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The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 4 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,319 pages of information about The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 4.
Kshatriyas in the observance of the duties assigned to their order.  Indeed, wealth and spouses and every other possession owned by people would have been forcibly taken away but for this protection that the Kshatriyas afford.  The Kshatriya, as the king, becomes the protector or rescuer of all the others.  Hence, the son of the Kshatriya wife shall, without doubt, be held to be superior to him that is born of the Vaisya wife.  The son of the Kshatriya wife, for this, takes a larger share of the paternal property than the son of the Vaisya mother.’

“Yudhishthira said, ’Thou hast duly said what the rules are that apply to Brahmanas.  What, however, are the rules that apply to the others?’

“Bhishma said, ’For the Kshatriya, O delighter of the Kurus, two wives have been ordained.  The Kshatriya may take a third wife from the Sudra order.  Such practice prevails, it is true, but it is not sanctioned by the scriptures.  Even this should be the order, O Yudhisthira, of the spouses of a Kshatriya.  The property of a Kshatriya should, O king, be divided into eight shares.  The son of the Kshatriya wife shall take four of such shares of the paternal property.  The son of the Vaisya wife shall take three of such shares.  The remaining one or the eighth share shall be taken by the son of the Sudra wife.  The son of the Sudra wife, however, shall take only when the father gives but not otherwise.  For the Vaisya only one wife has been ordained.  A second wife is taken from the Sudra order.  The practice prevails, it is true, but it is not sanctioned by the scriptures.  If a Vaisya has two wives, one of whom is a Vaisya and the other a Sudra, there is a difference between them in respect of status.  The wealth of a Vaisya, O chief of Bharata’s race, should be divided Into five portions.  I shall now speak of the sons of a Vaisya by a wife of his own order and by one belonging to the inferior order, as also of the manner in which, O king his wealth is to be distributed among those children.  The son born of the Vaisya wife shall take four of such shares of his father’s wealth.  The fifth share, O Bharata, has been said to belong to the son born of the Sudra wife.  Such a son, however, shall take when the father gives.  He should not take anything unless the father gives it to him.  The son that is begotten on a Sudra wife by persons of the three higher orders should always be regarded as disentitled to any share of the sire’s wealth.  The Sudra should have only one wife taken from his own order.  He can under no circumstances, take any other spouse.  Even if he happens to have a century of sons by such a spouse, all of them share equally the wealth that he may leave behind.  As regards all the orders, the children born of the spouse taken from the husband’s own order shall, it has been laid down, share equally the father’s wealth.  The eldest son’s share shall be greater than that of every other son, for he shall take one share more than each of his brothers, consisting

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