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interesting to note their incidence, chiefly, I think, round some old fort, say Bijapur, or Morasa, or Janjira, which was once a rallying point for their armies, and where the present Moslems are often descendants of the old sepoys. The great Mahomedan patch of conversion in Broach has probably some single lost historical explanation.




(Read on 27th August 1920. )

The study of folk-songs, both from an ethnographical and a philological point of view, is not only highly important but is also fraught with great interest. If we study these songs from an ethnographical point of view, we can catch therefrom glimpses of the inner life of the people among whom these fragments of poetry are current. For it has been rightly said that "the very heart of a people is laid bare in its songs and says." We are also enabled thereby to obtain a good deal of information about many a curious custom and quaint superstition prevalent among the people in question.

Then again, if we study these folk-songs from a philological point of view, we come across many interesting dialect-words, colloquial phrases and turns of expression which are not to be found in the written and printed literature of the people by whom these songs are sung.

It is our intention, therefore, to publish in this paper the first instalment of a collection of Hindi folk-songs which are current in the district of Saran in North Bihār and which, so far as our knowledge goes, does not appear to have been printed and translated into English before.

An additional interest attaches to these folk-songs from North Bihār by reason of the fact that they are the compositions of womenfolk most of whom are illiterate. They are full of pathos and humour and, sometimes, contain passages of considerable beauty and merit. Take, for instance, the following folk-song No. III, of which the lines 25 to 29 display florid imagery.

This first instalment consists of 8 folk-sorgs which may be elassified into (1) Jatsāri or "the Hand-mill-Grinder's Song ;" (2) Jeonāra or “ the Song sung at the Time of Dinner ;” (3) Jhumara or “ Love-Songs ;” and (4) Bhairavi or “ the MorningSong."

The Jatsāris are songs which are sung by women while grinding corn with the traditional hand-mill. Of these hand-millgrinders' songs, one specimen is given below :--

(१) जतसारी ।

१. पारे केकर बरी बरी बांखीया ।

२. केकर लामी लामी केश ।

३. आरे केकर पीचा परदेशीचा ।

४. के इए झारेला लामी केश ॥

५. सीता के बरी बरी गांखीया ।
६. सीताके लामी लामी केश ।
७. सीताके पीना परदेशी ।
८. सीता फारेला लामी केश ॥
९. केकर कोरा पइशी सुतबो ।
१०. केकरा से कहबो दील्के बात ।
१९. शुनहु शुनहु सीता भडजी |
१२. शुन भडजी बचन हमार ||
१३. शाशुका कोरा पइशी सुतीहो ।
१४. गोतनीको कहीहो दीनके बात ।
१५. राम बीसरलो ना जाय ||

१६. शुनए शुन बबुआ लछमन ।

१७. शुन बबुचा बचन हमार |

१८. चारे भागी लगइबो सासुका कोरवा ।
१९. बजर परो दीनके बात ।
२०. राम बीसरलो ना जास ॥

२१. नए शुन बबुषा लछमन ।
२२. शुन बबुचा बचन हमार |
२३. चारे अम्माका कोरा पइथ सोतबो ।
२४. भडजीसे कहबो दील के बात ।

२५. राम बीसरलो ना जास ॥




1. 0 (my) friend ! whose eyes are large and big ?

2. Whose hair is long and flowing ?

3. 0 (my friend)! whose sweetheart has gone to a foreign country?

4. Who combs this long hair ?

5. Sita's eyes (are) large and big.

6. Sītā's hair (is) long and flowing.

7. Sita's sweetheart has gone to a foreign country.

8. Sita combs (her) long hair.

9. Upon whose lap will you enter and lie down ?

10. To whom will you tell (your) heart's words ?

ll. (0 my) brother's wife Sītā, hear (me), hear (me).

12. ( 0 my) brother's wife ! hear my words.

13. ( You) should enter and lie down upon the lap of (your) mother-in-law.

14. (You ) should tell (your) heart's words to (your) husband's brother's wife.

15. I cannot cannot forget (my husband) Rāma; 16. (0 my) boy Lachhmana! hear (me), hear (me).

17. (O my) boy (Lachhmana ) ! hear my words.


O (my friend ) ! (I), shall set fire to (my) mother-in-law's

19. May the thunderbolt fall upon (my) heart's words.
20. I cannot cannot forget (my husband) Rāma.
21. ( 0 my ) boy Lachhmana ! hear (me), hear (me ).
22. ( 0 my ) boy ( Iachhmana ) ! hear my words.

23. O (my friend ) ! (I) shall enter and lie down upon the lap of (my) mother-in-law (lit. mother).

24. (I) shall tell (my) heart's words to (my) brother's wife. 25. I cannot-cannot forget Rāma.

The Jeonara songs are those which are sung by the womenfolk of a family when a samdhi (or the father-in-law of a daughter of that family) or a son-in-law of that family who has come as a guest of that family, sits down to partake of the dinner served out to him. These songs embody a good deal of abusive language levelled at the guests.

Of these Jeonāra songs, two specimens are given below :—

(२) जेवनार |

१. रघुनाथ कुमरनीके चरनकमल बनीहारी ।

२. जदुनन्दनके गारी गावो ।

३. जदुवंशी के गारी सुनावो ॥

४. बीरजमोहना बीहारीके गारी | ॥

५. भले भांती आटारी वीधीने चुनी हाथ सवारी |
६. हो जदुनन्दनके रउरा चांगन पाव सीधारी ।
७. मथीलापती चरनपखारी ॥

८. हो जदुनंदनके गारी गावो ।

९. की सनन्दना बीहारीके गारी ||

१०. गोद लेइ भवन बइठावो बतीमध रतन केरे ।

११. पीरहा ने वही बइठले हीरा हो ।

१२. जदुनन्दनके गारी जदुबंशी के गारी सुनावो ॥

१३. बीरखभान मोहनाजी के गारी ||

१४. उजे जेवना परोसनो सवारी |

१५. रतन जरावके थारी हो ॥

१६. नदुनन्दनके गारी जदुबंशीके गारी सुनायो ।॥ १७. उजे दाल भात साक बो तरकारी ।

१८. जेवही कीसन मुरारी हो ।

१९. जदुनन्दन के गारी जदुबंशी के गारी सुनावो || २०. उजे जेवेले बइठे बीहारी ।

२१. सखी सब सुनावेने गारी हो ॥

२२. जदुनन्दनके गारी गावो ।

२३. परमु भइत्रा तुम्हारे जसोदा बासुदेव संग सीधारी हो ।
२४. जदुनन्दन के गारी जदुबंशी के गारी सुनावो | ॥
२५. परभु बहीना तुम्हारे सहोदर भारजुन संग सीधारी हो ।
२६. जदुनन्दनके गारी जदुबंशीके गारी सुनावो ||

२७. रघुनाथ कुमरजीके चरन कमल बलीहारी ।
२८. जदुनन्दनके गारी गावो ॥

२९. पाचवत बेर दीहीना बीरा ।

३०. भाखीर परभु जात हीरा हो ||

३१. जदुनन्दन के गारी जदुबंशी के गारी सुनावो || ३२. जब सत्जन चले तइचारी |

३३. सुर सामके बनीहारी हो ।

३४. जदुबंशी के गारी सुनावो ।

३५. बीरखभान मोहनाजी के गारी ॥




1. I) sing the praises of the lotus-feet of Prince Raghu

nāthaji (Rāmachandra).

2. Sing the song of abuse of Jadunandana (Krishna),

3. Abuse Jadubansi (Krishna).

4. (Sing) the “song of abuse " of Birjmohanābihāri (Krishna).

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