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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

Thus we see Gautama saying: ‘a father who had no male issue may appoint his daughter " 21 and ‘some declare that (a daughter becomes) an appointed daughter solely by the intention (of the father).’ In either of these cases a daughter belonged to the family of her father, and it was, perhaps, out of this fear that the appointed daughter, the Putrika, was to be avoided for marriage and the condition of being brotherless came to be regarded as a disqualification for the marriage of a girl: and ‘through fear of that (a man) should not marry a girl who has no brothers’. 22

In the absenc6 of any issue or even an appointed daughter, the wife could inherit the property of her deceased husband, and Gautama gives to the wife the right of inheritance and names her as one of the successors to the property of the deceased. He enjoins‘ Sapindas, Sagotras, those connected by descent from the same Rishi (Vaidika Gotra) and the wife shall share (the estate) of a person deceased without (male) issue (or an appointed daughter) ‘. 23

But women could have separate property of their own, which came to be designated in later Smriti digests as Stridhana, and such property was inherited by the unmarried daughters, if there, were any, at the time of her death and in the absence of any such, it went to the poor married daughters. The next lawgiver of considerable importance and antiquity is Baudhayana, who belonged to the Black Yajur - Vedic school.

According to the researches of Dr. A. Burnell and his classification of the literature of this school, the Dharma-Sutra of Baudhayana follows his Grhya-Sutra and consists of four Prasnas. The internal evidence obtained from the Sutras them selves, shows that the Dharma-Sutra was written to supplement the Grhya; for the Dharma-Sutra in two passages, 24 refer to the directions given in the Grhya-Sutras.

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Women In The Sacred Laws
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