Part 1 of 2
This Arthasástra is made as a compendium of almost all the Arthasástras, which, in view of acquisition and maintenance of the earth, have been composed by ancient teachers.
Of this work, the following are the contents by sections and books:
BOOK I. Concerning Discipline.
The end of Sciences; association with the aged; restraint of the organs of sense; the creation of ministers; the creation of councillors and priests; ascertaining by temptations purity or impurity in the character of ministers; the institution of spies. Protection of parties for or against one's own cause in one's own state; winning over the factions for or against an enemy's cause in an enemy's state; the business of council meeting; the mission of envoys; protection of princes; the conduct of a prince kept under restraint; treatment of a prince kept under restraint; the duties of a king; duty towards the harem; personal safety.
BOOK II. The Duties of Government Superintendents.
Formation of villages; division of land; construction of forts; buildings within the fort; the duty of the chamberlain; the business of collection of revenue by the collector-general; the business of keeping up accounts in the office of accountants; detection of what is embezzled by government servants out of state-revenue; examination of the conduct of Government servants; the procedure of forming royal writs; the superintendent of the treasury; examination of gems that are to be entered into the treasury; conducting mining operations and manufacture; the superintendent of gold; the duties of the state goldsmith in the high road; the superintendent of store-house; the superintendent of commerce; the superintendent of forest produce; the superintendent of the armoury; the superintendent of weights and measures; measurement of space and time; the superintendent of tolls; the superintendent of weaving; the superintendent of agriculture; the superintendent of liquor; the superintendent of slaughter-house; the superintendent of prostitutes; the superintendent of ships; the superintendent of cows; the superintendent of horses; the superintendent of elephants; the superintendent of chariots; the superintendent of infantry; the duty of the commander- in-chief , the superintendent of passports; the superintendent of pasture lands; the duty of revenue collectors; spies in the guise of householders, merchants, and ascetics; the duty of a city superintendent.
BOOK III. Concerning Law.
Determination of forms of agreements; determination of legal disputes; concerning marriage; division of inheritance; buildings; non-performance of agreements; recovery of debts; concerning deposits; rules regarding slaves and labourers; co-operative undertakings; rescision of purchase and sale; resumption of gifts, and sale without ownership; ownership; robbery; defamation; assault; gambling and betting, and miscellaneous.
BOOK IV. Removal of Thorns.
Protection of artisans; protection of merchants; remedies against national calamities; suppression of the wicked living by foul means; detection of youths of criminal tendency by ascetic spies; seizure of criminals on suspicion or in the very act; examination of sudden death; trial and torture to elicit confession; protection of all kinds of government departments; fines in lieu of mutilation of limbs; death with or without torture; sexual intercourse with immature girls; atonement for violating justice.
BOOK V. Conduct of Courtiers.
Concerning the awards of punishments; replenishment of the treasury; concerning subsistence to government servants; the conduct of a courtier; time-serving; consolidation of the kingdom and absolute sovereignty.
BOOK VI. The Source of Sovereign States.
The elements of sovereignty; concerning peace and exertion.
BOOK VII. The End of Sixfold Policy.
The sixfold policy; determination of deterioration, stagnation, and progress; the nature of alliance; the character of equal, inferior and superior kings; forms of agreement made by an inferior king; neutrality after proclaiming war or after concluding a treaty of peace; marching after proclaiming war or after making peace; the march of combined powers; considerations about marching against an assailable enemy and a strong enemy; causes leading to the dwindling, greed and disloyalty of the army; considerations about the combination of powers; the march of combined powers; agreement of peace with or without definite terms; and peace with renegades; peace and war by adopting the double policy; the attitude of an assailable enemy; friends that deserve help; agreement for the acquisition of a friend or gold; agreement of peace for the acquisition of land; agreement for undertaking a work; considerations about an enemy in the rear; recruitment of lost power; measures conducive to peace with a strong and provoked enemy; the attitude of a conquered enemy; the attitude of a conquered king; making peace and breaking it; the conduct of a Madhyama king; of a neutral king and of a circle of states.
BOOK VIII. Concerning Vices and Calamities.
The aggregate of the calamities of the elements of sovereignty; considerations about the troubles of the king and his kingdom; the aggregate of the troubles of men; the group of molestations; the group of obstructions; and the group of financial troubles; the group of troubles of the army; and the group of troubles of a friend.
BOOK IX. The Work of an Invader.
