Dramatis Persone. Charudatta - A Brahmin Merchant of Ujjaini. Rohasena -His son. Maitreya -His friend and companion. Vardhamanaka - His servant. Plaka -King of Ujjayini. Samsthanaka -The King's brother-in-law. Sthavaraka - His servant. Samvahaka - A rambler who turns Buddhist monk. Mattura & Darduraka -Gamblers. Rebbila - A famous musician. Sarvilaka - A burglar. Aryaka - a herdsman who becomes king. Viraka & Chandanaka - Police officers. A Courtier and Friend of Samsthanaka A Judge Dhutadeve - Wife of Charudatta. Radanika - Charudatta's maid-servant. Vasantasena - A famous courtesan of Ujjaini and lover of Charudatta. Madanika - Maid-servant of Vasantasena. Mother of Vasanthasena. There lived in a Ujjayini a young man of breeding and refinement, named Charudatta, who was by profession a wealthy merchant buy by birth a high-souled Brahmin. By the qualities of large-heartedness, nobility and uprightness, as well as by his culture and good taste, he had own the admiration and respect of the whole city, but his princely liberality had in course of time reduced him to extreme poverty; for, never was a needy man turned from his door, and he had adorned the city of Ujjayini with mansions, cloisters, parks, temples, pools and fountains. Deserted by all in his adversity and disillusioned he would have adjured the world and sought the hermitage, but that his noble and faithful wife Dhutadevi, his little son Rohasena and his whole-hearted friend Maitreya had cheerfully shared his poverty and distress. Of his large train of retainers, only two remained in his old and decayed house, the maid Radanika and his personal servant Vardhamanaka. One night, after Charudatta had finished his evening devotions, he said to Maitreya: "Friend, I have made my offerings to the household deities. Will you now go and offer sacrifice to the Divine Mothers at the place where the four roads meet?" "Not I, indeed," relied Maitreya, "you have worshipped the gods, but have they been gracious to You? What is the use of worshipping?" "Speak not profanely", said Charudatta, "it is the duty of every householder." "No. I am not going", replied Maitreya doggedly, "you must send somebody else. Poor Brahmin that I am, everything goes wrong with me; it is like a reflection in the mirror, the right side becomes the left, the left becomes the right." At that hour of evening, even the king's highway was not sage, such was the state of law and order prevailing in the city! Courtesans, rogues, bawds, gamblers, thieves, political schemers and royal favourites were abroad; and how could a timid Brahmin like Maitreya go our alone? At last, on the assurance that Radanika would accompany him with alight, Maitreya opened the front door and came out. Suddenly the lamp went out. Near the door, under the cover of falling darkness, was standing for shelter the unfortunate Vasantasena, a famous courtesan of Ujjayini. She had putout the light with her skirt and entered, silently and unperceived, into the house. In confusion, Radanika waited, while Maitreya went back to re-light lamp. Who in Ujjayini did not know Vasantasena for her grace, dignity, wealth and beauty, and who, except a cowardly, ignorant and brutal wretch like the king's brother-in-law, Samsthanaka, did not honour her? Strange as it may seem, it was possible in that ancient society to be a courtesan and yet retain self respect. As in the Athens of Perikles, so in ancient India, the courtesan was not without accomplishments; she possessed wealth, beauty and power, as well as literary and artistic taste, and occupied an important position in social life. Men of wit, culture and rank did not disdain her society, and this contact probably saved her from degradation. All this, however, did not prevent the king's brother-in-law Samsthanaka, a man of the most depraved and despicable character, from attempting to win her person by cunning and gold. His position as the king's brother-in-law and his wealth made him believe that he could do whatever he liked; but Vasantasena had never been mercenary, and, as she was universally honoured, he did not dare use force. In spite of his association with courtiers of breeding and refinement, he had skill only in perfidy and deceit. All Ujjayini hated and feared him for his ignorant conceit and brutal lust, and it was no wonder that Vasantasena found his attention most unwelcome. That evening Vasantasena had been abroad in the street accompanied by her servants, who however had fallen behind. Taking this opportunity, Samsthanaka, with his profligate followers, had pursued her, and made the most degrading and insulting offers of love. Frightened and disgusted, she tried to repulse them, assuring them proudly that it