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THE

SACRED BOOKS OF THE EAST


TRANSLATED

BY VARIOUS ORIENTAL SCHOLARS

AND EDITED BY

F.

MAX MULLER

VOL. XLII

jforfc

AT THE CLARENDON PRESS


1897
[All rights reserved]

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA


TOGETHER WITH

EXTRACTS FROM THE RITUAL BOOKS

AND THE COMMENTARIES

TRANSLATED BY

MAURICE BLOOMFIELD

0*

VI
K* ft

AT THE CLARENDON PRESS


1897
[

All

rights reserved']

CONTENTS.
Introduction

TACES

The names of the Atharva-veda and their meanings


II. The position of the Atharva-veda in Hindu Litera-

xvii

I.

......
.......
.......

ture in general
III.

The Atharva-veda
Literature

Prefatory remarks

view of

in the

Hymns, Translation and Commentary


I.

Charms

to cure diseases

its

xxviii

Ritualistic
lvii

Ixxi

and possession by demons

of disease (bhaisha^yani).

Book

Charm

22.

v,

.....
takman

against

related diseases

(fever)

and

Charm against takman (fever)


Charm against takman (fever)
i, 25.
vii, 116. Charm against takman (fever)
vi,

20.

v, 4.

.....

Prayer to the kushMa-plant to destroy

takman

(fever)

Prayer to the kush/^a-plant to de-

xix, 39.

stroy

takman

(fever)

and other ailments

Prayer to lightning, conceived as the


cause of fever, headache, and cough

i,

12.

i,

22.

Charm

diseases

......

against jaundice and related

vi, 14. Charm against the disease balasa


vi, 105. Charm against cough
2. Charm against excessive discharges from
i,

the
ii,

3.

......
.......

body

Charm

against

excessive

discharges

from the body, undertaken with springwater

I.

CONTENTS.

VIII

BOOK

PAGES

Charm

44.

vi,

the

body

Charm

3.

i,

against excessive discharges from

urine

Charm

90.

vi,

the missiles of

vii,

Rudra

.....

Charm against dropsy


83. Charm against dropsy

24. Dropsy, heart-disease,

vi,

cured by flowing water

An

80.

vi,

....
.

Charm against kshetriya, hereditary disease


10. Charm against
kshetriya, hereditary disease
hi. 7. Charm against
kshetriya, hereditary disease
ii,

i,

23.
24.

Leprosy cured by a dark plant


Leprosy cured by a dark plant

Charm

83.

vi,

apaftt
vii,

76. A.

74. A.

Charm
Charm

14,

292

15,

336
266

.16,

.....

for curing

Charm

to

tumours called ^ayanya

vi,

57. Urine

iv,

12.

appease jealousy

vows

against scrofulous sores

(^alasha) as a cure

for

Charm

The pepper-corn as a cure for wounds


Charm to stop the flow of blood
Charm against worms
Charm against worms in cattle

109.

31.

ii,

32.

559

7>

17,560
18,

562

i8,557
18,559
18, 559
19,

472

19,

488

19,384

....
.....22,

with the plant sila/Si


(laksha, arundhati)
for the cure of wounds

17.

Charm

with the plant arundhati


(laksha) for
the cure of fractures

ii,

53

scrofulous

sores

i,

i7>

upon neck

and shoulders

vi,

16,268

curing scrofulous sores called

C. Prayer to
Agni, the lord of

Charm

500
286

for curing scrofulous sores called

for

25.

13,

curing scrofulous sores called

Charm

vi,

v, 5.

12,471

a P ayHt

B.

241

12,562

13,

C. Stanza sung at the


mid-day pressure of
the soma
vii,

11,506
11,

.......

for

apaX'it

B.

235

oblation to the sun, conceived as one of

the two heavenly dogs, as a cure for


paralysis

i,

10,

and kindred maladies

8.

ii,

481

against internal pain (colic), due to

10.

i,

10,

and retention of

against constipation

20,419
21,516

257

22,313

23,

317

CONTENTS.

IX
PAGES

Charm against worms


Charm against poison
Charm against poison

v, 23.
iv, 6.

....
....

in children

iv,

7.

vi,

100. Ants as an antidote against poison

13. Charm against snake-poison


vi, 12. Charm against snake-poison
vii, 56. Charm against the poison of serpents,
v,

pions,

.....

insects

scor-

Charm against ophthalmia


Charm to promote the growth of hair
136. Charm with the plant nitatnt to promote
16.

vi,

21.

vi,
vi,

the

.....

growth of hair

....
....

Charm to promote the growth


4. Charm to promote virility
in. Charm against mania
37. Charm with the plant a^a-rmigi
137.

vi,
iv,
vi,
iv,

ii,

and

9.

iv,

of hair

to drive out

Rakshas, Apsaras, and Gandharvas


Possession by demons of disease, cured by an
amulet of ten kinds of wood

....

36.

Charm

against

.....

demons (pua&i) conceived

as the cause of disease

25. Charm with the plant pmniparm against the


demon of disease called kava
vi, 32. Charm for driving away demons (Rakshas

ii,

......

and PuaX'as)
ii,

4.

Charm

with

an

amulet

derived

^angina-tree, against diseases and


xix, 34.

Charm

with an amulet derived from the

^ahgk/a-tree, against diseases and


xix, 35.

Charm

demons

with an amulet derived from the

^-angina-tree, against diseases

and demons

.....

Exorcism of disease by means of an amulet


from the varawa-tree

vi,

85.

vi,

127.

The
The

/vipudru-tree as a

panacea

healing properties of bdellium


91. Bailey and water as universal remedies

xix, 38.
vi,
viii,

7.

Hymn

to all

....
.....

magic and medicinal

used as a universal remedy


vi,
ii,

from the

demons

96. Plants as a
33.

Charm

panacea

to secure perfect health

plants,

CONTENTS.
PAGES

BOOK

Charm to procure immunity from all diseases


Charm for obtaining long life and prosperity

ix, 8.
ii,

29.

....

by transmission of disease

II.

life

Prayers for long

n. Prayer

iii,

ii,

and long

for health

life

53. Prayer for long

vii,

life

47, 3

life

52, 55i

life

....

.....
(afigana.)

iv,

9.

iv,

10.

The

pearl

ing long
xix, 26.

III.

life

Gold

as

and

its

shell as

....

an amulet bestow-

and prosperity
an amulet for long

life

and ene-

Imprecations against demons, sorcerers,


mies (abhiA'arikam and kr/tyapratiharaani).
Against sorcerers and demons

i,

7.

i,

8.

i,

16.

Against sorcerers and demons


Charm with lead, against demons and sorcerers

vi,

ii,

....

(rakshas)

.......

Charm

against a variety of female demons,

The soma-oblation

2.

14.

directed against

conceived as hostile to men,


iii,

Against

9.

demons)

cattle,

demons

and home

.......

vishkandha

and

kabava

(hostile

Charm with a certain plant (sada?pushpa)


which exposes demons and enemies

iv,

20.

iv,

17.

Charm

with

the

apamarga-plant, against

sorcery, demons, and enemies


iv,

18.

Charm

with

the

apamarga-plant, against

sorcery, demons, and enemies


iv,

.....

power of the apamarga-plant,


demons and sorcerers

19. Mystic

5, 306
51, 3 6 4

of
Prayer for exemption from the dangers
death
from the dangers of
viii, 2. Prayer for exemption
death
from disease and death
v, 30. Prayer for exemption
as a protector of life and limb
Salve
1.

viii,

49, 34i

pronounced over a boy

and long

31. Prayer for health

iii,

600

and health (ayushyam).

Prayer for long

28.

45,

against

53> 569

55,

CONTENTS.

Charm

65.

vii,

XI

with the apamarga-plant,

and the consequence of

sinful

against

deeds

x, 1.

72,

556
602

v,

76,

456

77,

429

Prayer for protection addressed to a talis


man made from the wood of the sraktya-tree

79,

575

.....

81,

605

84,

608

88,

389

89,

294

curses,

72,

Charm to repel sorceries or spells


31. Charm to repel sorceries or spells
14. Charm to repel sorceries or spells

v,

viii, 5.

Praise of the virtues of an

x, 3.

from the

vara;/a-tree

Praise of the virtues of an amulet of khadira

x, 6.

wood

in the

shape of a ploughshare
for

protection

work

.......

70. Frustration of the sacrifice of

vii,

Charm

7.

ii,

against

Imprecation against enemies thwarting holy

12.

ii,

against curses

and

an enemy

hostile plots,

9, 557

under

taken with a certain plant


6. The a^vattha-tree as a destroyer of enemies

iii,

91,

285

334

....

92,

495

......

93,

Oblation for the

Vi > 75-

(nairbadhyawz havi/2)

suppression of enemies

37. Curse against one that practises hostile


charms

vi,

Charm

13.

vii,

IV.

....

Prayer to Varuwa
treacherous designs

16.

iv,

amulet derived

Charms

pertaining to

enemies of

women

their strength

(strikarma/zi).

Charm to obtain a husband


Charm to obtain a husband
Charm for obtaining a wife

36.

ii,

to deprive

vi,

60.

vi,

82.

vi,

78. Blessing for a married couple

vii,

36.

Love-charm spoken by a

vii,

37.

Charm pronounced by

bridal couple

.......
........
the bride over the

bridegroom

81.

vi,

tion
iii,

23.

vi,

11.

Charm
Charm

35.

vi,

17.

i,

son (puwsavanam)
for obtaining a son (pu;savanam)

for obtaining a

An incantation to make a woman


Charm to prevent miscarriage
Charm for easy parturition

vii,

11.

bracelet as an amulet to ensure concep-

sterile

CONTENTS.

Xll

i,

Charm

34.

.......

with licorice, to secure the love of a

woman

30. Charm to secure the love of a woman


vi, 8. Charm to secure the love of a woman
vi, 9. Charm to secure the love of a woman
vi, 102. Charm to secure the love of a woman
Charm to arouse the passionate love
iii, 25.
ii,

woman

man

Charm

131.

vi,

man

Charm

132.

vi,

man

to arouse the passionate

vi,

vi,

18.

woman
45.

vii,

100,

459

101,

459

101. 512

of

cause

the

return

love

....
rival

18.

i,

woman

......
......
.....

no. Expiatory charm


unlucky star

for a child

104, 534

104,

535

104, 535
105, 371

106,

496

106, 467
107, 547
107, 252

107, 354
108, 537

109, 260

born under an

140. Expiation for the irregular appearance of


the first pair of teeth

vi,

546

of

vi,

103,

of a truant

woman's incantation against her

from a

102, 539

love of

Charm of a woman against a rival or co-wife


vi, 138. Charm for depriving a man of his virility
18. Charm to remove evil bodily characteristics
iii,

102, 358

love of

assignation

Charm to allay jealousy


Charm to allay jealousy

14.

i,

arouse the passionate love of

to

Charm at an
77. Charm to

iv, 5.

100, 311

.......
.......
.......
.......
....
.......
....

Charm to arouse the passionate


a woman
vii, 38. Charm to secure the love of a man
vi, 130. Charm to arouse the passionate
139.

vi,

99, 274

109, 517

110,540

V. Charms pertaining to royalty (ra-akarma;ri).


iv, 8.

Prayer

at the consecration of a

iii,

3.

Charm

for the restoration of

iii,

4.

iii,

5.

iv,

22.
9.

in, 378

112, 327

of a king
.113, 330
Praise of an amulet derived from the parwa-

Prayer

tree,

i,

king
an exiled king

at the election

designed to strengthen royal power


to secure the superiority of a king

Charm

Prayer for earthly and heavenly success

114, 331

115, 404

116, 239

CONTENTS.

Battle-charm

viii, 8.

Battle-charm against arrow- wounds


Battle-charm for confusing the enemy.

19.
1.

iii,

and power

for glory (ya^as)

39. Prayer

vi,

i,

....
......

38. Prayer for lustre

vi,

Xlll

vi,

117, 582

121, 325

battle

117, 478

120, 262

Battle-charm for confusing the enemy


97. Battle-charm of a king upon the eve of

iii, 2.

116, 477

121, 327

........
........
........

123, 63I

....

126, 637
13. 43 6

122, 5IO

99. Battle-charm of a king upon the eve of

vi,

battle

123,

5IO

Prayer to Arbudi and Nyarbudi for help in

xi, 9.

battle

v,

Prayer to Trishawdhi for help in battle


20. Hymn to the battle-drum

v,

21.

xi, 10.

Hymn

enemy

to the battle-drum, the terror of the

*3 l

439

VI. Charms to secure harmony, influence in the assem


bly,

and the

like

(sawmanasyani, &c).

Charm to secure harmony


vi, 73. Charm to allay discord
vi, 74. Charm to allay discord
vii, 52. Charm against strife and bloodshed
vi, 64. Charm to allay discord
vi, 42. Charm to appease anger
vi, 43. Charm to appease anger
Charm against opponents in debate, underii, 27.
iii,

30.

taken with the pa/a-plant


vii,

vi,

12.

94.

134, 3 6 *
135, 494
135, 495

136, 55o

136, 492

136, 479

137,

480

137,

34

Charm to procure influence in the assembly


Charm to bring about submission to one's

will

13 8 543
,

138, 508

VII. Charms to secure prosperity in house, field, cattle,


business, gambling, and kindred matters.

Prayer at the building of a house

iii,

12.

vi,

142. Blessing during the sowing of seed

vi,

79.

Charm

vi,

50.

Exorcism of vermin

for procuring increase of grain

vii,

Charm

141, 499

infesting grain in the

field

11.

Mo, 343
Mi, 54i

142, 485
to protect grain

from lightning

142, 543

CONTENTS.

XIV
BOOK

PAGES

Charm for the prosperity of cattle


14. Charm for the prosperity of cattle

M2, 303
M3. 351

26.

ii,

iii,

......
......
.......
......
......

59. Prayer to the plant arundhati for protection

vi,

to cattle

Charm

vi,

70.

iii,

28.

144,

to her calf

Formula

calves
vi,

92.

iii,

13.

Charm
Charm

endow a horse with


conducting a

for

M4, 493

of the birth of twin

in expiation

to

M5, 359
M5> 507

swiftness

river into a

new

channel
106.

iv,

3.

Charm

vi,

ward

to

off

danger from

146, 348

fire.

Shepherd's charm against wild beasts and


robbers

iii,

15.

iv,

38. A.

49O

attachment of a cow

to secure the

merchant's prayer

147,

5M

M7.

3 66

148, 352

Prayer for success in gambling

149, 412

B. Prayer to secure the return of calves that

have strayed to a distance


vii,

vi,

Charm
of

xi, 2.

Pedu

against serpents, invoking the horse


that slays serpents
.

to

Prayer
from dangers

28. Prayer to

vi,

9.

Charm

.....
.....

Bhava and

548

151, 487

152, 605

.Sarva for protection

Bhava and

from dangers
vii,

150,

Exorcism of serpents from the premises

56.

x, 4.

iv,

150, 413

50. Prayer for success at dice

155, 618

-Sarva for protection

for finding lost

property

158, 406
159, 542

128. Propitiation of the


weather-prophet
Prayer for deliverance from calamity, ad
.

160, 532

xi, 6.

dressed to the entire pantheon

VIII.

Charms

in expiation of sin

160,

and defilement,

....

vi,

45.

Prayer against mental delinquency

vi,

26.

Charm

vi,

114. Expiatory formula for imperfections in the


sacrifice

vi,

vi,

vi,

to avert evil

......

115. Expiatory formulas for sins


112. Expiation for the precedence of a younger
brother over an older

113. Expiation

628

163, 483
l6 3> 473

164, 528

164, 529

....

164, 521

heinous crimes

165, 527

for certain

XV

CONTENTS.

20. Prayer for

vi,

vi,

27.

vi,

29.

heaven

after

remission of sins

birds

166, 474

ominous pigeons and owls


Expiation when one is defiled by a black

Charm

64.

vii,

Charm

istics,

evil

for the

dreams

removal of

475

.167, 485

evil character-

and the acquisition of auspicious ones

IX. Prayers and

166,

167, 555

Exorcism of

115.

vii,

against

omen

bird of
46.

vi,

165, 529

against pigeons regarded as ominous

Charm

168, 564

imprecations in the interest of the

Brahmans.
Imprecation against the oppressors of Brah-

v, 18.

mans
v,

.169, 430

........
......

19. Imprecation against the oppressors of Brah-

mans
v,

Prayer to appease Arati, the

7.

demon

and avarice

The

xii, 4.

the
xi,

1.

necessity of giving

Brahmans

away
.

sterile

cows

172,423

to

.174, 656

The

preparation of the brahmaudana, the


porridge given as a fee to the Brahmans
.

179,

610

The

preparation of the brahmaudana, the


porridge given as a fee to the Brahmans

xii, 3.

Removal of a house

ix, 3.

that has

to a priest as sacrificial reward


vi,

171, 433

of grudge

71.

Brahmanical prayer

xx, 127.

kuntapa-hymn

185, 645

been presented
.

.....

at the receipt of gifts

193, 595
196, 494

197,688

X. Cosmogonic and theosophic hymns.


xii,
xiii,

Hymn

1.

to

goddess Earth

for sovereign

xi, 5.

Pra7/a,

supreme
ix, 2.

207, 661

Glorification of the sun, or the primeval prin-

ciple, as
xi, 4.

.199, 639

Prayer
power addressed to the
god Rohita and his female Rohiwi

Brahman

life

or

spirit

Prayer to Kama
mordial power

disciple

breath,
.

personified
.

as
.

214, 626

the

.218, 622

(love), personified as a pri.

220, 591

CONTENTS.

XVI

Prayer to Kala (time), personified as a pri.


mordial principle

xix, 53.

to

Prayer
mordial principle

xix, 54.

xi,

ix,

Indexes
I.

II.

......
......

Kala

7. Apotheosis of the ukkMshfa, the leavings of


the sacrifice
1.

Hymn

to the honey-lash of the Ajvins

....

Index of Subjects
Index of Hymns in the order of the Atharva-veda

Additions and Corrections

224, 681

(time), personified as a pri-

225, 687

226, 629

229, 587

693
709
711

Transliteration of Oriental Alphabets adopted for the

Translations of the Sacred Books of the East

713

INTRODUCTION.
The names

I.

of the Atharva-veda and

THEIR MEANINGS.

The
T

fourth

pound stem
angiras.

Veda

is

known

in

Hindu

literature

by an

unusually large number of appellations. Of


these the dvandva plural atharvahgirasa/^ is old.
occurr i n g

^V. X, 7, 20 it is the name found at


MSS. themselves. The appear;

the head of the Atharvan

ance of this name

made
tive

the basis

given text has not unfrequently been


for estimating the relapartly or entirely
in a

But

chronology of that text.

this criterion can claim

only negative value, since the designation occurs in a text


It is found in
as late as the Au^anasa-smr/ti, III. 44 1
a great variety of texts of the Vedic literature, as may be
.

seen in the subsequent account of the attitude of Hindu


literature towards the fourth Veda (p. xxviii ff.), but at no
it positively exclude other designations.
locative singular of this same compound occurs in

period does

The

a passage not altogether textually certain, Mahabh. Ill,


305, 20=17066, where the Bombay edition has atharvarigi-

The
srutam, but the Calcutta, atharva^irasi jrutam.
locative singular (apparently neuter) of the stem atharvaiigirasi

rasa occurs rarely, Ya^wa v. I, 312 (kujalam atharvarigirase).


specimen of a derivative adjective from the compound

may

be seen at

Manu XI,

33, atharvangirasi/j sruti/i;

Mahabh. VIII, 40, 33=1848, kr/tyam


1

[42]

atharvaiigirasim.

See (yivananda's Dharmajastrasawgraha, vol.

i,

p. 514.

cf.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

XV111

atharvan, with a great variety of derivatives,


employed growingly as the designation of

The name

is

Meaning of

the

each of the
terms atharvan

T T

Veda

the

5,

ir

angiras by itself is so
attention when it is met.

arre st

rare as to

At TS. VII,

name
n,

Ka/7/aka Aj-vamedha-

grantha, V, 2, occurs the formula arigirobhya/z svaha, preit is, as far as is known,
ceded by rzgbhya//, &c. svaha
:

the solitary occurrence of this designation of the Atharvaveda in a Vedic text l


Quite frequently, however, the
.

members

of the

compound

atharvahgirasa/z are separated

mentioned by itself, but always in more


This shows
or less close conjunction with one another.
that the compound is not a congealed formula, but that the
so that each

is

texts are conscious of the fact that each has a distinct

and a right to separate existence. In other


actually consists of atharvan and ahgiras
and
the
matter,
question arises what elements in the makeindividuality,

AV.

words, the

this Veda these terms refer to. The answer, I believe,


be given with a considerable degree of certainty
now
may

up of

the term atharvan refers to the auspicious practices of the


Veda, the bhesha^ani (AV. XI, 6, 14), those parts of the

Veda which

are recognised by the Atharvan ritual and


the orthodox Brahmanical writings, as janta, holy,' and
the term ahgiras refers
paush/ika, conferring prosperity
'

'

'

to the hostile sorcery practices of the Veda, the yatu (.Sat.


Br. X, 5, 2, 20), or abhiMra 2 which is terrible (ghora).
,

In an article entitled, On the position of the Vaitanasutra in the literature of the Atharva-veda,' Journ. Amer.
Or. Soc. XI, 387 ff., I pointed out that the above-mentioned
'

distinction

is

clearly

made

at Vait. Su. 5, 10,

where two

of plants are differentiated, one as atharvaya/z, the


other as ahgirasya/z. The same distinction is maintained
lists

at

Gop. Br.

I, 2,

18.

The former

refers to the list of plants

1
In texts not Vedic the term angirasa/4 occurs occasionally as an abbreviated
form of atharvangirasa/^. Thus in the first superscription of the AV. PratiCf. also
jakhya, the .Saunakiya Aaturadhyayika, and in Paini V, 2, 37.

Gop. Br. I,
u
For the

distinction between .ranta

on

our edition.

p. 11 of

1, 8.

and abhi/tarika

see Kaiu. 3, 19,

and note 5

INTRODUCTION.
catalogued at Kaiu.

8, 16,

and there

XIX

distinctly described as

'holy;' the second list is stated at Vait. Su. 5, 10


itself to be ahgirasa, in the obscure terms, kapurviparvaThese
rodakavrzkkavatina^anirdahantibhir arigirasibhi//.
janta//,

names are

general unknown, the text is not quite certain,


last, nirdahanti, shows that the

in

but the designation of the


list

designed for unholy sorcery practices (abhi^arika)

is

The

adjective ahgirasa
equivalent to abhiarika.

AV.

the

1
.

general in the ritualist texts of

in

is

Thus

sa;;zbhara ahgi-

daWa
Kau^. 47, 2, means utensils for sorcery 2
ahgirasa//, Kaiu. 47, 12, means 'staff for sorcery;' agnir
3
The fifth
ahgirasa//, Kauj. 14, 30, means 'sorcery-fire
'

'

rasa//,

.'

kalpa of the AV., usually known as Ahgirasa-kalpa, bears


also the names AbhLara-kalpa, and Vidhana-kalpa, text'

book of sorcery
It

is

angiras

'

see ibid. XI, 376 ft.


worth while to follow out this specific use of the
term ahgirasa in non-Atharvan texts, lest it be
in
suspected of being an Atharvanic refinement.

non-Atharvan
texts.

q^e Rig-vidhana IV,


j-loka

'
:

He

against

6, 4,

has the following


those that arc-

whom

Ahgirasakalpas practice sorcery repels them


The term pratyahgirasa
with the Pratyahgirasakalpa *.'
the exact equivalent of pratyabhi/ ara//a, counter-witch-

skilled in the
all

'

is

craft

'

(AV.

II, 11, 2),

and the kr/tyapratiharawani, Ath.

The texts of the sort


7, note).
(cf.
called atharvaz/apratyahgirakalpam (! see Ind. Stud. I, 469)
deal with the same theme, as does the Ya^ur-vidhana
Parly. 32, 2

Kauj-. 39,

(Agni-pura;/a, 259, ic) in the expression pratyahgireshu


Cf. also the titles of works, pratyahgiratatva,
(sc. karmasu).

pratyahgirapa^ahga, and pratyahgirasukta, mentioned in


Bohtlingk's Lexicon, as probably dealing with the same

We may

theme.
1

Cf.

AV.

Ill, 2, 5

connect with this pejorative use of the

VII, 108,

IX, 2,4;

5, 31

XIV,

2,

48.

Darila, ghoradravyai.

K&yava, angirasoigni/* M</alagni/r.


arigirasakalpais tu tadvido ibhi/J'aranti sa pratyangirasakalpena sarvaws
Ath. Parij. 3,
tan pratibadhate.
Cf. also the following jlokas, and IV, 8, 3
4

yam

and

Rudolf Meyer's preface to his edition of the Rig-vidhana, p. xxxi.


Sayawa, nivaryate parakr/tabhiHrn^anita krz'tya anena iti pratyabhi^.isee

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

XX
word

the fact that the Vish/m-pura//a (Wilson's


translation, V, 383) and the Bhavishya-pura//a count the
Arigirasa as one of the four Vedas of the Parsis (Maga), the
arigirasa

other three, Vada, Vuvavada, and Vidut, also conveying


thinly veiled disparagement of the religious books of an
exotic religion cf. Wilson in Reinaud's Memoire sur l'lnde,
;

2
292, note; Weber, Ind. Lit. p. 164, note.
then regard it as certain that the words arigiras

p. 394; Ind. Stud.

We may
and

I,

arigirasa are reflected

by the ceremonial literature in the


Far more important is

sense of abhiX'ara and abhi^arika.

the evidence of certain texts of greater antiquity, and higher


dignity, which have occasion to mention the Atharvan inci-

and enunciate clearly this twofold character of


the Veda.
They make the very same distinction between
atharvan and arigiras that appeared above in the ritualistic
dentally,

At ^Sarikh. Sr.
passage, Vait. Su. 5, 10 (Gop. Br. I, 2, 18).
XVI, 2, 1 ff., on the occasion of the horse-sacrifice, recitamade from

tions are

the

the ordinary Vedic classes of literature,


ya^uwshi, samani, and also the remoter literary

rikd.Ii,

categories which the Brahmaz/as and Sutras report, with


great unanimity and considerable variety, as having been
in existence in their time
the itihasa (akhyana), pura^a,
:

&C

The Atharvan

figures immediately after


and
that
too twice, in its double
Saman,
character as Atharvan and Arigiras, and, what is more important, bhesha^am, i.e. remedial charms, are recited from
the Atharvan; ghoram, i.e. sorcery, abhi^arikam, from
the Arigiras 2
The commentator regards bhesha^am and

sarpavidya,
the Rik and

ghoram
kanam

as distinct works,

bhesha^agranthasyjUtharvam-

grantha//. The same subject


treated in almost identical terms in Asv. Sr. X, 7, 1 ff.
again atharva//o veda/ and arigiraso veda// are treated indi.

ghoram atharvawo

is

and again the former is correlated with bhesha^am,


the latter with ghoram 3 Once more this theme is handled
vidually,

Max Miiller, History of Ancient Sanskrit Literature, p. 40 ff.


atharvavedo veda// so*yam iti bhesha^aw nigadet
.
ahgiraso vedo veda/*

Cf.

so * yam
3

14,

iti

ghoraw nigadet.
Scholiast, ghoram iti abhiX-aradipratipadakam

mS no

ghorewa batata* bhi dhrz'shwu.

ity artha//.

Cf.

RV. X,

34,

INTRODUCTION.
by the

Br. XIII, 4, 3, 3

.Sat.

aiigiras are

ff.

here also atharvan and

recognised individually

bhesha^am and ghoram

XXI

the correlation with

wanting, but the individuality


clearly implied in the behest to

is

of the two categories is


on the third and fourth days respectively one section
each of the Atharvans and the Aiigiras, each of which are
recite

distinctly said to

be a Veda \

yet significant testimony that this double


of
the AV. was clearly established in Brahmancharacter
Indirect,

times

ical

may be

derived from the formation of the names

One is Bhisha^ Atharvawa.


of two apocryphal teachers.
Kkth. S. XVI, 3 (Ind. Stud. Ill, 4.59); the other is Ghora
Asv. Sr. XII, 13, 1 A7/and.
Aiigirasa, Kaush. Br. XXX, 6
-

Up.

Ill, 17, 6 (cf. Ind.

Bhisha^- Atharvawa

is

The formation
190, 293).
illustrated further by Fank. Br. XII,
Stud.

I,

va atharvawani

9, 10, bhesha^-a;//

and XVI,

10, 10,

bhesha-

gz.m vai devanam atharva/zo bheshayayai*va*rish/yai-;


cf. also the expressions sdiViyxx atharva;/a, personified as
I, 2, 18, and atharvabhi// ^anta//, Kam\
names
These
never, as far as is known, occur in
125, 2
is
no Bhisha^- Aiigirasa, and no Ghora
there
inverted order
Atharvawa they reflect perfectly the individual character
and the individual function of the two members of the

a sage, Gop. Br.


3

compound
It

atharvarigirasa//.

seems now, further, that the texts of the Atharvasa//mita mark this same distinction with no

angiras in
the Atharvasawhita.

At AV. XI, 6, 14, four


touch.
Vedic mantra-categories are indicated by the
ai \
expressions, rika.h, samani, bhesha^a(ni), and
uncertain

him

ya^uwshi. The choice of the word bhesha^a is certainly


The passage appeals to the auspieclectic and one-sided.
atharvawam eka/ parva vya/aksha//a//
angiraso
angirasam ekaw parva vya^akshawa//. Elsewhere, aside fiom the
Atharvan texts, the component parts of the dvandva atharvarigiras are drawn
asunder, but without accessory statements; thus Tait. Br. Ill, 12, 9,
1

atharvao vedaA

veda/z

Nr/siwhapurvatapani Up.
2

5, 9.

converse statement like bhesha^a;

va

ai'igirasani,

is, if

we judge

the matter

of anywhere in Hindu literature.


aright, a counter-sense, and unheard
So also .Santi, as the wife of Atharvan see Wilson's translation of the
:i

Vishttu-purawa,

I,

110, 200;

Bhagavata-purawa

III, 24, 24.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

XX11

cious side of the holy texts, and naturally chooses the


Its precise comauspicious aspect of the Atharvan also.
is 5at. Br. X, 5, 2, 20.
Here, after correlating
plement

the adhvaryu-priests with the yagn/i, the /zandoga-priests


with the saman, the bahvrz'/t'as with the uktha (rz'k), the

author presents yatu,

'

and the

yatuvida/z, 'those
skilled in sorcery,' as representatives of the fourth Veda.

The bhesha^a

of the

present passage,

name

sorcery,'

Atharvan passage, and the yatu of the


together what is embraced in the

make up

atharvarigirasa/z

(AV. X,

7, 20).

Moreover, the

Sa//z-

hita exhibits a decided predilection, bordering on rigorous


distinction, for associating the term ahgirasa with aggressive

Thus VIII,

witchcraft, or the practice of spells (kr/tya).


5, 9, krz'tya angirasi'/z

\\k\h krz'tya'

X,

1, 6,

prati^iha angirasa/z

akrz'tya*mun krz'tyakrz'to ^ahi

XII,

5,

pra52,

adadanam angirasi brahma^yam upa dasaya cf. also VI,


In XI, 4, 16 (cf. also VIII, 7, 17)
45, 3 = RV. X, 164, 4.
;

the distinction between Atharvanic and Arigirasic plants


appears again, not, however, in any connection which con-

veys of necessity the contrast between 'holy' and 'witchcraft


But it may do so. This, it will be rememplants.
it formed the
bered, is made in Vait. Su. 5, 10
starting
'

point for the present enquiry, and the chain of evidence


extending through the Atharvanic and Brahmanical litera-

We may add
Pamish/a hymns, AV. XIX, 22 and

ture seems thus to be linked.


late

in

repeated

Ath. Pam.

finally that the

23, which are


the tract entitled Vedavratasya^de^anavidhi,
46, 9 and 10, deal with and state subdivisions

of ahgirasa and atharvazza-texts, each separately l


The
statements are but faintly applicable to the existing redactions of the Atharvan, the >Saunakiya, and Paippalada.

.vakhas

2
,

but

apocryphal.

we should be slow to condemn them as wholly


The Gop. Br. I, 1, 5 and 8 also narrates in its

own

style of unbridled Brahmanical fancy the separate


creation by Brahman of the i^z'shis Atharvan and

Ahgiras,

angirasaViam adyai// paHnuvakai// svaha (XIX, 22, 1); sarvebhyo


Migirobhyovidagaebhya/;svaha(XIX, 22, 18); atharvawalnaw katmrikebhya/i
sva'ha
2

XIX,

Cf.

23, 1).

Weber, Ind. Stud. IV, 433

ff.

INTRODUCTION.

XX111

the subsequent emanation from these two of twenty Atharvanic and Ahgirasic descendant sages \ and finally, the production by the Atharvans of the atharva//a veda, by the

Ahgiras of ahgirasa vcda.


In another passage, I, 3,

4,

the Gop. Br. also asserts the

separate character of the Ahgiras and Atharvans the latter


are again associated with bhesha^am, the former is made
;

the base of a foolish

brahma yad

etymology, to wit

bhuyish/V/a;//

ye*iigiraso ye^hgiraso sa
rasa//, ye*tharva//o ye*tharva//as tad bhesha^am.
As regards the chronology and cause of this differentia-

bhr/gvahgirasa//,

tion of
Cause of the

.,

..

Ihe association 01
apparently wholly silent.
both names (and later of the name bhrz'sai
also) with the texts and practices of the

differentiation

of atharvan

and

atharvan and ahgiras the texts are

angiras.

Veda may be sought in the


mythic beings. They are fire-priests,

fourth

the Atharvanic

rites,

character of these
fire-churners

2
,

and

as well as the house-ceremonies in

general, centre about the fire, the oblations are into the
fire.
Fire-priests, in distinction from soma-priests, may

have had

keeping these homelier practices of


But
life.
whence the terrible aspect of the AhIn the
contrast to the auspicious Atharvans ?

common
giras in

hymn

their

in

about Sarama and the

Pa//is,

RV. X,

108, 10,

Sarama

threatens the Pa//is with the terrible Ahgiras, ahgirasa.?

fca.

seems

to

This statement, wholly incidental as


ghora//.
be, is, of course, not to be entirely discarded.

it

More im-

Br/haspati, the divine purodha


In Kaiu. 135, 9, Br/'hasdistinctly ahgirasa.
(purohita),
as
the representative, or
pati Ahgirasa appears distinctly

portant

is

the fact

that

is

the divinity of witchcraft performances.

In the

Mahabha-

he is frequently called ahgirasa?// jresh/V/a//.


function of body-priest of the gods it behoves

rata

Doubtless by

way

In his

him

to

of allusion to the twenty books in the existing redaction

The expression vi;.rino irigirasa/j is rep ated Paw.


of the .S'aunakiya-.rakha.
V, 2, 37, as a designation of the twenty books of the .Saunakiya-^akha in its
present redaction.
2

Avestan

atar-,

athra-van and Vedic athar-van

may

be derivatives from the

root manth, math (mth) 'churn.'


But the absence of the aspiration in atarmakes the doubtful derivation still more doubtful.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

XXIV

exercise against hostile powers those fierce qualities which


are later in a broader sense regarded as Arigirasic.
Thus

RV. X, 164, 4
AV. VI, 45, 3 1 certainly exhibits this
function of the divine purohita, and the composer of AV.
X, i, 6, when he exclaims, Prati^ina ( Back-hurler") the
,

:i

'

descendant of Ahgiras, is our overseer and officiator (purodo thou drive back again (pratii/;) the spells, and

hita)

slay yonder fashioners of the spells,' has also in mind the


divine purohita 2
The stanza foreshadows the later forma.

tion praty ahgiras, discussed above.


ever, for statements of the reason

We
why

in vain, howword atharvan

look
the

should be especially associated with

and must assume that


contrasting

it

this

santa. and bhesha^a,


was accomplished by secondarily

with ahgiras after the sense of ghora, abhi^ara


itself over it
The uncertainty of all this

had incrustated

:!

does not endanger the result that at a


comparatively early
time the terms atharva/za//, in the sense of
holy charms,'
'

and ahgirasa^, in the sense of witchcraft charms,' joined


the more distinctively hieratic terms rikaM, ya^uwshi, and
'

as

types of Brahmanical literary


But this distinction was at a later period
again abandoned in the end the name atharvan and its
derivatives prevail as designations of the
practices and
charms of the fourth Veda without reference to their
samani,

characteristic

performances.

strongly diversified character.

The stem atharvan


of

ways by

forms

in

is

modulated

in

a considerable variety
itself, or

derivative processes, the simple stem

the singular from

it, being decidedly rare, and not


have noted Nrz'siwhapurvatapani Up. I, 4,
Plural forms are less
r/gya^Ti/rsamatharvarupa// surya/z.
rare: atharvawo veda/i, 5at. Br. XIII, 4,
atharvaram,
3, 7

at all early.

yad

indra

brahmaas pate-bhidrohaw

aramasi,

praeta na ahgiraso

dvishata'w patv awhasa^.


5

RV. IV, 50, 7-9 prescribes that kings shall


keep in honour (subhr/tam)
a brz'haspati, i. e. a Brahman purohita, in archaic
language whose sense coincides
completely with the later Atharvanic notions. Barring the diction the passage
might stand in any Atharva-ParLnsh/a cf. below, p. lxviii, note.
3
A dash of popular etymology may have helped the process a-tharvan,
'not injuring;' cf. thurv in the sense of
'injure,' Dhatupa///a XV, 62, and
perhaps Maitr. S. II, 10, 1 also the roots turv and dhfirv with similar meanings.
;

XXV

INTRODUCTION.

TB.

12, 9,

Ill,,

from

AV.XIX,

23,

rita-sawhita. III,

The same

XVI,

atharva//a//, Vs.uk. Br.

derivative neuter plural atharva;/ani


1

10, 10.

The

suktani) is common,
Pa;7. Br. XII, 9, 10 to Vr/ddhaha-

45 (^ivananda,

(sc.

vol.

i,

p.

213),

and

later.

the masculine singular,


atharva;/aj- (sc. veda//) /aturtha/, AV/and. Up. VII, 1, 2. 4:
in the plural, mantra atharvawa/^, Ram. II, 26, 21.
2,
7, 1
stem, atharva;/a,

is

used

in

The stem

atharva;/a (without vr/ddhi of derivation) is found


Nr/siwhapurvatapani Up. II, 1, atharva^air mantrai//

Mahabh.

Ill,

another

Still

14

189,

==

derivative

12963,
is

atharvawa//
in

atharva//a,

(sc.

veda/^).

atharva//a-vid,

The name atharva-veda


342, 100=13259.
appears about as early as the corresponding names of the
other Vedic categories (r/gveda. &c), vSarikh. Sr. XVI, 2,
Mahabh. XII,

10; Par. G;/h.


IV,

II, 1, 7;

Hir. Gr/h. II, 19, 6; Baudh. Grih.


in the Cainist Siddhanta is

The form employed

5, 1.

a(t)havva//a-veda (see below, p.


scriptures

athabbawa-veda

is

lvi)

that of the Buddhist

(ibid.).

In addition to the designations of the Atharvan discussed


above there are still others, based upon different modes of
Other

viewing this heterogeneous collection of Mantras.

fourth

single passage, Sat. Br. XIV, 8, 14, 1-4 =


Bnh. Ar. Up. V, 13, 1-4, seems to hint at the
Veda with the word kshatram.
The passage is

designations

engaged

in

pointing out the merits of Vedic compositions,


uktham ( = rik cf. .S'at. Br. X, 5, 2, 20),

stated in the series


ya^u//,

sama, kshatram.

Inasmuch

as the

first

three ob-

is possible to view
trayi vidya,
kshatram as epitomising the Atharvan 1
If so, the passage
is of considerable interest, as it seems to view the fourth

viously represent the

it

Veda

as the

Veda

of the Kshatriyas.

passage substitutes the act of kshatra,

More
i.e.

precisely the

the characteristic

performances of the Kshatriya (through, or with the aid of


1

Cf. also Praxna

Up.

II, 6,

represent in the epics the best


'

where brahma and kshatra figure. Both together


outcome of the life of a kshatriya, piety ami
'

'

possible to conceive the appearance of kshatra alone as an


both brahma and kshatra, the two together being the outcome of the trayi preceding, rather than a supplementary statement of additional
Vetlic types of composition
cf. Pra^na Up. II, 6.
For brahma alone, see below,
prowess.'

It is

elliptic version of

p. xxxi, note.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

XXVI

Atharvanic by distinction. Recently Prohas emphasised the marked relation of the


Atharvan to the royal caste.
his purohita) as

fessor

Weber x

The

text of the Sawhita abounds in ra^akarmawi, royal


practices,' and Weber thinks that the name of Kaiuika, the
'

author of the great Atharvan Sutra, points to a Kshatriya


connection, since Kuj-ika is identical with Vi.yvamitra, and
the latter, as is well known, stands forth among the ancient

Vedic heroes as the representative of royalty. None of


these points can be regarded as more than possibilities 2
.

Two

other designations of the AV. differ from all the


preceding in that they are the product of a later Atharvanic

literary age, neither of them being found in the


Sawmita, and both being almost wholly restricted to the
ritual text of the Atharvan itself.
They are the terms

and brahma-veda.

bh/'/gvangirasa/r

The term

bhr/gvaiigirasa/^

is,

as far as the evidence of

the accessible literature goes, found only in Atharvan texts.


Though bhr/gu takes in this compound the place of atharvan.
the terms bhr/gava/^ or bhr/guveda do not occur.
The
term bhr/gvarigirasa//, however, is the favourite designation
of the Veda in the Atharvan ritual texts 3 it makes a show,
:

crowding out the other designations. Thus the


Kaiuika does not directly mention the Atharvan compositions by any other name
(see 63, 3; 94, 2-4; cf. 137, 25;
in fact, of

139, 6), although vaguer allusions to this Veda and


adherents are made with the stem atharvan (59, 25 73,
;

ini

Episches
July 23, 1891

vedischen Ritual, Proc. of the Royal

nr. xxxviii, p.

785

ff.

Academy

(especially 787, top);

at

its
1

Berlin,

Ra^asuya, pp.

4,

23, note.
2
We may note also the prominence allowed in the AV. to the kind of
performance called sava. These are elaborate and rather pompous bestowals of
or
dakshiwa, rising as high as the presentation of a house i^alasava, IX, 3)
a goat with five messes of porridge, five cows, five pieces of gold, and five
garments (a^audana, IX, 4). There are twenty-two kinds of these sava, and
the eighth book of the Kaiuika is devoted to their exposition (Kej-ava 64-66
;

Revenues of this kind are not likely to


presents a brief catalogue of them).
have been derived from lesser personages than rich Kshatriyas, or kings.
3
In the Sawhita the stem bhr/gvahgiras is never employed as the name of
the Atharvan writings in AV. V, 19, 1.
names of typical Brahman priests.
;

as the

the terms bh/z'gu and ahgirasa occur

XXVlt

INTRODUCTION.

The term

also occurs in Vait. Su.

1, 5
Gop. Br.
and it is common in the
Pamish/as (see Weber, Omina und Portenta, p. 346
Verzeichniss der Sanskrit und Prakrit Handschriften, II,
No valid reason appears
89 fif.), and the Anukramawi.
has
in encroaching so far
the
succeeded
term
why
bhr/gu
the
term
atharvan.
The
upon
following may, however, be
remarked. The three words atharvan, aiigiras, and bhr/gu
are in general equivalent, or closely related mythic names

125, 2.)

I,

1,

39

2,

18 (end);

3, 1. 2.

4,

fif.

connection with the production or the service of fire.


Occasionally in the mantras (RV. X, 14, 6) they are found
all together 1 or bhr/gu is found in
company with atharvan
in

(RV. X,

(RV. VIII, 43, 13). This


names continues in the Ya^us and

92, 10), or with ahgiras

interrelation of the three

Brahmawa-texts, but in such a way that the juxtaposition


and arigiras becomes exceedingly frequent 2

of bhr/gu

broaching
reached in

on complete synonymy. The latter


Br. IV, 1, 5, 1, where the sage iTyavana

in fact
.Sat.

is

is

3
It
Bhargava or as an Angirasa
is conceivable that the
of
this
collocation
frequency
suggested to the Atharvavedins a mode of freshening up the

designated either as a

more

trite

combination atharvangirasa/^

a conscious preference of the

no trace

of any reason for


word bhr/gu the texts show
;

4
.

The term brahma-veda whose

origin is discussed below


likewise
to
the
(p. Ixv)
belongs
sphere of the Atharvan
ritual.
Outside of the Atharvan there is to be noted only

a single, but indubitable occurrence, 5ahkh. Gr/h.

Cf.

Weber, Verzeichniss,

I,

6, 3.

II, 46.

E.g. Tait. S. I, 1, 7, 2; Maitr.S. I, 1, 8; Ykg. S. I, iS Tait. Br. I, 1,4,8;


III, 2, 7, 6; .Sat. Br. I, 2, 1, 13
Katy. St. II, 4, 38
Apast. .S'r. I, 12,3; 23, 6
Yaska's Nigh.V, 5 Nir. XI, 18.
The juxtaposition of bhr/gu and atharvan
is
decidedly rarer in this class of texts (e.g. Apast. St. IV, 12, 10); that of
blm'gu and angiras continues in the Mahabharata, and later see Pet. Lex. s. v.
;

(col. 364, top).


3

Cf. similarly DadhyaM Atharvawa, Tait. S. V, 1, 4, 4, with Dadhya/7/Angirasa, Tank. Br. XII, 8, 6.
4
A statement like that of the late Aulika Upanishad 10, that the Bhr/gu are
foremost among the Athaivans (atharvao bhr/guttama//), if it is taken
seriously at all, reflects rather the result than the cause of the substitution of the

name bhr/gu

for atharvan.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

XXV111

Even in the Atharvan Upanishads the term is wanting 1


The earliest occurrences of the word, aside from vSaiikh.
The word is
Grih., are Vait. Su. 1, I; Gop. Br. I, 2, 16.
common in the Paruish/as.
.

We may

note finally the terms pa/7akalpa and pankanot refer directly to the Sawhitas of the

They do

kalpin.

AV., but are both bahuvrihi-compounds designating 'one


who practises with the five kalpas of the AV.,' i.e. Atharvan
Thus the words were first explained by the author,
priests.
Journ. Amer. Or. Soc. XI. 378
Kaiuika, Introduction,
Cf. also Magoun, The Asuri-kalpa, Amer. Journ.
p. lvii.
;

Phil. X, 169.
They are very late they do not occur in the
Sutras or Brahma//a of the AV., nor, as far as is known,
in the literature proper of that Veda.
They appear as the
:

of scribes of Atharvan texts, see Kauyika, Introduction, p. ix


Weber, Verzeichniss der Sanskrit und Prakrit
titles

But they are sufficiently attested


Handschriften, II, 96.
outside of the Atharvan, in the expression, pa/Xakalpam
atharva;/am, Mahabh. XII. 342, 99 = 13258, and in the

Mahabhashya

The

II.

(Ind. Stud. XIII, 455).

position of the

Hindu Literature

Atharva-veda
in

in

general.

In addressing oneself to the task of


characterising the
estimate which the Hindus placed upon the Atharvan
Statement
of the

texts ar>d practices, it is especially needful to


take a broad, if possible a universal view, of

the statements of the Vedic and mediaeval


texts

Up.

bearing

The word
;

upon

the

The Atharvan

question.

occurs in certain doubtful variants of the text of the

see Ind. Stud.

I,

301, note.

In

Ram

I,

is

MuWaka

brahmaveda is contrasted
=
39 988 brahma veda with

65, 22

with kshatraveda, just as at Mahabh. VII, 23,


dhanurveda. In such cases the word brahma is not to be referred
pregnantly to the
fourth Veda, but to Brahmanic
religion in general represented by the first caste,
the science of war being in the hands of the second, or warrior-caste. Cf. below,
p. xlii.

The word biahmavid, Mahabh. Ill, 2625 (Nala 14, 18, brahmarshi\
mean skilled in sorcery,' and may contain an allusion to

however, seems to
the

AV.

'

INTRODUCTION.
a

sacred

text

more than one respect

in

the materials which


vedas,

many

of

its

(bhesha^a) and are


these, as

we

XXIX
:

aside

from

shares with the Rig- and Ya^urhymns and practices are benevolent
it

in

shall see,

general well regarded, though even

do not altogether escape the

blight

of contempt.
Many hymns of the AV. are theosophic in
character on whatsoever ground they found shelter in the
Atharvan collectiolis they cannot have been otherwise than
:

The

charms designed to establish


harmony in family and village life and reconciliation of
enemies (the so-called sa7//manasyani, p. 134 ff.), and the

highly esteemed.

class of

royal ceremonies (ra^akarmawi), are obviously auspicious in


Even the sorceries of the Atharvan neces-

their nature.
sarily

show

a double face

they are useful to oneself, harmful

According as they are employed objectively and


aggressively, they are a valuable and forceful instrument
to others.

and aggrandisement of him that employs


according as one suffers from them subjectively and
This conpassively, they are dreadful and contemptible.
flict of emotions lasts throughout the history of the recorded
Hindu thought the colour of the Atharvan remains changeable to the end, and is so described in the final orthodox
and stereotyped view that it is used to appease, to bless,
and to curse 1
The fact, however, is that there must have
for the benefit

them

'

.'

arisen in the long run a strong wave of popular aversion


against the Veda, whose most salient teaching is sorcery.

This appears from the discussions of the Hindus themselves


2
from the conscious
orthodoxy of that Veda

as to the

Atharvan writings to vindicate its character and value


from the allegorical presentation of the
Atharvan as a lean black man, sharp, irascible, and
amorous 3
and many occasional statements of the Vedic
and classical texts. The history of the relation of the
Atharvan to the remaining Hindu literature is, however,
efforts of the later
;

'

'

I,

jantikapaush/ikabhiHradipratip&daka, Madhusudanasarasvati (Ind. Stud.


Kcrava to Kaiu. 1,1; Deva to Katy. Sr. XV, 7, 11, and elsewhere.

16)
2

According to Burnell, Vaw5abrahmaa of the Samaveda, p. xxi, the most


influential scholars of Southern India still deny the genuineness of the Atharvan.
3
Ragendralalamitra in the Introduction to the Gopatha-brahmawa, p. 4.

XXX
still

HYMNS OF THE ATHAKVA-VEDA.


unwritten, and the following pages aim to supply the

necessary data.
In the hymn to the Purusha, the primaeval cosmic man
(RV. X, 90, 9), the three Vedic categories, rik&h samani
.

Position of
the AV. in
the Rigveda.

yaguh, are mentioned

.
,.
JA
Avvandawsi,

or

canons,

a fourth term.

generic, embodying the metrical


the metrical compositions
as a
*

is

opportunity to mention the


Atharvan is neglected *.
The names atharvan, arigiras,
and bhrz'gu. which occur frequently elsewhere in the RV.,
designate mythic personages, intimately connected with the
production of the fire, and the soma-sacrifice nowhere do
they seem to refer to any kind of literary composition.
whole, but the

Even the expression brahma/n, used

in

connection with

atharvan, RV. I, 80, 16, can claim no special interest, because, as will appear later (p. lxvi), the word brahma is
never used as a specific designation of Atharvan charms.

No

great importance is to be attached to this silence the


praises to the gods in connection with the great somasacrifices, with their prevailing mythical colouring, darkened
;

very often by priestly mysticism, offer but scant occasion


for the mention of sorcery, or the plainer practices of everyday life. Yet sorcery and house-practices there were in
India at

all

times

The

failure of the

Rig-veda to mention

any systematic redaction of charms by a collective name


must be gauged by the slenderness of

like atharvangirasa/*
its
(cf.

opportunities to mention the Veda as a generic name


VIII, 19, 5), or Vedic collections or redactions in par-

ticular (X, 90, 9)

There

is

no proof that even the oldest

For RV. X, 71, 11, which also hints at the three Vedic types, and the
that embraces them all, see the full discussion below, p. lxiv ff.
Cf. e. g., RV. I, 191
VII, 50, and especially VII, 104, 16.

brahma
2

The familiar mention of compositions


.rastra, &c, does not, it is important to note,
types of poetic productivity

called rik, saman, uktha, stotra,


refer to collections at all, but to

they are moreover

all

of

them such

as were dis-

Their presence simply accentuates


tinctly connected with the soma-sacrifice.
the preoccupation of the body of the Rig-vedic collection with the great priestly
sacrifices,

and the consequent absence of the more general terms for Vedic
The stem ya^u/z, in the sense of collection of formulas of

classes of writings.

the Ya^ur-veda, occurs only in the above-mentioned passage, X, 90,

9.

XXXI

INTRODUCTION.

parts of the RV., or the most ancient Hindu tradition


accessible historically, exclude the existence of the class
entitled to any of the names given to the
Atharvan charms there is no evidence that these writings
ever differed in form (metre) or style from those in the
and, finally, there is no
existing Atharvan redactions
evidence
the
barring
positive
argumentum ex silentio

of writings

names current in other texts as designations of


Atharvan hymns (bhesha^ani, atharvawa//, angirasa/^, &c.)
were unknown at the earliest period of literary activity.

that the

On the other hand, the existing redactions of the AV.


betray themselves as later than the RV. redaction by the
character of the variants in those mantras which they share
with the

RV.

As

regards the AV., the stanza X, 7, 20 presents the


four Vedic categories, rika.li, ya^u/z, samani, and atharvahg' rasa/^j tne ^ as ^ the traditional name of the
Position of
the AV. in
of the

The same tetrad

.Saunakiya-version.

at

XI,

6, 14,

is

intended

where the narrower term bhesha-

takes the place of atharvarigirasa/^.


At
sawhita.
v
IX, 54, 5 the mention of atharvan and
angiras, though not directly referable to the AV., certainly
Saunaktva-

-a(ni)

X v

suggests it, because stanza 3 speaks in the same strain of


the rikdji and yzguh and in XIX, 22, 1
23, 1 (pamishfa
in character
cf. above, p.
the
xxii),
arigirasani and athar;

vawani (sc suktani) are mentioned separately.

Otherwise

name for the type of


literature known later as Atharvanic l
The Atharvan is
very much in the same position as we shall find the Ya^"us-

this text also fails to present a fixed

the three Vedas are mentioned, often in connection


with other more specific forms and designations of prayer
and sacerdotal acts, but the Atharvan is omitted. The
texts

impression

left in

both cases

is

by no means

that of con-

scious neglect or contempt, but rather of esoteric restriction


to the sphere of the great Vedic ritual (.srauta) 2
Thus
.

The word brahma which is catalogued with the trayi at XI, 8, 23 XV. 6, 3
XV, 3, 7) does not refer to the Atharvan, but is the broader and higher
term for religious activity in general. Cf. RV. X, 71, 11, and see below, p. Ixvi.
1

(cf.

also

E. g. in the very same

hymn

(X,

7,

14) in

which the Atharvangirasa/* are

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

XXXll

it

augurs no contempt or neglect of the Atharvan, if in


charm constructed for the purpose of obtaining a know-

ledge of the Vedas, AV. VII, 54 (Kau^. 42, 9), only rtk,
saman, yagu/i, veda, and oblation (havi/i) are mentioned
the person who here desires Vedic learning is not in training
:

for Atharvan priesthood, and therefore does not take care


1
And similarly a conto include this specialistic learning
siderable number of additional Atharvan passages, IX, 6,
.

23 XII, 1, 38 XV, 3, 6-8 6, 3, in


which the Atharvan is not mentioned with the other Vedic
1.

XI,

7, 5.

24;

8,

compositions, betray no sign of conscious exclusion or contempt of the Atharvan. On the other hand, this very

omission ensures the interesting result that the Sa;;/hita


of the AV., unlike its ritualistic adjuncts (see p. lvii fif.),
is in no wise engaged either in self-glorification, or in

polemics against the other Vedas. It seems altogether


evident that the Atharvan diaskeuasts were totally uncon-

any disadvantages inherent in their text, or any


contemptuous treatment on the part of the adherents of
scious of

the other Vedas.

In addition to the explicit designation of the Atharvan


compositions as atharvangirasa/^, bhesha^ani, atharva//ani,
&c, there is to be noted in the .Saunakiya-text of the

hymns

a decided advance in the association of the names

Atharvan, Aiigiras, and Bhr/gu with the practices and


The older,
conditions which these hymns are aimed at.
broader, and vaguer mythic personality of all three which
X, 14, 6 ( = AV. XVIII,
appears, e.g. in RV. VIII, 43, t 3
;

58); X, 92, 10,

t,

is

still

continued

in

the Atharvan (VI,

6, 13; XVI,
11-14): Atharvan, Aiigiras, and
are
at
times
Bhrzgu
simply semi-divine, or wholly divine
1

1,

XI,

8.

mentioned as the fourth Veda the poet lapses into the more familiar traividya,
which, like st. 20, aims to state that the Vedas are derived from

in a stanza

Skambha (Brahma),

a monotheistic personification

cf.

Muir, Original Sanskrit

Texts, V, 378.
1

similar passage in a Sutra of the

RV. (Asv Grih.

Ill, 3,

13), on the

same

occasion, namely, the study of the Veda, does not hesitate to include the
Atharvan along with many other Vedic texts. This does not argue conscious
preference, any
cf.

below, p.

more than the Atharvan passage

xliv.

indicates conscious exclusion

INTRODUCTION.
beings,

whose

office is entirely

XXXlll

But on the

non-Atharvanic.

other hand the Atharvans appear at IV, $J, i as slayers


of the Rakshas (similarly IV, 3, 7)
the Atharvans and
;

Angiras fasten amulets, and consequently slay the Dasyus,


at X, 6, 20
and the name Bhr/gu appears at V, 19, 1 (cf.
TS. I, 8, 18, 1 TB. I, 8, 2, 5) as the typical designation
;

of a Brahma^a, i.e. here, of an Atharvan priest.


Such
specialisations of these names are unknown in the RV.
the evident beginning of the assoangirasa with aggressive witchcraft or
is

Especially noteworthy
ciation of the
spells,

name

and the somewhat

tion of the stem

above,

p. xviii

less clear

corresponding correla-

atharvaz/a with auspicious charms (see


Altogether the impression arises that

ff.).

the names Atharvan, Angiras, and Bhr/gu, connected with


the redaction of the AV., have in the text of that Veda

assumed, or commenced to assume, the

which the

office

diaskeuast and the ritualistic texts of the Atharvan have

and permanently bestowed upon them.

definitely

In the domain of the


in

.rruti, exclusive of the Rig-veda, i. e.


the Ya^*us-sa;//hitas, and the Brahmawas, the position
of the Atharvan is on the whole defined with

Position of
the AV. in
the rest of
the miti.

rr

It depends altogether on
p rac tical character of these texts as exponents of the great Vedic sacrifices, the

sufficient clearness.
t j le

srauta-performances

these,

their very nature, exclude

by

the systematic charms of the


abhiarika//i.
Such sorcery as is inter-

direct interest in

any very

bhesha^ani and
woven with the jrauta-performances has acquired independent expression in the metrical and prose formulas
the Ya^us-sawhitas
it figures in the form and
by the
;

name

of sacrificial formulas

Veda

threefold

vidya).

(trayi

(ya^urashi) as part of the


Thus the subject-matter

of formulas like the following


I dig
(pits) that slay the
Rakshas, destroy the spells that belong to Vishnu ; that
spell here which my equal or unequal has dug into (the
'

ground) do I cast out I make subject here


my unequal that plans hostile schemes against
Maitr. S. I, 2, 10.
I, 3, 2, 1
VI, 2, 11, 1.2
;

V, 23

ff.

[42]

my
me

5at. Br. Ill, 5, 4, 8

ff.),

is

by

its

11

equal or
'

(Tait. S.
Va^. S.

very terms

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

XXXIV

Atharvanic, and the practices by which its recitation is


supplemented might be described in the Kamika-sutra.

The formula yo asman


'

he that hates us and

the

dvesh/i yaw/ ka.


whom we hate

occurs countless times

like),

at the practices of private

dvishma//,

or

perish,

(shall

the Ya^us-texts, as well


The aims and the acts of
in

Atharvan charms.
the Atharvan are present at the Vedic

as in the

vayaw
'

life

sacrifice, as well as

the difference

the

in

lies

degree of applicability, and the degree of prominence

in

the jruti-literature the sphere of the Atharvan is restricted


to matters that are incidental and subsidiary, intended

merely to pave the way

for the

main

the successful

issue,

dispatching of the sacrifice to the gods, and the undisturbed gratification of the priests (the ish/am and the purUnder these circumstances and at such a time
tam).

pronounced
paradox, too

mawas
that

is

hostility against the Atharvan would


silly even for the Ya^-us-texts and the

be a

Brah-

no such hostility or repugnance is in evidence


reserved for a later and more reflective age.

first place then, the mythic personages Atharvan,


Ahgiras, and Bhr/gu, whose proper names in the course
of time are growingly restricted to the sphere of the
Atharvan, continue in their pristine position of demi-gods.

In the

At

Maitr. S.

I, 6,

the Ahgiras are

tva devana;/z vratena

dadhe

still

gods, ahgirasawz
similarly Tait. Br. I, 1,4, 8,

bhr/gu;/a;// tva*rigirasa;// vratapate vratena*dadhami


also Tait. Br. Ill, 2, 7, 6 ; Maitr. S. I, 1, 8
Vag. S.
;

18 (Sat. Br.
11, 7-

Br.

I,

I, 2,

i,

13

Katy. St.

II,

merable other instances.


of the three

divinities,

I,

4,38); Apast. Sr. V,

For Atharvan, see Tait. S. V, 1, 4, 3


1, 10, 4
XI, 32.
Va^. S. VIII, 56
;

cf.

6, 6,

And

Tait.
3
so innu\

Needless to say, the descendants


conceived

eponymically as the

founders of families of AVshis, the Atharvawa, Ahgirasa,


and Bhargava, enjoy the same rights, and hold the same
position of honour as the other families of AVshis, it being
reserved for the later Atharvan writings to extol them

beyond measure, and to establish them as the typical


teachers 1
Thus Atharvan Daiva is the name of an ancient
.

Cf.

Weber, Omina und Portenta,

p. 347.

XXXV

INTRODUCTION.

Sat

teacher,

Atharvawa,
18

VI,

Br.

XIV,

4, 2,

Anukramam

22

28

Dadhya/}
IV, 1, 5,
the countless Ahgirasa, of which the RV.
3
counts no less than 45 \ e. g. 5at. Br. IV, 1.

Tait. S. V,

5,

I,

4,

5,

6, 6,

7,

3,

.Sat. Br.

Kaush. Br. XXX, 6


Ait. Br. VIII, 21, 13
Apast.
11,7; an d the equally frequent Bhargava, Tait. S.
Sat. Br. ib.
Ait. Br. VIII, 2, 1. 5
Kau^. Br.
I, 8, 1 8, 1
XXII, 4. Occasionally, doubtless, even the j-ruti feels the
connection that has been established between these names
and the sphere of Atharvanic literary activity, as when the
Ka///. S. XVI, 13 mentions a i*?z'shi Bhisha^ Atharva/za 2
the Kaush. Br. XXX, 6,
(see Weber, Ind. Stud. Ill, 459)
5, 1

Sv. V,

a Rishi

Ghora Ahgirasa

states that

when the Tauk. Br. XII, 8, 6


Ahgirasa was the chaplain (puro-

Dadhya/7

or

dhaniya) of the gods.

The manner

in

which the hymns of the Atharvan are

alluded to in the .rrauta-texts

is

as follows.

Ordinarily the

texts are preoccupied with the sacrificial literature in the


narrower sense, and hence devote themselves to the men-

and laudation of the trayi vidya, either without recount-

tion

ing its specific literary varieties, or by fuller citation of


the terms rz'k, saman, yagu/i. For these are substituted not
infrequently other terms like stoma, uktha, .yastra, udgitha.
special liturgical varieties, also derived directly from

&c,

the sphere of the .srauta-performances, and, in fact, strictly


dependent upon these performances for their existence.

On

the other hand, whenever the jrauta-texts mention, or


other literary forms like itihasa,

make draughts upon


purawa,

gatha,

Atharvan
that

sutra,

literature

is

upanishad, and many others, the


almost unfailingly included, and

too almost

traividya

is

the
invariably in the following order
mentioned first, the Atharvan holds the fourth
:

and next follow

place,

in

somewhat

variable arrangement

the types itihasa, &c.


1

Cf.

Weber, Episches im vedischen Ritual, Sitzungsberichte der Koniglieh-

Preussischen

Akadcmie

d.

Wissenschaften zu Berlin, 1S91,

p.

812 (46 of the

reprint).
2

The same apocryphal .AYshi is reported uy the AnukraiTia/ns as the author


hymn to the plants,' RV. X, 97; Vao-. S. XII, 75-S9.
C 2

of the oshadhistuti, 'the

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

XXXVI

Thus the

Taittiriya-sa?;zhita

yaguk alone

at II, 4, 12, 7

1,4

The AV.

12,

,T

in

,,

at II, 4,

the

Taittinyasawhita.

1 1, o,

VI,

1,

to

the expressions samna//, yagu-

and ukthamadanam

s ham,'

saman, and
VII, 3,
2, 4

rik,

same categories are alluded

in

5, 7,

the

mentions

at III,'

2,'

9,
y

5.

"T

in the expressions udgat/7//am (with udgitha),

and adhvaryuz/am

uktha.ra7/zsinam (with rika/i),

ish/aya^usha//, stutastomasya, .rastokthasya at

also

cf.

4, 28, 1.

I,

The

only mention of Atharvan literature is at VII, 5, 1 1, 2,


under the designation arigirasa// (without atharvawa// a ), and
here the text

as follows

is

rtgbhya/z svaha, ya^urbhya//,


svaha, vedebhya/^

svaha, samabhya// svaha, arigirobhya/^

svaha, gathabhya/^ svaha, nanuawsibhya/^


bhya// svaha.

This
the

also, in the

AV.

The AV.

the

in

main,

in

Either the term

Satapathabrahma/;a.

'

'

2
*_7
'

1,1,8;
4; IX,

the nature of the references to

5atapatha-brahmawa.

trayi vidya is used, or rik, saman, and yagu/i


,.
,
T
TT
are mentioned explicitly: I, 1, 4, 2. 3; II,

the

2,

is

svaha, raibhi-

5, 2,

TV67I2-V^^IQ-VI
*
*
5 &
iV

'

'

'

3, 1, 10. 11.

20

4, 2, 21.

22;

T2; X,

"

'

VII,

5, 2,

'

5, 2,
1.

'

'

52

2; XI,

'

VIII,
5, 4,

'

5,

18;

8, 3-7; XII, 3, 3, 2
4, 9
XIV, 4,3, 12 8, 15, 2. 9. In all
these cases there is no mention of the Atharvan but neither
;

there any mention of any other literary type that has


a distinctive standing outside of the trayi vidya.
On the
is

other hand, the Atharvan

is

mentioned

in

number

of cases,

every one of which presents also a lengthy list of additional literary forms.
Thus XI, 5, 6, 4-8, rikah, ya^uwshi,
samani, atharvarigirasa/?, anu^asanani. vidya, vakovakyam,
XIII, 4, 3, 3 ff., riko
itihasapura/^am, gatha narasamsyah
;

vtdah, ya^uwshi veda//, atharvawo veda//, arigiraso w&da/i,

sarpavidya

\edah,

itihaso veda//.

deva^anavidya veda/^, maya \edah,


veda/;, samani vedah
XIV, 5, 4,

purawaw

(=Brzh. Ar. II, 4, 10; IV, 1, 2;


5, 11),
r/gvedo yagurvedah samavedo*tharvangirasa itiha.sa/1 ^wxanam
vidya upanishadaZ: s\oka/i sutra/zy anuvyakhyanani vyakhyanani X. 5, 2, 20, adhvaryava// (yagu/i),
10;

6,

10,

6;

7, 3,

11

Ct. above, p. xviii.

XXXV11

INTRODUCTION.

//andoga// (saman), bahvrtfca./i (uktham). yatuvida/2 (yatu).


Only a single Upanishad
deva^anavida//.
sarpavida//
.

XIV, 8, 14, 1-4 ( = B/-?'h. Ar. Up. V, 13, 1-4).


seems to mention, or rather hint at. the Atharvan in conpassage,

nection with representatives of the trayi vidya, without


The series is uktham, ya^u//.
mentioning other texts \
tlie passage possibly views the fourth
sama, kshatram
;

Veda

Veda

as the

of the Kshatriyas, or,

substitutes the act of kshatra,

kshatriya as Atharvanic
above.

The
once

in

by

e.

more

precisely,

the performances of the


Sec. for this, p. xxv,

distinction.

Taittiriya-brahma//a mentions the Atharvan twice.


accordance with the method described above, at
III. 12,

8,

2,

'

ngirasa^

he

riko ya^-uwshi samani atharvaIn the other


itihasapunbvam.

passage, III, 12, 9, I, the Atharvan is menbrahmawa.


tioned without the customary adjuncts, and
that too before the Sama-veda. to wit. rikkm pra^i
Taittinya-

mahati dig u^yate, dakshiwam ahur ya^usham aparam.


atharvawam arigirasa;/* prati^i, samnam udii mahati dig
uyate. But it is of interest to note that in the sequel,
where sundry symbolic and mystic correlations of the
Vedas with the sun, &c, are established, the Atharvan is
wanting, and the operations take place with vedais tribhi//.
Thus, rigbhik purvahne divi deva iyate, ya^urvede tish///ati

madhye

alma//,

samavedena^stamaye mahiyate,

vedair

We

shall not err in judging


a^-unyas tribhir eti surya//.
that the fourth Veda is mentioned in a purely formulaic

manner, only because

it is

needed to

fill

out the scheme of

the real theme at


the four principal directions of space
the heart of the author is the traividya, as, e. g. in III, 10,
;

ii, 5. 6.

On

the other hand,

neous to assume either

it

would be altogether erro-

hostility, or conscious discrimina-

The Taittiriya-ara;/yaka again


tion against the Atharvan
falls into line in two passages, II, 9 and 10, presenting the
texts

in

their

most expansive form,

7'ika/i,

yag&tnshi,

Conversely the trayi is catalogued with other texts (vakovakyam itihacf. the same list
sapurawam), but without the Atharvan, at XI, 5, 7, 6
.S'ahkh. Crih. I, 24, 8.
ft'.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

XXXV111

brahma//ani, itihasan, purawani,


kalpan, gatha/^, narai-awsi/^.
The only mention of the Atharvan as a literary type in

samani, atharvangirasa//,

.S'ahkhayana's 5rauta-sutra

is at XVI, 2, 2 ff., again in the


riko veda/^, ya^urveda/^, atharvaveda^
connection with bhesha^am), aiigiraso veda/^

series,
the remainmg ^rauta-

^j

n connection with ghoram), sarpavidya, ra-

kshovidya, asuravidya, itihasaveda/t,


pura//aA
veda/^, samaveda/^.
Very similarly in Aj-valayana s 5rautasutra X, 7, 1 ff., riko veda// ya^urvedaZ, atharva/^aZ;
veda/^ (with bhesha^am), aiigiraso veda// (with

ghoram),

vishavidya, pua^avidya, asuravidya, purawavidya, itihaso


These passages are essentially idenveda//, samaveda//.

with

tical

wSat.

Br.

XIII,

4,

3,

ff.,

above

their chief

and ahgiras,
respectively as representatives of the auspicious (bhesha^am)
and terrible (ghoram = abhiarikam) activities of this Veda
interest lies in the differentiation of atharvan

In the Pa;Xavi///.s-a-brahma//a, XII, 9,


10, 10, the Atharvan charms are mentioned

above, p. xviii

cf.

10

XVI,

favourably

ff.

bhesha"aw va atharvawani, and bhesha^"a;

vai

devanam

also

XXIII,

atharva;/o

Cf.
bheshayayai*va*rish/yai.
XI, 5 (cf. Ind. Stud. 111,463).
The Va^asaneyi-sa7//hita mentions the traividya (or rik
16, 7;

Ka^.

S.

and saman without yaguh) frequently, IV, 1.9; VIII, 12


XVIII, 9. 29. 67; XX, 12 XXXIV, 5 XXXVI, 9 the
Atharvan is nowhere mentioned in connection with the other
;

Once at XXX, i5 = Tait. Br. 111,4, 1, 11, a woman


that miscarries (avatoka) is devoted to the Atharvans
the
Kaiu. 35, 12 (a
reference, in the light of AV. VI, 17

three.

charm

hymns

to prevent miscarriage), seems to be to Atharvan


or Atharvanic practices.
Otherwise the word athar-

connections that admit of no special, or at


Veda, VIII, 56
Neither is there, as far as is known, any mention

van occurs

any

in

rate obvious, reference to the fourth

XI, 32.

Atharvan in the Maitrayam-sa;hita, the Aitareya


and Kaushitaki-brahma^as. or Katyayana's and La/yaof the

yana's 6rauta-sutras.
The position of the Atharvan

according

to

this

evidence

is

in

the .rrauta-literature

what might be naturally

INTRODUCTION.
expected

no evidence of repugnance or excluis


blended with every sphere of
religious thought and activity, and the only
sane attitude on the part of these texts must

there

is

Witchcraft

siveness.

...

Resume of
the ji-autatexts estimate

AV.

of the

XXXI X

fo

^\\e

of the

recognition
&

literary

products
.

which

are

the

distinction

by

repositories

No one will expect rigid consistency


blows hot and cold from the same mouth

of witchcraft.

witchcraft

according as it is turned towards the inimical forces,


human and demoniac, or is turned by others against oneThe AV. itself
self, it is regarded as useful, or noxious.
the same view by implication: the hymn, II, 12,
hurls the bitterest invective against enemies that endeavour
to thwart one's holy work
this does not prevent one's
takes

own endeavour

to

frustrate

the

the

of

sacrifice

an enemy

ensures

hymn, II, 7,
protection against
(VII, 70);
curses and hostile plots, but does not prevent the existence
of fierce imprecations and curses issued forth subjectively
for the ruin of another (VI, 13 and 37).
It is a question
throughout of

my

The

sorcery, or thy sorcery.

flavour of

and virginal innocency is necessarily absent, and


want crops out in connection with the performances
of yatu even in the RV. (VII, 104, 15. 16), where the writer
exclaims
may I die to-day if I am a sorcerer/ and complains against his enemy who calls him, though he is pure,
holiness
this

'

a sorcerer, and against the real sorcerer

he

who

pretends that
regarded here as

pure.
Though yatu (sorcery)
devilish (cf. e.g. AV. I, 7 and 8), the writer at Sat. Br.
is

is

X,

not prevented from placing the yatuvida//, those


that are skilled in sorcery,' in solemn array with the representatives of the holiest forms of literature, immediately

20

5, 2,

'

is

the

after

bahv7'/^a/^,

Atharvanic

as

And

activity.

exponent of
on the other hand even bhe-

the characteristic

'

sha^am, cure, medicine,' the


Atharvan, though well regarded
off without a sneer.

IV,
gd.ni

6,

2;

.Sat.

'

The

Br. IV,

altruistic

province of the
does not come

in general,

Tait. S. VI, 4, 9, 3

1, 5,

14) says,

(cf.

Maitr. S.

brahmawena bhesha-

na karyam, 'a Brahman shall not practise medicine,'

the reason that

is

assigned being that the physician

is

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

impure, that the practice entails promiscuous, unaristocratic


mingling with men 'men run to the physician' (MS. IV,
:

6, 2, p. 80,

1.

1)

social standing

had produced

And we may

trust that the

canons of

and

literary appreciation of a people that


the best that is to be found in Vedic litera-

altogether, when in the proper mood, to


right value the wretched hocus-pocus of the
bhesha^ani themselves, though these were the best that

ture could not

estimate at

fail

its

the Vedic period had produced for the relief of bodily


ailment.
Yet the Veda without witchcraft would not be
the Veda, and the jrauta-texts are not in the position to
throw stones against the Atharvan.
Moreover it must
not be forgotten that the Atharvan contains in its cosmo-

gonic and theosophic sections more material that undertakes


to present the highest brahmavidya than any other Vedic

Sawhita

below,

(cf.

lution this

p. Ixvi)

was associated with

by whatever
this

literary evo-

sphere of literature

and

incorporated into the redaction, it doubtless contributed to


the floating of the more compact body of sorcery-charms,
and its higher valuation among the more enlightened of the
At any rate, a sober survey of the position of the
people.
Atharvan in the traividya yields the result that this Veda,
while not within the proper sphere of the greater concerns
of Vedic religious life, is considered within its own sphere
as a Veda in perfectly good standing
the question of its
;

relative importance, its authority,

and

its

canonicity

is

not

discussed, nor even suggested.

The
The

AV

naturally somewhat freer in their reference


to the AV., and in the mention of more or

apocryphal Atharvan teachers,

rarely,
in

differ
*"

in

the Upani-

less

Atharvan in the Upanishads does not


from that in the miti in general. Aside
rom t ^ie Atharvan Upanishads, which are

position of the

appear to

and usually

in

the -srauta-literature,
Cf. the

i.

it

is

introduced but

manner prevalent elsewhere


preceded by the tray!, and

the
e.

pugan ya^ayanti, those who


Mahabh. I, 2883, and the gramayajin,
III, 151
and gramaya^aka, Mahabh. Ill, 13355.
See also Vishwu

contempt

sacrifice for a crowd,'

for the pugaya^-wiyaA, ye

Manu

Manu IV, 205,


LXXXII, 12; Gaut. XV,

16.

