[INDOLOGY] question about kings poisoned by wives

farkhondeh iran iran_farkhondeh at yahoo.fr
Mon Apr 8 11:06:55 UTC 2019

Dear Jesse, 

Arthaśāstra 1.20.16 mentions among others the queen who « killed the king of Kāśī by mixing fried grain with poison under the guise of honey. »

Here is the passage of the AŚ followed by Kangle’s translation:

1.20.16 	lājān madhuneti viṣeṇa paryasya devī kāśīrājam viṣadigdhena nūpureṇa vairantyam mekhalāmaṇinā sauvīram jālūtham ādarśena, veṇyāṃ gūḍhaṃ śastraṃ kṛtvā devī vidūrathaṃ jaghāna. 
« The queen killed the king of Kāśī by mixing fried grain with poison under the guise of honey; (the queen killed) Vairantya with an anklet smeared with poison, the king of the Sauvīras with a (poison-smeared) girdle jewel, Jālūtha with a (poison-smeared) mirror; the queen killed Vidūratha by keeping a weapon concealed in the braid of her hair. » (R.P. Kangle, 1972, vol. 2, p. 50).

You might also want to have a look at Kalhaṇa’s Rājataraṅgiṇī 7.685 and 8.1276-1278 where Vidūratha is mentioned (vidūrathādivṛttāntam (…) kelikṣaṇe bruvan (…)). Medhātithi’s commentary on Manu 7.153 mentions anecdotes about kings who were assassinated by queens. I have written a few pages in my PhD dissertation on this topic and I would be happy to share them with you, even though my dissertation is in French. 

Kind regards,
Iris Iran Farkhondeh

Iris Iran Farkhondeh
Docteur en Études Indiennes
Université Sorbonne Nouvelle - Paris 3
Mondes iranien et indien
00 33
iran_farkhondeh at yahoo.fr <mailto:iran_farkhondeh at yahoo.fr>

> Le 6 avr. 2019 à 21:24, Jesse Knutson via INDOLOGY <indology at list.indology.info> a écrit :
> Dear Friends, To emphasize how careful the king should be even among his intimates, the Nītisāra presents a series of brief anecdotes about kings who were assassinated by by their wives and family members for a variety of reasons (specified concisely by the comm. Jayamaṅgalā). I was wondering if any of you know these stories in more detail from other sources. These are the stories of Bhadrasena (killed by his brother hiding in the queen's quarters), Kārūṣa (killed by his son hiding under his mother's bed), a certain Kāśirājendra (killed by wife with poisoned rice), Vairūpya (killed with a poisoned girdle-jem), and Jāruṣya (killed by a small dagger hidden in the queen's braid). Thanks and all best, भवदीयः,J 
> -- 
> ------------------------------------------------------------------
> Jesse Ross Knutson PhD
> Associate Professor of Sanskrit Language and Literature
> Department of Indo-Pacific Languages and Literatures
> University of Hawai'i at Mānoa
> 461 Spalding
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