I came across these lines from Anuśāsana-parva of Mahābhārata (http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/m13/m13b024.htm):
From here (http://gretil.sub.uni-goettingen.de/...h/mbh_13_u.htm), I was able to locate the original Sanskrit sloka's for the above.I shall, in this connection, tell thee what the eternal usage is. In days of yore, O king, the Kshatriyas used to serve the Brahmanas. The Vaisya in a similar manner used in those days to worship the royal order, and the Sudra to worship the Vaisya. Even this is what is heard. The Brahmana was like a blazing fire. Without being able to touch him or approach his presence, the Sudra used to serve the Brahmana from a distance. It was only the Kshatriya and the Vaisya who could serve the Brahmana by touching his person or approaching his presence.
My question is: Which Sanskrit words in the above correspond to 'touch' (or 'untouchability') and 'from a distance' from the English translation? saṃsparśaparicaryas looks like something to do with 'touch'?13,058.032a atra te vartayiṣyāmi yathā dharmaḥ sanātanaḥ<BR>
13,058.032c rājanyo brāhmaṇaṃ rājan purā paricacāra ha<BR>
13,058.032e vaiśyo rājanyam ity eva śūdro vaiśyam iti śrutiḥ<BR>
13,058.033a dūrāc chūdreṇopacaryo brāhmaṇo 'gnir iva jvalan<BR>
13,058.033c saṃsparśaparicaryas tu vaiśyena kṣatriyeṇa ca<BR>
PS. The point of my post is to understand the original meaning or intent of the Sanskrit words and not to start a debate on whether untouchability is justified.