owners, to whatever caste they may belong.

67. If he has been unable to recover them, he must pay (their value) out of his own treasury.

68. Let him appease the onsets of fate by ceremonies averting evil omens and propitiatory ceremonies;

69. And the onsets of his foe (let him repel) by force of arms.

70. Let him appoint as Purohita (domestic priest) a man conversant with the Vedas, Epics, the Institutes of Sacred Law, and (the science of) what is useful in life, of a good family, not deficient in limb, and persistent in the practice of austerities.

71. And (let him appoint) ministers (to help and advise him) in all his affairs, who are pure, free from covetousness, attentive, and able.

72. Let him try causes himself, accompanied by well-instructed Brâhmanas.

73. Or let him entrust a Brâhmana, with the judicial business.

74. Let the king appoint as judges men of good

[70. 'The science of what is useful in life' comprises the fine arts, except music, and all technical knowledge.

74. According to Nand., the particle ka indicates that the judges should be well acquainted, likewise, with the sacred revelation, {footnote p. 21} and intent upon performing their daily study of the Veda, as ordained by Yâgñavalkya, II, 2.]

p. 21

families, for whom the ceremonies (of initiation and so forth) have been performed, and who are eager in keeping religious vows, impartial towards friend and foe, and not likely to be corrupted by litigants either by (ministering to their) lustful desires or by (stimulating them to) wrath or by (exciting their) avarice or by other (such practices).

75. Let the king in all matters listen to (the advice of) his astrologers.

76. Let him constantly show reverence to the gods and to the Brâhmanas.

77. Let him honour the aged;

78. And let him offer sacrifices;

79. And he must not suffer any Brâhmana in his realm to perish with want;

80. Nor any other man leading a pious life.

81. Let him bestow landed property upon Brâhmanas.

82. To those upon whom he has bestowed (land) he must give a document, destined for the information of a future ruler, which must be written upon a piece of (cotton) cloth, or a copper-plate, and must contain the names of his (three) immediate ancestors, a declaration of the extent of the land, and an imprecation against him who should appropriate the

[75. According to Nand., the particle ka indicates that the king's ministers should also consult the astrologers.

76. 'The particle ka is used here in order to imply that the king should bestow presents upon the Brâhmanas, as Ordained by Manu, VII, 79.' (Nand.) See Introduction.

82. The repeated use of the particle ka in this Sûtra signifies that the document in question should also contain the name of the {footnote p. 22} donor, the date of the donation, and the words, written in the donor's own hand, 'What has been written above, by that is my own will declared.' The term dânakkhedopavarnanam, 'containing a declaration of the punishment awaiting the robber of a grant,' may also mean, 'indicating the boundaries (such as fields and the like) of the grant.' The seal must contain the figure of a flamingo, boar, or other animal. (Nand.) Numerous grants on copper-plates, exactly corresponding to the above description, have been actually found in divers parts of India. See, particularly, Dr. Burnell's Elements of South Indian Palaeography.]

p. 22

donation to himself, and should be signed with his own seal.

83. Let him not appropriate to himself landed property bestowed (upon Brâhmanas) by other (rulers).

84. Let him present the Brâhmanas with gifts of every kind.

85. Let him be on his guard, whatever he may be about.

86. Let him be splendid (in apparel and ornaments).

87. Let him be conversant with incantations dispelling the effects of poison and sickness.

88. Let him not test any aliments, that have not been tried before (by his attendants, by certain experiments).

89. Let him smile before he speaks to any one.

90. Let him not frown even upon (criminals) doomed to capital punishment.

91. Let him inflict punishments, corresponding to the nature of their offences, upon evil-doers.

[83. According to Nand., the particle ka is used in order to include in this prohibition a grant made by himself.

86. Nand. proposes a second interpretation of the term sudarsana besides the one given above, 'he shall often show himself before those desirous of seeing him.' {footnote p. 23} IV. 1-14. M. VIII, 132-138; Y. I, 361-365.]

p. 23

92. Let him inflict punishments according to justice (either personally or through his attendants).

93. Let him pardon no one for having offended twice.

94. He who deviates from his duty must certainly not be left unpunished by the king.

95. Where punishment with a black hue and a red eye advances with irresistible might, the king deciding causes justly, there the people will prosper.

96. Let a king in his own domain inflict punishments according to justice, chastise foreign foes with rigour, behave without duplicity to his affectionate friends, and with lenity to Brâhmanas.

97. Of a king thus disposed, even though he subsist by gleaning, the fame is far spread in the world, like a drop of oil in the water.

98. That king who is pleased when his subjects are joyful, and grieved when they are in grief, will obtain fame in this world, and will be raised to a high station in heaven after his death.

Next: IV.