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


1. 1 (By false evidence concerning land, a witness kills everything; beware, then, of giving false evidence concerning land.) In the case of (false evidence concerning) water, the consequence is said to be the same as for land, and so it is in the case of carnal connexion with a female, as well as (in the

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case of false evidence) concerning gems produced in water, and everything consisting of stone.

2. In the case of honey or clarified butter (the consequence) is the same as (when false evidence has been given) with regard to small cattle. He incurs the same guilt as in the case of a horse (by giving false evidence) regarding a vehicle. The case of silver, clothes, grain, or the Veda is equal to the case of a cow.

3. Having considered all these evil consequences attending a false declaration, (a witness) must declare openly everything as (he has) heard or seen (it).

4. 4 Kubera, Âditya, Varuna, Sakra (Indra), the son of Vivasvant (Yama), and the (other) guardian deities of the world are constantly looking on with divine eyes.

5. 5 Let (the judge) ask a Brahman for his testimony by saying, 'Speak;' a Kshatriya by saying, 'Speak the truth;' a Vaisya, by referring to his kine, grain, and gold; but a Sûdra (by conjuring him) by all possible wicked deeds.

6. Whatever places (of torment) are assigned (in a future state) to the murderers of Brahmans, or to the slayers of women and children, and to him who betrays a friend, or shows ingratitude, those very places shall be thy home (after death) if thou speakest falsely.

7. All meritorious deeds which thou, O good man, hast done since thy birth, would go to the dogs, if thou shouldst speak falsely.

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8. Although, O virtuous man, thou thinkest of thyself, 'I am alone,' yet that says who sees the evil and the good ever resides in thy heart.

9. If thou art not at variance with the god Yama, the son of Vivasvant, who resides in thy heart, thou needest not go to the Ganges or to (the country of) the Kurus.

10 10. Perjured witnesses, as well as those who rob others of their property, and wicked kings, shall have to reside (hereafter) in a very dreadful hell for the time of a kalpa.

11. 11 When (a calamity such as) an illness, or fire, or the death of a relative, happens to a witness within seven days after his evidence has been taken, he shall be made to pay the debt and a fine.

12. 12 Learned Brahmans and other such persons (are incompetent witnesses) under a text of law; thieves and the like persons, on account of their notorious perversity; (the deposition of the witnesses is worthless) owing to mutual contradiction when the witnesses make mutually conflicting statements at the trial of a cause.

13. 'One who gives evidence of his own accord' is a witness who comes to make a deposition of his own accord, without being appointed (a witness). Such a man is termed a spy in the law-books, and he is not worthy to become a witness.

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14. 'One rendered incompetent by intervening decease' is a witness (who comes) after the death of the claimant, unless he should have been instructed (by the claimant) on his deathbed.


244:1 V, 1-3. Vîram. p. 171. See Nârada I, 17, 209 (above, p. 92), the text immediately preceding these texts in the Vîramitrodaya. 1, 3 = Manu VIII, 100, 101. All these texts, up to 10, form part of the exhortation to be addressed to the witnesses by the judge. In 2, I have substituted tathâsvavat, the reading of the Todarânanda, for tathâpnuyât.

245:4 Smritik. kuberâdityavarunasakravaivasvatâdayah | pasyanti lokapâlâs ka nityam divyena kakshushâ ||

245:5 5-9. Vy. K. Identical with Manu VIII, 88-92.

246:10 Smritik. atîvanarake kalpam vaseyuhtasâkshinah | paravittaharâ ye ka râgânas kâpyadhârmikâh || A kalpa is a fabulous period of time, the duration of which is reckoned in various ways.

246:11 Tod. Identical with Manu VIII, 108.

246:12 12-14. Vîram. p. 151. 12, 13 a, and 14 occur in the Minor Nârada as well (p. 34), where they come immediately after a text which is identical with Nârada I, 12, 157 (above, p. 82).

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