The Ananga Ranga (Stage of Love)

Translated by Sir Richard F. Burton [1885]

The Ananga Ranga is an Indian sex manual written in the 15th century by Kalyana Malla.  Building upon the Kama Sutra, the poet aimed to educate specifically at preventing the separation of a husband and wife.


"Men, it is true, marry for the sake of undisturbed congress, as well as for love and comfort, and often they obtain handsome and attractive wives. But they do not give them plenary contentment, nor do they themselves thoroughly enjoy their charms. The reason of which is, that they are purely ignorant of the Scripture of Cupid, the Kama Shastra; and, despising the difference between the several kinds of women, they regard them only in an animal point of view. Such men must be looked upon as foolish and unintelligent; and this book is composed with the object of preventing lives and loves being wasted in similar manner, and the benefits to be derived from its study "





Of the Four Orders of Women.

First, let it be understood, that women must be divided into four classes of temperament. These are:--

1. Padmini

2. Chatrini;

3. Shankhini; and

4. Hastini.

The same correspond with the four different phases of Moksha, or Release from further Transmigration. The first is Sayujyata, or absorption into the essence of the Deity; the second is Samipyata, nearness to the Deity, the being born in the Divine Presence; the third is Sarupata, or resemblance to the Deity in limbs and material body; the fourth and last is Salokata, or residence in the heaven of some especial god.

For the name of woman is Nari, which, being interpreted, means "No A'ri", or foe; and such is Moksha, or absorption, because all love it and it loves all mankind.

Padmini, then, means Sayujyata, also called Khadgini-Moksha (Sword-release), the absorption of man into the Narayan (godhead), who lives in the Khshirabdi, or Milk-sea, one of the Seven Oceans, and from whose naval sprang the Padma, or Lotus-flower.

Chitrini is Samipyata-Moksha, like those who, having been incarnated as gods, perform manifold and wonderful works. Shankhini is Sarupata-Moksha, even as the man who takes the form of Vishnu, bears upon his body the Shankha (conch shell), the Chakra or discus, and other emblems of that god. The Hastini is Salokata-Moksha, for she is what residence in Vishnu's heaven is to those of the fourth class who have attributes and properties, shape and form, hands and feet.


Personal Peculiarities of the Four Classes.

And now learn ye by these words to distinguish from one another the four orders of woman-kind.

She in whom the following signs and symptoms appear, is called Padmini, or Lotus-woman. 1 Her face is pleasing as the full moon; her body, well clothed with flesh., is soft as the Shiras 2 or mustard-flower; her skin

is fine, tender and fair as the yellow lotus, never dark-coloured, though resembling, in the effervescence and purple light of her youth, the cloud about to burst. Her eyes are bright and beautiful as the orbs of the fawn, well-cut, and with reddish corners. Her bosom is hard, full and high; her neck is goodly shaped as the conch-shell, so delicate that the saliva can be seen through it; her nose is straight and lovely, and three folds of wrinkles cross her middle, about the umbilical region. Her Yoni 3 resembles the open lotus-bud, and her Love-seed (Kama-salila, the water of life) 4 is perfumed like the lily which has newly burst. She walks with swanlike gait, and her voice is low and musical as the note of the Kokila-bird 5; she delights in white raiment, in fine jewels, and in rich dresses. She cats little, sleeps lightly and, being as respectable and religious as she is clever and courteous she is ever anxious to worship the gods, and to enjoy the conversation of Brahmans. Such, then, is the Padmini, or Lotus-woman.

The Chitrini, or Art-woman 6, is of the middle size, neither short nor tall, with bee-black hair, thin, round, shell-like neck; tender body; waist lean-girthed as the lion's; hard, full breasts; well-turned thighs and heavily made hips. The hair is thin about the Yoni, the Mons Veneris being soft, raised and round. The Kama-salila

(love seed) is hot, and has the perfume of honey, producing from its abundance a sound during the venereal rite. Her eyes roll, and her walk is coquettish, like the swing of an elephant, whilst her voice is that of the peacock 7. She is fond of pleasure and variety; she delights in singing and in every kind of accomplishment, especially the arts manual; her carnal desires, are not strong, and she loves her "pets", parrots, Mainas and other birds. Such is the Chitrini, or Art-woman.

