The musicological portions of the Saṅgītanārāyaṇa : a critical edition and commentary
The Saṅgītanārāyaṇa, attributed to the Gajapati king Nārāyad nadeva of Parlākhimidi but almost certainly composed by his guru Kaviratna Purud sottamamisra, is the most extensive surviving Sanskrit treatise on music to have been composed in the eastern region of India now known as Orissa. The treatise contains four chapters, gītanirnaya (on vocal music), vādyanirṇaya (on instruments), nāṭyanirṇaya (on dance and the mimetic art), and śuddhaprabandhodāharaṇa (sample compositions of the śuddha and sālaga varieties). The thesis contains a critical edition of the first, second and fourth of these chapters with an English translation, commentary and introduction. Though the whole text was issued in a printed edition by the Orissa Sangeet Natak Akademi in 1966, the new edition offers substantial revisions and corrections to the published version. Eleven manuscripts have been examined; these are in Nagari, Bengali and Oriya scripts and are held in collections in Orissa, in other South Asian libraries, and in two British libraries. All of the manuscript evidence has been presented in a critical apparatus and in a section of supplementary textual notes. The commentary examines the technical contents of the work in detail and places the treatise within its Eastern Indian context. Special attention is drawn to certain subjects, for instance the account of compositional forms and metres, which represent a regional tradition, but all topics are placed also against the background of Sanskrit musicological traditions from other parts of India; some topics in the traditional sastra are thereby re-examined. In the introduction, the historical setting of the work is assessed, and the manuscript evidence is summarised. The proposed stemma codicum shows two groups of manuscripts, one from Orissa and one based in North India; manuscripts discovered in the future are expected to fit into one of these two.