The knowledge of power, place, time, strength and weakness; the time of invasion; the time for recruiting the army; the form of equipment; the work of arraying a rival force; considerations of annoyance in the rear; remedies against internal and external troubles; consideration about loss of men, wealth and profit. Internal and external dangers; persons associated with traitors and enemies; doubts about wealth and harm; and success to be obtained by the employment of alternative strategic means.
BOOK X. Relating to War.
Encampment; march of the camp; protection of the army in times of distress and attack; forms of treacherous fights; encouragement to one's own army; the fight between one's own and enemy's armies; battle-fields; the work of infantry, cavalry, chariots and elephants; distinctive array of troops in respect of wings, flanks and front; distinction between strong and weak troops; battles with infantry, cavalry, chariots and elephants; the array of the army like a staff, a snake, a circle or in detached order; the array of the army against that of an enemy.
BOOK XI. The Conduct of Corporations.
Causes of dissension; secret punishment.
BOOK XII. Concerning a Powerful Enemy.
The duties of a messenger; battle of intrigue; slaying the commander-in-chief, and inciting a circle of states; spies with weapons, fire, and poison; destruction of supply of stores, and of granaries; capture of the enemy by means of secret contrivances or by means of the army; and complete victory.
BOOK XIII. Strategic Means to Capture a Fortress.
Sowing the seeds of dissension; enticement of kings by secret contrivances; the work of spies in a siege; the operation of a siege; restoration of peace in a conquered country.
BOOK XIV. Secret Means.
Means to injure an enemy; wonderful and delusive contrivances; remedies against the injuries of one's own army.
BOOK XV. The Plan of a Treatise.
Paragraphical divisions of this treatise.
Such are the contents of this Science. There are on the whole 15 books, 150 chapters, 180 sections and 6,000 slokas.
This Sástra, bereft of undue enlargement and easy to grasp and understand, has been composed by Kautilya in words the meaning of which has been definitely settled.
[Thus ends Chapter I, "Life of a King" in Book I, "Concerning Discipline" of the Arthasástra of Kautilya.]
CHAPTER II. THE END OF SCIENCES.
Determination of the place of Anvikshaki.
ANVIKSHAKI, the triple Védas (Trayi), Várta (agriculture, cattle-breeding and trade), and Danda-Niti (science of government) are what are called the four sciences.
The school of Manu (Manava) hold that there are only three sciences: the triple Vedas, Varta and the science of government, inasmuch as the science of Anvikshaki is nothing but a special branch of the Vedas.
The school of Brihaspati say that there are only two sciences: Varta and the science of government, inasmuch as the Triple Vedas are merely an abridgment (Samvarana, pretext?) for a man experienced in affairs temporal (Lokayatravidah).
The school of Usanas declare that there is only one science, and that the science of government; for, they say, it is in that science that all other sciences have their origin and end.
But Kautilya holds that four and only four are the sciences; wherefore it is from these sciences that all that concerns righteousness and wealth is learnt, therefore they are so called.
Anvikshaki comprises the Philosophy of Sankhya, Yoga, and Lokayata (Atheism ?).
Righteous and unrighteous acts (Dharmadharmau) are learnt from the triple Vedas; wealth and non-wealth from Varta; the expedient and the inexpedient (Nayanayau), as well as potency and impotency (Balabale) from the science of government.
When seen in the light of these sciences, the science of Anvikshaki is most beneficial to the world, keeps the mind steady and firm in weal and woe alike, and bestows excellence of foresight, speech and action.
Light to all kinds of knowledge, easy means to accomplish all kinds of acts and receptacle of all kinds of virtues, is the Science of Anvikshaki ever held to be.
[Thus ends Chapter II, "Determination of the place of Anvikshaki" among Sciences in Book I, "Concerning Discipline" of the Arthasástra of Kautilya.]
CHAPTER III. THE END OF SCIENCES.
Determination of the place of the Triple Vedas.
THE three Vedas, Sama, Rik and Yajus, constitute the triple Vedas. These together with Atharvaveda and the Itihasaveda are (known as) the Vedas.
Siksha (Phonetics), Kalpa (ceremonial injunctions), Vyakarana (grammar), Nirukta (glossarial explanation of obscure Vedic terms), Chandas (Prosody), and Astronomy form the Angas.
As the triple Vedas definitely determine the respective duties of the four castes and of the four orders of religious life, they are the most useful.
The duty of the Brahman is study, teaching, performance of sacrifice, officiating in others' sacrificial performance and the giving and receiving of gifts.
That of a Kshatriya is study, performance of sacrifice, giving gifts, military occupation, and protection of life.