The Shankhini 8, or Conch-woman, is of bilious tempermament, her skin being always hot and tawny, or dark yellow-brown; her body is large, or waist thick, and her breasts small; her head, hands, and feet are thin and long, and she looks out of the corners of her eyes. Her Yoni is ever moist with Kama-salila, which is distinctly salt, and the cleft is covered with thick hair. Her voice is hoarse and harsh, of the bass or contralto type; her gait is precipitate; she eats with moderation and she delights in clothes, flowers and ornaments of red colour. She is subject to fits of amorous passion, which make her head hot and her brain confused 9, and at the moment of enjoyment, she thrusts her nails into her husband's flesh. She is of choleric constitution, hard-hearted, insolent and vicious; irascible, rude and ever addicted to finding fault. Such is the Shankhini, or Conch-woman.

The Hastini is short of stature; she has a stout, coarse body, and her skin, if fair, is of a dead white; her hair is tawny, her lips are large; her voice is harsh, choked, and throaty (voix de gorge) and her neck is bent. Her gait is slow, and she walks in a slouching manner; often the toes of one foot are crooked. Her Kama-salila has the savour of the juice which flows in the spring from the elephant's temples. She is tardy in the Art of Love, and can be satisfied only by prolonged congress, in fact, the longer the better, but it will never suffice her. She is gluttonous, shameless, and irascible. Such is the Hastini, or elephant-woman. 10


The days of greatest enjoyment for the Four Classes

Having thus laid down the four classes of womankind, Kalyana Malla, the arch-poet, proceeds to give a table of the time in which each order derives the greatest amount of pleasure from the venereal rite. These periods must be learnt by heart, and students will remember that on the other days not specified, no amount of congress will satisfy passions. Read, then, and master the elements.





Of the hours which give the highest enjoyment

Women, be it observed, differ greatly in the seasons which they prefer for enjoyment, according to their classes and temperaments. The Padmini, for instance, takes no satisfaction in night congress; indeed, she is thoroughly averse to it. Like the Surya Kamala (day-lotus) which opens its eyes to the sunlight, so she is satisfied even by a boy-husband in the bright hours. The Chitrini and the Shankhini are like the Chandra Kamala, or night-lotus, that expands to the rays of the moon; and the Hastini, who is the coarsest, ignores all these delicate distinctions.

The following tables, then, show the Pahar, 12 or watch of the night and day, during which the four classes of women derive the greatest pleasure.


Table I - Regulating the Night Hours


Table II - Regulating the Day Hours.


And here it will be observed that the Chitrini and the Shankhini derive no satisfaction from day congress.

Thus did the arch-poet, Kalyana Malla, relate unto Ladkhan Rajah how women are divided into four classes, each of which has its own peculiarity of body and mind, and its several times of enjoyments, according to the state of the moon and the hour of the day or night.



1 Evidently the nervous temperament, with due admixture of the bilious and sanguine.

2 A lofty tree with soft and fragrant pollen.

3 The Yoni the feminine opposite to the Linga (Priapus) or male apparatus.

4 See note, chap. iv., on the Hindu ideas of human sperm, and for the vermicules of the Yoni, chap. iii., sec. 3.

5 Usually known as the Indian cuckoo, though its voice is harsh and disagreeable; in poetry and romance it takes the place of the bulbul of Persia, and the nightingale of Europe.

6 The sanguine temperament.

7 Meaning excellent as that of the Peacock, which is not disliked by the Hindus as by Europeans. They associate it with the breaking of the rainy monsoon, which brings joy to the thirsty earth and sun-parched men.

8 The bilious temperament.

9 So Apollonius of Rhodes, describing the passion of Medeia, says:--"The fire which devours her, attacks all her nerves, and makes itself felt even behind the head in that spot where pain is most poignant when an extreme fervour seizes on all the senses."

10 "Elephant"-woman, because the animal being called the "handed one," from the use of the trunk, and Hastini corresponds with Karami, from kara, a hand. She is "mulier nigris dignissima barris," and of the lymphatic or lowest temperament. These divisions represent, we have noted, roughly and unscientifically, the four European temperaments, nervous, sanguine, bilious and lymphatic. In a future chapter, the three Hindu temperaments will be discussed.

11 The days (Tithi) are those of the lunar fortnight: the Pratipada, for instance, being the first, when the moon's increase and wane begin.

12 As amongst the classics, day and night are divided by the Hindus with eight watches, each of seven ghari, or hours (1 ghari = 241).



Submitting Form...

The server encountered an error.

Form received.