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Title: Study of some Indo-Aryan words for social groups in the early texts
Author: Basu, Dwijendra Nath
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1963
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Mahākula in RV. 1.161,1 is better accepted in the sense of "1" one having an eminent race of line of descent or generation"', as it. was quite usual for the poetic composers of the Vedic hymns to call a camasa which owed its origin to the skill of the Divine Maker Tvastr by the name of mahākula as sprang.from a great origin thereby having a great lineage or a great, generation. Thus, although mahākula is probably figuratively employed,the word kula has in all likelihood the sense of a "social" group comprising ancestors,forming the genealogical, line" or "one comprising people coming down from, the same ancestor".This appears to be the earliest use of the word kula. Kulapāh in RV. X,179,2 and AV.VII,75(72),2 and kulapā( AV.1,14,3 might be the 'masters' and 'the mistress' of the houses respectively,whereby the meaning of the word kula transpires to be'the house' but it does not seem to be just the synonym of grha which is already widely in use in RV. in sense of 'the house'. It can on the other hand be translated by the 'family of the nuclear or expanded type The word kula-gopa occurring in IV.(TS.VI,2,5,5),we have already discussed, possibly denoted 'the de facto protector of the kula' as compared with the words kulapāh and kulapā of RV.& AV. which possibly denoted 'the titular head(s) of the kula'and in these instances kula seems to have denoted 'the extended or expanded family'. Kula in kulinā and kula-ianih in AV(PAIPP).seems to have a "Specialisation of meaning,- of the elevative type" from the meaning denoted in mahākula in RV. Kullna by virtue of its suffix has already a meaning, similar to that of mahākula and kula-janih which appears to be a forerunner of the later kula-stri, has the meaning possibly of 'women of unblemished line of descent' as opposed probably to the meaning denoted by the later "kulatā". Kule in the Rgvedic Khilas probably denoted 'in the race or the line of descent (posterior)'.This would be also another specialisation of the meaning found in Bk.I of RV. Kula in the Brāhmanas generally exposes the second meaning of the word, as found in RV.(Bk.X) & AV.(VII).The members of the kula in the Brāhmanas are found to be the Brahmin guests and also those who have no right of succession to the property of one to whom the kula belonged. Thus if it denoted 'family! the family was of highly expanded size and type. The first meaning (of mahākula) is also noticed in the Brāhmanas (SB.XIV,4,3,32). In the Brāhmanas we find the second meaning taking a new turn. Acāryakula denoting the expanded family of fche preceptor taking the disciples as members of it gradually denoted ,;the house of the preceptor!. In the kulas the servants were also members at time of the Upanisads. In the Sutra period, the meaning of the word kula has developed in many directions. Besides keeping the first meaning, 'race or line of descent' and the specialised meaning of 'eminent lineag' which is more often used in the later Va.Dh.S. etc., we find the concretisation of the abstract sense 'line' to'members of the line, viz. the sons, the grandsons etc'. This is found as late as in the Kāt.Sr.S. The meaning 'house'is established in this period .Another sense of the word is developed in this period, viz. 'a body or number'.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available