That of a Vaisya is study, performance of sacrifice, giving gifts, agriculture, cattle breeding, and trade.
That of a Sudra is the serving of twice-born (dvijati), agriculture, cattle-breeding, and trade (varta), the profession of artizans and court-bards (karukusilavakarma).
The duty of a householder is earning livelihood by his own profession, marriage among his equals of different ancestral Rishis, intercourse with his wedded wife after her monthly ablution, gifts to gods, ancestors, guests, and servants, and the eating of the remainder.
That of a student (Brahmacharin) is learning the Vedas, fire-worship, ablution, living by begging, and devotion to his teacher even at the cost of his own life, or in the absence of his teacher, to the teacher's son, or to an elder classmate.
That of a Vanaprastha (forest-recluse) is observance of chastity, sleeping on the bare ground, keeping twisted locks, wearing deer-skin, fire-worship, ablution, worship of gods, ancestors, and guests, and living upon food stuffs procurable in forests.
That of an ascetic retired from the world (Parivrajaka) is complete control of the organs of sense, abstaining from all kinds of work, disowning money, keeping from society, begging in many places, dwelling in forests, and purity both internal and external.
Harmlessness, truthfulness, purity, freedom from spite, abstinence from cruelty, and forgiveness are duties common to all.
The observance of one's own duty leads one to Svarga and infinite bliss (Anantya). When it is violated, the world will come to an end owing to confusion of castes and duties.
Hence the king shall never allow people to swerve from their duties; for whoever upholds his own duty, ever adhering to the customs of the Aryas, and following the rules of caste and divisions of religious life, will surely. be happy both here and hereafter. For the world, when maintained in accordance with injunctions of the triple Vedas, will surely progress, but never perish.
[Thus ends Chapter III, "Determination of the place of the Triple Vedas" among Sciences in Book I, "Concerning Discipline" of the Arthasástra of Kautilya.]
CHAPTER IV. THE END OF SCIENCES.
Varta and Dandaniti.
AGRICULTURE, cattle-breeding and trade constitute Varta. It is most useful in that it brings in grains, cattle, gold, forest produce (kupya), and free labour (vishti). It is by means of the treasury and the army obtained solely through Varta that the king can hold under his control both his and his enemy's party.
That sceptre on which the well-being and progress of the sciences of Anvikshaki, the triple Vedas, and Varta depend is known as Danda (punishment). That which treats of Danda is the law of punishment or science of government (dandaniti).
It is a means to make acquisitions, to keep them secure, to improve them, and to distribute among the deserved the profits of. improvement. It is on this science of government that the course of the progress of the world depends.
"Hence," says my teacher, "whoever is desirous of the progress of the world shall ever hold the sceptre raised (udyatadanda). Never can there be a better instrument than the sceptre to bring people under control."
"No," says Kautilya; for whoever imposes severe punishment becomes repulsive to the people; while he who awards mild punishment becomes contemptible. But whoever imposes punishment as deserved becomes respectable. For punishment (danda) when awarded with due consideration, makes the people devoted to righteousness and to works productive of wealth and enjoyment; while punishment, when ill-awarded under the influence of greed and anger or owing to ignorance, excites fury even among hermits and ascetics dwelling in forests, not to speak of householders.
But when the law of punishment is kept in abeyance, it gives rise to such disorder as is implied in the proverb of fishes (matsyanyayamudbhavayati); for in the absence of a magistrate (dandadharabhave), the strong will swallow the weak; but under his protection, the weak resist the strong.
This people (loka) consisting of four castes and four orders of religious life, when governed by the king with his sceptre, will keep to their respective paths, ever devotedly adhering to their respective duties and occupations.
[Thus ends Chapter IV, "Determination of the Place of Varta and of Dandaniti" among Sciences in Book I, "Concerning Discipline" of the Arthasástra of Kautilya. "The End of Sciences" is completed.]
CHAPTER V. ASSOCIATION WITH THE AGED.
HENCE the (first) three sciences (out of the four) are dependent for their well-being on the science of government. Danda, punishment, which alone can procure safety and security of life is, in its turn, dependent on discipline (vinaya).
Discipline is of two kinds: artificial and natural; for instruction (kriya) can render only a docile being conformable to the rules of discipline, and not an undocile being (adravyam). The study of sciences can tame only those who are possessed of such mental faculties as obedience, hearing, grasping, retentive memory, discrimination, inference, and deliberation, but not others devoid of such faculties.