was merit alone, and not brutal violence, which inspired a woman's love. In vain did she offer them her jewels and he ornaments to make them desist, and in vain did she attempt to fly from them like a timid deer. In the course of the pursuit, however, they came near the good merchant's house. Her profligate pursuers thus unintentionally befriended her by bringing her for refuge to the very door of the great Charudatta, of whom she had heard so much, whom she had once seen in the park where Kama's temple stood, and who was now destined to play such an important part in her life. Eluding Smasthanaka and his associates under cover of darkness, she slipped unperceived into the house: and Charudatta, mistaking her for the maid Radanika, bade her enter, Losing sight of her, Samsthanaka caught hold of the waiting Radanika by mistake, but Maitreya came up presently to the rescue, and reprimanded him severely for his reducess. The cowardly Samsthanaka was naturally afraid of Charudatta's eminent naturally afraid of Dharudatta's eminent virtues, but he would not go away without finding Vasantsena. His wise courtier, however, advised him to depart. "The hold a house" he said "you need a rein, and to hold an elephant, you require a chain. To hold a woman, you must use a heart, and if you have not one, it is wise to go away in peace". Reluctantly but with a great deal of bravado, Samsthanaka left, pronouncing a threat of revenge if Charudatta did not hand over Vasantasena to him. All this happened outside the house. Charudatta was sitting inside in the dark room when the frightened Vasantasena entered. Not knowing what had happened, and mistaking her for Radanika, he gave her his cloak to cover up little Rohasena lest the child be chilled by evening dews. Vasantasena, finding the garment scented with jasmine-flowers, said to herself: "His youth does not indeed show indifference!" Finding her still silent and motionless, Charudatta again bade her enter the inner apartments, but remembering her ignoble profession, she could only sigh to herself: "Alas, my misfortune gives me no admission inside." "Come now, Radanika, will you not even answer?" cried Charudatta in sadness and impatience, still overwhelmed by his own sense of poverty which made him think that even his maid was slighting him. But Maitreya and Radanika having come up in the meantime, he perceived his mistake and exclaimed: "Then who is this? I have degraded her by the touch of my garment," "Degraded!" repeated Basantasena to herself "no, exalted!" Charudatta was wondering who the half-veiled lady might be, like the waning moon half-hidden by the autumnal clouds: but the next moment he checked himself in his impertinent curiosity: "She must be another man's wife, not meet for me to gaze on her", Maitreya, who had learnt of her identity from Samsthanaka, soon enlightened him. "What, this is Vasantasent!" exclaimed Charudatta: and not being insensible to love, he sighed over his declining fortunes for his inability to give expression to the thoughts of love which arose spontaneously in him. "Let my desire", he said to himself, "sink suppressed in silence, like the wrath of a coward which he dares not utter." But with his innate gallantry, he felt he had done wrong in greeting the charming lady as a servant, and begged of her to pardon him for the unwitting offence done to her by his mistake. "It is I who have offended by this unseemly intrusion. I bow my head to seek your forgiveness", she replied. It was a case of love at first sight for both of them, but for the first time Vasantasena was really in love. Witty and wise, disillusioned and sophisticated, she had yet a heart of romance, and her love was true and deep even in a social position which made such a feeling difficult. Very sadly she realised that the woman who admitted the love of many men was false to them all. Much wealth and position she had achieved by an obligatory and hereditary calling, but her heart was truly against it, and it brought her no happiness. Her maid Madanika, brought up in the usual tradition, disapproved of her falling in love with a poor man. "But, lady," she protested, "it is said that Charudatta is very poor. "Hence do I love him more" replied her mistress. "A courtesan whose heart is fixed on a poor man is hardly to bee censured by the world." "Yet, lady." said Madanika, with mild remonstrance again, "do the bees, greedy for honey, swarm in the mango-tree after it has shed its blossoms " "Therefore are they called greedy wantons", replied Vasantasena. The breath of the new emotion, which had now come to her, quickened all her deeper and nobler instincts into a pervading flame, and burned to ashes her baser self. But, like a