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May 7th

Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
उष्ट्राणं च विवाहेषु गीतं गायन्ति गर्दभाः
परस्परं प्रशंसन्ति अहो रूपमहो ध्वनिः

- समयोचितपद्यमालिका

uShTraaNaM cha vivaaheShu gItaM gaayanti gardabhaaH
parasparaM prashaMsanti aho rUpamaho dhvaniH
- samayochitapadyamaalikaa

Meaning of the subhAShita:
In the wedding of camels, donkeys sing the song. They praise each other, 'what a form!', 'what a voice!'

Camel is an animal who is not particularly popular for his grace and form. Similarly, a donkey is an animal whose braying is not exactly famous for melody. But the scene is of the wedding of camels where the donkeys are singing in merry! Like that is not enough, they are praising each other for their beauty and tone :-).

The scenario is concocted as an example for false praise. Just because one praises, it does not warrant the person praised to let it get to his head. Just because the camels thought that the donkeys sang wonderfully, it is not true in reality.

At the same time, only the finest can recognize finesse. A donkey isn't really the best person to identify beauty.

None are more taken by flattery than the proud, who wish to be the best but are not. Beware of flatterers and watch your own reactions to such fawning, eyewash compliments!

pada vigrahaH:
उष्ट्राणं च विवाहेषु गीतं गायन्ति गर्दभाः
uShTraaNaM cha vivaaheShu gItaM gaayanti gardabhaaH

परस्परं प्रशंसन्ति अहो रूपम् अहो ध्वनिः
parasparaM prashamsanti aho rUpam aho dhvaniH


  1. Isnt it "Lagneshu" in place of "Vivaaheshu"?

  2. Or rather what I had read, if I remember correctly was

    Ushtranaam cha grihe Lagnam, garddabhaah shaantipathakkaah

    Parasparam prashansantiAhoo Rupam, Aho Dhwani!!

    Pl claarify which is correct.

    "Vivaaheshu" is very Unsanskrit.
    Similarly, "Gitam Gayanti" is very Unsanskrit.


    1. The version you have referred is nice too!
      In subhaaShitas, it is not uncommon to see different versions that were attributed to different times in history.
      The particular words may not be used in classic samskRutam, but more in the recent times.
      The above version is from a modern collection. Hence, neither is wrong. Hope that helps.