Sciences shall be studied and their precepts strictly observed under the authority of specialist teachers.
Having undergone the ceremony of tonsure, the student shall learn the alphabet (lipi) and arithmetic. After investiture with sacred thread, he shall study the triple Vedas, the science of Anvikshaki under teachers of acknowledged authority (sishta), the science of Vatra under government superintendents, and the science of Dandaniti under theoretical and practical politicians (vaktriprayoktribhyah).
He (the prince) shall observe celibacy till he becomes sixteen years old. Then he shall observe the ceremony of tonsure (godana) and marry.
In view of maintaining efficient discipline, he shall ever and invariably keep company with aged professors of sciences in whom alone discipline has its firm root.
He shall spend the forenoon in receiving lessons in military arts concerning elephants, horses, chariots, and weapons, and the afternoon in hearing the Itihasa.
Purana, Itivritta (history), Akhyayika (tales), Udaharana (illustrative stories), Dharmasastra, and Arthasastra are (known by the name) Itihasa.
During the rest of the day and night, he shall not only receive new lessons and revise old lessons, but also hear over and again what has not been clearly understood.
For from hearing (sutra) ensues knowledge; from knowledge steady application (yoga) is possible; and from application self-possession (atmavatta) is possible. This is what is meant by efficiency of learning (vidhyasamarthyam).
The king who is well educated and disciplined in sciences, devoted to good Government of his subjects, and bent on doing good to all people will enjoy the earth unopposed.
[Thus ends Chapter V, "Association with the Aged" in Book I, "Concerning Discipline" of the Arthasástra of Kautilya.]
CHAPTER VI. RESTRAINT OF THE ORGANS OF SENSE.
The Shaking off of the Aggregate of the Six Enemies.
RESTRAINT of the organs of sense, on which success in study and discipline depends can be enforced by abandoning lust, anger, greed, vanity (mána), haughtiness (mada), and overjoy (harsha).
Absence of discrepancy (avipratipatti) in the perception of sound, touch, colour, flavour, and scent by means of the ear, the skin, the eyes, the tongue, and the nose, is what is meant by the restraint of the organs of sense. Strict observance of the precepts of sciences also means the same; for the sole aim of all the sciences is nothing but restraint of the organs of sense.
Whosoever is of reverse character, whoever has not his organs of sense under his control, will soon perish, though possessed of the whole earth bounded by the four quarters.
For example: Bhoja, known also by the name, Dándakya, making a lascivious attempt on a Bráhman maiden, perished along with his kingdom and relations;
So also Karála, the Vaideha. Likewise Janamejaya under the influence of anger against Bráhmans, as well as Tálajangha against the family of Bhrigus.
Aila in his attempt under the influence of greed to make exactions from Bráhmans, as well as Ajabindu, the Sauvíra (in a similar attempt);
Rávana unwilling under the influence of vanity to restore a stranger's wife, as well as Duryodhana to part with a portion of his kingdom; Dambhodbhava as well as Arjuna of Haihaya dynasty being so haughty as to despise all people;
Vátápi in his attempt under the influence of overjoy to attack Agastya, as well as the corporation of the Vrishnis in their attempt against Dvaipáyana.
Thus these and other several kings, falling a prey to the aggregate of the six enemies and having failed to restrain their organs of sense, perished together with their kingdom and relations. Having driven out the aggregate of the six enemies, as well as Ambarísha of Jámadagnya famous for his restraint of the organs of sense Nábhága long enjoyed the earth.
[Thus ends Chapter VI, "The Shaking off of the Aggregate of the Six Enemies" in the section of the "Restraint Of the Organs of Sense" in Book I, "Concerning Discipline" of the Arthasástra of Kautilya.]
CHAPTER VII. RESTRAINT OF THE ORGANS OF SENSE.
The Life of a Saintly King.
HENCE by overthrowing the aggregate of the six enemies, he shall restrain the organs of sense; acquire wisdom by keeping company with the aged; see through his spies; establish safety and security by being ever active; maintain his subjects in the observance of their respective duties by exercising authority; keep up his personal discipline by receiving lessons in the sciences; and endear himself to the people by bringing them in contact with wealth and doing good to them.
Thus with his organs of sense under his control, he shall keep away from hurting the women and property of others; avoid not only lustfulness, even in dream, but also falsehood, haughtiness, and evil proclivities; and keep away from unrighteous and uneconomical transactions.