truly awakened woman, she was embarrassed in the presence of Charudatta at their first unexpected meeting and felt that she could tarry no longer. In order that this meeting should not be the last, she wanted some excuse to come back again. After a little thought, she said: "If truly I have found favour in your sight, sit, I should be glad to leave my jewels in your house. It was for the sake of these jewels that those scoundrels followed me." "But", replied Charudatta "this house is hardly suited for the trust." "You mistake, sir," she smiled in reply "treasures are entrusted to men, and not to house." What more could Charudatta Say? The jewels were left in trust. Charudatta then accompanied her through the dark streets and saw her safely home. Charudatta, in his prosperous days, had a servant, named Samvahaka, whose duty was to massage his master. After Charudatta's decline in fortune, Samvahaka's occupation was gone, and he took to desperate gambling. But luck was against him; and one day, which happened to be the very next day after the meeting of Charudatta and Vasantasena, he fled from the gambling house and concealed himself from his creditors in a deserted temple, only to be soon discovered by the master of the gambling house, Mathura and a gambler, both hardened and pitiless sinners, who demanded of him ten gold pieces which he had lost to them. An altercation ensued, ending in quarrel and violence. At this point, a clever rogue, Darduraka, who was passing by, appeared on the scene, and taking pity on the much harassed fellow-gambler Samvahaka, engaged the gambling master and his companion in an angry discussion, during which Samvahaka managed to escape into Vasantasena's house, which stood nearby, just at the moment when Vasantasena had been confessing to her maid Madanika her love for Charudatta. When she learned that Samvahaka had once served Charudatta, she received him with honour and compassion and paid his gambling debts. Overwhelmed by her kindness and full of self- pity, the grateful Samvahaka at last resolved to turn a Buddhist monk. The same night Charudatta and Maitreya went to a concert to listen to the charming songs of one Rebhila. Charudatta was by no means an austere or self-denying man, a mere paragon of virtue, but he was a perfect man of the world, who did not disdain gambling, nor shared his friend Maitreya's bias against the courtesan, and he loved literature, art and music. His great virtues were softened by the milk of human kindness. In spite of his slender means, his love of music made him go to the concert, which he enjoyed with keen appreciation. They came home after midnight, and, greatly tired, went to sleep. Vasantasena's treasures were still in the house; and Maitreya was charged, before he went to sleep, to keep the gem-casket safely by his side. After a while, a needy and skilful thief, named Sarvilaka, broke into the room, in which Charudatta and his friend were sleeping, by making a hole in the rickety wall. This Sarvilaka, a Grahmin by birth and a man of some education, was a friend of Darduraka, like whom he had turned into a clever and daring man about town. He had, in the meantime, fallen in love with Vasantasena's maid Madanika and wanted to marry her. Reduced to poverty and reckless life, he had at last resolved to acquire by theft the house of the poor Brahmin, for whom even a low-down thief like him cherished great respect. In the morning, Charudatta and his friend woke to find the casket and the thief gone. It affected the good merchant deeply, inasmuch as it affected his honour, for who would now believe the truth about the theft? Powerless poverty was doomed to wake suspicion. Radanika, who had first detected the theft, went to inform Charudatta's wife of the disaster, but assured her mistress that both her master and his friend were unhurt, and that only the ornaments left by the courtesan had been stolen. "Girl," replied the wife sadly, "how` can you say that my lord is uninjured? Better he were injured in body than in character, For, now the people of Ujjayini will say that my lord himself committed the crime because of his poverty." To save her husband's honour, the good wife, a noble and gentle lady worthy of her husband, sent him her pearl necklace which she had received from her mother's house. When Charudatta was told of this, he exclaimed with humbled pride: "What, my wife takes pity on me? Alas, now I am poor indeed! "But if his change of fortune had made him bitter, it had not debased his mind; it had only taught him to take things at their right value. Soon he realised the nobility which prompted his wife's offer, and said to Maitreya; "But no, I am not poor; for I have a wife whose