'

INTRODUCTION.

xli

Thus
of other literary types.
10
Br.
the passages quoted above from Sat.
6,
XIV, 5, 4,
Br/h. Ar. Up. II, 4, 10; IV, 1, 2
5, 11,
10, 6; 7, 3, 11
followed

by a

variable

list

and the Tait. Ar. II, 9 and 10, are of Upanishad character,
and the Maitr. Up. VI, 32 repeats the list of texts stated at

Br/h. Ar. Up., just cited, in precisely the same


Maitr. Up. VI, 33 ( = Maha Up. 2
Atharvajiras 4), has the list r/gya^u//samatharvahgirasa
Br.

.Sat.

The same text

order.

purawam. The AV/and. Up. Ill, 1-4 deals with


rik, yagufc, saman, atharvarigirasa/*-, and itihasapura#ani
same list,
the same text at VII, 1, 2. 4; 2, 1
7, 1, has the
itihasa//

atharvawai-

aturtha//

itihasapura//a//

to

pa/7ama//,

which are added a lengthy series of additional sciences


The Tait. Up. = Tait. Ar. VIII, 3, again, presents
(vidya).
the Atharvan in a formulaic connection, tasya (sc. atmana//)
ya^-ur eva

slra/i,

rig dakshiz/a/'

paksha//, samo*ttara/z pax

There is,
atma, atharvahgirasa/^ ^wkkh&m
as far as is known, no additional mention of the Atharvan
in the non-Atharvanic Upanishads, and it is evident that

ksha/r, adej-a

there

fourth

is

no marked change

Veda

is

handled.

in

the

manner

in

which the

Very much more numerous

are

the instances in which the trayi alone appears see Jacob's


Concordance to the principal Upanishads, under the words
;

ya^-urveda, ya^urmaya, ya^us


rmmaya, rik
samaveda, samamaya, saman. They show that the draughts
upon the Atharvan and the subsequent literary forms are,
in general, made under the excitement of formulaic solem-

77'gveda,

nity

while on the other hand, needless to say. the Upani-

their eye aloft alike from hymn, sacrificial


and
witchcraft charm, have no occasion to condemn
formula,
the Atharvan, aside from that superior attitude of theirs
which implies, and diplomatically expresses condemnation

shads with

of the entire

Even
1

in

Veda

that

is

not brahmavidya.

the Atharvan Upanishads there

This Upanishad belongs to a Yagas- school

is

sounded

in

hence the pre-eminence of the

The Atharvan is here forced into a position of disadvantage, and it


ya^us.
may be admitted that its mention after the ade.ra (Upanishad) is intentional.
But there is really no other course open to the writer. The tenor of the entire
mentioned.
passage excludes the notion of disparagement of any of the texts

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

xlii

general neither the polemic nor the apologetic note which


characterises the ritualistic writings of the Atharvan.

We

be

find, to
if

radic,

tne

Atharvan

on

the late Prawava Up. a spo-

sure, in

not solitary, assumption of superiority


1
p ar Q f t ie AV. and an interpolated
*
j

j-

Upanishads.

the Pra.rna Up. V, 5 betrays the


distinct tendency to secure at any cost the correlation
of the Atharvan with the highest brahma 2
The authority
in

passage

of Atharvanic teachers, Sanatkumara, Arigiras, Paippalada,


&c, is, of course, cited with especial frequency in the

Atharvan Upanishads, helping to confer upon them an


But in general, all that may be
said is, that the Atharvan Upanishads mention the fourth
Veda along with the other three more frequently than the
corresponding tracts of the other schools, that the Atharvan
is quietly added to the trayi, whether other literary forms
esoteric school character.

like the itihasapura/zam,

&c, appear

in

the sequel, or not.

Even these Upanishads, however, occasionally lapse into


more frequent habit of the bulk of the Vedic literature,

the

and

fail

not,

it

to refer to the Atharvan, whether consciously or


seems impossible to tell. Thus the Muw/aka Up.

I. 1, 5 counts the four Vedas


(Atharvan included) along
with the Ahgas as the lesser science, above which towers

the science of Brahma


rzgvedo, ya^urveda//, samavedo
*tharvaveda/; jriksha, &c.
But in II, 1,6 the list is, rikah
sama ya^uwshi diksha yagiiaska. The Praj-na Up. II, 8
:

'

says of the Pra;/a,

'

life's

breath

(personified),

rishwaw

which seemingly con-

/arita;//

satyam atharvaiigirasam asi,


an allusion to the Atharvan writings, but in II, 6 we
have, pi awe sarva;;/ pratish///itam riko ya^uwshi samani
3
See also Mahanaraya;/a
yagtiah kshatra;;/ brahma ka
Up. 22. This betrays the usual preoccupation with the
tains

traividya, which is not quite effaced by the possible allusion


to the Atharvan in II, 8.
The Nrz'si;/mapurvatapani Up.
1

See Ind. Stud.

See Ind. Stud.

I,

296

IX, 51.

453, note, and cf. Bohtlingk's critical edition of the


Pra.rna in the Proceedings of the Royal Saxon Academy, November, 1890.
3

It

girasaj

I,

would have been easy


a ye, or the like.

to substitute for the last four words, atharvan-

Cf. also Pra.rna V, 5, alluded to above.

INTRODUCTION.

xliii

2 has, r/gya^u/zsamatharva/zaj ^atvaro veda//


-

I,

I, 4,

rig-

Nrzsi/hottarataII, 1 (
ya^"u//samatharvarupa// surya/z
pani Up. 3 Atharva-rikha. Up. 1), rigbhih rigveda/i, ya^urbhir ya^urveda/z, samabhi/z samaveda/z, atharvawair mantrair
;

atharvaveda/z

in

V, 9

into the broader style of

falls

it

reference, rikah, ya^uwshi, samani, atharvaz/am, aiigirasam,


finally to

kalpan, gatha/z, narasamsl/t, leading up


which embraces all (sarvam).
prawavam, the

But

.rakha//, pura;/ani,

Om

we have

V,
rtgma.ya.rn ya^-urmayaw samamayaw
brahmamayam amrz'tamayam, where brahmamayam obin

viously refers to the brahmavidya, the holy science, not to


l
And thus the Brahthe fourth Veda, the Brahmaveda
.

mavidya Up. 5
culminating

in

ff.

the

recounts the

merits of the

traividya,

without reference to the Atharvan.

Om,

seems clear that even the Atharvan Upanishads as a class

It

are engaged neither in defending the Atharvan from attack,


Other
nor in securing for it any degree of prominence.

Atharvan occur

references to the

Atharva^iras

in

aham yagut aham sama*ham atharvangiraso*ham

1,
;

rig

Mu-

Up. 12-14, r/gve da, yaguh, saman, atharva/za ibid. 1,


upanishadam Maha Up. 3, gayaatharvavedagatanam
tram khanda rz'gveda/z, traish/ubha;// Mando ya^urveda//,
gagatam khandah samaveda//, anush/ubha/w //ando*tharvaktika.

Cf. also ATulika

veda/z.

Up.

10, j^, 14.

turning to the Grzhya-sutras it would be natural to


anticipate a closer degree of intimacy with the Atharvan,
and hence a more frequent and less formulaic

On

reference

in the

Gr/hyasutras.

ing,

with

I,

2
.

broadly speakdashed
strongly
being

is itself,

in

verses quoted in the Grz'hya-sutras are

Many

The Upanishads do

Veda as Brahmaveda, unless


and addenda, reported by Weber, Ind. Stud.
occurrence of Brahmaveda is at Saukh. Gn'h. I, 16,

not designate the fourth

trust certain doubtful variants

301, note.

The

earliest

13 (see above, p. xxvii).


2
Cf., e.g. the use of roots, Par.

charm,
'

For the subject-

writings.

of vidhana or sorcery-practice, i.e.


the narrower sense and by dis-

many elements

tinction

its

.....
Atharvanic, besides

Atharvanic features

we

to

matter of these texts

Ajv.

Ill,

12

(cf.

p.

remedial charms,' Asv. Ill,

I,

117
6,

13,
ff.

ff.

.Sahkh.

of this
Tar.

I,

I,

19,

23,

volume); the
16, 24

ff

III,

the battle-

bhaisha^yani,
6;

Ilir.

II,

7;

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

xliv

identical with, or variants of those contained in the

But even the


as they must have been

sa//mita.

Atharva-

Grz'hya-rites, popular, nay vulgar,


their untrammelled beginnings,

in

were, so to speak, Rishified, and passed through in due


time a process of school-treatment which estranged them
as far as possible from the specifically Atharvanic connec-

and assimilated them, as far as possible, to the Rigveda, Sama-veda, and Ya^ur-veda, as the case may be.

tions,

Thus

the battle-charm, A.sv. Ill, 1%, instead of drawing


upon the very abundant mantras of this kind, contained in
the AV. (see p. 117 ff.), is decked out with the scattering

be extracted from the RV.


and Oldenberg's translations).
In general the preference for mantras of the particular

material of this sort that

may

(see the notes to Stenzler's

not quite as great as in the 5rautaanticipation of a marked degree of literary


The
with
the Atharvan is not materialised.
relationship
of
and
the
Sama-veda
Gr/hya-siitras
Khadira),
(Gobhila
school

is

if

nearly

The

sutras.

and Apastamba 1 do not seem to mention the Atharvan


at all
Aivalayana (III, 3, 1-3), on the occasion of the
svadhyaya, the daily recitation of the Veda, recommends
the Atharvan, but the mention of this text is that which
we have found to be the normal one in the 5rauta-literafollowed by
ture, i.e. preceded by rzk, ya^u/^, and saman
2
brahma;/a, kalpa, gatha, nara^a///si, itihasa, and purawa
,

in

connection with a

Similarly Hira/^yakcrin (II, 19, 6),


list of deities, mentions in order r/gveda, ya^urveda,
samaveda, and itihasapura;/a in 6arikhayana I, 24, 8 the

long

Atharvan

is

Apast. VII, 18

even omitted

in

a similar

list,

which catalogues

the sawmanasyani, 'charms to secure harmony,'


ff
VIII, 23, 6. 7; Hir. I, 13, 19 ff. (cf. p.
134 ff.), &c. See in general the list of miscellaneous Grzhya-rites in Oldenberg's index to the Gr/hya-sutras, Sacred Books, vol. xxx, p. 306 ff.
(cf.

]).

ff.)

Par. Ill, 7; Apast. Ill, 9,

1
This Sutra mentions neither rik, saman, nor atharvan, a probably unconscious preoccupation with the yagu/i that must not be construed as intentional
chauvinism against the other Vedas.
The mantra-materials quoted and

employed do not

differ in their general

physiognomy from those of the other

Sutras, but they are always referred to as yagu/i.


'*

The passage

texts presented
5, 7> 5-

contains in slightly different arrangement the list of Vedic


II, 9 and 10, above; cf. also Sat. Br. XI,

by the Tait. Ar.

INTRODUCTION.

xlv

rigveda, ya^urveda, samaveda, vakovakyam, itihasapuraam, and finally sarvan vedan (cf. the same grouping, Sat.
Br. XI, 5, 7, 6 ff.).
But in Sankh. I, 16, 3 (brahmaveda)
Hir. II, 3, 9 (atharvangirasa/z)
II, 18, 3; 20, 9 (atharvaPar.
II, 10, 21 (atharva//am)
10,
II,
7 (atharvaveda)
veda)
;

a distinct advance along the line of later development in the familiar mention of the fourth Veda this is

there

is

not

balanced altogether by the restriction to the

trayi,

15; 24, 2; Hir. I, 5, 13; II, 13, i, or the


Asv.
restriction to two Vedas, Gobh. I, 6, 19
III, 2, 48
Par. I, 6, 3 = vSankh. I, 13. 4, because these passages
I, J, 6
^arikh.

22,

I,

are to a considerable extent quotations, or modifications


The true value of this
of mantras derived from the miti.
is

testimony
sutras,

the Grz'hyachronological, not sentimental


as their subject-matter is akin to the
:

much

as

Atharvan, are not imbued with a sense of its especial value


and importance, any more than the ^rauta-texts. They
handle their materials

in

a self-centred

fashion, without

acknowledging any dependence upon the literary collections


of the Atharvans
their more frequent reference to the
fourth Veda is formulaic in every single instance, and the
;

greater frequency with which it is mentioned marks the


later chronology of the Grz'hya-sutras (cf. Oldenberg, Sacred

Books,

vol.

xxx, pp.

and xvii ff.).


the Vedic

The construction of
as we have seen, such
nation

ATr
The AV.
rr,

in the

sion

law-

there

far as this

against
&

Veda

blessings pronounced
of the individual,

life

holy by

its

at

the

from

very terms.

life
it

is,

any genuine discrimiIn so


the Atharvan.

offers the

against the ills of


demons) in so far as

by

literature in general

as to forbid

means of defence
and posses-

(disease

presents the auspicious


in the

sacramental points
conception

Even

to

witchcraft

is

death,

it

is

part of the

it
has penetrated and has become intimately
the broad current
with
the holiest Vedic rites
blended

religion

of popular religion and superstition has infiltrated itself


through numberless channels into the higher religion that
is

presented by the Brahman priests, and it may be prethat the priests were neither able to cleanse their

sumed

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

xlvi

of folk-belief with which


religious beliefs from the mass
was surrounded, nor is it at all likely that they found
But there is another field
it in their interest to do so.
reach
down to the Veda, in
also
of literature whose roots
which judgment must be passed over the more unclean

own
it

The broad
sinister phases of Atharvanic activity.
arena on which men meet in daily contact is the true
The need of doing unto others
field for the golden rule.
and

what one would have others do unto


the opposite undone, is sure to be
expression in the proper literature.

and leaving
and sure to gain
This literature is the
oneself,

felt,

literature (dharma), more narrowly that part of it


which deals with the mutual rights and obligations of men,
the vyavahara-chapters of the legal Sutras and 6astras.
Here also the Atharvan retains in a measure its place by

legal

virtue of

its

indispensable

profound hold upon popular beliefs, because


sciences like medicine and astrology are

distinction, and because the Atharvan performs, especially for the king, inestimable services in the
The king's chaplain
injury and overthrow of enemies.
in
was
all probability as a rule an Atharvan
(purohita)

Atharvanic by

But incantations, sorceries, and


(cf. Ya^wav. I, 312).
love-charms do work injury, and the dharma-literature
pronounces with no uncertain voice the judgment that the
priest

Atharvan, while useful and indispensable under certain


circumstances, is on the whole inferior in character and
position, that its practices are impure, and either stand in
need of regulation, or must be prohibited by the proper

punishments.

The Atharvan

is not mentioned very frequently either


the Dharma-sutras, the older metrical Dharma-j-astras,
or in the more modern legal Smr/tis. In Vishwu XXX, 37;

in

Baudh.
107)

(cf.

nanda, vol.

In

distinct

this

i,

2
,

Manu
p.

passage,

from the

geschichte

Ya^vZav. I, 44 (cf. Manu II,


Auj-anasa-smr/ti III, 44 (C7iva514), the Atharvan is mentioned in the

II, 5, 9, 14

ioi

IV,

3,

II, 85)

the Atharvan is kept


Weber, Indische Literatur-

vedatharvapura;zani setihasani,

trayi, the

p. 165, note.

veda by distinction

cf.

INTRODUCTION.
normal Vedic manner,

i.e.

xl Vll

preceded by the traividya, and

followed by other literary types, especially the itihasapuIt is worthy of note that in only three of the five
ra//am.
cases (Baudh. II, 5,

the older

9,

14; Ykgnav.

I,

44; Aus.

name

Ill, 44),

the other three

atharvaiigirasa/z appears
have atharvaveda, or atharvan. But it seems altogether
impossible to derive from this any chronological indications
as to the date of a given legal text, since U^anas, or even
;

Ya^wavalkya, is certainly later than Baudhayana and Vish/m.


At this time the names atharvaveda, atharvan, atharva;/a
have established themselves as the equivalent of the older
atharvarigirasa/z, but the older name crops out at times in
At Ya^;7av. I, 3 the fourth Veda is
a purely chance way.
also implied as one of the fourteen foundations of know-

ledge and law, without being mentioned by name cf. also


Au^anasa-smrz'ti V, 66 (Civananda, vol. i, p. 531, bottom).
The Atharvan, however, holds also the position of the
;

fourth

Veda

in cases

where no additional

literature

is

men-

at Baudh. Ill, 9, 4 burnt oblations are offered to


tioned
the four Vedas and many divinities at Baudh. IV, 5, 1 the
;

Saman, Rik, Ya^us, and Atharva-veda are mentioned

in

connection with oblations calculated to procure the special


wishes of one's heart (kamyesh/aya//). At Vas. XXII, 9
the Vedas (sarvaManda/zsaw/hita//) are
the Atharvan is
the
purificatory texts
among
be
to
intended
included, especially as the Atharprobably
the Sawhitas of

all

counted

In the late
explicitly mentioned.
*
the
atharva/zani
Vrz'ddhaharita-sa7/2hita III, 45
(sc. suktani)
In the
are on a level with the riko ya^uwshi and samani.
va.riras (see

below)

is

Aiuanasa-smrz'ti III, 86 (Civananda, vol. i, p. 518) the twiceborn is recommended to read either a Veda, two Vedas, the

Vedas, or the four Vedas, a distinction between the trayi


vidya and the four Vedas, not explicitly stated elsewhere.
The Athai-va^iras, an Upanishad connected with the AV.,
Vas. XXII,
is mentioned a number of times, Gaut. XIX, 12
;

XXVIII, 14

Aiuanasa-smrz'ti IV, 5

mentioned under the name of

.Siras at

same text is
Baudh. IV, 1, 28;
;

the

See Givanandavidyasagara's Dharmajastrasawgraha, vol.

i,

p.

213.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

xlviii

Vas.

XXV, 13
Bauclh. II, 8,

XXI, 6-8

called

5iras,

Vish/m LV,
14,

Certain vows

9.

2; Vas.

XXVI,

also

12,

emanate from the sphere of Atharvanic practices


so
Govinda at Baudh. loc. cit. More pointedly, and without
;

the

company

of the

traividya, the sacred

texts

of the

Atharvan and Ahgiras (.rrutir atharvahgirasi//) are recommended as the true weapons with which the Brahmawa
may slay his enemies, Manu XI, $$ the king must choose
for his chaplain (purohita) one who is skilled in the Atharvan
and Ahgiras (atharvarigirase), Ya^Tzav. I, 312 1 and the
same recommendation is implied at Gaut. XI, 15. 17, where
the king is enjoined to take heed of that which astrologers
and interpreters of omens tell him, and to cause the puro;

hita to perform in his house-fire

among

other expiatory

prosperity (mahgala), and witchcraft

rites (j-anti), rites for

2
Such a purohita is
practices (abhiMra) against enemies
eo ipso an Atharvan priest. In the Atri-sa;/mita (iva.

nanda's collection,
'

Atharvan

vol.

i,

p.

45) ^yotirvido
are
.

priests skilled in astrology

'

atharva//a/,

recommended

performance of .sraddhas and sacrifices (cf. Vish/m


75 Yagvjav. I, 332). The snataka must not live in
a country without physicians, Vish/zu LXXI, 66, and the
for the
III,

king should consult his physicians in the morning, Ya^/av.


At Vish/m III, 87, the king himself is urged to
I, 332.
be conversant with incantations dispelling the effects of
poison and sickness, and at Manu VII, 217, the food of the
king is rendered salubrious by sacred texts that destroy
poison

these passages evidently refer to Atharvanic bhai-

sha^yani

(cf. p.

25

ff.),

and Atharvan

priests skilled in their

At Baudh. II, 8, 15, 4 Vish;/u LXXIII, 1


LXXXL
4, the demons called yatudhana are driven out by means
of sesame, in perfect accord with AV. I, 7, 2.
Thus far then the dharma-literature expresses regard for
use.

the Atharvan, and distinct dependence upon its literature


and its practices. But the ever dubious quality of the fourth

Veda sounds from


1

The king

This

himself

is

notes pitched in a different key.


urged

the stereotyped
kabhi/iarika ; see p. xxix.
is

(ib. I,

summary

In the

310) to devote himself to the trayi.


of the functions of the AV., -rantapush/i-

INTRODUCTION.

xl
XI1X

first place we may remark that the


conspicuous omission
of this Veda which characterises the irauta-literature, with-

out pronounced disapproval of the Atharvan, is continued in


the dharma-texts.
Thus notably in the prohibition of the
recital of the

other Vedas while the sound of the

Samans

heard, these texts mention only the rik and the yaguh
see Gaut. XVI, 21; Vas. XIII, 30; Vishwu XXX, 26
is

Manu

IV,

At Baudh.

124.

123.

IV,

5,

Manu XI,

29;

263-66, the recitation of the traividya is recommended as


a most efficient means of purification and release from sin.
In the cosmogonic account, Manu I, 23, only rik, ya.gu/i,
and saman are derived from the primeval creation.
In
Baudh. II, 8, 14, 4. 5; Manu III, 145, the traividya and

adherents only appear at the funeral-offerings (.sraddha),


though the Atri-sawmita singles out Atharvans skilled in
its

astronomy on that very occasion

Manu

XII, 112

(cf.

Ya^vZav.

Vedas are recommended

I,

(see above, p. xlviii).


9)

At

adherents of the three

as an

assembly (parishad) to decide


21 punishment is declared for

r
points of law; at Ya^wav. II,
that abuses one skilled in the three

him

Vedas at Ya^v/av.
is
the
to
himself
to the study of
devote
310
king
urged
the trayi (vidya) his chaplain, on the other hand, must be
;

I,

skilled in the manipulation of the

atharvahgirasam

(ib. I,

The

312).
inferiority of the Atharvan is stated outright
at Apast. II, 11, 29, to. 11, where it is said that the knowledge of women and .Sudras is a supplement of the Atharva-

veda

(cf.

Buhler, Sacred Books, vol.

ii,

p.

xxix)

more brusquely Vishz/u V, 191 counts him that

and yet
recites a

deadly incantation from the Atharva-veda as one of the


seven kinds of assassins.

more

frequently, performances which imply the


and
use of the Atharvan are decried and
knowledge
punished, though the writings of the Atharvan are not
Thus magic rites with intent to
expressly mentioned.
harm enemies, and sorceries and curses in general, cause
Still

impurity, and are visited with severe penances at Apast.

I,

15; Baudh. II, 1, 2, 16; Gaut. XXV, 7;


Vish;/u XXXVII, 26
LIV, 25; Manu IX. 290; XI, 198
Ya^v/av. Ill, 289. Yet the other side of the coin is turned
9,

26, 7;

io, 29,

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

up

Manu

at

XI, 33, where the Atharvan is recommended


weapon of the Brahma//a against his enemies

as the natural

Narada, V, 108, also betrays his hostile


(see above).
attitude towards sorcery when he remarks that the sage
took an oath, being accused of witchcraft *.
With especial frequency and emphasis the impurity of
physicians is insisted upon, Apast. I, 6, 18, 20; 19, 15;
Vish/m LI, 10; LXXXII, 9; Gaut. XVII, 17 Vas. XIV,
Vasish/Z^a

Manu

180; IV, 212. 220; Ya^wav. I, 162;


we gathered above (p. xxxix) that the practice of
III, 240
medicine is regarded in the .same light in the Brahmawas
Astrothe charge, of course, reflects upon the Atharvan.
2.

19;

III, 152.

logy also, and fortune-telling, are impure occupations,


Baudh. II, 1, 2, 16; Manu IX, 258; the practice of astroManu VI, 50;
logy is forbidden to ascetics, Vas. X, 21
;

and the astrologer

excluded from the jraddha, Vish/m


LXXXII, 7; Manu III, 162. That these practices were
Atharvanic in character we may gather from AV. VI, 128
is

Kau^-. 50, 15

An

especially pointed reflection against


the AV. is implied in the prohibition of the mulakriya or
3
mulakarma, 'practices with roots :' at Vishwu XXV, 7
.

wives are especially forbidden to engage in such practice ;


at Manu IX, 290 magic rites with roots, practised by persons not related to him against whom they are directed,
are regarded as sinful 4
at Manu XI, 64 practices with
;

roots in general are forbidden.


Such practices abound in
RV. X, 145)
the AV. and its ritual; see I, 34; III, 18 (

V, 31, T2 VI, 138. 139 VII, 38, &c, and the performances
connected with them (cf. p. 99 ff. and the commentary on
;

these hymns).

Though they

are not wanting elsewhere,

especially in the Grzhya-sutras, the brunt of the charge is


without doubt directed against the Atharvan. Finally, at

Gaut.
1

XV,

He

16

Vish/m

LXXXII,

12

has in mind the asseveration of the poet,

Manu

III,

RV. VII,

151

IV,

104, 15, adyjf

muiiya yadi yatudhano asmi, &c, may I die to-day if I am a sorcerer.'


J
Cf. Seven Hymns of the Atharva-vtda,' Amer. Journ. Phil. VII, 484
'

'

'

(19
8

of the reprint) the present volume, pp. 160, 532 ff.


Cf. the same prohibition in the Mahabharata, below, p.

ff.

The commentator Narada

ag.iinst a

ff.

husband or

relative.

liv.

states that they are permissible, if practised

INTRODUCTION.
205,

he who practises

pronounced impure
was largely,

activity

van-priests

cf.

li

a multitude (gramaya^aka)

for

we may presume

is

that this kind of

not entirely in the hands of Atharthe note on p. xl.


if

The

position of the Atharvan in the Mahabharata may


be characterised in the single statement that its importance

Th

av

'

theMaha-

its canonicity, are finally and


established
that its practices are
completely

as a Veda,

and

familiarly

known

general, not

in

There

criticism.

jected to
affinity

and,

any particular
between the great Epic and the
of a

is

sub-

no especial

jrauta-literature.

considerable

quantity of
barring the continuance
the legendary materials (akhyana) which are woven into
the descriptions of the Vedic sacrifices in the Brahma/ms
hence there is nothing in the Epic to induce preoccupa-

On the other hand, the great


tion with the trayi vidya.
collection deals so largely with the interests of the
Kshatriyas as to preclude any conscious discrimination
against the fourth Veda, since this Veda also is to a very
considerable extent engaged in the interest of the kings
(ra^akarma/zi, Kauj-ika, chapters 14 to 17), and the practices of their chaplains (purohita) are also largely AtharIt is true that the Mahabharata in
vanic in character.

common

with

all

Hindu

literature, the

Atharvan

literature

not excluded, mentions frequently only the three Vedas by


their distinctive names, or by the generic terms trayi vidya.

Thus in the passages assembled in


and trayo veda//.
A. Holtzmann's sufficiently exhaustive collectanea on this
question in his work on the Epic, Das Mahabharata und
seine Theile, vol. iv, p. 5, the prevailing Vedic habit of
But there can be little
referring to the Vedas is continued.
question that this mode of reference has at this time, as
doubtless in a measure also in the period of Vedic productivity, become a stereotyped mechanical habit, continued

from the tradition of

earlier times

Deutsch. Morgenl. Gesellsch.

German expression
is

'

XL,

cf.

701,

Biihler, Zeitschr. d.

who compares

die vier Erdtheile,' and the like.

no indication that the mention of the Atharvan

sciously avoided.

d2

the

There
is

con-

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

Hi

The main proof


and

of the high regard for the Atharvan

unchallenged position in the canon, are the quasicosmogonic passages in which the four Vedas figure in the
its

primordial transactions of the creation of the world, and


with the personified creator. Thus, at V, 108,

its affinity

10=3770 Brahman is said


Vedas; Brahman himself is

to

have

sung the four

first

called A'aturveda, III, 203, 15


as
at XIX, 238, 9 (Bhav.)
Vish/m
13560,
similarly
at
III, 189, 14=12963; VI, 6j, 6
12884;
3019 Vishnu

himself declares that the four Vedas (atharva^a the fourth)


have sprung from him. According to XIX, 14, 15 (Bhav.)
= 11516, Brahman created first the tristich called Gayatri,
the mother of the Vedas, and afterwards the four Vedas
according to XIX, 53, 41 (Bhav.)= 13210 he carries upon
each of his four heads one of the Vedas, or, according to
II, 11, 32 = 449, the four Vedas dwell bodily in his palace.

At XII,

347,

ingly the

owe

it

Brahman

demons

malicious

27=13476

Vedas from Brahman, and Vish/m

steal the four

Accordand the kings, both of whom

priest

restores them.

to themselves to be vedavid, are

more

specifically

described as knowing and reciting the four Vedas, at

37

= 2880

ff.

VII,

9,

29 = 289;

XIX,

142,

I,

70,

(Vish.)=7993,

where a Brahmazza

is designated as X'aturveda//, just as the


Other instances of the mention
divinity Brahman, above.
of the four Vedas, with or without other literary composi-

I, 1, 21
L.i, 264; 11,11,32 = 450; 111,43,41 =
1661 (akhyanapa/}/amair vedai/z) III, 58, 9 = 2247 (aturo
vedan sarvan akhyanapa/X6aman) III, 64, 17 = 2417 (at-

tions, are

varo veda/z sarigopanga/z) III, 189, 14=12963; V, 44, 28


= 1711 VII, 59, 15 = 2238; VII, 149, 22 = 6470; XII, 236,
;

= 8613; XII,
341, 8 = 13136
1

28=12723; XII,

8= 12872;

XII,
ya^urvede tathai*va*tharvasamasu, pura//e sopanishade); XII, 342,97= 13256 ff.; XII,
347, 28 = 13476; XIII, 17, 91 = 1205 ff. (where the Atharvan appears first, atharva-rirsha/z samasya rzksahasramite335,

(rz'gvede

339,

kshaa/z, ya^u/zpadabhu^o guhya/z) XIII, 11 1, 46 = 5443;


XIII, 168, 31 = 7736; XIX, 109, 5 (Vish.) = 949i (atvaro
;

sakhila veda// sarahasya/z savistara/z)

= 11665.

Cf.

Holtzmann,

I.e., p. 6.

XIX,

14, 15 (Bhav.)

INTRODUCTION.

By

itself

the Atharvan

is

Hii

mentioned numerous times: as

atharvarigiras (singular), atharvaiigirasa/^ (plural), atharva-

atharvan, atharva/za, atharva^a, and atharva-veda.


Invariably the statements presenting these names are either
rigirasa,

directly laudatory, or they exhibit the Atharvan in an indisputable position of usefulness. At III, 305, 20=17066

Kunti knows mantras, atharvarigirasi 1 mitam, for compelling the gods to appear; at II, 11, 19 = 437 the atharvarigirasa//, personified, are mentioned honorifically along
with other Vedic Rishis
at V, 18, 5 = 548 ft. Aiigiras
Indra
with
and Indra declares
atharvavedamantrai/,
praises
that this Veda shall henceforth have the name atharvahgi;

At XII, 342, 99 = 13258 ff. Pra^apati declares that


rasa.
the sages skilled in the Atharvan (vipra atharva/zavidas)
fashion him into an Atharvan priest, devoted to the practice
(pa/^akalpam atharva//am). At V, 37,
Atharvan practitioners (atharva;/a/z) are spoken
in a friendly way
For him that has been wounded with
the arrow of wit there are no physicians and no herbs, no
sacrificial formulas, no amulets, no Atharvawas
(conjurers),
and no skilful remedies 2
See also I, 70, 40=2883; III,
of the five kalpas

58
of

= 1391

'

.'

251,24=15147; XIII, 14, 309 = 901


In a number of places weapons are
and

XIII, 94, 44 = 4590.


be as fierce

said to

efficacious as the sorcery-practices

of the

Atharvan

(krztyam atharvangirasim iva), VIII, 40, 33=1848; VIII,


90,4 = 4625; VIII, 91,48 = 4795; IX, 17, 44 = 907; XIII,
the passages imply neither praise nor blame,
98. 13 = 4706
:

but represent Atharvan practices as familiarly established


the customs of the people.
scarcely to be expected that the Atharvan and

among
It

is

practices, notwithstanding their establishment in the

its

good

graces of the epic writers, shall come off entirely without


there must have been persons aching under its
criticism
;

supposed
vulgarity.

inflictions,

and moods awake to a


Mahabharata

In such cases the

the spirit of the dharma-texts.

Thus

full

sense of

its

reflects entirely

at XII,

36-28 = 1322

In the Calcutta edition, atharvajirasi for atharvaiigirasi.


Cf. Lohtlingk, Indische Spriiehe, 1497-8.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

Hv

XIII, 90, 13 = 4282, physicians are declared to be impure


Practices undertaken by bad women
(cf. above, p. 1).
with charms and

roots (mantramulapara stri

inula-

pra^ara) are inveighed against the man that has a wife


addicted to them would be afraid of her, as of a snake that
:

had got into the house,

III,

of the

identical

233,

13=14660

ff.

cf.

the
l

dharma-texts above,

p. 1) .
prohibition
Women are said at XIII, 39, 6 = 2237 ff. (cf. Bohtlingk's
Indische Spniche 2 6407) to be skilled in the sorceries of the
,

demons Namu/'i, 5ambara, and Kumbhinasi. Magic


Thus kr/tya. is
or sorcery is in general regarded as good.
evil

regarded as the divinity of witchcraft (abhi^aradevata) by


the commentator on VII, 92, 54 = 3314, and krz'tya, abhiara, and maya are in general allowable, but yet it is
possible in the view of the Epic to bewitch right to make
it wrong, to be a dharmabhLarin, XII, 140, 42 = 5288, or
to use foul

maya, VII, 30, 15=1316 ff. (see above, p. xxix,


Hopkins, Journ. Amer. Or. Soc. XIII, 312 ff.).
In the Ramayawa the Vedas in general are mentioned
very frequently special Vedic names appear to be rare,
the Sama-veda (samaga//) being mentioned at IV, 27, 10,

and

cf.

the Taittiriya (a^aryas taittiriya//am) at II, 32, 7 (cf. Ind.


The Atharvan (mantras a*tharva;/a//)
Stud. I, 297).
21.
occurs at II, 26,

Atharvan is scarcely menMahabh. V, 37, 58= 1391 in Bohtlingk's Indische


2
Spruche 4216), but the mantras of the AtharThe AV. in
van are in the minds of the poets, though
the later
In the proverb-literature the

tioned

(cf.

literature

in general.

....

they usually speak of mantras


.without specification.
Thus a
.

in

general

comparison

of proverbs 1497-8 with 4216 seems to call up the atmosphere of the Atharvan practices in their mention of aushastill more clearly
rogaviyogamantraat 2538 refers to the bhesha^ani of the AV., and

dhani and mantrawi

mahima

varayitum

vyadhir bhesha^asawgrahau ka.


vividhamantraprayogair visham, proverb 6348, both to the
sa.kya.rn

The sentiment has become proverbial


(Bohtlingk's Indische Spriiche\ 5260).
1

see

J>arng.

Paddh.,

niti

76 b

INTRODUCTION.

bhesha^-ani and the charms against poison (see p. 25 fif.).


The knowledge of sorcery, dreaded in women (see the
prohibitions in the dharma, p. 1 above), is alluded to in

=
proverbial form at 526o

Mahabh.

Ill,

233,

XIII, 39, 6 = 2237.


In the Daj-akumara-X-arita the Atharvan

and

13=14660;

6407 = Mahabh.

is

employed

an obvious sorcery practice, atharvawikena


vidhina (chapter iii, p. 108, 13), where priests perform sacrifices preliminary to transforming a person from one shape
once

twice,

in

Another time (chapter

to another.

vidhina).

Cf.

94) a marriage

p.

ii,

Atharvanic ceremonies

with

celebrated

is

Weber, Ind. Stud.

328.
In the Kiratar^-uniya X, 10
Muir, Orig. Sanskrit Texts I

297

I,

(atharva//ena
Ind. Streifen,

I,

Ind. Stud.

Weber,

(cf.

I,

289

p. 395) there is a passage


which shows that the potency of the Atharvan had not
,

then waned anupama.s'amadiptitagariyan krz'tapadapanktir


atharva;zena veda//, he (Ar^-una), being through unparalleled composure and fervour exceedingly powerful, as the
:

'

Veda arranged by Atharvan V


The Pura^as always speak

of the fourfold

Veda

-,

and

of the ritualpresent the Atharvan in the advanced position


The
istic literature of the AV. itself; cf. below, p. lvii ff.
to
the
four
Vedas
four
the
Vishu-pura//a, p. 276, assigns
priests

of the

Similarly at

the

jrauta-ritual,

Prasthana-bheda,

p.

AV.
16,

to
1.

the

Brahman.

10, there

is

the

statement, paurohitya;;/ .yantipaush/ikani ra^-wam atharvavedena karayed brahmatvaw ka. cf. Max Muller, Ancient
;

Sanskrit Literature, p. 476.


19. 20 speaks of the fourfold

The Bhagavata-pura;/a I, 4,
Veda designed for the execu-

Mallinatha comments upon the passage, and cites an agama, to wit rama//
abhyuda) akandc diptita ugrata abhi/tarakaWe atharvawa vasish//*ena kreta
:

5antir

sa vedaj
aturthaveda/j, atharvaas tu
padana/// panktir anupurvo yasya
The passage has a twofold
mantroddharo vasish^ena krha. ity a^amai
it reflects the ancient Atharvanic (abhyudaya) and Angirasic (abhiinterest

ia/."ita

components of the Veda, and


above, p. xviii, and below, p. lxv.
/(ara)

Cf. Colebrooke, Miscellaneous

it

I, 5

its

Essays, vol.

(Wilson's translation, vol.


be the northern mouth of Brahman.

purawa

ascribes

i,

p. 85),

i,

redaction to VasishA&a

p.

10.

cf.

See, e.g. Vishwuis said to

where the Atharvan

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

Ivi

tion of the sacrifice (ya^Tzasawtatyai

vedam ekaw

atur-

the sequel.
At VI,
the
veda.
the
Also,
6, 19 figures
atharvarigirasa
Matsyapura//a, as quoted by Saya/za in the introduction to the

vidham), mentioning them by name

in

AV., p. 6, orders that the purohita shall compass the


Mantras and the Brahma//a of the AV.
and the Mar;

kaw^/eya-purawa claims that the king consecrated with the


Mantras of the AV. enjoys the earth and the ocean see
;

Sayaz/a, ibid.
In the C7ainist Siddhanta,

246-7

II,

the Caina
and Bauddha

fifth anga (bhagavati), I, 441


X, 3, the scope of Vedic or
upanga, I, 76
Brahmanical literature is stated as riuveda,
;

samaveda,

^a^-uveda,

vawa _)

writings.

ahavva/mveda

(athav-

see

Weber,

itihasapa;///amaOT

Verzeichniss der Sanskrit- und Prakrit-Hand-

423-4; and Ind. Stud. XVI, pp. 238, 304,


379, 423, 474 \
According to Weber, ibid., p. 237, the
Siddhanta is to be placed between the second and fifth
centuries of our era.
This mode of describing the Vedic
literature we found above to prevail from the time of the
.Sat. Br. to the Mahabharata.
In the Sutrakrz'tariga-sutra
II, 27 (see Jacobi's translation, Sacred Books, vol. xlv,
p. 366) the incantations of the Atharvan (atharva/zi) are
schriften,

II,

naturally spoken of in condemnatory language.


As specimens of the view of the Buddhist writings we
may quote the A///mkavagga 14, 13 of the Sutta-nipata
(Fausboll's translation, Sacred Books, vol. x, part ii, p. 176),
where the practice of the Athabbaz/a-veda is forbidden. To

the

condemnation of practices essentially Atharvanic in


is devoted the Maha Silaw, in the second
chapter

character

of the Tevi^-a-sutta

see

Rhys Davids'

translation in the

Sacred Books,

vol. xi,

Kullavagga V,

32, 2, ibid., vol. xx, p. 152.

Cf.

p. 221.

also

pp. 196-200, similarly the Vinaya,

Kalpa-sutra, in Jacobi's

translation,

Sacred Books, vol. xxii,

INTRODUCTION.

The Atharva-veda

III.

in

Ivii

the view of

its

Ritualistic Literature.
It is

but natural to expect, and the expectation nowhere

meets with disappointment, that the Atharvan texts in


general should allude with predilection, and
The normal

theAV.inits

own

estimate of
literature.

terms of praise, to their own kind of comthe mythical


positions, to
sages who are
J
their reputed authors, and to the priests

devoted to the practices that went hand


recitation of the Atharvans and Arigiras.

in

hand with the

We

found above,
a sufficiently marked tendency on the
part of the Sa///hita itself and the Atharvan Upanishads to
do this there was occasion to note, too, that this tendency
(pp. xxxii, xlii),

was followed out naturally and with moderation. Certainly


there is no indication in these texts of any systematic
attempt to make battle against the ancient threefold Veda,
or to enter into polemics against the priests devoted to
their respective duties while reciting or chanting its mantras.

Similarly the

ritual

offers,

AV. allude preferably,


own Veda, and as occasion
Thus
priests schooled in it.

texts of the

and yet incidentally,

to their

bring to the front the

is offered to Bhrz'gu and Arigiras


with
other
divinities, without mention, however, of
along
The
any specific representatives of the other Vedas.

Kauj\ 139, 6 an oblation

expression. Kauj 125, 2, vedabhigupto brahmawa parivr/to


*tharvabhi/z j-anta// 1, illustrates this passive preference for
-

the Atharvan very well; cf. also 137, 25.


Again, Kau.r.
63, 3, four priests descended from Tv'/shis, skilled in the
bhrzgvarigirasa//, are employed very naturally,
larly allusion is made to Atharvan priests and

schools, Kaiij-. 59, 25;


46, 2

y^,

Arigiras,
1

73, 12; Vait. Su. 1, 5; Ath. Pari.?.


In the Atharva-paruish/as Bhr/gu,

and Atharvan figure more frequently than any

The passage

l'.rahman and the


nan.askrj'tya,

77, 4.

and simiAtharvan

reflects also

brahma

and see below,

cf.

the Atharvanic connection of their

Ath.

p. lxii

1'aii.f.

ff.

Veda with

2,1, brahmawe brahinavedaya

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

lviii

other names
they have become the typical teachers of
the trivialities which these texts profess.
But over and above this the ritual texts raise certain
:

claims

special

Nature of the
especial claims
of the ntual
texts.

The

Veda.

three heads.

the

regarding

of the

position

Atharvan

among the Vedas, and they


J further make the
demand with strident voice and obvious
fa

'

intention that certain offices shall be


polemic
1
reserved for the priests conversant with that

position of these texts may be stated under


First, they are not content with the rather

which refer
general to a threefold Veda, reserving, as we have seen,
the honorific mention of the fourth Veda to more or less
vacillating attitude of the non-Atharvanic texts
in

well-defined o:casions, especially to moods when it is felt


desirable to call into requisition the entire range of Vedic
literary composition in addition to the trayi vidya (e. g.
itihasa, pura//a, gatha, &c).
Secondly, the office of the

Brahman, the fourth priest at the jrauta-ceremonies, who


and corrects by means of expiatory formulas
(praya^itta) the accidents and blunders of hotar, udgatar,
and adhvaryu, is said to belong to an Atharvavedin, and
oversees

the Vaitana-sutra in fact exhibits the bhz'/gvangirovid in


Thirdly, a similar claim is
possession of that office.

advanced in respect to the office of the purohita. Again


and again it is stated that the purohita, guru, or brahman
of a king, the chaplain or house-priest, shall be conversant
with the Atharvan writings, shall be an Atharvan priest, and
this claim, as we have seen above (p. xlvi), is supported
to some extent by later Brahmanical treatises not derived
from Atharvan schools. Cf. also below, p. lxvii.

The Gopatha-brahmawa,

in its opening chapters I, 1,4describes


the
10,
cosmogonic origin of the universe and
Unlike
the Vedas from the lone brahma.
v
,.

,.
Exaltation
of the av.

other texts, which as a rule ignore the Atharvan in these creative accounts, the atharvan

and the angiras texts are placed at the head the other
Vedic texts (rz'k, ya^u//, and saman, I, 1, 6), as well as the
;

subsidiary compositions (the five Vedas, called sarpaveda,

puaX'aveda, asuraveda, itihasaveda, and purawaveda,

I,

1,

INTRODUCTION.
are relegated

10),

Atharvan

is

Gop. Br.
greatest

I,

to

the rear.

llX

At

Vait.

Su.

6,

the

again placed at the head of the four Vedas.


the Atharvan compositions as the
3, 4 lauds
manifestation,

religious

bhr/gvangirasa/^, and

brahma yad

etad

vai

at

2,

I,

bhuyish///aw

16

I.

(cf.

2,

18)

the Atharvan figures as the fourth Veda by the name of


Brahma-veda, being here correlated with the service of the
l
Brahman-priest as the overseer at the jrauta-ceremonies
At I, i, 9 there is quoted a stanza, thoroughly Upanishad
in character, which shows that the Atharvanists correlated

the knowledge of brahma, the higher and


subtler religious conception, which at all times is raised

their

Veda with

above any special knowledge of the constituent parts of


The highest Veda was born of tapas,
the Vedic religion
2
in
of those that know the brahma .'
it
the
heart
grew
'

The Atharvan

texts never cite the trayi vidya in

ritual

3
differformulary order without including the fourth Veda
and
the
Sawhita
of
from
the
text
in
even
this
ing
regard
,

The first
the Atharvan Upanishads (see pp. xxxii, xliii).
that they
the
assertion
with
ends
(1, 5, 25)
who study the trayi reach, to be sure, the highest heaven
half of the Gop. Br.

(trivish/apaw tridivazw

nakam uttamam), but

yet the Athar-

vans and Angiras go beyond to the great worlds of

brahmaloka mahanta//).
As regards the Brahman, the overseer

Brahma

(ata uttare

at

the ^rauta-

performances, the Vait. Su. 1, 1 states that he must be


conversant with the Brahma-veda, and in 1, 17.
J K this
of Brahman
priest is described as the lord of beings.
in the ritual
i

orc

Qf

texts.

seem

to

t jie

worlH

'

&c

indicate that he

tive at the sacrifice of the personified

These expressions
is

the

representa-

god Brahman.

At

11, 2 (cf. Gop. Br. I, 2, 16) the Brahman is again ordered


to be conversant with the atharvahgirasa//, this time in
1

&atasro va ime hotra, hautram adhvaryavam audgatraw brahmatvam.


Thus according to the version of Saya;*a, Introduction to the AV., p.

5,

vedas lapasoidhi^ato brahma^v/anaw hrtdaye sawbabhuva. Raj^endralalaniitra's edition, siesh//io ha vedas tapaso j dhi^uto brahma^yanaw kshitaye
sveshi/io hi

sawbabhuva,
3

'it

was created

for the destruction of the oppressors of

Brahmans.'

See especially Gop. Br. II, 2, 14, where the atharvahgirasaA are added
every time in liturgical formulas to the rik&h, yn^uwshi, and samdni.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

Ix

expressed

with

contrast

udgatar,

hotar,

ya^urveda). At Gop.

(satnaveda, r/gveda,
the Brahman is described with the

and adhvaryu

Br.

I,

18 (end)

2.

words, esha ha vai

The last
vidvan sarvavid brahma yad bhngvangirovid.
statement is of especial interest as indicating the identifiAtharvan with the sarvavidya which stands
above the trayi vidya (cf. below, p. lxiii). Especially at
Gop. I, 3, 1.2 the futility of the sacrifice without a Brahcation of the

man

skilled

in

the bh/'zgvahgirasa/z

described vividly:

is

a cow, a horse, a mule, a chariot cannot proceed with less


than four feet, therefore the sacrifice, in order to succeed,

must have four

the four Vedas, and the four priests.


Especially characteristic is the following At Tait. S. Ill,
5, 2, 1, &c. (cf. Ind. Stud. X, 34), the well-known legend is
feet

told, according

to

which Vasish///a

'

saw Indra

clearly,

/cYshis (in general) did not see him clearly.'


Indra makes Vasish//za his Brahman (purohita), and con-

though the
fides to

him moreover a mystery, the stomabhaga-verses.

Since then

men have

thereVasish//za for their purohita


is to be chosen as Brahman.
:

fore a descendant of Vasish///a

The same legend

is repeated almost verbatim Gop. Br. II,


but
the
text
demurs at the last clause. The Gop. Br.
2, 13,
cannot say tasmad vasish//zo brahma karya//, because it has

previously stated emphatically that a bhr/gvarigirovid is the


only person fitted for that exalted office (I, 2, 18 3, 1 ff.).
;

At

Vait. Su.

steed which

the garhapatya-fire is personified as a


prepared b)^ the four Vedas for the Brah-

6, 1

is

man, and by Pra^apati

man = atharvan

Atharvan

for

The

is

the equation brahpassage, Vait. Su. 37, 2,


:

implied.
or theological contest between the Brahman
and the Udgatar, betrays perhaps a certain insecurity and
touchiness on the part of the Brahman in his assumed

brahmodya

Not art thou superior,


superiority to the other priests
better than I, goest not before me.
Thou speakest
'

these words that are worthy of being learned, (but) shalt


not become equal to me.' The superiority of the Brahman

was occasionally disputed


1

l
,

and possibly the Atharvanic

See Haug, Brahma unci die Brahmanen, p. 10.

INTRODUCTION.

Brahman

felt

lxi

that he stood in special need of asserting his

dignity.

energetic are the demands of the liturgical


matter of the office of purohita who is

Even more
texts
1 he

the

in

known

office of

purohita

in the

ritual texts.

wise that

is

the name of brahman and


by
J
The king who rules the country shall
wJse Bra h man (brahma;;am). He verily
also

'

guru.
geek a

bhr/gu and ahgiras

skilled in the

is

bhr/gu and angiras act as a charm against


and protect everything' (Kaiu.

occurrences,
126,

2).

guru

is

r,

3,

The

of

equivalence

brahman,

for the

all

ominous

94,

2-4;

purohita,

guaranteed by comparing with this Ath.

kulina/w

bhr/gvarigirovida;;/

jrotriya;/*

vrz'wiyad bhupati/;

and

cf.

and

Pam.
guru;;/

tasmad bhn'gvangirovidaw
Cf. also 2, 2, brahma tasmad
The gods, the Fathers, and the

3,

3,

kuryat purohitam.
Conversely,
twice-born (priests) do not receive the oblation of the
is skilled in
king in whose house there is no guru that
.

'

atharvavit.

the Atharvan

'

(2,

3).

Cf.

Weber, Omina und Portenta,

(Darila:

Saya;;a Introduction to the


In Kaur. 17, 4 ff the king and the purohita
in active co-operative
raga, purodha//) are seen

practice

at

p.

346

AV.,

ff.

p.

Ind. Stud. X, 138

6.

consecration

the

(brahma ra^a ka)

in

140,

of the
ff.

and again
king
indramahotsava;

the

at

festival.

The Atharva-pamish/as

are not content with these strong

recommendations of their own adherents, but they would


have the adherents of the other Vedas, yea even of certain
branches (jakha) of the Atharvan itself, excluded from the
purohiti: 'The Atharvan keeps off terrible occurrences,
not the
and acts as a charm against portentous ones
bahvrzka..
the
not
and
not
the
Mandoga,
adhvaryu,
.

The

bahvr/y&a destroys the kingdom, the adhvaryu destroys


hence the guru must
sons, the ^//andoga dissipates wealth
;

be an Atharvawa. ... A Paippalada as guru increases hapa .Vaunakin


piness, sovereignty, and health, and so does
The king
who understands the gods and the mantras.
.

whose purodha

is

alada or a Mauda is
any way a
kingdom within the year (Ath. Parfy.
in

'

deposed from his

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

Ixii

The

2-5)

2,

Maudas

are

Kaiuika,

(see

Paippaladas,

.Saunakins,
of

alike

representatives
p. xxxiii

Introduction,

6"aladas,

and

Atharvan

schools

the

passage

ff.):

shows how eager

the scramble for the office of purohita


That the Atharvans finally succeeded in

had become.

making heard

their

clamorous demand

for this office (see

below, p. Ixvii) is probably due, as we shall see, to their


superior, if not exclusive knowledge of witchcraft, which

was doubtless regarded in the long run as the most pracand trenchant instrument for the defence of king and

tical

people.
In order to estimate at

its

the Atharvanists that their


C

name Brahma-veda, and


3.

is

that

to the

entitled

the

so-called

uses

leadingnpto
the exaltation

oftheAV.

Brahman-priests and the Purohitas must be


adherents of the AV., we need to premise
r
certain considerations of a more general nature.
.

the Vedic

In

correct value the claims of

own Veda

cautiously

system, or we might say more


three literary forms and

religious

religious

evolution,

correspondingly three liturgical methods of application of


these forms to the sacrifice were evolved at a time prior to
the recorded history of Hindu religious thought and action.

They

are the rikaJi, samani, and ya^u/wshi,

known

also

by

a variety of other designations, and characterised to a considerable extent by special verbs expressing the act of
2
reciting or chanting them
Correspondingly the priests
.

who had

learned one of these varieties of religious expresits mode of application to the sacrifice appear,
again for aught we know from prehistoric times as individual actors (hotar, udgatar, adhvaryu), in no wise qualified
sion

and

each by himself to shoulder the burden of literary knowThe Hindus were at all times
ledge or liturgic technique.
well aware that these religious forms are fragmentary and
The Rig-veda contains countless expresparts of a whole.
sions indicating the insufficiency of the rika/i to
1

Cf.

Weber, Ind. Stud.

I,

296

fulfil

alone

the author, Journ. Amer. Or. Soc. XI, 378,

note.
2

See

Max

Miiller,

Ludwig, Der Rigveda,

History of Ancient Sanskrit Literature,


III, p. 25

ff.

p.

489

ff.

INTRODUCTION.

1 Xlll

the scheme of religious action, and the interdependence of


the three Vedic types.
There is a Rig-veda, but no Rigvedic religion, as even recent writers on the religions of

the absence of samans


Vedic religion just as much muti-

India unfortunately tend to assume

would

in principle leave

lated as the absence of rtks

comprehensive vision

search for a word for

the categories are the three

carried by each in turn.


was never wanting, though the

parts of a trio whose melody

is

'

religion,'

or religious practice, as

very successful. The Brahmawatexts still struggle with the notion of the superiority of him
that knows all the Vedas, and they consequently posit a
1
sarvavidya which is superior to a knowledge of each of
a whole

was

at first not

The most successful attempt at describing


the religious literature and action as a whole is the word
brahma, and, correspondingly, he who knows the religion
Each of these words appears
as a whole is a brahman.
the Vedas.

occasionally in the fourth place, brahma after the trayi


brahman in company with the priests of the trayi. In

a sense the

brahma

and much

a fourth Veda, but

is

with the other three

it

else besides

it is

not co-ordinate

embraces and comprehends them


it is the religious expression and

religious action as a whole, and it is the learned esoteric


understanding of the nature of the gods and the mystery
of the sacrifice as a whole (brahma in brahmodya and

brahmavadin). Needless to say, this fourth Veda, if we may


so call it, has primarily no connection with the Atharvan,
not even in the Atharva-sawhita itself (XI, 8, 23
XV, 3,7;
6, 3), nor in the Upanishads of that Veda (e.g. Nr/si;/mapurvatapani Up. V, 2) the claim that the Atharvan is the
;

In the
Brahma-veda belongs to the Atharvan ritual.
with
contrasted
still
this
brahma,
frequently
Upanishads
the ordinary Vedas, is taken up eagerly, extolled above all
other knowledge, and in a way personified, so that it furnishes one of the main sources of the various conceptions

which
1

9,4.

finally

Tait. Br. Ill,


!

7-

precipitate

10,

11,

themselves

4; Tait. Ar. X, 47;

in

cf.

.S'at.

the

Br.

pantheistic

XIV,

6,

7,

18;

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

IxiV

The knowledge

Brahman-Atman.

which

of this

brahma

consti-

separated by the widest


from
the
Brahma-veda
in the Atharvanic
imaginable gap
sense cf. above, p. xliii.
tutes the brahmavidya,

is

This broader religious knowledge exists again from


earliest times, not only in the abstract, but centres in
persons who grasped it in its entirety, in distinction from
the technically qualified priests devoted to some speciality.
What the brahma is to the trayi, that the brahman is to

Thus

hotar, adhvaryu, &c.

RV. X,

the important stanza,

71, 11, depicts the activity of four priests at a .yrauta-sacri-

the hotar (rifcam

fice,

aste pupushvan), the udgatar

posham

gayati .jakvarishu), the adhvaryu (ya^/Hsya


matra//2 vi mimite), and the brahman.
The latter is described in the words, brahma vadati ^atavidyam, the Brah(gayatra.7//

'

man

tells (his)

innate

wisdom

The

association of the

first

three priests with the three Vedic categories rzk, saman,


and ya.gii/i, is expressed with a degree of clearness com-

mensurate with the character of the hymn, which is in the


nature of a brahmodya. But the brahman has no peculiar
Veda certainly there is no allusion to the Atharvan. His
;

knowledge

is

that of the entire Veda, the sarvavidya (Tait.

Br. Ill, 10, 11, 4), religious knowledge as a whole.


By
means of this knowledge he is able to assume in the ritual
practices the function of correcting the mistakes of the

other priests, whose knowledge is more mechanical. The


Brahman is as it were the stage-manager in the sacerdotal

drama, the physician of the sacrifice when it is attacked by


the disease of faulty execution (.Sat. Br. XIV, 2, 2, 19) he
is the mind of the sacrificer
As
(.Sat. Br. XIV, 6, 1, 7)-.
;

such he is also conversant with the mystic aspects of the


divine powers, the powers of nature, and the details of the
sacrifice.
In the expression, brahma vadati ^atavidyam,
the own wisdom is the brahma (neuter), and vadati ^ata'

'

vidyam foreshadows the brahmodya,


1

RV.

Cf.

I,

91, 10.
"
Cf. Weber,

10,

II, 1, 2

IV, 22,

VI, 38,

'

3.

the holy, or theo4

VII, 33, 14

X,

52,

X,
p.

ff.

Ind. Stud. X, 135 ff


Ludwig, Der Rigveda, HI, 28

Haug, Brahma und

ff.

die

Brahmanen,

lxv

INTRODUCTION.
logical mystery, or riddle

as well as the ritualist refine-

ments which the Brahma//a and Sutra-texts introduce times


without end with the closely-related expression, brahmavadino vadanti. In the non-Atharvanic Vedic texts it is
never suggested that the Atharvan is the specific equipment, above all other things, which shapes the faculties
On the contrary, the
of this all-round Vedic theologian.
Kaush. Br. VI,

1 1

raises the rather one-sided claim that


2

Vasish//^a was
a Rig-veda scholar is the proper Brahman
a celebrated Brahman and Purohita, and the qualifications
.

were said for a time (probably by the descendants of Vasish//^a themselves) to be especially at home in
this family. But the Brahma/^a-texts declare explicitly that
for this office

uberwundener standpunkt,' an obsolete custom


may be a Brahman see Weber,
There is no original connection
Ind. Stud. X, 34. 35. 137.
between Vasish/^a and the Atharvan 3 and it is not going
too far to assume that the distinguished abilities demanded
by the theory of this office were rare enough to admit every

this

'

an

is

every one properly equipped

one that had

How,

intrinsically valid claims

then, did the Atharvans

that the

Brahman must be one

consequently,

upon

come

it.

to raise the plea

and that,
Brahma-veda ?

of themselves,

the Atharva-veda was

the

Schematically this was suggested by an obvious proportion.


the hotar, &c, is to the Rig-veda, &c, so the Brahman
is to the fourth Veda, and as the Atharvan is the fourth

As

Veda, or rather a fourth Veda, it required no too violent


wrench to identify it with that other comprehensive fourth
Veda, the knowledge of the brahma. Thus the Atharvan
1

See the author, Journ. Amer. Or. Soc. XV, pp. 172, 184 ff.
A broader view, yet one that ignores the Atharvan claim,

Apastamba,

is

taken by

Ya^wa-paribhasha-sutra 19. There the Brahman is said to


three Vedas.
Only the commentator admits that the Atharvan

in the

perform with all


may be included.

Max Miiller, Ancient Sanskrit Literature, p. 470


Morgenl. Gesellsch. IX, p. xlvii Sacred Books, vol. xxx,
Cf. also ..Vat. Br. XI, 5, 8, 7, and Madhusudana's statement of the final
See

Zeitschr. d. Deutsch.
p. 321.

Max Miiller, ib. 445 ff. Ind. Stud. I, 4. 14.


interesting association of VasishMa with the redaction of the Atharvan,
reported by Mallinatha in his comment on Kiratar^uniya X, 10, may be
founded upon this very title to the office of purohita, and thus show that
orthodox view,
3

The

purohitas were naturally supposed to be Atharvavedins

[42]

cf.

above,

p. lv.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

lxvi

The

became the Brahma-veda.

fact

that there

was no

systematic sharply-defined provision for the Atharvanists


in the scheme of the hieratic religion must have been

arrangement was

galling at first, until this


to their own satisfaction.

do not know that they

They may

did,

completed

have, though

gathered courage

for

we
this

by the frequent mention in the AV. itself


of the word brahma in the sense of charm, prayer, e.g.
If this was done it was a
I, 10, i; 14, 44; 23, 4, &c.
proceeding both arbitrary and superficial the word has
in the AV. the meaning of charm only in so far and
inasmuch as the hymns of that Veda happen to be charms
the RV. employs the term freely to designate its own

tour de force

suktani (e.g. V, 85, 1 VII, 28, 1


X, 13, 1 61,1).
36, 1
One misses, too, the plural brahmam as the true Vedic type
of designation for a special class of composition, on a level
;

with
va.na./i

may

riks-h,

samani, yagiwishi, atharvarigirasa//, or athar-

(bhesha^ani)
also

remember

and

ahgirasa//

that

the Atharvan of

(abhi^arika/n).
all

We

Sa;;mitas

contains the largest collection of theosophic hymns which


deal explicitly (X, 2), or implicitly (X, 7), with Brahman

and the brahma

This may, of course, have helped to


suggest that the Atharvavedin was the truly superior theoIn the Upanishads the knowledge of just such
logian.
theosophic relations is styled the brahmavidya. Sayawa
.

the Introduction

in

to

the AV.,

p.

4,

argues that the

AV. is known as Brahma-veda because it was revealed to


Brahman who is called Atharvan 2 His authority, however,
is Gop. Br. I, 4 ff., a text that elsewhere identifies the AV.
.

with that bhuyish///am brahma which was produced by the


tapas (cf. AV. VIII, 10, 25), pressing to an unwarranted
degree the relationship of the Atharvan texts with the
3
cf. above, p. lix.
sphere of the Upanishads
It may be safe to assume that all these and other notions
;

Cf. also the superabundant Upanishads, composed in Atharvanic schools.


atharvakhyena brahmawa drzsh/atvat tannamna ayaw vedo vyapadijyate.

Similarly the Vish/nvpurawa VI, 5 (Wilson's translation, vol. v, p. 210)


also states that there are two kinds of knowledge.
By the one which
:

'

The AV.

is the supreme, God (akshara)


fiik and other Vedas.'

is

obtained

the other

is

that

which consists of

INTRODUCTION.

XV11

through the minds of the systematic theologians


of the Atharvan schools as they
continued
T>
f
J
Relation of

flitted

upon the name Brahma-veda for


their scriptures, and upon the office of BrahA measure of substantiality may,
their priests.

the purohita

man

for

to

insist

however, come to their claim from another quarter at


a comparatively early time, in this instance with the passive
support of all Vedic schools. The matter concerns the
office of the purohita, the spiritual and temporal aid of the

One would again look


vain in the non-Atharvanic Sawhitas, Brahma//as, or
Siitras for the direct declaration that the purohita either
These
was, or should be, an adherent of the Atharvan.
king, his chaplain, and chancellor.

in

do not mention the Atharvan in this connection any


more than in connection with the office of the Brahman
Yet it seems extremely unlikely that the
at the sacrifice.
Atharvan
of
practices should not have been
knowledge

texts

considered a very valuable adjunct, if not a conditio sine


Purohitas, whether they are
qua non, of the purohiti.

AV. or not, are always engaging


even
in Atharvanic practices,
against one another (cf. Max
Muller, Ancient Sanskrit Literature, p. 486). The interests

formal adherents of the

of the king and his sovereignty (kshatriya and kshatram)


are too obviously dependent upon magic rites to admit
the likelihood that the pretensions to this office on the
part

At

of

him that knew them should have been ignored.

periods the safety of the king, the prosperity of his


people, his ascendency over hostile neighbours, must have
all

depended upon the

skill

The

of his purohita in magic.

description, Ait. Br. VIII, 24-28, of the purohita, his functions, and his relation to the king, transfer the reader to

the

sphere and

spirit

of the Atharvan.

The

purohita

secures for the king royalty, strength, empire, and people


The purohita is a fire with five flaming
(VIII, 24, 7).
but,
dangerous when not properly propitiated
him
with
the
embraces
he
king,
protecting
duly honoured,
his flames as the ocean the earth (VIII, 25, 1). His people
do not die young, his own life's breath does not leave him
missiles,

before he has reached the

full limits

e 2

of his

life,

he

lives to

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

lxviii

a good old age,


ledge,

is

a Brahma/za, imbued with this know-

if

his purohita, the shepherd of his

The

kingdom.

subjects of such a king are loyal and obedient (VIII, 25,


The prescriptions regarding the purohita are fol2. 3).
rite, called brahmawa/^ parito
kill
hostile
mara, designed
kings, which might have
In later
found a place in the ritual of the Atharvan 1

lowed (VIII, 25) by a magic

texts, as a matter of fact, the rule

is

laid

down

that the purohita should be an Atharvavedin.


Gaut. XI, 15. 17 Yagtiav. I, 312 (cf. also Manu XI,
;

formally

Thus

^)

in

see

Saya/za in the Introduction to the AV.,


pp. 5, 6, claims outright that the office of purohita belongs
ka atharvavidai*va kato the Atharvanists (paurohitya;
p. xlviii,

above.

ryam), and he is able to cite in support of his claim not


only the rather hysterical dicta of the Atharvan writings,
.riokas from a number of Purawas, the Nituastra,
2
In the Dajakumara-arita magic
above, p. lvi
rites, as well as the marriage ceremony, are in fact performed at the court of a king with Atharvan rites athar-

but also
&c.

cf.

vazzena (atharvawikena) vidhina, and the statement


more valuable as it is incidental see above, p. lv.

the

is

do not desire to enter here upon a discussion of the


question of the original relation between the purohita and
the brahman, whose identity is baldly assumed in many
I

3
I believe that
passages of the earlier Hindu literature
they were not originally the same, but that they were
.

bound together by

certain specific

ties.

They

are similar,

1
Cf. the battle-charm, AV. Ill, 19
the purohita figures in it as well as in
the accompanying performances, Kaus. 14, 22-23 (Darila).
And RV. IV, 50,
7-9, perhaps earlier, shows the brehaspati (purohita) in essentially the same
important relation to the king.
:

Cf.

Deva

at

Katy. St.

XV,

kapaushrikabhiarakarmaaw
3

Cf.

Max

Muller,

II, purohito yo*tharvavedavihitana;

7,

santi-

karta.

History of Ancient

Sanskrit Literature, p. 4S5

ff.

Weber, Ind. Stud. X, 31 ff Rausuya, p. 23, note; Haug, Brahma und die
Brahmanen, p. 9 ff.
Geldner, Vedische Studien, II, 144 ff. Oldenberg, Die
Religion des Veda, pp. 374, 395 ff.
Sayaa at RV. VII, 33, 14 equates
purohita and brahman, and Ait. Br. VII, 16, 1 exhibits Vasish//za, the typical
At RV. IV, 50, 7 ff. the
purohita, in the office of brahman at a jrauta-rite.
.

activity of a purohita
(

= brahman).

is

sketched

the purohita, however,

is

called br/haspati

INTRODUCTION.
above

IxiX

in this, that they have in charge, each in his


the general interests of their noble employers,
whereas other priests are likely ordinarily to have had
all,

own way,

only subordinate charges, because of the technical character of their

knowledge and occupation.

RV. X,

71, 11

expresses clearly the existence of broader theological interests than the mere knowledge of the recitation and

chanting of

hymns and

mechanical service

the

of the

and adhvaryu). This is the Brahforks into two directions, on one side

sacrifice (hotar, udgatar,

manship which

later

the general knowledge of the procedures at the sacrifice


(the Brahman as fourth priest), and the theological speculaon the other, the higher
tions attaching (brahmavadin)
;

theosophy which leads ultimately to the brahmavidya of


It is natural that a divine thus qualified
the Upanishads.
should at a very early time assume permanent and confidential relations to the noble ra^anya in all matters that
concerned his religious and sacrificial interests. His functions are those of chaplain and high-priest.
It seems
unlikely that this Brahman was in all cases, too, competent
to attend to those more secular and practical needs of the
king connected with the security of his kingdom, the fealty
of his people, and the suppression of his enemies.
These
activities,

ra^akarmawi, as the Atharvan writings

call

them,

must have

called for different training and different talents


they represent rather the functions of a chancellor, or
and there is no
prime-minister, than those of a chaplain

warrant to assume that every Brahman possessed these


addition to his expertness in
the other hand, conversely, there
must have been purohitas incapable of assuming the charge
of their employers' interests on the occasion of the more

necessary qualifications
systematic theology.

in

On

elaborate Vedic performances


that in such cases the

and his

And

(.yrauta),

Brahman was

unless

we

conceive

a mere figure-head

office a sinecure.

yet precisely here

is

to be found the

measure of

we may suspect in the Atharvanist claim that


supervising Brahman shall be an adherent of the AV.

truth which

the
In

many

cases the tribal king, or ra^a, might have had but


c 3

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

IxX

one body-priest, well capable of attending to the kingdom's


needs in all manner of charms and sorcery, and thus filling
the paurohitya creditably with the entire armament of the
If
of charms and sorcery, himself an Atharvavedin.

Veda

had about him no systematic theologian resplendent in his ^-atavidya, if there was no adherent of that
ideal fourth Veda, the sarvavidya that looms above the
the king

trayi vidya, the remoter applicability of the ^rauta-practices


to the weal and woe of everyday life, or confidence in the
ability of hotar,

adhvaryu,

&c,

to

perform their duties

correctly of themselves, would lead him to entrust the


general supervision of the Vedic performances (in the nar-

rower sense) to his Atharvan purohita.

Thus the sweeping

claim of the Atharvan priests may be founded at least


upon a narrow margin of fact, and later the Atharvan

have equipped themselves with a sufficiency of rather external and mechanical knowledge to
priests are likely to

perform the function of Brahman with a show of respectability,

rites

witness the activity of the Brahman in the jrautaIn very late times the ability

of the Vaitana-sutra.

priests to practise jrauta-rites, and the


of
their
jrauta-manual, the Vaitana-sutra, were
canonicity
other
Vedic schools, if the matter-of-fact
recognised by

of

Atharvan

references to that Sutra on the part of the commentators


to Katyayana's 6Yauta-sutras may be regarded as normal
see Garbe in the preface to the edition of the Vait. Su.,
;

p. vi.

We

may remark, however, that the entire question of


the relation of the AV. to ^rauta-practices is a very obscure
point
the AV. to
the srauts.ritual.

form

is

in

the

history

of Vedic literature,

at

it

being assumed generally that the Atharvan


j^ orimnallv nothing to do with the larger
i_
j
Vedic ritual. The assumption in this broad

any

rate erroneous, or defective.

The

existing

Sawhitas of the AV. contain mantras which could have


had no sense and purpose except in connection with jrautaseries of formulas, e. g. like AV. VI, 47
performances.
and 48, has no meaning except in connection with the
three daily pressures of soma (savana), and the Vait. Su.

INTRODUCTION.

lxxi

21,7 exhibits them, properly no doubt, as part of an ordinary jrauta-rite, the agnish/oma. It would seem then that
the Atharvavedins possessed the knowledge of, and pracjrauta-rites prior to the conclusion of the present
redactions of their hymns, and thus perhaps, after all, the

tised

of his

case

in

purohita,

being

an

for taking a

altogether unequipped
Vedic rites with the three

Again, the

of priests.

fires

AV.

Atharvan, was not


in the broader

hand

and the usual assortment

contains

hymns which

are

evidently expiatory formulas for faults committed at the


Thus AV. VI, 114 presents itself in the light of
sacrifice.
an ordinary praya^itta- formula, and there are MSS. of the

Vaitana-sutra which add six praya^itta chapters to the


1
The Gop.
eight which make up the body of that text
.

more frequently than other Brahma;/as, refers to defects


yatayama) which are to be
corrected (sawdhana) by certain hymns, stanzas, and formulas see 1, 1, 13 and 22. Possibly the germs of the correlation of the Atharvan and the Brahman, in his function as
Br.,

in the sacrifice (virish/a, una,

supervisor and corrector of the sacrifice, may also turn out


to be traceable to a period prior to the present redaction
of the Sa;/zhitas.

present volume of translations comprises about one


third of the entire material of the Atharva-veda in the text

The

of the 5aunaka-school.

the fourth

spirit of

indicated

by

this

Veda

But

it

represents the contents and

in a far greater

numerical statement.

measure than

The

is

twentieth book

of the Sawhita, with the exception of the so-called kuntapa2


suktani (hymns 127-136 ), seems to be a verbatim repetition of mantras contained in the Rig-veda, being employed
in the Vaitana-sutra at the .rastras and stotras of the somasacrifice

it is

altogether foreign to the spirit of the original

See Garbe,

in

the preface of his edition of the text, p. 5


Weber, Verund Prakrit Handschriften, II, 8,? Kaimka, Introduction,
;

zeichniss der Sanskrit

p. xxxiii.
-

One

of these,

hymn

127, appears in the present volume, p. 197

ff.

lxxii

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

Atharvan.

The

nineteenth book

is

addendum

a late

1
,

in

omission (with the exception of


general very corrupt
hymns 26, 34, 3$, 38, 39, $3, and 54) does not detract much
from the general impression left by the body of the collec;

its

The seventeenth book

tion.

consists of a single

hymn

of

XV

and XVI, the former


Again, books
2
the latter almost entirely so,
entirely Brahmanical prose
are of doubtful quality and chronology.
Finally, books
XIV and XVIII contain respectively the wedding and
inferior interest.

funeral stanzas of the Atharvan,

and are largely coincident


tenth book of the

mantras of the

with

corresponding
Rig-veda
they are, granted their
3
Of the
specifically Atharvanic
:

intrinsic

interest,

not

Atharvan
there
is
here
about
one half,
(books I-XIII)
presented
that
half
which
the
the
seemed
to
translator
naturally
most interesting and characteristic. Since not a little of
the collection rises scarcely above the level of mere verbiage,
.

rest

of the

the process of exclusion has not called for any great degree
of abstemiousness.

These successive acts of exclusion have made it possible


to present a fairly complete history of each of the hymns
translated.
The employment of the hymns in the Atharvanic practices is in closer touch with the original purpose
of the composition or compilation of the hymns than is
true in the case of the other collections of Vedic hymns.

Many times,

though by no means

at all times, the practices

connected with a given

hymn present the key to the correct


of
the
interpretation
hymn itself. In any case it is instructive to see what the Atharvan priests did with the hymns
of their

own

school, even

if

we must judge

their performances

to be secondary.
I

do not consider any translation of the AV. at this time


The most difficult problem, hardly as yet ripe for

as final.
final

2
3

solution,

is

the original function of

many

mantras,

See Kaiuika, Introduction, p. xl ff.


Translated by Professor Aufrecht, Indische Studien, I, 130, 140.
The fourteenth book has been rendered by Professor Weber,

Indische
Studien, V, p. 195 ff.; the eighteenth book by the same scholar in the Proceedings of the Royal Prussian Academy, 1S95, p. 815 ff.
1896, p. 253 ff.
;

INTRODUCTION.
after

lxxiii

they have been stripped of certain adaptive modifica-

tions,

imparted to them to meet the immediate purpose


Not infrequently a stanza has to be

of the Atharvavedin.

rendered

when,

in

some measure of harmony with its connection,


a more original meaning, not at all applicable

in fact,

present environment, is but scantily covered up by


This garbled
the secondary modifications of the text.
tradition of the ancient texts partakes of the character
to

its

of popular etymology in the course of the transmission of


words. New meaning is read into the mantras, and any
little stubbornness on their part is met with modifications
of their wording. The critic encounters here a very difficult
situation
searching investigation of the remaining Vedic
:

is necessary before a bridge can be built from


the more original meaning to the meaning implied and
required by the situation in a given Atharvan hymn. Needless to say the only correct and useful way to translate

collections

a mantra in the Atharvan,

which

it

has received

in

is

by no means

collections are

to reproduce

free

it

with the bent

The

the Atharvan.

other Vedic

from the same

taint.

The

Vedic tradition, the Rig-veda not excepted, presents


rather the conclusion than the beginning of a long period

entire

of literary

activity.

Conventionality

of subject-matter,

style, form (metre), &c, betray themselves at every step


the earliest books of the RV. are not exempt from the
same processes of secondary grouping and adaptation of
their mantras, though these are less frequent and less
:

'

'

obvious than

is

the case in the Atharva-veda.

Obligations to previous translators

Zimmer,

duction to

Weber, Muir, Ludwig,

Henry, &c, are acknowledged in the introI


each hymn.
regret that the work was in the

Grill

hands of the printer prior to the appearance of Professor


2
The late
Henry's excellent version of books X-XII
lamented Professor Whitney kindly furnished me with the
.

Grill's

work, entitled, Hundert Lieder des Atharva-veda, second edition

V My

own six series of Contributions to the Interpre(1888), is cited as Grill


tation of the Veda, are cited for the sake of brevity as Contributions.'
'

'

Les

livres

X, XI,

et

XII de

1'

Atharva-veda.

Paris, 1S96.

Ixxiv

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

advance sheets of the

late

Shankar Pandurang Pandit's


commentary,
Cashmir text

scholarly edition of the AV. with Saya;/a's


as also with many of the readings of the

Neither the
(the so-called Paippalada-j-akha) of the AV.
Paippalada nor Sayawa sensibly relieves the task of its
difficulty

and responsibility.