Not violating righteousness and economy, he shall enjoy his desires. He shall never be devoid of happiness. He may enjoy in an equal degree the three pursuits of life, charity, wealth, and desire, which are inter-dependent upon each other. Any one of these three, when enjoyed to an excess, hurts not only the other two, but also itself.
Kautilya holds that wealth and wealth alone is important, inasmuch as charity and desire depend upon wealth for their realisation.
Those teachers and ministers who keep him from falling a prey to dangers, and who, by striking the hours of the day as determined by measuring shadows (chháyánálikápratodena) warn him of his careless proceedings even in secret shall invariably be respected.
Sovereignty (rájatva) is possible only with assistance. A single wheel can never move. Hence he shall employ ministers and hear their opinion.
[Thus ends Chapter VII, “The Life of a Saintly King” in the section of the “Restraint of the Organs of Sense,” in Book I, “Concerning Discipline” of the Arthasástra of Kautilya; “Restraint of the Organs of Sense" is completed.]
CHAPTER VIII. CREATION OF MINISTERS.
"THE King," says Bháradvája, "shall employ his classmates as his ministers; for they can be trusted by him inasmuch as he has personal knowledge of their honesty and capacity."
“No,” says Visáláksha, "for, as they have been his playmates as well, they would despise him. But he shall employ as ministers those whose secrets, possessed of in common, are well known to him. Possessed of habits and defects in common. with the king, they would never hurt him lest he would betray their secrets."
“Common is this fear,” says Parásara, “for under the fear of betrayal of his own secrets, the king may also follow them in their good and bad acts.
"Under the control of as many persons as are made aware by the king of his own secrets, might he place himself in all humility by that disclosure. Hence he shall employ as ministers those who have proved faithful to him under difficulties fatal to life and are of tried devotion."
"No,” says Pisuna, “for this is devotion, but not intelligence (buddhigunah). He shall appoint as ministers those who, when employed as financial matters, show as much as, or more than, the fixed revenue, and are thus of tried ability.”
"No," says Kaunapadanta, "for such persons are devoid of other ministerial qualifications; he shall, therefore, employ as ministers those whose fathers and grandfathers had been ministers before; such persons, in virtue of their knowledge of past events and of an established relationship with the king, will, though offended, never desert him; for such faithfulness is seen even among dumb animals; cows, for example, stand aside from strange cows and ever keep company with accustomed herds."
"No," says Vátavyádhi, "for such persons, having acquired complete dominion over the king, begin to play themselves as the king. Hence he shall employ as ministers such new persons as are proficient in the science of polity. It is such new persons who will regard the king as the real sceptre-bearer (dandadhara) and dare not offend him."
"No," says the son of Báhudantí (a woman); "for a man possessed of only theoretical knowledge and having no experience of practical politics is likely to commit serious blunders when engaged in actual works. Hence he shall employ as ministers such as are born of high family and possessed of wisdom, purity of purpose, bravery and loyal feelings inasmuch as ministerial appointments shall purely depend on qualifications."
"This," says Kautilya, "is satisfactory in all respects; for a man's ability is inferred from his capacity shown in work. And in accordance in difference in the working capacity,
Having divided the spheres of their powers and having definitely taken into consideration the place and time where and when they have to work, such persons shall be employed not as councillors (mantrinah) but as ministerial officers (amátyah).
[Thus ends Chapter VIII, “Creation of Ministers” in Book I, “Concerning Discipline” of the Arthasástra of Kautilya.]
CHAPTER IX. THE CREATION OF COUNCILLORS AND PRIESTS.
NATIVE, born of high family, influential, well trained in arts, possessed of foresight, wise, of strong memory, bold, eloquent, skillful, intelligent, possessed of enthusiasm, dignity, and endurance, pure in character, affable, firm in loyal devotion, endowed with excellent conduct, strength, health and bravery, free from procrastination and ficklemindedness, affectionate, and free from such qualities as excite hatred and enmity--these are the qualifications of a ministerial officer (amátyasampat).
Such as are possessed of one-half or one-quarter of the above qualifications come under middle and low ranks.
Of these qualifications, native birth and influential position shall be ascertained from reliable persons; educational qualifications (silpa) from professors of equal learning; theoretical and practical knowledge, foresight, retentive memory, and affability shall be tested from successful, application in works; eloquence, skillfulness and flashing intelligence from power shown in narrating stories (katháyogeshu, i.e., in conversation); endurance, enthusiasm, and bravery in troubles; purity of life, friendly disposition, and loyal devotion by frequent association; conduct, strength, health, dignity, and freedom from indolence and ficklemindedness shall be ascertained from their intimate friends; and affectionate and philanthrophic nature by personal experience.