love outlasts my wealthy days; in thee I have a friend who is faithful to me through good and evil; and I have truth and honour which nought can take away. Maitreya, take the necklace, and go to Vasantasena. Tell her in my name that we have gambled away the gem casket, forgetting it was not our own, and that we trust she will accept this necklace in its place." But the sagacious Maitreya, with his dog like faithfulness, was uneasy and suspicious. He took his friend's love for Vasantasena for a degrading infatuation and his friend's regard for honour with respect to a courtesan for a foolish act. "What!" he said in surprise "you must not give away this necklace, the pride of the our seas, for that cheap thing left by the courtesan:, "Not so, my friend replied Charudatta, "she showed her trust in leaving with us he treasure. Such a faith cannot be overvalued," Scrupulous in returning Vasantasena's pledge, he could not accept his friend's worldly-wise advice; and Maitreya had at last to depart with the necklace to Vasantasena. Early next morning, Sarvilaka came to Vasantasena’s house to but Madanika's freedom with the stolen casket. On Madanika's enquiry as to how a poor man like him could come by the gems, he had to confess to her the facts concerning the theft of the casket. Madanika was horrified. "Oh, Sarvilaka," she said" for a mere nothing- for a woman-you have risked two things. "What things?" asked Sarvilaka, somewhat puzzled. "Your life and your character," replied the honest girl. When he showed her the jewels, she could recognise them as those which her mistress had left at Charudatta's place. Sarvilaka now felt truly ashamed, but he could not, even if he desired, restore the gams to the good man, for that act would be inconsistent with prudence. On Madanika's advice, he then pretended to be a servant of Charudatta's and sought to restore the jewels to Vasantasena. But, in the meantime, coming in search of Madanika, Vasantasena had been an unwilling listener to the whole conversation. Her own recent experience of love and her innate nobility of character made her feel for the poor lovers, and appreciate the daring of the man and the honesty of the maid. She accepted the casket without telling them anything, but as Sarilaka was turning to leave, she said to him: "Sir, will you undertake a return commission of mine?". Savilaka naturally hesitated, for he could not, in the circumstances, carry back any message to Charudatta. "And this commission is-?"he faltered. "You will be good enough to accept Madanika" replied Vasantasena quietly to the astonished man. "Madam, I do not understand," he faltered again. "But I do," replied Vasantasena, "Charudatta told me that I was to give Madanika to the man who should return these jewels. You are therefore to understand that he makes you a present of her." "Ah, she sees through me," said Sarilvka to himself, but he blessed Charudatta's name and was grateful to her for making Madanika a freed woman. They left with happiness in their hearts, but on the way they received hints of an impending political revolution. Those were days of stirring deeds, and the private affairs of the lovers became curiously linked with a political intrigue which involved the city and the kingdom. King Palaka had been despite and cruel, and the wanton acts of his brother-in-law Samsthanaka had also made the people discontented. A soothsayer had declared that a young herdsman, named Aryaka was to become king. Believing in this prophecy and alarmed thereat, king Palaka had taken the innocent herdsman from his hamlet and thrown him into prison. This Aryaka happened to be a friend of Sarvilaka's; and as soon as Sarvilaka left Vasantasena's house with Madanika, this news reached him. In spite of poor Madanika's entreaties, he leapt out of the bullock-cart which was carrying them, directing his servant to reach his newly-made bride to the house of his friend Rebhila. Sarvilaka departed, vowing not only to release his friend Aryaka but also to hasten the revolution of place Aryaka on the throne. In the meantime, Maitreya came to Vsantasena's place to hand over the pearl necklace as a recompense for the gem casket lost by Charudatta. Unaware of the circumstance that Sarvilaka had in the meantime brought back the casket, strangely, to its real owner, Maitreya delivered his message. Much amused and pleased, Vasantasena said to herself: "It was stolen by a thief, and he is so proud that he says he gambled it away. I love him for that." She accepted the necklace with pleasure, in order to use it as a pretext to see Charudattaonce more, and said to Maitreya: "Sir, pray tell the worthy gambler Charudatta in my name that I shall pay him a visit this evening." The suspicious Maitreya thought that the greedy courtesan was not satisfied with the pearl necklace and wanted to get more out of Charudatta in redemption of the pledge. The same evening, during a heavy storm, Vasantasena reached Charudatta's house. She brought with her the gem-casket, and after discovering it and explaining how she had come by it, she gently rebuked him for the distrust shown of her by sending the pearl necklace instead. The storm and rain increasing in violence in the meantime, she was compelled to spend the night at Charudatta's house. Charudatta had now realised the nobility of her character, her generosity, and the depth and truth of her love, and he came to love her in return with an equally deep and tender affection. The next morning, when the maid came to wake her up, it appeared all so strange to Vasantasena herself. She could hardly believe that she, an outcast of society, had been able to win the love of the great Charudatta, the ornament of Ujjayini, and asked half-incredulously of the amid if all that were true. "What! did I find may way into his inner apartments?," she enquired of the maid, "Not only that," replied the amid "but into everyone's heart." But Vasantasena was still afraid lest she had been a source of trouble to Charudatta. "I fear his household is vexed," she asked with deep concern. "They will be vexed," replied the maid "only when-" "When?" she interrupted anxiously. "When you will depart", replied the maid, Vasantasena was still wearing the pearl necklace which Charudatta had given her. Now she took it off, and sent it through the maid to Charudatta's wife with the message: "Worthy Charudatta's virtues have won me, made me his slave, and therefore your slave also. So let this necklace be the ornament of your neck, to which it rightly belongs." But the dignified wife returned the necklace, saying that it was not proper for her to take the necklace with which her husband had favoured Vasantasena in his affection, and that the only ornament she valued was her husband. Nevertheless, both Charudatta and his wife, as well as his whole household, inclusive of the suspicious but well- meaning Maitreys, had now recognised the truth and pity of her great love and realised how much it would mean to her if her love were legalised. Vasantasena now met for the first time Charudatta's little son, Rohasena. She found the child peevish, because he had now only a little clay cart to play with, instead of finer toys. A great affection and pity overwhelmed her heart, and she said to herself: "To think that this little child has to suffer because others are wealthy! Ah, might Fate, the destinies of men, uncertain as the water-drops which fall upon a lotus-leaf, seen to thee but playthings!" She was fascinated by the lovely face of the petulant child, which was very like his father's and stretched our her arms in than great hunger for motherhood which had been denied to her: "Come, my little son, embrace me". Naturally suspicious, the child asked of his maid: "Who is she, Radanika?" Vasantasena replied coaxingly: "A slave of your father's, purchased by his merits", which statement Radanika hastened to modify tactfully by saying, "This lady is your mother, child." "Away," replied the child, "you tell me untruth, Radanika. How can she be my mother when she wears such fine things?" "My child", said Vasantasena, ashamed and in tears, "your innocent lips can say terrible things! "She took off her ornaments and said tearfully: "Now I become your mother. You take these trinkets and have a gold cart made for you." "Go away." said the child again, "I will not take them, you cry at parting with them." Wiping away her tears and smiling, she filled the toy clay cart with her jewels and said: "I weep no more. Go, darling, and play. There! you must have a little gold cart to play with. "Vasantasena's love had now made her realise the emptiness of richness and the fulness of a pure and tender affection. Vardhamanaka now came and informed Vasantasena that he was waiting at the side door with a covered cart to take her to the old flower-garden, named Puspakaranadaka, where Charudatta, who had left early in the morning, was waiting for her, While Vasantasena was getting ready, Vardhamanaka went back with his cart to fetch some cushions which he had forgotten. In the meantime, a comedy of errors happened, which nearly ended in tragedy. Samsthanaka's servant Sthavaraka had been directed by the master to take a bullock-cart to him at the same old garden, which was the property of the king's brother-in-law. The highway having been blocked by villagers wagons, Sthavaraka had stopped his cart at the side-door of Charudatta's orchard and had