MAURICE BLOOMFIELD.
Johns Hopkins University,
Baltimore: April,

1S96.

HYMNS
OF THE

ATH ARVA-VEDA

HYMNS
OF THE

ATHARVA-VEDA
i.

CHARMS TO CURE DISEASES AND POSSESSION BY


DEMONS OF DISEASE (BHAISHAGYANI).
V,

Charm

against takman (fever)


related diseases.

May Agni

i.

may
skill

22.

drive the

and

takman away from

here,

Soma, the press-stone, and Variwa, of tried


may the altar, the straw (upon the altar), and

the brightly-flaming" fagots (drive him away)


to naught shall go the hateful powers

Away

Thou

2.

makest

that

all

men

sallow,

inflaming

even now, O takman, thou


shalt become void of strength
do thou now go

them

like a searing fire,

away down, aye, into the depths


takman that is spotted, covered with
3. The
spots, like reddish sediment, him thou, (O plant) of
unremitting potency, drive away down below
4. Having made obeisance to the takman, I cast
him down below let him, the champion of Sakam!

bhara, return again to the Mahavrz'shas


5. His home is with the Mu^avants, his
!

[42]

home

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

From

with the Mahavrzshas.

the

moment

of thy

birth thou art indigenous with the Balhikas.


6.
takman, vyala, vi gada, vyanga, hold off

(thy

missile)

far

Seek the gadabout

slave-girl,

strike her with thy bolt


takman, go to the
7.
!

Balhikas farther

female
8.

Go

away

takman, give a good shaking-up


away to the Mahavrz'shas and the Mufa-

her,

Mu^avants, or to the
Seek the lecherous 6udra!

vants, thy kinsfolk,

and consume them

Those

do we bespeak for the takman, or these


here
other (than ours).
regions
in
other
9. (If)
regions thou dost not abide, mayest
(regions)

thou that art powerful take pity on us


Takman,
now, has become eager he will go to the Balhikas.
!

When

10.

liriously hot,

thou, being cold,

and then again de-

accompanied by cough, didst cause the


were
O

takman, thy missiles


(sufferer) to shake, then,
from these surely exempt us
terrible
!

By no means ally thyself with balasa, cough


and spasm
From there do thou not return hither
O
takman, do I ask of thee
again that,
12. O takman, along with thy brother balasa,
11.

along with thy sister cough, along with thy cousin

paman, go to yonder foreign folk


13. Destroy the takman that returns on (each)
third day, the one that intermits (each) third day,
the one that continues without intermission, and the
autumnal one destroy the cold takman, the hot,
him that comes in summer, and him that arrives in
!

the rainy season


14. To the Gandharis, the Miyavants, the Angas,
and the Magadhas, we deliver over the takman, like
!

a servant, like a treasure

CHARMS TO CURE

Charm

VI, 20.
1.

As

from

if

against

this

Agni

DISEASES.

takman

(fever).

that

(fire),

burns and

Let him then, too,


flashes, (the takman) comes.
as a babbling drunkard, pass away! Let him, the
impious one, search out some other person, not
ourselves

Reverence be

burning weapon

to the

takman with the

be to Rudra, reverence to the


to the luminous king Varu^a
reverence
takman,
Reverence to heaven, reverence to earth, reverence
2.

Reverence

to the plants

To

here, that burnest through, and


bodies
turnest
yellow, to the red, to the brown,
to the takman produced by the forest, do I render
3.

thee

all

obeisance.

I,

25.

Charm

takman

against

(fever).

1. When
Agni, having entered the waters, burned,
where the (gods) who uphold the order (of the

universe) rendered
say,

is

O takman
Whether thou

spare us,
2.

(to

Agni), there, they


feel for us,

and

whether thou

art

do thou

art

flame,

whether from licking chips (of wood) thou

heat, or

HrfWu by name

hast arisen,

art thou,

god of

do thou feel for us, and spare


takman
art burning, whether thou
3. Whether thou

the yellow

homage

thy origin on high

us,

scorching,

or whether

Varuwa, HrtWu by name


do thou feel for
yellow
:

takman

art

son of king
art thou, O god of the

thou

b 2

art

us,

the

and spare

us,

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

To

4.

the

cold takman, and to the deliriously

the glowing, do

hot,

To him
him that returns for
the takman that returns

render homage.

that returns on the morrow, to

two (successive) days, to


on the third day, homage
VII, 116.

Homage

1.

Charm
(be)

be

shall

against

the

to

takman

(fever).

deliriously

hot,

the

shaking, exciting, impetuous (takman)! Homage to


the cold (takman), to him that in the past fulfilled
desires
!

2. May (the
takman) that returns on the morrow,
he that returns on two (successive) days, the impious

one, pass into this frog

V,

Prayer to the kushMa-plant to destroy

4.

takman
1.

Thou

that art born

(fever).

upon the mountains, as


come hither, O kushMa,

the most potent of plants,


destroyer of the takman, to drive out from here the

takman

To

thee (that growest) upon the mountain, the


brooding-place of the eagle, (and) art sprung from
2.

Himavant, they come with treasures, having heard

For they
(thy fame).
of
the
takman.
stroyer
3.

The

aivattha-tree

know
is

(thee to be) the de-

the seat of the gods in


There the gods pro-

the third heaven from here.

cured

the

kushMa, the

visible

manifestation

of

amrz'ta (ambrosia).

golden ship with golden tackle moved upon


There the gods procured the kushMa,
the flower of amn'ta (ambrosia).
4.

the heavens.

CHARMS TO CURE

DISEASES.

The

paths were golden, and golden were the


golden were the ships, upon which they carried forth the kushf/ia. hither (to the mountain).
5.

oars

This person here,

6.

and cure him

me
7. Thou

for

kush//a, restore for me,


Render him free from sickness

art

born of the gods, thou art Soma's

Be thou

propitious to my in-breathing
good
and my out-breathing, and to this eye of mine
8. Sprung in the north from the Himavant (mounfriend.

tains),

thou art brought to the people in the

There the most superior


were apportioned.
'

Superior,'

9.
is

the

name

varieties of the

east.

kushMa
'

superior
thy name
Do thou drive out all
'

kush///a,

is

of thy father.

disease, and render the takman devoid of strength


10. Pain in the head, affliction in the eye, and
!

ailment of the body, all that shall the kush///a


a divinely powerful (remedy), forsooth
heal
!

XIX,

Prayer to the kush/^a-plant to destroy

39.

takman

May

1.

and other ailments.

(fever),

the protecting god kush///a

come

hither

from the Himavant destroy thou every takman,


and all female spooks
:

Three names hast thou,

kushMa, (namely
and
'),
kush/yfca), na-gha-mara ('
Verily no harm
na-gha-risha (' forsooth-no-harm ').
2.

forsooth -no -death

shall suffer (na

whom
day
3.

gha

rishat) this

person here, for

bespeak thee morn and eve, aye the

(entire)

Thy

mother's

thy father's

name

name
is

is

^ivanta

^ivala ('quickening'),
('living').

Verily no

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

harm

shall suffer this person here, for

whom

be-

speak thee morn and eve, aye the entire day


4. Thou art the most superior of the plants, as
!

a steer

among

cattle, as

the tiger

among

beasts of

prey.
Verily no harm shall suffer this person here,
for whom I bespeak thee morn and eve, aye the
entire day
5. Thrice begotten by the 6ambu Angiras, thrice
by the Adityas, and thrice by all the gods, this
!

kush/z&a, a universal

remedy, stands together with


thou
Destroy
every takman, and all female

soma.

spooks
6.

The

ajvattha-tree

is

the seat of the gods in

the third heaven from here.

There came

to sight

the amrz'ta (ambrosia), there the kushMa-plant was


born.
7.

golden ship with golden tackle moved upon

There came to sight the amrz'ta, there


the kush//za-plant was born.
8. On the spot where the ship glided down, on
the peak of the Himavant, there came to sight the
This
ambrosia, there the kushMa-plant was born.
the heavens.

kush///a, a universal

remedy, stands together with


thou
Destroy
every takman, and all female

soma.
spooks

whom

Ikshvaku knew of yore,


whom the women, fond of kush///a, knew, whom
Vayasa and Matsya knew therefore art thou a
9.

(We know)

thee

universal remedy.
10.

The takman

the one

that returns on each third day,


that continues without intermission, and

the yearly one, do thou, (O plant)


strength, drive away down below
!

of unremitting

CHARMS TO CURE

I,

DISEASES.

Prayer to lightning, conceived as the cause


of fever, headache, and cough.

12.

i. The first red bull, born of the


(cloud-)womb,
born of wind and clouds, comes on thundering with

rain.

May

he, that cleaving

our bodies; he who, a single


threefold

moves

straight on, spare


has
force,
passed through

Bowing down to thee that fastenest thyself with


heat upon every limb, we would reverence thee with
oblations
we would reverence with oblations the
crooks and hooks of thee that hast, as a seizer, seized
2.

the limbs of this person.

Free him from headache and also from cough,


(produced by the lightning) that has entered his
May the flashing (lightning), that is
every joint
born of the cloud, and born of the wind, strike the
trees and the mountains
4. Comfort be to my upper limb, comfort be to
my nether comfort be to my four members, comfort
3.

to

entire

my

Charm

22.

I,

body

against jaundice and related


diseases.

jaundice
thee

go thy heart-ache and thy


the colour of the red bull do we envelop

to the sun shall

Up

1.

in

2.

May

We

envelop thee

this

person go unscathed, and be

colour
3.

in red tints,

unto long

life.

free of yellow

The cows whose

divinity

is

Rohi^i, they who,

moreover, are (themselves) red (roh'iui/i) (in their)


every form and every strength we do envelop thee.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.


4. Into the parrots, into the ropawakas (thrush)
do we put thy jaundice, and, furthermore, into the
haridravas (yellow wagtail) do we put thy jaundice.

VI,
1.

14.

The

Charm

against the disease balasa.


that

disease

internal

has set

in,

that

crumbles the bones, and crumbles the joints, every


balasa do thou drive out, that which is in the limbs,

and

in the joints

2.

do

The

balasa of him that

is afflicted

with balasa

remove, as one gelds a lusty animal. Its conI cut off as the root of a pumpkin.
Fly forth from here, O balasa, as a swift foal

nection do
3.

(after the mare).

year, pass

And

away without

VI, 105.
1.

As

distance

even, as the reed in every


slaying

Charm

men

against cough.

the soul with the soul's desires swiftly to a


flies, thus do thou,
cough, fly forth along

the soul's course of flight


2. As a well-sharpened arrow swiftly to a distance
flies, thus do thou,
cough, fly forth along the
!

expanse of the earth


3. As the rays of the sun swiftly to a distance fly,
thus do thou,
cough, fly forth along the flood of
!

the sea

Charm

I, 2.

1.

who

We

know

the father of the arrow, Par^anya,


furnishes bountiful fluid, and well do we know

his mother,
2.

against excessive discharges from


the body.

Pmhivf

(earth), the

multiform

bowstring, turn aside from us, turn

my body

CHARMS TO CURE
into stone

Do

DISEASES.

thou firmly hold very far away the

hostile powers and the haters


3. When the bowstring, embracing the wood
!

(of

the bow), greets with a whiz the eager arrow, do


thou,
Indra, ward off from us the piercing mis-

sile

As

the point (of the arrow) stands in the way


of heaven and earth, thus may the muz^a-grass
4.

unfailingly stand in the


sive) discharge

way

of sickness and (exces-

Charm

against excessive discharges from


the body, undertaken with spring-water.

II, 3.

spring- water yonder which runs down


upon the mountain, that do I render healing for
thee, in order that thou mayest contain a potent
1.

The

remedy.
2.

Then

3.

Deep down do

yea quite surely, of the hundred


remedies contained in thee, thou art the most superior
in checking discharges and removing pain.
surely,

and that

bury

The

this

great

for discharges,

that
ants bring the remedy from the sea
the cure for discharges, and that hath quieted

4.
is

the Asuras

wounds that is the cure


hath removed disease.

healer of

disease.
5. This great healer of wounds has been gotten
out of the earth that is the cure for discharges, and
:

that hath

removed

disease.

waters afford us welfare, may the


May
herbs be propitious to us Indra's bolt shall beat off
6.

the

the Rakshas, far (from us) shall


by the Rakshas
!

fly

the arrows cast

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

IO

Charm

VI, 44.

1.

against excessive discharges from


the body.

The heavens have

stood

still, all

stood

still,

creatures have stood

that sleep erect have stood


of thine stand still

still

the earth has

The

still.

may

trees

this disease

Of

the hundred remedies which thou hast, of


the thousand that have been collected, this is the
2.

most excellent cure

for discharges, the best

remover

of disease.
3.

Thou

art the urine of

amn'ta (ambrosia).

Rudra, the navel of

Thy name,

forsooth,

visha-

is

aka, (thou art) arisen from the foundation of the


Fathers, a remover of diseases produced by the

winds (of the body).

Charm

I, 3.

1.

We

know

against constipation and retention


of urine.
the father of the arrow, Par^anya, of

hundredfold power. With this (charm) may I render


comfortable thy body make thy outpouring upon the
:

earth

out of thee

may

it

come with

the sound bal

5.

We know the father of the arrow, Mitra, &c.


We know the father of the arrow, Varu^a, &c.
We know the father of the arrow, A'andra, &c.
We know the father of the arrow, Surya, &c.

6.

That which has accumulated

2.
3.

4.

in

thy entrails, in

thy canals, in thy bladder thus let thy urine be


released, out completely, with the sound bal
!

open thy penis like the dike of a lake


thy urine be released, out completely, with
the sound bal
7.

thus

split

let

CHARMS TO CURE

I.

DISEASES.

the opening of thy bladder like the


ocean, the reservoir of water thus let thy urine be
released, out completely, with the sound bal

Relaxed

8.

is

9. As an arrow flies to a distance when hurled


from the bow thus let thy urine be released, out
completely, with the sound bal
!

VI, 90.

Charm

against internal pain


to the missiles of Rudra.

(colic),

due

The arrow

that Rudra did cast upon thee, into


and
into
(thy) limbs,
thy heart, this here do we now
draw out away from thee.
2. From the hundred arteries which are distributed
along thy limbs, from all of these do we exorcise
1.

forth the poisons.

Adoration be to thee,

3.

Rudra, as thou casteth

(thy arrow) adoration to the (arrow) when it has


been placed upon (the bow) adoration to it as it is
being hurled adoration to it when it has fallen
;

down

I,

10.

Charm

against dropsy.

This Asura rules over the gods; the commands of Varu^a, the ruler, surely come true.
From this (trouble), from the wrath of the mighty
1.

(Varu^a), do
this
2.

I,

excelling in

my

incantation, lead out

man.

O
falsehood, O

Reverence,

for all

king Varuwa, be to thy wrath,


mighty one, dost thou discover.

thousand others together do I make over to thee


this thy (man) shall live a hundred autumns

From

the untruth which thou hast spoken, the


abundant wrong, with thy tongue from king Varuwa
3.

release thee,

whose laws do not

fail.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

12

release thee from Vaisvanara (Agni), from the


Our rivals,
flood.
mighty one, do thou cen-

4.

great
sure here, and give heed to our prayer

Charm

VII, 83.

against dropsy.

is built in
golden chamber, king Variwa,
Thence the king that maintains the
the waters!
laws shall loosen all shackles

Thy

1.

From

habitation

(of
every
Varuwa, from here do thou free us
2.

thine),
!

In that

king

we have

in that we have said,


ye waters, ye cows
'O Varuwa,' from this (sin), O Vanma, free us!
O Varu^a, the uppermost fetter,
3. Lift from us,
take down the nethermost, loosen the middlemost
Then shall we, O Aditya, in thy law, exempt from
'

'

said,

freedom
Loosen from us,

in
guilt, live
4.

Varu^a,

all

fetters,

the

uppermost, the nethermost, and those imposed by


Evil dreams, and misfortune drive away
Varu^a
then may we go to the world of the
from us
!

pious

VI, 24.
Dropsy, heart-disease, and kindred
maladies cured by flowing water.
1.

From

the

forth, in the

Himavant (mountains) they

Sindhu (Indus), forsooth,

is

flow

their as-

may the waters, indeed, grant me


sembling-place
that cure for heart-ache
2. The pain that hurts me in the eyes, and that
:

which hurts in the heels and the fore-feet, the


waters, the most skilled of physicians, shall put all
that to rights
3.

Ye

rivers

all,

whose mistress

is

Sindhu, whose

I.

CHARMS TO CURE

DISEASES.

Sindhu, grant us the remedy for that


through this (remedy) may we derive benefit from

queen

you

is

VI, 80. An oblation to the sun, conceived as one of


the two heavenly dogs, as a cure for paralysis.
air he flies, looking down upon
the
with
majesty of the heavenly dog,
beings
with that oblation would we pay homage to thee

Through the

1.

all

The

2.

three

kalaka^a

that are fixed

upon the

sky like gods, all these I have called for help, to


render this person exempt from injury.
3. In the waters is thy origin, upon the heavens
thy home,

in the

middle of the

sea,

and upon the

With the majesty of the


thy greatness.
with
that
oblation would we pay
heavenly dog,
homage to thee
earth

II, 8.

Charm

against kshetriya, hereditary


disease.

1.

have

Up

vikritdM

('

majestic twin stars, the


the two looseners ') may they loosen the
risen

the

nethermost and the uppermost


(inherited disease)
2.

May

fetter of the kshetriya

this night shine (the kshetriya)

away,

may

she shine away the witches may the plant, destructive of kshetriya, shine the kshetriya away
3. With the straw of thy brown barley, endowed
;

with white stalks, with the blossom of the sesame


may the plant, destructive of kshetriya, shine the
kshetriya
4.

away

Reverence be to thy ploughs, reverence

to thy

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

14

wagon-poles and yokes

May

the plant, destructive

of kshetriya, shine the kshetriya away


5. Reverence be to those with sunken eyes (?),
reverence to the indigenous (evils ?), reverence to
!

the lord of the

field

May

the plant, destructive of

kshetriya, shine the kshetriya

II, 10.

Charm

away

against kshetriya, hereditary


disease.

From

kshetriya (inherited disease), from Nirrzti


(the goddess of destruction), from the curse of the
kinswoman, from Druh (the demon of guile), from
1.

the fetter of Varu/za do

release thee.

do I render thee through my charm


and earth both be propitious to thee

Guiltless

may heaven

2.

May Agni together with the waters be


may Soma

auspicious

be
Thus from kshetriya, from Nirrz'ti, from
auspicious.
the curse of the kinswoman, from the Druh, from
Guiltless
the fetter of Varima do I release thee.
do I render thee through my charm; may heaven
to thee,

the

together with

plants

and earth both be propitious to thee


3. May the wind in the atmosphere auspiciously
bestow upon thee strength, may the four quarters
Thus from
of the heaven be auspicious to thee.
kshetriya, from Nirrzti &c.
4. These four goddesses, the directions of space,
!

the consorts of the wind, the sun surveys.


from kshetriya, from Nirrzti &c.

Thus

Within these

(directions) I assign thee to old


age; forth to a distance shall go Nirrzti and disease
Thus from kshetriya, from Nirrzti &c.
5.

6.

Thou

hast been released from disease, from

CHARMS TO CURE

I.

mishap, and from blame;

DISEASES.

out from

the

fetter of

Druh, and from Grahi (the demon of fits) thou hast


been released. Thus from kshetriya, from Nirrzti &c.
behind Arati (the demon of
7. Thou didst leave
grudge), didst obtain prosperity, didst enter the
Thus from kshetriya,
happy world of the pious.

from Nirmi &c.


8.

The

divine

gods, releasing the sun and the rz'tam (the


order of the universe) from darkness and

from Grahi, did take them out of


kshetriya, from NirWti &c.

Charm

Ill, 7.

sin.

Thus from

against kshetriya, hereditary


disease.

1.

the head of the nimble antelope a remedy


He has driven the kshetriya (inherited

Upon

grows!

by means of the horn.


The antelope has gone after thee with his four

disease) in
2.

directions

all

horn, loosen the kshetriya that


into his heart

feet.

is

knitted

3.

glistens yonder like a roof


(sides), with that do we drive out

(The horn) that

with four wings

every kshetriya from thy limbs.


4. The lovely twin stars, the vi/r/tau
are

('

the two

the

sky, shall
yonder upon
loosen the nethermost and the uppermost fetter of

looseners

')

that

the kshetriya
are healers, the waters are
5. The waters, verily,
scatterers of disease, the waters cure all disease
!

may
6.

they relieve thee from the kshetriya


The kshetriya that has entered into thee from
!

the prepared (magic) concoction, for that 1


remedy I drive the kshetriya out of thee.
:

know

the

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

When

7.

the

dawn

the constellations fade away, and


does fade away, (then) shall he shine

from us every
I,

evil

and the kshetriya

Born by night

1.

Do

sable.

art thou,

away

Leprosy cured by a dark

23.

when

plant.

plant, dark, black,

thou, that art rich in colour, stain this

and the gray spots


leprosy and the gray spots drive away
from here may thy native colour settle upon thee
leprosy,
2.

The

the white spots cause to

fly

away

Sable

is thy
hiding-place, sable thy dwellingart
sable
thou,
place,
plant: drive away from
here the speckled spots
3.

The

4.
leprosy which has originated in the bones,
and that which has originated in the body and upon

the skin, the white mark begotten of corruption,


I have
destroyed with my charm.
I,
1.

Leprosy cured by a dark

24.

The

eagle (supar^a) that

gall thou wast,


this (gall)
2.

The

gave

was born

plant.

at

first,

his

O plant. The Asuri having conquered


it

to the trees for their colour.

Asuri was the

first

to construct this

remedy

She has
destroyer of leprosy.
destroyed the leprosy, has made the skin of even
for

this

leprosy,

colour.

name of thy mother;


of thy father
thou,
even
render
this
colour
plant, producest
(spot) of
even colour
3.

'

'Even-colour'

Even-colour

'

is

the

is

the

name

4.

The

black (plant) that produces even colour has


Do thou now, pray,
earth.

been fetched out of the


perfect this, construct

anew the

colours

CHARMS TO CURE

I.

VI, 83.

1.

Fly

the nest

DISEASES.

Charm

for curing scrofulous sores


called apa/'it.

forth,

ye

an eagle from

apaX'it (sores), as

Siirya (the sun) shall prepare a remedy,


A'andramas (the moon) shall shine you away
!

One

variegated, one is white, one is black,


and two are red
I have
gotten the names of all
2.

is

Go

of them.

The

3.

ye away without slaying men


apa/'it, the daughter of the black one,
!

without bearing offspring


will

fly

away from

will

fly

away;

the boil

here, the galunta (swelling) will

perish.

Consume thy own (proper) oblation with gratimind, when I here offer svaha in my

4.

fication in thy

mind

VII, 76.

Charm for curing scrofulous


sores called apa/it.

A.

Ye

(sores) fall easily from that which falls


easily, ye exist less than those that do not exist (at
all)
ye are drier than the (part of the body called)
1.

sehu,
2.

more moist than

The

salt.

apa/'it (sores) that are

upon the neck, and

those that are upon the shoulders

the apa/vit that

are upon the vi^aman (some part of the body)


off of themselves.
B.

Charm

for curing

tumours called ^ayanya.

The^ayanya that crushes


passes down to the sole of the
3.

the ribs, that which


foot,

upon the crown of the head,


out every one.

is

fixed

[42]

fall

and whichever
I have driven

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

4.

The ^ayanya,

upon man.
caused by
cut

Here

winged,

flies;

he

settles

down

the remedy both for sores not


cutting, as well as for wounds sharply
is

5.

We

know, O^ayanya, thy origin, whence thou


How canst thou slay there, in whose

didst spring.

house we

Drink

Indra, slayer of Wz'tra, hero,


the cup, at the battle for riches
at the mid-day pressure
Living in

stoutly,

soma

of the

Stanza sung at the mid-day pressure


of the soma.

C.

6.

offer oblations

in

Drink thy fill


wealth, do thou bestow wealth upon us

VII, 74.

1.

We

A. Charm

for curing scrofulous sores


called apa&t.

have heard

said that the

it

black apa/it (pustules)


by) the divine sage do

red

is
I

mother of the

with the root (found

strike all these.

one of them, and I strike


also the middlemost of them
this hindmost one
2.

strike the foremost

cut off as a flake (of wool).

Charm

B.
3.

to

appease jealousy.

With Tvash/ar's charm

thy jealousy

also

have sobered down


thy anger, O lord, we have
I

quieted.

C.
4.

Do

Prayer to Agni, the lord of vows.


thou,

lord of vows, adorned with vows,

ever benevolently here shine


May we all, adoring
when
thou
hast
been
thee,
kindled, O 6atavedas, be
!

rich in offspring!

I.

VI,

CHARMS TO CURE

Charm

25.

DISEASES.

against scrofulous sores upon

neck and shoulders.


1.

The

five

and

fifty (sores)

that gather together

upon the nape of the neck, from here they

all shall

pass away, as the pustules of the (disease called)


apa/it
!

The seven and

seventy (sores) that gather together upon the neck, from here they all shall pass
away, as the pustules of the (disease called) apa/it
2.

The nine and

ninety (sores) that gather together


the
shoulders, from here they all shall pass
upon
away, as the pustules of the (disease called) apaiit
3.

VI, 57.

Urine (falasha) as a cure for


scrofulous sores.

1.

This, verily,

is

a remedy, this

is

the

remedy of

Rudra, with which one may charm away the arrow


that has one shaft and a hundred points
!

2.

With ^alasha

(urine)

do ye wash (the tumour),

with ^alasha do ye sprinkle it!


The ^ralasha is
a potent remedy
do thou (Rudra) with it show
:

to us, that

we may

live
mercy
3. Both well-being and comfort
nothing whatever shall injure us

the disease (shall

may

all

IV,

fall)

be ours, and

shall
!

To

the ground

may every remedy be

remedies be ours

ours,

Charm

with the plant arundhati


(laksha) for the cure of fractures.
12.

1. Roha^i art thou,


causing to heal (roha^i), the
broken bone thou causest to heal (roha;n) cause
:

this

here to heal (rohaya),

c 2

arundhati

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

20

That bone of

2.

thine which, injured

and

burst,

thy person, Dhatar shall kindly knit together again, joint with joint!
3. Thy marrow shall unite with marrow, and thy
the part of thy flesh that
joint (unite) with joint
exists in

has fallen
again
4.

and thy bone

off,

shall

grow together

Thy marrow

be joined together with

Thy
grow together with skin
flesh
bone
shall
thy
together
thy
grow,
grow

marrow,
blood,

shall

thy skin

with flesh

5. Fit together hair with hair, and fit together


skin with skin
Thy blood, thy bone shall grow
what is cut join thou together,
plant
:

Do

thou here

go forth, run forth, (as)


a chariot with sound wheels, firm feloe, and strong
nave stand upright firmly
6.

rise up,

if

7. If he has been injured by falling into a pit, or


a stone was cast and hurt him, may he (Dhatar,

the fashioner)

wagoner

V,

5.

joint to joint, as the

(Rzbhu) the parts of a chariot

Charm

with the plant sila/i (laksha,


arundhati) for the cure of wounds.

The
Aryaman
1.

him together,

fit

night

is

thy mother, the cloud thy father,

Sila/ti, forsooth, is thy


thy grandfather.
art
sister
of
the
thou
the
name,
gods.
2. He that drinks thee lives; (that) person thou

dost preserve.
For thou art the supporter of
successive (generations), the refuge of men.
3.

Every

tree

thou

lusting after a man.


'

saving,' verily,

is

dost

climb,

like

all

wench

'

'

Victorious,'

thy name.

firmly founded,'

CHARMS TO CURE

I.

4.

The wound

that has been inflicted

the arrow, or

by
do thou cure

by

by the

club.,

of that thou art the cure

fire,

person here

this

21

DISEASES.

5. Upon the noble plaksha-tree (ficus infectoria)


thou growest up, upon the ajvattha (ficus religiosa),

the khadira (acacia catechu), and the dhava (grislea


tomentosa) (thou growest up) upon the noble nya;

indica, banyan-tree),
thou to us,
(butea frondosa).

grodha

(ficus

Come

6.

gold-coloured,

handsome

Cure,' verily,

arundhati

sun-coloured,

most

mayest thou come to the fracture,

'

cure
7.

(plant),

lovely,

and the par^a

is

thy

name

gold-coloured, lovely, fiery (plant), with hairy


sister of the waters,
laksha, the

stem, thou art the

wind became thy very breath.


8. Silaii is thy name, O thou that

art

brown as
With
a goat, thy father is the son of a maiden.
the blood of the brown horse of Yama thou hast
been sprinkled.
9. Having dropped from the blood of the horse
she ran upon the trees, turning into a winged brook.

verily

Do

thou come to

VI, 109.
1.

The

The

us,

arundhati

pepper-corn as a cure for wounds.

pepper-corn cures the wounds that have

been struck by missiles, it also cures the wounds


Powerful
from stabs. Anent it the gods decreed
to secure life this (plant) shall be
one another, as
2. The pepper-corns spake to
He whom
been
created
came
after
out,
having
they
'

'

'

we shall find (as yet) alive, that man shall not suffer
harm
the
3. The Asuras did dig thee into the ground,
'

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

22

gods cast thee up again, as a cure for disease produced by wind (in the body), moreover as a cure for

wounds struck by
I,

i.

missiles.

Charm

17.

The maidens

to stop the flow of blood.

that

go yonder, the

veins, clothed

without a brother, bereft


garments,
stand
still
of strength, they shall
2. Stand still, thou lower one, stand still, thou
in red

like sisters

higher one

do thou

in the

middle also stand

The most

tiny (vein) stands still


great artery also stand still
3. Of the hundred arteries, and
:

may

still

then the

veins, those

At

still.

in the

the

the thousand
middle here have indeed stood

same time the ends have ceased

(to

flow).
4.

Around you has passed a great sandy dike

stand ye

still,

pray take your ease

II, 31.
1.

With

vermin, do

Charm

against worms.

Indra's great mill-stone, that crushes all


I
grind to pieces the worms, as lentils

with a mill-stone.

have crushed the visible and the invisible


worm, and the kururu, too, I have crushed. All the
algaWu and the ^aluna, the worms, we grind to
2.

pieces with our charm.

The

do I smite with a mighty weapon:


those that have been burned, and those that have
not been burned, have become devoid of strength.
Those that are left and those that are not left do I
destroy with my song, so that not one of the worms
be left.
3.

a.\gandi\

CHARMS TO CURE

The worm which

4.
is

is

DISEASES.

in the entrails,

in the head, likewise the one that

is

and he that
in the ribs

avaskava and vyadhvara, the worms, do we crush


with (this) charm.

The worms

5.

the

within

that are

mountains,

forests, plants, cattle, and the waters, those that


have settled in our bodies, all that brood of the

worms do

smite.

Charm

II, 32.
1.

sun

against

worms

in cattle.

The

rising sun shall slay the worms, the setting


with his rays shall slay the worms that are

within the cattle

2.

The

3.

Like Atri, like Kawva, and

variegated worm, the four -eyed, the


I crush his ribs, and I tear
speckled, and the white
off his head.

slay you, ye

Agastya do

worms

crush the

c7amadagni do
With the incantation of
like

worms

to pieces.
4. Slain is the king of the worms, and their viceroy
also is slain. Slain is the worm, with him his mother
slain, his
5.

brother

slain, his sister slain.

who

Slain are they

are his neighbours


are slain.

are inmates with him, slain

moreover

all

the quite tiny

worms

break off thy two horns with which thou


I cut that
deliverest thy thrusts
bag of thine which
6.

is

the receptacle for thy poison.

V, 23.
1.

called

Charm

against

worms

in children.

have called upon heaven and earth, I have


upon the goddess Sarasvati, I have called

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

24

upon Indra and Agni


(I

'

they shall crush the worm,'

said).
2.

Slay the worms

treasures

Slain

fierce imprecation

Him

Indra, lord of
boy,
the evil powers by my

in this

are

all

moves about

the eyes, that moves


about in the nose, that gets to the middle of the
3.

teeth, that
4.

that

worm do we

The two

in

crush.

of like colour, the two of different

the two black ones, and the two red ones


the brown one, and the brown-eared one
the (one

colour

like

a)

and the (one

vulture,

like

a)

cuckoo, are

slain.
5.

The worms

with white shoulders, the black


all those that are varie-

ones with white arms, and

gated, these worms do we crush.


6. In the east rises the sun, seen
by all, slaying
that which is not seen slaying the seen and the unseen
;

(worms), and grinding to pieces all the worms.


7. The yevasha and the kashkasha, the e^atka,
and the sipavitnuka the seen worm shall be slain,
moreover the unseen shall be slain
!

8.
is

Slain of the

worms

the nadaniman

lentils
9.

all

the yevasha, slain further


have I crushed down like
is

with a mill-stone.

The worm

with three heads and the one with

three skulls, the speckled, and the white


his ribs and I tear off his head.

crush

Ka/zva, and like 6"amadagni


do I slay you, ye worms
With the incantation of
I crush the worms to
do
Agastya
pieces.
10.

Like Atri,

like

11.

Slain

is

the king of the worms, and their

Slain is the worm, with him


viceroy also is slain.
his mother slain, his brother slain, his sister slain.

CHARMS TO CURE

I.

12. Slain are they


are his neighbours
worms are slain.

who

DISEASES.

25

are inmates with him, slain


all the quite tiny

moreover

Of all

the male worms, and of all the female


worms do I split the heads with the stone, I burn
their faces with fire.
13.

IV,
1.

Charm

6.

The Brahma^a was

against poison.

the

soma

be born, with

He was

ten heads and ten mouths.

drink the

to

first

the

first

to

that did render poison powerless.


2. As
great as heaven and earth are in extent, as
far as the seven streams did spread, so far from here

have

proclaimed forth

this

charm that destroys

poison.
3.

The

devour

Garutmant

eagle

thee.

Thou

did,
poison, first
didst not bewilder him, didst

not injure him, yea, thou didst turn into food for
him.

The

hand that did hurl upon thee


from the
the curved bow
even
from
(the arrow)
point of the tearing (arrow) have I charmed away
4.

five-fingered

the poison.
5.

away

From

the point (of the arrow) have I charmed


the poison, from the substance that has been

smeared upon it, and from its plume. From its


barbed horn, and its neck, I have charmed away the
poison.
6.
is

thy poison.

powerless bow,
7.

Powerless,

They

daubed

it

arrow,

is

thy point, and powerless

Moreover of powerless wood

that

powerless (arrow)

ground

(the

on, they that hurled

poison),
it,

is

thy

they that

and they that

let

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

26

these have been rendered impotent.


The
mountain that grows poisonous plants has been
it

all

go,

rendered impotent.

Impotent are they that dig thee, impotent art


O plant! Impotent is that mountain height
whence this poison has sprung.
8.

thou,

IV,
1.

ward

Charm

7.

This water

(var) in the (river)

off (varayatai)

poured

into

it

against poison.

Amnta

shall

(ambrosia) has been

with that do

Varawavati

ward

off (varaye)

poison from thee.


2. Powerless is the poison from the east, powerless that from the north. Moreover the poison from
the south transforms itself into a porridge.
3. Having made thee (the poison) that comes from
a horizontal direction into a porridge, rich in fat, and
cheering, from sheer hunger he has eaten thee, that

do thou not cause injury


Thy bewildering quality (madam), O (plant

hast an evil body


4.

that art bewildering (madavati), we cause to


a reed. As a boiling pot of porridge do we

?)

fall like

remove

thee by (our) charm.


5. (Thee, O poison) that art, as it were, heaped
about the village, do we cause to stand still by (our)

charm.

Stand

still

as a tree

upon

its

place

do

not,

thou that hast been dug with the spade, cause


injury

With

garments, and also


with skins they purchased thee a thing for barter
art thou, O plant
Do not, thou that hast been dug
6.

broom-straw

(?),

with the spade, cause injury!


7. Those of you who were of yore unequalled in

I.

CHARMS TO CURE

which

the deeds

injure here our

engage you

DISEASES.

2J

may

they not

they performed

men

for this

very purpose do

Ants as an antidote against poison.

VI, ioo.

i. The
gods have given, the sun has given, the
earth has given, the three Sarasvatis, of one mind,

have given
2.

That

this poison-destroying

water,

ants,

(remedy)

which the gods poured

for

you into the dry land, with this (water), sent forth
by the gods, do ye destroy this poison
!

3.

Thou

art the

daughter of the Asuras, thou art

the sister of the gods.


Sprung from heaven and
earth, thou didst render the poison devoid of
strength.

V,

13.

Charm

against snake-poison.

Varuwa, the sage of heaven, verily lends (power)


me. With mighty charms do I dissolve thy

1.

to

The (poison) which has been dug, that


poison.
which has not been dug, and that which is inherent,
I have held fast.
As a brook in the desert thy
dried
up.
poison has
2. That poison of thine which is not fluid I have
confined within these (serpents ?). I hold fast the sap
that is in thy middle, thy top, and in thy bottom, too.
May (the sap) now vanish out of thee from fright!
3.

cloud

My
:

charm.

lusty shout

then do

(is)

as the thunder with the

smite thy (sap) with my strong


With manly strength I have held fast that

sap of his.
darkness

May

the

sun

rise as

light

from the

4.

With my eye do

slay thy eye, with poison

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

28

do I slay thy poison. O serpent, die, do not


back upon thee shall thy poison turn

live

5.

kairata,

my

it

upatrzV/ya

known

(grass-

me; ye black

one, listen to

pulsive reptiles, (listen to


the ground of
friend

and make

one,

speckled

brown

dweller?),

re-

Do

not stand upon


me)
cease with your poison
!

people ?)
6. I release
(thee) from the fury of the black
serpent, the taimata, the brown serpent, the poison
that is not fluid, the all-conquering, as the bowstring

(is

(to

loosened) from the bow, as chariots (from

horses).

Both Aligi and Viligi, both father and mother,


we know your kin everywhere. Deprived of your
strength what will ye do ?
8. The
daughter of urugula, the evil one born
with the black
of all those who have run to their
7.

hiding-place the poison

is

devoid of

force.

The

prickly porcupine, tripping down from the


Whatsoever serpents,
mountain, did declare this
in
are
their
ditches,
here,
poison is most
living
9.

'

deficient in force.'
10.

Tabuvam

(or)

Through tabuvam thy poison

tabuvam.

art not

not tabuvam, thou (O serpent)


is

bereft of force.
11.

Tastuvam

(or)

art not tastuvam.

not tastuvam, thou (O serpent)

Through tastuvam thy poison

is

bereft of force.

VI,

12.

Charm

against snake-poison.

As

the sun (goes around) the heavens I have


surrounded the race of the serpents. As night (puts
to rest) all animals except the hamsa. bird, (thus) do
1.

with this (charm) ward off thy poison.

CHARMS TO CURE

I.

DISEASES.

20.

was found of yore by


the Brahmans, found by the 7?/shis, and found by
the gods, with (the charm) that was, will be, and is
now present, with this do I ward off thy poison.
the mounI mix the rivers
3. With honey do
tains and peaks are honey.
Honey are the rivers
Parush;/i and ^ipala.
Prosperity be to thy mouth,

With

2.

that

(the charm)

prosperity to thy heart

VII,

56.

Charm

against the poison of serpents,

scorpions,
1.

The

and

insects.

by the serpent that is


by the black serpent, and by the

poison

infused

striped across,
adder that poison of the kaiikaparvan
;

like a comb,' scorpion) this plant

('

with limbs

has driven out.

2. This
herb, born of honey, dripping honey,
sweet as honey, honied, is the remedy for injuries
moreover it crushes insects.

3.

Wherever thou hast been

wherever

bitten,

thou hast been sucked, from there do

we

exorcise

poison of the small, greedily biting


insect, (so that it be) devoid of strength.
without joints,
4. Thou (serpent) here, crooked,
for

thee the

and without limbs, that twisteth thy crooked jaws


mayest thou, O EWhaspati, straighten them out, as
a (bent) reed
5.

The

poison

of

the

i-arko/a

(scorpion)

that

creeps low upon the ground, (after he) has been


deprived of his strength, I have taken away moreover I have caused him to be crushed.
;

6.

There

no strength in thy arms, in thy head,


Then why dost
the middle (of thy body).
is

nor in
thou so wickedly carry a small (sting)

in

thy

tail

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

30

The

7.

ants devour thee, pea-hens hack thee to


Yea, every one of you shall declare the

pieces.

poison of the ^arko/a powerless


8.

(scorpion) that strikest with both, with


as well as tail, in thy mouth there is no

mouth
poison
in

then what can there be

VI,
.

Charm

16.

receptacle

against ophthalmia.

abayu, (and even


is

thy juice,
compounded of thee.

strong
2.

in the

tail ?

thy

Thou

Vihalha

thou art not abayu,

if)

abayu

We

eat a gruel,

thy father's name, Madavati thy


Thou art verily not such, as to

is

mother's name.
have consumed thy own self.
This howling one
3. O Tauvilika, do be quiet!
has become quiet. O brown one, and brown-eared
one,
4.

go away

Go

out,

Alasala thou art

ala

first,

sila^alala thou art the

next, nilagalasala (thou art third

VI, 21.

Charm

to

?)

promote the growth of

hair.

Of

these three earths (our) earth verily is the


From the surface of these I have now
highest.
1.

plucked a remedy.
2.

Thou

art the

most excellent of remedies, the

best of plants, as Soma (the moon) is the lord in


the watches of the night, as Varuwa (is king) among
the gods.

ye wealthy, irresistible (plants), ye do


generously bestow benefits. And ye strengthen the
hair, and, moreover, promote its increase.
3.

CHARMS TO CURE DISEASES.

I.

Charm

with the plant nitatni


the
promote
growth of hair.

VI, 136.
to

1. As a goddess upon the goddess earth thou


wast born, O plant
We dig thee up, O nitatni, that
thou mayest strengthen (the growth) of the hair.
!

Strengthen the old (hair), beget the new


That which has come forth render more luxurious!
2.

3.

that
I

That

hair of thine which does drop off,


which is broken root and all, upon it

and
do

sprinkle here the all-healing herb.

Charm

VI, 137.
1.

The

to

(plant) that

promote the growth of

Camadagni dug up

to

hair.

promote

the growth of his daughter's hair, Vitahavya has


brought here from the dwelling of Asita.
2. With reins they had to be measured, with outstretched arms they had to be measured out.
May
thy hairs grow as reeds, may they (cluster), black,

about thy head


3.

Make

expand

their middle,

as reeds,

may

IV,

draw out

firm their roots,

they

May

to

thy hairs grow

about thy head

(cluster), black,

Charm

4.

herb

their ends,

promote

virility.

Thee, the plant, which the Gandharva dug up


Varu^a, when his virility had decayed, thee, that

1.

for

causest strength

1
,

we

dig up.

Ushas (Aurora), Surya (the sun), and this charm


of mine
the bull Pra^apati (the lord of creatures)
shall with his lusty fire arouse him
2.

The

original,

more

drastically,

.repaharsha/nm.

changes and omissions in stanzas 3, 6, and


of the original has been similarly veiled.

By

few

7 the direct simplicity

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

2,2

This herb

3.

make thee so very full of


thou shalt, when thou art excited,

shall

lusty strength, that


exhale heat as a tiling

The

on

fire

of the plants, and the essence of the


Do thou,
him
Indra, controller of bodies, place the lusty force of men into
4.

fire

bulls shall arouse

this

person

Thou (O herb) art the first-born sap of the


5.
Moreover thou art
waters and also of the plants.
the brother of

antelope buck

Soma, and the

lusty force of the

Agni, now, O Savitar, now, O goddess


Sarasvati, now, O Brahma;/aspati, do thou stiffen
6.

Now,

the pasas as a

bow

thy pasas as a bowstring upon the


bow. Embrace thou (women) as the antelope buck
the gazelle with ever unfailing (strength)
7.

stiffen

The

strength of the horse, the mule, the goat


and the ram, moreover the strength of the bull
bestow upon him, O controller of bodies (Indra)
8.

VI, in.
1.

Release for me,

who, bound and


shall
ing),
2.

Charm

against mania.

Agni, this person here,

well-secured, loudly jabbers

he have due regard for thy share (of the


shall be free from madness

when he
Agni

shall quiet

Then
offer-

down thy mind,

if it

has been

Cunningly do I prepare a remedy, that


thou shalt be freed from madness.
the sin
3. (Whose mind) has been maddened by
of the gods, or been robbed of sense by the Rakshas,
a remedy, that he
(for him) do I cunningly prepare

disturbed

shall
4.

be free from madness.

May

the Apsaras restore thee,

may

Indra,

may

I.

Bhaga

CHARMS TO CURE

restore thee

may

all

2)7'

Charm with

$$

the gods restore thee,

that thou mayest be freed from

IV,

DISEASES.

madness

the plant a^aj-r/rigi to drive

out Rakshas, Apsaras and Gandharvas.

i. With thee,
herb, the Atharvans first slew
the Rakshas, with thee Ka^yapa slew (them), with
thee Ka/zva and Agastya (slew them).

2.

With thee do we

dharvas.

scatter the

Apsaras and Gan-

a^airzngi (odina pinnata), goad (a^a)


the Rakshas, drive them all away with thy smell
!

The

Naladi, Auksha-

3.
Apsaras, Guggulii, Pila,
gandhi, and Pramandani (by name), shall go to the
river, to the ford of the waters, as if blown away
!

Thither do ye, O Apsaras, pass away,


have been recognised

(since)

ye

4.

Where grow

the a^vattha (ficus religiosa) and

the banyan-trees, the great trees with crowns, thither

do

Apsaras, pass away, (since) ye have been


recognised
ye,

5.

Where your

cymbals and

gold and silver swings are, where

chime together, thither do ye,


Apsaras, pass away, (since) ye have been recoglutes

nised.
6.

Hither has come the mightiest of the plants

and herbs. May the a^airmgi ara/aki pierce with


her sharp horn (tikshma^rmgi)
!

Of

the crested Gandharva, the husband of the


Apsaras, who comes dancing hither, I crush the
two mushkas and cut off the j-epas.
7.

Terrible are the missiles of Indra, with a hundred points, brazen


with these he shall pierce the
8.

Gandharvas, who devour

oblations,

avaka-reed.
[42]

and devour the

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

34
9.

Terrible are the missiles of Indra, with a hun-

dred points, golden


with these he shall pierce the
Gandharvas, who devour oblations, and devour the
;

avaka-reed.
10.

All the Pi^a/'as that devour the avaka-reeds,


and spread their little light in the waters,

that burn,

do thou,
11.

One

herb, crush and


is

like

overcome
dog, one like an
!

As

ape.

a youth, with luxuriant locks, pleasant to look upon,


the Gandharva hangs about the woman.
Him do

we

drive out from here with our powerful charm.


The Apsaras, you know, are your wives; ye,
the Gandharvas, are their husbands.
Speed away,
12.

ye immortals, do not go after mortals!

II, 9.

1.

Possession by demons of disease, cured


by an amulet of ten kinds of wood.
(amulet) of ten kinds of wood, release this
the demon (rakshas) and the fit (grahi)

man from

which has seized upon (^agraha) his joints


Do
him
the
world
O
lead
forth
to
thou, moreover,
plant,
!

of the living
2. He has come, he has gone forth, he has joined
the community of the living.
And he has become
!

the father of sons, and the most happy of


3.

This person has come to

men

his senses,

he has

For he (now) has


to the cities of the living.
a hundred physicians, and also a thousand herbs.

come
4.

The gods have found

5.

(The god) that has caused

thy arrangement, (O
All
amulet); the Brahmans, moreover, the plants.
the gods have found thy arrangement upon the earth.

form the cure

he

is

(disease) shall per-

himself the best physician.

I.

CHARMS TO CURE

DISEASES.

35

Let him indeed, the holy one, prepare remedies for


thee, together with the (earthly) physician

IV, 36.

Charm

against demons (pisa.a) conceived


as the cause of disease.

May Agni

1.

Vai^vanara, the bull of unfailing

strength, burn up him that is evil-disposed, and


desires to harm us, and him that plans hostile deeds

against us

Between the two rows of teeth of Agni Vaii"vanara do I place him that plans to injure us, when
we are not planning to injure him and him that
plans to injure us, when we do plan to injure him.
3. Those who hound us in our chambers, while
shouting goes on in the night of the new moon, and
2.

who

the other flesh-devourers

of them do

plan to injure us,

all

overcome with might.


4. With might I overcome the Fisa&as, rob them
of their property
all evil-disposed (demons) do
I

slay
5.

may my

device succeed

With the gods who

vie with,

and measure their

swiftness with this sun, with those that are in the


rivers,

and

in

the mountains, do

I,

along with

my

cattle, consort.

plague the PLra/'as as the tiger the cattleowners.


As dogs who have seen a lion, these do
6.

not find a refuge.


7. My strength does not lie with PiVa/'as, nor
From
with thieves, nor with prowlers in the forest.
the village which I enter the Pisa/as vanish away.

From

the village which my fierce power has


entered the Pi-sa/^as vanish away they do not devise
8.

evil.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

36

They who

9.

irritate

me

with

as

their jabber,

(buzzing) mosquitoes the elephant, them I regard as


wretched (creatures), as small vermin upon people.
10. May Nirmi (the goddess of destruction) take
The
hold of this one, as a horse with the halter
fool who is wroth with me is not freed from (her)
!

snare.

Charm with
demon of

II, 25.

the

the plant prismparui against


disease, called ka/^va.

The goddess

Prisniparnl has prepared prosus, mishap for NirWti (the goddess of


For she is a fierce devourer of the
destruction).
1.

perity for

have I employed.
The Prmiipar/n was first begotten powerwith her do I lop off the heads of the evil

Ka;/vas
2.

ful

her, the mighty,

brood, as (the head) of a bird.

The

blood-sucking demon, and him that tries


to rob (our) health, Ka^va, the devourer of our
3.

4.

PWlmipar#l, and overcome


These Ka^vas, the effacers of life, drive into

offspring, destroy,

the mountain

go thou burning

after

them

like fire,

goddess Prz'.mipar^i
5. Drive far away these Ka?rvas, the effacers of
life
Where the dark regions are, there have
!

made

VI, 32.

these flesh-eaters tr
eo.

Charm

for driving

and

away demons (Rakshas

Pi5a./as).

Do

ye well offer within the fire this oblation


with ghee, that destroys the spook!
Do thou, O
burn
the
from
afar
Rakshas, (but) our
Agni,
against
houses thou shalt not consume
1.

CHARMS TO CURE

I.

2.

DISEASES.

Rudra has broken your

ye

also break your ribs, ye spooks

may he

whose power

Yama

necks,
!

37
Pisa/v'as

The

plant

everywhere has united you with

is

(death).

Exempt from danger, O Mitra and Varu/^a,


may we here be drive back with your flames the
Neither aider, nor
devouring demons (Atrin)
3.

support do they find

smiting one another they go

to death.

Charm

II, 4.

with an amulet derived from the

^arigitffa tree,

against diseases and demons.

1.
Unto loner life and great delights, for ever
unharmed and vigorous, do we wear the ^angida, as

an amulet destructive of the vishkandha.


2.

From

convulsions,

from tearing pain, from

vishkandha, and from torturing pain, the ^ahgitf'a


shall protect us on all sides
an amulet of a thousand
virtues

3. This gahgida. conquers the vishkandha, and


smites the Atrin (devouring demons) may this allhealing ^aiigL/a protect us from adversity!
4. By means of the invigorating ^arigu/a, bestowed
;

by the gods as an amulet, do we conquer in battle


the vishkandha and all the Rakshas.
5. May the hemp and may the gangida. protect me

The one (gahglda) is brought


against vishkandha
hither from the forest, the other (hemp) from the
!

sap of the furrow.


6. Destruction of witchcraft
destruction of hostile

powers

is
:

this amulet, also

the powerful

may

gahgida therefore extend far our lives

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

38

XIX,

Charm

34.

with an amulet derived from the

^angina-tree, against diseases and demons.


1.

Thou

art

an Angiras,

^ahgi^a, a protector
All two-footed and four-footed

O ^angiofa.

art thou,

creatures that belong to us the ^angi^a shall protect


2. The sorceries fifty-three in number, and the
!

hundred performers of sorcery, all these having lost


their force, the ^angi^a shall render bereft of
strength
3. Bereft of strength is the gotten-up clamour,
bereft of strength are the seven debilitating (charms).
Do thou, O ^angitfa, hurl away from here poverty,
!

as an archer an arrow

This ^angi^a

a destroyer of witchcraft, and


also a destroyer of hostile powers.
May then the
4.

is

powerful ^"angk/a extend far our lives


5. May the greatness of the ^ahgirta protect us
about on all sides, (the greatness) with which he has
!

overcome the vishkandha (and) the sa^zskandha,


(overcoming) the powerful (disease) with power
6. Thrice the gods begot thee that hast
grown up
the
earth.
The
Brahma/zas
of
knew
thee
upon
yore
here by the name of Angiras.
!

7.

Neither the plants of olden times, nor they of

recent times, surpass thee


a fierce
and
a
happy refuge.
^angida,
;

8.

And

when,

slayer

is

the

O ^ahgi^a of boundless virtue, thou


O fierce (plant),

didst spring up in the days of yore,


Indra at first placed strength in thee.

Fierce Indra, verily, put might into thee, O


lord of the forest! Dispersing all diseases, slay thou
9.

the Rakshas,
10.

plant!
disease

The breaking

and the tearing

disease,

CHARMS TO CURE DISEASES.

I.

39

the balasa, and the pain in the limbs, the takman


that comes every autumn, may the ^ahgi^a render

devoid of force

XIX,

Charm

35.

with an amulet derived from the

^angina-tree, against diseases and demons.

While uttering Indra's name the seers bestowed


(upon men) the ^angk/a, which the gods in the
beginning had made into a remedy, destructive of
1.

the vishkandha.
2.

the gods and the Brahma;ms


into a refuge that puts to naught the hostile

powers
3.

whom

he

treasures,

made

that g-ahgids. protect us as a treasurer his

May

The

evil-doer

eye of the hostile-minded, (and) the


have approached. Do thou, O thousand-

evil

eyed one, watchfully destroy these

refuge art

thou, O^arigi^a.

me

from heaven,
from earth, protect (me) from the atmosphere, protect me from the plants, protect me from
the past, as well as the future
may he protect us

May
protect me
4.

the ^angi^a

protect

from every direction of space


the gods, and also
5. The sorceries performed by
the
those performed by men, may
all-healing ^angi^a
render them all devoid of strength
!

*->

VI, 85.

1.

Exorcism of disease by means of an amulet


from the varaa-tree.

This divine

(varayatai).

tree,

The gods,

the vara^a, shall shut out


too, have shut out (avivaran)

the disease that hath entered into this man!


2.

By

Indra's

command,

by

Mitra's

and

by

4-0

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

Varu/za's,

by the command of

all

the gods do

we

shut out thy disease.


3. As Vrztra did
waters, thus do

hold fast these ever-flowing


shut out (varaye) disease from

thee with (the help of) Agni Vairvanara.

The

VI, 127.

/C'lpudru-tree as a panacea.

Of

the abscess, of the balasa, of flow of blood,


herb, thou shalt not leave
plant of neuralgia,
even a speck
1.

2.

Those two

boils (testicles) of thine,

upon the arm-pits I know the


the Z'ipudru-tree takes care of it.

that are fixed


for that

balasa,

remedy

3. The neuralgia that is in the limbs, that is in


the ears and in the eyes we tear them out, the

neuralgia, the abscess, and the pain in the heart.


That unknown disease do we drive away downward.

XIX,

38.

The

healing properties of bdellium.

[Neither diseases, nor yet a curse, enters this


From him that is peneperson, O arundhati !]
1.

by the sweet fragrance of the healing bdellium,


diseases flee in every direction, as antelopes and as

trated

horses run.
2. Whether, O bdellium, thou comest from the
Sindhu (Indus), or whether thou art derived from the
sea, I have seized the qualities of both, that this
person shall be exempt from harm.

VI, 91.

Barley and water as universal remedies.

This barley they did plough vigorously, with


yokes of eight and yokes of six. With it I drive off
to a far distance the ailment from thy body.
1.

I.

CHARMS TO CURE

Downward blows

2.

the sun,

downward

the wind,

the

shall thy ailment pass

DISEASES.

cow

downward burns
downward

milked

is

41

The

waters verily are healing, the waters chase


3.
away disease, the waters cure all (disease) may
they prepare a remedy for thee
:

VIII,

to all magic and medicinal plants,


used as a universal remedy.

Hymn

7.

The

1.

white

plants that are brown, and those that are


the
the red ones and the speckled ones
;

sable and the black plants,


2.

sent
sky,

May

they

all

protect this

(these)

do we invoke.

man from

the disease

by the gods, the herbs whose father


whose mother is the earth, whose root

is

the

is

the

ocean.
3.

most

The

waters and the heavenly plants are forethey have driven out from every limb thy

disease, consequent upon sin.


4. The plants that spread forth, those that are

bushy, those that have a single sheath, those that


creep along, do I address I call in thy behalf the
;

plants that have shoots, those that have stalks, those


that divide their branches, those that are derived

from

all

life to

the gods, the strong (plants) that furnish

man.

5. With the might that is yours, ye mighty ones,


with the power and strength that is yours, with that

do
I

ye,

plants, rescue this

now prepare
6.

('

man from

this disease

a remedy.

The

plants ^ivala (' quickening'), na-gha-risha


forsooth-no-harm '),^ivanti (' living'), and the arun-

dhati,

which removes

(disease),

is

full

of blossoms,

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

42

and

rich in honey,

do

exempt him from

to

call

injury.
7.

Hither shall come the intelligent (plants) that

speech, that we may bring this man


into safety out of misery
8. They that are the food of Agni (the fire), the

understand

my

offspring of the waters, that grow ever renewing


themselves, the firm (plants) that bear a thousand

names, the healing

(plants), shall

be brought hither!
is the avaka (blyxa

plants, whose womb


whose
essence are the waters,
octandra),
9.

The

their sharp horns thrust aside evil


10.

The

shall with

plants which release, exempt from Varu;za

(dropsy), are strong, and destroy poison those, too,


that remove (the disease) balasa, and ward off witchcraft shall come hither
;

The

plants that have been bought, that are


right potent, and are praised, shall protect in this
11.

village cow, horse, man, and cattle


12. Honied are the roots of these herbs, honied
!

their tops, honied their middles, honied their leaves,


honied their blossoms they share in honey, are the
;

food of immortality.
food,

and

13.

May

cattle chief of all

As many

in

they yield ghee, and

number and

kind the plants


they, furnished with
in

here are upon the earth, may


a thousand leaves, release me

misery

from

death

and

Tiger-like is the amulet (made of) herbs,


a saviour, a protector against hostile schemes may
14.

it

drive off far

Rakshas
15.

away from us

all

diseases and the

As

if

at the roar of the lion they start with

fright, as if (at the roar) of fire

they tremble before

CHARMS TO CURE

I.

DISEASES.

43

The
the (plants) that have been brought hither.
diseases of cattle and men have been driven out by
the herbs
1

The

6.

them pass

let

into navigable streams

plants release us from

Agni Vaiivanara.

Spreading over the earth, go ye, whose king


tree

is

the

The

descended from Aiigiras, that


grow upon the mountains and in the plains, shall be
for us rich in milk, auspicious, comforting to the
1

7.

heart

plants,

The herbs which

know, and those which


I see with
my sight the unknown, those which we
and
those
which we perceive to be charged
know,
18.

with (power),
19. All plants collectively shall note

we may

that

bring this

man

my

words,

into safety out of mis-

fortune,

The

20.

aivattha (ficus religiosa), and the darbha

among the plants king Soma, amrz'ta (ambrosia)


and the oblation rice and barley, the two healing,
;

immortal children of heaven

Ye

arise: it is thundering and crashing, ye


since
Par^anya (the god of rain) is favouring
plants,
children of Frt'sni (the spotted cloud), with
you,
21.

(his)

seed (water).

22.

we

The

strength of this amrz'ta (ambrosia) do

give this

man

to drink.

a remedy, that he
23.

Moreover, I prepare
a hundred years

may live
The boar knows, the ichneumon knows
!

the

Those

that the serpents and Ganhither for help.


24. The plants, derived from the Aiigiras, which
the eagles and the heavenly ragha/s (falcons) know,

healing plant.

dharvas know,

call

which the birds and the flamingos know, which

all

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

44

winged (creatures) know, which all wild animals


know, I call hither for help.
25. As many plants as the oxen and kine, as many
as the goats and the sheep feed upon, so many plants,

when

applied, shall furnish protection to thee


26. As many (plants), as the human physicians

know

to contain a remedy, so

every healing quality, do


27.

Those

that

have

many, endowed with

apply to thee
flowers, those that have

blossoms, those that bear fruit, and those that are


without fruit, as if from the same mother they shall

suck sap, to exempt this man from injury


28. I have saved thee from a depth of five
fathoms, and, too, from a depth of ten fathoms
!

moreover, from the

foot-fetter of

Yama, and from

every sin against the gods.


Plants as a panacea.

VI, 96.
1.

king

The many

plants of hundredfold aspect,

whose

Soma, which have been begotten by Brz-

is

from calamity!
2. May they free us from (the calamity) consequent upon curses, and also from the (toils) of

haspati, shall free us

Varima moreover, from the


and every sin against the gods

foot-fetter of

Yama,

What laws we have infringed upon, with the


the
mind, and speech, either while awake, or
eye,
asleep
may Soma by his (divine) nature clear these
3.

(sins)

away from us
II, 32.

Charm

to secure perfect health.

1.
From thy eyes, thy nostrils, ears, and chin
from thy
the disease which is seated in thy head
brain and tongue I do tear it out.

I.

CHARMS TO CURE DISEASES.

45

From

2.

thy neck, nape of the neck, ribs, and


the disease which is seated in thy fore-arm

spine

from thy shoulders and arms


3.

From

4.

From

do tear

it

out.

thy heart, thy lungs, viscera, and sides


from thy kidneys, spleen, and liver we do tear out
the disease.

men

thy

from thy

entrails,

canals, rectum,

and navel

belly, guts,

and abdodo tear out

the disease.
5.

From

thy thighs, knees, heels, and the tips of


from thy hips I do tear out the disease

thy feet
seated in thy buttocks, from thy bottom the disease
seated in thy buttocks.

From

thy bones, marrow, sinews and arteries


from thy hands, fingers, and nails I do tear out the
6.

disease.
7.

The

disease

that

in

is

thy every limb, thy


is seated in

that which

every hair, thy every joint


thy skin, with Ka^yapa's charm, that tears out, to
;

either side

IX,

8.

we do

Charm

tear

it

out.

to procure

immunity from

all

diseases.
t. Headache and
suffering in the head, pain in
the ears and flow of blood, every disease of the
head, do we charm forth from thee.

From

thy ears, from thy kankushas the earpain, and the neuralgia
every disease of the head
2.

do we charm forth from

thee.

(With the charm) through whose agency disease


every
disease of the head do we charm forth from thee.
3.

hastens forth from the ears and the mouth

4.

(The disease) that renders a man deaf and

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

46

every disease of the head do

blind

from

we charm

forth

thee.

Pain in the limbs,

5.

fever

in

the

limbs,

the

every disease of
neuralgia that affects every limb
the head do we charm forth from thee.

whose frightful aspect makes


man tremble, the takman (fever) that comes every
autumn, do we charm forth from thee.
7. The disease that creeps along the thighs, and
then enters the canals, out of thy inner parts do we
charm forth.
6.

(The

from the heart, from love, or from disgust,


arises, from thy heart and from thy limbs the
If

8.
it

disease)

balasa do

we charm

forth.

Jaundice from thy limbs, diarrhoea from within


thy bowels, the core of disease from thy inner soul
9.

do we charm

forth.

To

ashes (asa) the balasa shall turn; what is


The poison of all
diseased shall turn to urine
10.

diseases

have charmed forth from

thee.

Outside the opening (of the bladder) it shall


off; the rumbling shall pass from thy belly!

11.

run

The

poison of

from

thee.

2.

From

all

(The

have charmed forth

thy belly, lungs, navel, and heart

poison of all diseases


13.

diseases

pains)

the

have charmed forth from thee.


split the crown (of the

that

head), pierce the head, without doing injury, without causing disease, they shall run off outside the

opening
14.

(of the bladder)

They

that pierce the heart, creep along the

without doing injury, without causing disease,


they shall run off outside the opening (of the
ribs,

bladder)

CHARMS TO CURE

I.

47

that pierce the sides, bore along the ribs,

They

15.

DISEASES.

without doing injury, without causing disease, they


shall run off outside the opening (of the bladder)
!

16.

that pierce

They

burrow

crosswise,

abdomen, without doing

without

injury,

disease, they shall run off outside the

the bladder)
1

They

7.

in

thy

causing

opening (of

that creep along the rectum, twist the

bowels, without doing injury, without causing disease,


they shall run off outside the opening (of the bladder)
18. They that suck the marrow, and split the
!

without doing injury, without causing disease, they shall run off outside the opening (of the

joints,

bladder)
19.

The

diseases

and the

thy limbs, the poison of


forth

all

that paralyse

injuries

diseases

have charmed

from thee.

Of

neuralgia, of abscesses, of inflation, or of


inflammation of the eyes, the poison of all diseases
I have driven forth from thee.
20.

21. From thy feet, knees, thighs, and bottom;


from thy spine, and thy neck the piercing pains,
from thy head the ache I have removed.
22. Firm are the bones of thy skull, and the beat
At thy rising, O sun, thou didst
of thy heart.

remove the pains of the head, quiet the pangs

in

the limbs.

II, 29.

Charm

for obtaining long life and prosperity by transmission of disease.

In the essence of earthly


strength of body (may he live)
t.

Brz'haspati bestow upon him

bliss,
!

life's

May

ye gods, in

Agni, Siirya,

vigour

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

48

2.
Give life to him,
cTatavedas, bestow in
addition progeny upon him,
Tvash/ar procure,
Savitar, increase of wealth for him may this one,

who belongs

hundred autumns
our
3. May
prayer bestow upon us vigour, and
of
sound
possession
progeny ability and property
do ye two, (O heaven and earth), bestow upon us
to thee, live a

conquering lands with might,


subjecting the others, his enemies

May

he,

(live),

Indra,

4. Given by Indra, instructed by Varu;za, sent by


the Maruts, strong, he has come to us may he, in
the lap of ye two, heaven and earth, not suffer from
;

hunger and not from

thirst

5. Strength may ye two, that are rich in strength,


bestow upon him milk may ye two, that are rich
in milk, bestow upon him
Strength heaven and
;

earth did bestow upon him


the Maruts, and the waters.
6.

With the gracious


mayest

heart,

rejoice

all

strength

do

the gods,

delight thy
thou, free from disease, full of force,

Clothed

in the

(waters)

same garment do ye two

drink this stirred drink, taking on as a magic form


the shape of the two Aivins
!

7.

Indra, having

vigour, and

this

force, live (a
:

first

created this
:

that

By means

same

of that do thou, full of


autumns
may it not flow out
hundred)
physicians have prepared it for thee

belongs to thee.
of thee

been wounded,

ever fresh divine food

II.

PRAYERS FOR LONG LIFE AND HEALTH


(AYUSHYANI).
Prayer for health and long

Ill, ii.
i.

thee

release

unto

life

life.

by means of (my)
and from consump-

from unknown decline,


Grahi (seizure) has caught hold (^agraha)
person here, may Indra and Agni free him

oblation,

If

tion.

of this

from that

has faded, even if he has passed


he has been brought to the very vicinity of
snatch him from the lap of Nirmi (the

If his life

2.

if

away,
death,

I have freed him unto a


goddess of destruction)
life of a hundred autumns.
3. I have snatched him (from death) by means of
an oblation which has a thousand eyes, hundredfold
strength, and ensures a hundredfold life, in order
that Indra may conduct him
through the years across
:

to the other side of every misfortune.


4. Live thou, thriving a hundred autumns, a hundred winters, and a hundred springs! May Indra,
Agni, Savitar, Br/haspati (grant) thee a hundred
years! I have snatched him (from death) with an

oblation that secures a


5.

two

Enter

bulls a stable

of which,
6.

ye,

it is

of a hundred years.

in-breathing and out-breathing, as


Away shall go the other deaths,

said, there are a

Remain ye
[42]

life

here,

O
E

hundred more
in-breathing and
!

out-

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

5<D

breathing, do not go away from here do ye carry


anew to old age his body and his limbs
;

7.

To

old age

thee

make thee

over, into old

age

may a happy old age guide thee


urge
shall
Away
go the other deaths, of which, it is said,
there are a hundred more
I

8.

(life unto) old age has been deposited,


That death which has
tied upon a bull.

thee

Upon

as a rope is
fettered thee at thy birth with a firm rope, Br/haspati with the hands of the truth did strip off from
thee.
II, 28.

Prayer for long

life

pronounced over

a boy.
1.

For thee

(boy) shall

alone,

grow up

(death from) old age, this


the other hundred kinds of

death shall not harm him

Like a provident mother


in her lap Mitra shall befriend him, shall save him
from misfortune
!

2.

Mitra

May

or Varu^a,

the

illustrious,

operating, grant him death from old age

Agni, the
all

priest,

who knows

co-

Then

the ways, promulgates

the races of the gods.

3. Thou, (O Agni), rulest over all the animals of


the earth, those which have been born, and those
which are to be born may not in-breathing leave
:

this one,

nor yet out-breathing,

nor foes slay him


4.

father

May

may

neither friends

Dyaus

(sky)

and mother Pr/thivi


death from old

thee

(earth), co-operating, grant


age, that thou mayest live in the lap of Aditi a
hundred winters, guarded by in-breathing and out-

breath in q5.

Lead

this dear child to life

and vigour,

Agni,

II.

PRAYERS FOR LONG LIFE AND HEALTH.

Varima, and king Mitra


protection, O Aditi, and
attain to old

aee

all

mother afford him


ye gods, that he may
a

Prayer for health and long

III, 31.
1.

As

The gods

are

life.

from decrepitude; thou,

free

removed from the demon of hostility,


Agni,
free thee from all evil and disease, (and) unite
art

thee with
2.

life.

(Vayu), the purifying (wind), shall free thee

from misfortune, .5akra (Indra) from evil sorcery!


I free thee from all evil and
disease, (and) unite
thee with
3.

the

life.

The tame
wild

(village) animals are separate

(forest

apart from

animals)

thirst.

free

the

thee

from

water has flowed

from

all

evil

and

disease, (and) unite thee with life.


4. Heaven and earth here go apart; the paths
go in every direction. I free thee from all evil and

disease, (and) unite thee with


'

Tvash/ar

life.

preparing a wedding for his


daughter,' thus (saying) does this whole world pass
I free thee from all evil and
through.
disease, (and)
unite thee with life.
5.

6.

with

Agni
(life's)

unites

is

(life's)

breath.

breaths, the
free thee

disease, (and) unite thee with

moon

from

all

is

united

evil

and

life.

7. By means of (life's) breath the gods aroused


the everywhere mighty sun.
I free thee from all
evil and disease, (and) unite thee with life.

Live thou by the (life's) breath of them that


have life, and that create life do not die
I
free
thee from all evil and disease, (and) unite thee with
8.

life.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

52

Breathe thou with the

9.

that breathe

and

do not die

(life's)

disease, (and) unite thee with

Do

breath of those

free thee

from

all evil

life.

(rise) up with life, unite thyself with


I free
life, (rise) up with the sap of the plants
thee from all evil and disease, (and) unite thee with

10.

thou

life.
1

1.

From

immortal.

the rain of Par^anya we have risen up,


free thee from all evil and disease,

(and) unite thee with

VII, 53.
1.

When,

life.

Prayer for long

life.

Br/haspati, thou didst liberate (us)

from existence in yonder world of Yama, (and)


from hostile schemes, then did the Asvins, the
physicians of the gods, with might sweep death
from us, O Agni
2. O
in-breathing and out-breathing, go along
with the body, do not leave it
may they be thy
allies here
Live and thrive a hundred autumns
!

Agni

be thy most excellent shepherd and

shall

overseer
3.

Thy

vital force that

has been dissipated

afar,

thy in-breathing and thy out-breathing, shall come


back again
Agni has snatched them from the lap
of Nirmi (the goddess of destruction), and I again
introduce them into thy person.
4. Let not his in-breathing desert him, nor his
I commit him
out-breathing quit him and depart
to the Seven /fr'shis
may they convey him in
!

health to old age


5. Enter,
in-breathing and out-breathing, like
this person shall here
two bulls into a stable
flourish, an unmolested repository for old age
!

PRAYERS FOR LONG LIFE AND HEALTH.

II.

Life's breath

6.

we do

53

drive into thee, disease

do drive away from


May
endow us with life from every source
darkness of death
7. Ascending from the

this excellent

thee.

we

Agni

firmament,

highest

among
VIII,

to

Siirya

(the

the

sun),

gods, we have reached the highest

to the

god

light.

Prayer for exemption from the dangers

1.

of death.
1.

To

the

'

Ender,' to Death be reverence

May

thy in-breathing and thy out-breathing remain here


United here with (life's) spirit this man shall be,
sharing in the sun, in the world of immortality
!

(amrz'ta)

Bhaga has raised him up, Soma with his rays


(has raised) him up, the Maruts, the gods, (have
raised) him up, Indra and Agni (have raised) him
2.

up unto well-being.

Here

(shall be) thy (life's) spirit, here thy inWe rescue


here
breathing,
thy life, here thy mind
thee from the toils of Nirrz'ti (destruction) by means
3.

of our divine utterance.

man Casting off the foot4. Rise up hence,


Be not cut off
shackles of death, do not sink down
from this world, from the sight of Agni and the sun
!

5.

The

wind, Matariivan, shall

waters shall shower

blow

for thee, the

amma

(ambrosia) upon thee,


Death
shine kindly for thy body
do not waste away
shall pity thee
man
6. Thou shalt ascend and not descend,
the sun shall

Life

and alertness do

prepare for thee.

Mount,

imperishable, pleasant car; then


old age thou shalt hold converse with thy family
forsooth, this

in
!

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

54

Thy mind

7.

shall not

go

thither, shall not dis-

Do not become heedless of the living, do


appear
All the gods shall preserve
not follow the Fathers
!

thee here

Do

not long after the departed, who conduct


Ascend from the darkness, come to the
(men) afar
lay hold of thy hands.
light
8.

We

9.

The two dogs

of

Yama, the black and

the

brindled one, that guard the road (to heaven), that


have been despatched, shall not (go after) thee
Come hither, do not long to be away; do not tarry
here with thy mind turned to a distance
!

Do

not follow this path: it is terrible I speak


by which thou hast not hitherto gone.
Darkness is this, O man, do not enter it
Danger
10.

of that

is

beyond, security here for thee.

n. May the

are within the waters


which
men kindle guard
guard thee, may (the fire)
thee, may Catavedas Vaisvanara (the fire common
fires

that

Let not the heavenly (fire)


together with the lightning burn thee
12. Let not the flesh-devouring (fire) menace
to all

men) guard thee

move

funeral pyre!
Heaven
the
earth
shall
guard thee,
guard thee, the sun
and moon shall guard thee, the atmosphere shall

thee:

afar from the

shall

guard thee against the divine missile


13. May the alert and the watchful divinities
guard thee, may he that sleeps not and nods not
guard thee, may he that protects and is vigilant
!

guard thee
14.

thee.

They

shall

guard thee, they shall protect


Reverence be to them. Hail be to them
!

15. Into converse with the living Vayu, Indra,


breath
Dhatar, and saving Savitar shall put thee
;

PRAYERS FOR LONG LIFE AND HEALTH.

II.

55

and strength shall not leave thee


Thy (life's)
spirit do we call back to tlree.
16. Convulsions that draw the jaws
together,
darkness, shall not come upon thee, nor (the demon)
that tears out the tongue (?)
How shalt thou then
waste away ? The Adityas and Vasus, Indra and
!

Agni
1

7.

shall raise thee

The

heavens,

The

rescued thee.

up unto well-being
the

Pra^apati, have

earth,

plants with

Soma

their king

have delivered thee from death.


iS. Let this man remain right here, ye gods, let
him not depart hence to yonder world
We rescue
him from death with (a charm) of thousandfold
!

strength.
19.

have delivered

thee

from

death.

The

(powers) that furnish strength shall breathe upon


thee.
The (mourning women) with dishevelled

they that wail


over thee
hair,

lugubriously,

shall

not wail

have snatched thee (from death),

have
obtained thee
thou hast returned with renewed
O
thou, that art (now) sound of limb, for
youth.
thee sound sight, and sound life have I obtained.
21. It has shone upon thee,
light has arisen,
darkness has departed from thee. We remove from
thee death, destruction, and disease.
20.

VIII,

1.

2.

Take

Prayer for exemption from the dangers


of death.
hold

of this (charm)

that

subjects to

unto old age not be


immortality (life), may thy
cut off! I bring to thee anew breath and life: go
life

not to mist and darkness, do not waste

away

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

56
2.

Come

hither to the light of the living; I rescue


life of a hundred autumns
Loosing the

thee unto a

bands of death and imprecation, I bestow upon thee


long life extended very far.
3. From the wind thy breath I have obtained,
from the sun thine eye thy soul I hold fast in thee
be together with thy limbs, speak articulating with

thy tongue
4.

creatures

born

the breath of two-footed and four-footed

blow upon

on

(as

ence,
5.

