Page:A history of Sanskrit literature (1900), Macdonell, Arthur Anthony.djvu/433

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form of tale; indeed Buddha himself in the old Jātaka stories appears in the form of various animals.

Contemporaneously with the fable literature, the most intellectual game the world has known began its westward migration from India. Chess in Sanskrit is called chatur-anga, or the "four-limbed army," because it represents a kriegspiel, in which two armies, consisting of infantry, cavalry, chariots, and elephants, each led by a king and his councillor, are opposed. The earliest direct mention of the game in Sanskrit literature is found in the works of Bāṇa, and the Kāvyālaṃkāra of Rudraṭa, a Kashmirian poet of the ninth century, contains a metrical puzzle illustrating the moves of the chariot, the elephant, and the horse. Introduced into Persia in the sixth century, chess was brought by the Arabs to Europe, where it was generally known by 1100 A.D. It has left its mark on mediæval poetry, on the idioms of European languages (e.g. "check," from the Persian shah, "king"), on the science of arithmetic in the calculation of progressions with the chessboard, and even in heraldry, where the "rook" often figures in coats of arms. Beside the fable literature of India, this Indian game served to while away the tedious life of myriads during the Middle Ages in Europe.

Turning to Philosophical Literature, we find that the early Greek and Indian philosophers have many points in common. Some of the leading doctrines of the Eleatics, that God and the universe are one, that everything existing in multiplicity has no reality, that thinking and being are identical, are all to be found in the philosophy of the Upanishads and the Vedānta system, which is its outcome. Again, the doctrine of Empe-