The works of a king may be visible, invisible (paroksha) and inferential.
That which he sees is visible; and that which he is taught by another is invisible; and inference of the nature of what is not accomplished from what is accomplished is inferential..
As works do not happen to be simultaneous, are various in form, and pertain to distant and different localities, the king shall, in view of being abreast of time and place, depute his ministers to carry them out. Such is the work of ministers.
Him whose family and character are highly spoken of, who is well educated in the Vedás and the six Angas, is skillful in reading portents providential or accidental, is well versed in the science of government, and who is obedient and who can prevent calamities providential or human by performing such expiatory rites as are prescribed in the Atharvaveda, the king shall employ as high priest. As a student his teacher, a son his father, and a servant his master, the king shall follow him.
That Kshatriya breed which is brought up by Bráhmans, is charmed with the counsels of good councillors, and which faithfully follows the precepts of the sástras becomes invincible and attains success though unaided with weapons.
[Thus ends Chapter IX, “Creation of Councillors and Priests” in Book I “Concerning Discipline” of the Arthasástra of Kautilya.]
CHAPTER X. ASCERTAINING BY TEMPTATIONS PURITY OR IMPURITY IN THE CHARACTER OF MINISTERS.
ASSISTED by his prime minister (mantri) and his high priest, the king shall, by offering temptations, examine the character of ministers (amátya) appointed in government departments of ordinary nature.
The king shall dismiss a priest who, when ordered, refuses to teach the Vedás to an outcaste person or to officiate in a sacrificial performance (apparently) undertaken by an outcaste person (ayájya).
Then the dismissed priest shall, through the medium of spies under the guise of class-mates (satri), instigate each minister one after another, saying on oath "this king is unrighteous; well let us set up in his place another king who is righteous, or who is born of the same family as of this king, or who is kept imprisoned, or a neighbouring king of his family and of self-sufficiency (ekapragraha), or a wild chief (atavika), or an upstart (aupapádika); this attempt is to the liking of all of us; what dost thou think ?"
If any one or all of the ministers refuse to acquiesce in such a measure, he or they shall be considered pure. This is what is called religious allurement.
A commander of the army, dismissed from service for receiving condemnable things (asatpragraha) may, through the agency of spies under the guise of class-mates (satri), incite each minister to murder the king in view of acquiring immense wealth, each minister being asked "this attempt is to the liking of all of us; what dost thou think?"
If they refuse to agree, they are to be considered pure. This is what is termed monetary allurement.
A woman-spy under the guise of an ascetic and highly esteemed in the harem of the king may allure each prime minister (mahámátra) one after another, saying "the queen is enamoured of thee and has made arrangements for thy entrance into her chamber; besides this, there is also the certainty of large acquisitions of wealth."
If they discard the proposal, they are pure. This is what is styled love-allurement.
With the intention of sailing on a commercial vessel (prahavananimittam), a minister may induce all other ministers to follow him. Apprehensive of danger, the king may arrest them all. A spy under the guise of a fraudulent disciple, pretending to have suffered imprisonment may incite each of the ministers thus deprived of wealth and rank, saying, "the king has betaken himself to an unwise course; well, having murdered him, let us put another in his stead. We all like this; what dost thou think?"
If they refuse to agree, they are pure. This is what is termed allurement under fear.
Of these tried ministers, those whose character has been tested under religious allurements shall be employed in civil and criminal courts (dharmasthaníyakantaka sodhaneshu); those whose purity has been tested under monetary allurements shall be employed in the work of a revenue collector and chamberlain; those who have been tried under love-allurements shall be appointed to superintend the pleasure-grounds (vihára) both external and internal; those who have been tested by allurements under fear shall be appointed to immediate service; and those whose character has been tested under all kinds of allurements shall be employed as prime ministers (mantrinah), while those who are proved impure under one or all of these allurements shall be appointed in mines, timber and elephant forests, and manufactories.
Teachers have decided that in accordance with ascertained purity, the king shall employ in corresponding works those ministers whose character has been tested under the three pursuits of life, religion, wealth and love, and under fear.
Never, in the view of Kautilya, shall the king make himself or his queen an object (laksham, butt) of testing the character of his councillors, nor shall he vitiate the pure like water with poison.
Sometimes the prescribed medicine may fail to reach the person of moral disease; the mind of the valiant, though naturally kept steadfast, may not, when once vitiated and repelled under the four kinds of allurements, return to and recover its original form.
