I have great pleasure in introducing a work of sustained efforts and international merit-the Jaya-Samhita, i.e. the nucleus of the Mahabharata-which can be called the Ur-Mahabharata, of about 8,800 two-line verses extracted out of 78,675 slokas of the Mahabharata (including its supplement, the Harivamsa), on the principles of higher criticism. According to late Dr. V.S. Sukthankar, a Scandinavian Orientalist, Soren Sorenson, was the first one who found out a nucleus and extracted about 27,000 slokas in the first instance, Soren Sorenson went further into depth and reduced that number to about 7,000 to 8,000 slokas, as early as between 1883 and 1894 A.D. Sorenson died very young and, according to Dr. Sukthankar, no one knows what became of his work.
Prof. K. K. Shastree, Honorary Director of the Ahmedabad branch of the Gujarat Research Society, who is an experienced and reputed Sanskritist, undertook afresh the work of finding out the nucleus. Prof. Shastree spent years in independent study and succeeded in extracting a nucleus of about 8,800 two-line verse which are presented here in their original form.
As a result of devotion, deep scholarship and intense effort, Prof. Shastree has succeeded in extracting this text which is a contribution of immense value.
It is a matter of deep satisfaction that this extracted text has a well-linked narration which strictly follows the list of contents given in the 55th adhyaya of the Adi-parva. Thus Prof. Shastree has placed before us an authentic text of great merit.
I heartily congratulate the redactor, Prof. Shastree, for presenting such a masterly work to the oriental scholars who, I am sure, would find it most useful and interesting.
The Gujarat Research Society considers it an honour to publish this important work.
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