Bhartṛhari is a Sanskrit writer to whom are normally ascribed two influential Sanskrit texts: . Bhartrihari’s poetry is aphoristic, and comments on the social mores of the time. The collected work is known as Śatakatraya “the three śatakas or. Bhartrihari []; Barbara Stoler Miller (tr.); Bhartrihari: poems. Columbia University Press (UNESCO representative works), , xxviii + pages [11jul . Bhartrihari: poems (UNESCO collection of representative works) [Bhartrhari] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Bhartṛhari (also romanized.

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While remaining rooted in the originals, the poems read well, and comprise a better poetry than many other renderings. To maintain such consistent quality over a comprehensive translation is no easy task. I excerpt about one-fourth of the verses below, since this edition is out of print and extremely hard to find. I also contrast many of Miller’s translations with others, including a more recent version bhwrtrihari Greg Bailey.

My personal assessment is that except for John Brough, most others lack poetic interest. The original text used for the translation is Bhartrihari’s shatakatrayamcritically edited by D. On the Authorship of Satakatrayi, and ch. Some Extant Versions of Bhartrhari’s Satakas. The critical work by Kosambi was based on manuscripts, which he collected by laboriously visiting a large bhartrlhari of institutions.

In this connection, he posits in his introduction the ‘Kosambi’s law of manuscripts’: Kosambi divides the manuscripts into a northern recension he gives details on five manuscripts, labelled A,B,E,H,Jand the southern recensions treated in detail for three manuscripts labelled W,X,Y. The southern manuscripts tend to organize the verses into finer thematic clusters paddhatis. Miller BSM includes versespoema “stanzas generally found in all versions” of the Bhartrihari canon, according to Kosambi.

Also includes in the introduction and as an epigraph, translation of several “suspect” verses – which are popular and interesting. I have in cited some of these alternate forms from the Masterworks of Asian literature in comparative perspectivea work edited by BSM, cited here as [masterworks].

Excerpts opening page For an instant he is a child, For an instant a youth delighting in passion, For an instant he is a pauper, For an instant fat in prosperity, Then, like an actor, With withered limbs of old age His body covered with wrinkles, A man at the end of his worldly existence Falls at the curtain to death. The legend of Bhartrihari the king from the introduction, p. The legend, recorded in the vikramacharitasays that a brahman priest who had obtained a fruit of immortality decided to give it to king Bhartrihari.

But the king relinquished it to his beloved queen, who gave it to her paramour, who in his turn gave it to one of his mistresses, and she presented it again to the king. After reflecting for a time on this chain of events, the king cursed all women and retired to the forest.

A single verse, a late addition to the Bhartrihari collection, is associated with this legend: She who is the constant object of my thought Is indifferent to me, Is desirous of another man, Who in his turn adores some other woman, But this bhatrihari takes delight in me.

The God of love! JM Kennedy gives it in this position, and renders it as: I believed that one woman was bhartrihafi to me, but she is now attracted by another man, and another man takes pleasure in her, while a second woman interests herself in me. Curses on them both, and on the god of love, and on the other woman, and on myself.

The maid my true heart loves would not my true love be; She seeks another man; another maid loves he; And me another maid her own true love would see: Oh, fie on her and him and Love and HER and me! There is frequent reference to the degradation of life in the service of a king and to the strained relation ship between king and counselor verses 13, 35, 58, 59, 60, 86, In an article On the authorship of the shatakatrayIfrom the Poemss.


This evidence is today thought to be suspect e. There are bhartrihari temples near Ujjainand also near Alwar in Rajasthan. He was born when the deathless sage bhzrtrihari vAruNI ejected sperm into his almsbowl, which conceived thereby. He lost his consort piMgala and remained inconsolable, until he met gorakShanAtha who resored not one but 25 piMgalas. This converted the king to ascetism, and he became one of the nine leaders of the sect.

He becomes a famous grammarian at Ujjain, marries four wives from the four castes – the kshatriya wife’s son becomes vikrama the king, while bhartr. This legend ends by mentioning this bhartr. It seems reasonable to assume bhartrihxri the earliest genuine stanzas pf the nItishataka date from the opening centuries of the christian era.

Such an early chronology would eliminate the vAkyapadiya bhartr. The verse na kaccic caNDakopAnAm refers to a priest being burned by the sacrificial fire, which is also mentioned as blackening the bhrtrihari of the rich puNye grAme vane vA ]. But now that I am favored with the salve [favoured with] of keener discernment, [keener discernment] My tranquil sight sees Brahman Ubiquitous in the world. Kale’s prose version [numbered as nitishataka 3]: An ignorant man can be pleased easily; a wise man can be persuaded the more easily; but even the God Brahma will not be able to win over a man puffed up with a grain of knowledge.

