Hindoo Tales, Dandin
Hindoo Tales
6:10 h Novels Lvl 6.21
Dashakumaracharita (The narrative of ten young men, IAST: Daśa-kumāra-Carita, Devanagari: दशकुमारचरित) is a prose romance in Sanskrit, attributed to Dandin (दण्डी), believed to have flourished in the seventh to eighth centuries CE. However, there is some obscurity surrounding its textual tradition, the identity of the author and the date of composition. It describes the adventures of ten young men, the Kumaras, all of whom are either princes or sons of royal ministers, as narrated by the men themselves (however, there are irregularities in the text). These narratives are replete with accounts of demigods, ghosts, prostitutes, gamblers, intrigues with voluptuous women, astonishing coincidences, cockfights, anthropophagy, sorcery, robberies, murders and wars. The reader is treated to some very striking passages; for instance, a seductive young girl (all of whose anatomical features are very frankly described) deftly prepares a fragrant meal of rice-gruel and vegetables for her prospective suitor in the sixth chapter of the Dashakumaracharita.

Hindoo Tales

Or, the Adventures of Ten Princes

by Dandin

Translated by P. W. Jacob

Pronunciation of Proper Names

The vowel â, is always to be pronounced as in father.

The vowel a, as in America, or as u in dull, i in bird, &c.

The vowel e, always as a in cake.

The vowel í, as e in cede, or ee in reed.

The vowel i, as in pin.

The vowel ú, as in flute.

The vowel u, as in bull.

Pati is therefore pronounced putty, &c.

Hindoo Tales or, the Adventures of Ten Princes

There was formerly, in the most fertile part of India, a city called Pushpapuri, the capital of Magadha, magnificent as a mine of jewels, abounding in every kind of wealth, surpassing all other cities in splendour and prosperity.

The sovereign of this city and country was Râjahansa, whose armies were formidable with countless elephants and horses, whose glory was unsullied as the moon in a cloudless sky, or the plumage of the swan, and whose fame was sung even by celestial minstrels. Though a terror to his enemies, he was beloved by all his subjects, and especially by the learned and pious brahmans, who were continually employed in prayers and sacrifices to the gods, for the welfare of the king and his people.

The queen Vasumati was worthy of such a husband. She was of high birth and of a sweet temper, and so great was her beauty that it seemed as if the god of love had formed her for his own special delight, by uniting in her single person everything that is most beautiful in the world.

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