gone for a moment to put his shoulder to the wheel of another cart which had got stuck in the mud. Finding Sthavaraka's cart at the side-door, Vasantasena entered it without knowing: and without knowing also Sthavaraka, coming back, drove it on, thus cruel fate conspiring to put Vasantasena once more into the hands of Samsthanaka. Unaware of what happened, Vardhamanaka came back with Charudatta's cart and waited at the side-door. Soon he heard some one entering the covered cart with the tinkling of anklet-rings, and thinking that it was Vasantasena he also drove on towards the garden where Charudatta was waiting. But it was Aryaka who had surreptitiously entered the cart. With the help of his good friend Sarvilake, the young herdsman, who had been imprisoned by the king Palaka, had just broken jail, killed the jailer, half broken his fetters, escaped and run away. There was treat excitement in the city over the prisoner's escape, and police constables were running about everywhere in search of him. He managed to elude them all and concealed himself near the side-door of Charudatta's house. Finding Vardhamanaka's empty cart presently driving up, he sought in it a temporary hiding-place, his half-broken prison- chains having caused the tinkling sound which deceived Vardhamanaka. As Vardhamanaka was getting up his bullocks to go, two police officers, in search of Aryaka, walked up and Stopped the cart of the road-side. On being informed that it was Charudatta's cart conveying Vasantasena to the Puspakaranadaka garden, one of the officers Chandanaka would let it pass, Charudatta's name acting as a magic charm; but the other officers Viraka became suspicious and would not let the cart go without inspection. After some discussion, Chandanaka, agreeing to inspection, entered the cart and looked about. Aryaka immediately threw himself on his mercy, and Chandanaka, a softer-hearted man, agreed to protect him. But Chandanaka's report after inspection that all was well could not convince Viraka. To save his protege in the cart, to whom he and given his word, Chandanaka contrived an angry discussion and quarrel, which ended in his maltreating his brother officer and allowing Aryaka to escape in Charudatta's cart. Now that he had made an enemy of Vuraja, the Chief Constable and kings favourite, Chandanaka made up his mind to throw in his lot with the revolutionaries, headed by Sarvilaka. In the meantime, Vardhamanaka drove up the cart, in which Aryaka lay hidden, to the park where Charudatta was awaiting Vasantasena impatiently. To their amazement, Maitreya and Charudatta discovered the Fugitive in the cart; but as Aryaka related his story and sought his protection, Charudatta removed his fetters, promised him friendship, lent him the cart to escape, and left the park immediately lest he should arouse the suspicion of royal officers. Samsthanaka's servant, on the other hand, drove up to another part of the same park his master's cart which Vasantasena had entered by mistake. To his amazement, Samsthanaka's courtier, who had gone forward, discovered Vasantasena sitting happy in the cart, and at first thought that she had come of her own accord to favour the king’s brother-in-law. But when he learned of her mistake concerning the cart, he realised her peril and tried to shield and save her from the brutal and ignorant Samsthanaka. Samsthanaka himself was at first greatly flattered that Vasantasena should herself come and visit him; but very soon Sthavaraka disillusioned him by relating the story of the mistake, and Vasantasena in her turn spurned him with her foot in disgust, thereby rousing his fierce anger. His sense of his own importance was outraged by Vasantasena's scornful repulse; and, passion-blind, he threatened to kill her for despising his proposition and for kicking him with her foot. But both Sthavaraka and the courtier refused to aid and abet him in his cowardly and brutal design of murdering in cold blood an innocent and helpless woman. Sthavaraka was a simple and God-fearing man who was not easy to win over. The courtier was a man of good taste and breeding who, despite his loose life and his dependence on his patron, did his best to check Samsthanaka's intended violence. Very artfully the cunning scoundrel pretended to grow calm, managed to get rid of his followers by deceit, and then seizing Vasantasena alone, began to persecute her again with his shameful proposals. She repulsed him with great spirit and with a fearlessness born of her new love of Charudatta. When Samsthanaka in his anger taunted her as the inamorata of a beggarly Brahmin, she was not ashamedbut retorted with perfect courage: "Delightful, words! Pary proceed, for you speak my