The Manusmriti is an ancient legal text among the many Dharmaśāstras of Hinduism. It was one of the first Sanskrit texts to have been translated into English in 1776, by Sir William Jones. The root of theoretical models within the text rely on at least two shastras that pre-date it: artha, and dharma.
About Manusmriti in brief
The Manusmriti is an ancient legal text among the many Dharmaśāstras of Hinduism. It was one of the first Sanskrit texts to have been translated into English in 1776, by Sir William Jones. The metrical text is in Sanskrit, and is variously dated to be from the 2nd century BCE to 3rd century CE. It presents itself as a discourse given by Manu and Bhrigu on dharma topics such as duties, rights, laws, conduct, virtues and others. The first 58 verses are attributed by the text to Manu, while the remaining more than 1,000 are attributed to his student Bh Rigu. The root of theoretical models within the text rely on at least two shastras that pre-date it: artha, and dharma. Its contents can be traced to Kalpasutras of the Vedic era, which led to the development of Smartasutras. The modern version of the text has been subdivided into twelve Adhyayas, but the original text had no such division. Most scholars consider the text a composite produced by many authors put together over a long period. The text’s fame spread outside Bharat, long before the colonial era. The medieval era Buddhistic law of Myanmar and Thailand are also ascribed to ManU, and the text influenced past Hindu kingdoms in Cambodia and Indonesia. These verses state what the text considers the proper and just sources of Hindu law. The Dharmasya Yonih has twenty-four verses, and one verse and one transition follows.
The Shlokas is divided into four, each of different length in metric in each of each of the subsections: composed in each metric section. The text can be broadly divided into Shlaiva puranas, Vaishnava puranas and Shaivism puranas. The original text has 100,000 verses and 1,080 chapters, but the modern version has no such divisions. The earliest discovered, most translated and presumed authentic version since the 18th century has been the \”Kolkata manuscript with Kulluka Bhatta commentary\”. Modern scholarship states this presumed authenticity is false. The various manuscripts of Manus mriti discovered in India are inconsistent with each other, and within themselves, raising concerns of its authenticity, insertions and interpolations made into the text in later times. Most of these ancient texts are now lost, and only four of have survived: the law codes of Apastamba, Gautama, Baudhayana and Vasishtha. The ancient text was not a new document, it drew on other texts, and it reflects “a crystallization of an accumulated knowledge’ in ancient India. It is also called the Mānava-DharmaŚāstra or Laws of Manu. It may date to the period of around 1250 BCE and 1000 BCE respectively, which from later linguistic developments is untenable due to the language.