The fundamentally ignorant man is easily led, and the wise man still more easily ; but not even the Almighty Himself can exercise any influence on the smatterer. Lightly an ignorant boor is made content. And lightlier yet a sage ; But minds by half-way knowledge warped and bent, Not Brahma’s self their fury may assuage. But no man can alter The thoughts of an obstinate fool. Arthur Ryder’s verse translation, titled “The stubborn fool”: A diamond you may draw From an alligator’s jaw; You may cross the raging ocean like a pool; A cobra you may wear Like a blossom in your hair; But you never can convince a stubborn fool.

Who can rival them? But nourisehed by the mouse’s flesh, He escaped by the same passage. Only chance confounds The rise powms fall of men. The hunter, the fisherman, and the cynic Are wanton enemies on earth.

Arthur Ryder’s verse translation, “Why? The deer, the fish, the good man hunger For grass, for water, for content; Yet hunter, fisher, scandalmonger Pursue each harmless innocent.


Women’s eyes verse 35 online at http: The rules of service are a mystery Inscrutable even to the masters of wisdom [if you keep quiet, you are dumb if you’re byartrihari, you are pretentious if you are distant, you are arrogant if you are intimate, you are presumptuous if you are patient, you are not manly if you are impetuous, you are ill-bred] verse 39 A bald-headed man, his pate Pained by the rays of the sun, Desiring a shady spot, Went by fate to the foot Of a wood-apple tree.

Alas, there his head Was smashed by a large Falling fruit. Verily, Where goes a man deserted by fortune, There do adversities follow him. An old man bald as a copper pot, Because one noon his head grew hot. Crawled to a spreading bilva-tree To seek the shade.


By Fate’s decree A fruit just then came tumbling down. And cracked the old man’s brittle crown With loud explosion – which was worse. Ill dogs us everywhere when Fate ‘s averse. A bald-headed man, his head scorched by the sun’s rays, Hastening to a shady spot, Stood at the foot of a palm tree. And there, by a large falling fruit His head was split open with a crack. Geneerally, where the victim of fate goes There disasters follow him.


A miser, who neither gives nor enjoys, Lives in dread of the third. Generosity, enjoyment, loss Are three ways wealth can go. Whoever neither gives nor consumes Goes the third way. Any man who is wealthy is of good family, He is wise, learned, a connoisseur. He alone is eloquent and he is handsome. All qualities depend on gold. In the company of learned men, The silence of fools Serves to adorn them shringAra shataka verse 77 Discrimination’s lucid light Continues to shine for learned men Only while it is not eclipsed By the tremulous lashes of women’s eyes.

With the trembling eyes of frightened does, Girls can yoke the minds of men. Nothing enthralls us like an ample-hipped woman, Nothing else causes such pain. The sloping sides of wilderness mountains Or the buttocks of women abounding in passion?

Vhartrihari does a pining wanderer dare to rest his eye? They spend some time with minds Submerged in the fluid elixir of wisdom, The rest belongs to tender mistresses Whose breasts and hips embody pleasure’s luxury, Mistresses aroused to lust by caresses Concealed in their laps of ample flesh. John Brough gives us this rhymed version: In this vain fleeting universe, a man Of wisdom has two courses: In this vapid, mundane world, wise men take two courses: Lovers scented with sandalwood flashing antelope eyes, arbors of fountains, flowers, and moonlight, a poemss swept with breezes of flowering jasmine — in summertime they fan the flames of passion and arouse the god of love from Paul Elmer More, from A Century of Indian Epigrams Girls with the startled eyes of forest deer, And fluttering hands that drip With sandal-water; bathing-halls with bhartriahri Deep pools to float and dip ; The light moon blown poem the shadowy hours, Cool winds, and odorous flowers.

And the high terraced roof – all things nhartrihari In Summer love’s sweet trance. The face of a fawn-eyed maid delighted by love AMong fragrances? What is most worthy a lover’s attention? Her distraction with love in youth’s early bloom. What can be more lovely for him to breathe than the breath of her mouth? What more beautiful for him to hear than her voice?

Bhartrihari Poems – Poems of Bhartrihari – Poem Hunter

What more beautiful for him to eat than the delicate ambrosia of her lips? Bhartriihari, Wise Sayings of Bhartrihari [shringAra shataka 7] verse Surely the moon does not rise in her face, or a pair of lotuses rest in her eyes, or gold compose her body’s flesh.

Yet, duped by poets’ hyperbole, even a sage, a pondering man worships the body of woman — a mere concoction of skin and flesh and bones.

John Brough gives this verse translation: Her face is not the moon, nor are her eyes Twin lotuses, nor are her arms pure gold She’s flesh and bone. What lies the poets told! Ah, but we love her, we believe the lies.

Poems from the Sanskrit poem 13 verse Woman is kAma’s victorious seal [love’s victorious seal] Imprinting his triumph on all things. Poejs men who forsake her Are fools pursuing illusory fruits, Fools condemned by kAma without mercy [condemned without pity by the god of love] To become naked mendicants, wearing shorn Or tufted or shaggy hair And bearing begging bowls of skull bone.