With

when

fire

on Agni when he is
I have
kindled).
paid rever-

thee, as

death, to thine eye, reverence to thy breath.


shall live and shall not die
we

This (man)

rouse this

man

(to life)

make

death, do not slay the man

('

him a remedy

for

6. The plant ^ivala (' quickening


na-gha-risha
'),
forsooth-no-harm '), and ^ivanti ('living'), a victo-

mighty saviour-plant do I invoke, that he may


be exempt from injury.
7. Befriend him, do not seize him, let him go,
(O death) though he be thy very own, let him
abide here with unimpaired strength
O Bhava and
rious,

.Sarva, take pity, grant protection

misfortune drive

away, and life bestow


8. Befriend him, death, and pity him
may he from
here arise
with
sound limbs, hearing
Unharmed,
!

through old age carrying a hundred


him get enjoyment by himself (unaided)

perfectly,
let

The

missile of the gods shall pass thee by


thee
across the mist (of death) from death
pass
have rescued thee.
Removing far the flesh9.

years,

devouring Agni, a barrier do


that thou mayest live,
10.

From

set

around

thee,

thy misty road that cannot be withstood,

PRAYERS FOR LONG LIFE AND HEALTH.

II.

57

we guard this
and
make
our
charm
a
protection for him.
(man),
11. In-breathing and out-breathing do I prepare
for thee, death in old age, long life, and prosperity.
All the messengers of Yama, that roam about, dispatched by Vivasvant's son, do I drive away.
death, from this path (of thine)

Arati

12.

Nirrz'ti

(grudge),

Grahi

(destruction),

(seizure), and the flesh-devouring Pi^a/^as (do we


drive) away to a distance, and hurl all wicked
Rakshas away into darkness as it were.

breath from the immortal,


That thou shalt
life-possessing Agni CVatavedas.
immortal
in (Agni's) comshalt
be
not take harm,
I

13.

crave thy

life's

pany, that do I procure for thee, and that shall be


thee

fulfilled for

May heaven and

earth, the bestowers of hapand


harmless to thee may
be
piness,
auspicious
the sun shine, and the wind blow comfort to thy
14.

heart

the heavenly waters, rich in milk, flow

may

upon thee kindly!


plants be auspicious to thee
raised thee from the lower to the upper earth
15.

may

May the

I
:

have
there

both the Adityas, the sun and the moon, pro-

tect thee.
16.

girdle

Whatever garment

whatever

thou makest for

body do we
it

for clothing, or

render

it

thyself, agreeable to thy


not rough to thy touch shall

be!

When

thou, the barber, shearest with thy sharp


well-whetted razor our hair and beard, do not, while
1

7.

cleansing our face, rob us of our


18.

life

Rice and barley shall be auspicious to thee,

causing no balasa, inflicting no injury


drive

away

disease, they

They two

two release from calamity.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

58
19.

Whatever thou

eatest or drinkest, the grain

of the plough-land or milk, whatever is or is not to


be eaten, all that food do I render for thee free

from poison.
20.

To day and

to night both do we commit thee


that seek to devour, do ye preserve

from the demons


this

me

(man) for

hundred years, ten thousand years, two,


four
three,
ages (yuga) do we allot to thee Indra
and Agni, and all the gods without anger shall
21.

favour thee
22.

To autumn

and summer,
which grow the plants

thee, to winter, spring

do we commit the rains


shall be pleasant to thee
;

in

23.

Death

rules over bipeds, death rules over


From that death, the lord of cattle,

quadrupeds.
do I rescue thee

do not fear

thou
Free from harm thou shalt not die
do
not
do not fear
Verily, they
die there, they do not go to the nethermost dark24.

ness

not die

shalt

25. Verily,

every creature lives there, the cow,

the horse, and man, where this charm


as the (protecting) barrier for life.

is

performed,

preserve thee from sorcery, from thy


equals and thy kin
Undying be, immortal, exceedvital
thy spirits shall not abandon thy body
ingly
26.

May

it

27.

From

the one and a hundred deaths, from

the dangers that are surmountable, from that Agni


Vai-svanara (the funeral pyre ?) may the gods deliver
thee

Thou, the remedy called putudru, art the body


of Agni, the deliverer, slayer of Rakshas, slayer of
rivals, moreover thou chasest away disease.
28.

PRAYERS FOR LONG LIFE AND HEALTH.

II.

59

Prayer for exemption from disease and

V, 30.

death.

From

1.
I

near thy vicinity, from near thy distance


do not
remain here, do not follow

call)
(do
follow the Fathers of yore
life's breath.
:

Firmly do

fasten thy

Whatever sorcery any kinsman or stranger has


practised against thee, both release and deliverance
2.

with
3.

If

man

with
4.

voice do

my

declare for thee.

woman

thou hast deceived or cursed a

or

thy folly, both release and deliverance


voice do I declare for thee.

in

my

If thou liest

(ill)

in

consequence of a sin com-

mitted by thy mother or thy father, both release


and deliverance with my voice do I declare for
thee.

mother
5. Fight shy of the medicine which thy
and thy father, thy sister and thy brother let out
against thee

shall

cause thee to live unto old

age!

6. Remain here,
man, with thy entire soul do
not follow the two messengers of Yama
come to
the abodes of the living
;

7.

Return when

called,

knowing the outlet of the

path (death), the ascent, the advance, the road of

every living
8.

Fear

man

not,

thou shalt not die

shall

cause

I have charmed away


thee to live unto old age
from thy limbs the disease that wastes the limbs.
!

The

disease that racks and wastes thy limbs,


and the sickness in thy heart, has flown as an eagle
9.

to a far distance,

overcome by

my

charm.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

60

The two sages Alert and Watchful, the sleepand the vigilant, these two guardians of thy
life's breath, are awake both day and night.
1 1.
Agni here is to be revered the sun shall rise
here for thee rise thou from deep death, yea from
10.

less

black darkness

12. Reverence be to Yama, reverence to death;


reverence to the Fathers and to those that lead (to

them) [death's messengers ?] That Agni who knows


way to save do I engage for this man, that he
be exempt from harm
13. His breath shall come, his soul shall come,
his sight shall come, and, too, his strength
His
!

the

body
upon

shall

collect itself:

his feet

then shall he stand firm

14. Unite him, Agni, with breath and sight, proThou


vide him with a body and with strength
!

hast a knowledge of immortality


let him not now
depart, let him not now become a dweller in a house
:

of clay
15.

Thy

in-breathing

shall

not cease, thy out(the sun), the

Surya
breathing shall not vanish
supreme lord, shall raise thee from
;

rays

death with his

This tongue (of mine), bound (in the mouth,


mobile,
yet)
speaks within with it I have charmed
away disease, and the hundred torments of the
16.

takman

(fever).

This world is most dear to the gods, unconFor whatever death thou wast destined
quered.
when thou wast born, O man, that (death) and we
call after thee
do not die before old age
1

7.

IV,

II.

PRAYERS FOR LONG LIFE AND HEALTH.

9.

Salve (a^ana) as a protector of

life

61

and

limb.
1.

Come

Thou

hither!

art the living, protecting

eye-ointment of the mountain, given by


as a safeguard, unto life.
2.

Thou

3.

Thou

all

the gods

a protection for men, a protection


for cattle, thou didst stand for the protection of
horses and steeds.
art

art,

both a protection that

salve,

crushes the sorcerers,

and thou hast knowledge of

Moreover, thou art food for


immortality (amrz'ta).
the living, and thou art, too, a remedy against
jaundice.
4.

From him over whose every

joint thou passest,

salve,

intercepter, drive away


5. Him that bears thee,

limb and every

thou dost, as a mighty

disease.

salve, neither curse,

nor sorcery, nor burning pain does reach


the vishkandha come upon him.

From

nor does

scheme, from troubled dream, from


from the evil eye
evil deed, and also from foulness
this
from
of the enemy,
protect us, O salve
6.

evil

7.

Knowing

this,

avoid falsehood.

salve,

May

speak the truth,

shall

obtain horses and cattle,

and thy person, O serving-man


the takman
8. Three are servants of the salve
The highest
(fever), the balasa, and the serpent.
of the mountains, Trikakud (' Three-peaks ') by
!

name,
9.

is thy father.
Since the salve of Trikakud

Himavant,
the witches.

it

shall

demolish

all

is

born upon the

the wizards and

all

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

62
10.

Whether thou
or

art

art derived

said

from the (mountain)

come from the

to

Trikakud,
(river)
Yamuna, both these names of thine are auspicious

with these,

salve, protect us

The

IV, 10.

pearl

and

bestowing long

shell as

its

life

an amulet

and prosperity.

Born of the wind, the atmosphere, the lightning, and the light, may this pearl shell, born of
gold, protect us from straits
2. With the shell which was born in the sea, at
the head of bright substances, we slay the Rakshas
and conquer the Atrins (devouring demons).
shell (we conquer) disease and
3. With the
i.

poverty

with the

shell,

too, the

our universal remedy


tect us from straits
shell

is

The

Sadanvas.

the pearl shall pro-

Born in the heavens, born


on from the river (Sindhu), this
4.

the sea, brought


shell, born of gold,

in

our life-prolonging amulet.


5. The amulet, born from the sea, a sun, born
from Wz'tra (the cloud), shall on all sides protect
us from the missiles of the gods and the Asuras
is

Thou

one of the golden substances, thou


Thou art sightly
art born from Soma (the moon).
on the chariot, thou art brilliant on the quiver.
[May it prolong our lives !]
6.

art

The bone

of the gods turned into pearl that,


animated, dwells in the waters. That do I fasten
upon thee unto life, lustre, strength, longevity, unto
7.

life

lasting a

hundred autumns.

of pearl protect thee

May the

(amulet)

PRAYERS FOR LONG LIFE AND HEALTH.

II.

XIX,
1.

The

26.

Gold as an amulet

gold which

is

born from

fire,

they bestowed upon the mortals.


this deserves it
of old age dies he
;

for long

63

life.

the immortal,

He who knows
who wears

it.

2. The gold, (endowed by) the sun with beautiful


colour, which the men of yore, rich in descendants,

gleaming envelop thee


Lone-lived becomes he who wears it

did desire,

may

it

in lustre

3. (May
envelop) thee unto (long) life, unto
lustre, unto force, and unto strength, that thou shalt
it

brilliancy of the

by the
people

gold shine forth

among

(The gold) which king Varu;/a knows, which


god Brz'haspati knows, which Indra, the slayer of
4.

Wz'tra, knows,

of

life,

may

that

may

that

become

become

for thee a source

for thee a source of lustre

III.

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, SORCERERS,


AND ENEMIES (ABHIAARIKANI AND
Ktf/TYAPRATIHARAMNI).
I,

1.

Against sorcerers and demons.

7.

The

sorcerer (yatudhana) that vaunts himself,

and the Kimidin do thou, O Agni, convey hither


For thou, O god, when lauded, becomest the destroyer of the demon.
!

Partake of the ghee, of the sesame-oil,

2.

Agni

Catavedas, that standest on high, conquerest by


Make the sorcerers howl
thyself!
!

3.

The

sorcerers and the devouring (atrin) Kimi-

howl

din shall

Do

and

ye, moreover,
Agni
Indra, receive graciously this our oblation!
4.

be the
his (strong) arms
shall

Agni

with

Every

seize

drive

shall

them, Indra

them away

wizard, as soon as he comes, shall proclaim

am

'

himself, saying,
5.

to

first

We

'

he

would see thy might,

close to us the wizards,

C7atavedas

thou that beholdest

dis-

men

driven forth by thy

May

fire, disclosing
they all,
themselves, come to this spot
6. Seize hold,
C7atavedas for our good thou
wast born
Become our messenger, O Agni, and
!

make
7.

the sorcerers howl

Do

bound

in

thou,
Agni, drag hither the sorcerers,
shackles then Indra with his thunderbolt

shall cut off their

heads

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

III.

I, 8.

May

1.

65

Against sorcerers and demons.

this oblation carry hither the sorcerers, as

a river (carries) foam

who has performed

The man

woman

or the

this (sorcery), that

person shall

here proclaim himself!

This vaunting (sorcerer) has come hither


O Brzhaspati, put him
receive him with alacrity
into subjection
O Agni and Soma, pierce him
through
3. Slay the offspring of the sorcerer, O somaMake drop
drinking (Indra), and subject (him)
out the farther and the nearer eye of the braggart
2.

(demon)
4. Wherever, O Agni ^atavedas, thou perceivest
the brood of these hidden devourers (atrin), do thou,
!

mightily strengthened by our charm, slay them slay


their (brood),
Agni, piercing them a hundredfold
:

I,

Charm

16.

with lead, against

demons and

sorcerers.

Against the devouring" demons who, in the


night of the full-moon, have arisen in throngs, may
1.

Agni, the strong, the slayer of the sorcerers, give us


co ura ore

To

2.

the lead

Agni gives
ingly
3.

it

help.

Varuwa gives blessing, to the lead


Indra gave me the lead unfail:

dispels sorcery.

This

(lead)

overcomes the vishkandha,

smites the devouring demons (atrin)


have overwhelmed all the brood of the
4.

If
[42]

thou slayest our cow,


F

if

this

with this

PLva/C'as.

our horse or our

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

66

domestic, we pierce thee with the lead, so that thou


shalt not slay our heroes.

VI,

The

2.

soma-oblation directed against

demons

(rakshas).

Press the soma, ye priests, and rinse it (for


pressing), in behalf of Indra who shall

i.

renewed

to the

listen

song of the worshipper, and

my

to

call!

Do

2.

of

thou,

soma enter

doughty

(Indra),

whom

the drops

as birds a tree, beat off the hostile

brood of the Rakshas

Press ye the soma for Indra, the soma-drinker,


wields the thunderbolt
youthful victor and

3.

who

ruler

is

he,

Charm

II, 14.

praised by many men.


against a variety of female demons,

conceived as hostile to men,

cattle,

and home.

the bold, the greedy demon (? dhisha^a), and (the female demon) with long-drawn
howl, the bloodthirsty all the daughters of /uwrfa,
1.

Nissala,

the Sadanvas do

we

destroy.
2.
drive you out of the stable, out of the axle
we
(of the wagon), and the body of the wagon

We

chase you,
house.

ye daughters of Magundi, from the

In yonder house below, there the grudging


demons (arayi) shall exist there ruin shall prevail,
3.

and

all

the witches

(Rudra), the lord of beings, and Indra,


drive forth from here the Sadanvas those that are
4.

May

seated on the foundation of the house Indra shall

overcome with

his thunderbolt

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

III.

Whether ye belong to

6J

demons) of inherited
disease, whether ye have been dispatched by men,
or whether ye have originated from the Dasyus
(demon-like aborigines), vanish from here, O ye
Sadanvas
5.

(the

About

6.

their

dwelling-places

did

swiftly

on a race-course. I have won all


course,
contests with you
vanish from here, O ye Sadanvas
as

if

Against vishkandha and kabava

Ill, 9.

(hostile

demons).

Of kanapha and visapha heaven

1.

is

the father

and earth the mother.


As, ye gods, ye have
on
(the trouble), thus do ye again rebrought

move

it

Without fastening they (the protecting plants?)


held fast, thus it has been arranged by Manu.
The
vishkandha do I render impotent, like one who
2.

cattle.

gelds
3.

talisman tied to a reddish thread the active

(seers) then

do fasten on

may the

impotent the eager, fiery kabava


4.

And

5.

fastenings render

since,
ye eager (demons), ye walk like
the
of
the Asuras, the fastening (of the
wile
gods by
amulet) is destructive to the kabava, as the ape to
the dog.

revile thee,

(and) shall

the kabava,

work harm

for thee.

unto misfortune,
Accompanied with

curses ye shall go out like swift chariots


6.
hundred and one vishkandha are spread out
the
earth
for these at the beginning they
along
!

brought out thee,


shkandha.

the

amulet,
f 2

that

destroys

vi-

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

68

IV, 20.

Charm

with a certain plant (sadawpushpa)


which exposes demons and enemies.

He

1.

sees here, he sees yonder, he sees in the


the sky, the atmosphere as well

distance, he sees

as the earth, all that,


goddess, he sees.
2. The three heavens, the three earths, and these
six

directions

through thee,

Thou

3.

eagle

all
severally
divine plant

woman a palanquin.
4. The thousand-eyed god
into

my

right

hand

may

see

eyeball of the divine


the earth as a weary

verily the
didst ascend

art

thou

creatures

shall

with that do

put this plant


see every one,

the .Sudra as well as the Arya.


5. Reveal (all) forms, do not hide thy

own

self;

moreover, do thou, O thousand-eyed (plant), look


the Kimidins in the face
the
6. Reveal to me the wizards, and reveal
for this purpose do
witches, reveal all the Piia/'as
!

take hold of thee,

Thou

plant

eye of Kaiyapa, and the eye of


Like the sun, moving in the
the four-eyed bitch.
bright day, make thou the Pi^a^a evident to me!
7.

art the

have dragged out from his retreat the sorand


the Kimidin.
cerer
Through this (charm) do I
8.

see every one, the .Sudra as well as the Arya.


9. Him that flies in the air, hirn that moves across
the sky, him that regards the earth as his resort,
that Pba^a do thou reveal (to me)
!

III.

IV, 17.

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

Charm

with the apamarga-plant, against


sorcery, demons, and enemies.

We

take hold,
mistress of remedies.
1.

69

O
I

victorious one, of thee, the


have made thee a thing of

thousandfold strength for every one, O plant


2. Her, the unfailingly victorious one, that wards
off curses, that is powerful and defensive
(her and)
!

all the plants have I assembled, intending that she


shall save us from this (trouble)
!

has cursed us with a curse, who


3.
has arranged dire misfortune (for us), who has taken
hold of our children, to rob them of their strengthmay she eat (her own) offspring

The woman who

4.
spell which they have put into the
unburned vessel, that which they have put into the
blue and red thread, that which they have put into

The magic

with these slay thou those that have


the
spell
prepared
5. Evil dreams, troubled life, Rakshas, gruesome-

raw

flesh,

and grudging demons (arayi), all the evilnamed, evil-speaking (powers), these do we drive
out from us.
6. Death from hunger, and death from thirst,
poverty in cattle, and failure of offspring, all that,
O apamarga, do we wipe out (apa mr/^mahe) with

ness,

thee.
7.

Death from

thirst,

moreover, ill-luck at dice,


we wipe out with thee.
8.

with
live

and death from hunger,


all that, O apamarga, do

The apamarga is sole ruler over all plants,


do we wipe mishap from thee do thou then

it

exempt from disease

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

JO

IV,

8.

Charm

with the apamarga-plant, against

sorcerers and demons.


i.

is

Night

like

unto the sun, the (starry) night

The

similar to day.

truth do

2.

He,

carries

it

ye gods, who prepares a spell, and


to the house of one that knows not (of it),
spell, returning, shall fasten itself like

a suckling calf upon


3.

its

mother

and
consumed by

person that prepares evil at home,

desires with
fire,

upon him the

The

for help

engage

the enchantments shall be devoid of force

is

it

to

harm

and many stones

another, she
fall

is

upon her with

loud

crash.

Bestow curses, O thou (apamarga), that hast


a thousand homes, upon the (demons) vii'ikha
crestless '), and vigriva (' crooked-neck ')
Turn
('
back the spell upon him that has performed it, as
a beloved maid (is brought) to her lover
5. With this plant I have put to naught all spells,
those that they have put into thy field, thy cattle,
and into thy domestics.
6. He that has undertaken them has not been
able to accomplish them he broke his foot, his toe.
4.

He
an

performed a lucky act for

us,

but for himself

injury.
7.

The

marsh/u)
wipe out
(arayi)

shall
wipe out (apa
and
curses
ills,
yea, it shall
witches, and all grudging demons

apamarga-plant
inherited
all

Having wiped out


with thee,
demons,
ing
8.

that (evil) out.

all

sorcerers,

and

all

grudg-

apamarga, we wipe

all

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

III.

Mystic power of the apamarga-plant,

IV, 19.

demons and

against
1.

On

sorcerers.

the one hand thou deprivest of kin, on the

Do thou, moreprocurest kinfolk.


over, cut the offspring of him that practises spells,
as a reed that springs up in the rain
other thou

now

2.

By

Brahma^a thou hast been

blest,

by

Thou goest
Ka;*va, the descendant of Nr/shad.
where thou hast arrived,
like a strong army

plant, there there


3.

Thou

is

no

fear.

goest at the head of the plants, spread-

Thou art on the one


ing lustre, as if with a light.
hand the protector of the weak, on the other the
slayer of the Rakshas.
the gods drove
4. When of yore, in the beginning,
out the Asuras with thee, then,
plant, thou wast

begotten as apamarga
5.

Thou

a hundred

('

wiping out

').

cuttest to pieces (vibhindati), and hast


branches; vibhindant ('cutting to pieces')

thy father's name. Do thou (turn) against, and


cut to pieces (vi bhindhi) him that is hostile towards us
6. Non-being arose from the earth, that goes to
is

a great expansion.
Thence, verily,
turn
shall
that, spreading vapours,
against the performer (of spells)
didst grow backward, thou hast fruit
7. Thou

heaven,

(as)

which

is

turned backward.

ward

Ward

off

me

from

far destructive

all

weapons
very
with a hundredfold, guard me with
a thousandfold (strength)!
Indra, the strong, shall
put strength into thee, O prince of plants

curses,
8.

Protect

off

me

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

72

Charm

VII, 65.
curses,
1.

turned backward thou verily didst


apamarga do thou drive all curses quite

With

grow,

with the apamarga-plant, against


sinful deeds.

and the consequences of

fruit

away from here


2. The evil deeds and foul, or the sinful acts
which we have committed, with thee, O apamarga,
whose face is turned to every side, do we wipe them

far

mr4rmane

out (apa

)-

together with one who has


black teeth, or diseased nails, or one who is deformed, with thee, O apamarga, we wipe all that

we have

If

3.

sat

out (apa mr/^mahe).

X,
1.

Charm

1.

The

bride

(spell)

for

fashioned by
it

the

to repel sorceries or spells.

which they
wedding,

hand, shall

go

skilfully

prepare, as

multiform

the

to a distance

(spell),

we

drive

away!

has been brought forward by


the fashioner of the spell, that is endowed with
head, endowed with nose, endowed with ears, and
2.

The

(spell) that

multiform, shall go to a distance we drive it away


been prepared by a 6ildra,
3. (The spell) that has
!

a
prepared by a Ra^a, prepared by woman, prepared
wife
as
a
rejected by her husband,
by Brahmans,
shall recoil
4.

With

upon her
this

fabricator, (and) his kin

herb have

destroyed

which they have


and into thy men.
be to him that prepares
5. Evil

all spells,

that

put into thy field, into thy cattle,

recoil

upon him

evil,

that utters curses

the curse shall

back do we hurl

III.

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

it
against him, that
the spell.

PratUina

6.

Aiigiras,

('

may

it

Back-hurler

the

'),

our overseer and

is

him

slay

73

that fashions

descendant of

officiator (purohita)

do thou drive back again (pratiii/;) the spells, and


slay yonder fashioners of the spells
7. He that has said to thee (the spell)
go on
that
that
do
thou
turn,
upon
enemy,
antagonist
O spell do not seek out us, that are harmless
8. He that has fitted
together thy joints with
!

'

'

skill,

to

as the

him

wagoner (Rtbhu) the

thy course
shall remain unknown to thee
go, there

is

joints of a chariot,

this

person here

9. They that have prepared thee and taken hold


of thee, the cunning wizards
this is what cures it,

destroys the spell, drives


with it do we bathe thee.
10.

as

a river),

back the opposite way

we have come upon

Since

upon

it

(a cow) with a dead

may

possessions

all

come

evil

to

the wretched

calf,

flooded

(spell),

away

(by

go away from me, and may

me

enemies) have made (offerings) to thy


Fathers, or have called thy name at the sacrifice,
may these herbs free thee from every indigenous
11.

evil

If (thy

From

the sin of the gods, and that of the


fathers, from mentions of (thy) name, from (evil
12.

schemes) concocted at home,

may

the herbs free

thee with might, through (this) charm, (and these)


stanzas, (that are) the milk of the AVshis
!

13. As the wind stirs up the dust from the earth,


and the cloud from the atmosphere, thus may all
misfortune, driven by my charm, go away from me!
14.

Stride

away (O

spell),

like a loudly

braying

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

74

been loosened (from the tether)


reach those that have fabricated thee, driven from
here by (my) forceful charm
This is the way, O spell,' with these words
15.
do we lead thee. Thee that hast been sent out
Go this way
against us do we send back again.

she-ass, that has

'

like a crushing

army, with heavy

carts,

thou that art

multiform, and crowned by a crest (?)!


16. In the distance there is light for thee, hitherward there is no road for thee away from us take
;

By another road cross thou ninety


navigable streams, hard to cross! Do not injure,
thy course

go away!

As

the wind the trees, crush down and fell


(the enemy), leave them neither cow, nor horse, nor
Turn from here upon those that
serving-man
17.

have

fabricated

childlessness

thee,

spell,

awaken them

to

The

spell or the magic which they have


buried against thee in the sacrificial straw (barhis),
in the field, (or) in the burial-ground, or if with
18.

superior skill they have practised sorcery against


thee, that art simple and innocent, in thy house-

hold

fire,

The hostile, insidious instrument which they


have brought hither has been discovered that which
has been dug in we have detected.
It shall go
whence it has been brought hither there, like a
horse, it shall disport itself, and slay the offspring of
him that has fashioned the spell
we
20. Swords of good brass are in our house
19.

know how many


to

rise,

joints thou hast,

go away from hence

seekest thou here

O spell Be sure
O stranger, what
!

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

III.

hew

75

spell, thy neck, and thy


Indra
and Agni, to whom
May
belong the children (of men), protect us

21.

feet

shall

run away

off,

22.

King Soma, who guards and

pities us,

and

the lords of the beings shall take pity on us


23. May Bhava and .Sarva cast the lightning, the
!

upon him that performs evil, fashions


a spell, and does wrong
24. If thou art come two-footed, (or) four-footed,
divine missile,

prepared by the fashioner of the spell, multiform,


do thou, having become eight-footed, again go away
from here, O misfortune
25. Anointed, ornamented, and well equipped, go
!

Know, O spell,
away, carrying every misfortune
a
her
as
own
father
thy maker,
daughter
26. Go away, O spell, do not stand still, track
!

enemy) as a wounded (animal)


game, thou the hunter he is not able
down.
(the

27.

Him

laying on

the

first

that

first

He

is

the

to put thee

hurls (the arrow), the other,


with the arrow, and while

in defence, slays

deals the blow, the other returns the blow.

Hear, verily, this speech of mine, and then


return whence thou earnest, against the one that
28.

fashioned thee

Slaughter of an innocent is heinous,


spell
not slay our cow, horse, or serving-man
Wherever thou hast been put down, thence thee do
29.

do

we remove.
30.

Be

If ye are

by a net

we

lighter than a leaf!

enveloped

tear

darkness, covered as if
out from here, send them

in

all spells

back again to him that fashioned them.

The

offspring of them that fashion the spell,


practise magic, or plot against us, crush thou,
spell,
31.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

76

leave none of them


spell

Slay those that fashion the

As

32.

the sun

is

released from darkness, abandons

the night, and the streaks of the dawn, thus every


misery, (every) device prepared by the fashioner of

the

spell, (every)

misfortune, do

leave behind, as

an elephant the dust.

Charm

V, 31.

The

to repel sorceries or spells.

which they have put for thee into an


unburned vessel, that which they have put into
mixed grain, that which they have put into raw
meat, that do I hurl back again.
1.

The

spell

which they have put for thee into


a cock, or that which (they have put) into a goat,
into a crested animal, that which they have put into
a sheep, that do I hurl back again.
3. The spell which they have put for thee into
solipeds, into animals with teeth on both sides, that
which they have put into an ass, that do I hurl back
2.

spell

again.
4. The magic which they have put for thee into
moveable property, or into personal possession, the
spell which they have put into the field, that do
I hurl back
again.
5. The spell which evil-scheming persons have put

for thee into the garhapatya-fire, or into the housefire, that which they have put into the house, that

do

hurl back a^ain.

The spell which they have put for thee into


the assembly-hall, that which (they have put) into
the gaming-place, that which they have put into the
6.

dice, that

do

hurl back again.

III.

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

The

spell

JJ

which they have put for thee into


the army, that which they have put into the arrow
and the weapon, that which they have put into the
drum, that do I hurl back again.
8. The spell which they have placed down for
7.

the well, or have buried in the burial-ground,


that which they have put into (thy) home, that do

thee

in

hurl back again.

That which they have put for thee into human


bones, that which (they have put) into the funeral
fire, to the consuming, burning, flesh-eating fire do
9.

hurl that back again.

By an unbeaten path he

has brought it (the


we drive it out from
spell) hither, by a (beaten) path
in
his
has
fool
here.
The
folly
prepared (the spell)
10.

against those that are surely wise.


11. He that has undertaken it has not been able

he broke his foot, his toe. He,


performed an auspicious act for us, that

to accomplish
luckless,

it

are lucky.

Him

12.

that fashions spells, practises magic, digs

after roots, sends out curses, Indra shall slay with

his

mighty weapon, Agni

(arrow)

V,

shall pierce with his hurled

14.

Charm

to repel sorceries or spells.

An

eagle found thee out, a boar dug thee out


Seek thou,
with his snout.
plant, to injure him
down him that prestrike
that seeks to injure (us),
1.

pares spells (against us)


2. Strike down the wizards, strike
!

down him

that

slay thou, moreover,


prepares spells (against us)
to
that
seeks
O plant, him
injure us!
;

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

78

Cutting out from the skin (of the enemy) as


(from the skin) of an antelope, do ye, O gods,

3.

if

upon him that prepares it, as (one


fastens) an ornament
4. Take hold by the hand and lead away the
Place it in his
spell back to him that prepares it
that
it shall slay him that prepares
so
very presence,
fasten the spell

the spell
5.

The

prepares the

spells,

nounces the curse


the

wheels,

upon him that


the curse upon him that protake

shall

spells

spell

effect

As

a chariot with easy-going


shall turn back upon him that

prepares the spell


6. Whether a woman, or whether a
!

pared the spell for evil,


a horse with the halter.

we

man

has pre-

lead that spell to

him as

Whether thou hast been prepared by the gods,


or hast been prepared by men, we lead thee back
7.

with the help of Indra as an


8.

battles

ally.

Agni, gainer of battles, do thou gain the


With a counter-charm do we hurl back the

upon him that prepares the spell.


9. Hold ready, (O plant,) thy weapon, and strike
him, slay the very one that has prepared (the spell)
We do not whet thee for the destruction of him that
spell

has not practised (spells).


10. Go as a son to his father, bite like an adder
Return thou, O spell,
that has been stepped upon.

him that prepares the


comes his fetters
to

spell,

as one

who

over-

As

the shy deer, the antelope, goes out to


the mating (buck), thus the spell shall reach him that
11.

prepares
12.

it!

Straighter than an arrow

may

it

(the spell) fly

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

III.

ye heaven and earth


against him,
take hold again of him that prepares
of his

game

13.

Like

may

it,

79

that spell

as (a hunter)

(the spell) shall progress in the teeth

fire

As a
of obstacles, like water along its course
chariot with easy-going wheels the spell shall turn
back upon him that prepares the spell
!

VIII,

Prayer for protection addressed to a


made from wood of the sraktya-tree.

5.

man
This

attacking talisman,
it is
fastened upon the man
1.

(itself)

full

man,

is

of force, slays

makes heroes of men, furnishes

enemies,

talis-

shelter,

luck.

provides good
talisman slays
2. This

enemies,

makes strong

men, is powerful, lusty, victorious, strong as a man


it advances against sorceries and destroys them.
;

With

Indra slew Wz'tra, with it


he, full of device, destroyed the Asuras, with it he
conquered both the heaven and earth, with it he
3.

this talisman

conquered the four regions of space.


4. This talisman of sraktya assails and attacks.

With might
us on
5.

all

controlling the enemies,


sides

it

shall protect

Agni has

said this,

and Soma has said

this

These
Brzriaspati, Savitar, Indra (have said) this.
divine purohitas (chaplains) shall turn back for me
(upon the sorcerer) the sorceries with aggressive
amulets
!

have interposed heaven and earth, also the


6.
These divine purohitas
day, and also the sun.
for me (upon the sorcerer)
back
turn
shall
(chaplains)
I

the sorceries with aggressive amulets

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

SO

the folk that make an armour of the


7. (For)
talisman of sraktya like the sun ascending the sky,
it subjects and beats off the sorceries.
8.

With the amulet of sraktya,

powerful spirit, I have gained


enemies, the Rakshas.
9.

The

as

if

with a seer of

all battles, I

slay the

come from the Aiigiras, the


come from the Asuras, the sorceries

sorceries that

sorceries that

that prepare themselves,

by others, both these

and those that are prepared


go away to a distance

shall

across ninety navigable streams


10. As an armour upon him the gods shall
!

tie

the

amulet, Indra, Vishnu, Savitar, Rudra, Agni, Pra^apati, Paramesh^in,Vira^,Vaiivanara,and the seers all.
11.

steer

Thou

art the

most superb of

plants, as

if

the cattle, as if a tiger among beasts


(The amulet) that we did seek, that have

among

of prey.

we

found, a guardian at our side.


He that wears this talisman, verily is a tiger,
a lion as well, and, too, a bull moreover a curtailer
12.

of enemies.
13.

Him

not the

slay

dharvas, nor mortal

men

Apsaras,
all

nor the Gan-

regions does he rule,

that wears this talisman.

Kasyapa has created thee, Ka^yapa has produced thee. Indra wore thee in human (battle)
wearing thee in the close combat he conquered.
The gods did make the talisman an armour of
14.

thousandfold strength.
15. He that plans to harm thee with sorceries,
with (unholy) consecrations and sacrifices him beat
thou back, O Indra, with thy thunderbolt that hath

a hundred joints
16. This talisman verily does assail,
!

full

of might,

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

III.

81

Offspring and wealth it shall protect,


provide defence, abound in luck
1
7. Remove our enemies in the south, remove
victorious.

our enemies

enemies

in

the north

the west

in

(east) of us

light,

Indra, our
hero, place in front

remove,

18. An armour for me be heaven and earth, an


armour day, an armour the sun
An armour for me
be Indra and Agni Dhatar shall bestow (dadhatu)
an armour upon me
19. The armour of Indra and Agni, that is thick
and strong, all the gods united do not pierce. This
great (armour) shall protect my body on all sides,
that I may obtain long life, and reach old age
!

The

20.

divine talisman has ascended

upon me

unto complete exemption from injury. Assemble


about this post that protects the body, furnishes
threefold defence, in order to (secure) strength
21. Into it Indra shall deposit manliness:
!

do

ye,
gods, assemble about it for long life, for
life
lasting a hundred autumns, that he may reach

old age.
22.

May

Indra

who bestows

welfare, the lord of

the people, the slayer of Vrz'tra, the controller of


enemies, he that conquereth and is unconquered,
the soma-drinking bull that frees from danger, fasten

the amulet upon thee

and every

X,

side,

may

it

protect thee on each

by day and by night

Praise of the virtues of an amulet

3.

derived from the vara^a-tree.


1.

Here

the rivals

vara?/a-amulet, a bull that destroys


with it do thou close in upon thy enemies,
is

my

crush them that desire to injure thee


[42]

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

82

2. Break them, crush them, close in upon them


the amulet shall be thy van-guard in front
With
the vara;^a the Devas (gods) did ward off (avara:

yanta) the onslaught of the Asuras (demons) day


after day.

This thousand-eyed, yellow, golden vara^aamulet is a universal cure it shall lay low thy
enemies be thou the first to injure those that hate
3.

thee

This vara;/a will ward off (varayishyate) the


this will
spell that has been spread against thee
this
will
from
human
thee
protect
protect
danger,
thee from all evil
the varawa, shall shut out
5. This divine tree,
The gods, too, have shut out (avivaran)
(varayatai)
the disease that has entered into this (man).
6. If when
asleep thou shalt behold an evil
dream as often as a wild beast shall run an
from (ominous) sneezing, and
inauspicious course
4.

from the

evil

will protect

shriek of a bird, this vara^a-amulet

thee (varayishyate).

From

Arati (grudge), Nirr/ti (misfortune), from


7.
from death and oversorcery, and from danger
strong weapons the vara^a will protect thee.
;

8.

my

The

brothers and

that

we

my mother, that my father, that


my sister have committed the sin

sin that

(ourselves) have committed, from that

divine tree will protect us.


9. Through the vara^a are confused

this

enemies
and my (rival) kin. To untraversed gloom they have
gone they shall go to the nethermost darkness
!

10.

my

(May)

(be)

unharmed, with cows unharmed,


This vara^amen

long-lived, with undiminished

amulet

shall

guard

me

in

every region (of space)

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

III.

83

This vara;^a upon my breast, the kingly,


divine tree, shall smite asunder my enemies, as Indra
the Dasyus, the Asuras (demons)
12. Long-lived, a hundred autumns old, do I wear
this vara^a
kingdom and rule, cattle and strength,
11.

bestow upon me
the wind breaks with might the trees, the
13.
lords of the forest, thus do thou break my rivals,
The
those formerly born, and the latter born
this shall

As

vara^a

watch over thee

shall

As

consume the trees,


the lords of the forest, thus do thou consume my
rivals, those formerly born, and the latter born
14.

the wind and the

fire

The vara^a

shall

watch over thee

15. As, ruined by the wind, the trees lie prostrate,


thus do thou ruin and prostrate my rivals, those
The varawa
formerly born, and the latter born
shall watch over thee
!

Do

thou

varawa, before their


appointed time and before old age, those that aim
to injure him in his cattle, and threaten his sove16.

reignty

cut

off,

As

resplendent, as in him brilliance


has been deposited, thus shall the amulet of vara7*a
17.

hold

the sun

for

fast

sprinkle

me

splendour
18.

is

me

reputation and prosperity, shall


with brilliance, and anoint me with

As splendour

is

in

the moon, and in the sun,

the beholder of men, thus shall the amulet of varawa

hold

fast,

&c.

As

splendour is in the earth, as in this c7atavedas (the fire), thus shall the amulet of vara^a hold
19.

fast,

&c.

20.

As

splendour

in

is

the maiden, as in this

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

84

appointed chariot, thus shall the amulet of vara;za


hold fast, &c.

As

21.

dour

the soma-draught, as splenin the honey-mixture (for guests), thus shall

is

splendour

is

in

the amulet of vara^a hold

As

&c.

fast,

is in the
agnihotra-oblation, as
the
call
vasha/, thus shall the amulet
splendour
of varawa hold fast, &c.

22.

splendour
is in

As

23.

splendour

is

in the sacrificer, as (splendour)

has been deposited in the sacrifice, thus shall the


amulet of varawa hold fast, &c.

As

24.

mesh^in

splendour

varawa hold

is

on

(the lord

in Pra^apati, as in this Para-

high), thus shall the

amulet of

&c.

fast,

As

immortality is in the gods, as truth has


been deposited in them, thus shall the amulet of
vara^a hold fast, &c.
25.

X,

Praise of the virtues of amulet of khadira-

6.

wood
1.

the shape of a ploughshare.

in

The head

of the hostile

that hates me, do

rival,

of the

enemy

cut off with might.


2. This amulet,
produced by the ploughshare,
an
will prepare
armour for me full of stirred drink
I

has come to me, together with sap and lustre.


3. If the skilful workman has injured thee with
his hand or with his knife, the living bright waters
it

shall purify thee

bright
4.

faith

guest
5.

from

that, (so that

thou shalt be)

This amulet has a golden wreath, bestows


and sacrifice and might in our house as a
;

it

shall dwell

Before

it

(the

amulet as a guest) ghee, sura

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

III.

(liquor),

honey, and every kind of food

The amulet having gone

we

85
place.

the gods shall, as a


father for his sons, plan for us growing good, more
to

and more day after day


6. The amulet which EWhaspati
!

tied, the ploughshare dripping with ghee, the strong khadira, unto
strength, that Agni did fasten on that yields him
;

ghee more and more day

after

day

with

me do thou slay
This
amulet which Brzhaspati tied
7.
Indra did fasten on, for strength and heroism
yields him might more and more, &c.
that hate

8. The amulet which EWhaspati tied


Soma did fasten on unto perfect hearing and
.

that verily yields

him

lustre

Surya

that

that

that

seeing

more and more, &c.

The amulet which

9.

those

it

that
Brz'haspati tied
did fasten on, with that he conquered these

directions of space

that yields

him prosperity more

and more, &c.


10.

The amulet which

Brzhaspati tied

wear-

ing that amulet i^andramas (the moon) conquered


the golden cities of the Asuras and the Danavas
;

that yields
11.

Vata

him fortune more and more, &c.

The amulet which


(wind),

that

yields

Brz'haspati tied for swift

him strength more and

more, &c.

The amulet which

Br/haspati tied for swift


Asvins, do ye guard this
that yields the two physicians (the
plough-land
Asvins) might more and more, &c.
12.

Vata, with that amulet,

The amulet which

Br/haspati tied for swift


Savitar
Vata, wearing that,
through it conquered
13.

this

light

more, &c.

that

yields

him abundance more and

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

86

The amulet which

Br/haspati tied for swift


the
waters
ever run undiminVata, wearing that,
ished
that verily yields them ambrosia more and
14.

more, &c.
1

5.

Vata,

The amulet which


that

fasten on

Brzhaspati tied for swift


king Varuwa did

amulet

comforting

him

that verily yields

truth

more and

more, &c.

The amulet which

Brz'haspati tied for swift


that
the
Vata, wearing
gods did conquer all the
that verily yields them conquest
worlds in battle
16.

more and more, &c.


17.

The

Vata,

that

fasten

on

amulet which Br/haspati tied for swift


comforting amulet the divinities did
that verily yields

them

all

more and

more, &c.
18.

The

seasons did fasten

(of the year) did fasten

fasten
19.

it

on,

The

it

it

on.

on; the divisions


Since the year did

it
guards every being.
intermediate directions did fasten

the directions did fasten

it

The amulet

on.

it

on;

created

by Pra^apati has subjected those that hate me.


20. The Atharvans did tie it on, the descendants
of the Atharvans did

tie

it

on

with these

the Aiigiras cleft the castles of the Dasyus.


it those that hate me do thou slay

allied,

With

21.

That Dhatar did fasten on (then) he shaped


With it those that hate me do thou slay
:

the being.

The amulet which B/'/haspati tied


of the Asuras, that has
destructive
gods,
me together with sap and lustre.
22.

for

come

the
to

me together
with
food and
with cows, goats, and sheep, together
23.

The amulet

offspring.

has come to

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

III.

The amulet

87

me

has come to

together
with rice and barley, together with might and pros24.

perity.

The amulet

25.

has come to

me

with a stream

of honey and ghee together with sweet drink.

has come to me together


26. The amulet
with nourishment and milk, together with goods and
.

fortune.

The amulet

me

has come to

together
with brilliance and strength, together with glory and
27.

reputation.

has come to me together


kinds of prosperity.
29. This amulet the gods shall give me unto
prosperity, the mighty amulet that strengthens
28.

with

The amulet

all

sovereignty and injures the rivals

An

(amulet) auspicious
fasten upon (me), together with
30.

exaltation) and
rivals, it

31.

me

for

brilliance

has subjected

my

thou shalt

brahma

Free from

(spiritual

rivals, slaying

rivals.

This god-born amulet, the sap milked from

which these three worlds revere,


superior to

him that hates me

it

shall
shall

render

me

ascend upon

my head unto excellence


32. The amulet upon which the gods, the Fathers,
and men ever live, shall ascend upon my head unto
!

excellence

33. As the seed grows in the field, in the furrow


drawn by the ploughshare, thus in me offspring,
cattle, and every kind of food shall grow up
!

34.

Upon whom, O thou amulet that prosperest the


I

have fastened thee (that

art) propitious,
sacrificial
a
hundredfold
that
him,
amulet,
yieldest
reward, thou shalt inspire unto excellence
sacrifice,

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

S8

This fire-wood that has been laid on together


oblations do thou, Agni, gladly accept

35.

with the

may we
(this)

and

in this

(fire), through
charm, find favour, well-being, offspring, sight,

cattle

1.

if

Prayer to Varu;^a for protection against


treacherous designs.

IV, 16.

as

kindled Catavedas

The

great guardian among these (gods) sees


from anear. He that thinketh he is moving

the gods know.


stands, walks, or sneaks about,

all this

stealthily

man

if he
he
into
his
goes slinking away,
goes
hiding-place
if two persons sit together and scheme,
king Varu^a
is there as a third, and knows it.
3. Both this earth here belongs to king Varu;za,
and also yonder broad sky whose boundaries are far
away. Moreover these two oceans are the loins of
Varu/^a
yea, he is hidden in this small (drop of)
2.

If

if

water.

He

beyond the heaven far


from king Varu;/a. His
spies come hither (to the earth) from heaven, with
a thousand eyes do they watch over the earth.
4.

that should

away would not be

flee

free

King Varu^a

sees through all that is between


all that is beyond.
He has
earth,
counted the winkings of men's eyes. As a (winning)
5.

heaven and

and

gamester puts down his

dice,

thus does he establish

these (laws).

which, seven by seven,


threefold, lie spread out, ensnare him that speaks
him that speaks the truth they shall
falsehood
6.

May

all

let

go

thy fateful

toils

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

III.

7.

With a hundred

89

Variwa, surround
not go free from thee, O thou

him, let the liar


that observest men

hanging loose,
all about

snares,

The rogue

like a

shall

sit,

his belly

cask without hoops, bursting

With

(the snare of) Varuzza which is fastened


lengthwise, and that which (is fastened) broadwise,
with the indigenous and the foreign, with the divine
8.

and the human,


9.

With

all

these snares do

fetter thee,

N. N.,

woman N. N.

descended from N. N., the son of the


all these do I
design for thee.

Imprecation against enemies thwarting


holy work.

II, 12.

Heaven and

broad atmosphere, the


and
the
field,
wonderful, far-striding
the
broad
moreover,
atmosphere guarded
(Vishnu)
Vata
these
here be inflamed,
by
(the wind)
may
1.

earth, the

goddess of the
;

when
2.

am

inflamed

Hear

this,

ye revered gods

Let BharadMay he who

me songs of praise
our
injures
plan be bound in the fetter (of
disease) and joined to misfortune!
Hear, O soma-drinking Indra, what with
3.
I cleave, as
one
burning heart I shout to thee
va"a

recite for

this

cleaves a tree with an axe,

him

that injures this

our plan.
4.

With

(the aid of) thrice eighty saman-singers,

with (the aid of) the Adityas, Vasus, and Aiigiras


may our father's sacrifices and gifts to the priests
aid us
5.

do

May

seize this

one with

fateful fervour.

heaven and earth look

the gods support

me

after

ye Arigiras,

me,

may

all

ye fathers

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

90

may he who

devoted to Soma,
misfortune

does harm enter into

6. He who perchance despises us, O ye Maruts,


he who abuses the holy practice which is being
performed by us, may his evil deeds be firebrands
to him, may the heavens surround with fire the

hater of holy practices

7. Thy seven in-breathings and thy eight marrows, these do I cut for thee by means of my charm.

Thou

shalt

go to the seat of Yama,

with Agni as thy guide


8.

fitly

prepared,

set thy footstep

upon the kindled

fire.

Agni surround thy body, may thy voice enter


breath

VII,
1.

with

May
into

Frustration of the sacrifice of an enemy.

70.

Whenever yonder person


his

offers

in his thought,

and

sacrifice

speech,
accompanied by
oblations and benedictions, may Nirrzti (the goddess
of destruction), allying herself with death, smite his
offering before
2.

May

his true

it

takes effect

sorcerers, Nirrzti, as well as Rakshas,

work with

error

May the

mar

gods, despatched

by Indra, scatter (churn) his sacrificial butter;


that which yonder person offers not succeed

may

3.

The two

pouncing

agile supreme rulers, like two eagles


down, shall strike the sacrificial butter of

the enemy, whosoever plans evil against us


4.
I

Back do

shut.

With

tie

both thy two arms, thy mouth


god Agni have I destroyed

the fury of

thy oblation.
I tie
thy two arms, I shut thy mouth. With the
of
terrible
fury
Agni have I destroyed thy oblation.

5.

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

III.

Charm

against curses and hostile plots,


undertaken with a certain plant.

II, 7.

1.

91

The god-begotten

plant,

hated by the wicked,

which wipes away the curses (of the enemies), like


water a foul spot it has washed away all curses

from me.
2.

The

curse of the rival and the curse of the

kinswoman, the curse which the Brahman


in wrath, all that (do thou put) under our
3.

earth

From heaven
it

rises

up

shall utter

feet

is
suspended, from the
her that has a thousand

her root
with

shoots do thou protect us on all sides


4. Protect me, protect my offspring, protect our
goods let not ill-will overcome us, let not hostile
!

schemes overcome us
5.

The

session

curse shall go to the curser; joint poswe have with the friend. Of the

shall

enemy who bewitches with

(his)

eye we hew

off

the ribs.
Ill, 6.

The

asvattha-tree as a destroyer of
enemies.

male has sprung from a male, the a^vattha


(ficus religiosa) from the khadira (acacia catechu).
May this slay my enemies, those whom I hate and
1.

those
2.

who

hate

me

Crush the enemies, as they rush

on,

O asvattha,

'displacer,' allied with Indra, the slayer of


(allied) with Mitra and Varu/za

Vmra,

3.

As

thou didst break forth,

a^vattha, into the

great flood (of the air), thus do thou break up


those whom I hate and those who hate me

all

4.

Thou

that goest conquering as a conquering

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

92
bull,

with thee here,

our rivals

asvattha,

may we conquer

(the goddess of destruction),


bind
in
the toils of death that cannot
asvattha,
be loosened those enemies of mine whom I hate
5.

May

Nirrz'ti

and who hate me

thou climbest up the trees, O asvattha, and


renderest them subordinate, thus do thou split in two
6.

As

the head of

enemy, and overcome him

my

down

like a
enemies)
There is no
ship cut loose from its moorings
those
that
have
driven out
for
been
returning- again
7.

They

shall

(the

float
!

by the

'

displaces'
drive them out with

mind, drive them


out with my thought, and also with my incantation.
drive them out with a branch of the asvattha8.

my

We

tree.

Oblation for the suppression of enemies

VI, 75.

(nairbadhyaiw havi/).
1.

Forth from his home do

who

yonder,
the oblation

drive that person

as a rival contends with us

broken him to

devoted to

suppression

through
Indra has
:

pieces.

Indra, the slayer of Wz'tra, shall drive him to


the remotest distance, from which in all successive
2.

years he shall not again return


3. He shall go to the three distances, he shall
go beyond the five peoples he shall go beyond
!

the three ethers, whence he shall not again in all


successive years return, while the sun is upon the

heavens

IMPRECATIONS AGAINST DEMONS, ETC.

III.

93

Curse against one that practises hostile

VI, 37.

charms.
1.

The thousand-eyed

curse

having-

yoked

his

come

hither, seeking out him that curses


me, as a wolf the house of him that owns sheep.
2. Avoid us, O curse, as a
burning fire (avoids)

chariot has

a lake

him that curses

Strike here

us,

as the

lightning of heaven the tree


3. He that shall curse us when
!

we do not curse,
and he that shall curse us when we do curse, him
do I hurl to death as a bone to a dog upon the
ground.

VII,

13.

Charm

to deprive

enemies of their

strength.
1.

As

2.

As many enemies

the rising sun takes away the lustre of the


stars, thus do I take away the strength of both the
women and the men that hate me.

me, as

away the

come on

as ye are, looking out against


of those that hate me do I take

strength, as the sun takes

of persons asleep (while

it

rises).

away the strength

IV.

CHARMS PERTAINING TO WOMEN (STRIKARMAAT).


Charm

II, 36.
1.

come

May,

to us,

fortune

may he come

at festivals,

husband

Agni, a suitor after our

May

to obtain a husband.

to this

own

heart

maiden with our

she, agreeable to

suitors, charming
promptly obtain happiness through a

Agreeable to Soma, agreeable to Brahma,


arranged by Aryaman, with the unfailing certainty
of god Dhatar, do I bestow upon thee good fortune,
2.

the acquisition of a husband.


3. This woman shall obtain a husband, since king
Soma makes her lovely May she, begetting sons,
!

become a queen

may

shine in loveliness
4.

As

this

she, going to her husband,

comfortable cave,

Maghavan

(Indra),

furnishing a safe abode, hath become pleasing to animals, thus may this woman be a favourite of fortune

(Bhaga), beloved, not at odds with her husband


of
5. Do thou ascend the full, inexhaustible ship
!

upon this bring hither the suitor


(fortune)
shall be agreeable (to thee)

Bhaga

who
6.

by thy shouts, O lord of wealth,


bend his mind towards her turn thou the

Bring hither

the suitor,

right side of every agreeable suitor towards (her)


7.

This

gold

and bdellium,

this

balsam,

and

CHARMS PERTAINING TO WOMEN.

IV.

95

these have prepared thee for


husbands, that thou mayest obtain the one that is

Bhaga

(fortune), too

agreeable.

Hither to thee Savitar shall lead the husband


Do thou, O herb, bestow (him)
that is agreeable
8.

upon her

Charm

VI, 60.

husband.

for obtaining a

This Aryaman (wooer) with loosened crest


of hair comes hither in front (of the procession),
seeking a husband for this spinster, and a wife for
this wifeless man.
2. This maid, O Aryaman, has w earied of going
1.

to the wedding-feasts of other

without

fail,

weddingf-feast

women.

Aryaman, other

Now

women go

shall,

to her

this
3. Dhatar (the creator) supports (dadhara)
earth, Dhatar supports the heavens, and the sun.
May Dhatar furnish this spinster with a husband

after her

own

VI, 82.

heart

Charm

for obtaining a wife.

name

of him that comes here, that


hath come here, and is arriving I crave (the name)
of Indra, Vrztra's slayer, the Vasava of hundredI

1.

call

the

fold strength.

The road by which

2.

the Asvins carried

as a bride Surya, Savitar's daughter,

Bhaga

(fortune) told me,

'

'

by

away

that road,'

thou shalt bring here a

'

wife

3. With thy wealth-procuring, great, golden hook,


Indra, husband of Sa./d, procure a wife for me

that desireth a wife

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

96

VI,

Blessing for a married couple.

78.

this oblation, that causes prosperity,

Through

1.

man

anew may he excel the


they have brought to him with his sap
this

may
that

flourish

wife

May

2.

May

this

he excel in strength, excel in royalty


couple be inexhaustible in wealth that
!

bestows thousandfold lustre

a
3. Tvash/ar begot (for thee)
for her begot thee as a husband.
bestow upon you two a thousand
bestow upon you long life

Tvash/ar
May Tvash/ar
lives, may he

wife,

VII, 36.

Love-charm spoken by a bridal couple.

The

eyes of us two shine like honey, our foreheads


Place me within thy heart
gleam
may one mind be in common to us both
like ointment.

VII,

2>7-

Charm pronounced by

the bride over

the bridegroom.
I

envelope thee

in

by Manu

garment that was produced


man), that thou shalt be mine

my

(the first
shalt
not even discourse of other
alone,

VI, 81.

women

bracelet as an amulet to ensure

conception.

holder art thou, holdest both hands, drivest


An acquirer of offspring and
Rakshas.
wealth this bracelet hath become
1.

the

off

2.

be put

bracelet, open up the

(into

it)

Do

thou,

womb,

that the

embryo

limit (-setting bracelet),

IV.

CHARMS PERTAINING TO WOMEN.

him here

furnish a son, bring

comest here (agame)

97

gamaya), thou that

(a

3. The bracelet that Aditi wore, when she desired


a son, Tvash/ar shall fasten upon this woman, intending that she shall beget a son.

Charm

III, 23.

for obtaining a son

That which has caused thee

1.

(puwsavanam).

to miscarry

do we

away from thee, that very thing do we deposit


outside of thee, away in a far place.
2. Into thy womb shall enter a male
germ, as an
drive

arrow into a quiver


a son ten months old

May

man be born

there,

male son do thou produce, and after him


a male shall be born
Thou shalt be the mother
of sons, of those who are born, and those whom
thou shalt bear
4. By the effective seed which bulls put forth do
thou obtain a son be a fruitful milch-cow
3.

lord of creatures)

Pra^apati's (the
perform for thee
5.

may

womb

the

germ enter

work do
into thy

Obtain thou, woman, a son who shall bring


prosperity to thee, and bring thou prosperity to him!
!

The

plants whose father was the sky, whose


mother the earth, whose root the (heavenly) ocean
6.

may
a son

VI,

those

herbs aid thee

divine

in

obtaining

11.

Charm

for obtaining a

son (puwsavanam).

The

aivattha (ficus religiosa) has mounted the


then a male child was pro.rami (mimosa suma)
1.

duced.
that

That, forsooth,

do we bring
[42]

the

is

way

to (our) wives.
11

to obtain a son

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

98

In the male, forsooth, seed doth grow, that is


poured into the female. That, forsooth, is the way
2.

been told by Pra^apati.


3. Pra^apati, Anumati, and Sinivali have fashioned
him.
May he (Pra^apati) elsewhere afford the birth
of a female, but here he shall bestow a man

to obtain a son

that has

VII,

35.

An

incantation to

make

woman

sterile.

The

1.

back,

other enemies conquer with might; beat


67atavedas, those that are not yet born
!

Enrich

this kingdom unto happiness, may all the


acclaim
this man
gods
2. Of these hundred entrails of thine, as well as
!

of the thousand canals, of


openings with a stone.

all

these have

closed the

part of the womb do I place below,


there shall come to thee neither offspring nor birth
3.

The upper

render thee sterile and devoid of offspring


do I make into a cover for thee.
I

VI,
1.

As

17.

Charm

a stone

to prevent miscarriage.

this great earth conceives the

germs of the

beings, thus shall thy embryo be held fast, to produce


a child after pregnancy!
2. As
this great earth holds these trees, thus
shall thy

after

embryo be held

pregnancy

to produce a child

fast,

As this great earth holds the mountains and


the peaks, thus shall thy embryo be held fast, to
produce a child after pregnancy
3.

4.

As

this great earth holds the

animals scattered

CHARMS PERTAINING TO WOMEN.

IV.

thus shall thy embryo be held

far,

a child after pregnancy

thee

the

Pushan

for easy parturition.

as active hotar-priest shall utter for

Aryaman

1.

at

vasha/'-call

May

to produce

Charm

11.

I,

fast,

99

(this)

this

woman,

the proper way, be delivered,


that she shall brine forth

(soma-) pressing,

(herself) begotten in

may

her joints relax,

Four

2.

the earth

May
3.

directions has the heaven,

and also four

(from these) the gods created the embryo.


they open her, that she shall bring forth
May Sushan open her womb do we cause
:

Do

to gape.

thou,

Sushawa, loosen the womb,

do thou, O Bishkala, let go (the embryo)


4. Attached not at all to the flesh, nor
not at

to the

all

marrow,

may

to the fat,

the splotched, moist,


a dog
May

placenta come down to be eaten by


the placenta fall down

open thy vagina, thy womb, thy canals


separate the mother and the son, the child along
I

5.

split

with the placenta.


May the placenta fall down
6. As flies the wind, as flies the mind, as
fly the
so
do
O
ten
months
thou,
winged birds,
embryo,
!

old, fall
fall

along with the placenta

down

I,

34.

Charm

with

licorice,

of a

This plant

1.

dig for thee.

make
2.

my

us

May

the placenta

full

is

to secure the love

woman.

born of honey, with honey do we


art begotten, do thou

Of honey thou
of honey

At

the tip of my tongue may I have honey, at


In my
tongue's root the sweetness of honey
!

11

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

IOO

power alone
wish

my

to

3.

my

departure.

4.

than

thou then be, thou shalt come up

Sweet as honey

honey,

me

shalt.

is

my entrance,

With my voice do
become like honey

may I
am sweeter

sweet as honey
speak sweet as

than honey, fuller of sweetness


Mayest thou, without fail, long for

licorice.

alone, (as a bee) for a branch full of

honey

have surrounded thee with a clinging sugarcane, to remove aversion, so that thou shalt not be
5.

me

averse to

Charm

II, 30.

to secure the love of a

woman.

As

the wind tears this grass from the surface


of the earth, thus do I tear thy soul, so that thou,
1.

woman,

shalt love, shalt not

be averse to

me

two A.fvins, shall unite and bring


the
together
loving pair united are the fortunes of
both of you (lovers), united the thoughts, united the
2.

If ye,

purposes

When birds desire to


chirp, may my call go there,
3.

the shaft

chirp, lustily desire to

as an arrow-point

upon

What

within shall be without, what is without shall be within


Take captive,
herb, the
soul of the maidens endowed with every charm
4.

is

5. Longing for a husband this woman hath come,


have come longing for a wife. As a loudly neighing horse I have attained to my good fortune
I

VI,

8.

1.

As

thus

Charm

to secure the love of a

woman.

the creeper embraces the tree on all sides,


do thou embrace me, so that thou, woman,

CHARMS PERTAINING TO WOMEN.

IV.

to

me, so that thou shalt not be averse

love

shalt

IOI

me
2. As
!

the eagle when he flies forth presses his


wings against the earth, thus do I fasten down thy
mind, so that thou, woman, shalt love me, so that

thou shalt not be averse to me.

As

the sun day by day goes about this heaven


earth, thus do I go about thy mind, so that
thou, woman, shalt love me, so that thou shalt not
3.

and

be averse
VI,
1.

after

to

me.

Charm

9.

to secure the love of a

Hanker thou

my

after

my

eyes,

my

thighs

woman.
hanker

body,

my

The

eyes of thee, as

feet,

thou lustest after me, and thy hair shall be parched


with love
!

2.

make

heart, so that thou shalt

up

to
3.

wish

my
The

my arm, cling to my
in my power, shalt come

thee cling to

be

cows, the mothers of the ghee, who lick


whose heart love is planted, shall

their young, in

make yonder woman bestow

Charm

VI, 102.

love upon

me

to secure the love of a

woman.

draught animal, O ye A^vins, comes


on, and proceeds, thus may thy soul come on, and
1.

As

this

proceed to
2.

stallion

me

draw
the

to myself thy mind, as the leading


As the stalk of
female side-horse.

mind fasten
grass torn by the wind, thus shall thy
itself

upon me

coaxing mixture of salve, of sweet wood, of


kush///a, and of spikenard, do I deftly pick out with
3.

the hands of

Bhaga (good

fortune).

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

102

Charm

Ill, 25.

to arouse the passionate love

of a woman.

do
bed
With
the
terrible
thy
arrow of Kama (love) do I pierce thee in the heart.
2. The arrow, winged with longing, barbed with
love, whose shaft is undeviating desire, with that,
1.

(love), the disquieter, disquiet thee;

May

not hold

out upon

well-aimed,
3.

With

Kama

shall pierce thee in the heart

that well-aimed arrow of

Kama

which

parches the spleen, whose plume flies forward, which


burns up, do I pierce thee in the heart.

Consumed by burning ardour, with parched


mouth, do thou (woman) come to me, pliant, (thy)
4.

pride laid aside, mine alone, speaking sweetly and


to

me

devoted

drive thee with a goad from thy mother and


5.
thy father, so that thou shalt be in my power, shalt
come up to my wish.
I

6.

All her thoughts do ye,

Mitra and Varu^a,


Then, having deprived her of her
put her into my power alone

drive out of her!


will,

VI, 139.

Charm

to arouse the passionate love

of a woman.

Clinging to the ground thou didst grow, (O


a hundred
plant), that producest bliss for me
1.

branches extend from thee, three and thirty grow


down from thee with this plant of a thousand
:

leaves thy heart do I parch.


2. Thy heart shall
parch (with love) for me, and
thy mouth shall parch (with love for me)
Languish,
!

CHARMS PERTAINING TO WOMEN.

IV.

IO3

moreover, with love for me, with parched mouth


pass thy days
3.

Thou

that

causest

affection,

kindlest (love),

brown, lovely (plant), draw (us) together; draw


together yonder woman and myself, our hearts make
the same
4. As the mouth of him that hath not drunk dries
!

up,

thus

thou with love for

languish

parched mouth pass thy days


5.

As

me, with

the ichneumon tears the serpent, and joins

him together again, thus, O potent


together what hath been torn by love

(plant),

join

VII, 38.
1.

me
him

Charm

man.

to secure the love of a

This potent herb do I dig out: it draws toward


It brings back
the eye, causes (love's) tears.
who has gone to a distance, rejoices him that

approaches me.
2.

By

with which the Asurl allured

(the plant)

Indra away from the gods, by that do


that I may be well-beloved of thee

subject thee,

3.

Thy

face

is

turned towards

Soma

(the moon),

thy face is turned towards Surya (the sun), thy face


is turned towards all the gods
't is thee here that
:

we do
4.

invoke.

My

weight

To me

speech, not thine, (in this matter) hath


in the assembly, forsooth, do thou speak

alone

shalt

discourse of other
5.

thou belong, shalt not even

women

Whether thou

art

beyond the haunts of men,

or whether across the river, this very herb, as


a captive bound, shall bring thee back to

me

if

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

104

Charm

VI, 130.

to arouse the passionate love

of a man.

This yearning love comes from the Apsaras,


the victorious, imbued with victory.
Ye gods, send
forth the yearning love
may yonder man burn
1.

me

after

My

2.

wish

3.

me

me, devoted he

shall long for

Ye gods, send forth the yearning


burn after me
man
may yonder
That yonder man shall long for me, (but) I for

shall long for

love

he

is,
!

him nevermore, ye gods, send


love
4.

may yonder man

Do

do thou,

ye,

intoxicate

forth the yearning


burn after me
!

Maruts, intoxicate

mid-air, intoxicate

him

VI, 131.

him

May yonder man

Charm

him (with love)


do thou, O Agni,
burn after

me

to arouse the passionate love

of a man.
1.

From

thy head unto thy feet do

longing
yearning love
(love's)

2.

Favour

Akuti

may
3.

implant

Ye gods, send forth


into thee.
may yonder man burn after me

the

this

(plan),

Anumati

fit

it

together,

Ye

gods, send forth the yearning love


man
burn after me
yonder
If thou dost run three leagues away, (or even)
!

leagues, the distance coursed by a horseman,


from there thou shalt again return, shalt be the
father of our sons
five

VI, 132.

Charm

to arouse the passionate love

of a man.
1.

Love's consuming longing, together with yearn-

CHARMS PERTAINING TO WOMEN.

IV.

IO5

which the gods have poured into the waters,


that do I kindle for thee by the law of Varuzza
ing,

Love's consuming longing, together with yearning, which the all-gods (vii've deva/z) have poured
into the waters, that do I kindle for thee
by the law
of Varuna.
2.

3. Love's consuming longing, together with yearning, which Indra;zi has poured into the waters, that

do

kindle for thee by the law of

Varuna

Love's consuming longing, together with yearnwhich


Indra and Agni have poured into the
ing,
waters, that do I kindle for thee by the law of
4.

Varuzza
5.

ing,

Love's consuming longing, together with yearnwhich Mitra and Varu/za have poured into the

waters, that do

Varuna

IV,
1.

kindle for thee by the

law of

The

5.

Charm

bull with a

at

an assignation.

thousand horns who rose out

of the sea, with the aid of him, the mighty one, do


we put the folks to sleep.
2.

The wind blows

Do

looks on.
all

not over the earth.

No

one

thou then, befriended of Indra, put

women and dogs to sleep


3. The women that lie upon
!

beds, and they that

rest in

couches and upon

litters,

the

women

all

do we put to sleep.
have held fast. Eye
4. Every moving thing
and breath I have held fast. I have held fast all
that exhale sweet fragrance,

limbs
5.

in

Of

the deep gloom of the night.


him that sits, and him that walks, of him

that stands

and looks about, of these the eyes we do

shut, just as these premises (are shut).

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

106

The mother

6.

the

shall sleep, the father shall sleep,

shall sleep, the lord of the

dog

house

shall sleep

All her relations shall sleep, and these people round

about shall sleep


7.

sleep, put

thou to sleep

magic that induces sleep


until the

sun

rises

appears, like Indra,

Charm

VI, 77.

may

all

people with the

Put the others to sleep


be awake until the dawn

unharmed, uninjured!

to cause the return of a truant

woman.
1.

The heavens have


have

creatures

all

stood, the earth has stood,

stood.

The mountains have

stood upon their foundation, the horses


I have caused to stand.
2.

Him

control of

in

the stable

that has control of departure, that has


coming home, return, and turning in, that

shepherd do

also

call.

(^atavedas (Agni), cause thou to turn in;


3.
a hundred ways hither shall be thine, a thousand

modes of return
restore us again

VI,
1.

The

18.

first

shall

be thine

with these do thou

Charm

to allay jealousy.

impulse of jealousy, moreover the

one that comes after the first, the fire, the heartburning, that do we waft away from thee.
2. As the earth is dead in spirit, in spirit more
dead than the dead, and as the spirit of him that
has died, thus shall the
be dead

spirit of

the jealous (man)

3.

Yon

fluttering little spirit that has

been fixed

CHARMS PERTAINING TO WOMEN.

IV.

into thy heart, from it the jealousy


air from a water-skin.

Charm

VII, 45.

do

IO7

remove, as

to allay jealousy.

1. From folk
belonging to all kinds of people,
from the Sindhu (Indus) thou hast been brought
hither
from a distance, I ween, has been fetched
:

the very
2.

As

burns

remedy
if

for jealousy.

fire is

thou quench, as a
I,

14.
1.

glory,

if

the forest-fire

jealousy of his do
quenched) with water

fire (is

woman's incantation against her

rival.

have taken unto myself her fortune and her


Like a mountain with
as a wreath off a tree.

broad foundation
parents
2.

burning him, as

in various directions, this

she

may

sit

a long time with her

This

woman

be subjected to thee as thy


let her be fixed to
(till then)

shall

O king Yama
house
of her mother, or her brother, or her
the

wife,

father

woman

be the keeper of thy house,


king (Yama), and her do we make over to thee

3.

This

shall

with her relatives, until (her hair)

she long sit


drops from her head

May
4.

of

incantation of Asita, of Ka^yapa, and


cover up thy fortune, as women cover

With the

Gaya do

(something) within a chest.


Ill, 18.

Charm

of a

woman

against a rival or

co-wife.

dig up this plant, of herbs the most potent,


by whose power rival women are overcome, and
husbands are obtained.
1.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

IOS

thou (plant) with erect leaves, lovely, do


thou, urged on by the gods, full of might, drive
away my rival, make my husband mine alone
2.

He

did not, forsooth, call thy name, and thou


3.
To the very
shalt not delight in this husband
!

we

farthest distance do
4.

Superior

am

I,

drive our rival.


superior (plant), superior,

Now

truly, to superior (women).


inferior to those that are inferior
5.

am

shall

my

be

rival

overpowering, and thou, (O

plant), art

completely overpowering.
Having both grown
of power, let us overpower my rival

full

About thee (my husband) I have placed the


overpowering (plant), upon thee placed the very
overpowering one. May thy mind run after me as
6.

a calf after the cow, as water along

VI, 138.

Charm

its

for depriving a

course

man

of his

virility.
1.

As

herb

the best of the plants thou art reputed,


turn this man for me to-day into a eunuch

that wears his hair dressed

Turn him

eunuch that wears his hair


Then
one that wears a hood
Indra with a pair of stones shall break his testicles
both
3. O eunuch, into a eunuch thee I have turned
2.

dressed, and

into a

into

O
O
A

have turned
castrate,
weakling, into a weakling thee I have turned
hood upon his head, and a hair-net do we place.
4. The two canals, fashioned by the gods, in
which man's power rests, in thy testicles
I break them with a club.
into a

castrate

thee

CHARMS PERTAINING TO WOMEN.

IV.

As women break

5.

a stone, thus do

I,

Charm

18.

1.

The

break thy

to

reeds for a

mattress

IO9
with

member

remove evil bodily


from a woman.

characteristics

mark, the lalami (with spot on the

(foul)

forehead), the Arati (grudging demon), do we drive


out.
Then the (signs) that are auspicious (shall

remain) with us
bring the Arati

(yet)

we

beget offspring do

to

2.

feet,

Savitar drive out uncouthness from her

May

Mitra, and

may Varuwa,

out from her hands


out for us
this
3.

Aryaman (drive it)


may Anumati kindly drive it

For happiness the gods have created

woman.

The

fierceness that

or in thy look,

charm.
4.

all

is

that do

in thyself, in

we

strike

Savitar prosper thee


goat-footed, the bull-toothed,

May god

The

thy body,

away with our


!

her

who

scares the cattle, the snorting one, the vWidhi (the


driveling one), the lalami (with spot on the forehead), these do

VI, no.

Of

we

drive from us.

Expiatory charm for a child born


under an unlucky star.

(O Agni), thou wast worthy of supthou wast the priest in


the
sacrifice
plication at
1.

yore,

now anew shalt sit


Agni, thy own body,

olden times, and


Delight,

bring good

Him

fortune here to us

(at

our

sacrifice)

and, sacrificing,

that hath been born under the (constellation) ^yesh/7/aghni ('she that slays the oldest'), or
2.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

IIO

under the wikrtXJkw ('they that uproot'), save thou


from being torn up by the root by Yama (death)
May he (Agni) guide him across all misfortunes to
long life, to a life of a hundred autumns
born
3. On a tiger (-like) day the hero was born
under a (good) constellation he becometh a mighty
Let him not slay, when he grows up, his
hero.
!

him not
begotten him
father,

let

injure

the

mother that hath

VI, 140.

Expiation for the irregular appearance


of the

1.

pair of teeth.

Those two

forth, eager to

first

teeth, the tigers, that have broken


devour father and mother, do thou,

Brahma^aspati ^atavedas, render auspicious


Do ye eat rice, eat barley, and eat, too, beans,
!

2.

as well as

deposited

sesamum
for

your

That, O teeth,
enrichment.
Do

is

the share

not

injure

and mother
Since
3.
ye have been invoked, O teeth, be ye in
unison kind and propitious
Elsewhere, O teeth,

father

away the fierce (qualities) of your body


not injure father and mother!

shall pass

Do

V.

CHARMS PERTAINING TO ROYALTY


(RAGAKARMAiVI).
IV,
i.

Prayer at the consecration of a king.

8.

Himself prosperous (bhuto), he does put strength


he became the chief lord

into the beings (bhuteshu)

To his consecration
beings (bhutanam).
the
death does come
king, favour this
may he,
of the

kingdom

Come

do not glance away as


a mighty guardian, slayer of enemies
Step hither,
the gods shall
thou who prosperest thy friends
2.

forth hither

bless thee
3.

lustre.

Asura

(men) did attend


grace, he moves, shining by his

step hither

did

Clothed

him.

own

As he

in

This

endowed

all

the great name of the manly


with every form (quality) he

is

entered upon immortal (deeds).


4. Thyself a tiger, do thou upon this tiger-skin
stride (victorious) through the great regions! All
the

clans

shall

wish

waters, rich in sap


5.

for

thee,

and the heavenly

The heavenly waters,

rich in sap, flow joyously,

(and too) those in the sky and upon the earth


the lustre of all of these do I sprinkle thee.

with

sprinkled thee with their lustre,


the heavenly waters rich in sap.
May Savitar thus
fashion thee, that thou shalt prosper thy friends
6.

They have

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

112

(The waters) thus embracing him, the tiger,


promote him, the lion, to great good fortune. Him,
the leopard in the midst of the waters, as though
7.

the ocean, the beneficent (floods, or the


vigorous priests) cleanse thoroughly

standing

in

Ill, 3.

Charm

for the restoration of

an exiled

king.

may he

(Agni) has shouted loud:

1.

here well

Spread thyself out, O Agni, over


perform his work
The allthe far-reaching hemispheres of the world
bring hither
possessing Maruts shall engage thee
!

who devoutly spends the offering


However far he be, the red (steeds) shall urge

that (king)
2.

hither Indra, the seer, to friendship, since the gods,


(chanting) for him the gayatri, the br?'hati, and the

arka (songs),
3. From
Soma shall

cite

courage into him with the

infused

sautramawi-sacrifice

the waters king Varima shall call thee,


thee from the mountains, Indra shall

call

thee to these clans

to these clans

Turn

into

an eagle and

fly

An

eagle shall bring hither from a distance


him that is fit to be called, (yet) wanders exiled in
4.

The Ai'vins shall prepare for thee


a strange land
Do ye, his kinfolk, gather
a path, easy to travel
!

close
5.

about him

Thy opponents

chosen thee

call,

Agni, and

Indra,

kept prosperity with


6.

shall call thee

thy friends have


the gods have

this people.

The kinsman
him,

all

or the stranger that opposes thy


Indra, drive away; then render this

(king) accepted here

CHARMS PERTAINING TO ROYALTY.

V.

Prayer at the election of a king.

III, 4.

(Thy) kingdom hath come to thee:

1.

dowed with

lustre

Go

forth as

attended and revered be thou here

Thee
shall

five,

All the

king;

the clans, thee these regions, goddesses

choose for empire

Root thyself upon

the height, the pinnacle of royalty


mighty, distribute goods among us

Thy kinsmen

3.

arise, en-

the lord of the

people, rule (shine) thou, a universal ruler


regions of the compass shall call thee,
2.

