By Swami Harshananda
Samvarta-smrti seems to be a fairly ancient work. Samvarta is quoted by many authors of dharmaśāstras like Aparārka, Haradatta, Medhātithi, Viśvarupa and others. As many as 200 verses of his, have been given in their works.
There is a printed text which appears to be an epitome of a portion of the original smṛti of Samvarta.
The smṛti is in the form of Samvarta’s teachings to Vāmadeva and others.
The topics dealt with may be summarised as follows:
Rules of conduct for a brahmacārin; prāyaścittas or expiations for various kinds of sins; duties of a householder, a forest hermit and a samnyāsin; special duties of a king; and a few minor topics as the age of girls for marriage.
According to the Mahābhārata (Adi-parva 67) Samvarta was a son of Añgiras. Bṛhaspati and Ucathya were his brothers.
It is difficult to say whether this was the same Sarnvarta who authored this smṛti.
- The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore