Seven: Picking up men or women

Seven:  Picking up men or women
Untitled Document


ANCIENT authors are of opinion that girls are not so easily seduced by
employing female messengers as by the efforts of the man himself, but
that the wives of others are more easily got at by the aid of female
messengers than by the personal efforts of the man. But Vatsyayana
lays it down that whenever it is possible a man should always act
himself in these matters, and it is only when such is impracticable,
or impossible, that female messengers should be employed. As for the
saying that women who act and talk boldly and freely are to be won by
the personal efforts of the man, and that women who do not possess
those qualities are to be got at by female messengers, it is only a
matter of talk.

Now when a man acts himself in the matter he should first of all make
the acquaintance of the woman he loves in the following manner:

He should arrange to be seen by the woman either on a natural or
special opportunity. A natural opportunity is when one of them goes to
the house of the other, and a special opportunity is when they meet
either at the house of a friend, or a caste-fellow, or a minister, or
a physician, as also on the occasion of marriage ceremonies,
sacrifices, festivals, funerals, and garden parties.

When they do meet, the man should be careful to look at her in such a
way as to cause the state of his mind to be made known to her; he
should pull about his moustache, make a sound with his nails, cause
his own ornaments to tinkle, bite his lower lip, and make various
other signs of that description. When she is looking at him he should
speak to his friends about her and other women, and should show to her
his liberality and his appreciation of enjoyments. When sitting by the
side of a female friend he should yawn and twist his body, contract
his eyebrows, speak very slowly as if he was weary, and listen to her
indifferently. A conversation having two meanings should also be
carried on with a child or some other person, apparently having regard
to a third person, but really having reference to the woman he loves,
and in this way his love should be made manifest under the pretext of
referring to others rather than to herself. He should make marks that
have reference to her, on the earth with his nails, or with a stick,
and should embrace and kiss a child in her presence, and give it the
mixture of betel nut and betel leaves with his tongue, and press its
chin with his fingers in a caressing way. All these things should be
done at the proper time and in proper places.

The man should fondle a child that may be sitting on her lap, and give
it something to play with, and also take the same back again.
Conversation with respect to the child may also be held with her, and
in this manner he should gradually become well acquainted with her,
and he should also make himself agreeable to her relations.
Afterwards, this acquaintance should be made a pretext for visiting
her house frequently, and on such occasions he should converse on the
subject of love in her absence but within her hearing. As his intimacy
with her increases he should place in her charge some kind of deposit
or trust, and take away from it a small portion at a time; or he may
give her some fragrant substances, or betel nuts to be kept for him by
her. After this he should endeavour to make her well acquainted with
his own wife, and get them to carry on confidential conversations, and
to sit together in lonely places. In order to see her frequently he
should arrange so that the same goldsmith, the same jeweller, the same
basket maker, the same dyer, and the same washerman should be employed
by the two families. And he should also pay her long visits openly
under the pretence of being engaged with her on business, and one
business should lead to another, so as to keep up the intercourse
between them. Whenever she wants anything, or is in need of money, or
wishes to acquire skill in one of the arts, he should cause her to
understand that he is willing and able to do anything that she wants,
to give her money, or teach her one of the arts, all these things
being quite within his ability and power. In the same way he should
hold discussions with her in company with other people, and they
should talk of the doings and sayings of other persons, and examine
different things, like jewellery, precious stones, etc. On such
occasions he should show her certain things with the values of which
she may be unacquainted, and if she begins to dispute with him about
the things or their value, he should not contradict her, but point out
that he agrees with her in every way.

Thus end the ways of making the acquaintance of woman desired.

Now after a girl has become acquainted with the man as above
described, and has manifested her love to him by the various outward
signs and by the motions of her body, the man should make every effort
to gain her over. But as girls are not acquainted with sexual union,
they should be treated with the greatest delicacy, and the man should
proceed with considerable caution, though in the case of other women,
accustomed to sexual intercourse, this is not necessary. When the
intentions of the girl are known, and her bashfulness put aside, the
man should begin to make use of her money, and an interchange of
clothes, flowers should be made. In this the man should take
particular care that the things given by him are handsome and
valuable. He should moreover receive from her a mixture of betel nut
and betel leaves, and when he is going to a party he should ask for
the flower in her hair, or for the flower in her hand. If he himself
gives her a flower it should be a sweet smelling one, and marked with
marks made by his nails or teeth. With increasing assiduity he should
dispel her fears, and by degrees get her to go with him to some lonely
place, and there he should embrace and kiss her. And finally at the
time of giving her some betel nut, or of receiving the same from her,
or at the time of making an exchange of flowers, he should touch and
press her private parts, thus bringing his efforts to a satisfactory

When a man is endeavouring to seduce one woman, he should not attempt
to seduce any other at the same time. But after he has succeeded with
the first, and enjoyed her for a considerable time, he can keep her
affections by giving her presents that she likes, and then commence
making up to another woman. When a man sees the husband of a woman
going to some place near his house, he should not enjoy the woman
then, even though she may be easily gained over at that time. A wise
man having a regard for his reputation should not think of seducing a
woman who is apprehensive, timid, not to be trusted, well guarded, or
possessed of a father-in-law, or mother-in-law.


WHEN a man is trying to gain over a woman he should examine the state
of her mind, and act as follows:

If she listens to him, but does not manifest to him in any way her own
intentions, he should then try to gain her over by means of a

If she meets him once, and again comes to meet him better dressed than
before, or comes to him in some lonely place, he should be certain
that she is capable of being enjoyed by the use of a little force. A
woman who lets a man make up to her, but does not give herself up,
even after a long time, should be considered as a trifler in love, but
owing to the fickleness of the human mind, even such a woman can be
conquered by always keeping up a close acquaintance with her.

When a woman avoids the attentions of a man, and on account of respect
for him, and pride in herself, will not meet him or approach him, she
can be gained over with difficulty, either by endeavouring to keep on
familiar terms with her, or else by an exceedingly clever go-between.

When a man makes up to a woman, and she reproaches him with harsh
words, she should be abandoned at once.

When a woman reproaches a man, but at the same time acts
affectionately towards him, she should be made love to in every way.

A woman, who meets a man in lonely places, and puts up with the touch
of his foot, but pretends, on account of the indecision of her mind,
not to be aware of it, should be conquered by patience, and by
continued efforts as follows:

If she happens to go to sleep in his vicinity he should put his left
arm round her, and see when she awakes whether she repulses him in
reality, or only repulses him in such a way as if she was desirous of
the same thing being done to her again. And what is done by the arm
can also be done by the foot. If the man succeeds in this point he
should embrace her more closely, and if she will not stand the embrace
and gets up, but behaves with him as usual the next day, he should
consider then that she is not unwilling to be enjoyed by him. If
however she does not appear again, the man should try to get over her
by means of a go-between; and if, after having disappeared for some
time, she again appears, and behaves with him as usual, the man should
then consider that she would not object to be united with him.

When a woman gives a man an opportunity, and makes her own love
manifest to him, he should proceed to enjoy her. And the signs of a
woman manifesting her love are these:

She calls out to a man without being addressed by him in the first

She shows herself to him in secret places.

She speaks to him tremblingly and inarticulately.

She has the fingers of her hand, and the toes of her feet moistened
with perspiration, and her face blooming with delight.

She occupies herself with shampooing his body and pressing his head.

When shampooing him she works with one hand only, and with the other
she touches and embraces parts of his body.

She remains with both hands placed on his body motionless as if she
had been surprised by something, or was overcome by fatigue.

She sometimes bends down her face upon his thighs and, when asked to
shampoo them does not manifest any unwillingness to do so.

She places one of her hands quite motionless on his body, and even
though the man should press it between two members of his body, she
does not remove it for a long time.

Lastly, when she has resisted all the efforts of the man to gain her
over, she returns to him next day to shampoo his body as before.

When a woman neither gives encouragement to a man, nor avoids him, but
hides herself and remains in some lonely place, she must be got at by
means of the female servant who may be near her. If when called by the
man she acts in the same way, then she should be gained over by means
of a skilful go-between. But if she will have nothing to say to the
man, he should consider well about her before he begins any further
attempts to gain her over.

Thus ends the examination of the state of a woman's mind.

A man should first get himself introduced to a woman, and then carry
on a conversation with her. He should give her hints of his love for
her, and if he finds from her replies that she receives these hints
favourably, he should then set to work to gain her over without any
fear. A woman who shows her love by outward signs to the man at his
first interview should be gained over very easily. In the same way a
lascivious woman, who when addressed in loving words replies openly in
words expressive of her love, should be considered to have been gained
over at that very moment. With regard to all women, whether they be
wise, simple, or confiding, this rule is laid down that those who make
an open manifestation of their love are easily gained over.


IF a woman has manifested her love or desire, either by signs or by
motions of the body, and is afterwards rarely or never seen anywhere,
or if a woman is met for the first time, the man should get a
go-between to approach her.

Now the go-between, having wheedled herself into the confidence of the
woman by acting according to her disposition, should try to make her
hate or despise her husband by holding artful conversations with her,
by telling her about medicines for getting children, by talking to her
about other people, by tales of various kinds, by stories about the
wives of other men, and by praising her beauty, wisdom, generosity and
good nature, and then saying to her: `It is indeed a pity that you,
who are so excellent a woman in every way, should be possessed of a
husband of this kind. Beautiful lady, he is not fit even to serve
you.' The go-between should further talk to the woman about the
weakness of the passion of her husband, his jealousy, his roguery, his
ingratitude, his aversion to enjoyments, his dullness, his meanness,
and all the other faults that he may have, and with which she may be
acquainted. She should particularly harp upon that fault or that
failing by which the wife may appear to be the most affected. If the
wife be a deer woman, and the husband a hare man, then there would be
no fault in that direction, but in the event of his being a hare man,
and she a mare woman or elephant woman, then this fault should be
pointed out to her.

Gonikaputra is of opinion that when it is the first affair of the
woman, or when her love has only been very secretly shown, the man
should then secure and send to her a go-between, with whom she may be
already acquainted, and in whom she confides.

But to return to our subject. The go-between should tell the woman
about the obedience and love of the man, and as her confidence and
affection increase, she should then explain to her the thing to be
accomplished in the following way. `Hear this, Oh beautiful lady, that
this man, born of a good family, having seen you, has gone mad on your
account. The poor young man, who is tender by nature, has never been
distressed in such a way before, and it is highly probable that he
will succumb under his present affliction, and experience the pains of
death.' If the woman listens with a favourable ear, then on the
following day the go-between, having observed marks of good spirits in
her face, in her eyes, and in her manner of conversation, should again
converse with her on the subject of the man, and should tell her the
stories of Ahalya\footnote{$^1$}
{The wife of the sage Gautama, she was seduced by Indra the king
of the Gods.}
and Indra, of Sakoontala\footnote{$^2$}
{The heroine of one of the best, if not the best, of Hindoo
plays, and the best known in Sanscrit dramatic literature. It
was first brought to notice by Sir William Jones, and has been
well and poetically translated by Dr Monier Williams under the
title of Sakoontala, or the lost ring, an Indian drama,
translated into English prose and verse from the Sanscrit of
and Dushyanti, and such
others as may be fitted for the occasion. She should also describe to
her the strength of the man, his talents, his skill in the sixty-four
sorts of enjoyments mentioned by Babhravya, his good looks, and his
liaison with some praiseworthy woman, no matter whether this last ever
took place or not.

In addition to this, the go-between should carefully note the
behaviour of the woman, which if favourable would be as follows: She
would address her with a smiling look, would seat herself close beside
her, and ask her, `Where have you been? What have you been doing?
Where did you dine? Where did you sleep? Where have you been sitting?'
Moreover, the woman would meet the go-between in lonely places and
tell her stories there, would yawn contemplatively, draw long sighs,
give her presents, remember her on occasions of festivals, dismiss her
with a wish to see her again, and say to her jestingly, `Oh,
well-speaking woman, why do you speak these bad words to me?', would
discourse on the sin of her union with the man, would not tell her
about any previous visits or conversations that she may have had with
him, but wish to be asked about these, and lastly would laugh at the
man's desire, but would not reproach him in any way.

Thus ends the behaviour of the woman with the go-between.

When the woman manifests her love in the manner above described, the
go-between should increase it by bringing to her love tokens from the
man. But if the woman be not acquainted with the man personally, the
go-between should win her over by extolling and praising his good
qualities, and by telling stories about his love for her. Here
Auddalaka says that when a man or woman are not personally acquainted
with each other, and have not shown each other any signs of affection,
the employment of a go-between is useless.

The followers of Babhravya on the other hand affirm that even though
they be personally unacquainted, but have shown each other signs of
affection there is an occasion for the employment of a go-between.
Gonikaputra asserts that a go-between should be employed, provided
they are acquainted with each other, even though no signs of affection
may have passed between them. Vatsyayana however lays it down that
even though they may not be personally acquainted with each other, and
may not have shown each other any signs of affection, still they are
both capable of placing confidence in a go-between.

Now the go-between should show the woman the presents, such as the
betel nut and betel leaves, the perfumes, the flowers, and the rings
which the man may have given to her for the sake of the woman, and on
these presents should be impressed the marks of the man's teeth, and
nails, and other signs. On the cloth that he may send he should draw
with saffron both his hands joined together as if in earnest entreaty.

The go-between should also show to the woman ornamental figures of
various kinds cut in leaves, together with ear ornaments, and chaplets
made of flowers containing love letters expressive of the desire of
the man,\footnote{$^3$}%
{It is presumed that something like the following French verses
are intended:
\item{} Quand on a juré le plus profond hommage,
\item{} Voulez vous qu'infidèle on change de langage;
\item{} Vous seul captivez mon esprit et mon coeur
\item{} Que je puisse dans vos bras seuls goûter le bonheur;
\item{} Je voudrais, mais en vain, que mon coeur en délire
\item{} Couche oû ce papier n'oserait vous dire.
\item{} Avec soin, de ces vers lisez leurs premiers mots,
\item{} Vous verrez quel remède il faut à tous mes maux

\noindent Or these:
\item{} Quand on vous voit, on vous aime;
\item{} Quand on vous aime, oû vous voit on?}
and she should cause her to send affectionate presents to
the man in return. After they have mutually accepted each other's
presents, then a meeting should be arranged between them on the faith
of the go-between.

The followers of Babhravya say that this meeting should take place at
the time of going to the temple of a Deity, or on occasions of fairs,
garden parties, theatrical performances, marriages, sacrifices,
festivals and funerals, as also at the time of going to the river to
bathe, or at times of natural calamities,\footnote{$^4$}
{It is supposed that storms, earthquakes, famines and pestilent
diseases are here alluded to.}
fear of robbers or hostile
invasions of the country.

Gonikaputra is of opinion however that these meetings had better be
brought about in the abodes of female friends, mendicants,
astrologers, and ascetics. But Vatsyayana decides that that place is
only well suited for the purpose which has proper means of ingress and
egress, and where arrangements have been made to prevent any
accidental occurrence, and when a man who has once entered the house
can also leave it at the proper time without any disagreeable

Now go-betweens or female messengers are of the following different

A go-between who takes upon herself the whole burden of the business

A go-between who does only a limited part of the business

A go-between who is the bearer of a letter only

A go-between acting on her own account

The go-between of an innocent young woman

A wife serving as a go-between

A mute go-between

A go-between who acts the part of the wind

A woman who, having observed the mutual passion of a man and woman,
brings them together and arranges it by the power of her own
intellect, such a one is called a go-between who takes upon herself
the whole burden of the business. This kind of go-between is chiefly
employed when the man and the woman are already acquainted with each
other, and have conversed together, and in such cases she is sent not
only by the man (as is always done in all other cases) but by the
woman also. The above name is also given to a go-between who,
perceiving that the man and the woman are suited to each other, tries
to bring about a union between them, even though they be
not-acquainted with each other.

A go-between who, perceiving that some part of the affair is already
done, or that the advances on the part of the man are already made,
completes the rest of the business, is called a go-between who
performs only a limited part of the business.

A go-between who simply carries messages between a man and a woman,
who love each other, but who cannot frequently meet, is called the
bearer of a Tetter or message.

This name is also given to one who is sent by either of the lovers to
acquaint either the one or the other with the time and place of their

A woman who goes herself to a man, and tells him of her having enjoyed
sexual union with him in a dream, and expresses her anger at his wife
having rebuked him for calling her by the name of her rival instead of
by her own name, and gives him something bearing the marks of her
teeth and nails and informs him that she knew she was formerly desired
by him, and asks him privately whether she or his wife is the best
looking, such a person is called a woman who is a go-between for
herself. Now such a woman should be met and interviewed by the man in
private and secretly.

The above name is also given to a woman who having made an agreement
with some other woman to act as her go-between, gains over the man to
herself, by the means of making him personally acquainted with
herself, and thus causes the other woman to fail. The same applies to
a man who, acting as a go-between for another, and having no previous
connection with the woman, gains her over for himself, and thus causes
the failure of the other man.

A woman who has gained the confidence of the innocent young wife of
any man, and who has learned her secrets without exercising any
pressure on her mind, and found out from her how her husband behaves
to her, if this woman then teaches her the art of securing his favour,
and decorates her so as to show her love, and instructs her how and
when to be angry, or to pretend to be so, and then, having herself
made marks of the nails and teeth on the body of the wife, gets the
latter to send for her husband to show these marks to him, and thus
excite him for enjoyment, such is called the go-between of an innocent
young woman. In such cases the man should send replies to his wife
through the same woman.

When a man gets his wife to gain the confidence of a woman whom he
wants to enjoy, and to call on her and talk to her about the wisdom
and ability of her husband, that wife is called a wife serving as a
go-between. In this case the feelings of the woman with regard to the
man should also be made known through the wife.

When any man sends a girl or a female servant to any woman under some
pretext or other, and places a letter in her bouquet of flowers, or in
her ear ornaments, or marks something about her with his teeth or
nails, that girl or female servant is called a mute go-between. In
this case the man should expect an answer from the woman through the
same person.

A person, who carries a message to a woman, which has a double
meaning, or which relates to some past transactions, or which is
unintelligible to other people, is called a go-between who acts the
part of the wind. In this case the reply should be asked for through
the same woman.

Thus end the different kinds of go-betweens.

A female astrologer, a female servant, a female beggar, or a female
artist are well acquainted with the business of a go-between, and very
soon gain the confidence of other women. Any one of them can raise
enmity between any two persons if she wishes to do so, or extol the
loveliness of any woman that she wishes to praise, or describe the
arts practised by other women in sexual union. They can also speak
highly of the love of a man, of his skill in sexual enjoyment, and of
the desire of other women, more beautiful even than the woman they are
addressing, for him, and explain the restraint under which he may be
at home.

Lastly a go-between can, by the artfulness of her conversation, unite
a woman with a man even though he may not have been thought of by her,
or may have been considered beyond her aspirations. She can also bring
back a man to a woman, who, owing to some cause or other, has
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