II3

with calls

then do thou,

shall

come

to thee

go with them as messenger


Thy
sons
shall be devoted to thee
wives, thy
being
a mighty (ruler) thou shalt behold rich tribute

Agni

agile

shall

The

4.
first, Mitra and Varu//a both, all
the gods, and the Maruts, shall call thee
Then fix
mind
the
bestowal of wealth, then do thou,
thy
upon

Aj-vins

mighty, distribute wealth among us


5. Hither hasten forth from the farthest distance
!

heaven and earth, both,

be propitious to thee

shall

Thus

did this king Varu^a (as if,


the chooser ')
decree that
he himself did call thee
come thou
'

'

'

hither
6.

men,

Vanmas
thy

Indra,

for

Indra,

thou
'

(as

if,

come thou

to the

tribes of

hast

agreed, concordant with the


the electors ').
He did call thee to

own domain

'

(thinking)

him revere the

let
'

gods, and manage, too, the people


7. The rich divinities of the roads, of manifold
!

diverse forms, all coming together have


given thee
a broad domain.
shall
all
They
concordantly call
[42]

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

114
thee

rule here, a mighty, benevolent (king),

the tenth decade (of thy

life)

up

to

Praise of an amulet derived from the par#atree, designed to strengthen royal power.

Ill, 5.

1.

with

Hither hath come


its

amulet of par;/a-wood,
might mightily crushing the enemy. (It is)
this

the strength of the gods, the sap of the waters


it assiduously enliven me with energy

may

2.

The power

to rule thou shalt hold fast in me,

amulet of par^a-wood wealth (thou shalt hold


May I, rooted in the domain of royalty,
fast) in me
;

become the

chief!

3. Their very own amulet which the gods deposited secretly in the tree, that the gods shall give

us to wear, together with


4.

The

par/za

life

has come hither as the mighty

strength of the soma, given by Indra, instructed by


Vanma. May I, shining brilliantly, wear it, unto

during a hundred autumns


5. The amulet of par^a-wood has ascended upon
me unto complete exemption from injury, that I may
long

life,

and

rise superior (even) to friends

The

alliances

of chariots, and the ingeof


the
folk about me all, do
nious workers
metal,
6.

thou,
7.

skilful builders

make my aids
The kings who (themselves) make

charioteers,
all,

par;/a,

do thou,

and leaders of

par^a,

kings, the

about

hosts, the folk

make my

aids

me

Thou

art the body-protecting par^a, a hero,


brother of me, the hero. Along with the brilliancy
8.

of the year do

fasten thee on,

amulet

CHARMS PERTAINING TO ROYALTY.

V.

Charm

IV, 22.

I 1

to secure the
superiority of

a king.
1.
This warrior, O Indra, do thou strengthen for
me, do thou install this one as sole ruler (bull) of
the Vis (the people)
emasculate all his enemies,
;

subject them to him in (their) contests


2. To him
apportion his share of villages, horses,
and cattle deprive of his share the one that is his
!

May

enemy!

subject to him,
3.

May

this

king be the pinnacle of royalty

this

Indra, every enemy!


one be the treasure-lord of riches, may

king be the tribal lord of the Vis (the people)


Upon this one, O Indra, bestow great lustre, devoid
of lustre render his enemy
this

4.

For him

ample

May

shall ye,

heaven and

good, as two milch-cows yielding

this

earth, milk

warm

milk

king be favoured of Indra, favoured of

cows, of plants, and cattle


5. I unite with thee Indra
!

whom

through

conquered,

who

who has supremacy,

one conquers and

not (himself)
shall install thee as sole ruler of the
is

people, and as chief of the human kings.


6.

and

Superior

art

whatsoever

thou,

inferior

adversaries

are

are

thy

rivals,

thine,
kine!
Sole ruler, befriended of Indra, victorious, bring
thou hither the supplies of those who act as thy

enemies

Presenting the front of a lion do thou devour


all
(their) people, presenting the front of a tiger do
thou strike down the enemies Sole ruler, befriended
7.

of Indra, victorious, seize upon the


supplies of those
who act as thy enemies
!

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

Il6

Prayer for earthly and heavenly success.

I, 9.

this (person) the

Upon

1.

Vasus, Indra, Piishan,

Varu;za, Mitra, and Agni, shall bestow goods (vasu)


The Adityas, and, further, all the gods shall hold
!

him

in

2.

the higher light

Light, ye

(the sun),
shall

Agni

be our

be at his bidding Surya


Inferior to us
or even gold
Cause him to ascend to the

gods, shall
(fire),

rivals

highest heaven
that
3. With

most potent

charm with which,

6"atavedas (Agni), thou didst bring to Indra the


(soma-) drink, with that, O Agni, do thou here
strengthen this one grant him supremacy over his
;

kinsmen
4. Their sacrifice and their glory, their increase
of wealth and their thoughtful plans, I have usurped,
O Agni. Inferior to us shall be our rivals Cause
him to ascend to the highest heaven
!

VI,
1.

The

Prayer for lustre and power.

2)8-

brilliancy that

and the serpent


(shall be ours)

Indra

come

to us,

is

in

the

the tiger,

lion,

Agni, the Brahma/za, and Surya


May the lovely goddess that bore

in

endowed with

lustre!

(The brilliancy) that is in the elephant, panther,


and in gold in the waters, cattle, and in men (shall
2.

the lovely goddess that bore Indra


come to us, endowed with lustre
3. (The brilliancy) that is in the chariot, the dice,

be ours)

May

in

the strength of the bull in the wind, Par^anya,


in the fire of Varu;/a (shall be ours)
May the

and

CHARMS PERTAINING TO ROYALTY.

V.

come

lovely goddess that bore Indra

with lustre

(The

4.

caste, in

that

brilliancy)

the stretched drum,

Indra,

man

of royal
of the

men

in the
strength

(shall

be ours)

come

Prayer for glory

May the

to us,

endowed

(ya^as).

glory, sped on by
of thousandfold strength, well offered, pre-

oblation that yields

Cause me, that

pared with might, shall prosper!


offers

endowed

VI, 39.

The

to us,

the

in

is

lovely goddess that bore Indra

1.

horse, in the shout of

with lustre

I I

the

continue

to

oblation,

long

beholding

(light), and to rise to supremacy


2. (That he may come) to us, let us honour with
obeisance glory-owning Indra, the glorious one with
!

Do thou (the oblation)


glory-yielding (oblations)
us
on
by Indra; may we in
sovereignty sped
grant
!

thy favour be glorious


3. Glorious was Indra born, glorious Agni, glorious
Soma. Glorious, of all beings the most glorious,
!

am

I.

VIII,

8.

Battle-charm.

1.
May Indra churn (the enemy), he, the churner,
.5akra (mighty), the hero, that pierces the forts, so
that we shall slay the armies of the enemies a

thousandfold
2.

May

the

rotten

rope, wafting itself against


into a stench.
When the

yonder army, turn it


enemies see from afar our smoke and
they lay into their hearts
those
3. Tear asunder

fire,

fear shall

(enemies),

a^vattha

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

Il8

devour (khada) them, O khadira


Like the ta^ad(acacia catechu) in lively style!
bhariga (ricinus communis) they shall be broken
(bha^yantam), may the vadhaka (a certain kind of
(ficus

religiosa),

tree) slay

them with

his

weapons (vadhai/)

knotty ahva-plant put knots upon


yonder (enemies), may the vadhaka slay them with
the

May

4.

his

weapons

they shall

The

5.

Bound up

in

(our)

great

trap-net,

quickly be broken as an arrow-reed


atmosphere was the net, the great regions
!

with
(of space) the (supporting) poles of the net
these .Sakra (mighty Indra) did surround and scatter
:

the

army of the Dasyus.


Great, forsooth, is the net of great 6akra, who
with it infold thou all the enemies,

6.
is

rich in steeds

so that not one of

Great

them

shall

be released

the net of thee, great Indra, hero, that


art equal to a thousand, and hast hundredfold might.
With that (net) akra slew a hundred, thousand,
7.

is

ten thousand, a hundred million foes, having surrounded them with (his) army.
8. This great world was the net of great 6akra
:

with this net of Indra

yonder

infold all those (enemies)

in darkness.

With

great dejection, failure, and irrefragable


with fatigue, lassitude, and confusion,
misfortune
9.

do

surround

To

all

those (enemies) yonder.

I
hand them over, with the
have been bound. To the evil
messengers of death do I lead them captive.
1 1.
Guide ye those (foes), ye messengers of death;
Let more
ye messengers of Yama, infold them
than thousands be slain
the
of Bhava
club
may
crush them

10.

death do

fetters of death they

CHARMS PERTAINING TO ROYALTY.

V.

The Sadhyas

12.

(blessed)

go holding up with
the Rudras another,

might one support of the

net,

the Vasus another.

another

(Still)

I 1

is

upheld by the

Adityas.
13. All the gods shall go pressing from above
the Arigiras shall go on the middle (of
with might
;

the net), slaying the mighty

army

14. The trees, and (growths) that are like trees,


two-footed and
the plants and the herbs as well
four-footed creatures do I impel, that they shall slay
;

yonder army

The Gandharvas and Apsaras,


and the gods, holy men and (deceased)
15.

visible

and

shall slay

invisible (beings),

yonder army

do

the serpents
Fathers, the

impel, that they

Scattered here are the fetters of death when


thou steppest upon them thou shalt not escape
16.

May

this

hammer

the thousand
17.

slay (the

The gharma

been heated by the


thousands

men) of yonder army by

Do

ye,

(sacrificial
fire,

hot drink) that has

this sacrifice

Bhava and

.Sarva,

(shall)

slay

whose arms

are mottled, slay yonder army


18. Into the (snare of) death they shall fall, into
Indra and
hunger, exhaustion, slaughter, and fear
!

do ye with trap and net slay yonder army


19. Conquered, O foes, do ye flee away; repelled
by (our) charm, do ye run! Of yonder host, resaved
pulsed by Brz'haspati, not one shall be
20. May their weapons fall from their (hands),
may they be unable to lay the arrow on (the bow)
!

.Sarva,

And

(our) arrows shall smite them, badly


frightened, in their vital members
21. Heaven and earth shall shriek at them, and

then

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

120

atmosphere, along with the divine powers


Neither aider, nor support did they find
smiting
one another they shall go to death

the

The

four regions are the she-mules of the


god's chariot, the puro^/a^as (sacrificial rice-cakes)
the hoofs, the atmosphere the seat (of the wagon).
22.

Heaven and

earth are

two

its

the seasons

sides,

the reins, the intermediate regions the attendants,


Va/ (speech) the road.

The

the chariot, the full year is the


body of the chariot, Vira^ the pole, Agni the front
Indra is the (combatant) standpart of the chariot.
23.

year

is

ing on the left of the chariot, A'andramas (the


the charioteer.

moon)

Do

thou win here, do thou conquer here,


These here shall conquer,
overcome, win, hail
Hail to these here,
those yonder be conquered
24.

to

perdition

envelop

yonder
blue and red

The

shall not hit us, nor


arrows
hit
us
Far away from
striking
Indra, to either side, cause the arrow-shower

to fall
2.

piercing (arrows)

shall the
us,

Those yonder do

Battle-charm against arrow-wounds.

19.

I,

1.

in

those

To

either side of us the arrows shall

those

fall,

be shot
Ye divine
and ye human arrows, pierce ye mine enemies
3. Be he our own, or be he strange, the kinsman,
or the foreigner, who bear enmity towards us, those
enemies of mine Rudra shall pierce with a shower
that

have been shot and

shall

of arrows
4.

Him

that rivals us, or does not rival us,

him

CHARMS PERTAINING TO ROYALTY.

V.

that curses us with hate,

my charm

protects

the gods injure

all

from within

Battle-charm for confusing the enemy.

i.

Ill,

me

may

12

march against our opponents, burning against their schemes and hostile
Catavedas shall confuse the army of our
plans
opponents and deprive them (of the use) of their
hands
ad2. Ye Maruts are mighty in such matters
vance ye, crush ye, conquer ye (the enemy)
These
Vasus when implored did crush (them).
Agni,
1.

shall skilfully

Agni
;

vanguard shall skilfully attack


3.
Maghavan, the hostile army which contends
do ye, O Indra, VWtra's slayer, and
against us
burn
Agni,
against them
4. Thy thunderbolt, O Indra, who hast been
driven forward swiftly by thy two bay steeds,

verily, as their

shall

advance, crushing

that resist, pursue, or


fulfilment

the

Slay them

enemies.

schemes of

flee, deprive their

5.

enemy; with
and the wind scatter them to

Indra, confuse the

the impact of the


either side

fire

army of

the

Indra shall confuse the army, the Maruts shall


with might
slay
Agni shall rob it of its sight
vanquished it shall turn about
6.

it

Ill, 2.
1.

Battle-charm for confusing the enemy.

Agni, our

skilful

vanguard, shall attack, burn-

c7ataing against their schemes and hostile plans


vedas shall bewilder the plans of the enemy, and
deprive them (of the use) of their hands
!

2.

This

fire

has confused the schemes that are

in

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

122

blow you from your home, blow


you away from everywhere

your mind

shall

it

3.

Indra,

bewildering

schemes, come
with the impact of the
their

hither with thy (own) plan


fire and the wind scatter them to either side
:

O ye schemes,
4. O ye plans of theirs, fly ye away
what
is in their
now
be ye confused
Moreover,
mind, do thou drive that out of them
;

Do

(goddess) Apva, confusing their


plans, go forth (to them), and seize their limbs!
Attack them, burn with flames into their hearts
strike the enemy with fits, (strike our) opponents
5.

thou,

with darkness

That army yonder of the enemy,

6.

comes

that

Maruts,
against us fighting with might, do ye,
strike with planless darkness, that one of them shall
not

know

the other

VI, 97.

Battle-charm of a king upon the eve of


battle.

the sacrifice, superior Agni, superior


Soma, superior Indra. To the end that I shall be
1.

Superior

is

superior to all hostile armies do we thus, offering


the agnihotra, reverently present this oblation
!

Hail be, ye wise Mitra and Varu/^a


with
honey swell ye our kingdom here, (so that it shall)
abound in offspring
Drive far to a distance mis2.

fortune, strip off

committed
3.

cling

from us

sin,

even after

it

has been

With

inspiration follow ye this strong hero


close, ye friends, to Indra (the king), who

conquers villages, conquers cattle, has the thunderbolt in his arm, overcomes the host arrayed (against
him), crushing

it

with might

CHARMS PERTAINING TO ROYALTY.

Battle-charm of a king on the eve of

VI, 99.

battle.
1.

call

upon

thee,

Indra, from afar,

for protection against tribulation.

avenger that has many names, and


birth.
2.

call

is

upon thee
the strong-

of unequalled

Where

weapon now rises against us,


there do we place the two arms

the hostile

threatening to slay,
of Indra round about.

of Indra, the protector, do we


O god
let him protect us
place round about us
of
confident
me
Savitar, and king Soma, render
3.

The two arms

mind, that

XI,

may

prosper

Prayer to Arbudi and Nyarbudi for help

9.

in battle.

The

arms, the arrows, and the might of the


the
bows;
swords, the axes, the weapons, and the
artful scheme that is in our mind; all that,
Arbudi,
1.

do thou make the enemies

make them
2.

Arise,

see

see,

and spectres also

and arm yourselves

friends are ye,

and
Arbudi
protected by you,
(and Nyarbudi)
With fetters
3. Arise (ye two), and take hold
and shackles surround ye the armies of the enemy,
O Arbudi (and Nyarbudi)
4. The god whose name is Arbudi, and the lord
Nyarbudi, by whom the atmosphere and this great
earth has been infolded, with these two companions
of Indra do I pursue the conquered (king) with my

divine

folk!

May

our friends be perceived

army.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

124

Arise, thou divine person,


Arbudi, together
with thy army
the
army of the enemy,
Crushing
5.

encompass them with thy embraces


6. Thou, Arbudi, makest
appear the sevenfold
!

spectral brood.

been poured,
the

army

7.

Do

rise

when

thou,

up with

all

the oblation

has

these, together with

(The female mourner), beating

herself,

with

tear-stained face, with short (mutilated ?) ears, with


dishevelled hair, shall lament, when a man has been

Arbudi
pierced by thee,
8. She curves her spine while longing in her
heart for her son, her husband, and her kin, when

slain,

man) has been pierced by thee, O Arbudi


9. The aliklavas and the ^ashkamadas, the vultures, the strong-winged hawks, the crows, and the
birds (of prey) shall obtain their fill
Let them
make evident to the enemy, when (a man) has been
pierced by thee, O Arbudi
10. Then, too, every wild beast, insect, and worm
shall obtain his fill on the human carcass, when
(a man) has been pierced by thee, O Arbudi
11. Seize ye, and tear out in-breathing and out(a

Nyarbudi (and Arbudi): deep-sounding


Let them make it evident to
the enemy, when (a man) has been pierced by thee,
O Arbudi
12'. Scare them forth, let them tremble; bewilder
the enemies with fright
With thy broad embrace,
with the clasp of thy arms crush the enemies, O

breathing,

groans shall arise

Nyarbudi
13.

May

in their

their arms,

and the

mind be confused

of them, pierced by thee,

artful

scheme that

Not a thing
Arbudi

shall

is

remain

CHARMS PERTAINING TO ROYALTY.

V.

25

(the mourning women) beating themrun


selves,
together, smiting their breasts and their
thighs, not anointed, with dishevelled hair, howling,
when a man has been slain, has been pierced by
14.

thee,

May

Arbudi

The

dog-like Apsaras, and also the Rupakas


(phantoms), the plucking sprite, that eagerly licks
within the vessel, and her that seeks out what has
15.

been carelessly hidden, all those do thou, O Arbudi,


make the enemies see, and spectres also make

them see
16.

also

(And

upon the

make them

see) her that strides

mist, the mutilated one,

the mutilated

who

dwells with

the vapoury spooks that are hidden,


and the Gandharvas and Apsaras, the serpents, and
;

other brood, and the Rakshas


17. (And also) the spooks with fourfold
!

teeth,

black teeth, testicles like a pot, bloody faces,


are inherently frightful, and terrifying

who

18.

Frighten thou,

Arbudi, yonder lines of the

enemy the conquering and the victorious (Arbudi


and Nyarbudi), the two comrades of Indra, shall
conquer the enemies
;

19. Dissolved, crushed, slain the

enemy

shall

lie,

Nyarbudi
May victorious sprites, with fiery
and
smoky crests, go with (our) army
tongues
20. Of the enemies repulsed by this (army), O
!

Arbudi, Indra, the spouse of Sa&l, shall slay each


picked man not a single one of those yonder shall
:

escape
21.

May

their hearts burst,

may

their

life's

breath

escape upward
May dryness of the mouth overtake (our) enemies, but not (our) allies
!

22.

Those

who

are

bold

and those who are

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

126

cowardly, those who turn (in


are deaf (to danger ?), those

and those who

flight)

who

are (like) dark

and those, too, who bleat like goats, all those,


do thou, O Arbudi, make the enemies see, and
spectres also make them see
23. Arbudi and Trishawdhi shall
pierce our

goats,

enemies, so that, O Indra, slayer of VWtra, spouse


of Sa&i, we may slay the enemy by thousands
!

24. The trees, and (growths) that are like trees,


the plants and the herbs as well, the Gandharvas
and the Apsaras, the serpents, gods, pious men, and
Arbudi, do thou
(departed) Fathers, all those,
make the enemies see, and spectres also make

them see

The

Maruts, god Aditya, Brahma^aspati did


rule over you
Indra and Agni, Dhatar, Mitra, and
Pra^apati did rule over you the seers did rule over
25.

Let them make evident to the enemies when


you.
(a man) has been pierced by thee, O Arbudi
26. Ruling over all these, rise ye and arm your!

selves

Ye

divine folk are (our) friends

win ye

the battle, and disperse to your various abodes

XI,

10.

Prayer to Trishawdhi for help

in

battle.

Arise and arm yourselves, ye nebulous spectres


together with fiery portents
ye serpents, other
1.

brood, and Rakshas, run ye after the


2.

He knows how

to rule

enemy
your kingdom together
!

with the red portents (of the heavens).


The evil
brood that is in the air and the heaven, and the
human (powers) upon the earth, shall be obedient to
the plans of Trishawdhi

CHARMS PERTAINING TO ROYALTY.

V.

3.

The brazen-beaked

27

(birds of prey), those with

beaks pointed as a needle, and those, too, with


thorny beaks, flesh-devouring, swift as the wind,
shall fasten themselves upon the enemies, together
with the Trishawdhi-bolt (the bolt with three
joints)
4.

Make away

carcasses

with,

c7atavedas Aditya,

This army of Trishawdhi

many
be de-

shall

voted to my bidding
divine person, O Arbudi, together
5. Arise thou
This tribute has been offered to
with thy army
you (Arbudi and Trishawdhi), an offering pleasing
!

to Trishawdhi.
6.

fetter

This

white-footed,

four-footed

arrow

shall

Do thou, O

magic spell, operate, together


of
Trishawdhi,
against the enemies
army
with suffused eyes
7. May (the mourning woman)
hurry on, may she that hath short (mutilated ?) ears
(?).

with the

man) has been overcome by the army


Red portents shall be (visible)
of Trishawdhi
8. May the winged birds that move in the air and
beasts of prey and insects shall
in the sky descend
vultures that feed upon raw
the
seize upon them
flesh shall hack into (their) carcasses
Brz9. By virtue of the compact which thou, O
haspati, didst close with Indra and Brahman, by
virtue of that agreement with Indra, do I call
shout

when

(a

hither

all

yonder

the gods

on

this side conquer, not

over

Brzhaspati, the descendant of Aiigiras, and


the seers, inspired by (our) song, did fix the three10.

jointed (Trisha/zzdhi) weapon


destruction of the Asuras.

upon the sky

for the
A

11.

Trishawdhi, by

whom

both yonder Aditya

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEUA.

128

(the sun) and Indra are protected,


destine for (our) might and strength.
12.

did

the gods

All the worlds the gods did conquer through


(and) by the bolt which Br/haspati,

this oblation,

the descendant of Ahgiras, did mould into a


for the destruction of the Asuras.
1

3.

With

the bolt which Brz'haspati, the descendant


weapon for the destruc-

of Arigiras, did mould into a


tion of the Asuras do I,

yonder army
14. All

with the

15.
is

Brz'haspati, annihilate

smite the enemies with force.

gods that eat the oblation offered


vasha/ are coming over.
Receive this

the

call

oblation graciously

yonder

weapon

conquer on

this side, not

over

May

pleasing

all

the gods

come over: the oblation


Adhere to the great

to Trishawzdhi.

compact under which of yore the Asuras were


conquered
16. Vayu (the wind) shall bend the points of the
enemies' bows, Indra shall break their arms, so that
A
they shall be unable to lay on their arrows, Aditya
(the sun) shall send their missiles astray, and A"an!

dramas (the moon) shall bar the way of (the enemy)


that has not (as yet) started
17. If they have come on as citadels of the gods,
!

they have constituted an inspired charm as their


armour, if they have gathered courage through the
protections for the body and the bulwarks which
if

they have made, render

all

that devoid of force

Placing (our) purohita (chaplain), together with


the flesh-devourer (Agni) and death, in thy train, do
1

8.

thou,

Trishawdhi, go forth with thy army, conquer

the enemies, advance


19.

Trisha;;/dhi, envelop thou the

enemies

in

CHARMS PERTAINING TO ROYALTY.

V.

darkness

may

29

not a single one of those, driven

by the speckled ghee, be saved


20. May the white-footed (arrow ?)

forth

of the

lines

fly to

yonder

armies of

enemy, may yonder

the

enemies be to-day put to confusion, O Nyarbudi


21. The enemies have been confused, O Nyar!

budi

slay each picked

with this

army

man among

them, slay them

The enemy

with coat-of-mail, he that has no


coat-of-mail, and he that stands in the battle-throng,
throttled by the strings of their bows, by the fasten22.

ings of their coats-of-mail, by the battle-throng, they


shall lie

Those with armour and those without armour,

23.

the enemies that are shielded by armour,

Arbudi, after they have been

devour upon the ground

slain,

all

dogs

those,
shall

and those that


have no chariots, those that are mounted, and those
that are not mounted, all those, after they have
been slain, vultures and strong-winged hawks shall
devour
25. Counting its dead by thousands, the hostile
army, pierced and shattered in the clash of arms,

Those

24.

that ride on chariots,

shall lie

Pierced in a vital spot, shrieking in concert


with the birds of prey, wretched, crushed, prostrate,
26.

birds of prey)

(the

devour the enemy who

shall

attempts to hinder this oblation of ours directed


against (him)
27.

which

With
is

(the oblation) to which the gods flock,


free from failure, with it Indra, the slayer

of Wz'tra, shall slay, and with the Trisharadhi-bolt


(the bolt with three joints)
!

[42]

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

13O

Hymn

V, 20.
1.

to the battle-drum.

High sounds the voice of the drum, that acts


wooden (drum), equipped with the

the warrior, the


skin of the cow.

Whetting thy

enemy,
thunder against them

subduing the
do thou loudly

voice,

like a lion sure of victory,


!

The wooden

(instrument) with fastened (covering) has thundered as a lion, as a bull roars to the
cow that longs to mate.
Thou art a bull, thy
2.

enemies are eunuchs


fire

thou

ownest

Indra's

foe-

subduing
3. Like a bull
!

in the herd, full of might, lusty, do


snatcher
of booty, roar against them
thou,
Pierce with fire the heart of the enemy
with

broken ranks the foe


4.

In

victorious

shall

run and scatter

battles

raise

What

thy roar!

may be captured, capture sound in many places


Favour, O drum, (our deeds) with thy divine voice
;

bring to

enemy
5.

(us) with

strength

the

property of the

When

the wife of the

enemy hears

the voice of

the drum, that speaks to a far distance, may she,


aroused by the sound, distressed, snatch her son
to her arms,

arms

and

run,

frightened at the clash of

O drum, sound the first sound, ring


the back of the earth
over
brilliantly
Open wide
maw
at
the
enemies
host
resound
thy
brightly,
6.

Do

thou,

joyously,

drum

Between

this heaven and earth thy noise shall


sounds
shall quickly part to every side
spread, thy
Shout thou and thunder with swelling sound make
7.

CHARMS PERTAINING TO ROYALTV.

V.

131

music at thy friend's victory, having (chosen) the

good

side

Manipulated with care,

8.

Make

bristle

forth

its

voice shall resound

the weapons of the warriors


call hither the warriors

Indra do thou

Allied to

with thy friends beat vigorously down the enemies


9.
shouting herald, followed by a bold army,
!

spreading news in

many

places,

sounding through

the village, eager for success, knowing the way, do


thou distribute glory to many in the battle
!

10.

full

Desiring advantage, gaining booty,


mighty,
thou hast been made keen by (my) song, and
winnest battles.
As the press-stone on the gathering skin dances upon the soma-shoots, thus do thou,
drum, lustily dance upon the booty

conqueror of enemies, overwhelming, foesubduing, eager for the fray, victoriously crushing,
as a speaker his speech do thou carry forth thy
11.

sound
battle

sound forth here strength

for victory

in

Shaking those that are unshaken, hurrying to


the strife, a conqueror of enemies, an unconquerable
leader, protected by Indra, attending to the hosts,
do thou that crusheth the hearts of the enemies,
12.

quickly go

V,

21.

Hymn

to the battle-drum, the terror


of the enemy.

Carry with thy voice, O drum, lack of heart,


and failure of courage among- the enemies
Disand
we
the
do
into
agreement, dismay,
place
fright,
enemies beat them down, O drum
1.

2.

Agitated

in

their

minds,

their

sight,

their

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

32

enemies shall run, frightened with terror,


oblation has been offered

hearts, the

when our

Made of wood, equipped with the skin of


at home with every clan, put thou with

3.

cow,
voice terror into the enemies,
anointed with ghee

when thou

the

thy
hast been

As

4.

the wild animals of the forest start in fear

from man, thus do thou,

drum, shout against the


enemies, frighten them away, and bewilder their
minds
5. As goats and sheep run from the wolf, badly
frightened, thus do thou, O drum, shout against the
enemies, frighten them away, and bewilder their
!

minds

As birds start in fear from the eagle, as by


and
day
by night (they start) at the roar of the
lion, thus do thou, O drum, shout against the
enemies, frighten them away, and bewilder their
minds
7. With the drum and the skin of the antelope
all the gods, that sway the battle, have scared
away
6.

the enemies.

At

8.

the noise of the beat of the

disports himself, and


enemies yonder, that come

Indra

shall

tremble

feet

when

shadow, our

at

his

in

successive

ranks,

The

whirring of the bowstring and the drums


shout at the directions where the conquered
armies of the enemies go in successive ranks
9.

shall

10.

after

them

gone
1

1.

clinging

to

upon them, when

selves
is

sun, take away their sight;

rays, run

their feet, fasten yourthe strength of their arms

Ye

strong Maruts, Prisms children, with Indra

V.

CHARMS PERTAINING TO ROYALTY.

as an ally, crush ye the enemies


(shall crush them), Varuwa the king,
;

Soma

33

the king

Mahadeva, and

and Indra!
These wise armies of the gods, having the

also Mrz'tyu (death),


12.

sun as their
Hail!

ensign, shall conquer

our enemies

VI.

CHARMS TO SECURE HARMONY, INFLUENCE


THE ASSEMBLY, AND THE LIKE

IN

(SAJ/MANASYANI, ETC.).
Ill, 30.

Charm

to secure

harmony.

Unity of heart, and unity of mind, freedom from


Do ye take delight
hatred, do I procure for you.
in one another, as a cow in her (new-) born calf!
2. The son shall be devoted to his father, be of
the same mind with his mother the wife shall speak
honied, sweet, words to her husband
3. The brother shall not hate the brother, and the
sister not the sister!
Harmonious, devoted to the
same purpose, speak ye words in kindly spirit
4. That charm which causes the gods not to disagree, and not to hate one another, that do we
1.

prepare

your
5.

in

your house, as a means of agreement for

folk.

Following your leader, of (the same) mind, do

Do

ye not hold yourselves apart!


co-operating, going along the
of the
6.

same wagon-pole,

one another

speaking agreeably to

ye come here,

render you

same aim, of the same mind.

Identical shall be your drink, in

common

shall

be your share of food


I
yoke you together in the
same traces do ye worship Agni, joining together,
as spokes around about the hub
render you of the same aim, of the same
7. I
!

CHARMS TO SECURE HARMONY,

VI.

ETC.

35

paying deference to one (person) through


harmonising charm. Like the gods that are

mind,

my

all

guarding the ambrosia, may he (the leader) be welldisposed towards you, night and day
!

VI, 73.
1.

Charm

to allay discord.

Hither shall come Varuwa, Soma, Agni

come

haspati with the Vasus shall

together,
glory of this

The

hither

Brz-

Come

ye kinsmen all, of one mind,


mighty guardian

to the

within your souls, the scheme


that hath entered your minds, do I frustrate with my
2.

that

fire

oblation, with

kinsmen

my

is

ghee: delight in

me

shall

ye take,

Remain

(the
right here, go not away from us
shall
make
a
at
distance
Pushan
impassable
roads)
3.

for

you

Vastoshpati shall urgently

delight in

me

VI,
1.

May

shall ye take,

74.

Charm

call

kinsmen

you back

to allay discord.

your bodies be united,

may your minds

and your purposes (be united)


Brahma;^aspati here
has brought you together, Bhaga has brought you
!

together.
2.

Harmony

harmony

of

of

mind (I procure) for you, and also


Moreover with the aid of

heart.

Bhaga's exertions do I cause you to agree.


are united with the Vasus, as
3. As the Adityas
the fierce (Rudras), free from grudge, with the
Maruts, thus, O three-named (Agni), without grudge,
do thou render these people here of the same

mind!

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

136

VII, 52.
1.

Charm

May we

be

against strife and bloodshed.

in

harmony with our

harmony with strangers


here agreement

among

do

us

ye,

in

kinfolk,

A.svins, establish

May we

agree in mind and thought, may we


not struggle with one another, in a spirit displeasing
to the gods
May not the din of frequent battle2.

may the arrow not


carnage
has
of Indra
arrived!
arise,

Charm

VI, 64.
1.

be

in

Do

fly

when

the day

to allay discord.

ye agree, unite yourselves,

may your minds

harmony, just as the gods of old in

harmony
down to their share
2. Same be their counsel, same their
assembly,
same their aim, in common their thought
The
same oblation do I sacrifice for you do ye enter
upon the same plan
3. Same be your intention, same your hearts
Same be your mind, so that it may be perfectly in

sat

'

'

common

to

you

Charm

VI, 42.

to

appease anger.

As

the bowstring from the bow, thus do I take


anger from thy heart, so that, having become
of the same mind, we shall associate like friends
1.

off thy

2.

Like friends we shall associate

anger.

Under

a stone that

is

take off thy

heavy do we

cast

thy anger.
3.

step upon thy anger with

fore-foot, so that, bereft of will,

shalt

come up

to

my

wish

my

heel and

my

thou shalt not speak,

CHARMS TO SECURE HARMONY,

VI.

Charm

VI, 43.

ETC.

37

to appease anger.

This darbha-orass removes the an^er of both


kinsman and of stranger.
And this remover of
1.

'

'

appeaser of wrath
This darbha-grass of

wrath,
2.

down
'

into the ocean,

appeaser of wrath
3.

Away we
away (the

jaw,
bereft of
to

my

will,

wish

called.

many

roots, that reaches

risen

having

from the earth,

'

it is

called.

take the offensiveness that

is

in thy

offensiveness) in thy mouth, so that,


thou shalt not speak, shalt come up

Charm

against opponents in debate,


undertaken with the pa/a-plant.

II, 27.

1.

it is

May

the

enemy not win

the debate

Thou

art

Overcome the debate


mighty and overpowering.
of those that debate against us, render them devoid
of force, O plant
!

An

boar dug thee out


with his snout.
Overcome the debate of those
that debate against us, render them devoid of force,
2.

plant

eagle found thee

out, a

3. Indra placed thee upon his arm in order to


overthrow the Asuras.
Overcome the debate of

those that debate against us, render them devoid


of force,
plant

4. Indra did eat the pa/a-plant, in order to overthrow the Asuras. Overcome the debate of those

that debate against us, render

them devoid of

force,

plant!
5.

By means

of thee

shall

conquer the enemy,

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

138

as Indra (conquered) the Salavr/kas.


Overcome
the debate of those that debate against us, render
them devoid of force,
plant

6.

Rudra, whose remedy

the urine, with

is

black crest of hair, performer of (strong) deeds


overcome thou the debate of those that debate

them devoid of force, O


Overcome thou the debate of him

against us, render


7.

is

us, O Indra
Encourage us with thy
Render me superior in debate

hostile

might

plant
that

to
!

VII,

12.

Charm

to procure influence in the

assembly.
1.
May assembly and meeting, the two daughters
of Pra^apati, concurrently aid me
May he with
whom I shall meet co-operate with me may I, O ye
!

Fathers, speak

assembled

agreeably to those

We

know thy name, O assembly


mirth,'
name
that
sit
assemall
those
verily,
thy
may
bled in thee utter speech in harmony with me
3. Of them that are sitting together I take to
2.

'

is

myself the power and the understanding


entire gathering render,
4.

If

Indra,

me

your mind has wandered

in this

successful!

to a distance, or

has been enchained here or there, then do we turn


it hither
may your mind take delight in me
:

VI, 94.

Charm

to bring

about submission to

one's will.
t. Your minds,
your purposes, your plans, do we
cause to bend. Ye persons yonder, that are devoted

we cause you to comply


With my mind do I seize your minds

to other purposes,
2.

do ye

VI.

CHARMS TO SECURE HARMONY,

ETC.

39

I
with your thoughts follow my thought
place
in
hearts
control
come
your
my
ye, directing your
!

way

after

my

course

have called upon heaven and earth, I have


3.
called upon the goddess Sarasvati, I have called
upon both Indra and Agni may we succeed in this,
I

Sarasvati

VII.

CHARMS TO SECURE PROSPERITY

IN HOUSE, FIELD,

GAMBLING, AND KINDRED

CATTLE, BUSINESS,

MATTERS.
Ill, 12.
i.

Prayer at the building of a house.

Right here do

erect a firm house

may

it

stand upon a (good) foundation, dripping with ghee


Thee may we inhabit, O house, with heroes all,
with strong heroes, with uninjured heroes
!

house, stand firmly,


Right here, do thou,
Full
of horses, full of cattle, full of abundance
of sap, full of ghee, full of milk, elevate thyself unto
2.

full

great happiness
3.

supporter art thou,

roof, containing purified grain

calf

come, to thee the

house, with broad


To thee may the

child, to thee the milch-cows,

when they

return in the evening


4. May Savitar, Vayu, Indra, EWhaspati cunningly
erect this house
May the Maruts sprinkle it with
!

moisture and with ghee


ploughing take root

may king Bhaga

let

our

5.

mistress

of dwelling, as a sheltering and

kindly goddess thou wast erected by the gods in


the beginning clothed in grass, be thou kindly dis;

moreover, wealth along with heroes


6. Do thou, O cross-beam,
according to regulation
ascend the post, do thou, mightily ruling, hold off

posed

give

the enemies

us,

May

they that approach thee rever-

CHARMS TO SECURE PROSPERITY.

VII.

ently,

house, not suffer injury,

may we

with

all

our heroes live a hundred autumns


hath come the tender
7. Hither to this (house)
with
the
hither
calf
child,
along
(the other) domestic
!

animals

hither the vessel

with bowls of sour milk


8.

forth,

Carry

of liquor, together

(full)

woman,

this

full jar,

a stream

Do thou these
of ghee mixed with ambrosia
the sacrifice and
drinkers supply with ambrosia
the gifts (to the Brahmans) shall it (the house)
!

protect

from disease, destructive of


The chambers do I enter
disease, do I carry forth.
in upon together with the immortal Agni (fire).
9.

These waters,

Blessing during the sowing of seed.

VI, 142.

Raise thyself up, grow thick by thy own might,


The lightning in the
Burst every vessel
grain
1

free

heavens
2.

shall not destroy thee

When we

invoke thee, god grain, and thou

dost listen, then do thou raise thyself up like the


sky, be inexhaustible as the sea
!

3.

Inexhaustible

shall

thee, inexhaustible thy


as a present shall be

be those

heaps

that

attend to

They who

give thee

inexhaustible, they
thee shall be inexhaustible

who

eat

VI,
1.

the

79.

Charm

May

this

cloud)

measure
2.

Do

in

for procuring increase of grain.

bounteous Nabhasaspati (the lord of

preserve for us
our house

thou,

(possessions)

without

Nabhasaspati, keep strengthening

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

142

food in our house,


hither

prosperity and goods

may

come

bounteous god, thou dost command thousandfold prosperity


of that do thou bestow upon
3.

may we

us, of that do thou give us, in that

with thee

VI, 50.

Exorcism of vermin
the

1.

share

Slay ye the

infesting grain in

field.

tarda

and the mole,


and
crush their ribs
heads,
('hook'),

('borer'),
A.svins

Shut

they shall not eat the barley


the grain from danger
Ho tarda (' borer '), ho
2.

the

samanka

cut off their

their mouths, that

free ye, moreover,

('

snapper'), upakvasa

uncompleted

sacrifice,

As
do

ho ^abhya

locust,

Brahman

(eats not)

an

ye, not eating this barley,

without working injury, get out


3. O husband of the tarda (-female),
!

husband

of the vagha (-female), ye of the sharp teeth, listen


to me
The vyadvaras (' rodents ') of the forest,
!

and whatever other vyadvaras (there


we do crush.
VII,

11.

Charm

to protect grain

are), all

these

from lightning.

With thy broad thunder, with the beacon, elevated


by the gods that pervade this all, with the lightning
do thou not destroy our grain, O god nor do thou
;

destroy

it

II, 26.
1.

with the rays of the sun

Charm

for the prosperity of cattle.

come the cattle which have


a distance, whose companionship Vayu

Hither shall

strayed to

CHARMS TO SECURE PROSPERITY.

VII.

(the wind) enjoys

(The

cattle)

form Tvash/ar knows, Savitar

43

whose structure of

shall hold in place in

this stable!

To

2.

BWhaspati
Sinivali

stable the cattle shall flow together,


conduct them hither
skilfully shall

this

conduct hither their van

shall

Anumati, hold them

arrived

in

place

after

do thou,
they have

the cattle, may the horses, and may the


domestics flow together
may the increase of the

May

3.

I
sacrifice with an oblation
grain flow together
that causeth to flow together
!

pour together the milk of the cows, I pour


^together strength and sap with the ghee. Poured
together shall be our heroes, constant shall be the
cows with me the owner of the cows
I

4.

5.
bring hither the milk of the cows, I have
brought hither the sap of the grain.
Brought
hither are our heroes, brought hither to this house
I

are our wives


Ill, 14.

Charm

for the prosperity of cattle.

With a

firmly founded stable, with wealth, with


well-being, with the name of that which is born on
a lucky day do we unite you (O cattle)
1.

May Aryaman

2.

unite you,

Pushan, Brt-

may

haspati, and Indra, the conqueror of booty, unite


Do ye prosper my possessions
you
!

3.

Flocking together without

in this stable,

holding honey

disease, ye shall

come

hither

fit

fear,

for

making ordure

soma, free from

Right here come, ye cows, and prosper here


And right here do ye beget
(your young)
May ye be in accord with me
4.

like

the ^aka-bird
!

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

144
5.

May

your stable be auspicious to you, prosper

.sari-birds and parrots


And right
ye
With us do we
here do ye beget (your young)

like

the

unite you.

O cows, to me as your poshere


cause you to prosper
may
Upon you, growing numerous, and living, may we,
increasing in wealth, alive, attend
6.

Attach yourselves,

sessor

this stable

VI,

Prayer to the plant arundhati for pro-

59.

tection to cattle.
1. Thy foremost protection, O Arundhati, do thou
bestow upon steer and milch-kine, upon (cattle of)
the age when weaned from their mother, upon (all)

four-footed creatures

Arundhati, the herb, bestow protection


with
the gods, render full of sap the stable,
along
free from disease our men
2.

May

3.
I

The

invoke.

variegated, lovely, life-giving (plant) do


May she carry away for us, far from the

hurled by Rudra

cattle, the missile

VI,

70.

Charm

to secure the attachment of a

cow

to her calf.

As

meat, and liquor, and dice (abound) at the


gambling-place, as the heart of the lusty male
hankers after the woman, thus shall thy heart, O
1.

cow, hanker after the calf!


2. As the
elephant directs

his steps after the


of
the
as
the
heart
of the lusty male
female,
steps
hankers after the woman, thus shall thy heart,
cow, hanker after the calf!

3.

As

the felloe, and as the spokes, and as the

CHARMS TO SECURE PROSPERITY.

VII.

nave

wheel

(of the

45

joined) to the felloe, as the


heart of the lusty male hankers after the woman,
thus shall thy heart,
cow, hanker after the calf!
is

Formula

Ill, 28.

in

expiation of the birth of

twin-calves.

Through one creation at a time this (cow) was


born, when the fashioners of the beings did create
the cows of many colours.
(Therefore), when a
cow doth beget twins portentously, growling and
1.

cross she injureth the cattle.

This (cow) doth injure our cattle a flesh-eater,


Hence to a Brahman
devourer, she hath become.
he shall give her; in this way she may be kindly
and auspicious
2.

3. Auspicious be to (our) men, auspicious to (our)


cows and horses, auspicious to this entire field,
auspicious be to us right here
Be thou
4. Here be prosperity, here be sap
here one that especially gives a thousandfold
!

Make the cattle prosper, thou mother of twins


5. Where our pious friends live joyously, having
!

behind the ailments of their bodies, to that


world the mother of twins did attain may she not

left

men and our cattle


Where is the world of our

injure our

pious friends, where


them that sacrifice with the agnihotra,
to that world the mother of twins did attain
may
she not injure our men and our cattle
6.

the world of

VI, 92.
1.

Charm

Swift

as

to

the

endow

a horse with swiftness.

wind be thou,

steed,

when

joined (to the chariot); at Indra's urging go, fleet as


L
[42]

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

146

mind

The

Maruts, the all-possessing, shall harness thee,Tvash/ar shall put fleetness into thy feet!
2. With the fleetness, O runner, that has been
the

deposited in thee in a secret place, (with the fleetness)


that has been made over to the eagle, the wind, and

them, with that, O steed, strong with


strength, do thou win the race, reaching the goal in

moves

in

the contest
3.

Thy

body,

body, shall

steed, leading (our)

to

to

ourselves, delight
pleasure
thyself!
of
not
the
the
for
support
stumbling,
great,
god,
he shall, as if upon the heaven, found his own light!
run,

Charm

Ill, 13.

for conducting a river into a

new

channel.

Because of yore, when the (cloud-) serpent was


slain (by Indra), ye did rush forth and shout (anashouters
(nadya//
data), therefore is your name
rivers ')
that is your designation, ye streams
2. Because, when sent forth by Varu/za, ye then
quickly did bubble up; then Indra met (apnot) you,
as ye went, therefore anon are ye meeters (apa/2
1

'

'

'

'

'

'

waters

')

When

reluctantly ye flowed, Indra, forsooth,


did with might choose (avivarata) you as his own,
3.

'

'

Therefore choice (var water ') has


ye goddesses
been given you as your name
4. One god stood upon you, as ye flowed accordUp breathed (ud anishu/z) they who
ing to will.
Therefore upare known as 'the great' (mahi//).
'

'

'

breather
5.

ghee.

The

'

(udakam water ') are they

called

waters are kindly, the waters in truth were

These

waters,

truly,

do support Agni and

CHARMS TO SECURE PROSPERITY.

VII.

Soma.

47

the readily flowing, strong sap of the


honey-dripping (waters) come to me, together with

May

breath and lustre

life's

Then do

6.

see

them and

their sound, their voice doth

also

do

come

to

hear them

When,

me.

ye golden-coloured, I have refreshed myself with


you, then I ween, ambrosia (amr/ta) am I tasting
!

7.

calf,

this

Here, ye waters,
ye righteous ones

way

VI, 106.

by which

here,

Charm

your heart, here

is

your

Come ye, mighty ones, by


am conducting you here
!

ward

to

is

off

danger from

fire.

Where thou

comest, (O fire), and where thou


the
goest away,
blooming durva-plant shall grow
a well-spring there shall rise up, or a lotus-laden pool
1.

Here

(shall be) the gathering place of the


In the
waters, here the dwelling-place of the sea!
midst of a pond our house shall be turn, (O fire),
2.

away thy jaws


3. With a covering of coolness do we envelop
cool as a pond be thou for us Agni
thee, O house
shall furnish the remedy
!

IV,

3.

Shepherd's charm against wild beasts and


robbers.

Three have gone away from here, the tiger,


man, and wolf. Out of sight, forsooth, go the
1.

out

of sight (grows) the divine tree (the


banyan-tree ?) out of sight the enemies shall retreat
2. The wolf shall tread a distant
path, and the
rivers,

robber one

more

On

a distant path
shall move the biting rope (the
serpent), on a distant
the
evil
of
path
plotter
still

distant!

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

148

we

eyes and thy jaw

Thy

3.

crush,

tiger,

and

also all thy twenty claws.


4.

We

5.

The

crush the tiger, the foremost of animals,


armed with teeth. Next, too, the thief, and then
the serpent, the wizard, and also the wolf.
thief that approacheth to-day, crushed to

Where

pieces he goeth away.

he

pitate
bolt

Indra

shall go,

the paths are precihim with his

shall slay

6.

The

teeth of the wild beast are dulled,

broken are his


shall

beast
7.

down

go,

Out of thy

ribs.

tumble

shall

and

sight the dragon

the

hare-hunting

The

(jaw,

thou shuttest together,


that which thou openest up,

beast,) that

thou shalt not open up


Born of Indra, born
thou shalt not shut together!
of Soma, thou, (my charm), art Atharvan's crusher
;

of tigers.

Ill, 15.
1.

merchant's prayer.

Indra, the merchant, do

summon: may he

come to us, may he be our van driving away the


demon of grudge, the waylayers, and wild beasts,
;

may
2.

he, the possessor,

May

which

the

many

me

me

milk and ghee, so that


wealth from my purchases

gladden

offer

strength

paths, the roads of the gods,

come together between heaven and


with

gather in
3. Desirous do

ghee

bestow wealth upon

earth,
I

may

Agni, with firewood

and
and

I,

oblations

(to

thee),

for

success

according to ability praising (thee) with

prayer, do I sing this divine song, that


gain a hundredfold

my

may

4.

(Pardon,

Agni,

this

sin

of ours [incurred

CHARMS TO SECURE PROSPERITY.

VII.

49

upon] the far road which we have travelled !)


May
our purchases and our sales be successful for us
may what I get in barter render me a gainer May
;

ye two (Indra and Agni) in accord take pleasure in


this oblation
May our transactions and the accru!

ing gain be auspicious

The

5.

to us

wealth with which

go

to purchase, de-

siring, ye gods, to gain wealth through wealth, may


that grow more, not less
Drive away,
Agni, in

return for the oblation, the gods who shut off gain
6. The wealth with which I go to purchase, de!

siring,

ye gods, to gain wealth through wealth,

Indra, Pra^apati, Savitar,


into

it

me

for

Soma, Agni, place

may

lustre

We

7.
praise with reverence thee,
priest (Agni)
Vai.svanara.
Do thou over our children, selves,

cattle,

and

life's

breath watch

Daily, never failing, shall we bring (oblations to


thee), O Catavedas, (as if fodder) to a horse standIn growth of wealth and nutriing (in the stable).
8.

ment

rejoicing,

not take

harm

we,

Agni, thy neighbours,

A. Prayer for success

IV, 38.
1.

may

The

successful,

victorious,

in

gambling.

skilfully

gaming

Apsara, that Apsara who makes the winnings in the


game of dice, do I call hither.
2.

The

heaps up (the
winnings
3.

gaming Apsara who sweeps and


stakes), that Apsara who takes the

skilfully

in

May

the

she,

game of dice, do I call hither.


who dances about with the

when she takes


when she desires

the stakes from the


to

win

game

for us, obtain the

dice,

of dice,

advantage

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

150

by

(her)

dance
4.

May she come to us full of abunmagic


Let them not win this wealth of ours
!

The

(Apsaras)

grief and wrath


I

who

who

rejoice in dice,

that joyful

carry

and exulting Apsara, do

call hither.

B.

Prayer to secure the return of calves that


have strayed to a distance.

(the cattle) who wander along the rays


of the sun, or they who wander along the flood of
5.

They

they whose bull (the sun), full of strength, from


afar protecting, with the clay wanders about all the

light,

may he

worlds

(the bull), full of strength, delighting in this offering, come to us together with the

atmosphere
6. Together with the atmosphere,
!

thou

who

of strength, protect the white (karki) calf,


Here are many drops
swift
thou
steed (the sun)
come hither
May this white
(of ghee) for thee

art full

calf (karki) of thine, may thy mind, be here


thou
7. Together with the atmosphere,
art full of strength, protect the white (karki)
!

who
calf,

thou swift steed (the sun)!


Here is the fodder,
here the stall, here do we tie down the calf.
Whatever (are your) names,

VII, 50.
1.

As

we own

Prayer for success at

the lightning at

the tree, thus would I


gamesters with my dice
2.

Hail

you.

Whether they be

dice.

times smites irresistibly


to-day irresistibly beat the
all

alert, or

not

the fortune

alert,

of (these) folks, unresisting, shall assemble from


sides, the gain (collect) within my hands
!

all

CHARMS TO SECURE PROSPERITY.

VII.

I5I

invoke with reverence Agni, who has his


here attached he shall heap up gain
I
for us
procure (wealth) for myself, as if with
chariots that win the race.
May I accomplish auI

3.

own

riches

spiciously the song of praise to the Maruts


4. May we by thy aid conquer the (adversary's)
troop help us (to obtain) our share in every con!

test

Make

road

crush,

enemies

good and ample


Maghavan, the lusty power of our

for us,

Indra,

have conquered and cleaned thee out (?)


5. I
have also gained thy reserve. As the wolf plucks
to pieces the sheep, thus do I pluck thy winnings.
6. Even the strong hand the bold player conquers,
;

as the skilled gambler heaps up his winnings at


the proper time.
Upon him that loves the game
(the god), and does not spare his money, (the game,
the god) verily bestows the delights of wealth.
7.

Through

(the

possession

of)

we

cattle

all

(our) wretched poverty, or with


May
grain our hunger, O thou oft implored (god)
we foremost among rulers, unharmed, gain wealth
by our cunning devices

would suppress

8.

my

Gain

is

deposited in

Let

left.

me become

horses, wealth, and gold


9.

O
(is

right hand, victory in

conqueror of

Bind

me

cow

that

is

to a streak of gain, as the

bound) with the string

VI, 56.

cattle,

dice, yield play, profitable as a

rich in milk

bow

my

Exorcism of serpents from the premises.

the serpent, ye gods, not slay us along


The closed (jaw)
with our children and our men
1.

May

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

152

Reversnap open, the open one not close


ence (be) to the divine folk
2. Reverence be to the black
serpent, reverence
shall not

one that

to the

sva<?a reverence

To the brown
striped across
reverence to the divine folk

is
;

and

clap thy teeth

also thy

3.
upon thy teeth,
jaw upon thy jaw I press thy tongue against thy
tongue, and close up, O serpent, thy mouth.
;

X,

4.

Charm against serpents, invoking the


horse of Pedu that slays serpents.

To

1.

Indra belongs the

chariot, to the

first

gods

the second chariot, to Varu^a, forsooth, the third.


The serpents' chariot is the last it shall hit a post,
:

and come

to grief!

The young

darbha-grass burns (the serpents ?),


of the horse, the tail of the shaggy one, the
seat of the wagon (burns the serpents ?).
2.

the

tail

Strike down,
white (horse), with thy foreAs timber floating in water,
foot and thy hind-foot
3.

the poison of the serpents, the fierce


of strength.

fluid, is

devoid

Neighing loudly he dived down, and, again


As timber floating in water, the
diving up, said
4.

'

poison of the serpents, the fierce

fluid, is

devoid of

strength.'

The

5.

horse

horse of Pedu
the black.

The

of Pedu slays the kasar/^ila, the


slays the" white (serpent), and also

horse of Pedu cleaves the head of

the ratharvi, the adder.

6.

thee

horse of Pedu, go thou first


we come after
Thou shalt cast out the serpents from the
:

road upon which we come


7. Here the horse of Pedu was born
!

from here

CHARMS TO SECURE PROSPERITY.

VII.

53

Here are the tracks of the serpentsteed


killing, powerful
8. May the closed
(serpent's jaw) not snap open,
the
not
one
close
The two serpents in
may
open
this field, man and wife,
they are both bereft of
is

his departure.

strength.
9.

Without strength here are the serpents, those


and those that are far. With a club

that are near,

do

slay the vriskika. (scorpion), with a staff the


serpent that has approached.
I

10. Here is the


remedy for both the agha^va and
the sva^a
Indra (and) Pedu's horse have put to
naught the evil-planning (aghayantam) serpent.
11. The horse of Pedu do we remember, the
!

strong, with strong footing: behind


these adders.

Deprived are they of life's


poison, slain by Indra with his
slain them
we have slain them.
12.

lie,

staring forth,

spirit,

bolt.

deprived of
Indra hath

Slain are they that are striped across, crushed


are the adders
Slay thou the one that produces
13.

a hood, (slay) the white and the black in the darbhagrass


14.

The maiden

of the Kirata-tribe, the

digs up the remedy, with golden


mountain's back.

little

one

spades, on the

Hither has come a youthful physician: he


He,
slays the speckled (serpent), is irresistible.
15.

forsooth, crushes the sva^a and the vris&ika both.


16. Indra did set. at
naught for me the serpent,
so
Mitra
and
Varuwa, Vata and Par^anya
(and
did)

both.

Indra did set at naught for me the serpent,


the adder, male and female, the sva^a, (the
serpent)
17.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

154
that

is

striped

the

across,

kasar^ila,

and

the

da^onasi.
1

Indra slew thy

8.

first

be

theirs

man

and

serpent,

forsooth, can

have gathered up

19.

ancestor,

what strength,

since they are crushed,

their heads, as the fisher-

have gone off into the


(fish).
and
washed out the serpent's poison.
midst,

the karvara

river's

20.

The

21.

As

poison of

all serpents the rivers shall


Slain
are
carry off!
they that are striped across,
crushed are the adders
!

skilfully

guide the mares,

go away

cull the

(thus),

fibre of the plants, as

serpent, shall thy poison

The

poison that is in the fire, in the sun, in


the earth, and in the plants, the kanda-poison, the
22.

and come
23. The serpents that are sprung from the fire,
that are sprung from the plants, that are sprung
from the water, and originate from the lightning
they from whom great brood has sprung in many
ways, those serpents do we revere with obeisance.
24. Thou art, (O plant), a maiden, Taudi by
name; Ghr/ta/i, forsooth, is thy name. Underfoot
is
I
take in hand what destroys the
thy place

kanaknaka, thy poison

shall

go

forth,

poison.
25.
it

From every

limb

out from the heart

make

Now

go down below

poison shall

the poison start; shut


the force that is in thy

The

he has
poison has gone to a distance
he has fused the poison with poison.
Agni has put away the poison of the serpent, Soma
has led it out.
The poison has gone back to the
26.

shut

biter.

it

out

The

serpent

is

dead

CHARMS TO SECURE PROSPERITY.

VII.

XI,

55

Prayer to Bhava and .5arva for protection


from dangers.

2.

Bhava and 6arva, be

do not attack
(us)
ye lords of beings, lords of cattle, reverence be
to you twain
Discharge not your arrow even after
it has been laid on
(the bow), and has been drawn!
1.

merciful,

Destroy not our bipeds and our quadrupeds


2.
Prepare not our bodies for the dog, or the
for the aliklavas, the vultures, and the black
jackal
!

Thy greedy insects, O lord of cattle (pasuand


pate),
thy birds shall not get us to devour
3. Reverence we offer, O Bhava, to thy roaring,
to thy breath, and to thy injurious qualities
birds

reverence

mortal
4.

to

thee,

Rudra,

We

offer reverence to thee

the north, and from the south

and from heaven.


5.

thousand-eyed,

im-

To

thy face,

from the

east,

from

from (every) domain,


Reverence be to thy atmosphere!

lord

of cattle, to thy eyes,

Bhava, to thy skin, to thy form, thy appearance,


(and to thy aspect) from behind, reverence be
!

6.

To

thy limbs, to thy belly, to thy tongue, to


mouth, to thy teeth, to thy smell (nose),

thy
reverence be
7.

May we

with the dark

not conflict with


crest,

the slayer of

Ardhaka

Bhava
Bhava shall

shall steer clear

8.

Rudra, the archer

the thousand-eyed, powerful one,


!

from us on

all

sides,

steer clear from us, as fire from water

May he not bear malice towards us


to him

reverence be

9.

Four

times, eight times, be reverence to Bhava,

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

156

ten times be reverence to thee,

To

lord of cattle

thy (charge) have been assigned these

(kinds

cattle

of)

cows,

five

men, goats and

horses,

sheep.

strong god (ugra), are the four


regions, thine the sky, thine the earth, and thine
this broad atmosphere
thine is this all that has
10.

Thine,

a spirit and has breath upon the earth.

Thine is this broad, treasure-holding receptacle


within which all worlds are contained.
Do thou
1 1.

spare us,

lord of cattle

Far from us
far shall

go

reverence be to thee

go the jackals, evil omens, dogs


mourning women) who bewail mis-

shall

(the

fortune with dishevelled hair

crested (god), carriest in (thy hand),


Thou,
that smites thousands, a yellow, golden bow that slays
12.

hundreds
Rudra's arrow, the missile of the gods,
flies abroad
reverence be to it, in whatever direction from here (it flies)
13. The adversary who lurks and seeks to overcome thee, O Rudra, upon him thou dost fasten
;

thyself from behind, as (the hunter) that follows the


trail of a wounded
(animal).
14. Bhava and Rudra, united and concordant,
both strong (ugrau), ye advance to deeds of heroism:
reverence be to both of them, in whatever direction
(they are) from here
!

15.

Reverence be

to thee coming, reverence to


Rudra, be to thee standing,

thee going; reverence,

and reverence, also, to thee sitting


16. Reverence in the evening, reverence
!

morning, reverence by night, reverence by day


offered reverence to
1

7.

Bhava and

in the
I

have

to .Sarva, both.

Let us not with our tongue offend Rudra, who

CHARMS TO SECURE PROSPERITY.

VII.

57

rushes on, thousand-eyed, overseeing all, who hurls


(his shafts) forward, who is manifoldly wise
18.
approach first the (god) that has dark
!

We

horses,
casts
19.

sable, destructive, terrible, who


the car of Kei'in reverence be to him

is

black,

down

Do

not hurl at us thy club, thy divine bolt;


Shake over
us, O lord of cattle

be not incensed at

some other than us the

celestial

branch

Injure us not, interpose for us, spare us, be


not angry with us
Let us not contend with thee
20.

21.

Do

not covet our

cattle,

our men, our goats

and sheep
Bend thy course elsewhere, O strong
god (ugra), slay the offspring of the blasphemers
22. He whose missile, fever and cough, assails
!

the single (victim), as the snorting of a stallion, who


snatches away (his victims) one by one, to him be

reverence
23.

He who

dwells fixed in the atmosphere, smit-

ing the blasphemers of the god that do not sacrifice,


to him be reverence with ten 5akvari-stanzas
!

24.

For thee the wild beasts of the

forest

have

been placed in the forest flamingoes, eagles, birds


of prey, and fowls.
Thy spirit, O lord of cattle, is
within the waters, to strengthen thee the heavenly
:

waters flow.
25.

The

dolphins, great serpents (boas), purikayas

sea-monsters, fishes, ra^asas, at


which thou shootest there exists for thee,
Bhava,
(water-animals),

no distance, and no barrier.


around the entire earth

slayest in the
26.

Do

not,

At

a glance thou lookest


from the eastern thou

northern ocean.

Rudra, contaminate us with fever,

or with poison, or with


cause this
heavenly fire
lightning to descend elsewhere than upon us
:

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

158

27. Bhava rules the sky, Bhava rules the earth;


Bhava has filled the broad atmosphere. Reverence
be to him in whatever direction from here (he

abides)

king Bhava, be merciful to thy worshipper,

for thou

He who

28.

art the lord of living beasts!


believes the gods exist, to his quadruped

be merciful

and biped

neither
29. Slay neither our great nor our small
those of us that are riding, nor those that shall ride
neither our father, nor our mother. Cause no injury,
;

Rudra, to our own persons


30. To Rudra's howling dogs,
!

food without blessing,

made

who swallow their


who have wide jaws, I have

this obeisance.

Reverence, O god, be to thy shouting hosts,


reverence to thy long-haired, reverence to thy
31.

reverenced, reverence to thy devouring hosts


well-being and security be to us

May

IV, 28.

1.

Prayer to Bhava and ^Sarva for


protection from calamities.

Bhava and 6arva,

am

devoted to you.

Take note

of that, ye under whose control


which shines (the visible universe)
Ye
!

all

2.

ful

this

who

rule

these two-footed and four-footed creatures, deliver

us from calamity
all

is all

Ye

that

to
is

archers

whom

belongs

all

that

is

ye who are known as


among bowmen ye who

far

near by, yea,


the most

skil-

rule all these

two-footed and four-footed creatures, deliver us from


calamity
3.

The thousand-eyed

slayers of Wz'tra both

do

VII.

CHARMS TO SECURE PROSPERITY.

59

I invoke.
I
go praising the two strong gods (ugrau)
whose pastures extend far. Ye who rule all these
two-footed and four-footed creatures, deliver us from

calamity
4.

old,

Ye

who, united, did undertake many (deeds) of


and, moreover, did visit portents upon the

people
ye who rule all these two-footed and fourfooted creatures, deliver us from calamity
5. Ye from whose blows no one either among
;

ye who rule all these twogods or men escapes


footed and four-footed creatures, deliver us from
;

calamity

The

6.

sorcerer

who

prepares a

spell,

or manipu-

lates the roots (of plants) against us, against him,

Ye who
ye strong gods, launch your thunderbolt
rule all these two-footed and four-footed creatures,
deliver us from calamity.
!

Ye

strong gods, favour us in battles, bring into


I
contact with your thunderbolt the Kimidin
praise
7.

you,

distress

Bhava and 6arva,


:

VII,

call

fervently

deliver us from calamity

9.

Charm

upon you

in

for finding lost property.

On

the distant path of the paths Pushan was


the
on
distant path of heaven, on the distant
born,
Upon the two most lovely places
path of the earth.
both he walks hither and away, knowing (the way).
he shall lead
2. Pushan knows these regions all
us by the most dangerless (way). Bestowing wellbeing, of radiant glow, keeping our heroes undiminished, he shall, alert and skilful, go before us
3. O Pushan, under thy law may we never suffer
1.

harm
4.

as praisers of thee are we here


Pushan shall from the east place his right
:

hand

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

l60

about
lost

shall

us,

we

shall

When

lost

Propitiation of the weather-prophet.

VI, 128.
1.

bring again to us what has been

come upon what has been

the stars

made ^Sakadhuma
'

their king
This shall

they bestowed good weather upon him


be his dominion,' they said.
have good weather at noon, good
2. Let us
weather at eve, good weather in the early morning,
:

good weather in the night


3. For day and night, for the stars, for sun and
moon, and for us prepare good weather, O king
.Sakadhuma
!

thee, O 5a.kadhu.ma, ruler of the stars, that


us
good weather in the evening, in the night,
gavest
and by day, let there ever be obeisance
4.

To

XI,

6.

Prayer for deliverance from calamity,


addressed to the entire pantheon.

To Agni we

speak and to the trees, to the


plants and to the herbs to Indra, Br/haspati, and
Surya they shall deliver us from calamity
1.

We

speak to king Varu;za, to Mitra, Visrmu


To Amsa and Vivasvant do we speak
they shall deliver us from calamity
3. We speak to Savitar, the god, to Dhatar, and to
Pushan to first-born Tvash/ar do we speak they
2.

and Bhaga.

from calamity
4. We speak to the Gandharvas and the Apsaras,
to the A-svins and to Brahmawaspati, to the god
whose name is Aryaman they shall deliver us from

shall deliver us

calamity
5.

Now

do we speak

to

day and

night, to

Surya

CHARMS TO SECURE PROSPERITY.

VII.

and

(sun)

/vandramas (moon), the twain

to

we speak

the Adityas

calamity

l6l

to all

they shall deliver us

from

We

speak to Vata (wind) and Par^anya, to the


atmosphere and the directions of space. And to all
the regions do we speak they shall deliver us from
6.

calamity

Day and

7.

and Ushas (dawn),

night,

deliver thee from curses

Aandramas (moon),

call

To the

8.

too, shall

Soma the god, whom


shall deliver me

they

animals of the earth and those of heaven,

to the wild beasts of the forest, to the

winged birds,
do we speak they shall deliver us from calamity
9. Now do we speak to Bhava and 6arva, to Rudra
and Pai-upati their arrows do we know well these
(arrows) shall be ever propitious to us
:

We

and the stars, to


the
and
the mountains to the seas,
earth,
Yakshas,
the rivers, and the lakes
they shall deliver us from
10.

speak to the heavens,

calamity
1

1.

To

the seven

now do we

To

speak, to the
the Fathers with

they shall

deliver us from

i?z'shis

divine waters and Pra^apati.

Yama

at their

calamity

head

12. The gods that dwell in heaven, and those that


dwell in the atmosphere
the mighty (gods) that
are fixed upon the earth, they shall deliver us from
;

calamity

The

Adityas, Rudras, Vasus, the divine Atharvans in heaven, and the wise Arigiras they shall
13.

deliver us from calamity


14.
speak to the sacrifice
!

We

and the

sacrificer, to

the riks, the samans, and the healing


(Atharvan)
charms we speak to the ya^us-formulas and the
;

[42]

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

62

invocations (to the gods)

calamity

they shall deliver us from

We

15.
speak to the five kingdoms of the plants
with soma the most excellent among them. The

darbha-grass, hemp, and mighty barley


deliver us from calamity

they shall

We

speak to the Arayas (demons of grudge),


Rakshas, serpents, pious men, and Fathers to the
one and a hundred deaths
they shall deliver us
16.

from calamity
1 7.

To

the seasons

we

speak, to the lords of the

seasons, and

to the halfto the sections of the year


they shall deliver us from
years, years, and months
;

calamity

Come, ye gods, from the south and the west


From the east, from
ye gods in the east come forth
the north the mighty gods, all the gods assembled
18.

they shall deliver us from calamity


19. 20.
speak here to all the gods that hold to
their agreements, promote the order (of the universe),
!

We

together with

all

their wives

they shall deliver us

from calamity
21. We speak to being, to the lord of being, and
!

him that

also to
all

assembled

controls the beings to the beings


they shall deliver us from calamity
;

The

five divine regions, the twelve divine


seasons, the teeth of the year, they shall ever be
22.

propitious to us
23. The amrz'ta (ambrosia), bought for the price of
a chariot, which Matali knows as a remedy, that Indra
!

stored

away in the waters


remedy

ye as a

that,

O ye waters,

furnish

VIII.

CHARMS

IN EXPIATION

Prayer against mental delinquency.

VI, 45.

Pass

1.

OF SIN AND DEFILEMENT.

far

away,

sin of the

mind!

thou utter things not to be uttered


I

2.

dost

Pass away,

To

the trees, the forests go on


the house, the cattle, is my mind.

love thee not

With

Why

What wrongs we have committed

through

imprecation, calumny, and false speech, either awake,


or asleep
Agni shall put far away from us all
offensive evil deeds
!

3.

may

What,

Pra/etas

Indra Brahma/^aspati,
('care-taker')

from misfortune, and from

falsely

protect

Afigirasa

evil

Charm

VI, 26.

we do

us

to avert evil.

Let me go, O evil; being powerful, take thou


Set me, O evil, unharmed, into the
pity on us
world of happiness
2. If, O evil, thou dost not abandon us, then do
1.

we abandon

thee at the fork of the road.

May

evil

follow after another (man)


3. Away from us may thousand-eyed, immortal
Him whom we hate may it strike, and
(evil) dwell
!

him

whom we

hate do thou surely smite

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

164

Expiatory formula for imperfections

VI, 114.

in

the sacrifice.

1
The god-angering (deed),
ye gods, that we,
the (Brahman) gods, have committed, from that do
ye,
Adityas, release us, by virtue of the order of
.

the universe

By virtue of the order of the universe do ye,


reverend Adityas, release us here, if,
ye carriers

2.

of the sacrifice, though desirous of accomplishing


(the sacrifice), we did not accomplish (it)
!

3.

(If),

when

sacrificing with the fat (animal),

when

offering oblations of ghee with the spoon, when


all ye gods, we have
desiring to benefit you,
contrary to desire, not succeeded

VI, 115.

Expiatory formulas for

sins.

1. From the sins which


knowingly or unknowingly
we have committed, do ye, all gods, of one accord,

release us
2.

If

awake, or

if

asleep, to sin inclined,

have

committed a sin, may what has been, and what shall


be, as if from a wooden post, release me
3. As one released from a wooden post, as one in
a sweat by bathing (is cleansed) of filth, as ghee is
!

by the

clarified

from

sin

may

sieve,

all

(the gods) clear

me

Expiation for the precedence of a


younger brother over an older.

VI, 112.

(younger brother) not slay the oldest


one of them, O Agni protect him that he be not
torn out by the root
Do thou here cunningly
1.

May

this

CHARMS

VIII.

IN EXPIATION OF SIN ETC.

loosen the fetter of Grahi (attack of disease)


all the
gods give thee leave

may

Free these three, O Agni, from the three fetters


with which they have been shackled
Do thou
2.

them
and mother
3. The fetters with which the older brother, whose
younger brother has married before him, has been
bound, with which he has been encumbered and
shackled limb by limb, may they be loosened since
cunningly loosen the fetters of Grahi

all,

father, sons,

release

for loosening they are

Pushan, the
misdeeds upon him that practiseth abortion
fit

Wipe

off,

Expiation for certain heinous crimes.

VI, 113.
1.

On

wiped

it

the gods wiped off


on human beings hence

Trita.
off

of disease) has seized thee,

her by means of their charm


2.

Enter

this sin, Trz'ta


if

Grahi (attack

these gods remove

may
!

into the rays, into

smoke, O sin go into


Lose thyself on

the vapours, and into the fog


the foam of the river!
Wipe

off, O
Pushan, the
misdeeds upon him that practiseth abortion
3. Deposited in twelve places is that which has
been wiped off Trz'ta, the sins belonging to humanity.
!

Hence if Grahi has seized thee, may these gods


remove her by means of their charm
!

VI, 120.

Prayer for heaven after remission of


sins.

1.

If air, or earth

we have
hold

injured,

fire)

and heaven,

may

without

fail

this

if

mother or

father,

Agni Garhapatya (houselead us out from this (crime)

to the world of well-doing

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

66

The

our mother, Aditi (the universe)


our kin, the air our protector from hostile schemes.
May father sky bring prosperity to us from the world
2.

earth

of the Fathers

and not

is

may

come

to

my

(departed) kin,

heaven
3. In that bright world where our pious friends live
in joy, having cast aside the ailments of their own
bodies, free from lameness, not deformed in limb,
there may we behold our parents and our children
lose

VI, 27.

Charm

against pigeons regarded as

ominous

birds.

ye gods, if the pigeon, despatched as the


messenger of Nirr/ti (the goddess of destruction),
1.

hath come here seeking (us out), we shall sing his


praises, and prepare (our) ransom.
May our twofooted and four-footed creatures be prosperous
2. Auspicious to us shall be the pigeon that has
!

been despatched
be to our house

harmless, ye gods, the bird shall


The sage Agni shall verily take

pleasure in our oblation


avoid us

the winged missile shall

3.

The winged

missile shall not

do us injury

upon our hearth, our fireplace he (the pigeon) takes


his steps
Propitious he shall be to our cattle and
!

our domestics

do harm

to us

Upon

shall fall
if

may

not,

ye gods, the pigeon here

Charm

VI, 29.
1.

against ominous pigeons and owls.

those persons yonder the winged missile


If the owl shrieks, futile shall this be, or

the pigeon takes his steps upon the

fire

CHARMS

VIII.

IN EXPIATION OF SIN ETC.

67

thy two messengers, O Nirrz'ti, who come


here, despatched or not despatched, to our house, to
2.

To

the pigeon and to the owl, this shall be no place to


step
3.

upon

He

shall not fly hither to slaughter (our)

men sound he

to

shall settle here

men;

Charm

keep (our)
him very far away unto a distant region, that (people)
shall behold you (i.e. him) in Yama's house devoid of
strength, that they shall behold

you bereft of power

Expiation when one is defiled by a


black bird of omen.

VII, 64.

1.

What

this black bird flying forth

towards (me)
me from

has dropped here may the waters protect


all that misfortune and evil
!

What

has brushed here with thy


mouth, O Nirrzti (goddess of misfortune) may Agni
Garhapatya (the god of the household fire) free me
2.

from

this black bird

this sin

Exorcism of

VI, 46.
1.

Thou who

art

neither

immortal child of the

Varu^ani

Aram
2.

is

We

gods

thy mother,
thy name.

alive
art

Yama

is

know,

evil

dreams.

nor dead,
thou,

(death)

the

Sleep

thy father,

Sleep, thy birth, thou art the son

of the divine women-folk, the instrument of


Thou art the ender, thou art death
(death)
!

Yama
Thus

do we know thee, O Sleep do thou, O Sleep, protect


us from evil dreams
an
3. As one pays off a sixteenth, an eighth, or
dream
(entire) debt, thus do we transfer every evil
:

upon our enemy.

HYMNS OF THE ATIIARVA-VEDA.

68

VII, 115.
istics,

Charm for the removal of evil characterand the acquisition of auspicious ones.

Fly forth from here, O evil mark, vanish from


here, fly forth to yonder place
Upon him that
hates us do we fasten thee with a brazen hook.
2. The unsavoury mark which flying has
alighted
1.

upon me, as a creeper upon a tree, that mayest thou


put away from us, away from here, O golden-handed
(golden-rayed) Savitar (the sun), bestowing goods
upon us
3. Together with the body of the mortal, from
his birth, one and a hundred marks are born.
Those that are most foul do we drive away from
here the auspicious ones, O C7atavedas (Agni), do
!

thou hold

fast for us

4. These (marks) here I have separated, as cows


scattered upon the heather.
The pure marks shall
I
the
foul
ones
have
made
to disappear
remain,
!

IX.

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS IN THE INTEREST


OF THE BRAHMANS.
V,

Imprecation against the oppressors of

8.

Brahmans.

The

i.

gods,

(cow) to eat.

Do

king, did not give to thee this


not,
prince, seek to devour the

cow of the Brahma^a, which

is

be eaten

unfit to

The prince, beguiled by dice, the wretched


one who has lost as a stake his own person, he may,
2.

cow of the Brahma^a,

perchance, eat the


'

let

me

3.

live to-day

Enveloped

(if)

(is

with evil poison


of the Brahmawa

cow

(thinking),

'
!

she) in her skin, as an adder


do not,
prince, (eat the cow)

that

not to-morrow

sapless,

unfit

to

be eaten,

is

does (the Brahma?2a) take regal power,


like fire which has caught does
destroys vigour
he burn away everything.
He that regards the
4.

Away

Brahma^a

as

fit

food drinks of the poison of the

taimata-serpent.
5. He who thinks
slays him, he who

him (the Brahman) mild, and


reviles the gods, lusts after

wealth, without thought, in his heart Indra kindles


a fire
him both heaven and earth hate while he
;

lives.
6.

The Brahmawa must

not be encroached upon,

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

I70

any more than fire, by him that regards his own body!
For Soma is his (the Brahma^a's) heir, Indra protects
him from hostile plots.

He

swallows her (the cow), bristling with a


hundred hooks, (but) is unable to digest her, he,
7.

the fool who, devouring the food of the Brahmans,


I am
thinks,
eating a luscious (morsel).'
'

8.

