method of dating RV, III

Harry Falk falk at ZEDAT.FU-BERLIN.DE
Wed Jun 10 09:25:45 UTC 1998

S Krishna wrote:
> I would like to know the earliest known mention of the practice of
> Niyoga in ancient India( historical/mythological).{Niyoga is the
> practice of a woman marrying her brother-in-law on the demise of her
> husband}.
>   Further, from what I know of the Ramayana, rUmA the wife of sugrIva
> is made to marry vAli when sugrIva is exiled by vAli. Is this an example
> of niyOga i.e. the difference being that sugrIva wasn't dead
> when rUma became the wife of vAli.
> Regards,
> Krishna
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niyoga is a topic in the Vasisthadharmasastra, in a chapter which
looks very old (it has several layers) and which has been preserved in a
rather corrupted form. The oldest parts of the VasDhS
certainly go back to the time of Panini (because Panini refers to
words which occur only there). So the 4th century BC may be possible.
Harry Falk

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