(Last Updated on : 11-07-2013)
Later Smritis do not differ completely from its old counterparts. Some of these Smritis have been the basis for many later commentaries. The Narada Smriti presents an older account of Manu's views than the Manu Smriti
it self though the claim is disproved by the contents. It subdivides titles of law into 132, 15 types of slaves, 21 ways of acquiring property, 5 sufferings, 11 classes of witnesses. The Brihaspati Smriti is exists in fragments though its character is clear. However it is more advanced in legal view compared to Narada Smriti. It develops the treatment of records; it approves the practice of widow burning. This belongs to the sixth or seventh century.
These however are of negligible importance as compared with the Yajnavalkya Smriti. The title recalls the great authority of the White Yajurveda. Some similarity has been traced to the Ptiraskara Grihyasutra and the Manava Grihyasutra. The Smriti refers to the Brhadaranyaka Upanishad
. The arrangement is better than the Manu smriti. The three chapters of about the same length handle rules of conduct, Acara
, law, Vyavahara, and penance. Yajnavalkya also reveals many traits of Manu
. Outlook is similar. He indulges in philosophical remarks on the fate of the soul. Embryology is a new subject that has been inspired from some medical treatise. There is also similarity to Manu though the elaboration is less. In metre also it conforms to the style of Manu.
Yajnavalkya formed the subject of a several important commentaries; the best known is the Mitaksara of Vijnanesvara. This was written in the south in the eleventh century. There is a list that mentions 152 Smritis. In many cases there are Laghu, Brhat or Vrddha forms of the same text or even same name given to different texts. On Paracara Smriti Madhava wrote in the fourteenth century an elaborate comment. There are various texts ascribed to Atri, Usanas, Apastamba, Daksa, Qankha, Likhita, Sarhvnrta and so on. However some authors have been mentioned in fragments. Pitamaha appears in Brihaspati as an authority on ordeals. Katyayana
and Vyasa agree with Narada and Brihaspati. The number of Smritis can be amplified from the epic and the Puranas that contain long sections. In one of the manuscript of the epic was found a Brihad Gautamasmriti.