(The Brahman's) tongue turns


voice

string, his

into

the

into

a bow-

neck of an arrow

his

windpipe, his teeth are bedaubed with holy fire


with these the Brahman strikes those who revile
:

the gods, by means of bows that have the strength


to reach the heart, discharged by the gods.
9. The Brahma/zas have sharp arrows, are armed

with missiles, the arrow which they hurl goes not


in vain
pursuing him with their holy fire and their
;

wrath, even from afar, do they pierce him.


10. They who ruled over a thousand, and were

themselves ten hundred, the Vaitahavya, when they

devoured the cow of the Brahma^a, perished.


11.

The cow

down upon

the

themselves the
12.

when slaughtered, came


Vaitahavyas, who had roasted for
herself,

last she-goat of

Kesaraprabandha\

persons whom the


because they had injured the

The one hundred and one

earth did cast

off,

offspring of a Brahma^a, were ruined irretrievably.


1
3. As a reviler of the gods does he live among

mortals, having swallowed poison, he becomes more


bone (than flesh). He that injureth a Brahma^a,
whose kin are the gods, does not reach heaven by

the road of the Fathers.


14.

Agni

is

called

Indra slays those


(sages) know.

who

our guide,

Soma

our

heir,

curse (us): that the strong

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS FOR BRAHMANS.

IX.

Like

15.

adder,

poisoned

lord of cattle,

Brahma^a

is

arrow, O king, like an


the terrible arrow of the

with that he smites those

who

revile

(the gods).

V,

Imprecation against the oppressors of

19.

Brahmans.
1.

short

Beyond measure they waxed


of touching

the

strong, just

When

heavens.

they

fell

in-

fringed upon Bhr/gu they perished, the Srz'^aya

Vaitahavyas.
2. The
persons who pierced Brzhatsaman, the
descendant of Angiras, the Brahma/za a ram with
two rows of teeth, a sheep devoured their offspring.

They who

spat upon the Brahma;/a, who desired


tribute from him, they sit in the middle of a pool of
blood, chewing hair.
3.

4. The cow of the Brahman, when roasted, as far


as she reaches does she destroy the lustre of the

no lusty hero

born (there).
5.
(sacrilegious) deed is her slaughter,
her meat, when eaten, is sapless when her milk
is drunk, that
surely is accounted a crime against

kingdom

is

cruel

the Fathers.
6.

When

7.

Becoming

the king, weening himself mighty, desires to destroy the Brahma^a, then royal power is
dissipated, where the Brahma^a is oppressed.
eight-footed,

four-eyed,

four-eared,

four-jawed, two-mouthed, two-tongued, she dispels


the rule of the oppressor of the Brahman.
8.

That (kingdom)

a leaking ship

surely she swamps, as water


misfortune strikes that kingdom, in

which they injure a Brahma;za.


9.

The

trees chase

away with

the words

'

do not

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

172

him who covets the wealth


a Brahma;/a, O Narada

come within our


that belongs to

shade,'

King Varu/za pronounced this (to be) poison,


no one who has devoured
prepared by the gods
10.

the cow of a Brahma;za

retains

the

charge of a

kingdom.
1 1

Those

full

nine and ninety

whom

the earth

did cast off, because they had injured the offspring


of a Brahma;/a, were ruined irretrievably.
12. The kudi-plant (Christ's thorn) that wipes

away the track

which they fasten to the


oppressor of Brahmans, the

(of death),

dead, that very one,


gods did declare (to be) thy couch.

The

which have rolled from (the eyes


of) the oppressed (Brahman), as he laments, these
very ones, O oppressor of Brahmans, the gods did
13.

tears

assign to thee as thy share of water.


14. The water with which they bathe the dead,

with which they moisten his beard, that very one,


O oppressor of Brahmans, the gods did assign to
thee as thy share of water.

The

15.

rain

of Mitra

and Varima does not

moisten the oppressor of Brahmans the assembly


is not complacent for him, he does not
guide his
;

friend according- to his will.

V,

Prayer to appease Arati, the

7.

demon

of

grudge and avarice.


Bring (wealth) to us, do not stand in our way,
O Arati do not keep from us the sacrificial reward
as it is being taken (to us)
Adoration be to the
1.

power of grudge, the power of


Arati

failure,

adoration to

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS FOR BRAIIMANS.

IX.

To

2.

thy advising minister,

make thy

didst

whom

73

thou, Arati,

Do

agent, do we make obeisance.

not bring failure to my wish


3. May our wish, instilled by the gods, be fulfilled
go in quest of Arati.
by day and night
!

We

Adoration be to Arati

Sarasvati (speech), Anumati (favour), and Bhaga


Pleasant, honied, words
(fortune) we go to invoke.
4.

have spoken on the occasions when the gods were

invoked.

Him whom

I
implore with Va>6 Sarasvati (the
of
speech), the yoke-fellow of thought, faith
goddess
shall find to-day, bestowed by the brown soma

5.

Neither our wish nor our speech do thou frustrate


May Indra and Agni both bring us wealth
6.

Do

ye

Qfain

Go

avert.

far

away,
know thee

Arati
8.

to-day desire to

favour with Arati

7.

who

all

make

gifts to us

failure
(to be)

Thy

missile

do we

oppressive and piercing,

Thou

woman,

dost even transform thyself into a naked


and attach thyself to people in their sleep,

frustrating,

Arati, the thought

and intention of

man.

To

her who, great, and of great dimension,


did penetrate all the regions, to this golden-locked
9.

Nirr/ti

(goddess of misfortune),

have rendered

obeisance.

the gold-complexioned, lovely one, who


rests upon golden cushions, to the great one, to
10.

To

that Arati

obeisance.

who wears golden

robes,

have rendered

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

74

XII,

4.

The

necessity of giving away sterile


cows to the Brahmans.

'

1.

give,'

he

'

shall surely say,

the sterile

cow

to

and they have noted her


the begging Brahmans'
that brings progeny and offspring
!

2. With his offspring does he trade, of his cattle


he deprived, that refuses to give the cow of the
gods to the begging descendants of the 7?/shis.
3. Through (the gift of) a cow with broken horns
his (cattle) breaks down, through a lame one he
tumbles into a pit, through a mutilated one his
house is burned, through a one-eyed one his property
is

is

given away.

Flow

4.

of blood attacks the cattle-owner from

the spot where her dung is deposited


this understanding there is about the vasa (the sterile cow)
:

for thou (sterile cow) art said to

deceive

be very

difficult to

From

the resting-place of her feet the (disease)


called viklindu overtakes (the owner, or the cattle).
5.

Without sickness breaks down


sniffs

(the cattle)

which she

upon with her nose.

He

that pierces her ears is estranged from


the gods.
He thinks I am making a mark (upon
6.

'

her),'
7.

tail

(but) he diminishes his own property.


If any one for whatsoever purpose cuts

then do his colts

die,

and the wolf tears

her
his

calves.

crow has injured her hair, as long as she


with her owner then do his children die decline
8.

is

If a

overtakes them without (noticeable) sickness.


9. If the serving-maid sweeps together her dung,

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS FOR BRAHMANS.

IX.

75

that bites as lye, there arises from this sin disfigurement that passeth not away.

The

cow in her very birth is born for


Hence to the Brahmans
Brahma^as.
the gods and
she is to be given
that, they say, guarantees the
10.

sterile

own

security of one's

property.

For those that come requesting her the cow


has been created by the gods.
Oppression of
Brahmans it is called, if he keeps her for himself.
12. He that refuses to give the cow of the gods
1 1

to the descendants of the i?/shis

the

upon
Brahma^as.

infringes

13.

gods,

who ask

and the wrath

for

it,

of the

derives benefit from this sterile

Though he

When kept
cow, another (cow) then shall he seek
she injures (his) folk, if he refuses to give her after
she has been asked for
!

14.

The

sterile

the Brahma^as

soever she
15.

is

cow

as a treasure deposited for


for her, with whom-

is

they come here

born.

The Brahma/zas come

when they come

for the sterile

here for their own,


The refusal of
cow.

is, as though he were oppressing


concerns.

her

16.

them

in

other

herds up to her third year, and no


discovered in her, and he finds her to be

If she

disease

is

a sterile cow,

Narada, then must he look for the

Brahmawas.
17. If he denies that she

is sterile,

a treasure de-

posited for the gods, then Bhava and .5arva, both,


come upon him, and hurl their arrow upon him.
18.

Though he does

udder, or

tits,

not perceive upon her either

yet both yield him milk,

prevailed upon himself to give

away

if

he has

the sterile cow.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

76

Hard

to cheat, she oppresses him, if, when


asked for, he refuses to give her.
His desires are
19.

not

he aims to accomplish them without

fulfilled, if

giving her away.


20.

The gods

did ask for the sterile cow,

Brahmawa

the

their mouthpiece.
does not give (her) enters into the
these.
21.

making

The man
wrath of

that
all

of

Into the wrath of the cattle enters he that

gives not the sterile cow to the Brahma^as if he,


the mortal, appropriates the share deposited for the
;

oods.
22.

owner

Even

if

for the

anent her

'
:

a hundred other Brahma;2as beg the


sterile cow, yet the gods did say

The cow belongs

to

him

that

knoweth

thus.'

He

cow to him that


and
her
to
others, difficult to
thus,
gives
dwell upon is for him the earth with her divinities.
24. The gods did beg the sterile cow of him with
whom she was born at first. That very one Narada
recognised and drove forth in company with the
23.

that refuses the sterile

knoweth

gods.
25.

The

sterile

cow renders

and poor

childless,

in

him that yet appropriates her, when she has


for by the Brahma/^as.
26. For Agni and Soma, for Kama, for Mitra, and
for Varu/za, for these do the Brahma;/as beg her
cattle,

been begged

upon these he

infringes, if

he gives her

not.

As

27.
long as the owner does not himself hear
the stanzas referring to (the giving away of) her,

she

may herd among his cattle


heard (them) may she pass the
28.

He

(only)

if

he has not

night in his house.

that has listened to the stanzas, yet has

IX.

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS FOR BRAHMANS.

permitted her to herd among the cattle, his


prosperity the angry gods destroy.

life

IJJ

and

29. The sterile cow, even when she rambles freely,


a treasure deposited for the gods.
Make evident
thy true nature when thou desirest to go to thy
is

(proper) stable

She makes evident her nature when

30.

desires to

to her (proper)

go

the sterile cow puts


to

beg

it

into the

stable.

Then

she

indeed

minds of the Brahmans

(for her).

31.

She evolves

32.

The

in her mind, that (thought)


it
Then do the Brahmans come to
reaches the gods.
beg for the sterile cow.
call

svadha

befriends

him

with

the

Fathers, the sacrifice with the gods.


Through the
of
cow
the
man
of
the
sterile
royal caste incurs
gift

not the anger of (her), his mother.


the
2,s> The sterile cow is the mother of

man

of

It is
royal caste: thus was it from the beginning.
said to be no (real) deprivation if she is given to the

Brahmans.

As

he were to rob the ghee ladled up for


Agni (the fire) from the (very) spoon, thus, if he
gives not the sterile cow to the Brahmans, does he
34.

upon Agni.

infringe
35.

if

The

sterile

cow has the punWasa

(sacrificial

she yields plentiful milk, helps in


this world, and fulfils all wishes for him that gives
her (to the Brahmans).
cake) for her

36.

dom

The
of

calf,

sterile

Yama

that hell

falls

for
to

cow fulfils all wishes in the kinghim that gives her. But they say
the lot of him that withholds her,

when she has been begged


37.

The

[42]

sterile

for.

cow, even

if

she should become

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

178

fruitful, lives

me

regard

anger at her owner

in

as

since he did

(without giving me to the


in the fetters of

sterile

Brahmans), he

'
:

be bound

shall

'

death

He who

cow

and
(yet) roasts her at home, even his children and
grandchildren Brzhaspati causes to be importuned
38.

thinks that the

is

sterile,

(for her).

39.

when

Fiercely does the (supposed) sterile cow burn


she herds with the cattle, though she be a

owner

She

cow.

(fruitful)

verily, too, milks poison for the

that does not present her.

when she is given to the


moreover, the sterile cow is pleased,
made an offering to the gods (Brahmans).

40. It pleases

Brahmans

when she is
41. From

the cattle

the

sterile

cows which the gods,

turning from the sacrifice, created,


out as (most) terrible the vilipti.

re-

Narada picked

In reference to her the gods reflected: 'Is she


And Narada in reference to
a sterile cow, or not ?
42.

'

Of sterile cows she is


How many sterile cows

her said
'

43.

'

the most sterile


(are there),

'
!

Na'

rada, which thou knowest to be born among men ?


About these do I ask thee, that knowest Of which
'

may

the non-Brahma^a not eat

44.

Of

the

vilipti,

'

of her that has born a sterile

cow, and of the sterile cow (herself), the non-Brahma/m, that hopes for prosperity, shall not eat
!

knowest

Reverence
thoroughly which sterile cow is the most terrible, by
withholding which (from the Brahmans) destruction
be to thee,

45.

is

Narada, that

incurred.

The

Brzhaspati, her that has begotten a sterile cow, and the sterile cow (herself),
46.

vilipti,

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS FOR BRAHMANS.

IX.

the

non-Brahmaa,

not eat

79

that hopes for prosperity, shall

Three

47.

kinds,

of sterile

forsooth,

cows are

there
the vilipti, she that has begotten a sterile
These he shall
cow, and the sterile cow (herself).
:

give to the Brahmans (then) does he not estrange


himself from Pra^apati.
;

'

48.

This

he

shall

is

your oblation, O Brahma^as,' thus


he is supplicated, if they ask him

reflect, if

for the sterile cow, terrible in the

house of him that

refuses to give her.

The gods animadverted

49.

and the
in

her,

in reference to

Bheda

cow, angry because he had not given


these verses
and therefore he (Bheda)

sterile

perished.

Bheda did not present the sterile cow, though


for this sin the gods crushed
requested by Indra
him in battle.
50.

51.

The

52.

They who

counsellors that advise the withholding


(of the sterile cow), they, the rogues, in their folly,
conflict with the wrath of Indra.

lead the owner of cattle aside, then

do not give,' in their folly they run


say to him
into the missile hurled by Rudra.
'

And

he roasts the

cow

at

home,
whether he makes a sacrifice of her, or not, he sins
against the gods and Brahma/^as, and as a cheat
falls from heaven.
53.

XI,

1.

sterile

The

preparation of the brahmaudana, the


porridge given as a fee to the Brahmans.
1.

throes,
for

if

the

Agni, come into being


longing for sons,

Brahmans.

Aditi here in her

cooking the porridge


seven .A'/shis, that did

is

The
N

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

l8o

create the beings, shall here churn thee, along with

progeny
unharmed
2. Produce the smoke, ye lusty friends
by wiles go ye into the contest! Here is the Agni
and commands powerful
(fire) who gains battles,
!

whom

with

warriors,

the

gods did

conquer

the

demons.
3.

to

Agni,

great heroic deed thou wast

cook the Brahman's porridge, O ^ataThe seven ffishis, that did create the beings,
vedas
have produced thee. Grant her (the wife) wealth
together with undiminished heroes
4. Burn, O Agni, after having been kindled by
aroused, to
!

the firewood, bring skilfully hither the gods that are


to be revered
Causing the oblation to cook for
!

these (Brahmans), do thou raise this (sacrificer) to


the highest firmament
!

5.

The

threefold share which

you
and to the mortals
I

was of yore assigned

(belongs) to the gods, the (departed) Fathers,

to

divide

them

protect this

(the priests).

for

you
(woman)

Know your shares

the (share) of the gods shall

Agni, possessed of might, superior, thou


dost without fail prevail
Bend down to the ground
6.

This measure, that is being


measured, and has been measured, may constitute

our hateful rivals

thy kin into (people) that render thee tribute


7. Mayest thou together with thy kin be endowed
with sap
Elevate her (the wife) to great heroism
!

Ascend on high
'

they
8.

call

This

to the base of the firmament,

the world of brightness

great goddess

which

'

earth,

kindly

shall receive the (sacrificial) skin


Then
go to the world of well-doing (heaven)
!

disposed,

may we

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS FOR BRAHMANS.

IX.

the skin

sacrificer

those

these two press-stones, well coupled, upon


crush skilfully the (soma-) shoots for the

Lay

9.

Crush down, (O

who

earth),

and beat down,

are hostile to her (the wife);

and elevate her offspring

lift

up high,

Take into thy hands, O man, the press-stones


work together the gods that are to be revered
have come to thy sacrifice
Whatever three wishes
10.

that

thou dost choose,

shall here procure for thee

unto

fulfilment.
11.

and

This,

this

(O winnowing-basket), is thy purpose,


thy nature may Aditi, mother of heroes,
:

hold of thee

take

hostile to this

Winnow

(woman)

diminished heroes

out those

who

are

and un-

afford her wealth

Do

ye, (O grains), remain in the (winnowing-)


while
basket,
(the wind) blows over you; be separated,
ye who are fit for the sacrifice, from the chaff! May
12.

we in happiness be superior to all our equals


down under our feet those that hate us.
Retire,

13.

bend

The

woman, and return promptly!

stable of the waters (water-vessel) has settled upon


of these (the waters)
thee, that thou mayest carry it
:

thou shalt take such as are


intelligently divided them
rest

behind

fit

off,

for sacrifice
havine
thou shalt leave the
;

These bright women, (the waters), have come


hither.
Arise, thou woman, and gather strength
To thee, that art rendered by thy husband a true
wife, (and) by thy children rich in offspring, the
sacrifice has come
receive the (water-) vessel
14.

1
The share of food that belongs to you of yore
5
has been set aside for you. Instructed by the TvYshis
bring thou (woman) hither this water
May this
.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

l82
sacrifice

win

and

win advancement

offspring- for you


heroes for you

win protection,
be mighty, win cattle,

for you,

may

it

Agni, the sacrificial pot has settled upon


thee: do thou shining, brightly glowing, heat it with
1

6.

divine descendants of the AVshis,


assembled about their share (of the porridge), full of

thy glow

May the

fervour, heat this (pot) at the proper time


1
7. Pure and clear may these sacrificial
!

women,

the waters bright, flow into the pot


They have
given us abundant offspring and cattle. May he
!

that cooks the porridge

(heaven)
18.

go

world of the pious

to the

Purified

by

(our) prayer,

and

clarified

by the

ghee are the soma-shoots, (and) these sacrificial


Enter the water may the pot receive you
grains.
When ye have cooked this (porridge) go ye to the
world of the pious (heaven)
!

19. Spread out far unto great extent, with a thousand surfaces, in the world of the pious
Grand!

fathers, fathers, children, grandchildren


fifteenth one that did cook thee.

am

the

20. The porridge has a thousand surfaces, a hundred streams, and is indestructible it is the road of
the gods, leads to heaven.
Yonder (enemies) do I
;

place

upon thee

(but) to
21.

me

Step

them and

their offspring
that brings gifts thou shalt be merciful
upon the altar (vedi) make this woman
:

injure

thrive in her progeny


repel the demons advance
in
her!
we
May
happiness be superior to all our
;

equals
hate us.
!

22.

bend down under our

Turn towards her with

feet all those that

cattle,

(thou

face towards her, together with the divine

pot),

powers

IX.

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS FOR BRAHMANS.

83

Neither curses nor hostile magic shall reach thee

from disease

rule in thy dwelling free

placed with care, this altar (vedi)


has been arranged of yore for the Brahmans porridge.
Put it,
woman, upon the purified a^sadhri place

Properly

23.

built,

there the porridge for the divine (Brahma/^as)


24. May this sacrificial ladle (sni/), the second
!

hand of

which the seven

Aditi,

Rish'is, the creators

of the beings, did fashion, may this spoon, knowing


the limbs of the porridge, heap it upon the altar!

The

25.

divine (Brahma;^as) shall

from the

down

to

do thou again descending


Clarified by soma
approach them

cooked

thee, the

sit

fire,

sacrifice

settle in the belly of the

ants of the 7?/shis

who

Brahma^as

the descend-

eat thee shall not take

harm

king Soma, infuse harmony into the good


Brahma/^as who shall sit about thee
Eagerly do
I invite to the porridge the 7?/shis, descended from
26.

born of religious fervour, and gladly

i^/shis, that are

obey the call.


27. These pure and
waters)

severally.

you,

may
me

this to

put

into

of the field

the hands

of the

With whatever wish

(the

Brahma;/as

pour this upon


Indra accompanied by the Maruts grant
I

This gold

28.

women

clear sacrificial

is

my

is

my

immortal

light, this ripe fruit

wish-granting cow.

This treasure

I
prepare for myself
present to the Brahmawas
in
the heavens.
a road that leads to the Fathers

29.
fire),

Scatter the spelt into Agni c7atavedas (the


sweep away to a far distance the chaff! This

(chaff)

we have

heard,

is

the share of the ruler of the

house (Agni), and we know,

too,

Nirr/ti (destruction) as her share.

what belongs

to

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

184

Note, (O porridge), him that takes pains, and


lift him
cooks and presses the soma
up to the
30.

he has reached the


heavenly road, upon
fullest age, he shall ascend to the highest firmament,
the supreme heavens
which, after

Anoint (with ghee),

31.

adhvaryu

the

(priest),

surface of this sustaining (porridge), make skilfully


a place for the melted butter with ghee do thou
I
anoint all its limbs
prepare for myself a road
that leads to the Fathers in the heavens.
;

32.

sustaining (porridge), cast destruction and

amono- such as are sitting about thee, and are


not Brahma;/as
(But) the descendants of the ifo'shis,

strife

that eat thee, being full of substance, spreading forth,


shall not take

To

^^.

over,

/vYshis

harm

the descendants of the i^/shis

porridge

those

have no share

who
in

make

thee

are not descended from

May Agni

it!

guardian, may all the Maruts, and


over the cooked food

as

my

the gods watch

all

34.

art

Thee

of wealth,

and

(the porridge) that milkest the sacrifice,

evermore abundant, the male milch-cow, the seat

we beseech

lonsf life

35.

Thou

thou to the

for immortality of offspring


with abundance of wealth.

art a lusty male, penetratest heaven


go
Dwell
ivVshis
descended
from
jRtskis,
:

the world of the pious


(place) for us two
in

there

is

a well-prepared

36. Pack thyself up, go forth


Agni, prepare
the roads, that lead to the gods
By these wellprepared (roads) may we reach the sacrifice, standing
upon the firmament (that shines) with seven rays
!

37. With the light with which the gods, having


cooked the porridge for the Brahma/<!as, ascended

IX.

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS FOR BRAHMANS.

85

world of the pious, with that would

to heaven, to the

we go

world of the pious, ascending to the


to the highest firmament

light,

to the

XII,

The preparation

3.

of the brahmaudana, the

porridge given as a fee to the Brahmans.


1

male

(Thyself) a male, step thou upon the hide of the


(steer)
go, call thither all that is dear to thee
:

At whatever age ye two formerly did first unite


marriage), may that age be your common lot
Varna's kingdom

(in
in

Your

sight shall be as clear (as formerly), your


as
abundant, your lustre as great, your
strength
When Agni, the (funeral-)
vitality as manifold
2.

pyre, fastens himself upon the corpse, then as a pair


ye shall rise from the (cooked) porridge
!

3.

to

Come

ye together

the gods, and in

upon the road

in this world,

Yama's realms

By

purifica-

tions purified call ye together the offspring that has

sprung from you


4.

Around

the

water united,

sit

ye

down,

around this living (father) and the waters


that refresh the living!
Partake of these (waters),
and of that porridge which the mother of you two
children

cooks, and which

is

called

am/

zta

(ambrosia)
5. The porridge which the father of you two, and
which the mother cooks, unto freedom from defilement
!

and foulness of speech, that porridge with a hundred


streams (of ghee), leading to heaven, has penetrated
with might both the hemispheres of the world.
In that one of the two hemispheres and the
two heavenly worlds, conquered by the pious, which
6.

especially

abounds

in light,

and

is

rich

in

honey,

in

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

86

come together with

that do ye in the fulness of time


your children
!

7.

Keep

ever on

an easterly direction

in

this

is

When your
cooked porridge has been prepared on the fire, hold
together, O man and wife, that ye may guard it
8. When ye shall have reached the southerly
the region that the faithful cling to

direction, turn

associated

ye to

with the

this vessel

In that

fathers,

Yama,

give abundant

shall

protection to your cooked porridge


9. This westerly direction is especially favoured
!

in it Soma is ruler and consoler.


To this hold,
attach yourselves to the pious
then as a pair ye
shall rise from the cooked porridge
:

10.

The

make our realm


The
uppermost

northerly direction shall

the very uppermost, in offspring


with all (our kin),
purusha is the metre pahkti
endowed with all their limbs, may we be united
!

This 'firm' direction (nadir) is Vira^" (brilreverence be to her may she be kind to
liancy)
children
and to me
my
Mayest thou, O goddess
11.

Aditi,

who

holdest

all

treasures, as an alert guardian

guard the cooked porridge


12. As a father his children do thou,
(O earth),
embrace us may gentle winds blow upon us here
!

on earth

Then

ties (the sacrificer

the porridge which the two diviniand his wife) are here preparing

for us shall take note of our religious fervour


our truth

and

13.

Whatever

the

black

bird,

that

has come

stealthily, has touched of that which has


stuck to the rim, or whatever the wet-handed slave-

hither

does pollute
mortar and pestle

may

girl

ye,

waters, purify (that)

IX.

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS FOR BRAHMANS.


this sturdy press-stone, with

May

14.

1S7

broad bot-

tom, purified by the purifiers, beat away the Rakshas


Settle upon the skin, afford firm protection
may
!

man and wife not come to grief in their children


15. The (pestle of) wood has come to us together
!

with the gods

Up

Fisa&as.

through

it

it

it

drives

away the Rakshas and

shall rise, shall let its voice

us conquer
cattle clothed

let

all

the worlds

resound

itself in sevenfold strength,


The
that
are sleek and those that
them
those among
The thirty-three gods attend them
are poor.

16.

mayest thou, (O
world

To

the bright world of heaven thou shalt lead


(there) let us be united with wife and children

1 7.

us

cattle),

guide us to the heavenly

take her hand,

may

she follow

Nirr/ti (destruction), nor Arati

mastery over us

me

there

neither

(grudge), shall gain

May we

get past the evil Grahi (seizure)!


do thou, (O pestle), let thy
darkness
Casting aside
lovely voice resound; do not, O wooden tool, when
do not mutilate the grain devoted
raised, do injury
18.

to the

gods

All-embracing, about to be covered with ghee,


Take hold
enter, (O pot), as a co-dweller this space
of the winnowing-basket, that has been grown by
19.

the rain
20.

the spelt and the chaff it shall sift out


regions are constructed after the
!

Three

pattern of the Brahmawa yonder heaven, the earth,


and the atmosphere. Take the (soma-) shoots, and
hold one another, (O man and wife)
They (the
shoots) shall swell (with moisture), and again go
back into the winnowing-basket
:

21.

Of manifold

variegated

colours

are

the

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

88

animals, one colour hast thou, (O porridge), when


Push these (soma-) shoots
successfully prepared.
the press-stone shall purify
upon this red skin
;

them

as the

washer-man

his clothes

Thee, the (pot of) earth, I place upon the


your substance is the same, though thine,
(O pot), is modified. Even though a blow has
cracked or scratched thee, do not therefore burst
with this verse do I cover that up
I unite
23. Gently as a mother embrace the son
22.

earth

thee, (pot of) earth, with the earth


Mayest thou,
the hollow pot, not totter upon the altar, when thou
!

by the tools of sacrifice and the ghee


24. May Agni who cooks thee protect thee on the
east, Indra with the Maruts protect thee on the south!
May Varu^a on the west support thee upon thy foundation, may Soma on the north hold thee together

art pressed

25. Purified by the purifiers, the (waters) flow pure


from the clouds, they reach to the spaces of heaven,
and of the earth. They are alive, refresh the living,
and are firmly rooted may Agni heat them, after
:

they have been poured into the vessel


26. From heaven they come, into the earth they
penetrate from the earth they penetrate into the
!

May

atmosphere.
selves further

world
27.

may

now

pure, yet purify themthey conduct us to the heavenly

they,

Whether ye

are over-abundant or just

suffi-

cook,
cient, ye are surely clear, pure, and immortal
ye waters, instructed by the husband and wife,
:

obliging and helpful, the porridge

28. Counted drops penetrate into the earth, commensurate with the breaths of life and the plants.
The uncounted golden (drops), that are poured into

IX.

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS FOR P>RAHMANS.

89

(the porridge), have, (themselves) pure, established

complete purity.

The

29.

boiling waters rise and sputter, cast

foam and many bubbles.


this grain, as a

woman who

the proper season

up

Unite, ye waters, with

beholds her husband in

up (the grains) as they settle at the


them mingle their inmost parts with
the waters
The water here I have measured with
measured
was the grain, so as to be according
cups
Stir

30.

bottom

let

to these regulations.

Hand

31.

over

the

sickle,

with

haste

bringfor
the
without
promptly (the grass
barhis);
giving
pain let them cut the plants at the joints
They
whose kingdom Soma rules, the plants, shall not
!

harbour anger against us


32. Strew a new barhis for the porridge
pleasing
to its heart, and lovely to its sight it shall be
Upon
!

it

the gods together with the goddesses shall enter

down

settle

eat

it

to this (porridge)

in

proper order, and

(instrument of) wood, settle down upon the


strewn barhis, in keeping with the divinities and the
33.

Well shaped, as

by a carpenter
with
his
is
form.
axe,
(Tvash/ar)
thy
Longing for
this (porridge) the (gods) shall be seen about the

agnish/oma

vessel

rites

if

autumns the treasurer (of the porridge)


shall fetch it, by the cooked grain he shall obtain
heaven the parents and the children shall live upon
34.

In sixty

it.

Bring thou

of Agni

this

(man) to heaven, into the presence

35. (Thyself) a holder, (O pot), hold on to the


foundation of the earth
thee, that art immoveable
:

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

I90

the gods (alone) shall move


Man and wife, alive,
with living children, shall remove thee from the
!

hearth of the
36.

as

fire

Thou

many

Dip ye

hast conquered and reached all worlds


as are our wishes, thou hast satisfied them.

in,

and spoon

stirring stick

porridge) upon a single dish

Place

it

(the

(ghee) upon it, let it spread forth, anoint


this dish with ghee
As the lowing cow her young
that craves the breast, ye gods shall greet with

Lay

37.

sounds of satisfaction this (porridge)


38. With ghee thou hast covered
!

this place (for the porridge)

afar to heaven!

eagle

gods

Upon

shall offer

Whatever the

39.

it

it

may
shall

hast

it,

made

peerless, spread
rest the mighty

it,

to the divinities

wife cooks aside

from thee,

(O husband), or the husband (cooks) unbeknown of


to both of you it
thee, O wife, mix that together
:

shall

belong

40.

bring it together into a single place


of her children as dwell upon the
!

As many

and the sons that have been begotten by him,


call up to the dish
on shall come
the young knowing their nest
41. The goodly streams, swelling with honey,
mixed with ghee, the seats of ambrosia, all these
does he obtain, ascends to heaven. In sixty autumns
earth,

all

those ye shall

the treasurer (of the porridge) shall fetch it


42. The treasurer shall fetch this treasure
!

outsiders round about

shall

not control

it

all

The

heaven-directed porridge, that has been presented


and deposited by us, in three divisions has reached
the three heavens.
43.

May Agni

flesh-devouring

burn the ungodly Rakshas

the

Pi^a/a shall have nothing here to

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS FOR BRAHMANS.

IX.

191

We

drive him away, hold him afar from


partake of!
us the Adityas and Angiras shall stay near it
A
44. To the Adityas and the Angiras do I offer
:

Do ye two,
honey, mixed with ghee.
and
with
clean
without
hands,
(man
wife),
having
injured a Brahma;za, performing pious deeds, go to
that heavenly world
this (food of)

would obtain this highest part of it (the


45.
porridge), the place from which the highest lord
Pour butter upon it, anoint it
permeates (the all).
I

with plentiful ghee


the Angiras

here

this

is

our share,

fit

for

For the sake of

and holy strength do


this porridge as a hoarded treasure
to the gods
it shall not be lost to us in
gaming or
in the assembly
do not let it go to any other
46.

truth

we make over
:

person before
47.
too,

cook, and

my

me

wife, at

my

give

(to

the Brahmans), and so,

religious rite

and

With

practice.

the birth of a son the world of children has arisen


(for

you)

do ye two hold on to a

beyond (your years)

life

that extends

48. In that place exists no guilt, and no duplicity,


not even if he goes conspiring with his friends.

This

full

dish of ours has here been deposited

the

cooked (porridge) shall come back again to him that


cooks it
49. Kind deeds we shall perform for our friends
!

all

that hate us shall

go

to

darkness

(hell)

As

cow, and (strong) steer, they (man and


wife) shall during every successive period of their
lives drive away man-besetting death
(fruitful)

50.

lives

The

fires (all)

in plants,

and

know one

another, that which

lives in the waters,

and

all

the

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

192

gods that glow upon the heaven. The gold


becomes the light of him that cooks (the

(light-)

(here)

porridge).

This (naked

51.

upon man

skin)

(alone), all

among

the hides

Clothe

yourselves, (ye Brahmans), in


garments (even) the face of the porridge
:

spun garment

What

is

born

other animals are not naked.


sheltering
a home-

is

falsehood

thou

shalt

speak at play
and in the assembly, or the falsehood that thou
shalt speak through lust for gain
-put on together,
52.

(O man and
it

same garment, deposit upon

wife), this

every blemish

53. Produce rain, go to the gods, let smoke arise


from (thy) surface
all-embracing, about to be
covered with ghee, enter as a co-dweller this
;

place

In

54.

many ways heaven assumes

within itself

a different form, according to circumstances.


It (the
laid
has
aside
its
black
form,
heaven)
purifying itself
to a bright (form)

thee into the

the red form do

tion, to

sacrifice for

fire.

Thee here we hand over

55.

Agni as sovereign

to the eastern direc-

lord, to the

black serpent

as guardian, to Aditya as bowman


do ye guard it
for us, until we arrive
To the goal here he shall
:

old age shall hand us over to


then shall we be united with the cooked

lead us, to old age

death

(porridge)
56.

Thee here we hand over

to

the southern

direction, to Indra as sovereign lord, to the serpent


that is striped across as guardian, to
as bow-

Yama

man

do ye guard

goal here, &c.

it

for us, until

we

arrive

To

the

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS FOR BRAHMANS.

IX.

Thee here we hand over

57.

93

to the western direc-

Varuz/a as sovereign lord, to the pWdaku-

tion, to

serpent as guardian, to food as bowman do ye guard


it for us, until we arrive.
To the goal here, &c.
:

Thee here we hand over

58.

direction, to

Soma

to

as sovereign lord, to the sva^a-

serpent as guardian, to the lightning as

do ye guard

it

northern

the

we

for us, until

bowman

To

arrive.

the goal

here, &c.
59.

Thee here we hand over

to the direction of the

Vishnu as sovereign

lord, to the serpent

nadir, to

with black-spotted neck as guardian, to the plants


as

bowmen

To

do ye guard

for us, until

it

we

arrive.

the goal here, &c.

Thee here we hand over

60.

to the direction of

the zenith, to B/'/haspati as sovereign lord, to the


light-coloured serpent as guardian, to the rain as

bowman

To

do ye guard

it

for us, until

we

arrive.

the goal here, &c.

IX,

Removal of

3.

a house that has been presented

to a priest as sacrificial reward.


1.

The

fastenings of the buttresses, the supports,

and also of the connecting beams of the house, that


abounds in treasures, do we loosen.
2.

(house)

rich

in

all

treasures

the

fetter

which has been bound about thee, and the knot


which has been fastened upon thee, that with my
charm do I undo, as Brzhaspati (undid) Vala.

drawn thee together, pressed


thee together, placed firm knots upon thee.
Skil3.

fully,

builder) has

(The
as

the

animal), do
[42]

we

priest

who

butchers

(the

sacrificial

with Indra's aid disjoint thy limbs.


o

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

194

From

thy beams, thy bolts, thy frame, and


from thy sides, (O house) abounding in
treasures, do we loosen the fastenings.
4.

thy thatch

The

fastenings of the dove-tailed (joints), of


the reed (-covering), of the frame-work, do we loosen
5.

here from the


6.

The

'

mistress of dwelling.'

ropes which they have tied within thee


do we loosen from thee be thou

for comfort, these

our persons, O mistress of dwelling,


after thou hast (again) been erected
propitious to

7.

receptacle for

Soma, a house

for Agni, a seat

for the mistresses (of the house), a seat (for the priests),
a seat for the gods art thou,
goddess house

Thy covering of wicker-work, with thousand


eyes, stretched out upon thy crown, fastened down
and laid on, do we loosen with (this) charm.
8.

9.

He who receives thee as


whom thou hast been

and he by

gift,

built,

house,

both these,

O mistress

of dwelling, shall live attaining old age


Return to him in the other world, firmly

10.

bound, ornamented, (thou house), which


limb by limb, and joint by joint

we

loosen

He who

11.

built thee,

O house, brought

together

(thy) timbers, he, a Pra^apa'ti on high, did construct


house, for his progeny (pra^ayai).
thee,

We

12.

obeisance

render obeisance to him (the builder);


to the giver, the lord of the house
;

obeisance to Agni who serves (the


obeisance to thy (attendant) man

sacrifice)

and

Reverence to the cattle and the horses, and


to that which is born in the house
Thou that hast
in
art
rich
produced,
offspring, thy fetters do we
13.

loosen.
14.

Thou

dost

shelter

Agni

within,

(and)

the

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS FOR BRAHMANS.

IX.

domestics together with the


produced, art

rich

in

cattle.

Thou

95

that hast

do we

offspring, thy fetters

loosen.

The expanse which

between heaven and


earth, with that do I receive as a gift this house of
thine
the middle region which is stretched out
from the sky, that do I make into a receptacle for
treasures
with that do I receive the house for
15.

is

this one.

of milk, fixed upon the


house, do
earth, erected, holding food for all,
thou not injure them that receive thee as a gift
16.

Full of nurture,

full

17.

in

Enveloped

grass, clothed

in

reeds,

like

erected
night does the house lodge the cattle
thou dost stand upon the earth, like a she-elephant,
;

firm of foot.
18.

The

of thee

part

mats unfolding do

19.

seers,

was covered with


that hast been

that

Thee

loosen.

by Varu^a may Mitra uncover

enfolded

morning

in

the

built

by
two

The house built with pious word,


erected
may Indra and Agni,

the

immortals, protect the house, the seat of Soma


20. Chest is crowded upon chest, basket upon
!

basket
all

man

there mortal

things spring.
In the house which

21.

is

is

begotten from
built with

whom

two facades,

in the house with eight


four facades, six facades
facades, with ten facades, in the mistress of dwell;

'

inor,'

Agfni rests as

22.

me,

if in

the

womb.

Turning towards thee that


house,

come

art turned towards

to thee that injurest

For Agni and the waters, the


order, are within.

first

me

not.

door to divine

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

196

These

23.

waters, free from disease, destructive

of disease, do
I

enter in

Agni

The chambers do

bring here.

company with the immortal

in

upon

(fire).

Do

thou not fasten a fetter upon us though


a heavy load, become thou light
As a bride do we
24.

carry thee,

From

25.

house, wherever we please.


the

easterly direction

of the

house

reverence (be) to greatness, hail to the gods


are to be addressed with hail

who

From the southerly direction of the house, &c.


From the westerly direction of the house, &c.
From the northerly direction of the house, &c.
From the firm direction (nadir) of the

26.

27.

28.

29.

house, &c.

From

30.

house, &c.

the

upright direction (zenith) of the

From every

31.

direction of the

(be) to greatness, hail to the


addressed with hail

house reverence

gods who are

to be

Brahmanical prayer at the receipt of

VI, 71.

gifts.
1.

The

places,

varied food which

my gold, my horses,

and sheep

ceived as a

consume

and, too,

in

many

my cows,

goats,

everything whatsoever that


gift

have

re-

Agni, the priest, render that

may

an auspicious offering
2. The gift that has come to me by sacrifice, or
without sacrifice, bestowed by the Fathers, granted
by men, through which my heart, as it were, lights
up with joy may Agni, the priest, render that an
!

auspicious offering!
3. The food that

I,

gods, improperly consume,

IX.

PRAYERS AND IMPRECATIONS FOR BRAHMANS.

97

promise, intending to give of it (to the


Brahmans), or not to give of it, by the might of
mighty Vaisvanara (Agni) may (that) food be for
(the food)

me

auspicious and

XX,

of honey

full

127.

kuntapa-hymn.

A.
Listen, ye folks, to this: (a song) in praise of

1.

a hero shall be sung

(cows) did we get (when


among the Riuamas,
2.

Whose

Six thousand and ninety


we were) with Kaurama

twice ten buffaloes

move

right along,

together with their cows the height of his chariot


just misses the heaven which recedes from its touch.
;

3. This one (Kaurama) presented the seer with


a hundred jewels, ten chaplets, three hundred steeds,
and ten thousand cattle.

B.

chanter, disport thyself as


a
thy tongue glides
upon
flowering tree
over
the
lips as a razor over the strop.
quickly
5. The chanters with their pious song hurry on
4.

Disport thyself,

a bird

cows at home are


home the cows do they attend.
blithely as

6.

Bring hither,

earns cattle and

their children,

and

at

chanter, thy poem, that which


earns good things
Among the
!

gods (kings) place thy voice as a manly archer his


arrow

C.

Listen ye to the high praise of the king who


rules over all peoples, the god who is above mortals,
7.

of Vaiivanara Parikshit

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

I98
'

Parikshit has procured for us a secure dwelling, when he, the most excellent one, went to his
seat.'
(Thus) the husband in Kuru-land, when he
8.

founds his household, converses with his wife.


'

9.

What may

drink, or liquor
in the
10.

the

'

kingdom of

bring to thee, curds, stirred


(Thus) the wife asks her husband
I

king- Parikshit.

Like light the ripe barley runs over beyond

mouth

merrily

in

(of the

the

The

thrive

people
Parikshit.
of
kingdom
king
vessels).

D.
1

1.

move

Indra has awakened the poet, saying: 'Arise,


about, and sing of me, the strong, verily, sing
;

the praises

full

every pious one shall

offer thee

'

reward)
Here, O cattle, ye shall be born, here, ye
And Pushan also, who
horses, here, ye domestics
(sacrificial

12.

bestows a thousand (cows) as

down

settles
13.

and may

their

hostile folk,

sion of
14.

we

them

We

Indra, not suffer harm,

owner not
Indra,

may

suffer

ay the

shout to the hero with

harm

the thief not gain posses-

(shout) with a pleasing song.

our songs

reward,

here.

these cattle,

May

sacrificial

may we

not ever suffer

hymn and
Take
harm

song,
delight in

X.

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPHIC HYMNS.


XII,

i.

Hymn

to

goddess Earth.

Truth, greatness, universal order (rita), strength,


consecration, creative fervour (tapas), spiritual exi

support the earth.


this earth, the mistress of that which was and

altation (brahma), the

May

sacrifice,

broad domain
The earth that has heights, and slopes, and

shall be, prepare for us a


2.

great plains, that supports the plants of manifold


virtue, free from the pressure that comes from the

midst of men, she shall spread out for


herself for us

us,

and

fit

upon which the sea, and the rivers


and the waters, upon which food and the tribes of
men have arisen, upon which this breathing, moving-

The

3.

life exists,

4.

upon

earth

shall afford us

precedence

which supports

the

manifold

things, shall afford us cattle

also

in

drinking

The earth whose are the four regions of space,


which food and the tribes of men have arisen,
breathing,

moving

and other possessions

earth upon which of old the first men


unfolded themselves, upon which the gods overcame
5.

The

the Asuras, shall procure for us


horses,
6.

and

The

fowls,

(all)

kinds of

good fortune, and glory

earth that supports

all,

cattle,

furnishes wealth,

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

200

the foundation, the golden-breasted resting-place of


all living creatures, she that supports Agni Vaisva-

nara (the fire), and mates with Indra, the bull, shall
furnish us with property
7. The broad earth, which the sleepless gods
!

ever attentively guard, shall milk for us precious


honey, and, moreover, besprinkle us with glory
8. That earth which
formerly was water upon
!

the ocean (of space), which the wise (seers) found


out by their skilful devices whose heart is in the
;

highest heaven, immortal, surrounded by truth, shall


bestow upon us brilliancy and strength, (and place
us) in

supreme sovereignty
9. That earth upon which the attendant waters
jointly flow by day and night unceasingly, shall
!

pour out milk for us

in rich streams, and, moreover,


us
with
besprinkle
glory
10. The earth which the Asvins have measured,
!

upon which Vishnu has stepped

out,

which Indra,

the lord of might, has made friendly to himself; she,


the mother, shall pour forth milk for me, the son
!

1 1.

Thy snowy mountain

earth, shall

be kind to us

heights,
!

and thy

The brown,

forests,

the black,

the red, the multi-coloured, the firm earth, that is


protected by Indra, I have settled upon, not suppressed, not slain, not wounded.
j 2.
Into thy middle set us,
earth, and into thy
navel, into the nourishing strength that has grown

The earth
up from thy body purify thyself for us
is the mother, and I the son of the earth
Par^anya
!

is

the father
13.

The

he, too, shall

earth upon which they (the priests)

in-

upon which they, devoted to


(holy) works, unfold the sacrifice, upon which

close the altar (vedi),


all

save us

X.

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPIIIC HYMNS.

201

are set up, in front of the sacrifice, the sacrificial


posts, erect and brilliant, that earth shall prosper us,
herself prospering
14. Him that hates us,
!

against us, him that

mind and

is

earth,

him that

battles

hostile towards us with his

weapons, do thou subject to us,


anticipating (our wish) by deed
15. The mortals born of thee live on thee, thou
his

Thine,
supportest both bipeds and quadrupeds.
O earth, are these five races of men, the mortals,
upon whom the rising sun sheds undying light with
his rays.
1

us

These creatures

6.

do thou,

Upon

17.

together shall yield milk for


earth, give us the honey of speech
the firm, broad earth, the all-begetting

mother of the
law,

upon

plants, that

her, propitious

pass our lives


18.

all

is

supported by (divine)
kind, may we ever

and

great gathering-place thou, great (earth),

great haste, commotion, and agitation


are upon thee.
Great Indra protects thee unceasDo thou, O earth, cause us to brighten as if
ingly.
hast

become

at the sight of gold


19.

Agni

(fire)

is

not any one shall hate us


in

the earth, in the plants, the


is in the stones
Agni is

waters hold Agni, Agni


within men, Agnis

(fires)

are within cattle, within

horses.

Agni glows from the

sky, to Agni, the god,


the
The
mortals kindle Agni,
broad
air.
belongs
the bearer of oblations, that loveth ghee.
20.

The earth, clothed in Agni,


shall make me brilliant and alert
22. Upon the earth men give
21.

with dark knees,

sacrifice,

the

prepared oblation

the gods the


upon the earth

to

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

202

men live pleasantly by food. May this earth


us
breath and life, may she cause me to reach
give
old age
mortal

The

earth, that has arisen upon


fragrance,
thee, which the plants and the waters hold, which
23.

and the Apsaras have partaken


not any one shall
with that make me fragrant

the Gandharvas
of,

hate us

That fragrance of

24.

into the lotus,

thine which has entered

that fragrance,

earth,

which the

immortals of yore gathered up at the marriage of


not any one
Surya, with that make me fragrant
:

shall hate us

That fragrance of thine which is in men, the


and charm that is in male and female,

25.

loveliness

is in steeds and heroes, that which is in


the wild animals with trunks (elephants), the lustre
that is in the maiden, O earth, with that do thou

that which

not any one shall hate us


26. Rock, stone, dust is this earth

blend us

this earth

is

To this golden-breasted
supported, held together.
earth I have rendered obeisance.
The

27.

ever stand

we

earth,

upon

whom

the forest-sprung trees

firm, the all-nourishing,

compact

earth,

do

invoke.

Rising or sitting, standing or walking, may


not stumble with our right or left foot upon the
earth
28.

we

29.
soil

To

that has

exaltation).

grown

Upon

prosperity, food,

earth
30.

speak, to the ground, the


through the brahma (spiritual

the pure earth

thee, that holdest nourishment,

and ghee, we would

settle

down,

Purified the waters shall flow for our bodies;

X.

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPUIC HYMNS.

what flows

we

dislike

203

from us that do we deposit upon him


with a purifier, O earth, do I purify

off
:

myself!
31.

Thy

easterly regions,

and thy northern, thy


and thy western, shall

southerly (regions), O earth,


be kind to me as I walk (upon thee)
have been placed into the world not fall

May

down

that

32. Do not drive us from the west, nor from the


east
not from the north, and not from the south
waylayers shall
Security be thou for us, O earth
not find us, hold far away (their) murderous weapon!
!

33.

As long

as

look out upon thee,

earth,

with Surya (the sun) as my companion, so long shall


my sight not fail, as year followeth upon year
34. When, as I lie, I turn upon my right or left
!

side,

ribs

earth

when

stretched out

upon thee pressing against

(us),

we

lie

do

not,

with our

earth,

that liest close to everything, there injure us


earth, I dig out of thee, quickly
35. What,
shall that grow again
pure one,
may I not,
heart
not
vital
thy
pierce thy
spot, (and)
!

36.

Thy summer, O

earth, thy rainy season, thy

autumn, winter, early spring, and spring

thy decreed
yearly seasons, thy days and nights shall yield us
milk!
;

Sy. The pure earth that starts in fright away


from the serpent, upon whom were the fires that

are within the waters, she that delivers (to destruction) the blasphemous Dasyus, she that takes the
side of Indra, not of Vr/tra, (that earth) adheres to

Sakra (mighty Indra), the lusty


38.

Upon whom

bull.

rests the sacrificial

hut (sadas)

and the (two) vehicles that hold the soma


dhane), in

whom

the sacrificial post

is

(havir-

fixed,

upon

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

204

whom

Brahma^as

the

praise (the gods) with r/ks

and samans, knowing

(also) the ya^ur- formulas upon


the serving-priests (ritvxg) are employed so
that Indra shall drink the soma
;

whom

Upon whom

the seers of yore, that created


39.
the beings, brought forth with their songs the cows,
they the seven active (priests), by means of the satraofferings, the sacrifices,

(tapas)

40.

that

and

(their) creative fervour

May

we

earth point out to us the wealth

this

crave

may Bhaga

(fortune)

add

his help,

may Indra come here as (our) champion!


41. The earth upon whom the noisy mortals sing
and dance, upon

whom

they

sounds the roaring drum,

fight,

shall

whom

upon
drive

forth

re-

our

enemies, shall make us free from rivals


42. To the earth upon whom are food, and rice
and barley, upon whom live these five races of men,
!

to the earth, the wife of Parganya, that

by

rain,

be reverence

The

is

fattened

upon whose ground the citadels


constructed by the gods unfold themselves, every
43.

earth

region of her that

make
44. The

shall

is

womb

the

of

Pra^apati
pleasant for us
earth that holds treasures manifold in
all,

secret places, wealth, jewels, and gold shall she give


she that bestows wealth liberally, the kindly
to me
;

goddess, wealth shall she bestow upon us


45. The earth that holds people of

manifold

speech, of different customs, according to


their habitations, as a reliable milch-cow that does

varied

not kick, shall she milk for


of wealth

me

a thousand streams

46.

The

serpent, the scorpion with thirsty fangs,

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPHIC HYMNS.

X.

upon thee the worm,


earth, moves in the

that hibernating torpidly lies

and whatever

205

living thing,

rainy season, shall, when it creeps, not creep upon


us
with what is auspicious (on thee) be gracious
:

to us

paths upon which people go, thy


tracks for chariots and wagons to advance, upon

Thy many

47.

which both good and evil men proceed, this road,


free from enemies, and free from thieves, may we
with what is auspicious (on thee) be gracious
gain
:

to us

The

earth holds the fool and holds the wise,


she
endures that good and bad dwell (upon her)
48.

keeps company

with the boar, gives herself up to

the wild hog.

Thy

49.

forest animals, the wild animals

homed

the woods, the man-eating lions, and tigers that


roam; the ula, the wolf, mishap, injury (rz'kshika),
in

and demons

(rakshas),

earth, drive

The Gandharvas,

50.

and Kimidins; the

these,

away from

us

the Apsaras, the Arayas

Pii-a^as

and

earth, hold from us

all

demons

(rakshas),

earth upon whom the biped birds fly


of prey, and
together, the flamingoes, eagles, birds
fowls upon whom Matamvan, the wind, hastens,
as the wind
raising the dust, and tossing the trees

The

51.

blows forth and back the flame bursts after

and night jointly,


52. The earth upon whom day
black and bright, have been decreed, the broad
earth covered and enveloped with rain, shall kindly
place us into every pleasant abode
have here given
53. Heaven, and earth, and air
me expanse Agni, Surya, the waters, and all the
!

gods together have given

me

wisdom.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

206
54.

am

Mighty

upon the

earth,

'Superior' (uttara) by name,

I,

conquering

am

I,

all-conquering,

completely conquering every region.


55. At that time, O goddess, when, spreading
(prathamana) forth, named (przthivi broad ') by
'

the gods, thou didst extend to greatness, then prosperity did enter thee, (and) thou didst fashion the
four regions.
56. In the villages and in the wilderness, in the
in the
assembly-halls that are upon the earth
;

gatherings, and

in the

may we hold

meetings,

forth

agreeably to thee
57. As dust a steed did she, as soon as she was
born, scatter these people, that dwelt upon the
!

earth, she the lovely one, the leader, the guardian


of the world, that holds the trees and plants.
58.

The words

the things
I

am and

do

speak, honied do I speak them


Brilliant
see they furnish me with.

alert

the others that rush (against me)

beat down.

Gentle, fragrant, kindly, with the sweet drink


(kilala) in her udder, rich in milk, the broad earth
59.

together with (her) milk shall give us courage


60.

She whom Visvakarman

(the creator of all)

did search out by means of oblations, when she had


entered the surging (flood of the) atmosphere, she,

the vessel destined to nourish, deposited in a secret


place, became visible (to the gods) and the (heavenly)
mothers.
61.

Thou

art the scatterer of

men, the broadly

expanding Aditi that yields milk according to wish.


What is wanting in thee Pra^apati, first-born of the
divine order (ma), shall supply for thee
62.

Thy

laps,

earth, free

from ailment, free

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPHIC HYMNS.

X.

from disease,
attentively,

shall

be produced

through our long

bali-offerings to thee

63.

mother

a well-founded

operating,

May we

be bearers of

lives,

me down upon

earth, kindly set

place!

With

(father)

heaven

thou wise one, do thou place

happiness and prosperity

XIII,

for us

207

me

co-

into

Prayer for sovereign nower addressed to

1.

the god Rohitg_and his female Rohi/n.


1.

Rise up,

steed, that art within the waters,

Rohita
enter this kingdom, rich in liberal gifts
(the red sun) who has begotten this all, shall keep
!

thee well-supported for sovereignty


2. The steed that is within the waters has risen
!

ascend upon the clans that are sprung from


theej- Furnishing soma, the waters, plants, and cows,
cause thou four-footed and two-footed creatures to

up

enter here

Do

Prism (the
Rohita
cloud), allied with Indra, crush the enemies
that
abundant
the
shall hear you,
thrice
give
gifts,
3.

ye, strong Maruts, children of

seven Maruts,
ment)
4.

who

take delight in sweet (nourish-

has

climbed

Rohita

the

ascended them, he, the embryo

heights,

he

has

of

women, (has
the
of
births.
womb
Closely united with
ascended)
six broad (directhe
found
out
these women they
spying out a road he has brought hither
tions)
;

sovereignty.
5. Hither to thee Rohita has brought sovereignty;
he has dispersed the enemies freedom from danger
has resulted for thee. To thee heaven and earth
:

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

208

together with the revati and i-akvari-stanzas shall


yield gifts at will

earth
there
6. Rohita produced heaven and
Paramesh//nn (the lord on high) extended the thread
;

(of the sacrifice).

There A^a Ekapada

footed goat, the sun) did fix himself; he


the heavens and earth with his strength.
7.

(the onefirm

made

Rohita made firm heaven and earth, by him

the (heavenly) light was established, by him the


firmament.
By him the atmosphere and the spaces
were measured out, through him the gods obtained
immortality.

Rohita did ponder the multiform (universe)


while preparing (his) climbings and advances. Having
ascended the heaven with great might, he shall
anoint thy royalty with milk and ghee
8.

9. All thy climbings, advances, and all thy ascents


with which thou, (Rohita, -4k@ su**) fillest the
-

heavens and the atmosphere, having strengthened


thyself with their brahma and payas (spiritual and
physical essence) do thou keep awake (do thou
watch over) among the people in the kingdom of
the (earthly) Rohita (the king)
!

The

peoples that have originated from thy


tapas (heat, or creative fervour), have followed here
the calf, the gayatri.
They shall enter thee with
10.

kindly spirit

come on
11.

the calf Rohita with

its

mother

shall

High on the firmament Rohita has

stood,

a youth, a sage, begetting all forms.


As Agni he
shines with piercing light, in the third space he did

assume lovely
12.
(fire),

bull

(forms).

with

endowed with

thousand horns, 6"atavedas


sacrifices

of ghee,

carrying

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPHIC HYMNS.

X.

soma upon

implored, not abandon me, nor

abundance

me

for

shall,

when

abandon thee:

in

heroes procure

may

and abundance

in cattle

the generator of the sacrifice, and


to Rohita I offer oblations with voice,

Rohita

13.

he

his back, rich in heroes,

209

is

mouth
To Rohita the gods resort with
ear, and mind.
glad mind he shall cause me to rise through elevaits

from the assembly


Rohita arranged a sacrifice

tion derived
14.

for

Vij-vakarman

from it these brilliant qualities have come to me.


Let me announce thy origin over the extent of the
world
15. Upon thee have ascended the brz'hatf and the
!

upon thee the kakubh with splendour,


c7atavedas.
Upon thee the vasha/-call, whose

paiikti (metres),

syllables

make an

has ascended, upon thee

ush/Aha.,

Rohita with his seed has ascended.


16. This one clothes himself in the
earth,

one clothes himself

this

in

womb

of the

heaven, and

in

the atmosphere.
This one at the station of the
brown (sun) did attain unto the worlds of light.
17.

be pleasant
our couches
our

friend

envelop
18.

(lord of speech), the earth shall

OVa^aspati

in

to us, pleasant our dwelling, agreeable


Right here life's breath shall be to

thee,

life

and

ParameshMin, Agni

lustre

shall

Va/f'aspati, the five

seasons that

we

which have come about as the creation of

have,
Vi.sva-

karman, right here (they and) life's breath shall be


to our friend
thee, O Paramesh///in, Rohita shall
;

envelop
19.

in life

and

lustre!

Va/'aspati,

good cheer and

our stable, children in our

wombs
p

spirit, cattle in

be^et thou

Rigfht

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

2IO
here

breath shall be to our friend

life's

Paramesh^in,

envelop

in life

and

thee,

lustre.

God

Savitar and Agni shall envelop thee,


Mitra and Variwa surround thee with lustre
Tread20.

ing down all powers of grudge come thou hither


thou hast made this kingdom rich in liberal gifts.
21.

Thou,

whom

brindled cow,
with
carries, goest
brilliance,

Rohita,

harnessed at the

side,

the

causing the waters to flow.


22.

Devoted

to

Rohita

Rohmi

is

his

mistress,

with beautiful colour (complexion), great, and lustrous:


through her may we conquer booty of every descrip-

through her win every battle


23. This seat, Rohi/d, belongs to Rohita; yonder
the path on which the brindled (female) goes

tion,

is

Her

the

Gandharvas and the Kasyapas lead

forth,

her the sages guard with diligence.


24. The radiant bay steeds of the sun, the immortal, ever draw the delightful chariot.
Rohita,
the drinker of ghee, the shining god, did enter the

variegated heavens.
25. Rohita, the sharp-horned

bull,

who

surpasses

Agni and surpasses Surya, who props up the earth


and the sky, out of him the gods frame the creations.
26. Rohita ascended the heaven from the great
flood
Rohita has climbed all heights.
;

Create (the cow) that is rich in milk, drips


with ghee
she is the milch-cow of the gods that
does not refuse! Indra shall drink the Soma, there
27.

shall be secure possession


Agni shall sing praises
the enemies do thou drive out
;

28.

Agni

kindled, spreads his flames, fortified

by

ghee, sprinkled with ghee. Victorious, all-conquering


Agni shall slay them that are my rivals
!

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPHIC HYMNS.

X.

He

29.

shall slay

battles against us

them, shall burn the

With

do we burn our rivals.


30. Smite them down,

that

enemy

the flesh-devouring

1 I

Agni

Indra, with the thunder-

Then have I overbolt, with thy (strong) arm


powered my rivals with Agni's brilliant strengths.
31. O Agni. subject our rivals to us; confuse,
!

O
B/zhaspati, the kinsman that is puffed up
Indra and Agni, O Mitra and Varu/za, subjected they
shall be, unable to vent their wrath against us
32. Do thou, god Surya (the sun), when thou
!

beat

risest,

a stone

down my

rivals,

beat them down with

they shall go to the nethermost darkness


calf of Vira<f, the bull of prayers, carry!

The

33.

ing the bright (soma) upon his back, has ascended


the atmosphere.
song accompanied by ghee they

sing to the calf; himself brahma (spiritual exaltation) they swell him with their brahma (prayer).

Ascend

the heavens, ascend the earth


ascend
thou, and possessions ascend
sovereignty
thou Offspring ascend thou, and immortality ascend
thou, unite thy body with Rohita
34.

35. The gods that hold sovereignty, who go


about the sun, with these allied, Rohita, kindly
disposed, shall bestow sovereignty upon thee
!

The

36.
purified by prayer lead thee
forth the bay steeds that travel upon the road carry
thee thou shinest across the swelling ocean.

sacrifices

37.
cattle,

fixed.

births,

In

Rohita

who conquers

wealth, conquers

and conquers booty, heaven and earth are


Of thee that hast a thousand and seven
let me announce the origin over the extent

of the world

38. Glorious thou goest to the intermediate direc-

p 2

l^a-* "3-

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

212

and the directions (of space), glorious (in the


sight) of animals and the tribes of men, glorious in
tions

the lap of the earth, of Aditi

be lovely

may

like Savitar

Being yonder thou knowest (what takes place)

39.

being here thou beholdest these things. Here


(men) behold the inspired sun that shines upon the

here

sky.

40.

god thou

within the flood.

praisest the gods, thou

They

movest

kindle (him), a universal

him the highest sages know.


41. Below the superior (region), above the inferior
(region) here, the cow has arisen supporting (her)
calf by the foot.
Whither is she turned to which

fire

half (of the universe), forsooth, has she

where, forsooth, does she beget


herd

gone away

Verily not

in this

42. One-footed,

two-footed,

four-footed

is

she

eight-footed, nine-footed became she, the thousandsyllabled (consisting of thousand elements) parikti
the oceans from
(quinary stanza) of the universe
:

her flow forth upon (the world).


43. Ascending the heaven,

immortal,

receive

The sacrifices purified by prayer


kindly my song
lead thee forth
the bay steeds that travel upon the
road carry thee.
!

That do I know of thee, O immortal, where


thy march is upon the sky, where thy habitation is
44.

highest heaven.

in the

Surya (the sun) surveys the sky, Surya the


earth, Surya the waters.
Surya is the single eye of
being he has ascended the great heavens.
46. The broad (directions) where the fagots that
45.

fence in (the

fire),

the earth turned itself into a

fire-

X.

altar.
fires,

47.

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPHIC HYMNS.

There Rohita
cold and heat.

13

on for himself these two

laid

Laying on cold and

tains as sacrificial posts, the

knows the (heavenly)

moun-

heat, using the

two

of Rohita who
which (the fires)

fires

light, into

rain (flowed) as ghee, carried out the sacrifice.


48.
light
cold,

The
is

fire

kindled

from

who knows the (heavenly)


by prayer. From it heat, from it

of Rohita

the sacrifice was produced.

it

49. The two fires swelling through prayer, increased through prayer, sacrificed into with prayer
the two fires of Rohita who knows the (heavenly)
;

light,

kindled

through

prayer,

carried

out

the

sacrifice.

50.
in

One

is

deposited in truth, the other

the waters.

The two

the (heavenly) light,


out the sacrifice.

fires of

is

kindled

Rohita who knows

kindled through prayer, carried

which the wind brightens up, and


that which Indra and Brahma^aspati (brighten up),
the two fires of Rohita who knows the (heavenly)
51.

light,

The

fire

kindled

through

prayer,

carried

out

the

sacrifice.

Having fashioned the earth into an altar,


having made the heavens (his) sacrificial reward,
then having made heat into fire, Rohita created all
52.

that has breath through rain (serving) as ghee.

Rain fashioned itself into ghee, heat into fire,


Then Agni by (his) songs
the earth into an altar.
53.

fashioned the high mountains.


of songs the high
54. Having fashioned by means
In thee all
(mountains), Rohita spake to the earth
:

shall
55.

be born, what

The

is

and what

sacrifice first,

shall be.

(and_then) what

is

and

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

14

be was born. From that this all was


and
whatever
here appears, brought hither by
born,

what

shall

the sage Rohita.

He who

56.

kicks a

cow with

who

micturates towards the sun

out

the

shadow

root

thou shalt henceforth not cast a

Thou

57.

and he
of thee do I tear
his foot,

that

across

passest

me, casting thy

shadow against me, between me and the


thee do

tear out the root

not cast a shadow

fire

of

thou shalt henceforth

He, O god Surya, that to-day passes between


thee and me, upon him our evil dream, our foulness,
and our misfortunes do we wipe off.
58.

not miss our way, may we not,


miss
the
sacrifice of him that presses the
Indra,
soma may not the powers of grudge intercept us

May we

59.

The

(guiding) thread stretched out among the


gods, that accomplishes the sacrifice, that, by pour60.

ing oblations,

XI,

5.

may we

attain

jvjr>-

Glorification of the -sun or the primeval


principle, as a Brahman disciple.
,

^H?

1.

The Brahma/arin (Brahmanical

inciting both

hemispheres

disciple) moves
of the world in him the
;

gods are harmonised. He holds the heavens and


the earth, he fills the teacher with creative fervour
(tapas).
2.

The

and

fathers, the divine folk,

all

the gods

severally follow the Brahma/'arin the Gandharvas


did go after him, six thousand three hundred and
;

thirty-three.

fervour.

He

fills

all

the

gods with creative

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPHIC HYMNS.

X.

3.

When

the teacher receives the

215

Brahma/('arin

as a disciple, he places him as a foetus inside (of


He carries him for three nights in his
his body).
belly:

when he

is

born the gods gather about to

see him.

This earth is (his first) piece of firewood, the


heaven the second, and the atmosphere also he fills
4.

The Brahmawith (the third) piece of firewood.


/fcarin fills the worlds with his firewood, his girdle,
his asceticism,

and

his creative fervour.

the
5. Prior to the brahma (spiritual exaltation)
BrahmaMrin was born clothed in heat, by creative
fervour he arose. From him sprung the brahmawam
;

(Brahmanic

life)

and the highest brahma, and

gods together with immortality

all

the

(amrz'ta).

The

Brahma/'arin advances, kindled by the


firewood, .clothed in the skin of the black antelope,
Within the day he
consecrated, with long beard.
6.

passes from the eastern to the northern sea gathering together the worlds he repeatedly shapes them.
the
7. The Brahma/arin, begetting _the brahma,
;

y
waters, the world, Pra4 apat i_J aramesh//nn (he that
stands in the highest place), and Vira^, having
)

become an embryo in the womb of immortality,


having, forsooth, become Indr a, pierced the Asuras.

The

teacher fashioned these two hemispheres


of the world, the broad and the deep, earth and
8.

heaven.
creative

These the Brahma/arin guards with his


in him the gods are harfervour (tapas)
:

monised.
9.

This broad earth and the heaven the Brahma-

Having made
brought hither as alms.
these into two sticks of firewood he reveres them
upon them all beings have been founded.

i'arin

first

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

2l6
10.

One

is

on the hither

side, the

farther side of the back of the heavens

other on the
;

secretly are

deposited the two receptacles of the brahma^am


(Brahmanic life). These the BrahmaMrin protects
his tapas (creative fervour)
understanding^
performs that brahma (spiritual exaltation) solely.

by

ii.

One on

the hither side, the other

he

away from

the earth, do the two Agnis come together between


these two hemispheres (of the world).
To them
adhere the rays firmly
the Brahma/arin by his
;

tapas (creative fervour) enters into the (rays).


12.

Shouting

forth,

thundering,

carries a great penis along the earth.

white

red,

he

The Brahma-

sprinkles seed upon the back of the earth


through it the four directions live.

/'arin

1 3.
Into fire, the sun, the moon, Matamvan (wind),
and the waters, the Brahma^arin places the firewood;
the lights from these severally go into the clouds,
from them come sacrificial butter, the purusha
(primeval man), rain, and water.
14. Death is the teacher, (and) Varima, Soma, the
the clouds were the warriors by these
plants, milk
this light has been brought hither.
15. Varu;/a, having become the teacher, at home
Whatever he desired
prepares the ghee solely.
from Pra^-apati, that the Brahma^arin furnished, as
Mitra (a friend) from his own atman (spirit, or
:

person).
16.

The

BrahmaZ-arin

is

the teacher, the Brahma-

Zarin Pra^apati.
ragciti)

^ra^apati rules (shines forth, vi


Virag- (heavenly power, or light ) became

Indra, the ruler.


py. ThrouglTTToiy disciplehood (brahma/'aryam),
through tapas (creative fervour), the king protects

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPHIC HYMNS.

X.

his

kingdom.

21 7

The

teacher by (his own) brahmaseeks (finds) the Brahma/arin.

/aryam (holy life)


1 8.
Through holy disciplehood the maiden obtains
a young husband, through holy disciplehood the
steer, the

horse seeks to obtain fodder.

disciplehood, through creative


drove
the
fervour,
away death. Indra, forsooth,
gods
by his holy disciplehood brought the light to the gods.
19.

Through holy

20.

The

plants, that

which was and

shall be,

day
and night, the tree, the year along with the seasons,
have sprung from the BrahmaMrin.
21. The earthly and the heavenly animals, the
wild and the domestic, the wingless and the winged
(animals), have sprung from the Brahma/'arin.
All the creatures of Pra^apati (the creator)
All these
severally carry breath in their souls.
22.

the brahma, which has been brought hither in the


Braliina^arin, protects.
23. This, that was set into

motion by the gods,


insurmountable, that moves shining, from it
has sprung the brahmaz/am (Brahmanical life), the
highest brahma, and all the gods, together with
that

is

immortality (amnta).
Brahma/'arin
24. 25. The

carries

the

shining
the gods are woven.
Proand
as
well
as
ducing in-breathing
out-breathing,
through-breathing speech, mind, heart, brahma, and
wisdom, do thou furnish us with sight, hearing, glory,

brahma

into this

all

food, semen, blood,


26.

and belly

These things the Brahma/farin fashioned upon

the back of the (heavenly) water.


He stood in the
sea__kindlcd wi th tapas (creative fervour). He, when

he has bathed, shines vigorously upon the


brown and ruddy.

earth,

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

2l8

XI,

Pra^a,

4.

life

or breath, personified as the

supreme
Reverence

1.

is

whom all

this (universe)
lord
of the all, on
the

to Pra/^a, to

who has become

subject,

whom

spirit.

the

all is

supported
Reverence, O Pra/za, to thy roaring (wind),

2.

reverence,

Pra^a, to thy thunder, reverence,

Pra//a, to thy lightning, reverence,

rain

Pra/^a, to thy

3.

When

thunder,

Pra;/a calls aloud to the plants with his

they are fecundated, they conceive, and

then are produced abundant (plants).


4. When the season has arrived, and Pra/^a calls
aloud to the plants, then everything rejoices, whatsoever
5.

rain,

is

upon the

When

earth.

Pra/^a has watered the great earth with


'

then the beasts rejoice

forsooth,

we

shall

now

(they think)

strength,

obtain.'

When

they had been watered by Pra^a, the


thou hast, forsooth, proplants spake in concert
made
our
hast
us all fragrant.'
thou
life,
longed
6.

'

thee coming, reve7. Reverence be, O Pra/^a, to


reverence to thee standing,
rence to thee going
and reverence, too, to thee sitting
8. Reverence be to thee, O Pra;/a, when thou
;

breathest in (pra;/ate), reverence when thou breathest out


Reverence be to thee when thou art turned
!

away, reverence to thee when thou art turned


hither to thee, entire, reverence be here
9. Of thy dear form, O Pra;<ta, of thy very dear
!

form, of the healing power that


us, that we may live
!

is

thine, give unto

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPHIC HYMNS.

X.

19

Pra/za clothes the creatures, as a father his

10.

dear son.

Prawa, truly, is the lord of


breathes, and does not breathe.
Pra/^a

11.

is

death,

Pra/^a

all,

all

that

The gods

fever.

is

of

Pra^a shall place the truth-speaker


worship Pra^a.
in the highest world
!

Pra^a

2.

is

(the divinity that guides)

verily

is

lustre), Pra/^a is

Vira^J^qwer,

sun and moon.

DeshM

worship Pra;/a. Pra;<?a


They call Pra^a PragapalL.
:

all

Rice and barley are in-breathing and out-

13.

Pra^a is called a steer.


In-breathing,
founded upon barley rice is called out-

breathing.
forsooth,

is

breathing.

Man breathes
When

14.

womb.

the

then

thou,

Prav/a,

when

within

quickenest him,

he born again.

is

15.

out and breathes in

They

Pra/<ta J^ia4ar4 ?vaft


4

call

(the

wind);

The
Pra^a, forsooth, is called Vata (the wind).
and
the
is
the
future,
all, verily
past
supported upon
Pra^a.
The

holy (atharva/^a) plants, the magic (angirasa) plants, the divine plants, and those produced
16.

by men, spring

forth,

when

thou,

Pra^a, quick-

enest them.
1

When

Pra^a has watered the great earth with


then the plants spring forth, and also every sort

7.

rain,

of herb.
18.

thee,

him

Whoever, O Pra;/a, knows this regarding


and (knows) on what thou art supported, to

all shall offer

19.

As

all

tribute in

yonder highest world.

these creatures,

Pra;/a, offer thee

tribute, so

to

they shall offer tribute (in yonder world)


him who hears thee, O far-famed one
20. He moves as an embryo within the gods
!

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

20

having arrived, and being in existence, he is born


again.
Having arisen he enters with his mights the
present and the future, as a father (goes to) his son.

When

21.

as a

swan he

rises

from the water he

does not withdraw his one

If in truth he were
foot.
withdraw it, there would be neither to-day, nor
to-morrow, no night and no day, never would the

to

dawn

appear.

With

eight wheels, and one felloe he moves,


a
thousand sounds (elements), upward in
containing
the east, downward in the west.
With (his) half he
22.

produced the whole world

what

is

the visible sign

of his (other) half?

He who

23.

rules over this

(all)

derived from

every source, and over everything that moves


reverence be to thee, O Pra/m, that wieldest a swift

bow

against others (the enemies)

May

24.

Prawa,

who

rules over this

(all)

derived

from every source, and over everything that moves,


(may he) unwearied, strong through the brahma,
adhere to me
25. Erect he watches in those that sleep, nor does
he lie down across. No one has heard of his sleep!

ing in those that sleep.


26.
Pra/za, be not turned

shalt not

be other than myself!

the waters
I

may
IX,

(fire),

thee,

away from me, thou


As the embryo of

Pra^a, do bind to me, that

live.

2.

Prayer to

Kama

(love), personified as

a primordial power.

To

the bull that slays the enemy, to Kama, do


render tribute with ghee, oblation, and (sacrificial)
1.

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPHIC HYMNS.

X.

Do

melted butter.
tolled, hurl

221

thou, since thou hast been ex-

down my enemies by thy

great might

2. The evil dream which is offensive to my mind


and eye, which harasses and does not please me,
that (dream) do I let loose upon my enemy.

praised Kama may I prevail!


Evil dreams,
Kama, and misfortune,

Having
3.

childlessness, ill-health,
lord, let loose
4.

upon him that designs

Drive them away,

Kama,

driven

them away,

enemies

nethermost darkness, do thou,

evil against us

thrust

Kama may they that are my


trouble
When they have been
their dwelling-places
5. Th at milch-cow.

O Kama,

trouble, do thou, a strong

and

fall

into

into the

Agni, burn up

ca ll Va/

Kama, whom

or

Virar_ (ruling,
said to be thy daughter

enemies
breath,
a wide birth
;

cattle,

the

sages

resplendent speech), is
by her drive away my

and

life

shall give

them

With

strength of Kama, Indra, king


Varuwa, and Vishu, with the impelling force (savena)
of Savitar, with the priestly power of Agni, do
6.

the

drive forth the enemies, as a skilled steersman

a boat.
7.

My

sturdy guardian, strong

me

Kama,

shall pro-

freedom from enmity


May the
gods collectively be my refuge, may all the gods
respond to this, my invocation
8. Taking
pleasure in this (sacrificial) melted
butter, and ghee, do ye, (O gods), of whom Kama
is the highest, be joyful in this place, procuring for
me full freedom from enmity
9. O Indra and Agni, and Kama, having formed
an alliance, do ye hurl down my enemies when
cure for

full

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

22 2

they have fallen into the nethermost darkness, do


thou, O Agni, burn up after them their dwellingplaces
10.

mies, hurl

Kama, those that are my enethem down into blind darkness. Devoid
without sap let them all be they shall

Slay thou,

of vigour,
not live a single day
ii. Kama has slain those that are

a broad space has he furnished


May the four directions of space

and the
12.