Hence having set up an external object as the butt for all the four kinds of allurements, the king shall, through the agency of spies (satri), find out the pure or impure character of his ministers (amátya).
[Thus ends Chapter X, “Ascertaining by Temptations Purity or Impurity in the Character of Ministers,” in Book I, “Concerning Discipline” of the Arthasástra of Kautilya.]
CHAPTER XI. THE INSTITUTION OF SPIES.
ASSISTED by the council of his ministers tried under espionage, the king shall proceed to create spies: --Spies under the guise of a fraudulent disciple (kápatika-chhátra), a recluse (udásthita), a householder (grihapaitika), a merchant (vaidehaka), an ascetic practising austerities (tápasa), a class-mate or a colleague (satri), a fire-brand (tíkshna), a poisoner (rasada), and a mendicant woman (bhikshuki).
A skillful person capable of guessing the mind of others is a fraudulent disciple. Having encouraged such a spy with honour and money rewards, the minister shall tell him, "sworn to the king and myself, thou shalt inform us of whatever wickedness thou findest in others."
One who is initiated in asceticism and is possessed of foresight and pure character is a recluse. This spy, provided with much money and many disciples, shall carry on agriculture, cattle-rearing, and trade (vártakarma) on the lands allotted to him for the purpose. Out of the produce and profits thus acquired, he shall provide all ascetics with subsistence, clothing and lodging, and send on espionage such among those under his protection as are desirous to earn a livelihood (vrittikáma), ordering each of them to detect a particular kind of crime committed in connection with the king's wealth and to report of it when they come to receive their subsistence and wages. All the ascetics (under the recluse) shall severally send their followers on similar errands.
A cultivator, fallen from his profession, but possessed of foresight and pure character is termed a householder spy. This spy shall carry on the cultivation of lands allotted to him for the purpose, and maintain cultivators, etc.--as before.
A trader, fallen from his profession, but possessed of foresight and pure character, is a merchant spy. This spy shall carry on the manufacture of merchandise on lands allotted to him for the purpose, etc.,--as before.
A man with shaved head (munda) or braided hair (jatila) and desirous to earn livelihood is a spy under the guise of an ascetic practising austerities. Such a spy surrounded by a host of disciples with shaved head or braided hair may take his abode in the suburbs of a city, and pretend as a person barely living on a handful of vegetables or meadow grass (yavasamushti) taken once in the interval of a month or two, but he may take in secret his favourite food-stuffs (gúdhamishtamáháram).
Merchant spies pretending to be his disciples may worship him as one possessed of preternatural powers. His other disciples may widely proclaim that "this ascetic is an accomplished expert of preternatural powers."
Regarding those persons who, desirous of knowing their future, throng to him, he may, through palmistry, foretell such future events as he can ascertain by the nods and signs of his disciples (angavidyayá sishyasanjnábhischa) concerning the works of high-born people of the country,-- viz., small profits, destruction by fire, fear from robbers, the execution of the seditious, rewards for the good, forecast of foreign affairs (videsa pravrittivijnánam), saying, “this will happen to-day, that to-morrow, and that this king will do.” Such assertions of the ascetic his disciples shall corroborate (by adducing facts and figures).
He shall also foretell not only the rewards which persons possessed of foresight, eloquence, and bravery are likely to receive at the hands of the king, but also probable changes in the appointments of ministers.
The king's minister shall direct his affairs in conformity to the forecast made by the ascetic. He shall appease with offer of wealth and honour those who have had some well known cause to be disaffected, and impose punishments in secret on those who are for no reason disaffected or who are plotting against the king.
Honoured by the king with awards of money and titles, these five institutes of espionage (samstháh) shall ascertain the purity of character of the king's servants.
[Thus ends Chapter XI, "The Institution of Spies" in Book I, “Concerning Discipline” of the Arthasástra of Kautilya.]
CHAPTER XII. INSTITUTION OF SPIES.
Creation of Wandering Spies.
THOSE orphans (asambandhinah) who are to be necessarily fed by the state and are put to study science, palmistry (angavidya), sorcery (máyágata), the duties of the various orders of religious life, legerdemain (jambhakavidya), and the reading of omens and augury (antara-chakra), are classmate spies or spies learning by social intercourse (samsargavidyasatrinah).
Such brave desperados of the country who, reckless of their own life, confront elephants or tigers in fight mainly for the purpose of earning money are termed fire-brands or fiery spies (tíkshna).
Those who have no trace of filial affection left in them and who are very cruel and indolent are poisoners (rasada).
