In the last two months, I have been busy deciphering two manuscripts of the Seśvaramīmāṃsā by Veṅkaṭanātha. One of them is in Telegu and the other in Grantha. The first one is a clearly recent one, written on paper in a sort of notebook and dated to 1893 CE. The other one has no colophon at all. Both end abruptly.
Of the Seśvaramīmāṃsā, two books have been published, representing the commentary on Pūrva Mīmāṃsā Sūtra 1.1. and 1.2. It seems however awkward that Veṅkaṭanātha would have stopped just at the end of the second book, instead of stopping, for instance, at the same point as Kumārila’s Tantravārttika.
The two manuscripts mentioned above contain the entire published portion of the SM which they repeat with minor variants in the case of the first book and with more significant ones in the case of the second –something which could depend also on the poor state of the edition of SM ad PMS 1.2. The variants in the Grantha manuscript are also often the result of misspelt/misread words, sautes du même au même and the like. The Telegu manuscript is more precise and adheres to the published edition almost closely—and in this sense it is also less interesting.
What is really exciting, however, is that both go further on after the published portion. The Telegu manuscript contains also the commentary on PMS 1.3.1 and 1.3.2, the other one contains surely the commentary on PMS 1.3.1 and perhaps something else. This uncertainty is due to the weird fact that the “new” portion is at first identical in both manuscripts, but after approximately seven lines and starting from amid a sentence, they start following two completely different ways. Since both texts relate to PMS 1.3.1 one wonders whether they are different fragments of the SM.