praise." "Just let that son of a slave rescue you now," said Samsthanaka with a sneer, to which she replied with great coolness: "He would have rescued me if he were here." Growing furious, Samsthanaka took her by the throat; she would not scream for help, for it would be a shame that Vasantasena's helpless cry should be heard loudly outside, but she would remember her beloved Charudatta and bless his name. "What, still dost thou repeat that rascal's name?" snarled Samsthanaka, blinded by rage, as he strangled her; but on the verge of imminent death, the name of Charudutta was still on her lips, and she murmured in a struggling tone: " My homage be to Charudatta! " When Sthavaraka and the courtier returned, Samsthanaka tried to deceive them; but, they soon discovered the horrible facts, he offered bribes to the courtier and then tried to lay the deed to his charge. Disgusted and horrified, the courtier cursed him: and finding that it would be folly to remain there any longer, he also made up his mind to leave his patron and join the conspirators, Sarvilaka, Chandanaka and the rest. The poor Sthavaraka was put in irons on the palace-tower by his wicked master. To convert up his own guilt and to complete his mean revenge on Chharudatta, Samsthanaka now formed the plan of going to court at once and lodging a complaint that the merchant Charudatta had enticed Basantasena into the old park Puspakarandaka and strangled her there for her money. The next day the court sat for the trial,and Cahrudatta, who could not yet believe that such a thing could happen, was summoned to answer the terrible accusation of Samsthanaka. In the course of the trial, it appeared from the evidence of Vasantasena's mother (who, however, refused to bear witness against Charudatta) that Vasantasena had spent the night of the storm at Charudatta's house; while Viraka, who had come to court to testify to the escape of Aryaka and to lodge his complaint against Chandanaka, gave evidence that she had left Charudatta's house the next morning in Charudatta's cart to meet the latter at the part. It was also proved that there had been a struggle at the park, which apparently ended in the murder of a woman, for the body of a woman, torn by wild beasts, was found there. The judge, a sympathetic man, was still reluctant to believe that stain of any kind could attach to Charudatta's reputation; for it was extraordinary that he, whose liberality was well known throughout Ujjayini and whose sense of honour once made him send to Vasantasena a necklace of pearls in place of stolen jewels, should now for a mere trifle-for her money - murder a hopeless woman whom he loved. Was it possible that Charudatta was the man who could repay a woman's love with blood? But at this moment some thing happened which turned the circumstantial evidence still more against Charudatta. Materya had been commissioned by Charudatta to go to Vasantasena's house and return the jewels which she in her affection had given to Rohasena for the mking of a gold cart. But on the way to her house, Maitreys heard the alarming news that Cgarydatta had been summoned to court. Without any delay he rushed into the court-room, and on being informed of the baseless charge against his dear friend, he was so indignant that he attacked the false accuser angrily with his staff, calling Samsthanaka by all the names that he deserved. During the scuffle which ensued, the jewels which Maitreya had been carrying on his person fell to the ground. In view of Charudatta's poverty and in the absence of satisfactory explanation of Maitreya's possession of the jewels, the incident seemed to deceive the judge and establish a motive for the crime. Charudatta was condemned to ignominious death by king Palaka, although the judge recommended him, according to the law, for mercy. In his life Charudatta had already realised that late played with men as buckets at the well, one rose as another fell. Aware of the vanity of all things, he could not value life over-highly; but he valued his honour more than his life. He received the sentence of death with equanimity, more especially as the loss of Vasantasena had now made him lose his new interest in life. But he was overwhelmed in so far as the condemnation affected his honour as a man for having murdered a woman (and the cruel irony of it, a woman whom he deeply loved) and also that he should leave a heritage of shame to the little son to whom he was so greatly devoted. That such a stain should attach to his character was unbearable to him, but he was powerless against cruel fate. When everything conspired to make appearances go against him, he lost all interest in the trial and hardly made any attempt to defend himself