They

(the

its

returning again for those


our missiles.

down

like a

There

who have been

me,

is

struck

no

by

a defence, Indra a defence, Soma a


May the gods, who by their defence ward

defence.

14.

moorings

me

to

in.

is

Agni

off (the

shall float

enemies)

enemies,

bow down

broad (regions) carry ghee to

six

boat cut loose from

13.

me

my

to thrive

enemy), ward him

With

his

men

off!

reduced, driven out, the hated

shunned by his own friends And


(enemy)
down upon the earth do the lightnings alight may
the strong god crush your enemies
15. This mighty lightning supports both moveable and immoveable things, as well as all thunders.
May the rising sun by his resources and his majesty
hurl down my enemies, he the mighty one
shall go,

16.

With

of thine,

that triple-armoured powerful covering


Kama, with the charm that has been

made into an invulnerate armour spread (over thee),


with that do thou drive away those who are my
enemies may breath, cattle, and life give them a
;

wide berth
1

7.

forth

With the weapon with which the god drove


the Asuras, with which Indra led the Dasyus

X.

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPHIC HYMNS.

223

nethermost darkness, with that do thou,


Kama, drive forth far away from this world those
the

to

who

enemies
1 8.
As the gods drove forth the Asuras, as Indra
forced the demons into the nethermost darkness,
thus do thou, O Kama, drive forth far away from
are

my

world those

this

19.

Kama was

who

born at

nor the Fathers, nor


art

are

my

enemies

first;

him neither the gods,

men have

To

equalled.

thou superior, and ever great

to thee,

these

Kama,

do verily offer reverence.


20. As great as are the heavens and earth in
I

extent, as far as the waters

have swept, as

to these art thou superior, &c.


21. Great as are the directions (of space)

fire

far as

and the

intermediate direction on either side, great as are


the regions and the vistas of the sky to these art
;

thou superior, &c.


22.

As many

vaghas and

bees, bats, kururu-worms, as many


tree-serpents as there are to these art
;

thou superior, &c.


Superior art thou to all that winks (lives),
superior to all that stands still (is not alive), superior
To these
to the ocean art thou, O Kama, Manyu
23.

thou superior, &c.


not
24. Not, surely, does the wind equal Kama,

art

not the sun, and not the moon.


art thou superior, &c.
the

fire,

25.

thine,

To

these

With those auspicious and gracious forms of


O Kama, through which what thou wilst

becometh

real,

with these do thou enter into us, and

elsewhere send the evil thoughts

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

24

XIX,

as
Prayer to Kala (time), personified
v***a primordial power.

53.

r^

the steed, runs wit h seven reinsjVays),


The seers,
thousand-eyed, ageless, rich "in seed.

Tim e,

1.

thinking holy thoughts,


(worlds) are his wheels.

mount him,

With seven wheels does

2.

naves has he, immortality


hither

3.

verily,

we

away

carries

been placed upon Time

jar has

see

seven

ride,

He

Time, the

beings (worlds).
hastens onward.

full

existing in

He

forms.

many

these beings (worlds)

all

Time

this

his axle.

these

all

now

eod,

is

the beings

all

him,

carries

him Time

call

they

first

in the highest heaven.

He

4.

surely

did bring hither

the beings

all

all the beings


(worlds), he surely did encompass
Being their father, he became their son
(worlds).
there is, verily, no other force, higher than he.
;

5.

Time begot yonder heaven, Time


That which was, and

these earths.
be,

urged forth by Time, spreads

Time created
Time are all

6.

In

also (begot)
that which shall

out.

Time the sun


Time the eye

the earth, in
beings,

in

burns.

looks

abroad.
7.

In

fixed), in

arrived
8.

Time

In

Time mind is fixed, in Time breath (is


Time names (are fixed) when Time has

all

these creatures rejoice.

Time

is

tapas (creative fervour)

the highest (being

(spiritual exaltation)

is

is

fixed)

fixed

in

Time brahma

in

Time

fixed;

is

the lord of

everything, he was the father of Praff gatL_


9.

By him

this (universe)

was urged

forth,

by him

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPHIC HYMNS.

X.

225

was begotten, and upon him this (universe) was


founded.
Time, truly, having become the brahma
it

(spiritual

exaltation),

s upports

Paramesh//mi

the

highest lord).
10. Time created the creatures
(pra^a/z), and Time
in the
beginning (created) the lord of creatures
(

Pra^apati)

the self-existing

(creative fervour)

XIX,

54.

Kaiyapa and the tapas

from Time were born.

Prayer to Kala (time), personified as


a primordial power.

1.

the

From Time

the waters did arise

from Time

brahma

(spiritual exaltation), the tapas (creative


the
fervour),
regions (of space did arise).
Through
1 ime the sun rises, in Time he
clown
goes
again.
2.
Through Time the wind blows, through Time

the great sky is fixed in


(exists) the great earth
Time. In Time the son (Pra^apati) begot of yore
that which was, and that which shall be.
;

3.

born

From Time the /?zks


from Time Time put
;

arose,

in

Ya^us was

forth the sacrifice, the

imperishable share of the gods.


4. Upon Time the Gandharvas
are founded,

the

and Apsarases

upon Time

the worlds (are founded),


this Angiras and Atharvan rule over the

Time

heavens.
this world and the highest
and
the
world,
holy (pure) worlds (and) their holy
divisions having by means of the brahma (spiritual
exaltation) conquered all the worlds, Time, the
highest God, forsooth, hastens onward.
5.

Having conquered
;

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

226

XI,

7.

Apotheosis of the uM/nshfa, the leavings


of the

sacrifice.

In the uM/nshta, are deposited name (quality)


and form, in the ukk/i\s\\ta, the world is deposited.
1.

Within the

u/cv//ish/a

Indra and Agni, and the

are deposited.
2. In the wkkkishtdi heaven

and

earth,

and

all

all

beings, are deposited in the ukkkishta. are deposited


the waters, the ocean, the moon, and the wind.
3. In the ukkklsYitdi are both being and non-being,
;

death, strength (food), and Pra^apati. The (creatures)


of the world are founded upon the u/'^ish/a (also)
;

that which

is

confined and that which

is free,

and the

grace in me.
4.

He who

fastens

what

is

firm, the strong, the

brahma, the ten creators of the all, the


on all sides to the ukk/nshtdi as
the (spokes of the) wheel to the nave.
the singing of the
5. JZik, Saman, and Ya^us,
and
their
the stotras are in
introductions,
samans,
leader, the

divinities, are fixed

the uM/iishfa.

The sound him


'

'

is

in the u/'^ish/a,

and the modulations and the music of the saman.

That

is

in

me.

6.

The

7.

The ceremony

prayer to Indra and Agni (aindragnam),


the call to the soma, as it is being purified (pavamanam), the mahanamni-verses, the singing of the
mahavrata, (these) divisions of the service are in the
uM/nsh/a, as the embryo in the mother.
of the consecration of the king

(ra^asuya), the va^apeya, the agnish/oma, and the


cattle-sacrifice belonging to it, the arka and the
horse-sacrifice,

and the most

which fresh barhis

is

delightful (sacrifice) for


strewn, are in the uM/nsh^a..

COSMOGONIC AND THEOSOPHIC HYMNS.

X.

The

8.

dheyam),

22 7

preparation of the sacred fire (agnyathe consecration for the soma-sacrifice

by which

(special) wishes are


fulfilled, together with the metres, the sacrifices that
have passed out, and the extended sacrifices (satra),

(diksha), the sacrifice

are founded upon the u/77/ish/a.


9. The agnihotra, faith, the call vasha/,

vows and

asceticism, sacrificial rewards, what is sacrificed (to


the gods) and given (to the priests) are contained in
the u/t'/(7/ish/a.
10.

The

(that

which

(soma-sacrifice) that lasts one night


(ekaratra), and that which lasts two nights (dviratra),
the (condensed soma-sacrifice called) sadya/zkri^ and
called) prakri, the (songs called) ukthya,
in the u/77zish/a
(also

is

woven and deposited

are

the parts) of the sacrifice subtle through (higher)

knowledge.

The

11.

five

(/aturatra),
(sharfVatra),

the

nights

(pa/Xaratra),

four

nights

six

nights

the sixteenfold stotra (sho^/a^in),


that lasts seven nights

all

the sacrifices which were founded

upon immortality

(amrz'ta),

were begotten of the

The

pratihara-passages (in the saman-songs),


their final syllables, the (soma-sacrifices called)

12.

visvsLgit

and

abhi;>it,

the

soma-sacrifice that ends

day (sahna), and that which lasts


the next day (atiratra), are in the u/77/ish/a

with

the

soma-sacrifice also that lasts twelve days.


in

last

soma-sacrifice

(saptaratra),

and

lasts

and along (with them) those that

double the time

and

that

soma-sacrifice

into

the

That

is

me.
13.

call

Liberality,

accomplishment,

possession,

the

svadha, nurture, immortality (amn'ta), and might,


Q 2

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

28

inner desires are satisfied according to wish in

all

the U///;ishfe.

The

nine earths, oceans, heavens, are founded


upon the uM/iishta. The sun shines in the u&A/iishfa,
14.

and day and night


1

The

5.

That

also.

is

in

me.

(soma-sacrifice called) upahavya, the offer-

ing on the middle day of a sacrifice lasting a year


(vishuvant), and the sacrifices that are secretly presented,

U AMlshta,

the sustainer of the universe, the

father of the generator (Pra^apati), supports.


16. UM/ilshta, the father of the generator, the

grandson of the

the primal ancestor


(grandfather), the ruler of the universe, the lusty
bulLdwells upon the earth.

Order

17.

(tapas),

past,

spirit

(rzta),

sovereignty,

future,

uM/iish/a

(asu),

truth

(satya),

asceticism,

fervour

creative

law

and works

strength, and prosperity, are

in

the

force in force.

18. Success, might, plans, dominion, sovereignty,


the six broad (regions), the year, libation (ie/a), the

orders to the priests (praisha), the draughts of soma


(graha), oblations (are founded) upon the ukkhi&ita.
19.

The

(liturgies called) /'aturhotara/z, the apri-

hymns, the triennial sacrifices, the (formulas called)


nivid, the sacrifices, the priestly functions, the cattlesacrifice

and the soma-oblations connected with

it,

are in the u/c/c/nshta.

The

half-months and months, the divisions


of the year together with the seasons, the resounding
waters, thunder, the great Vedic canon (.yruti) are in
20.

the

\ikkkish.tdi.

21.

clouds,

Pebbles,

sand,

lightning,

founded upon the

stones,

herbs,

are

attached

rain,

u/'^//ish/a.

plants,
to,

grass,

and are

COSMOGONIC AND TIIEOSOPHIC HYMNS.

X.

22.

229

Success, attainment, accomplishment, control,

greatness, prosperity,

being rest upon, rest

supreme attainment, and wellin, have been deposited in the

u/i'ishfa.
23.

Whatever breathes with


in the

sight, all

gods
were born of the
24.

The

breath,

and sees with

heavens, founded upon heaven,

u/vcv^ish/a.

r/ks and the samans, the

metres, the

ancient legends (pura/^am) together with the ya^us,


all gods in the heavens, founded upon heaven, were

born of the uAA/iishfa.


In-breathing and out-breathing, sight, hearing,
imperishableness and perishableness, all gods in the
25.

heavens, founded upon heaven, were born of the


u/cTtV^ish/a.

26. Joys, pleasures, delights, jubilation


in

all

ment,
gods
were born of the

The

and merri-

the heavens, founded upon heaven,


u/e/c/iish^a.

the

(deceased) Fathers, men,


Gandharvas and Apsaras, all gods in the heavens,
founded upon heaven, were born of the u/'///ish/a.
2j.

IX,
1.

gods,

Hymn

1.

From

from the

to the honey-lash of the Asvins.

heaven, from earth, from the atmosphere,


sea, from the fire, and from the wind,

the honey-lash hath verily sprung.


This, clothed in
amrz'ta (ambrosia), all the creatures revering, acclaim
in their hearts.
2.

call

Great sap of all forms (colours) it hath they


Where
thee moreover the seed of the ocea n.

the honey-lash
breath,

comes bestowing

gifts,

there

and there immortality has settled down.

life's

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

23O

Men

severally, contemplating

it

profoundly,
thf fir^ a nr
the
earth
"fejatn
upon
from the wind the honey-lash hath verily sprung the
strong child of the Ma r uts.
3.

behold

action

its

4 .^Mot her of the Adityas, d aughter of the V as.us


breath of life of created beings, nave of immortality,
,

the honey-lash, golden-coloured, dripping ghee, as


a great embryo, moves among mortals.

The gods begot

5.

the lash of honey, from

it

came an embryo having

all forms
This, as
(colours).
soon as born, (while yet) young its mother nourishes
this, as soon as born, surveys all the worlds.
;

Who

6.

haustible,

heart of

he

and who perceives it, the inexsoma-holding cup that has come from the

knows

it

it

(the honey-lash)

'Tis the wise priest

from it
he perceives them, the
and
them,

shall derive inspiration

He knows

7.

inexhaustible breasts of

it

(the honey-lash), that yield

Nourishment they pour out

a thousand streams.

without recalcitration.

The grea t

forth the
(cow), that loudly gives
sound him,' that bestows strength, and goes with
loud shouts to the holy act, bellowing with lust for
8.

'

the three (male) gharmas


with (strjgams) of milk

(fires),

she lows, and drips

When

the waters, the mighty bulls, self-sovereign, wait upon (the cow), swollen with milk, (then)
they, the waters, pour nourishment (upon her), and
cause her to pour nourishment at will for him that
9.

knoweth

this.

The thunder

as
Pra^apati
the
earth
From
aJ^nll^tJTnrMinrlpgt fjiyj^^i pon
t he fire, and from t he wind the honey-las h
hath
1

o.

is

thy voi ce,

v erily sprung, the strong

child of the

MaartSr

COSMOGONIC AND TIIEOSOPHIC HYMNS.

X.

As

11.

the

soma

at the morning-pressure

to the Aivins, thus in

lustre shall

As

12.
is

O
O

be sustained

the

soma

person,

is

dear

A-svins,

at the second (mid-day) pressure

dear to Indra and Agni, thus in my own person,


Indra and Agni, lustre shall be sustained
!

As

13.
is

my own

23

the

soma

at the third pressure (evening)

dear to the /frbhus, thus in


7?/bhus, lustre shall

my own

be sustained

person,

beget honey for myself; may I obtain


honey for myself! Bringing milk, O Agni, I have
come endow me with lustre
me
15. Endow me, O Agni, with lustre, endow

May

14.

with offspring and with life! May the gods take


note of this (prayer) of mine; may Indra together
with the i?z'shis (take note of it)
!

16.

As

bees carry together honey upon honey,


my own person, O Asvins, lustre shall be

thus in

sustained

As the
7.
my own

bees pile this honey upon honey, thus


in
person, O Asvins, lustre, brilliance,
strength, and force shall be sustained
18. The honey that is in the mountains, in the
heights in the cows, and in the horses the honey
1

which

is

in the sura (brandy) as

out, that shall

be

me

in

it is

being poured

Asvins, lords of brightness, anoint me


with the honey of the bee, that I may speak forceful
19.

speech

among men
The thunder

is thy speech,
Prafapati as
a bull thou hurlest thy fire upon earth and heaven.
All animals live upon it (the earth), and she with it

20.

(Pra^apati's
21.

The

fire) fills

nourishment and food.

earth

the

is

staff,

the atmosphere the

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

232

embryo, the heaven the whip (itself?), the lightning


the whip-cord of gold is the tip (of the whip ?).
22. He that knoweth the seven honies of the whip
;

becomes

rich in

honey

king, the cow, the ox,


seventh.
23.

Rich

become

in

(to wit), the

rice, barley,

honey becomes

his appurtenances,

Brahma/za, the

and honey as the

he,

worlds rich

rich
in

in

honey
honey does

he win, he that knoweth thus.


24. 4ALhen in a bright skv it thunders, then Pra<ramanifests himself to (his) creatures (pr aj>a/A
Therefore do I stand with the sacred cord suspended

pati

from
'

the

right

shoulder

(pra^inopavita),
'

(pra.ga.fi)

saying,

watch over me
The creatures
watch over him, Pra^apati watches over

Pra^apati,

him, that knoweth thus.

EXTRACTS FROM THE RITUAL


TEXTS AND COMMENTARY.

I,

2.

Commentary to page

The ritual application


as a medical

of this

hymn

is

8.

a twofold one.

It is

charm and,

employed
again, as a battle-charm,
to
the
belief
that
certain
diseases
are inflicted upon
owing
mortals by the arrows of Par^anya, a belief which introduces into the context a large number of words redolent of
battle, as well as
this the

some designations

double treatment,

charm the present hymn


list

(ga7/a) of

e.g., of

figures in

hymns called

of diseases.

AV.

I,

Kaiu.

12.

Cf.

As

14, 7 in

with

a battle-

a lengthy

sa;//gramika;/i (or apara^itagawa)

connection with warlike practices in


the subsequent Sutras (14, 8-13, and more especially Sutra
Still more secondarily, the entire list (apara^ita) is
12).
this list is

employed

in

employed in Kauj\ 139, 7, along with certain other gawas,


at the ceremonies connected with the beginning of the study
of the

and

Veda (upakarma)

1
.

Cf.

also

the 5antikalpa

17

2.

In its medicinal construction the hymn is a charm against


diarrhoea, being followed by AV. I, 3, a charm against diseases of the opposite character, constipation and retention of
urine.
It is handled in this sense at Kauj. 25, 6-9, along

AV. II, 3, in a practice which, according to Darila, is


directed against diarrhoea (atisara)
K&rava and Saya;/a
construe it more broadly as against fever, diarrhoea, exces-

with

See the introduction to VI, 97.

Quoted erroneously by Sayawa

as the Nakshatrakalpa.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

2 34

and even flow of blood, i.e. against excessive or


unnatural flows from the body in general. The practices
are as follows
25, 6. While reciting the two hymns I, 2
sive urine,

'

and

II, 3 the (practising priest) ties the head of a stalk of


mu/^a-reed (saccharum munja) with a cord (made from the
same plant, as an amulet, upon the patient 1 ). 7. Having
ground up a natural lump of earth, and earth from an
ant-mound 2 he gives (a solution of this to the patient)
8. He smears him with
to drink.
9. He blows
ghee.
3
rectum
of
the
upon (the
patient ).'
The hymn has been translated and analysed by Weber,
Ind. Stud. IV, pp. 394-5 and the present writer, in Seven
,

'

of the Atharva-veda,' Amer. Journ. Phil. VII,


Cf. also Florenz in Bezzenberger's Beitrage,
pp. 178 ft".; and, as a specimen of an interpretation

Hymns

pp. 467-9.

XIV,

which assumes that no Vedic passage has previously been


correctly understood, Regnaud, L'Atharva-Veda et la
methode d'interpretation de M. Bloomfield, pp. 8-10.
Stanza

1.

Par^anya is the god of rain (hence his epithet bhuridhayas), and his outpourings upon the earth seem to be
compared with a shower of arrows hence in RV. VI, 75,
15 the arrow is said to come from the semen of Par^anya
Possibly, however, the arrow is
(par^anyaretasa ishvai).
a.

Par^anya's child, because arrow-reeds (.rara) grow in consequence of the rain. It seems further that the discharges
from the body are compared with Par^anya's rain, and are
Hence the
therefore under his control
cf. I, 3, 1 below.
;

The

passage in brackets

is

derived from the Commentaries.

For the role of the ant-mound, see the note on II, 3, 4, and
more especially VI, 100.
3
So according to Darila, apane dhamati K&yava and Sayawa,
in accordance with their more liberal construction, cause the blow;

ing to be performed upon the particular opening in the body from

which the excessive discharge flows (Sayazza, apana.mnana</ivrawamukhanam dhamanam). For apana, a euphemism for rectum,'
'

see Kaurika, Introduction, p.

lv,

bottom.

I,

COMMENTARY.

3.

double construction of this

235

and as
For the knowledge
which imparts power and control, cf. VII, 12, 2 76, 5, and
elsewhere. Also 5at. Br. IX, 1, 1, 17, 'no damage comes
from him who has been recognised and addressed.'
b. The earth as mother of the
plants yields the shafts
a

remedy

hymn

as a battle-charm,

against excessive discharges.

for the arrows.

Stanza

uns,' is

verb pari nam.

'

Sayaz/a, quite correctly,

mam

vihaya anyatra
Tait. S. IV, 6, 6, 4.
.

c.

2.

Bogenschnur schlinge dich um


not in accordance with the quotable uses of the

Weber's translation

a.

Sayaz/a,

.yara/zz

who throughout

nya and Indra

(cf.

asman parihr/tya
Cf. II, 13,

preraya.

this

hymn

4b

identifies Par^-a-

Biihler, Orient und Occident,

I,

p.

229

Bergaigne, III, p. 25), refers vidu/i to Indra. But it refers


to the bowstring
cf.
vi^u ayudha, RV. I, 39, 2
and
;

similarly,

RV. VI,

47, 26.

Stanza
'

a.

Literally,

3.

when the cows embracing the

tree.'

The

'
singular or plural of the stem go for sinew,' and some word
for tree in the sense of 'bow,' occur also RV. VI, 47, 26;

75, 11
b.

lane

X,

27, 22.

Saya/za, anusphuraz/z pratisphurazzazzz,


ar^anti
prerayanti.
.

Stanza
d.

Cf.

sphur samka-

4.

with this the tying of the amulet in the practices

of the Sutra.

Sayazza, mu^eshika-nirmita raggu/i.


the introduction to I, 12.

I,

3.

The Kaujika

Commentary to tage
prescribes this

hymn

Cf.

io.

against retention of

and constipation; the stanzas themselves seem to refer


to difficulties in micturation only, and very possibly, the
Sutra adds the other feature. The hymn is the pendant

urine

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

236

which aims to obviate the opposite difficulties.


25, 10-19 are as follows: 10.
practices in Kauj
'While reciting AV. 1, 3 (the practitioner) ties on (as an
to

2,

I,

The

amulet upon the patient) a substance promoting micturation

He

11.

him

gives

drink a solution of earth

to

from a molehill, of putika

(a stinking plant, guilandina


2
each mixed with
bonduc), of pulverised, dried pramanda
3
12. While reciting the last two stanzas
(wood-) shavings
,

He

13. He makes him


He shoots off an arrow. 15.
He probes the bladder 4 17.

hymn, he gives him an enema.

of the

take a ride in a vehicle.

opens the urethra.

14.
16.

Having poured twenty-one barley-grains with water into


a milk-pail, placing an axe behind (the patient), he pours

w ater from the grain 5 (upon the suffering part). 18.


6
lotus-root, and
gives him to drink a decoction of ala
7
ula
19. The same treatment is prescribed for one suffering from constipation.' The performances are in part

the

He

therapeutic, in part symbolic (the shooting of the arrow).


Cf. Wise, Hindu System of Medicine, pp. 364 ff.

The hymn has been


Cf. also

pp. 395-6.

translated

Bergaigne

et

by Weber, Ind. Stud. IV,


Henry, Manuel Vedique,

p. 130.

Stanza
Cf.

2,

I,

to the

abundant semen

According
'

pura,
2
3

The

above.

to the

1.

expression jataw/shwya refers

(rain) of

Par^anya

cf.

especially

'

commentators, haritaki,

gall-nut,'

and kar-

camphor,' are such substances.

Darila, at

Kauj.

8, 1 7, glosses this

with induka.

The

sense and the construction of the long compound in this


Sutra are not altogether clear. Cf. Kaurika, Introduction, p. Ixii ff.
4
According to Sayawa, in the introduction, he
bladder with a copper instrument.
So also Kcrava.
5

The

text,

phalato

this

seems

to

refer

to the

probes the

twenty-one

barley-grains.
6

Apparently a kind of creeper or weed in


godhumavyadhi// Ke^ava, yavagodhumavalli.
'

duction, p.

grain-fields.'

xlvii.

'

Darila, kasturikajaka,

musk

'

Darila,

See Kaurika, Intro-

Kejava, pavika.

RV.

COMMENTARY.

7.

I,

237

Hence the repetition of the same expres15.


four other gods is secondary and mechanical.
medicine man wants to make sure that he does not

VI, 75,

sion with

The

Saya//a justifies the mention of Mitra


neglect and offend.
of
and Varu/za by a reference to Tait. S. II, 4, 10, 2
;

A'andra by saying, asya oshadhuatvat j-arasya pitr/tvena


and of Surya by relying again upon Tait. S.
vya.pades3./i
;

II, 4, 10, 2.

Stanza

6.

a.

Sayawa explains gavinyor by, antrebhyo vinirgatasya


mutrasya mutrai-ayapraptisadhane pansvadvayasthe nartyau
The urethra and the ureter? Cf.
gavinyau ity uyate.
and gavinike,
in
Tait. S. Ill, 3, io, 1
the dual gavinyau
;

AV.
b.

I,

11,5; IX,

8, 7.

The majority

MSS. read sa;//.yrutam


MSS. has sawsrutam. For

of the

of Shankar Pandit's

but one
the root

Bloomfield and Spieker, Proc. Amer. Or. Soc,


For years I have
1886
May,
(Journal, vol. xiii, p. cxx).
had sawjritam written as a possible emendation on the

sru, 'flow/ see

margin of

copy of the text, and now Saya;/a persistimes) comments upon the same reading.

my

tently (three

Stanza
b.

7.

The MSS.

and vartam.

are divided between the readings vartram


Sayaz^a comments upon the latter, vartam

vartate pravahati ^alam atre*ti varto marga/*, and some of


the MSS. of Kaus. 25, 16, a Sutra coined with evident

reference to this stanza (varti/w bibhetti, see the translation


Darila comments, varta;;/ muabove), also read vartam.
trabilam.

word

do not

for the text

see Tait. S.

I, 6, 8,

I,

7.

feel certain that this is


'

not the correct

like the outlet of a lake.'


;

Maitr. S.

I,

For

vartra,

4, 10.

Commentary to page

64.

This and the following hymn are directed chiefly against


the species of beings called yatudhana, a term which oscilhostile
lates between the meaning human sorcerer and
'

'

'

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

238

The

demon.'

entire tradition, Sutras

and Commentaries,

latter bent, but we can see from RV.


give the word the
V, 12, 2 VII, 104, 15, 16, that men might practise yatu,
Both hymns are catalogued
and, therefore, be yatudhana.
;

in a series

(gaa)

in Kau.y. 8, 25,

'

called

atana, driving

away (demons,

and the Gawamala, Ath. Pam.

&c.),'

32, 3 (kk-

see Kau^ika, Index B,


tanagawa) for their employment,
With the subjectunder
atanani, and 5antikalpa 16.
matter of these hymns cf. in general RV. VII, 104, and
14 ff. Both hymns have been rendered by Weber,
:

III, 30,

Indische Studien, IV, 398

523
p.

131

cf.

also

Bergaigne

ff.

et

Ludwig, Der Rigveda, III,


Henry, Manuel Vedique,

ff.

Stanza

Throughout
root stu in

its

1.

Saya;/a takes the


of
'praise,' a mistake
ordinary holy sense

this

and the next

hymn

which leads to the most contorted renderings, and to an


utter disregard of grammatical construction, excused by
assuming interchanges of inflections (vibhaktivyatyaya).
He seems to be shy to attach any sinister sense to the root,
For kimidin,
or to connect it in any way with evil beings.
see the note

on IV,

20, 5.

Stanza
c. tailasya in the

is

2.

an emendation of the MS.

vulgata
reading taulasya (Saya//a, tulavat huyamana-dravyasya).
d. vi lapaya, make howl,' obviously includes as a double
entente the other possible sense of the word annihilate,' as
'

'

causative from the root

li.

Stanzas

4, 5.

the
great deal of stress is laid in these hymns upon
Half the battle is
confession of the yatudhana himself.

won when

their true nature

and the note on

I,

2,

1.

is

made

apparent.

Hence the neat

Cf. I, 8,

difference

4
between

the active pra bruhi in 5 b, said of Agni (cf. RV. X, 87, 8


AV. VIII, 3, 8), and the middle prabruvaz/aZ; in 5 d, said
Stanzas 5-7 are perhaps of a later
of the yatudhana.

hand, since the

hymns

only four stanzas

I,

COMMENTARY.

9.

I,

cf.

239

of the first book ordinarily present


the introduction to I, 12.

Commentary to page

8.

6$.

For the employment of

this hymn in the Atharvanic


and
practices,
previous translations, see the introduction to

the preceding hymn.

Stanza
e.

4.

we may

In order to obtain a trish/ubh line

resolve both

I,

ta;;zs

Commentary to page

9.

The hymn has been


III, 456,

and

either

or tvam, or insert gah\ after tvam.

translated

116.

by Ludwig, Der Rigveda,

entitled ra^abhisheke, 'at the coronation of

Zimmer, Altindisches Leben, p. 163, renders


king.'
in the same spirit.
The Kau^ika, however, in its

it

description of the coronation (chapter 17), does not rubricate this


hymn, but rather IV, 8 (cf. also Vait. Su. 36, 7), and the

Ga/zamala, Ath. ParLy. 32, 30, again only counts IV, 8 as


the abhishekaga/za (see Kau^. 17, 1 note).
Weber, Ind.
Stud. IV, 401, entitles it Segensspruch fiir einen Fiirsten,'
'

but this also seems to be too narrow the Sutra, advisedly


no doubt, employs it in practices designed to confer glory,
:

upon any one

lustre

At
I,

at

all.

Kauj-. 11, 19. 20, the

35 and V, 28

hymn

employed along with


designed to make one success-

in a practice

is

an amulet made of a pair of


krzshz/ala-berries (abrus precatorius linnaeus) *, which has
ful

(sawpatkarma), to wit

Or

'

two kr/sh;?ala in gold ? All the commentators


explain yugmakrz'shttalam as 'gold.'
Darila, raktike*ti (see Pet.
ka.
sauvarama//i/z
Lex.) prasiddhabhidhana ayazw
Kcrava, suvarwathe weight of

n\zni/i,

hira;;yamai// (here, and at Kau^. 52, 20).

hirawya in

I,

9, 2

35, 1; V, 28, 6.

Cf. the

word

very similar performance

undertaken with the same three hymns is stated at Kauj. 52, 20.
21, being a rite which bestows long life (ayushyakarma).
See also

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

24O
been steeped

honey during certain three days, Kauj. 7,


a mess of porridge, cooked in the milk
19),
of a cow with a calf of the same colour, is shaped in the
is

(in

Then

tied on.

figure of a man, enriched during twelve days with the


1
dregs of ghee, and consumed with averted face
Further, at Kaiu. 16, 27. 28, the hymn is associated with
.

a practice intended to restore the loyalty of a disaffected


2
the king is given to eat a porridge prepared from
people
an after-growth of rice 3 cooked in the milk of a cow with
:

a calf of the same colour, upon a

fire of kampila-branches
have
which
grown out where they
(crinum amaryllacee),
have been previously cut. A neat bit of symbolism the
milk of the cow with a calf of the same colour represents
:

complete harmony the after-growth of rice and kampila


represents the resumption of the sharply interrupted relations between the king and his people.
;

Once more the hymn


Kauj. S5,

is

recited for obvious reasons at

along with a list of others at the investiture of


the young 'twice-born' (cf. also the scholiast at 17, 31),
and it figures in one of the two var^asyaga/zas, ' series of
!/')

hymns which

confer lustre,' in the Ga/zamala, Ath. ParLy.

32, 10 (see Kau.r. 13,

note).

Stanza

The abrupt change

of person

2.

in

Pada

emending asmat to asmat,


the same formula in st. 4 c.

sibility of
cf.

'

c suggests the pos-

inferior to him.'

But

Yantikalpa 17 and 19 (quoted by Sayazza erroneously as NakshaCf. also Tait. Br. I, 3, 6, 7.


trakalpa).
As the porridge-man drips with ghee, thus the real
1

live in

man

shall

abundance.

rash/ravagamanam.

Darila, g-anapada/2 tasya

vagamanakaram

anuragakaram.
Sayawa, 'a performance designed to restore
a king, driven from his kingdom by an enemy.'
Cf. the hymns
.

111, 3
3

and

4.

The commentators

anew upon
See Darila,

state explicitly that rice which has grown


where it has previously been cut, is to be used.
Kcrava, and Sayawa (lunapunarutthita^-am odanam).

the place,

IO.

I,

COMMENTARY.

Stanza

24 I

3.

made here to the rape of the soma


behalf by Agni, the heavenly eagle (jyena).
According to our interpretation, in Contributions, Fifth
Series, Journ. Amer. Or. Soc. XVI, 1 ff., this Agni, the
Allusion seems to be
Indra's

in

the lightning.

is

eagle,

Commentary to page

10.

I,

ii.

AV. IV,
(cf.
waterhis
the
with
disease,
&c),
is
of
Kaiuika
the
performance

Varuwa punishes crime, especially falsehood


16

'

Tait. Br.

I, 7, 2, 6,

The

dropsy *.
purely symbolic:
belly,'

25,37. 'While reciting the hymn (the


the
patient over the head (with water) by
priest) sprinkles
means of twenty-one tufts of darbha-grass together with
reeds taken from the thatch of a house.'
The water in the

body
upon

is

supposed to be washed out by the water sprinkled

it

(attractio similium).

The hymn has been

translated

403-4; Ludwig, Der Rigveda,


et Henry, Manuel Vedique, p.

by Weber,

III,

445

cf.

Ind. Stud. IV,


also Bergaigne

133.

Stanza

1.

b. Weber regards va.sa. as fern. sing.


Whitney, in the
Index Verborum, as nom. plur. masc Sayawa, as neut. plur.,
vasa vasani. Varu;/a and Asura are, of course, the same
;

divinity.
'

Weber,

c.

send

'

durch mein gebet von da herauss dich reismit meinem brahma hervor mich tuend
'

'

Ludwig,

brahmawa

Sayawa,
tikshwa/^

mantrena

The passage

5una/wepa
1

Varuwa

the dropsy

[42]

is

cf.

sasada.na./i

atyartham

praptabala//.

Stanza
c, d.

is

2.

a reverberation from the legend of

Ait. Br. VII, 15.

the lord of the waters (see the note on IV, 16, 3)


therefore conceived to be due to his infliction.

is

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

242

d. For tava*yam, cf. VIII, 2, 20 d.


Ludwig suggests
that the sufferer, being a kshatriya, is said to be the man
Weber construes it as
of Varu;za, the king (kshatriya).

though

it

were an

ethical dative,

'

dieser lebe dir

deine gnade) hundert Herbste.'

(i.

e.

durch

Sayawa, identically the

same way, tava anugrahat.


Stanza
a, b.

4.

dem

von

'

Ludwig, rendering

grossen meere Vai^-

vanara,' thinks that the lower regions are alluded to, since
death overtakes him that has been seized by Varu;/a.

Sayaz/a

over-ingeniously
fire (^a/Z/aragni),

digestive
disturbance.

more

But

AV.

connects
i.

e. in

VIII,

27 shows

2,

intended than the funeral

is

stanza, Vait. Su. 38,

I,

11.

with

the

fire.

that

Cf. for

nothing

the entire

1.

Commentary to page

The ceremonies connected with


Kauj

vauvanara

this connection, digestive

this

hymn

99.

are described

33,
They are in part intended to procure
and
natural
easy
parturition, but the attention of the sutrakara seems to be engrossed even more by certain oracles
-

in

ff.

tell whether the woman is in danger, and


or
whether
not she will give birth to a male child. As
the practices, in spite of their unusual length, do not exhibit any very close connection with the hymn, we may

which

shall

only present the

AV.

first

six

Sutras, as follows:

1.

'While

11, four portions of the dregs of

ghee are
four
and
are
poured
mu/7^a-reeds
plucked
(and placed) eastward upon the head (of the pregnant
woman ). 2. The sheaths (of the mu/^a-reeds) are placed
westward.
3. If (these reeds and stalks) should break,
there is danger.
4. (The practitioner) washes her with
reciting

I,

into a water-pail,

warm
1

water, beginning with the braid of hair to the right.

Cf. the four directions

hymn.

mentioned

in

the second stanza of the

The

5.

COMMENTARY.

II.

I,

243

house are loosened


and a wagon-rope is

joints of the

sides of her a cord

6.

On

both

The

fastened.'

remaining Sutras are not all of them clear they seem to


be devoted wholly to oracles for finding out whether it is
;

to be a

boy

or not.

Practices similar to the above, in part built up upon


mantra-materials of a similar character, are known in the

Grzhya-sutras and elsewhere by the

karma;

Par. Grzh.
7,

13

XIV,

see Sat. Br.

fif.

16,

I,

Khad.

ff.

9, 4,

5ankh. Grzh.

28

Grz'h. II, 2,

name

of soshyanti-

22=Brih. Ar. VI,


ff.

I,

23

4,

23:

Gobh. Grzh.

Hir. Grih. II,

2,

II,
ff.

Apast. Grih. VI, 14, 13 ff.


The hymn has been treated by Roth, Ueber den Atharvaveda (Tubingen, 1856), pp. 15 ff. Weber, Indische Studien,
;

IV, 404 5

Ludwig, Der Rigveda,


Stanza

III, 478.

1.

The

point of the first hemistich is the punning


of
the birth (suti) with the act of pressing the
comparison
soma. This makes of it a sacrifice
Aryaman, as the
a, b.

hotar-priest, utters the vasha/-call for


it

w ere the adhvaryu-priest


r

cf.

Pushan who

is,

as

LudPushan (cf.
the two in

Ind. Stud. X, 324.

wig's surmise that Sushan is to be read for


The association of
stanza 3) is untenable.

matters connected with marriage (RV. X, 85, 36, 37) is


well known 2
For hota vedha/z, see Ludwig, Der Rigveda,
.

pp. 223-4; vedha/z, however, is not derivable from


the root vidh, but is equal to Avestan vazdarih (Geldner,
III,

zum Avesta, p. 58).


The Pada is very difficult.

Studien
c.

tam nary

Roth emends

freely, si'srz-

rz'tapra^ato, (a child) begotten at the proper time


shall detach itself,
woman!' He compares, for this use
'

of sis7-/tam, V$g. S. VIII, 28, eva*ya;;z


1

da^amasyo

Symbolic action calculated to loosen the foetus

cf. in

asrat,

general

AV. IX, 3.
2
The mantra quoted in Kauj. 33, 7 is also based upon
same hymn, RV. X, 85, 40 (the surya-sukta).
R 2

the

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

244
where asrat

is,

however, to be derived from

'

sra/;/s,

fall.'

Weber

regards nary rztapra^ata as parenthetic, and combines si'sratam with parvam, lass nachgeben
mog die frau
'

richtig

gebaut sein

weichen die glieder

lass

'
!

Ludwig,

We

'

es lose sich die frau als eine richtig gebarende.'


have
adhered closely to the text, but si'sratam as a third singular

middle imperative is problematic, and perhaps Roth's emendation (si's77tam) is to be adopted.


Possibly some derivative of sra;;?s stood in place of the word (si'srasat, f may
she cause the child to

'

fall

?).

Stanza

2.

d. The editio princeps reads taw vyun/uvantu sutave


Shankar Pandit, following the minority of his MSS. and
Sayawa, reads ta.m, which was also proposed by Roth, 1. c,
I have transp. 15, and adopted by Weber, I.e., p. 405.
lated ta7/2, because the womb and not the foetus (cf. AV.
;

IV,

2, 8) is

at birth.

opened

Stanza
a.

We

3.

shall, in all probability,

never be able to unravel

the tangle of mixed, punning notions which have given rise


here to the an. Aey., the proper name Sushan.
Ludwig is
it
so
much
as
to
endow
the
entire
with
impressed
hymn

with the title Sushan. In the first place it is a modification


of Piishan, suggesting the future or desiderative of the root
su, 'beget;' cf. sushyanti, RV. V, 78, 5.
Then, there is
surely an allusion to usha(//) vyur/zvati' in RV. I, 92, 11,
that is, susha is dimly felt to be su + usha, beautiful Ushas ;'
'

cf.

7, 3, 2.
Saya;/a plainly and mechanically
one of three explanations, j-obhana usha/i
again the words su 'well' and san 'obtain'

Tait. S. IV,

offers this as

susha.

may

And

also

siishawe in

have

Pada

before the eyes of the versifex, cf.


Sayawa offers two explanations in addi-

flitted
c.

tion to the above, susha savitri pra^anayitri devata, and


suvaw sanoti*ti susha. The Pada is catalectic, but scarcely

stands in need of emendation

des Rigveda, pp. 34

ff.

cf.

Oldenberg, Die

Hymnen

RV. V,

b.

Cf.

c.

Susha.we

tive

78, 5

(air.

COMMENTARY.

II.

I,

Ait. Br. V, 15,

Aey. as siisha in

from either susham or

suva;;/ sanoti

as
'

la

'

'

or

'

a voca-

susha//e,

'

'

called bahv-apatya,
its

may be

'

kalpadruma, bishkala
of

a)

Sayaa, he

siisha;/a

make,' or else from a combination of the roots


permeate and kal go
According to the Sabda-

take

vish

4.

Pada

praya/Wati
sukhaprasavakari;zi devata.
Still more problematic is bishkale.
Saya;/a explains
either from bishka, an imitative word, and the root

d.
it

245

'

the domestic sow (gramyai'ukara//)


offspring,' on account

is

having abundant

prolificness.

Stanza
Grzh.

Cf. Par.

16,

4.

Grih.

Hir.

II, 3, 3.
Saya/za,
authority, reads ma;;/sena, as does
Paraskara.
Saya;/a quotes from an unquotable Vedic text
(nigamantaram) another form of this mantra, svavity(!) avapaI,

supported by some MS.

dyasva na mawseshu na snavasu na baddham


c.

wSevalam

renders

is

'

it

The

problematic.

moist, slimy,'

asi

ma^asu.

scholiast to Paraskara

and the Petersburg lexicon's sus-

picion that this is a purely etymological rendering based


upon the name of the water-plant .yaivala is fully borne out

by

Saya;;a's statement, ^evalam^alasyoparisthitaj'aivalavat

Roth, 1. c, p. 16, suggests


antaravayavasa/;zbaddham.
the
alone
cf.
for
kevalam,
interchange between s and k,
Bloomfield and Spieker in the Proc. Amer. Or. Soc. for
'

'

May, 1886

(Journ., vol.

xiii, p.

cxxi).

Stanza
Cf. Tait. S. Ill, 3, 10,

AV.

5.
I, 3, 6.

Saya;za, gavinike

yone// parj-vavartinyau nirgamanapratibandhike na^yau.

Stanza

6.

RV. V,

78, 7. 8; Sat. Br. XIV, 9, 4, 22; VZg. S.


Nirukta
III, 15; Hir. Grih. II, 3, 1
Apast.
VIII, 28;
Mantrabr. II, 11, 15; Bhar. Grzh. I, 21; Baudh. Grih.
Cf.

Pari^ish/a II,

2.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

246

Commentary to page

12.

I,

The history of the interpretation of


uncommon interest, because it illustrates
ticular closeness

this

hymn

is

of

forcibly the parthe hymns of the

between

of relation

7.

Atharvan and the practices reported in connection with


them. Professor Weber, Indische Studien, IV, p. 405,
the

translated

under the caption

hymn

'

Gegen

hitziges

and, guided especially by the more immediate


meaning of garayugaft, 'the product of the placenta, after-

fieber,'

he thought that the

birth,'

referred to

hymn

puerperal

Ludwig, Der Rigveda, III,


fever, or the fever of a child.
was
directed against inflamthat
the
surmised
hymn
p. 343,
mation, and Zimmer, Altindisches Leben, p. 390, refers to
it
in connection with the word vata in the first stanza,
he also identifies
which he would translate by wound
'

'

vata with

wound
the

in

bhra^as
'

'

suffering from

The compound vataetymologically.


stanza, as he understands, means

'

first

But Zimmer's theory that

wound-fever.'
'

the word vata ever means

'wind

wound

'

has not sustained

the body;' vatik/'/tanaLrani (VI, 44,


1
of
the
disease which comes from wind
is
destroyer
3 )
bata
cf.
the
byadhi (vatavyadhi), 'diseases probody) ;'
(of
duced by wind (in the body),' in Wise's Hindu System of

vata

itself:

is

in

'

Medicine, p. 250, and

Amer. Journ.
In Seven

Phil.

see

Contributions, Fourth Series,

XII,

Hymns

p. 427.
of the Atharva-veda,

1. c,
VII, pp.
presented a full discussion of the hymn, and,
aided by the indications of the Kaoyika-sutra, showed that
the hymn referred to lightning, which is regarded as pro-

469

ff.,

ductive of certain diseases mentioned in the context, to


wit,

fever

cough.
it

is

The

(cf.

The

the word sokisha in

word

pivotal
interesting to note

first

in

why

the
it

book of the Atharvan

st.

hymn
is

is

2),

headache, and

is ga.va.yuga.fi,

and

especially misleading.
a miscellaneous collec-

Cf. the note there, at VI, 109, 3,

and IX,

8, 20.

COMMENTARY.

1,12.
tion of

hymns

247

containing for the most part, though not

unfailingly, four stanzas each

(cf.

AV. XIX,

23,

Atharva-

1, 13; Ath. ParLy. 48, 9 and 10; Gop. Br. I,


Ind.
Stud.
XVII, 178). There is no definite
1,8;
IV, 433
order in the arrangement of the hymns within the book,

nukrama//i

I,

but there appears a marked tendency to group together


two or even three having the same or a similar subject.
1
The eleventh is
This concerns especially hymns
13.
]

The last three


a charm for easy delivery in childbed.
stanzas end with the refrain, ava ^arayu padyatam, may
in addition to this the word
the placenta come dowm
'

'

ga.va.yu occurs thrice more in the course of the last three


verses.
Now, there can be no doubt that the redactor

placed our hymn (I, 12) after I, 11 simply because it begins


This does not argue that he
with the word ^arayu^a^ l
nature
of the hymn on the conmisunderstood the true
.

trary

it

quite clear that he recognised

is

with lightning, because he has placed after

which
&c).

its
it I,

association
13,

hymn

evidently a prayer to lightning (namas te vidyute,


He placed I, 12 after I, 11 simply because the word

is

gar&yuga/i offered as good a point of linkage as any other


at hand, the fundamental difference in its value notwithBut it is natural that European readers should
standing.

have seized upon

this

erroneous suggestion, so as to be

deciding the purpose of the hymn.


The native treatment of the hymn exhibits considerable
It is a hymn
divergence, owing to its duplex character.

influenced

by

to lightning

it

in

and, on the other hand, the diseases attributed

to lightning present even more salient and practical points,


destined to be prominent in its designation and ritual

So the Anukramawi describes it as a yakshapplication.


mana.rana;/z suktam, 'a hymn which cures consumption'
from cough in st. 3) in the Ga;/a(cf. the word kasas
'

'

mala, Ath.

Pam.

32,

7, it

is

one of the takmanlranaga/sa,

1
Note the words stana<6 and stanayitnur respectively, in VII, 10
and VII, 11, as the probable, and even more inane reason for the
juxtaposition of the two hymns in the redaction.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

248

'a group of hymns designed to cure takman, fever' (cf.


Kau.rika employs it twice, presenting
Kauj-. 26, 1, note).
In 38, 1-7 it is used in a
characteristics.
main
two
its

charm against thunderstorms, preceding the employment


in a similar charm of AV. I, 13 and VII, 11, both of which
But in 26,
are palpably hymns addressed to lightning.
1-9

employed further in a performance which is disby Darila as a jirorogabhaisha^yaw, cure


headache (cf. muuka. jirshaktya in st. 3 a), and by
is

it

'

tinctly described
'

for

Ke.rava

as, atikase .rirshakti.m-ovedanaya;;z ka.

karmam,

'rites

against excessive cough and pains in the head.'


The latter practice is as follows 1. While reciting
'

AV.

drink of fat
honey,
I, 12 (the priest) lets (the patient)
2. (The patient), his head covered
sesame-oil.
and
ghee,
,

made

with a turban

of

mu%a-grass

(saccharum munja

in his left

roxburgiense), goes along carrying


3
in a sieve, from which he scatters
grain

it

hand parched
with his

left

in his left
3. (The patient then goes on, carrying)
hand the sieve and the turban, in his right hand a bow4. The (patient goes) in front of the
string and an axe.
orders 4
the
who
5. On the spot where the
gives
priest
disease seizes upon him he puts down the sieve and

hand.

the turban.

home

5
.

8.

priest) while

And

6.

(also) the bowstring.

7.

He

his nose.

(The patient) puts ghee up


supporting the patient's head with a

returns
9.

knots mutters (the hymn).'


sense of these practices, obscure though they are in

bamboo) having

five

Kcrava, mawsameda^.

Kam. mau-a-pra.ma

maug-a-induka

indxa.
(cf.

Darila,

pra^na ushwishaz/z

in the Pet. Lex.,

and especially

(The

staff (of

The

many

Kcrava,
Kauj.

in

26, 30).
3

Kauj. pulyani

Kejava here

is

Symbolic scattering of the fever.


the least obscure of the commentators, vya-

Kes. la-an.

dhitam agre kr/tva.


5
The text of the Sutra is very obscure. One MS. of the text
Darila has avra^azw twice
reads avraganam the rest, avra^atam.
this may be for the
of
the
10
and
on
notes
71
7
p.
edition);
(see
translation.
participle avrag-an, and has served as the basis of the
;

249

clearly a symbolic act of drawing the disease

is

details,

COMMENTARY.

12.

I,

out of the head, and depositing it where it is supposed to


have come from cf. the introduction to VI, 26. One is
;

tempted, at

to accuse the medicine

first sight,

man

banalite of employing mu/T^a-grass simply because


'

with mu/7/a,

and

release,'

this

of the
it

puns
would be no more than

Possibly, however, there is a little more


contained in the practice. In .Sat. Br. VI, 3, 1, 26 we have
the following legend
Agni went away from the gods, he

Atharvanesque.

'

entered the mimga-grass.


Therefore that is hollow, and
very reason it is as it were disfigured by smoke.

for that

The

rnu/^-a

the

is

womb

here of Agni.'

In that case

have here the usual attractio similium.


in

employed
it is

VI.

drawing

home

the natural
6, 1,

off the

The mu/^a

we
is

of lightning, because

effect

of fire (lightning).

Cf. also .Sat. Br.

23.

Uncanny

the

is

rite

which the Kaujika prescribes

in

connection with the

stormy
itself

hymn at 38, 1-7. It is directed against


weather, durdina, the relation of which to lightning, of
is

obvious,

stated explicitly in the

Harivawwa 9609,

tumulaw durdinaw M^sid vidyutstanayitnumat, 'and there


arose a crashing storm accompanied by lightning and
thunder.'
The passage of the Sutra may be translated as

'When one goes against a storm he


2. Stanza by stanza
reciting AV. I, 12.

follows:

while

the storm hurling) jets of water 2 (against it).


faces it) with a sword, a firebrand, and a club

he faces

faces

1.

it)

naked while wiping

his

it

(he faces

3.
3
.

forehead.

(And he
4. (And
5.

Into

a coal-pan which he has removed outside (of the house)


he makes an oblation of (the leaves of) the horse-radish

Ke^ava. durdinam abhimukham upatish///ate.


the Brahma/ras have innumerable times the exudava^rai/z
:

pression va^ro va apa/7, e.g.


3

kishkuru (with variants)

.Sat.
is

Br. VII,

unknown

2,

1,

17.

elsewhere, but Ke^ava in

glossing it with laku/a


lagu'a is clearly well-informed.
is doubtless identical with kishku, which the scholiast at

VI, 5,12 glosses with da</a.

The word
PaX\ Br.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

25O
tree

and pebbles.

He

6.

puts on (fagots

and arka (calotropis gigantea) plants.


with dishevelled hair

rain,

quickly buries into


this

performance
is

'

7.

going thrice

Beaten by the
pit he

around a

The symbolism

the arka-wood.'

not

is

of

the use

altogether transparent
doubtless founded upon a double entente
flash of lightning,' and its cessation is coaxed by

of the arka

arka

it

the kera

of)

is

burying the arka-wood

in the pit.

Stanza

1.

For ^arayu-^a; born of the (cloud-)womb,' cf. abhra-^a


and such expressions as vidyun meghasakha, the
lightning whose companion is the cloud,' in the Supan/akhyana 3, 2. The more literal meaning of the word is
Cf. .Sat. Br.
placenta-born,' an idea thoroughly Indie.
dhi
mata
trivrz'd
VI, 5> 3> 5)
putro*tho garbha
pra^ati// pita
'

a.

in

'

st. 3,

'

ulba;/z^arayu.

Cf. also

VI,

6, 1, 24.

Professor

Kern some

years ago was good enough to impart to me his own somewhat different view
As to ^arayu^a-, I think that is
what the Norse skalds called a kenning, an oratorical periphrasis of vatsa, and this is a veiled expression for lightning cf. apa/;z vatsa as denoting the fire of lightning, and
'

the

.yrivatsa,

(Letter

of

the lightning figure on the breast of Vish;/u.'


May 10, 1887.) For the epithet vr/shan as

applied to lightning see

now my

tributions, Sixth Series,

article

Zeitschrift

on j-ushma, Con-

der Deutschen Mor-

The entire
genlandischen Gesellschaft, XLVIII, 565 ff.
a
in
RV.
has
IX, 74, 3, ue yo
passage
good parallel
vr/sh/er ita usri'yo vr/sha

neta ya itautir r/gmiya/z,


where Soma is obviously compared with lightning.
b. The edition reads
vatabhra^a(//), but the text is not

apaw

absolutely certain, as Saya/za

comments upon

vatavra^"a/z

Darila, .yigrupatram.
2

Darila, kerapari*ti ya surash/re pU/Waarike * ti; Kerava, pa/erakasamidha^.


3
pratilomakarshitas is explained in die light of ke^eshu karshita
in the MrzX'/Waka/ika 16, 25.
4

Sayawa

refers the entire stanza to aditya,

'

the sun.'

COMMENTARY.

12.

I,

25

I have substituted in my
Both readings are worthless
on the Seven Hymns, vata-abhra-^a/^.
It
is
to
an
absosee
for
once
emendation
rendered
refreshing
;

article

The entire Pada


discovery.
presents the stereotyped four component parts of a storm,
in this way they are
vata, abhra, stanayitnu, and vn'shti
catalogued in a variety of Vedic texts see the article on
certain

lutely

by

later

j-ushma just quoted,


c.

c, pp. 569-70.

1.

Read tanvar^ugo with

crasis of sandhi-hiatus.

The

juxtaposition of rz^ugo and ru^an is of the punning order.


1
d. Read trayadha
Cf. the statements about Vishwu,
.

who

himself single passes through three regions, e.g.

RV.

VIII, 29, 7, triwy eka urugayo vi akrame.


Resting upon
this parallelism I have taken ekam q^as as in apposition
with the subject of the clause.

Stanza
a.

the salient

sofcis,

V, 22, 2

symptom

VI, 20, 3.
have translated

2.

of fever,

AV.

I,

25,

2,

'

and samarika
ahka as crook
are purely
as
hook.'
Both
translations
synonymically
tentative
ahka may mean hook,' and at present any rendering of samaiika is an enfant perdu. The word occurs
once more in the Atharvan, VI, 50, 1, apparently as the
name of some pestiferous insect, or animal which destroys
I
do not know how to mediate between the two
grain.
c.

'

'

'

uses of the word.

anu^aran samankan

Sayawa, arikan a/Xana.rilan suryasya


sama/}ana.yilan samipe vartamanan

antarahgan api parivarabhutan devan.


d.

The
If

text of the Sawhita reads asya, the Padapa/7/a,


is correct in its interpretation, this is

the latter

asya.
the only instince in the

Rig and Atharvan-vedas of asya


as a masculine.
Looked at purely by itself asya grabhita
may stand for asya(/z) grabhita, and this opens out the

Cf.

my

imperatives,

article,

On

Amer. Journ.

certain
Phil.

Vedic subjunctives
27 (12 of the reprint).

irregular

V,

p.

or

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

252

possibility that the stanza stood originally in

some other

connection where a feminine was appropriate.

Stanza

The
in
in

3.

stanza, in accordance with

employed
Kauj 27, 34, along with the so-called mr/gara-suktani,
a more general remedial charm, designated by Darila as
its

context,

is

a sarvabhaisha^yam.
a.

jirshakti,

Proceedings

probably

of

the

for .yirshasakti with

American

Oriental

haplology

see

1893

Society,

The poet puns upon the


xxxv.
Pada d with saatam, although sakti is more likely
come from sa%", rather than sa.

(Journal, vol. xvi), p.

word
to

b.

in

The masculine yo

is

difficult.

have referred

it

to

the lightning (usn'yo vr/sha, or sushma/z), which involves


a considerable
translation.
kasa(/f) in

ellipsis,

indicated

by the parenthesis

in the

But it seems to me possible to refer yo to


Pada a, and to translate more simply, Release
'

him from headache, and

also from cough, which has entered


of
him.'
every joint
Namely kas, feminine, jostles with its
thematic pendant kasa, masculine, in AV. V, 22, 10 and

ir (kasa, instrumental feminine in 10; but kasam, accusative masculine in 11).


It requires no violent stretch of the

grammatical imagination to suppose that the poet unconsciously has shifted his position from the feminine in Pada a
The masculine
to its masculine doublet kasa in Pada b.
form prevails in the classical period.
c. For .rush mo, see the article on the word, cited above,

where several close

I,

14.

parallels to this passage are assembled.

Commentary to page

107.

The

history of the interpretation of this hymn is of


Weber, Ind. Stud. IV, 408 (cf. also V, 218);
and Zimmer, AltinDer
Ludwig,
Rigveda, III, 459

interest.

disches Leben, p. 314, translated and interpreted the hymn


as a marriage-hymn.
Zimmer thought that the stanzas
were spoken at the end of the ceremony, as the bridegroom

COMMENTARY.

14.

I,

253

assumed charge of the bride. The present writer, following


the indications of the practices connected with the hymn in
the Kauj-ika (36, 15-17), thought that it was a charm of
a woman against a rival, and dealt with the hymn and the

an

ritual in this sense in

Seven

Hymns

It is

VII, pp. 473-6.

article

of interest to find

the very same


proceedings in the Kaus. are

construes the

The

devoted to the subject in


Atharva-veda, Amer. Journ. Phil.

of the

hymn

in

now

that

Saya^a

spirit.

somewhat

as follows

'While reciting AV. I, 14, the wreath, pillow (?),


tooth-brush, and hair (of the woman against whom the
charm is undertaken are placed) into the skin of a cow
36, 15.

by Rudra, or of a funeral cow, and buried in the cavity


of a mortar under a pile of three stones 1
16. The hymn
is recited while the wreath is
17. Three
being ground up.
slain

tufts of hair are tied


(each)

with a black thread (and buried

under) a pile of three stones, the stones each alternately


above (each tuft).' Then follows in Sutra 18 a subsidiary
'

digging the 'fortune up again (Kcrava), saubhagyakara/zam


Then one digs her fortune up with the formula,
rite for

'

'

That fortune of thine which they have buried

we now

of three stones, or four stones, that

into a pile

dig up, along

'

with offspring and wealth."


Throughout the hymn and the ritual the

hatred manifests
in the ritual

the anustaram; in stanzas


translated above with her relatives,'
'

The

Sutra bristles with

translated

'

by

difficulties

spirit

the burial

itself in allusions to

1, 3,

of fierce

rites.

Thus

the word pitr/shu,

may

also

mean

(with

nishpramanda has been

pillow,' because Sayawa says, tadupabhuktamalya-

kandukadantadhavanakeyanam
word nishpramanda is none too
.

read nipramanda, and Darila's

(ni)khananadikarmawi. But the

certain

some MSS. and Ke.ra.va


the word is unintel-

comment on

cf. pramanda = induka/z, Kauy. 8,


I transand
Kaurika, Introduction, p. Hi).
17; 25,
32, 29,
late kora by 'skin,' because Kcrava says, uanahata tasya// /'arma/za

ligible

(kri^ayavarga^enduka/;

**vesh/ya (the passage


the

word anta/zkos-am

in

is
st.

not extracted in the edition).


But cf.
Both Darila and Ke.vava explain
4 c.

uanahata, 'slain by Rudra,' as =-varahata,

'

killed

by

fever.'

HYMNS OF THE ATHAUVA-VEDA.

254

double entente)

'

the Fathers or manes.'

among

The

first

hemistich of the third stanza, considered by itself, might be


readily interpreted as being uttered at the funeral of a

maiden

sort has

indeed, it seems possible that material of this


been worked over for the occasion. The secondary

composed primarily for the burial


service, is possibly to be assumed for stanzas 2-4 of RV.
VII, 55 (see Aufrecht, Ind. Stud. IV, 342), and for AV. II,
12, 7-8 (q. v.). The Anukramam makes the following curious
statement in regard to our hymn namas te astu (I, 13),
of stanzas,

employment

bhagam asya

14),

(I,

sukte vaidyute dve anush/ubhe,

iti

prathama;;/ vaidyuta/;/ para;;/ varuwa;;; vo*ta ya.mya.rn va,

prathamena vidyutam astaud, dvitiyena tadarthaw yamam.


There seems to be no reason for associating these hymns,
nor for regarding

I,

14 as having any relation to lightning

Stanza

Padas a and
restored

1
.

1.

apparently each hypermetric, may be


by reading, with elision and crasis, bhagasya, and
c,

mahabudhneva.
with her relatives,' as stated more explicitly
also Saya;;a.
Cf. the words pitr/shad and
in
the
lexicons.
But there seems to be intended,
araa^ur
cf. the introtoo, an allusion to the manes, i. e. to death
d.

'

pitr/shu,

in st.

So

2.

duction.

Stanza
a, b.

Soma,

2.

Saya;;a, here and in the next stanza, refers ra^an to


supporting his hypothesis by a reference to RV. X,

85, 40, where Soma is said to have been the first to woo
the maiden, being followed by Gandharva, Agni, and man.

Cf. also Vas.


c,

d.

It

Dharm. XXVIII,

5.

depends upon circumstances whether the

girl

with her (widowed) mother, or her father, or, after the


decease of her parents, with her brother cf. for the latter

lives

contingency,
1

AV.

I,

LJ, 1.

Unless the word uanahata, Kau^. 36, 15, has misled the author
of that very late and bungling performance.

I,

COMMENTARY.

14.

Stanza

255

3.

a. Saya//a comments upon kulapa instead of kulapa(//) of


the Sawhita and Padapa///a.
d. The MSS. unanimously have this Pada in the form

a shsh/ia/i .yamopyat (Padap., sa.m opyat).

Saya-va emends to

sawvapanat bhumau sa;;/pasamopyat, commenting,


the ground.' This coinher
head
sinks
to
until
tanat,
slrasa/i

'

cides with the reading of the Paippalada, and is accepted


by Shankar Pandit and Whitney; see Festgruss an Rudolf'

For the interchange between s and s, see


Amer. Or. Soc, May, 1886 (Journal,
The text in this form might mean until
vol. xiii, p. cxx).
e.
until she becomes bald.'
she scatters from her head,'

von Roth,
our

p. 90.

article in the Proc.

'

'

i.

Even

Paippalada I venture to
repeat, very hesitatingly, my suggestion (Amer. Journ. Phil.
VII, p. 476), that a sirs\via/t ke\yam opyat may have been
after the authority of the

the original text of the .S'aunakiya-.yakha.


Let her scatter
her
or
her
hair
from
let
scatter
the
hair of her
her
head,'
'

'

by growing bald, or as a sign of mourning (cf.


Contributions, Second Series, Amer. Journ. Phil. XI, pp.
336 ff.). Opya as a noun is very strange, and sam + a +

head,' either

upyat (precativc) would


object

in

seem

We

the accusative.

to require an expressed
are reminded, too, of the

'

expression kdran pra vapanti, they let


AV. XIX, 32, 2, as a sign of mourning.

Stanza

down

their hair,'

4.

The

juxtaposition of Kajyapa and Gaya reminds


one of Ka^yapa of Gaya, who plays a conspicuous part in
the Buddha legend.
Asita is another worthy in the same
a, b.

See the words

narrative.

on IV,
c.

in

gami,
'

language,
striya//

in the Pet.

Lex., and

cf.

our note

20, 7.

the broader sense of the word

in

female relatives of the householder.'

cf.

Nirukta

III, 6.

the later
Saya;/a,

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

2S6

I,

Commentary to page

16.

65.

The Kaiuika, 47, 23-4, presents this hymn in the sixth


book, devoted to the witchcraft practices (abhiarika//i), as
follows: 23. 'While reciting AV. 1, 16 he who performs
the practice collects ground lead, and puts it into the food
(of his enemy), or upon the ornaments (upon his person).
24. With a staff, made from a decayed bamboo-reed, as

long as an arm, and ornamented

he strikes (the enemy).'

*,

According to the Paribhasha-sutra, Kaui\

8, 18,

the word

'
'

lead

be construed very broadly,

in these practices is to

including both lead

'

itself,

'

river-lead

commentators, river-foam),
a lizard.

e.

(i.

according to the

and the head of

iron-filings,

In Contributions, Third Series, Journ.

XV,

Amer. Or.

have endeavoured to show that


pp. 157 ff.,
this class of practices is founded upon the famous legend of
Indra and Namu^i, in which Indra slays Namui with the
foam of the waters.' The other substances seem to be
Soc.

'

substituted for practical reasons, being

and more readily handled.


been

more

They may,

regarded as available for

this

easily obtained
of course, have

purpose for other

reasons, that escape us.

The hymn has been

translated

by Weber,
The Anukramazn

409;

Grill-, pp.

hymn

as

atanam, charm

ingly

it

in

1,
'

figures

75.

to chase

away

the series called

Ga//amala, Ath. Fans. 32, 3

describes the

with,'

and accord-

atanaga//a

see Kaiu.

Stanza

Ind. Stud. IV,

8,

in

the

25 note.

1.

Apastamba's Dharmasutra I, 11, 31, 21 we have:


During the day the sun protects the creatures, during the
Therefore let him eagerly strive to pronight the moon.
tect himself on the night of the new-moon by purity, cona.

In

'

The term
'

(with ghee);

alawkr/ta here seems to

mean

technically 'anointed

see Darila at Kaor. 48, 3,

and

Kauj. 47, 40. 44.

cf.

I,

and

tinence,

is

COMMENTARY.

J.

adapted to the season.'

Tait. S. II,

36, 3
sative ratrim
;

rites

2, 2, 2

Maitr. S.

257

AV. IV,
The accuand we should

Cf. also

II, 1, 11.

not favoured by the metre,

Saya;/a, sarvasyaw ratrau udasthu/^ uttish-

expect ratryam.
//^anti.

reads bhra^am for vra^am, to wit


ratriw
bhragam bhra^amanam or again, bhra^amanam
purushaw hiwsitum udasthu//. He repeats this reading when quoting the stanza in his comment on II, 9, 1.
b.

Saya/za

ra^ani;/z
.

note on vatabhra^a//, I, 12, i b


c. Saya;/a takes tuny a in the sense of fourth,' as alluding to the well-known legend of the three older brothers of
Cf. also the

'

Agni who were worn out in the sacrificial service before the
see RV. X. 51 and 52
.Sat. Br. I, 2, 3, 1
present Agni
Tait. S. II, 6,6; Mahabh! Ill, 222, 7 = 14214, &c. (cf.
Ludwig, Der Rigveda, V, 504-5). But turiya is the equivalent of tura, e. g. RV. VIII, 52, 7.
;

Stanza

2.

For the uses of lead in the ritualistic texts, see Weber,


p. 410, and our article on Indra and Namu^i, quoted
above in the introduction.
1.

c.j

Stanza

3.

For a full discussion of vfshkandha, either some disease,


seems to us more likely, a kind of demon, see the

or, as

note on

II, 4, 1.

I,

Commentary to page

17.

22.

This charm against flow of blood is the only one of the


in the Atharvan.
K&yava specifies that it is employed
against internal and external flow of blood and (excessive)
kind

menstruation, atha lohitaw vahati jariramadhye bahLr ka.


rudhiravrawe
strira^aso^tipravartane bhaisha^ya/0
.

rudhirapravahe

ka..

The Kaiuika

17 (the

practitioner)

attaches to

the fol-

'

wound) with a bamboo-staff containing


[42]

it

0-13: While reciting AV. I,


strews dust and sand around (the

lowing performances at 26,

five joints (accord-

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

2f.8

Kcrava he places the

ing to

staff upon the

wound

Kaiu.

[cf.

T
sawstabhya], and then strews the dust and sand ).
2
12. He gives (the
He ties on mud from a marsh

26, 9,
11.

13. He (also) gives (him)


patient a solution of it) to drink.
to drink a mixture of curds and ground sesame, along with
The chief point of relation befour tips of millet-grass.'

tween the practices and the hymn is the application of


a bandage or poultice of dust and sand which seems indicated in the fourth stanza with the words sikatavati
dhanur.

The

first

stanza of the

Yaska's Nirukta,

Anukramam

III,

4,

designates

hymn

is

quoted with variants

from an unknown source


the

as

hymn
Grill

508
pp.
wig,
Hillebrandt's Vedachrestomathie, p. 46.
III,

Stanza

the

yoshiddevatyam.

Previous translations by Weber, Ind. Stud. IV, 441

Der Rigveda,

in

16, 76

cf.

Ludalso

1.

In Yaska's Nirukta, III, 4, the stanza occurs in the following version amur ya yanti^amaya// sarva lohitavasasa//

abhratara iva yoshas tish///anti (Durga, tish///antu) hatavartmana/z. Durga declares this to be an Atharvan-stanza,
and says that the women are the blood-vessels (na.dya/i)

which

shall stand

The word

lative

valuka
2

It

like brotherless maidens,

debarred

pawsusikatabhi/?, which I have translated as a copudust and sand,' is regarded by the commen-

compound,

tators as a

still,

'

descriptive.

Darila,

pawsuvat jlakshwadhuli^ sikata

Kcrava, rathyaya// pawsun.


is not
quite clear whether the armakapalika

is

tied

on

as

an

amulet or as a bandage upon the wound usually badhnati is the


terminus technicus for the tying on of an amulet.
Nor are the
:

commentators agreed as to the meaning of the word K.es. kedaBut the word occurs also in Tait.
ramratika, and pahkamr/ttika.
Ar. V, 2, 13 (cf. also Tait. S. V, 1, 6, 2), and in the commentary
on the Tait. Ar., p. 394, it is explained as 'potsherds deposited in
;

the

decayed portion of the village/ >ira/tane guna.gra.ma.dese


bhandamsan. Sayawa to our passage, .mshkapahkamrzt-

avasthita
tika

kedarammtika

va.

17.

I,

COMMENTARY.

259

from the sa;;/tanakarma and the pi/^adana (ancestral


In AV. I,
practised by the family of their husband.
the girl

who has

lost

her father and mother

rites)

14, 2

depicted as
Cf. Roth's comment,
is

house of her brother.


and Zimmer, p. 328. The exact point of the comparison is not quite clear, and Zimmer's translation of hatavar/^as as
deprived of support or protection seems to
an
idea not in the text. See RV. I, 124,
occidental
import
and
7; IV, 5, 5,
especially the statement, na*bhratrim
one
upaya/CV/eta,
may not marry a brotherless girl,' in the
on
Nirukta
Manu III, 1 1 Ya"avalkya
III, 5
commentary

living in the
p. 25,

'

'

'

I,

b.

Gautama XXVIII, 20.


Vasish/^a XVII, 16
lohita, with double entente, red and 'blood.'

c.

Read abhratareva

S3

'

'

the Anukrama/n, upon the strength

of the apparently additional syllable, designates the stanza


as a bhuri^".

Stanza

3.

rather whimsically translates sahasrasya hira;/am 'von den tausend gelben.'


It would seem as though
b.

Ludwig

the stanza intends to bring out a distinction between hira and


dhamani, the former being the smaller and the latter the

Accordingly, 'veins' and 'arteries.'


2
VII,
yet
35,
(see the note there) both hira and
dhamani apparently have the more general sense of inte-

larger blood-vessels.

And

in

'

such as entrails, vaginal passage, and the like.


the
Naturally,
knowledge of internal physiology is of the
sort.
For hira, see Aufrecht in Kuhn's Zeitschrift,
vaguest
rior canals,'

III,

199

Weber, Omina und Portenta,


Stanza

p. 346.

4.

Our translation of this stanza derives its main support


from the practices above, which seem to imply that sand is
put upon or about the wound. Saya;za gives the passage
a totally different bent
he takes sikatavati dhanifr br/hati'
;

as the designation of one of the canals in the body which


contains the sand that results in calculi in the bladder,
sikata xagkmsx tadvati nkd\, 'sikata, i.e. sand, the canal

containing that.'

He

says,

further,

S 2

that

it

is

the canal

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

260
(na^/i)

which generates

more
and the
^ayo

calculi (a.ymari),

and

finally describes

'

explicitly as a kind of canal crooked like a bow,


seat of the urine,' dhanur dhanurvad vakro mutra-

it

And

nadivisesha./i.

he quotes a similar statement from

a Smrz'ti, mutra^ayo dhanur vakro vastir ity abhidhiyate 1


It would seem accordingly that he imagines the bladder,
.

some

or

similar vessel, capable as it is of producing sand or


agent to stop the flow of blood an inter-

calculi, a fitting

esting conceit at

any

rate

Grill thinks that the entire

But Kau.rika, at any rate,


and
the
is,
original diaskeuasis of the
AV. postulates four or more stanzas for each hymn of
the first book
see Seven Hymns of the Atharva-veda,
stanza

found

is

it

a later addition.

where

it

Amer. Journ.

Phil.

VII, 470
the deviation in the metre.
c.

The P&da

I,

is

a formula

18.

ff.

Against

see

RV.

I,

this,

there

is

only

191, 6.

Commentary to page

109.

Sayaz/a, in the introduction to the hymn, describes the


practices associated with it at Kau^. 42, 19-21 as designed

remove the blemishes of a woman afflicted with the


mentioned in the samudrika-treatises.
These blemishes are supposed to be on her face, hands,
feet, and other members, mukhahastapadadyangeshu samuto

evil characteristics

drikoktadurlakshawayuktaya//

The samudrika-books

strives

taddoshanivrzttaye.

on chiromancy) treat of
characteristics, for in his comment on
(treatises

both good and evil


st. 1 c he says, yani
samudrika^astraprasiddhani
Cf. Pet. Lex. under
bhagyakaraz/i ihnani santi.

and Kcrava to Kauy. 42,


vyakhyatam, and note also
a/akshate karma.
dra,

The
'While

19,

2.

sau-

samu-

samudrike strilakshawaw

Kauj-.

18,

38,

samudra

ity

42, 19.
practices of the Kauj-ika are as follows
reciting AV. I, 18, the face of the woman afflicted
:

Cf. with these statements Sayawa's

dhanurakaro mutiajayo

vastir u^yate.

comment on

vasti,

I,

3, 6,

I,

with

COMMENTARY.

8.

26 I

sprinkled after each verse, comof hair at the right.


20. Having

evil characteristics is

at the braid

mencing

made an

offering of chaff

from a vessel made of the wood

of a palfLva-tree (butea frondosa), he pours the rest (of the


21. Chaff, husks, refuse of
chaff) after (the first oblation).
grain,

and shavings are placed upon the heel of her

left

foot.'

There are good and

evil

characteristics (lakshmi

= lak-

AV. VII,

sha;/a,
115), and the main point of the pracremoval
tices is their
by washing, and by placing all kinds
of offal where it will easily drop from the person under
treatment, and cause symbolically the removal of the bad
cf.

points.

The hymn has been


IV, 411

translated

and Geldner, Vedische Studien,


charm is interpreted erroneously
house-cat.

Soc.

XV,

Cf.

III,

498

(cf.

the Journ.

in

Am.

Or.

153, note.

Saya;/a reads

lakshmam

1.

for

lakshmyam, commenting,

To lalamyam
asaubhagyakara;;/
lalame bhavaw tilakasthanagatam.

he

ihnam.

The Pada

d.

also 338)
where the

pp. 313 ff.,


as directed against the

I,

our brief criticism

Stanza
a.

Ind. Stud.

by Weber,

Ludwig, Der Rigveda,

ff.

with double sandhi.

Ludwig

we

read pra^ayaratim
would cure the passage by

hypermetric, unless

is

remarks,

substituting nir for pra^ayai, but the latter word seems


guaranteed by AV. V, 25, 8, pra^ayai tva (tva a) nayamasi,

and possibly

this

is

the original reading

(cf.

Geldner,

1.

In adhering to the traditional text I have supposed


314).
the meaning to be that she who has the character of an

marriage and child-birth by the


Very problematic this is, to be sure. Saya;/a
takes pra^ayai with Pada c, yani
saubhagyani Oilman

Arati

rendered

is

fit

for

charm.

tani

asmaka;// pra^ayai

va;;; ni/;saritani
.

asaubhagyakara;;i

prapayama/;

bhavantu,
ihnani

yani pur-

arati;;/

.ratrum

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

262

Stanza
a.

ara/zim

is

air. Aey.,

'

waste, forest/

ara;/ya,

2.

reminding us of arawa, 'strange,'


and ara/zyaz/f (-"), the personified

forest, RV. X, 146.


Sayawa reads arawim,
aramawim
alakshmi;;/
daurbhagyakaraw ihcommenting,

goddess of the

nam

kari?/z

yadva. aramani;// sarvada parya/anakari/nm artiShankar Pandit retains the reading

va alakshmim.

MSS., savishak

of the

Saya;/a

reads

(for savishat

savishat.

Cf.

our edition), but


in the Kawva-

in

the Va^\ S.

