The Dharmashastra occupies a prominent place in the Sanskrit prominent place in the Sanskrit literature. It has always been a work of universal Authority. It has always served as a source book of Hindu jurisprudence. It has been a veritable storehouse of information for the social, cultural, political and religious aspects of ancient Indian society. It is the very essence of Hinduism. Its deeper study helps in the proper understanding of the Ancient Indian Culture.
The terms Dharma Shastra is generally applicable to both the Dharmashutras and the smrities. The word smrities is used in two senses. In wider sense it includes the whole ancient literature other than the Veda. But in the restricted sense smriti and Dharma Shastra are synonyms. Gautam and Vasistha speak of smriti as one of the sources of Dharma. The smrities came into existence to satisfy the demand of the society for new provisions in matters of Dharma, religious and secular behavior. The Dharma Shastras of the Hindus, are not one single book but consist of the Samhitas or Institutes of holy sages numbering twenty according to the list given by Yajnavalkya, These are namely, Manu, Atri, Vishnu, Harita, Yagnavalkya, Ushana, Angira, Yama, Apastamba, Samvarta, Katyayana, Brihaspati, Parasara, Vyasa, Sankha, Likhita, Daksha, Gautam, Satatapa and Vasistha samhitas respectively.
In this collective addition will give to the readers the complete text of all the twenty smrities, fully edited. The English translation is a literal one as fas as it could be attempted, keeping an eye to eye on its accuracy and literary excellence.