against the hateful charges, which he emphatically denied but which he could not which he could not rebut. The headsman, two sympathetic souls who regretted the duty they had to perform, led Charudatta to the place of execution through the city-streets and proclaimed as was the custom, his guilt with the beat of drum. Charudatta was still cherished with affection, and as the much-hated Samasthanaka was his accuser, popular sympathy was with him. A large crowd followed him as he was led through the streets. Sthavaraka, Who had been confined and enchained by his master Samsthanaka in his palace-tower heard the shouts and the proclamation below, as the crowd passed along the street in front of Samsthanaka's palace. That innocent Charudatta should be condemned to death for another's crime through the perfidy of his inhuman master became unbearable to him. He leapt down through an open window, broke his fetters in his excitement and rushed out to bear witness to Charudatta's innocence by revealing the truth and denouncing Samsthanaka for his crime. About the same time, Samsthanaka, coming our of his house to gloat over the downfall of Charudatta, was taken aback at the sight of Sthavaraka; but recovering himself quickly, he denounced Sthavaraka's words as lies invented out of spiteful motive against his master who had imprisoned him for the theft of some ornaments. A disgraced slave could convince nobody, and the cunning displayed by his master made light of his words. No escape now seemed possible for Charudatta, who prepared himself for certain death after he had taken his last leave of Maiterya and his little son. Samsthanaka now urged the executioners to finish their work quickly, Suddenly, in great agitation appeared on the scene a Buddhish monk, accompanied by a by, shouting with uplifted hands-" Good gentlemen, hold, hold!" Everyone looked up with surprise and found with great delight that it was Samvahaka, who had turned a Buddhist monk, and with him Vasantasena herself, saying: "God gentlemen, I am the stretch for whose sake Charudatta was condemned to death." How was it that Vasantasena could come back to life and appear on the scene at the last moment? When Samsthanaka pitilessly strangled her in the garden, she only lost consciousness and fell down motionless. After Samsthanaka had left her for dead covering up her body with dry leaves, Charudatta's old servant Samvahaka, whom Vasantasena had released from gambling debts and who had in the meantime turned a Buddhist monk, came into the garden to wash his rags in the pool there. By chance he came near the spot where the body of Vasantasena had been buried in leaves, and sat down to dry his rags. Suddenly he heard a sigh proceeding from the heap of leaves and some movements, for Vasantasena had now begin to recover consciousness and move her limbs. Coming to the spot, Samvahaka discovered and recognised her, greatly delighted to find that it was Vasantasena, still alive, to whom he once owed his freedom. With great care he revived her and conducted her to a monastery nearby. After hearing her story, he was conducting her next day to Charudatta's house; but on the way they saw the large crowd, following Charudatta, from a distance and heard the proclamation. "Sister in Buddha" said Samvahaka, addressing her. "Charudattais being led to his death for murdering you." "For my wretched sake!" replied Vasantasena in terror, "Quick, quick, oh lead me there." They rushed forward just in time to save Charudatta from his imminent death. In the meantime, the revolution started by Sarvilaka and his friends had succeeded. They had stormed the place, killed the wanton and cruel king Palaka and placed their friend Aryaka, the fugitive herdsman whom Charudatta once befriended, on the throne. As soon as they had heard of Charudatta's distress Sarvilaka hastened with his men to the place of execution, reaching there almost immediately after Vasantasena had made hr appearance. He brought the good tidings of the overthrow of Palaka's tyrannical rule, and a message from the new king Aryaka, who had not forgotten Charudatta's Friendly act, that the king in grateful remembrance, had rewarded him with the principality of Kushavati on the bank of the Vena and had bestowed on Vasantasena the title of wedded wife, which made her free of her profession. The monk Samvahaka was rewarded by being appointed superior over the Buddhist monasteries of the realm. The crowd now dragged before Charudatta the wretched and grovelling Samsthanaka, Who was mean enough to bet piteously for the life he had forfeited, and shouted for his death sentence; but he was magnanimously pardoned by the man whom he once sought to injure most grievously.