THE GUPTA INSCRIPTIONS
gotra,1 for the increase of his own fame, gives an endowment, (of which the interest is) to be
applied to (the maintenance of) a lamp for (the temple of) the divine Sun, established by
Achalavarman and Bhrukuṇṭhasiṅha, Kshatriya merchants of the town of Indrāpura,2 just
touching māḍāsyāta3 in the east of that town.
(Lines 8-10) Whatever has been given through the Brāhmaṇa’s endowment to (the
temple of) the Sun is perpetual from the guild of oil-men, residing at Indrapura, of which
Jīvanta is the head and wherever it (i.e., the guild) may settle down after moving away from
this town and entering (some other place).4 There should then be given by this guild, for the
same time as the moon and the sun (endure), two palas5 of oil by weight (or in figures) by
weight 2, uninterrupted in fulfilment (and) continuing without any diminution from the
(Lines 11-12) Whosever transgresses this grant that has been drawn up, that man,
(becoming as guilty as) the slayer of a cow, (or) the slayer of a spiritual preceptor, (or) the
slayer of a Brāhmaṇa, shall go to the infernal region, being overpowered with those (well-
known) five sins,6 together with the minor sins.
NO. 31 : PLATE XXXI
BHITARĪ STONE PILLAR INSCRIPTION OF SKANDAGUPTA
The column containing this inscription appears to have been discovered in 1834 by
Tregear; but the inscription itself was not observed till a short time afterwards, when General
Cunningham found it, on cleaning away the earth from the lower part of the shaft. The discovery was announced in 1836, by James Prinsep, in the JASB., Vol. V, p. 661. And the inscription was first brought to notice in 1837, in the same journal, Vol. VI, pp. 1 ff., where
W. H. Mill published his reading of the text, and a translation7 of it, accompanied by a lithograph (marked ibid., Vol. V, Plate xxxii), reduced by Prinsep from a copy made by General
Cunningham. In 1871, in CASIR., Vol. I, p. 98 and Plate xxx, General Cunningham published
another lithograph of the inscription. In 1875, in JBBRAS, Vol. X, pp. 59 ff., Bhau Daji
published a revised reading of the text, and a translation of it, accompanied by a lithograph,
from a hand-copy made by Bhagwanlal Indraji.8 In 1885, in the JBBRAS., Vol. XVI, pp. 349
1 Varshagaṇa is perhaps identical with Varshapushpa (v. 1. pushya or pushṭa) included by the Baudhāyana Śrauta-
sūtra in the Yāska division of the Bhṛigi-gōtra.
2 Here, i.e., in line 6, the vowel of the second syllable of this name is long, but below, i.e., in line 7 and 8, it is
3 The meaning of māḍāsyāta is not apparent.
4 A well-known instance of a guild emigrating from one place to another and settling down is furnished
by that of the silk-weavers mentioned in the Mandasōr inscription of Kumāragupta I and Budhavarman (No. 35
5 Pala, a particular weight,=4 suvarṇas or 64 māshas (beans). See also D. R. Bhandarkar’s Carmichael Lectures,
1921, p. 86.
6 The pañcha mahāpātakāni, or ‘five great sins.’ The men who are guilty of these sins are described in the Mānava-
Dharmaśāstra, IX, 235, which is thus translated by Bühler: “The slayer of a Brāhmaṇa, (a twice-born man) who
drinks (the spirituous liquor called) Surā, he who steals (the gold of a Brāhmaṇa) and he who violates a Guru’s
bed, must each and all be considered as men who committed mortal sins (maā-pātaka),” SBE., Vol. XXV, p. 383.
See also Mānava-Dharmaśāstra, XI, 55-59 and Bühler’s Translation, ibid., pp. 441-42. Upanipātaka seems to be the
same as Upapātaka, ‘the longer form being used in this verse for the sake of the metre’ as Fleet rightly remarks.
As regards upapātakas or minor offences, such as ‘slaying king, sacrificing for those who are unworthy to sacrifice’
etc., etc., see the Mānava-Dharmaśāstra, XI, 60-67 and Bühler’s Translation, ibid., pp. 442-44.
7 The translation is reprinted in Thomas’ edition of Prinsep’s Essays, Vol. I, p. 242 ff.
8 This paper was not published till 1875; but it was read before the Society four years earlier, on the 13th