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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

THE DHARMA SUTRAS

We have only to read the Buddhist and Jain literature referring to the life-time of these, teachers to be convinced of the correctness of this conclusion, which receives a remarkable confirmation also from the Brahmanical literature.

It seems as though the air was surcharged with asceticism. It is, therefore, no wonder if we find the laws framed according to the ethical standard of the time But still the earlier law-givers, in spite of the small changes to check the freedom of a woman, were in substantial agreement with the old Vedic order. 

Apastamba has the first to rebel against the old system. It has also to be noted in this connection that these law-books have been inundated with the additions of later writers: the sanction of child marriage, found all the law-codes, is clearly a later interpolation, as it a controverts the basic principle of the marriage ritual of the Grhya-Sutras written about the same time.

The rule-declaring women unfit for independence goes against the system of giving the place of a son to a Putrika. This system later became obsolete, probably at a period when independence was actually denied to women. Hence it can be asserted, in conclusion, that with the earliest set of law-givers, and specially with the compilation of the Dharma-Sutra of Vasishtha, many of the laws giving freedom to women were getting extinct, and what remained thereafter was the, ascetic rigidity founder, Manu and Yajnavalkya.

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Women In The Sacred Laws
About The Dharma Sutras
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