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Women In The Sacred Laws
Kulapati's Preface The Author
Foreword Prologue
The Dharma Sutras Contemporary Evidence
The Manu - Samhita The Later Law-Books
Digest On Hindu Law Espirit Des Lois
Major Sections

THE DHARMA SUTRAS

Apastamba allows only legitimate sons to inherit their father’s estate and he explicitly forbids the sale and gift of children. 76 Baudhayana has no scruple in prescribing the custom of Niyoga for childless widows, in order that they may get sons for offering the funeral oblations for the spirits of their dead husbands. In fact it was considered as a religious duty. Apastamba protests against this time ‘honoured custom. Baudhayana, as well as his predecessor Gautama, permits the Paisacha marriage, which Apastamba does not.

The evidence of more refined and conservative opinions and the attempt to controvert the doctrines of Baudhayana show that Apastamba is later than Baudhayana, and they reflect the corresponding change in society and view of life Mahadeva, the commentator on the Dharma Sutra of Apastamba, places Bharadvaja between them, and it is probable that the distance of time between these authors was filled by a set of law givers who con tented themselves with explaining the works of their predecessors.

These works are lost to us, but some of their views have been referred to by Apastamba and Baudhayana in the course of their treatises.Apastamba date has been considered to be not later than the third century B.C. 77 Apastamba begins with initiation, in the course of which he forbids intercaste marriage, which implies the prior existence of such a system. He prescribes initiation for all the castes, except the Sutras, and forbids marriage with those who have not been initiated. 78 ‘ Inter course, eating and inter marriage with them should be avoided ‘.79

As in home life marriage formed the beginning and centre, so in social life initiation formed the second birth of a man and it was given pre-eminence over even the natural birth; and hence a man who was allowed to be initiated came to be termed ‘dvija’, ‘one who has two births’. a name which came, in later times, to be applied exclusively to the Brahmins.

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Women In The Sacred Laws
About The Dharma Sutras
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