By Swami Harshananda
Perhaps the Manusmṛti is one of the most ancient and authoritative works in the dharmaśāstra literature. The earliest and exhaustive commentary on it is the bhāṣya of Medhātithi. Circumstantial evidence, as gleaned from other works of dharmaśāstra, points his probable period to be A. D. 825-900.
The Manusmṛti with the bhāṣya of Medhātithi has been published three or four times. Nothing is known about Medhātithi. Some scholars feel that he belonged to South India while others assert that he hailed from Kashmir. He seems to have been a deep scholar of Purvamimānsā system and quotes numerous writers of an earlier period such as Gautama, Āpastamba, Baudhāyana, Vasiṣtha, Parāśara, Bṛhaspati and others. He has drawn upon the Arthaśāstra of Kauṭilya in numerous places.
- He lived in 321-300 B. C.
- The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore