Learning Sanskrit by Fresh Approach – Lesson No. 118

Learning Sanskrit by Fresh Approach – Lesson No. 118

संस्कृतभाषायाः नूतनाध्ययनस्य अष्टादशाधिकशततमः (११८) पाठः ।

The following beautiful श्लोक was mentioned by Mr. Avinash Varna in response to a question about मृगजवाक्षमयेव posted at the Samskrita Google-group by a person having his email ID “jbardisban”.

मुक्तेषु रश्मिषु निरायतपूर्वकाया
निष्कम्पचामरशिखा निभृतोर्ध्वकर्णाः ।
आत्मोद्धतैरपि रजोभिरलङ्घनीया
धावन्त्यमी मृगजवाक्षमयेव रथ्याः ॥ ८ ॥

Mr. Varna also gave the context that the श्लोक presents a beautiful description of the speed of दुष्यन्त’s horses, as they pursue कृष्णसार (कालिदासस्य अभिज्ञानशाकुन्तले प्रथमोऽङ्कः) ।

(१) पदच्छेदैः –

There are विसर्ग-संधि-s at the endings of first and third lines. It is hence better to write the verse in two lines, to bring forth the पदच्छेद-s properly.

मुक्तेषु रश्मिषु निरायतपूर्वकायाः निष्कम्पचामरशिखाः निभृत-ऊर्ध्व-कर्णाः ।
आत्म-उद्धतैः अपि रजोभिः अलङ्घनीयाः धावन्ति अमी मृग-जव-अक्षमया इव रथ्याः ॥

(२) सामासिक-शब्दानां विश्लेषणानि – Since we have been doing word-by-word analysis all along, now it should be alright to focus mainly on compound words.

(२-१) निरायतपूर्वकायाः =

  • निरायता (निर् + आयता) = न आयता (नञ्-तत्पुरुषः)
  • पूर्वं निरायता निरायतपूर्वा (कर्मधारयः)
  • निरायतपूर्वा काया यस्य सः निरायतपूर्वकायः (बहुव्रीहिः) –> ते निरायतपूर्वकायाः (अश्वाः)

(२-२) निष्कम्पचामरशिखाः

  • चामरस्य शिखाः इति चामरशिखाः (षष्ठी-तत्पुरुषः)
  • निष्कम्पाः – निर्गतः कम्पः याभ्यः ताः निष्कम्पाः (बहुव्रीहिः)
  • निष्कम्पाः चामरशिखाः येषां ते निष्कम्पचामरशिखाः (अश्वाः)

(२-३) निभृतोर्ध्वकर्णाः

  • निभृतौ ऊर्ध्वम् निभृतोर्ध्वौ (कर्मधारयः)
  • निभृतोर्ध्वौ कर्णौ यस्य सः निभृतोर्ध्वकर्णः (बहुव्रीहिः) –> ते निभृतोर्ध्वकर्णाः (अश्वाः)

(२-४) आत्मोद्धतैः

  • आत्मना उद्धतः इति आत्मोद्धतः (तृतीया-तत्पुरुषः) –> तैः (रजोभिः)

(२-५) अलङ्घनीयाः

  • न लङ्घनीयाः इति अलङ्घनीयाः (नञ्-तत्पुरुषः)

(२-६) मृगजवाक्षमया

  • मृगस्य जवः इति मृगजवः (षष्ठी-तत्पुरुषः)
  • न क्षमा इति अक्षमा (नञ्-तत्पुरुषः)
  • मृगजवेऽपि अक्षमा मृगजवाक्षमा (सप्तमी-तत्पुरुषः) |
  • तद्विधया क्षमया इति मृगजवाक्षमया
  • Ability of speed, which cannot be matched by deers
  • It comes to mind that the word can as well be मृगजवक्षमया
    • मृगस्य जवः इति मृगजवः (षष्ठी-तत्पुरुषः)
    • मृगजवस्य (इव) क्षमा मृगजवक्षमा (षष्ठी-तत्पुरुषः)
    • Ability of speed, which is similar to that of deer
  • Thanks to Dr. Avinash Sathaye for pointing out a very valid point. Very correctly he advises “.. It seems that you are using the fem. word क्षमा in the same sense as क्षमता. That seems unusual. I would propose the following alternate: क्षमा has the sense of tolerance, patience.  Thus, अक्षमा would be the opposite – intolerance, impatience etc. Thus the horses are impatient with the speed of the deer that they are chasing and want to catch it soon! So they are running without tolerance for the speed of the deer. ..”

(३) अन्वयानुवादौ (Syntax and translation) –

मुक्तेषु रश्मिषु निरायतपूर्वकायाः निष्कम्पचामरशिखाः निभृत-ऊर्ध्व-कर्णाः ।
आत्म-उद्धतैः अपि रजोभिः अलङ्घनीयाः धावन्ति अमी मृग-जव-अक्षमया इव रथ्याः ॥

मुक्तेषु रश्मिषु निरायतपूर्वकायाः निष्कम्पचामरशिखाः निभृत-ऊर्ध्व-कर्णाः आत्म-उद्धतैः अपि रजोभिः अलङ्घनीयाः अमी रथ्याः मृग-जव-अक्षमया इव धावन्ति ।
Now that the reins are left loose, these horses of this chariot, whose bodies are already relaxed, are so running with the speed of the deer (OR with the speed, which cannot be matched (even) by deers) that their plumes have become straight, their ears pricked up and dust raised by them is left behind (the dust cannot catch up with them).

(४) वृत्त-विश्लेषणम्

मुक्तेषु रश्मिषु निरायतपूर्वकायाः (१४ अक्षराणि)
(२-२-१) (२-१-१) (१-२-१)-(१-२-१)-२-२ इति मात्राः ।
त-भ-ज-ज-ग-ग गणाः

वृत्तलक्षणम् – उक्ता वसन्ततिलका तभजाः जगौ गः
(५) टिप्पण्यः (Notes) –

5-1) In this श्लोक, कालिदास presents a picture-perfect description of the high-speed horses of दुष्यन्त’s chariot. This underscores how a good poet would have keen observation.

5-2)  At http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/sha/sha05.htm one gets the translation of this श्लोक by Arthur W. Ryder (1914) as –

The lines hang loose; the steeds unreined
Dart forward with a will.
Their ears are pricked; their necks are strained;
Their plumes lie straight and still.
They leave the rising dust behind;
They seem to float upon the wind.

Here, the line, “.. lines hang loose; the steeds unreined ..” seems to miss the correct interpretation of निरायतपूर्वकायाः, i.e. whose bodies are already relaxed. Maybe, the words “with a will” in the line “.. Dart forward with a will ..” imply translation of निरायतपूर्वकायाः

An expert charioteer would make sure that the horses are relaxed, before they are reined to a chariot. So the word निरायतपूर्वकायाः very much brings forth the essential expertise of a charioteer, that he must know his horses very well and he knows how to get them in the right mood.

5-3) The words मुक्तेषु रश्मिषु also brings forth that an expert charioteer would have the confidence that the horses would be under control, even when driving the chariot at speed would need letting the reins loose.

Since the words मुक्तेषु रश्मिषु connote the सति-सप्तमी construct, which is a special construct in Sanskrit, I thought it good to translate this as “Now that the reins are left loose, ..”

5-4) It appeals to be a good discretion of कालिदास to compose this verse in वसन्ततिलका-meter, which has a rhythm, similar to the rhythm of tapping of hoofs of the horses.

5-5) In अभिज्ञानशाकुन्तलम् in this श्लोक, the charioteer is seeking दुष्यन्त’s appreciation of how the horses are running. The sight of the horses is so charming that even a charioteer became poetic. That is the poetic skill of कालिदास, to put this verse as being said by a charioteer. That subtle ! Simply great !!

शुभमस्तु |

-o-O-o-

 

 

2 thoughts on “Learning Sanskrit by Fresh Approach – Lesson No. 118

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