domenica 14 luglio 2013

Vish kanyas

They were beautiful, very sensual, educated in dance, singing and in all the arts, but they were dangerous. Their blood was poisoned and the only contact they could kill a person.

These are the Vish kanyas, or the 'poison women', in fact in Sanskrit visha means poison and kanya means woman, girl.
Of their existence and their utilization speaks Kautilya, the author of the treatise on politics Arthasastra (between the fourth and third centuries b.C.). It seems that Kautilya, an adviser of King Chandragupta  founder of the great  Indian dynasty Maurya, had an army of Vish kanyas, young women who were sent by the enemies, and then seduced them, with a kiss or even a mere glance caused their death .
And whence came this power?
According the legend, small girls born onon Tuesday during the seventh lunar day of Vishaka were selected and with a horoscope providing for their future state of widowhood.
So choices, the girls were educated in the arts and were slowly accustomed to the poison due to administration of increasing doses of poisons. Many of them died, but those who survived, became immune and all their bodily fluids were poisonous so that a kiss or a sexual relationship could cause the death of a man.
Most likely, however, these women were well-trained spies that, once entered into the good graces of the enemy, they poisoned him.
But their deadliness has entered in the collective imagination of India and in the folklore that has made them poisonous and almost magical beings, protagonists of novels, sagas and comics.

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