Sacred Texts  Hinduism  Index  Previous 

p. 334



1. We will explain the rule for the adoption of a son. 1

2. Man, formed of virile seed and uterine blood, proceeds from his mother and father (as an effect) from its cause. 2

3. (Therefore) the father and the mother have power to give, to abandon, or to sell their (son).

4. But let him not give nor receive (in adoption) an only son;

5. For he (must remain) to continue the line of the ancestors.

6. Let a woman neither give nor receive a son except with the permission of her husband.

7. He who is desirous of adopting (a son) procures two garments, two earrings, and a finger-ring; a spiritual guide who has studied the whole Veda; a layer of Kusa grass and fuel of Palâsa wood and so forth. 7

p. 335

8. Then he convenes his relations, informs the king (of his intention to adopt) in (their) presence, feeds the (invited) Brâhmanas in the assembly or in (his) dwelling, and makes them wish him 'an auspicious day,' 'hail,' (and) 'prosperity.' 8

9. Then he performs the ceremonies which begin with the drawing of the lines on the altar and end with the placing of the water-vessels, goes to the giver (of the child) and should address (this) request (to him), 'Give me (thy) son.'

10. The other answers, 'I give (him).'

11. He receives (the child with these words), 'I take thee for the fulfilment of (my) religious duties; I take thee to continue the line (of my ancestors).'

12. Then he adorns him with the (above-mentioned) two garments, the two earrings, and the finger-ring, performs the rites which begin with the placing of the (pieces of wood called) paridhis (fences round the altar) and end with the Agnimukha, and offers (a portion) of the cooked (food) in the fire. 12

13. Having recited the Puronuvâkyâ (verse), 'He who thinking of thee with a discerning mind,' &c., he offers an oblation, reciting the Yâgyâ (verse), 'To which performer of good deeds, thou, O Gâtavedas,' &c. 13

14. Then he offers (oblations, reciting) the Vyâhritis;--(the ceremonies) which begin the oblation to Agni Svishtakrit and end with the presentation 14

p. 336

of a cow as a fee (to the officiating priest are) known;--

15. And presents (to the spiritual guide) as a sacrificial fee those two dresses, those two earrings, and that finger-ring (with which he had adorned the child).

16. If after the performance of these (rites) a legitimate son of his own body is born (to the adopter, then the adopted son) receives a fourth (of the legitimate son's) share. Thus says Baudhâyana. 16


334:1 5. This chapter has been translated by Mr. Sutherland, Dattaka Mîmâmsâ V, 42, and Dattaka Kandrikâ II, 16, and by myself, journal Bengal Br. Roy. As. Soc., vol. XXXV, p.162.

334:2-6. Identical with Vasishtha XV, 1-5. The best MS. omits the particle tu, 'but,' in Sûtra 6, while others have it.

334:7-8. Vasishtha XV, 7. The translation of madhye by 'in their presence' rests on the authority of the Samskârakaustubha 47 b, 11, where it is explained madhye [a] iti bandhusamaksham. The other explanation 'in the middle (of his dwelling),' to which the interpolated text of the Dattaka Mîmâmsâ and Dattaka Kandrikrâ refers, is, however, also possible.

335:8 The ceremony alluded to is the so-called punyâhavâkanam.

335:12 The correct reading is pakvâg guhoti.

335:13 The two texts are found Taittirîya Samhitâ I, 4, 46, I.

335:14 Vasishtha XV, 7. The parenthetical phrase occurs frequently in the Dharma-sûtra;. see e.g. III, 4, 3.

336:16 Vasishtha XV, 9.