1
(= IX, 5; XVIII, 30 of the
and
Ind. Stud. IV, 248, 412;
Weber,
Madhya7dina-.rakha),
XIII, 108. See also Apast. 5r. XIII, 7, 13.

.yakha

X,

2,

1;

XX,

1,

Stanza

treats all these epithets as referring directly to

Sayawa
a

woman

4.

we

prefer to regard

them

as personifications of

imagined as dwelling within the person whose


characteristics are foul.
Saya;/a, vrzshasye*va danta yasnari
sa
vrzshadati
sthuladanta
ykh
gaur iva sedhati
dhamati
stri
vikritsun
^abdayate
ga/zati*ti gosedha
iti
vidhama, phutkaradivividha^abdakariwi
lalamya;//
lalamasthane lala/aprante bhavam
vitid/iyaw vueshe/za
WdJi&m vilitf%am, vilia%am iva sthitaz// kcrana?// pratiloevil qualities,

myarupam.

Our rendering

of vilidhyam

not at

is

all

certain.

I,

19.

Commentary to page

120.

The hymn is one of a list of battle-charms, sawgramikai (sc. suktani), rubricated in Kaui 14, 7, and associated
-

ceremonies of a general character, preparatory to


going to battle. The Gazzamala, Ath. Parij-. 32, 13, has
a similar list, somewhat more extensive, which is entitled
with

apara^itaga/za
introduction to
:

see the note at


I, 2.

The hymn

Kaui

is

also

14,

7,

and

cf.

the

employed against

certain portentous occurrences, as when Brahma//as carry


arms (Kauj-. 104, 3), when images of the gods dance, shake,

laugh, sing, or indulge in other freaks (Kau^.

105,

1),

or

COMMENTARY.

2 2.

I,

263

when a bull sucks a cow (Kaiu. 113, 3). Cf. also Ath.
Pam. 17, 2. The hymn has been translated by Weber,
Indische Studien, IV, 413

Manuel Vedique,

also

cf.

Bergaigne

et

Henry,

p. 134.

Stanzas

3,

4.

These two stanzas are an expanded version of RV. VI,


75, 19-

The

latter part of that

which have been freely


Atharvan.

I,

22.

contains suggestions

hymn

utilised in the battle-charms of the

Commentary to page

The proceedings

7.

of the practitioner, Kaiu. 26, 14-2

r,

are entirely symbolic


the main effort is to banish the
yellow colour to yellow creatures and objects (the sun),
where it properly belongs, and to derive for the patient
;

redness from that quarter where it is peculiarly at home,


namely a red bull cf. RV. I, 62, 9, and Aufrecht in the
;

introduction to his edition of the Rig-veda, vol.


The practices are as follows

ii,

p. xvii.

'While reciting AV. I, 22 (the priest) gives (the


patient water) to sip, which is mixed with hair from (a red
15. And
bull) the object mentioned in the mantra (st. 1).
having poured (water) upon the back of the bull (he lets
the patient drink it).
16. He ties on as an amulet upon
26, 14.

the (patient) sitting upon the skin of a bull (the piece of


skin) pierced by the peg with which it is fastened (when it
1
is
after having steeped it in cow's milk and
spread out)
,

anointed

it

patient the milk) to drink.

17. He gives (the


feeds (the patient) with

with the dregs of ghee

The words

18.

He

the piece of skin,' &c. are all of them a tentative


arma//o vistaraya
to which Darila,
of
jankudhanam,
rendering
kilakabandha/2 .yahkusthapanam.
Sayaa, in the introduction to
the

hymn,

Kejava, go
HI, 7, 1.
2

'

raktagO/('arma/('//idrama/nm

raktaarma&dramamm.

Cf. Kau.r. 7, 15.

Cf. also

tanmambandhanam.
27, 29, to AV.

Kau^

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

264

made of haridra (turmeric, or curcuma, a yellow


daubs
him from head to foot both with the remnants
plant),
of the porridge and (additional porridge) from which he has
porridge

not eaten, (places him upon a couch), ties the (three birds)
mentioned in the mantra 1 by their left legs to the foot of
the couch, and washes (the patient) off (upon the birds).
19. He makes the patient step forward (after having first
given him a stirred drink, mantha, in accordance with the

paribhasha at Kauj-. 7, 18). 20. He makes (the patient)


address (with the hymn) the chattering (birds). 21. Having
glued together with lac the hairs from the breast (of the
red bull) and getting them covered with gold (the patient
on as an amulet).'

ties that

Saya;/a in his introduction defines the purpose of the


hymn as against heart-disease and jaundice, hr/drogaka-

miladirogopai'antaye

Kcrava advances a broader construcit cures in addition


epilepsy and

according to which

tion,

fainting
(vismaya ?),
apasmara-vismaya-hrz'droga-kamalakarohi/zakani bhaisha^yani.
Adalbert Kuhn, in Kuhn's
Zeitschrift, XIII, 113 ff., has assembled from Greek, Roman,
and Teutonic sources notions and practices analogous to

by Kamika. The principle that the yellow


disease belongs by right to yellow objects, birds, and plants,
is there again
applied practically, with a touch, here and
those elaborated

similia similibus curantur. In addition to


Kuhn's translation we note Weber's, Ind. Stud. IV, 415 ff.
cf. also Ludwig, Der
Rigveda, III, 343 Bergaigne et Henry,
Manuel Vedique, pp. 134-5; Zimmer, Altindisches Leben,
p. 388
Wise, Hindu System of Medicine, 247 ff. (espethere, of

The juka,

in

his

ropawaka, and haridrava mentioned in

st.

4.

Sayaa,

introduction,

JukakashMa^ukagopitanakakhyanaOT pakshiam. Darila defines haridrava^ by haridravarwa^ &/aka>. Ke^ava,


suka/i kash//;a(mu)sukam
fa gopitilakazrc X'a.
They seem to
(!)
refer respectively to the parrot, the thrush, and the
yellow wagtail,
all doubtless birds
The yellow jaundice of the
prevailingly yellow.
patient,

accentuated by his coat of yellow curcuma,

down upon
st.

4,

and

the yellow birds, where it belongs.


the introduction to VII, 116.

is

washed
on

Cf. the notes

COMMENTARY.

2 2.

I,

265

daily 249, where turmeric still appears prominent among


Stanzas similar to I, 22 occur,
the curative agencies).

RV.

11-12; Tait. Br.

50,

I,

IV, 15,

Ill, 7, 6,

22-23; Apast. Sr.

1.

Stanza

1.

For hr/ddyota the RV., Tait. Br., and Apast. Sr. have
hrz'droga (cf. Ridraga, Wise 321); see also AV. V, 20, 12
b.

VI, 24,
9

1.

VI,

14,

2; XII,

3,

Still
1

another

hr/dayamaya, AV. V,

is

For the root dyut,

127, 3.

22:

name

cf.

AV.

30,

IV, 12,

hr/d-dyota literally means 'heart-break;'


'

Saya;/a takes it as heart-burning,' hr/daya;;/ sa/^tapayati


(cf. Lat. splendida bilis).

The Vedic Hindu

e.

is

deeply impressed with the red-

ness of the cow, which is contrasted with its white milk,


RV. I, 62, 9, &c.
sage mir wie geht es zu, gibt weisse
'

Perhaps we have here, too, an

milch die rothe kuh.'

sion to the divine Rohita in the thirteenth

AV.

book

allu-

of the

see Henry, Les Hymnes Rohitas, and our ContribuFourth Series, Amer. Journ. Phil. XII, 429 ff.

tions,

Stanza

The

2.

c, d, seems to be occasioned
a
which
is
sort
of
vox
media fit for both second
by ayam,
and third persons singular.

anacoluthori in Padas

Stanza
a.

3.

have followed Bergaigne and Henry, Manuel Ve-

dique, p. 135 note, in emending the unintelligible rohi;/ir


the cows whose divinity
devatya(//) to rohi;ndevatya(//),
is Rohiwi.'
I differ from these scholars in
co-ordinating it
'

with gavo, rather than supplying rikaJi

mentioned Contributions,

see the above-

is the female
p. 437.
of Rohita, a personification of the red, ascending (ruh),
The stanzas devoted to Rohi;/i occur AV.
ruling sun.

XIII,
tya\/i

1,

22

ff.

devatasu

madhenvadayo

Saya/za's
bha.va./i

ga.va/i

Rohi//i

comment on Padas
.

uktavarwa

santi,

a, b, is,

deva-

(sc. roh'vn//) ya//

uta api ya/i

ka.-

manushyasaw-

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

266

bandhinyo roh'mi/i roh'wya/i lohitavar;/a gava/z


ubhayavidhabhir gobhi/i.
Stanza
b.

ropawaka.
thrush
'

jrarika,

(harit pakshi

Kaur.
cf.

santi tabhi/z

4.

glossed by Saya^a at RV. I, 50, 12 by


Sayawa on our hymn, twice, kash/^a^uka
the word is not in the lexicons).
Darila at
is

;'

26, 20. haridravar//aj- ^i/aka// (not in the lexicons

klkkika.,

RV. X,

146,

2).

Kcrava, kash^a(mu)sukam

(!),

and kash///aju(sh)ka^andana (! a kind of sandal). The commentators seem therefore to waver between a bird and
a plant.
c. haridrava

is glossed by Saya;/a at RV. VIII,


35, 7
by pakshin, but the same work at I, 50, 12, as also the

scholiast at Tait. Br. Ill,

7,

22, has

6,

haritaladrumeshu

(a kind of tree

Saya//a on our hymn, twice, gopitana!).


haridvan/a//
kakhya
pakshiwa/* (gopitanaka is not in the
but
is
lexicons,
Darila, ib., pitas kitsikah
gopita
wagtail ')
'

Ke^ava, twice, gopitilaka.

I,

23.

Commentary to page

16.

The
are

practices connected with this and the next hymn


denned by the commentators as a cure for white

leprosy, .svetakush/^apanodanaya (Sayawa), ,svetakush///abhaisha^yani (Kerava). They are stated at Kauj-. 26, 2224, as follows: 22. 'While reciting AV. I, 23 and I, 24 (the

having rubbed dung (upon the sores) until they are


smears upon them the substances, mentioned in the
mantras 1
24. (The
23. He cuts off the white (scurf).

priest)

red,

patient ?), having been covered, performs the rites to


the Maruts.'
The latter, described at Kau.y. 41, 1-7, are

Kejava and Saya;za mention bhrmgara^a (eclipta prostata


note the pun between ra^a and ra^ani, &c. in I, 23, 1), haridra
;

(yellow sandal, or yellow turmeric), indravaru;/i (colocynth), and


nilika.
Darila has a somewhat different statement, too corrupt to

be reported here.

COMMENTARY.

23.

267

primarily designed to produce rain, and their employment


here, secondarily, may be intended to put the patient into
a sweat. The point is problematic and not cleared up by

the scholiasts.

The

entire

II, 4, 4, 1. 2.

hymn
The

repeated with variants at Tait. Br.


hymn is there

is

third stanza of the next

added to the charm.


Both this and the next hymn have been translated by
Weber, Ind. Stud. IV, pp. 416 ff. Ludwig, Der Rigveda,
2
III, 506, 509; Grill
pp. 19, jj ff.; cf. Wise, Hindu System of Medicine, pp. 258 ff. Zimmer, Altindisches Leben,
and Bergaigne et Henry, Manuel Vedique, p. 135.
p. 391
The Anukramam designates I, 23 as vanaspatyam, and
;

I,

24 as asurivanaspatidevatyam.
Stanza
refers

Sayawa

1.

the adjectives dark, &c, to the plants,

The word ra^ani


others designating night) has also the meanCf. the scholiast at Tait. Br. II, 4,
ing 'curcuma longa.'
oshadhe
atra haridra. ra^ani^ti
4, 1, ra^anakshame
indicated

by Kaiuika's commentators.

(as well as

all

The two meanings

ke^it.
'

rich

in colour/

by

are blended with the idea of

virtue of

which the word puns with

ra^aya.

Stanza
b.

considerable

number

2.

of

MSS., here

as well as in

3 d, followed by Saya;/a, read pr/thak for pr/shat, which


also makes good sense.
The Tait. Br. also reads pr/shat.
c.

This seems to be addressed to the patient

colour shall return

him.

to

Grill

takes

his natural

offence

the

at

and proposes to refer sva/; to the plant cf.


also Ludwig, and Bergaigne et Henry,
But the
c, note.
plants are of a colour different from the leper's spots (hence
their virtue), and sva/^ is inappropriate.
Saya;/a, as in our
he
translation,
rug/^a
svakiya/; prag avasthito varua/i.
parenthesis

1.

Cf. Aufrecht, Festgruss

an Otto von Bohtlingk,

p. 3.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

268

And still more explicitly the scholiast at Tait. Br., dehasya


svakiya/^ purvasiddho var//a//.

Commentary to page

24.

I,

For the application of the


previous translations,
is

repeated at Tait. Br.

hymn

the

in

the introduction to

cf.

16.

Stanza 3

23.

I,

and

ritual,

II, 4, 4, 2.

Stanza

1.

Saya;/a states the little legend (akhyayika) as follows


plant here in question was the gall (pitta, dosha)
:

The dark

bird

of the primordial

suparwa (garutman).

The Asuri

with him
stri) engaged
The gall captured in the battle she
and conquered.
embodied into the form of trees (nili, and so forth). This
neat story would commend itself at once but for the word
she conquered (Say.^itavati),
gitsi, which does not mean
but she was conquered.' The story is so pat as to tempt
to the emendation ^"itva, or (as Ludwig suggests) ^itam.

maya ka^ana

(asurawa/;/

in battle

'

'

'

In general, of course, asura in the Atharvan, as elsewhere,


powers conquered by the Devas,

stands for the hostile

AV.

VI, 7, 2 VIII, 5, 3 IX,


XI,
5, 7; to, 10. 15; XII,
2,17.18; X, 3, 11; 6, 22-8;
In
But
a
tone
different
1,
15.
prevails occasionally.

e. g.

VI,

108,

VI, 100,
antidote

II, 27, 3.

IV, 19, 4

in
Asuras are said to know wisdom
an
as
is
which
employed
3 the ant (upa^ika),
against poison, is called the daughter of the

the

3; VI, leg, 3 they dig remedies into


the ground, and finally, in VII, 38, 2, the Asuri attracts to
herself Indra from the company of the gods, so that,
according to K&tk. S. XIII, 5, he lives with the Asuras (cf.

Asuras;

in

II,

3,

479 V, 250, 453). The sense of Saya;za's


Note also that asun itself
therefore not irrelevant.

Ind. Stud. Ill,


is

story
is the

name
Amer. Journ.

of a magic plant

of the text

retained,

is

Phil.

X, 165
it

ff.).

is

(cf.
If,

Magoun, Asuri-kalpa,

on the other hand,

hard to see

herself of the gall of the suparwa, unless

how

^"ita

she possessed

by way

of revenge,

COMMENTARY.

24.

I,

Hence we have,

or theft.

dation ^itva.

hesitatingly,

269

adopted the emen-

A later transcriber, shocked by the imputation

that the Asuri

was

might easily have made the

victorious,

change.

Weber, 1. c, p. 418, regards supar//a as the sun and asun


as the night, who, having been conquered by the sun, withdraws into the forest and assumes the form of trees
Der
'

der zuerst erstand, dessen gall' du gewesen bist.


Die Asuri im kampf besiegt machte die baum' zu ihrer
form.'
But there is scarcely any occasion here for a
vogel,

the eagle and the boar naturally find


mythical eagle
plants, the one with his eye, the other with his snout (see
II, 27, 2
V, 14, 1), and the legend must in some way rest
upon this natural fact. This translation, too, establishes no
:

connection between the

Very

d. For vanaspatin
accordance with the

e.g. aj-vo

V,

2,

first

and second parts of the stanza.

similarly Grill.

the

Paippalada has vanaspati// in


usage of the Brahma//as,

common

k/7'tva, Tait. Br. Ill, 8, 12,

rupam

2; Apast. Sr.

krz'sh//o rupa//z krz'tva, Tait. Br. Ill, 7, 4, 8.

See

Pet. Lex. s. v. rupa


Delbruck, Altindische Syntax, p. 103
(column 421); Ind. Stud. X 1 1 1, 1 1 1 This makes a decidedly
;

better construction

'
:

having assumed the form of a

tree.'

Ludwig, translating the 5aunakiya-text, '(die Asuri) hat es


zur farbe der baume gemacht,'and similarly Saya/za^ayena
labdhaz/z tat pittas rupa;//

akaram
I

akarshit, tad eva

have followed their

akre,

rupam

lead,

oshadhyatmana sevyam

aha, vanaspatin nilyadin.


I

though

am

for

my

part

unacquainted with any such construction of kar (with three


accusatives note also the middle, fcakre).
;

Stanza
a, b.

2.

Saya//a treats idam as follows

nirmita/// nilyadikam,

interpretation

of

a branch of medicine

manusha.

The

1.

st.

ida///

supar/zapittena

which corresponds with


In

his

and our

the later literature asuri

is

see the Pet. Lex. under asuri 3) and


metre of the two Padas is irregular ida///
;

kilasanaLyanam seems to be a gloss.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

27O

Stanza
a.

The European

edition reads jama,

forth as the title of the

two of Shankar Pandit's


jyamaka, Kau^.

11);

8,

corresponds with ra^ani

I,

The

25.

4.

which Ludwig puts

The

hymn.
Paippalada, as also
have
MSS.,
jyama (cf. j-amaka =
this is undoubtedly correct, and
in

I,

1.

23,

Commentary to page

practice which

Kau^ika reports

for this

character, but totally different


those connected with AV. V, 22 and VI, 20.

similar

3.

in

in

hymn

from

detail

The

is

practising

according to Sutra 26, 25, has an axe heated then


the axe is quenched in water, and the water thus heated is
priest,

poured upon the patient: yad agnir iti parayu; ^apaws


Darila renders this quite
tapayati kvathayaty avasi;Xati.
clear, paraj-una kvathayaty udakawz
taptenodakena
The heated water is supposed doubt*vasi//2/ati rogi;/a;;z.
.

less to

draw the heat of the fever out of the patient, as it


him (attractio similium). Keyava describes the

flows from

performance as a ^"varabhaisha^yaw, nitya^vare vela^vare


satata^vare ekantarita^vare Mturthika^vare ka rz'tu^vare

ka

stanza 4

cf.

c,

d.

Similarly Saya^a in the introduction,

The
aikahikaduita^varasawtata^varavela^varadi^antaye.
hymn has been treated by Weber, Indische Studien, IV,
Grohmann, ib. IX, 384 ff. Ludwig, Der Rigveda,
Zimmer, Altindisches Leben, pp. 381, 384
511
et
It is
Henry, Manuel Vedique, p. 136.
Bergaigne

419

ff.

III,

quoted also at Kau.y. 26,

note, as one of the

.yanagawa of the Ga//amala, Ath. Fans. 32,

Stanza

The

takmana-

7.

1.

stanza

is not quite clear.


Sayaa refers to the
the
which
of
Sutra,
are,
course, themselves
practices
based upon suggestions derived from the mantra.
When
entered
the
waters
burned refers doubtless to
Agni having

in

'

'

the circle of well-known legends that deal with Agni's escape


to the waters.
Two hymns of the Rig-veda, X, 51 and

52, deal with this subject,

with

COMMENTARY.

25.

I,

protean variations,

and

it is

one of the stock-legends,

the Brahma//as

in

Studien, III, 467), e.g. Sat. Br. I,


Tait. S. II, 6, 6, 1 ff.
VI, 2, 8, 4 ff.
;

same legend,

2*]\

2,

3,

For

Indische

(cf,

3, 13-16;
forms of the

3,

later

Adolf Holtzmann's essay, Agni nach den


Mahabharata, p. 11, and especially
Vorstellungen
The basis of these
Mahabh. Ill, 14214 ff. = 222, 7 ff
legends is the plain observation that lightning comes from
the clouds, that is, the waters (cf. Nirukta VII, 23), and
perhaps, again, that it strikes the water upon earth, and
disappears in it. This again connects the takman with
See
lightning, which is conceived as a cause of fever, &c.
It is perhaps not
our introductions to V, 22, and I, 12.
see

des

going too far to suppose that the connection of fever with


lightning is another way of saying that fever is associated
especially with the rainy season, and that indeed seems to

be the purport of the stanza the period of the lightning is


Cf. Grohmann,
the time when the takman originates.
c,
:

I.

p.

403
a.

Zimmer,

I.e.,

384.

p.

apo, the nominative for the accusative, especially in

the AV., as conversely api/i the accusative appears as


see Whitney's Sanskrit Grammar,
nominative
393 a.
;

The

expression apo

pravLsya, as in

RV. X,

51,

i,

pravive\ritha *p&/i.
b.

dharma-dhr/ta// with alliteration.

does not refer to pious men, as

is

The

expression

assumed by Weber,

Grohmann, and Zimmer and that too, although their


translation would seem to receive support from RV. X, 51, 5,
come (O Agni), pious
ehi manur devayiir ya.gnaka.ma/1,
men desire to sacrifice.' The meaning of the first two
;

'

Padas would according to this be as follows When Agni


hid himself in the waters, and men being thus deprived of
the carrier of the sacrifice approached him humbly, with
:

the purpose of inducing

Weber,

1.

c.,

him

to be sure,

attitude of the pious to the

to resume his functions

quite differently, refers the

But

humble

dread of the supposed consequence of

Agni's action, namely, the fever.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

272

dharma-dhr/ta/z cannot refer to men, and Ludwig is quite


die erhalter der satzungen (die gotter).'

correct in his view,

The dharman

is

'

upheld by the gods

Vishwu

so, e. g.

is

described as dharmazzi dharayan in RV. I, 22, 18; Indra


as dharma-kr/t in VIII, 98, 1
cf. also the epithet dhrz'ta;

vrata as applied to Varu/za at AV. VII, 83, 1.


Reference
is therefore made to the suppliant attitude of the gods, as

they induce Agni by promises to


waters and attend to his business.

Weber

come

forth from the

'

parama/zz^anftraw dort is
hauptsachlich dein Entstehen,' and Grohmann and Zimmer
adopt this very pregnant rendering. Ludwig, on the other
c.

translates tatra

hand, says, 'da war deine erste geburt.'


that neither translation

RV.

is

correct.

It

The Pada

seems
is

to

me

formulaic

hymn to the horse, aj-vastuti) we have,


ta
ahii/z
yatra
paramdz/z ^anftram, and Ludwig translates
in

I,

163, 4 (the

Cf.
(902), wo man sagt, dass dein hochster geburtsort.'
The expression paramaz/z
also parame ^ani'tre in X, 56, 1.
'

the equivalent of parame ^anman in


RV. II, 9, 3, which is contrasted with avare sadhasthe.
The former obviously refers to Agni, the lightning, and,

^"anitraw, moreover,

is

takman is the effect of that Agni, the same origin


assumed for him. Hence I have translated the expres-

as the
is

sion

origin on high.'

'

by

Stanza

2.

or whether thy origin is a splinter-seeking


But throughout
one,' a bold figure as applied to the takman.
this hymn the parallelism between fire and the takman is
b.

'

Literally,

the mind of the poet, and the phenomenon of


Agni's growth, as he eagerly licks the split wood, is metain

uppermost

phorically transferred to
prettily,

'sei

Zimmer,

less vividly,

mend
result,

oder
'

geburt scin

translates

dein

his

obscure

mag spitze stachel suchend (stechend) deine


he, at any rate, unnecessarily abandons the

metaphor of the

samuham

Weber

geburtsort.'
zungelndes,
oder wenn deine geburtsstatte glim-

Splitterfeuer,
'

disease.

Ludwig does not comment upon

ist.'
'

his

fire.

Sayazza, .rakalyazzz dahyazzz kashz*/za-

IkhaXi ^akalye/ agni/z.

have

c.

left

COMMENTARY.

25.

I,

the word hruVu

273

untranslated, as

have

not been able to discover any basis for the existing trans'

lation,

cramp,' which Weber,

Weber's

Ludwig adopts.

considerations

logical

recorded

of

1.

c, p. 420, proposes,
is

of the takman or the

symptoms

and

derived from etymoinsufficient cogency, and the

result

^ara

to

fail

include cramps.
The word occurs only in this hymn, in
evident alliteration with haritasya, and I should not wonder
if

the word would yet turn out to have


'

with

some connection

For haritasya deva, see the note on V,

yellow.'

22, 2 a.

Stanza

The takman

b.

3.

as a son of Varuz/a presents a snatch of

and deeper view of the origin of disease,


to
which
it is due to the violation of the laws
according
that broader

of Variwa,

who has

in his

charge the order of the universe,


'

and punishes the sinner by his fetters of disease, especially


2
In general, to be
the dropsy see, e.g. AV. IV, 16, 6, 7
sure, the lower view prevails in the Atharvan
possession
by demons, and the witchcraft of enemies, are the causes of
'

sickness.

Stanza

The metre
trish/ubh

irregular

Pada

a,

anush/ubh

b and

c,

d^agati.

For

b.

is

4.

rura, see the note

on V,

22, 10 a.

yo anyedyur
abhyeti (see also VII, 116, 2) refers
to a fever which attacks, or becomes highest, every twentyfour hours
cf. perhaps the vela^vara, mentioned by Kerava
c.

Some MSS., according to Weber, read hru<fu, and Whitney,


Index Verborum, s. v., reports also huV/u, hiuVru, and ruVu. Sayaa
Shankar Pandit
reads rudhu/i (rohaka/z purushajarire utpadaka^).
notes
2

p.

still

other variants.

prefer this view

406

according to

fT.,

to anolher suggested by Grohmann,


which the malarial takman in marshy

1.

(i.

c.,

e.

Varuzja, being the god


watery) regions is especially pointed out.
of the sea (water), this variety of takman might thus be regarded as
his son.

This seems rather far-fetched.

[42]

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

74

Such

to Kauj-. 26, 25.

(Grohmann,

the

describes

hour daily,

it is

the

to

387

is

the interpretation of

all

authorities

p. 382), and Wise, p. 232,


(Su^ruta's anyedyushka) as

Zimmer,

Anye^yuka
paroxysm

of fever recurs at the

'If the

follows:

lent

p.

called

Anye^yuka.'

It is therefore

rhythmus quotidianus.

same

equiva-

Sayawa, anye-

dyu/z anyasmin paradine ya// j-ita^vara/^ abhyeti.


yo
ubhayadyiir abhyeti, he who returns for two successive
.

'

i.

days,'

e.

with the implication that the next day (as

should say, the third day)


p. 388.

and Zimmer,

p.

is

free

from fever'.

we

Grohmann,

382, identify this with the rhythmus


a form of the disease in which the

quart anus complicatus,

attacks repeat themselves on two successive days, the third


day being exempt. This would remind us of the ekantarita

mentioned by Kcrava, 1. c. But it seems to fit also the


^aturthaka viparyaya. Wise, 1. c, says, In Chaturthaka
the paroxysms of this fever occur every fourth day. When
'

the

paroxysm continues

called
tions,

for

two days, the fever

is

that

Chaturthaka Bipar^yaya.' None of these construchowever, is certain. Sayaz/a here says, ubhayadyu/^

ubhayasmin dvitiye*hani
plicitly at

VII, 116,

2,

ayati, and,

more ex-

still

yas ka ubhayedyu//

(!)

ubhayor

Mturthika^vara ity
artha//.
This means a kind of fever that omits two days
and returns on the third day, and would thus be identical
divasayo//. atitayor

iti

sesha/i, abhyeti,

with the tr/tiyaka, according to the current construction


But see the Pet. Lex. under ubhayadyu//
(see Pada d).

and ubhayedyu/j.
d. For tr/tiyaka, see the note on V,

I,

34.

22, 13 a.

Commentary to page

99.

belongs to a quite extensive class of Atharvan


the
charms,
object of which is either to generate love in
a person of the opposite sex, or restore alienated affection.

This

hymn

In general, charms of this class are rubricated in the second


1

Cf.

22, 13a.

our not altogether certain interpretation of

vit/Ytfya,

V,

I,

34-

COMMENTARY.

275

book of the Kaiuika (32, 28-36, 40).


This is designated by the commentators as strikarmawi.
women's rites,' and presents the greatest variety of practices connected with the life of women and their relations
see Kauj-ika, Introduction, p. lxv, and cf. the folto men
lowing hymns. Yet this particular hymn is not mentioned
in the book in question, though it is otherwise worked up
part of the fourth
1

three times. Kaiu. 38, 17


76, 8. 9
of these passages, 38, 17, the hymn is
;

In the

79, 10.

employed

in a

first

simple

practice uttered by an intending disputant before entering


upon a debate in the sabha or parishad, the village assembly
:

While reciting AV. I, 34 he approaches the assembly


The commenfrom the north-east, chewing licorice.'
tators do not quite agree as to the special purpose of the
Kerava says that it produces victory in disputapractice.
tion (vivade ^ayakarmaz/ara vldhi/i)
Darila, more mildly,
'

says that it is an expiatory performance to wipe out the


guilt incurred in defeating an opponent (in debate), praty1
Either of these
artha^ayadoshaj-amana/zz pr&yaj-Z'ittam.

manipulations of the

hymn

is

reasonable

if

we

regard
2

kami'ni in stanza 5 as referring to the parishad or sabha


and there is therefore no absolute guarantee that the hymn

had originally anything to do with sexual


ever

II, 30,

In

Kauj

hymn,

Cf.

how-

76, 8. 9 the bridegroom, while reciting this


his little finger an amulet of licorice-wood
to
ties
-

(madugha), fastening

love.

1.

it

with thread coloured red with

lac.

The MSS. have pratyartha^-apa-, but this does not yield good
The correction was suggested by Professor Cowell in a

sense.

kind note.

Seven

Correct accordingly our treatment of the passage in


of the Atharva-veda, Amer. Journ. Phil. VII, 48 r

Hymns

16 of the reprint).
There is, too, a bare possibility that the fifth stanza is of later
origin, especially if we attach any weight to the tradition that the
(p.

first

book of the AV. consisted of hymns of four stanzas each see


The meaning of that tradition
I, 12 (p. 247).
;

the introduction to

seems, however, rather to be that each hymn consisted of at least


four stanzas, or more, since many of them, in fact, consist of more.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

276

and placing it so that the amulet is on the outside of the


In Sutra 10 he leads
finger, the knot within (the hand).
the bride forth, and the amulet is, therefore, obviously
intended to make him attractive to the bride. This involves the construction of the hymn which we have presented in our translation, i.e. the bridegroom, by means of
the amulet, secures the love of the bride \
Once more, in Kauj-. 79, 10, at the consummation of the
marriage, a ceremony, involving this hymn, is enacted by the
married couple. The bridegroom takes hold of the amulet
of licorice (which he has put on previously, Kauj-. 76, 8.
y), puts it into bull's grease, and while reciting the present hymn and AV. XIV, 2, 71. 72, they embrace one

K&yava, more explicitly, states that the amulet is


2
ground up, madughama//i;// pish/va aukshe prakshipya
abhimantrya parasparam varavadhvau samalabhete. The
it seems
purpose of the performance is not quite clear
to be designed to render the affection mutual 3
Cf. AV.
II, 36, 7, and our discussion there.
The hymn has been translated by Weber, Ind. Stud. IV,
2
The Anukrama//i
429 (cf. V, 218); Grill
pp. 52, 78.
another.
first

designates

amulet of

Dr.

groom

it

as madughama/zisuktam,

'

the

hymn

of the

licorice.'

Haas

in the Indische Studien, V, 386,

fasten the amulet

upon

to indicate this proceeding,

the bride's finger.

which

makes
There

the brideis

nothing

contrary to the context of the


hymn. Dr. Haas, to be sure, erroneously refers the pratika iyam
virudh to AV. VII, 56, 2; hence he did not see that the bridegroom
desires to make himself lovable in the sight of the woman
(see I,
is

34, 5)2

For aukshe, see our note on II, 36, 7.


Professor Weber in his translation of this passage, Ind. Stud.
V, 401, takes madughamam to mean 'hymen,' for reasons not
3

I fancy that Keyava's pish/va removes the possiapparent to me.


bility of such a construction, and the madughamawipraya^itta
quoted by the same scholar on p. 404, refers simply to the loss of

the amulet here in question ; this is restored by


amulet from the putudaru (devadaru)-tree.

making another

COMMENTARY.

II,

Stanza

Honey

Cf.

e.g.

RV. X,

A^vins, the bee

took honey

goes (with honey

in

digging

1.

agreeableness from

the symbol of personal

is

times.

earliest

277

in

40,

'From you,

6,

mouth, as a

its

woman

her mouth) to an assignation V


The
is not to be taken too

the plant with honey

as Sayawa does, madhurupea khanitradina, or


madhurewa prakarewa, but rather, with the influence of the
sweetness of honey, prompting or supporting him who digs
literally,

'

after the licorice-root.'

Cf.

AV.

Stanza

The second

half

is

literally at III, 25, 5

VII, 56,

2.

2.

a formula, being repeated

and VI,

9, 2

Pada

almost

d, at VI, 42, 3

43> 3-

Stanza
c, d.

cated

The passage
by

4.

contains an elliptic comparison, as indiWithout the

the brackets in our translation.

'

no good sense Weber, mich


allein drum du lieben magst wie einen honigsiissen zweig
so sei denn ich das liebste dir, gleich einem honigGrill,
siissen zweig.'
But what human being regards a branch
sweet as honey as the most precious possession ?
ellipsis

supplied there

is

'

Stanza

The

5.

used here metaphorically


clinging sugar-cane
sweetness and attractiveness no practice of this character is indicated anywhere.
a.

is

for

c, d.

The passage
II,

The hymn

3.

is

a formula; see

II,

30,

Commentary to page

VI,

8,

1-3.

9.

joined with I, 2 at Kau.y. 25, 6-9, in a


charm against excessive discharges from the body see the
treatment at I, 2. The particular part of Kauj-ika's pracis

tices,

which

is

based on our hymn,

is

contained in Sutra

A different interpretation is suggested by Bergaigne,


des comparaisons vediques (Melanges Renier, p. 89).
1

La

syntaxe

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

278

founded upon the conception that ants are


endowed with the faculty of producing water, and that, too,
healing-water, wherever they appear, and consequently
It

25, 7.

is

whenever they are applied as a remedy. Hence they are


For
here given to the patient to be drunk in water.
fuller

statements of this belief, see the introduction to VI,


Seven Hymns of the Atharva-veda, Amer.

and

100,

Journ. Phil. VII, pp. 482-4.


The hymn has been translated by Weber, Ind. Stud.

XIII, 138

ff.

Ludwig, Der Rigveda,

79 ff. The Anukrama/n designates


nvantaridaivatam.

Stanza

The difficult word here


XIX, 8, 2 (see Bohtlingk's
b.

is

III,
it

507

Grill

pp. 17,
as bhaisha^yayurdha;

1.

avatka.

lexicon

s.

In the Paippalada
v.) occur the two

hypermetric Padas, avatakaw mama bhesha^am avatakaw


Here the metre suggests emendation to
pariva^anam.
avatka, but at the same time shows pretty clearly that the
word is a derivative of avata, spring.' Sayawa is very mis'

in mind the performances of the Sutra, he


avatka with muitgaska/i in Kaiu. 25, 6, and the
mountain mentioned in the stanza with the Mu/^avat, to

Having

leading.

identifies

wit

atra parvataj-abdena mu/T^avan nama parvato viva1


tasmat ada/i viprakr/sh/a;;z yat prasiddham

kshita//

vyadhiparihare/ja rakshakaw mwl^aska/i avadhavati avaruhya bhumau dhavati.


This involves an impossible rendering of avadhavati, and leaves out of sight

avatka;/z

the possibility that this

hymn may have

nothing to do with

the mu^a-reed, being concerned rather with the healing


water, procured by the ants ; see the introduction.
c, d.

lation,

The passage as it stands in the text, and our transcan be sustained only on the supposition that the

added to some other substance, not indicated in


Ludwig, feeling this difficulty, emends subheto
sha^am
subhesha^o, so that you (the patient) may have
a powerful remedy.' A simpler emendation is to change
water

is

the stanza.

'

Cf. the note

on V,

22, 5.

II,

3-

COMMENTARY.

279

that do I make into a remedy for you, so


contain goodly remedy.'
But the next stanza,
as it stands, seems also to point to a mixed remedy; hence
I
have adhered to the text. Sayawa comments against
asasi to asati,

that

it

'

may

sense and

grammar.
Stanza

2.

I have adhered to the unanimous


reading of the MSS.;
the Paippalada offers no help, ad aiiga sfca.ta.m(\) yad bhe-

sha^ani te sahasraz// va gha yani te (cf. also VI, 44, 2). The
sense of the passage, as it stands, seems to be that all

substances which are combined

the remedial

with

the

avatka are, after all, inferior in healing capacity to the


avatka itself. This is much as Saya;/a construes it, tava

sawbandhini sa^atiyani ^atam


yani
bhesha^ani
teshaw bhesha^ana;;/ madhye tvam uttamam utkrzsh/atamam asi. Ludwig and Grill emend te to me dann wird's
doch wohl geschehen, dass von meinen hundert Arzenei'n
du selbst die allerbeste bist ' (Grill). I am not convinced
.

'

that this

is

right.
'

a.

ad anga, then surely ;' kiivid

the latter phrase


Cf.

is

Yaska's Nigh.

a rhetorical question

I, 3,

and Nirukta IV,


Stanza

'

'

yea, quite surely

ariga,

;
'

('

art thou) surely

15.

3.

a. The Asuras, the demons, here either hide away the


remedies by burying them deep in the ground (cf. VI, 109,

3), or they bury them for secure keeping, so that they may
become available on occasion (cf. I, 24, 2). See in general

the note on
b.

I,

24,

1.

aru'/z)sra//am

is

emended
'

sra;/am, from root

cook.'

well

by Ludwig

to aru(/z)-

The

.sra,
DhatupaZ/za, 22, 22,
pake, and Sayaz/a also avails himself
of this root in one explanation of the word, avu/i srayati

has

sra (srayati)

pakvaw bhavati anena and (under st. 5), arusho vra;/asya


pa^anam. That is a remedy which causes the wound to
We seem to have here the very source for
ripen or heal.'
;

'

the root sra of the Dhatupa//za.


For the interchange of
the sibilants, see Bloomfield and Spieker, Proc. Amcr. Or.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

280

Soc, May, 1886 (Journ., vol. xiii, pp. cxvii ff.). Possibly
the word asrava may have had something to do with the

change of -jrawa to -sraa.


d. Sayawa reads a.mamat

for anina^at

Stanza

For

cf. st. 4.

4.

see the introduction

upa^ika/z, 'ants,'

to VI, 100.

Sayawa, valmikanishpadika vamrya/z.


Stanza

The

stanza consists of

6.

12+11 +

11

word rakshasam, obviously a gloss,


fluous.
For Pada c, cf. I, 19, 1.
II, 4.

syllables;
is

the last

metrically super-

Commentary to page

37.

The

plant called ga.ngida. illustrates very perfectly the


absence of any boundary line between disease and demon-

ology

in the

On

Atharvan.

the one hand

it

is

employed

against a variety of diseases, fever (takman), internal sores


(balasa), and other minor manifestations, or symptoms,
designated as ^ambha, vi^ara and vuarika, aVarika, and

prz'sh/yamaya (II, 4, 2 XIX, 34, 10), receiving therefore


the epithet vuvabhesha^a, all-healing,' XIX, 3,5, 5; it is
;

'

moreover the specific against rheumatic troubles, if vishkandha and sawskandha (II, 4, 1 ff. XIX, 34, 1. 5 35, 1)
shall turn out ultimately to have this meaning (see the note
on st. 1 c). On the other hand it obviates all the dangers
arising from hostile demons and sorceries, as is expressly
;

stated in

all

the three

hymns devoted

to

its

praise (II, 4

XIX, 34 and 35). The plant is not mentioned outside of


the Atharvan which, in lieu of description, indulges in the

The gods themselves


customary vague rhodomontades.
have thrice produced the ^ahgi^a, Indra has put strength
into it, and (XIX, 34,
6) the seers of yore are said to have
known

it

by

the

name

but for the fact that

it

of Ahgiras a very pretty conceit,


harbours nothing more than a stolid

From the Kau^ika and its


pun (^ahgi^as and ahgiras).
commentaries we learn at least one thing that it is a tree.
In the Sutra,

8,

15,

it

occurs in a

list

of 'holy' (santSJi)

COMMENTARY.

4-

II,

28

expressly stated by Kcrava, atha j-antavr/ksha


Darila at 8, 15
42, 23 describes it as a white
tree growing in the Dekkhan, ar^una/^ aala iti dakshi/m-

trees, as

is

u^yante.

tya.fi

Kcsava

at

15,

8,

and Saya/*a

at II, 4,

say that

it

familiar in Benares, vara;/asya? prasiddha/2.


Saya;za, in
the introduction to our hymn, as also to AV. XIX, 34, has
is

r
<

angirt'av77ksha,

places the

siddha//, all

known
The

and

in the

commentary

parts of India.
following is the literature on the ^arigi<fa

in

II,

is

according

text literally
34,

3)

Weber,

employed, Kau.y. 42,

to

demons (puaa/~atana)

Darila,
;

destined

is

according to

ib.

Groh-

XIII, 141

23, in a practice

to

Kcrava

drive

away

state the

cf.
purushahave (cod. purusho have
and
akaryakaraena vighna^amanakarma
it

is,

kr/tyadusha//arthe

further,

he

many

The hymn
which,

34,

of the tree in the north, uttarade^e praof which would seem to show that the tree is

mann, Indische Studien, IX, 417 ff.


Zimmer, Altindisches Leben, p. 65.

XIX,

XIX,

at

home

na^amanarakshakarawa/^

(cod.

apyayati vighviskandhe (!) y3.h (the

krz'tva.-)

vighna//

latter passage is not printed in my extracts from that


The practice consists in tying on
authority in the edition).
diras an amulet the substance mentioned in the hymn
:

Darila says "arigidamawim, and K&yava more explicitly states that an amulet
derived from the ^ahgirf'a be tied on with a thread of hemp.

ghayutvaye*ti mantrokta;;/ badhnati.

g3hg\d3vc\3n\m jaasutrea badhva sa//7patya*bhimantrya


badhnati. The hemp refers to stanza 5, and it seems to me
quite likely that Ke^ava is right in thus describing the
association
external.

hemp with the ^angiWa as altogether


The hymn has been translated by Weber,
of the

Indische Studien, XIII,

p.

140

ff.

Stanza

This hymn, as
stanza,

others, begins with an irregular

two trish/ubh and two anush/ubh Padas

12; VL iii,&c.
for dakshamawa//.
reads
rakshamawa/;
Saya;/a

VII, 103;
b.

many

1.

AV. IV,

cf.

RV.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

282

The meaning

c.

of vishkandha,

regret to say,

is

not

Both ancients and moderns have etymologised upon


the word, and in all instances have arrived at the conclusion
But the results,
that the word refers to some disease.
of
consistent
in
the one point
disease, betray their
though
weakness in differing as to its special nature. The schoclear.

liast at Tait. S.

VII,

u,

3,

the only

word outside of the Atharvan

of the

known

occurrence

also Gop.
skandhadyavayava
yasya tad vishkandham (sc. jariram), the body whose
members, shoulders, and so forth, are deformed is vish-

Br.

5, 25)

I,

it

explains

by

literature

(cf.

virupa(//)

'

kandha.'

Sayawa, at

AV.

I,

16,

3 (and similarly here)

gatipratibandhaka;/z raksha//pi.ya/t'adikrzta;/z vighna'


^"atam, a disease which hinders from walking, produced by
says,

&c, instigated by (some hostile) disturbance.'


The same fatuous authority, however, at XIX,
35, 5 says, vishkandhaw vi.rlish/askandham eva/zmamanaw
Rakshas,

Pisafcas,

vatavixeshawz maharogam, 'vishkandha, a serious disease of


that name, caused by wind (in the body), producing dislocation of the shoulders.'

Professor

Weber

modern

of the

interpretation of the word,


shoulders apart, rheumatism (see Indische
'

is
'

the author

drawing the
Studien, IV,

410; XIII, 141; XVII, 215, and cf. the Pet. Lex. Zimmer,
2
1. c,
I have been struck by the fact
390 Grill p. 75).
that both Darila and Kcrava in their comments upon Kau.y.
42, 23
43, 1. 2, the Sutras which rubricate AV. II, 4 and
;

the principal sources of our knowledge of the vishall mention of disease of any kind.
To begin
with, these passages of the Sutra are not part of the bhaiIII, 9,

kandha, omit

sha^yani (Kauj. 25, 1-32, 27). Further, Darila speaks only


of pua^anai-anam and pij-a^a^atanam, Kesava of vigh-

na^amanam and vishkandhavighnaj-amano

(mani/i).

Ob-

servation has taught me that the commentators' knowledge


of the practices is superior to their knowledge of the meanings of words
its

all

India

is

in this

perverse etymological habits

recommend

regard an easy prey to


and I should think it

a continuous reading of Yaska's Nirukta to any

II,

more conservative

4-

COMMENTARY.

28^

for the present to hold that vishkandha,

as well as the opportunistic sa;skandha at AV.


are designations of hostile demoniac forces.

XIX, 34, 5,
One may

easily be convinced, by examining, with the aid of Whitney's Index Verborum, all the passages in which the word
occurs, that the latter meaning suits as well as the former.

Of

course the boundary-line between disease and


possession
demons is an evanescent one in all Atharvan writings.

by
The formation

vishkandha, moreover, suggests vyawsa


(RV. I, 32, 5, &c.) and vigriva (RV. VIII, 4, 24), both of
them designations of demons (cf. Weber, Ind. Stud. IV,
Thus it has seemed best to leave the word untrans410).
lated for the present.

Stanza
a.

tion

2.

'

The translaconvulsions, cramps, or colic'


certain.
Ind.
Stud.
Weber,
reasonably
XIII, 142,

-ambha,
is

describes the trouble as an infantile disease, perhaps teething; cf. also Zimmer, 1. c, 392, and Henry, Le livre VII de

l'Atharva-veda,

The etymology

p. 53.

of the word, and the

epithet sawhanu, 'shutting the jaws,' at AV. VIII, 1, 16,


seem to lend themselves at first sight to such an interpretation,

but

too

narrow.

yad va

^ambha

after all

is

it

hi/?zsakat

krz'tyade//,

^ambhat

Sayazza,
iti

dantaviVeshasya
akhya, rakshasadantavii-eshakrz'tat khadanat.
See, however, his

Kaui-.

very different interpretation at VIII,

32,

35,

occurs

15

1,

16.

At

the word

^ambhagrz'hita.
raksha^, tena grihita/i
according to Kau-rika and Kerava, the patient is an infant
which is put to the mother's breast and fed with rice
and fennel steeped in milk \ All this would still pass
;

Darila at 32,

defines

it

as^ambho

readily as a cure of diseases connected with teething.

Kaui

in

35,

one who wishes


chaff.

epigoni

But

12-15 we have the following performance:


to

And Yaska

know how much


is

the high

grain

priest

may

be found

among the

how much worse

are the

Kau.s\ ^ambhagr/hitaya (Kes.


balakaya)
priyahguta</ulan abhyavadugdhan payayati.

stanaw praya-Wati,

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

284
.

garbhadz-z'zzzhazzani,

^ambhagrzhitaya

gy&m

trir

ud-

grathya badhnati.

losh/an anvz'z>az;z pra.yayati. .syamasikatabhi/z .yayanazzz parikirati.


The scene here is child-birth,
the passage is part of the strikarmazzi, ' women's rites (32,
'

28-36, 40), and the ^"ambha has seized the baby or the
foetus, either at the moment of birth, or prematurely.

Hence the

womb

ing the

'

of the ceremony, performances for steadyor foetus.'


According to Darila, the woman

title

herself receives the treatment, being tied about with a threefold bowstring (^ambhena grz'hito garbho yasya striya/z
tasya gy&m triguzzaz/z kz-ztva badhnati), fed with lumps of

earth (^ambhagz'zhitazzz

[!]

praxayati),

refer to

some

and having her bed

Here ^ambha seems

strewed about with black sand.

irregular behaviour of the foetus

cf.

to

Wise,

Hindu System of Medicine,

pp. 423 (middle), and 421


and
the
introduction
to VI, 17.
The word has
(bottom),
at any rate no special connection with the teeth, as may be
seen, too, from Tait. S. IV, 5, 11, 2.
Our translation of vuara by
tearing pain
(Say.
'

'

of the etymologising sort. The Pet.


cautiously, regards it as the name of a demon.

j-ariravLyara/zat)

Lex v more
Cf.

is

vuarika at XIX, 34,

which Sayazza glosses by

10,

vlyeshezza hizzzsakam.

Stanza

5.

am

quite agreed with Ke^ava and Sayazza (mazzibandhanasutraprakz'z'tibhuta/z) in not regarding the juxtaposition
I

of the

hemp

with the gahgida. as due to some biological


Ind. Stud.
(cf. Weber,

relationship, or therapeutic virtue

XIII, 142). The hemp represents the thread with which


the amulet of ^"arigitfa was tied on.
thread, or rope of

hemp

is

mentioned also at Kauj

introduction to the

25, 28;

72, 15.

See the

The hemp,

hymn.

from the sap of the furrow

of course, comes
the
tree, from the
^-angirta,

forest.

Stanza

6.

The same stanza with variants occurs


The last Pada is a formula, occurring in
6; XII,

2,

13;

XIV,

2, 67.

at

AV. XIX, 34, 4.

addition at IV, 10,

II,

II,

COMMENTARY.

7-

285

Commentary to page

7.

91.

Sayawa (and similarly Kej-ava) define the purpose of this


hymn as a charm to obviate curses, evil eye, and danger
from the attack of demons laukikavaidikakro^ayor brah:

krura/akshu/zpurushadr/sh/inipate
pua^ayaAccording to Kaiu. 26, 35 the procedure
consists in investing the person threatened with (an amulet

ma/za^ape

kshadibhaye.

The
of) the substance mentioned in the mantra.
commentators define this as yavama/zi, an amulet of barley V
The word yava is not mentioned in the hymn, the nearest
made

'

approach to it is .japatha-yopani, wiping out curses.' As


o and ava have almost identical phonetic values in the Veda
'

facts, Amer. Journ. Phil. V, pp. 25 ff.),


that yava has been read by the ritualists
out of the syllable yo- of yopani cf. too, the synonym

our statement of the

(cf.

we must suppose

and the well-known formula


yavo*si yavaya*smad dvesha/z, barley art thou, ward off
.Vat. Br. Ill, 6, 1, 11
hatred from us' (Tait. S. I, 3, 1, 1
Hira;zyak. .Sr. IV, 2, 42, in addition to the places mentioned
in Kaiuikasutra, index C).
Upon this basis the word and

i-apatha-yavani at IV, 17,

2,

'

The pun

the article yava are suggested.

room

to leave no

for

doubt

is

so familiar as

the mind of the

in

Hindu

Cf. the introacquainted with this style of literature.


duction to VI, 91 and the note to IX, 2, 13.
The hymn has been translated by Weber, Ind. Stud.
;

XIII, 148
81

Ludwig, Der Rigveda,

Cf. also ^Santikalpa 19

At Apast.
corrupt form

Sr. VI.
:

Grill

2
,

pp. 24,

20, 2 the

1.

stanza occurs in the following

atharvyush/a deva^utS.

vWu

X'/zapatha^am-

apo malam iva prawi^ann asmatsu j-apathan adhi.

bhani/z

Cf. II,

25,4-5-

508

Stanza

III,

The Anukrama/zi, bhaisha^yayurvanaspatidaivat-

ff.

yam.

ff.

Sayawa, however, commenting on vhudh in st. i, durva yavo va.


Cited erroneously by Saya/ia as Nakshatrakalpa.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

286

Stanza
b.

We may note

Grill's

2.

ingenious emendation of ^amya//


^ami. But no such form

to ^amya/z, an adjective from

AV.

Cf.

occurs.

10,

II,

RV. IV,

4,

5.

Sayazza,

g-amya/i ^ami/z sahottpanna bhagini.

Stanza

number of the

3.

attributes stated in this

ceding stanzas are repeated at VI, 43, 1. 1


in connection with the holy darbha-grass.

and the pre-

XIX, 32, 1.
The terms

3. 7

are

too general and fabulous to permit definite conclusions as


to the plant which the poet here has in mind.

Stanza

4.

The MSS.

are divided between the readings pari


our
I have followed
edition) and pari mam.
(so
in
and
Shankar
Pandit
latter version.
the
Sayazza
adopting
e. d. The metre is irregular (Anukr. \\xkd u parish /adbrza.

*ma'm

hati)

which

is

may

a catalectic Pada

d has ten syllables, one of

be suppressed by reading tarshur.


Stanza

b.

For the sentiment

cf.

5.

Tait. Ar. II, 6,

1.

Sayazza, ya/z

tena suhr/dayena mitrezza saha na/z


iti i-esha/z, we
sukhazzz
bhavatu
asmakam,
together with our
I am not convinced that this is
friend shall be happy.'
purusha/z suhart

'

correct.
c.

in

Are we

to read, ya/z suhart tena

Mkshurmantra,

XIX,

1.

45,

'

vayam saha

he who bewitches with

Sayazza separates

his eye,' also

akshur from mantrasya,

explaining the latter by guptazzz bhashamazzasya plrunasya,


But cf. the thouthe calumniator who speaks secretly.'
'

'

sand-eyed curse' at VI, 3J,


39, 11

and

1;
'

ghorazzz z^akshus,

amitraz^akshus at Kaur.

evil eye.' at

IV,

9,

XIX,

35, 3II,

The word

8.

Commentary to page

kshetriya

quite unanimously as

is
'

13.

interpreted by the Atharvavedins


Three hymns,
inherited disease.'

II,

8.

COMMENTARY.

28/

and 10;

N,

27,

7-8

III, 7 (cf. also IV, 18, 7; V, 30, 4), are


designed to drive it out, and the Kaimka rubricates all of
them among the medical charms (bhaisha^yani). 26, 41-27, 4:
;

disease,'

Darila at 26, 43 defines it as 'family


27, 29-31.
kaulo vyadhi/^; Kej-ava at 27,4 as, pitr/paryagata//
1

kshetriyaroga/^ kush///akshayaroga/2 graha/ndosha/^ sarvaThe scholiast


.yariraspho/akara/;
similarly Say. at II, 8, 1.
;

at Tait. Br. II, 5, 6, 3 (p. 628) has kshetra; garbhasthanaw


tatrotpannatvat, i.e. 'disease which has arisen while in the

womb'

The
(rather differently at II, 5, 6, 1, pp. 626-7).
practices connected with these hymns are obscure in detail,
and their application is remote.
Kaui

26,

41-27, 4 deals with our hymn, to wit

'While reciting

AV.

41.

(the practitioner) washes the


outside
the
patient
42. While reciting AV.
(of
house).
2
washes
him
outside of the house) at dawn.
II, 8,
(he
43. While reciting AV. II. 8, 3 he pulverises the plants
mentioned in the stanza (see the translation), as also natural
mud, and mud from an ant-hill, sews this up into the skin
II, 8, 1

and fastens it (as an


While
27,
patient).
reciting II, 8, 4 he
a
with
its
cattle
of
over
the head of the
places
plough
span
2
and
While
water
over
it.
2.
patient
pours
reciting AV.
of a living animal

(freshly slain),

amulet upon the

1.

II, 8, 5 he pours the dregs of ghee into (a vessel full of)


water (placed) within an empty house. 3. He pours more
(dregs of ghee) into an old ditch into which grass from the

thatch of the house has been placed. 4. Placing the patient


he gives him of the water to drink, and rinses

into this ditch

it.'
The symbolism of these practices is not clear,
but they seem at any rate to be built up on the derivation
of the word kshetriya from kshetra in the sense of 'field,'

him with

rather than in the sense of womb.'


'

See especially the

last

For ^ivakoshawi see Kaiuika, Introduction, p. 1. Other substances derived from living animals occur at Katy. Sr. IX, 2, 16
Par. Grch. Ill, 7, 2.
;

That

is,

he puts the patient under the plough with

its

span,

vrz'shabhayuktasya halasya adhastad vyadhitam avasthapya (Sayawa


in the introduction to the
hymn).

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

2 88

stages of the performance, Sutra 27, 1 (the plough and the


span of cattle), and Sutras 27, 3. 4, which aim to wash off

the illness into the very ground, whence (according to this


conception) it has been derived. And the hymn itself is
redolent of
'

5)

(st.

fields,

&c, and calls upon


Thus Professor Weber was
look upon this hymn as a charm to

plants, ploughing,

the lord of the

led repeatedly to

field

counteract injuries to fields-

XIII, 149
is
'

Nakshatra

see Ind. Stud. V, 145 note

And

II, 292.

yet,

womb

name
field,

this

field,'

and

think,

mere play upon the two meanings of kshetra,

all

'

'

the poet, thinking that the disease derives its


from the field, conjures with the properties of the
or, perhaps, adapts secondarily stanzas constructed
;

originally for practices in the field.


The hymn has been translated

XIII, 149

ff.

Anukramawi

by Weber, Ind. Stud.


and Ludvvig, Der Rigveda, III, 513. The

describes

as vanaspatya/// yakshmana.yana-

it

daivatyam.

Stanza

The

three

last

Padas are

1.

repeated at III,

7,

4;

the

half in VI, 121, 3.


The point in all these cases
the supposed etymology of the constellation vi^r/tau

first
is

mulabarha/n, and mula) from vi krit, 'loosen;' this


enables the word to figure wherever there is question of
the fetters of disease.
Cf. in general, Weber, Nakshatra
(later

'

'

For an
292, 310, 374, 389; Zimmer, pp. 356, 392.
of
see
construction
the
of
the
function
vikn'tau,
opposite
II,

the note on VI,


1

no,

2.

on this expression below.


and commentaries Ind. Stud. V, 145
note; XIII, 159 note; XVII, 208 note; Zimmer, 391 ff.
3
Note especially the passage from Ka//z. S. cited by Weber,
2

See, however, the note


Cf. also Pacini

V,

2,

92,

Ind. Stud. XIII, 150 note.


The expression svakr/ta iriwe does not
that
a
field
is
in
the
view
of a performer.
prove
spot where there

is

a natural

rift

in the

ground

is

frequently, in witchcraft,

made

the

theatre of the performance, without any such special end in view.


Cf. the passages in the Pet. Lex., and the paribhasha to the abhiara performances, Kaiu. 49, 6.

II,

COMMENTARY.

8.

Stanza

289

2.

have translated apa u/7/atu transitively cf. Ill, 7, 7


RV. I, 48, 8, &c. Weber and Ludwig, contrary to ordinary
hinschwinden moge jetzt die
usage, take it intransitively
a, b.

'

and weg geh mit ihrem liechte diese nacht.' Sayawa,


agreement with our version, the night at the time of
'

nacht,'
in

'

dawn

(usha//kalina ratri) shall chase

Pada b

Pandit's

same

read, for the

MSS., apoMatu
Weber,

abhikr/tvari/z.

reason, with one of Shankar

for
'

'

In

away (vivasayatu).'

apo^antu, making

die

it

govern

(mogen

zauberspinnerinnen

Ludwig, weg gehn sollen die bezauSayawa, retaining the plural, forces, it seems to
me, the meaning of abhikr/tvari// in translating it by abhita/z
rogaj-antiw kurvaa/, working a cessation of disease all
about.'
And recognising the futility of the first, he also,
alternatively, takes apo^antu as an intransitive,
puaCf. the note on III, 7, 7.
kya/i apaga//antu
schwinden) hin

'

bernden.'

'

Stanza

3.

According to our translation the words babhror


K&rava (and Saya/za who
repeats Kej-ava's substance) make the two words represent an
a, b.

ar^unakaw^/asya qualify yavasya

independent plant ar^unakash/^a;;/ yavabusaw tilapingikSun


ka. ekatra tri//i baddhva.
And Darila also recognises three
:

which he describes as babhruvarasya

plants, the first of

for ka^e/avLyesham).
Acr^\inasya tasya
(!
to
is
a
these
substance
branch
constructions
the
first
cording

ka.7ida.sesha.rn

from the tree (Saya;za

in

commenting on the word

in

our

stanza, ar^nakhyavrzkshavi.yeshakash/7/asya) ar^una (ter-

But the construction renders this extremely


and we prefer to render the text philologically.
b. The word te, thy,' would seem at first sight to refer
to a field, and, as stated in the introduction, this would
show that the poet here looks upon kshetriya as a derivative
minalia arjuna).
unlikely,

'

'

of kshetra, field,' and that he therefore introduces the paraphernalia of the field in his incantation. But this cannot

stand against the ordinary value of the word, nor

O]

is

it

HYMNS OF THE ATI1ARVA-VEDA.

29O

impossible to imagine the introduction of these substances


simply on the ground of the supposed (etymological) derivation of the name of the disease.
At any rate we have

Kaujika on our

side.

Stanza
sanisrasaksha

a.

V,

is air.

Aey.

5.

sanisrasa occurs once at

4 as a designation of the intercalary

6,

month

(cf.

AV.
AV.

Our
Weber, Nakshatra II, p. 336 note).
translation is conjectural and etymological
the only support I find is in srastaksha (Siuruta 1, 115, 7), 'with sunken
eyes.'
Saya;za leans with his full weight on the Kau.rika's
XIII,

3,

employment
above), in

of the stanza (27, 2

which an

'

empty house

see the translation of

'

figures,

and he

it

identifies

the word with j-unyagrzha/^ (sanisrasyamanani atuayena


visra/zzsamanani vi.riryama;zani aksham gavakshadidvara/zi
yeshazzz te sanisrasaksha//, sunyagriha. ity artha/z), i. e. in
the decayed doors of the empty house.'
Credat
brief,
'

Judaeus

Does with sunken eyes


'

the disease

The

b.

'

refer to the

demon

of

difficulty

sa//zde.syebhya/z

is

much

increased

by the

which Sayazza, who reads

again identifies with the ^aratkhata,

'

unintelligible

sazzzde.yebhya/z,

the old ditch,' in the

3. 4: sam diiyante tya^yante tadgatamrz'dadanene


*ti saz/zdcra/z ^aradgarta/z
The word seems to refer to
some kind of evil (papa) at AV. X, 1, 11. 12 in IV, 16, 8

Sutra. 27,

contrasted with vidcsya, foreign ') it refers to


the fetter of Varu;za,' i. e. disease. Weber, den auftrag'
ausfiihrenden verneigung sei
Ludwig, anbetung den zu

(where

it

'

is

'

'

'

'

beauftragenden (sich
highly problematic

II,

The

9.

The entire stanza is


fiigenden).'
its relation to the Sutra very obscure.

Commentary to page

disease which the

34.

hymn
designed to exorcise is,
according to Darila, possession by the kind of demons
is

"Pisafca..
Ke^ava (followed by Sayawa) describes it
due to brahmagraha, a word hitherto not quoted from
any text, but reported by the lexicons as equal to brah-

called

as

II,

COMMENTARY.

9-

29 1

The practices connected with the


KaiLf. 27, 5. 6 are as follows: 5. 'While reciting
marakshasa.

hymn at
AV. II, 9

a talisman consisting of splinters (from ten kinds of wood is


6. Ten friends (of the
fastened upon the patient).
patient)
while muttering the hymn rub him down.'
The commentators

Kau^.

(cf.

mean

'

13, 5

understand the word jakala

26, 40)

made

of ten kinds of holy wood,' and


these are derived from the list of holy trees catalogued at

to

a talisman

from the (holy) kampilathe


introduction
to II, 10), used
(see

Cf. also the splinters

Ka.us. 8, 15.

Kauj-. 27, 7

wood,

against kshetriya (hereditary disease). For similar Germanic


uses of nine kinds of wood to allay disease, see Wuttke, Der

Deutsche Volksaberglaube der Gegenwart,


121, 538
Mannhardt, Baumkultus der Germanen, p. 18.
The hymn has been translated by Weber, Ind. Stud.

XIII, 153 ff. Ludwig, Der Rigveda, III, 506 Grill pp. 8,
82 ff. cf. also the author in Amer. Journ. Phil. VII. 478,
;

and Bergaigne

hymn
Ath.

figures

et

in

Parij-. 32, 7

describes

it

Henry, Manuel Vedique,

p.

The

137.

the takmana^anagawa of the Gawamala,


the Anukramawi
(see Kauj\ 26, 1 note)
;

The

as vanaspatya;// yakshmana.ranadaivatam.

Paippalada presents the hymn, the stanzas arranged


follows:

1, 5, 4, 2, 3.

Stanza

1.

The metre is irregular, pahkti (Anukr., viraif


The Paippalada has the first half as
paiikti).
da.ravrzksha

mu&mam

ahi;;/sro

Stanza
a.

as

prastarafollows
:

grahyaj

kz..

3.

For adhitir the Paippalada reads adhitam.

Sayawa,

'

the Vedas, which he has read formerly, or their meaning,


which is to be remembered, he has recalled
Cf. A7/and.
'

Ludwig emends adhiter, and translates from


insensibleness he has come away,' but the translation conflicts with the
meaning of adhi ga c(. RV. II, 4, 8.
e, d. The Sutra embodies the indefinite large numbers
Up. VI,

'

7.

100 and 1000 in the amulet often kinds of wood, and the

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

292
.

ten friends (Brahmans according to the scholia)


the patient.

Stanza

The word Mtim


The
problematic.

attend

4.

occurs only in this stanza, and


Pet.

Lex. and Weber,

'

'

Ludwig,

who

pfliickung

covering.'

is

very

sammeln

We

'

Sayawa,

'

'

are con-

arrange, build
necting the word with
up,' having in mind the peculiar amulet or remedy dasa.The sense then
vrz'ksha, consisting of ten woods,' in st. i.
inoti in

the sense of

'

'

would be that the gods have found out the magic arrangement of the woods, while the Brahmans contribute the
practical knowledge of the woods which are endowed with
the healing property.

Cf. Grill's similar exposition.

Stanza
I

RV.

5.

have followed Saya;/a who, relying alternatively upon


II, 33, 4,

and

Tait. S. IV, 5,

i, 2,

makes

'

uvara/z,

lord,'

the subject of the sentence, uvara eva he rugwa tubhyam


But the text
idani7//tanabhishagrupe;?a bhesha^ani karotu.
of

Pada d

is

awkward, and rendered somewhat doubtful by

the Paippalada, whose version of


bhesha-a;/z akara bhisha^ati ka.

c,

is,

Upon

sa eva

tubhyaw

the basis of this

reading Grill suggests for Pada d, krz'//avad bhisha^ati

ka..

Ludwig suggests sufci, Vedic accus. plur. neut. in agreement


with bhesha^ani Weber, bhisha^a^ for bhisha^a. Sayawa
I have translated the
thinks also of sukina for si\k'\h.
;

unanimous text of the vS'aunakiya-school.

II,

io.

Commentary to page

14.

The

practice associated with this hymn at Kauj. 27, 7. 8


colourless: 7. 'While reciting AV. II, 10 (the practitioner) fastens upon the limbs (of the patient who has
is

been placed) upon a cross-road * splinters of kampila-wood


(crinum amaryllacee), and washes him off with (water
1

The favourite place to divest oneself of


note in the introduction to VI, in.

evil

influences

see the

COMMENTARY.

IO.

IT,

293

dipped out) by means of a bunch of grass. 8. (Or) he


Cf. the practices under
sprinkles (him in the same way).'

II, 8.
closely parallel mantra-passage occurs at Tait.
Br. II, 5, 6, 1-3
this the commentator on the
authority of
;

(see p. 628, bottom) connects with the cereat the birth of a child (^-atakarma).
According to

Baudhayana

monies
Baudh. Grzh.
stanzas, and

II,

and

7,

the child

this prescription

bathed with these

is

borne out by Hir. Grih.

is

II, 3, 10 ff, where the same stanzas are quoted.


They
occur also in Apast. Mantrabr. II, 12, 6 (cf. Apast. Grih.
VI, 15, 4). This usage does not really conflict with the

Atharvanic employment of the hymn, since

it

aims to

the child from diseases and troubles derived from the


of the mother.
original sin.
triya in this

The conception borders

of

hymns

26,

womb

closely on that of

That the Atharvavedins regarded the ksheas a disease

hymn

may

be gathered from the

employment of the hymn among the bhaisha^yani


Kaiuika

free

the

in

'

figures also in the takmana.yanaga//a, the list


destructive of fever,' in the Gawamala see Kau.v.
it

note.

The hymn has been


XIII, 156

ff.,

translated by Weber, Ind. Stud.


and Ludwig, Der Rigveda, III, 513.

Stanza
a. ^amuawsa is equivalent
the word recurs at AV. IX,

(where

it

is

glossed

1.

togamyak
4, 15,

and

sapatha/i in II,
Tait. Br. II, 5,

by alasyaprakhyapakat).

7, 2;

6, 3

Sayaa.

bandhavo ^amaya/;, apraptabhilashitana;// teshaw jawsanat


akrcra^anitat papat.

Stanza

The

3.

the following two stanzas is


Pada 3 b is in catenary conthe
refrain
interrupted by
The other version of the hymn
struction with Pada 4 a.
sense of this and

(Tait. Br.)

does not exhibit the

refrain,

and the connection

of the passages appears undisturbed.


a.

Saya;/a reads vayodha/^ for vayo dha/, glossing

vayasaw pakshia#2 dhata dharayita.

it

by

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

294

Stanza

The

8.

the well-known

stanza alludes to

legend which

makes the demon Svarbhanu smite with darkness (eclipse)


the sun, who is then freed by Indra and Atri
see RV.
;

V, 40, 5-9
V, 3, 2, 2
Sankh. Br.
;

Tait. S. II,

1, 2,

?afik. Br. IV, 5,

XXIV,

3. 4.

1
1

The

XII, 13 Sat. Br.


XIV, 11,14; XXIII, 16, 2
moralising cause of the sun's
;

Kat/i. S.

mishap, his enas (sin), is not expressed distinctly anywhere,


nor is it to be taken au grand serieux. By comparison it
is

treated as a disease, and, like disease or misfortune in

general, ascribed

to

some moral delinquency,

expiation (praya^itti)

II,

12.

cf.

requiring

st. 1.

Commentary to page

89.

The essays on the interpretation of this hymn form


an interesting chapter in the history of Vedic study, and
we have devoted to the subject an article in the second
series of our Contributions, Amer. Journ. Phil. XI, 330 ff.,
entitled

the so-called fire-ordeal hymn, AV. II, J2.'


was first interpreted in the sense of a fire-ordeal

'On

The hymn

by Emil Schlagintweit,
Bavarian

Academy

in

in

an address before the Royal


Die Gottesurtheile
'

1866, entitled

der Indier;' this interpretation was adhered to by Weber,


Ind. Stud. XIII, 164 ff.; Ludwig, Der Rigveda, 111,445;
Zimmer, p. 183 ft.; c ^- a ^ so Kaegi, 'Alter und Herkunft
des germanischen Gottesurtheils,' Festschrift zur Begrussung der XXXIX. Versammlung deutscher Philologen und

Schulmanner in Zurich (1887), p. 51 \ The interpretation


which is presented here is founded upon our above-mentioned article, where Kau^ika's significant employment of
the hymn was first brought forward
in essential agree;

See also Stenzler, 'Die Indischen Gottesurtheile,' Zeitschrift der


Deutschen Morgenlandischen Gesellschaft, IX, 661-82.

merit with

PP- 47, 85

it

is

COMMENTARY.

12.

II,

295

the translation and exposition in Grill-,

ff.

The hymn is employed in the sixth book of the Kaorika


which professes to deal with abhiara, 'witchcraft.' At
47, 12

it is
designated as the bharadva^apravraska, 'the
or
cleaver of Bharadva^a (the reputed author cf.
hewer,
'

'

With the

cleaver of Bharadva^a one cuts a staff


for practices
staff so procured
pertaining to witchcraft.'
II, 12, 2)

then employed variously

is

in

Kaus. 47,

14. 16. 18; 48, 22.


direct ritual application of the hymn is indicated in
Kauy. 47, 25-29, to wit
While reciting the hymn
25.

The

'

II, 12, one cuts the foot-print of an enemy, as he runs in


2
a southerly 1 direction with a leaf from a
para^u-tree
26. He cuts three
(lines) along (the length of the footprint of the running enemy), and three (lines) across (the
.

28. He ties dust


same).
27. akshwaya sawsthapya
derived from the cut foot-print into a leaf of the
palaja-tree
(butea frondosa), and throws it into a frying-pan.
29. If
3

the dust crackles (in the pan) then


(the
overthrown.'

The Sutra then proceeds

enemy) has been


to prescribe

still

more elaborate and potent charms for the purpose of downing the enemy. Of any connection with the fire-ordeal the
tradition makes no mention.
There are points of contact
between our hymn and RV. VI, 52 VII, 104. The Anu;

krama/n describes the

hymn

as nanadevatyam,

composed

by Bharadva^a.
Stanza

1.

d. Schlagintweit,
may these be burned here, if I am
burned.'
So also Weber, Ludwig, and Zimmer. Grill
Cf.
correctly, die sollen gliihen jetzt, wenn ich ergliihe.'
'

'

is the
region of Yama and the departed, i.e. of death.
with
the
blade of an axe.
At any rate symbolically. The
Or,

South

commentators

differ

as

to

the

meaning of

para.yupala.rena

see

Kaurika, Introd. p. li, bottom.


Sayawa, as usual, follows Kcrava.
See also the note on Kauj. 30, 14 in the introduction to VI, 25.
3
The text of this Sutra is not altogether secure, its meaning and
the scholia are obscure.

HYMNS OF THE ATHARVA-VEDA.

296

RV. X, 34, 10; 95, 17; AV. XIX, 56, 5. Sayaa, mayi
abhi/arake tapyamane dikshaniyamena upavasadina kli^yamane

sawtapta bhavantu.

sati tapyanta;//

That

is,

heaven

and earth

shall participate in the consecration (diksha) of


the performer for the sorcery-practices against his enemy.

The

appeal to heaven and earth in Pada

a,

and the mis-

interpreted fourth Pada, are really the sole cause of the


An appeal to heaven and
hypothesis of a fire-ordeal.
earth is in occidental minds associated inseparably with

asseverations of innocence.

India

is

similar construction of

Stanza
b.

48, 6

for

2.

For Bharadva^a, see IV, 29, 5; XVIII,


and Ludvvig, Der Rigveda, pp. 128

3,

16;

XIX,

fjf.

'

der diesen (unsern) geist beschadigt


Weber, 'wer diesen meinen sinn
bezweifelt).'

d. Schlagintweit,
(i.e.

it

apparently unwarranted.

schwur

meinen schwur antastet, mein wort bezweiLudwig, der diesen meinen sinn anklagt (verlaumAll these renderings are founded upon the theory

beschadigt,

i.

e.

'

felt.'

det).'

of the fire-ordeal.

mana/i manasa?

Sayawa, piirvaw sanmargapravrz'tta//z


There is no lack of evidence

hinasti.

that religious performances were at times the object of


cf. stanza 6
RV. VI, 56,
enmity and the butt of abuse
;

and Ludvvig, Der Rigveda, IV, 219


Stanza
a.

The

form

in

that

we

first

Pada

is

ff.

3.

defective, but occurs in the

same

may be corrected by reading


somapavan, somapayin, somapa tvam, or the like. But
Atharvan metres are so generally capable of improvement,
the Paippalada.

It

are in danger of singing our own, rather than


to the task of

Atharvan hymns, when we apply ourselves


improving them.
Stanza

4.

Professor Weber, I.e., pp. 167-8, has assembled some


interesting statements in reference to the connection of the
a.

COMMENTARY.

12.

IT,

297

number 80 with the fire-ritual. Sayawa attaches a certain


significance to the number three, which he connects with
the trtkas of the Sama-sa/hitas.
The number is solemn
and formulary.

A clear instance

c.

of a Vedic parenthesis

Otto von

Festgruss an

purtam, see Windisch,

AV.

X;

Rohtlingk, pp.

ib.,

pp. 115

firebrand

Schlagintweit supplies

and

cf.

ff.

Cf. also

Aufrecht,

For

14,

'

in

the last Pada,

nehme

'

ich jenen (feuerbrand) an mich mit


Weber, in still more direct adherence

translates,

gottlicher inbrunst.'
to the hypothesis of a fire-ordeal, supplies with

'gluhendes

amiim

and

translates, 'mit gottlicher gluth nehme


mich.'
Ludvvig, 'jenen (den verlaumder)

beil,'

diesen an

ich

ish/a-

RV. X,

Ill, 12, 8.
'

d.

ff.

mit der gottlichen glut.'


Zimmer, 'halte ich
mit gottlichem griff.' Sayawa
properly refers amiim to the enemy, and takes haras in
the sense of krodha (haras etymologically = depos cf. II,
erfasse ich

jenen

(?

feuerbrand, ?axt)

2, 2).

Stanza

didhitham

a.

for

5.

didhiyatham. Saya;/a, adipte bhavatam.

Stanza

6.

Recurs with variants at RV. VI, 52, 2; the connection


there

is

less

pregnant.

c.

Saya;/a differently, tapuwshi tapakani te^a/wsi ayudhani va vrz^anani var^akani badhakani santu, i. e. may
'

our

zealous

Perhaps this

deeds or
is

weapons be destructive

to

him.'

simpler.

Stanza

7.

This and the following stanza seem to be adapted from


the funeral ritual (see Amer. Journ. Phil. VII, 476
XI,
Such as they are they occur also in the same
335, 336 ff.).
;

cf. RV. X, 14,


connection in the Paippalada
13; 16, 2.
Stanzas of this character