A poor widow of Bráhman caste, very clever, and desirous to earn her livelihood is a woman ascetic (parivrájiká). Honoured in the king's harem, such a woman shall frequent the residences of the king's prime ministers (mahámátrakuláni).
The same rule shall apply to women with shaved head (munda), as well as to those of súdra caste. All these are wandering spies (sancháráh).
Of these spies, those who are of good family, loyal, reliable, well-trained in the art of putting on disguises appropriate to countries and trades, and possessed of knowledge of many languages and arts shall be sent by the king to espy in his own country the movements of his ministers, priests, commanders of the army, the heir-apparent, the door-keepers, the officer in charge of the harem, the magistrate (prasástri), the collector-general (samáhartri), the chamberlain (sannidhátri), the commissioner (pradeshtri), the city constable (náyaka), the officer in charge of the city (paura), the superintendent of transactions (vyávahárika), the superintendent of manufactories (karmántika), the assembly of councillors (mantriparishad), heads of departments (adhyaksháh), the commissary-general (dandapála), and officers in charge of fortifications, boundaries, and wild tracts.
Fiery spies, such as are employed to hold the royal umbrella, vase, fan, and shoes, or to attend at the throne, chariot, and conveyance shall espy the public character (báhyam cháram) of these (officers).
Classmate spies shall convey this information (i.e., that gathered by the fiery spies) to the institutes of espionage (samsthásvarpayeyuh).
Poisoners such as a sauce-maker (súda), a cook (arálika), procurer of water for bathing (snápaka) shampooer, the spreader of bed (ástaraka), a barber (kalpaka), toilet-maker (prasádaka), a water-servant; servants such as have taken the appearance of a hump-backed person, a dwarf, a pigmy (kiráta), the dumb, the deaf, the idiot, the blind; artisans such as actors, dancers, singers, players on musical instruments, buffoons, and a bard; as well as women shall espy the private character of these officers.
A mendicant woman shall convey this information to the institute of espionage.
The immediate officers of the institutes of espionage (samsthánámantevásinah) shall by making use of signs or writing (samjnálipibhih) set their own spies in motion (to ascertain the validity of the information).
Neither the institutes of espionage nor they (the wandering spies) shall know each other.
If a mendicant woman is stopped at the entrance, the line of door-keepers., spies under the guise of father and mother (mátápitri vyanjanáh), women artisans, court-bards, or prostitutes shall, under the pretext of taking in musical instruments, or through cipher-writing (gudhalekhya), or by means of signs, convey the information to its destined place (cháram nirhareyuh.)
(Spies of the institutes of espionage) may suddenly go out under the pretext of long standing disease, or lunacy, or by setting fire (to something) or by administering poison (to some one).
When the information thus received from these three different sources is exactly of the same version, it shall be held reliable. If they (the three sources) frequently differ, the spies concerned shall either be punished in secret or dismissed.
Those spies who are referred to in Book IV, "Removal of Thorns," shall receive their salaries from those kings (para, i.e., foreign) with whom they live as servants; but when they aid both the states in the work of catching hold of robbers, they shall become recipients of salaries from both the states (ubhayavetanáh).
Those whose sons and wives are kept (as hostages) shall be made recipients of salaries from two states and considered as under the mission of enemies. Purity of character of such persons shall be ascertained through persons of similar profession.
Thus with regard to kings who are inimical, friendly, intermediate, of low rank, or neutral, and with regard to their eighteen government departments (ashtáldasa-tírtha), spies shall be set in motion.
The hump-backed, the dwarf, the eunuch, women of accomplishments, the dumb, and various grades of Mlechcha caste shall be spies inside their houses.
Merchant spies inside forts; saints and ascetics in the suburbs of forts; the cultivator and the recluse in country parts; herdsmen in the boundaries of the country; in forests, forest-dwellers, sramanás, and chiefs of wild tribes, shall be stationed to ascertain the movements of enemies. All these spies shall be very quick in the dispatch of their work.
Spies set up by foreign kings shall also be found out by local spies; spies by spies of like profession. It is the institutes of espionage, secret or avowed, that set spies in motion.
Those chiefs whose inimical design has been found out by spies supporting the king's cause shall, in view of affording opportunity to detect the spies of foreign kings, be made to live on the boundaries of the state.
[Thus ends Chapter XII, “Creation of Wandering Spies” in the section of “The Institution of Spies,” in Book I. “Concerning Discipline” of the Arthasástra of Kautilya.]