Page images

The splendour that is in man, that is deposited in elephants, the splendour in gold and kine, in me be that splendour of the elephant. (3.)

The glory that there is in golden dice, in cows and horses, in the Surā being purified, in me be that splendour of the elephant. (4.)

In me be radiance, in me greatness, in me the glory of the sacrifice, in me may Prajāpati make that fast as the heaven in the sky. (5. 1.)

May the Asvins anoint me with the honey of bees, with milk, that a honey-sweet voice I may utter among the folk. (6.)

Snatched out of ghee, rich in honey and milk, winning wealth, bearing and supporting, destroying our foes and putting them down, mount upon me for great good fortune. (7.)

None other than thou, Prajāpati, doth encircle all these beings. That for which we long in sacrificing to thee, be that ours. May we be lords of riches. (8.)

May this ancient (amulet) crush my foes, even as Indra Vộtra, enduring in the battles. As Agni a forest, spread widely, so in the winds the sharp-toothed one rubs me.? (9.)

This ancient one who accords with us in sooth, as Indra Vrtra, has rent the burghs asunder. With this, Indra,

1 Cf. Atharva Veda, vi, 69, 1 ; xiv, 1, 35, for vv. 3 and 4. 2 This is not in the Atharva, but there is no reason to suspect it. We must therefore accept Lüders' doctrine (Das Würfelspiel im ulten Indien, p. 21) that the mention of gold dice need not refer to the late pāśaka game. Even in the Vibhīdaka game a rich man might ostentatiously have golden dice, and this notice shows they were actually used, not merely a ritual aberration ; J.R.A.S., 1908, p. 827. 3 Cf. Atharva Veda, vi, 69, 3. We must pronounce

vam va or diveva for the metre, almost certainly the latter, see Oldenberg, Z.D.M.G., Ixi, 830-2.

I read, for samahān, samanktām, nkt being misread. Payas is = payasā on Roth’s principle, cf. Wackernagel, Altind. Gramm., i, p. xvii ; Pischel, Ved. Stud., ii, 331. See Atharva Veda, vi, 69, 2; ix, 1, 19, and for madhu and payas the next verse, and S.B.E., xlii, 587 ; RV., ix, 11, 2.

5 Cf. Atharva Veda, v, 28, 14 ; xix, 33, 2; Scheftelowitz, Die Apokryphen des Rgveda, p. 118. The last parallel is against reading (a)dhārayişnuh.

6 Ř V., x, 121, 10.

. I take sano as 'ancient.' The 'sharp-toothed' is the amulet which in the wind strikes against the speaker's body, as Agni on the trees of the forest. For the theory of wind and forest fires, see Hopkins, J.A.O.S., xx, 217; xxiv, 390, 391 ; Hillebrandt, Vedische Mythologie, ii, 65, n. 1. The rendering and reading of the verses which occur only here are veryuncertain.


smiting aside the foes, bring us the wealth of the hostile ones. (10. 2.)

Conquer the foes, conquer, hero, the enemy. Slaying Vrtra, cleave him with thine axe. Like the flood pieces of wood, let him smite away our foes, and lay low our enemies as an axe the woods.2 (11.)

Cleave along from the middle, cleave forward from above, cleave from behind, cleave, O hero; the foes smitten by thee, O bountiful one, O hero, let the Maruts follow thee as thou destroyest. (12.)

Thee swelling with Rudra's darts, deeming thee Indra, let the Maruts gladly choose. Let the vultures and heróns seize on them (the foes). May the tusker be joyous in the increase.3 (13.)

O bountiful one, may thy blows fall on all sides on the enemy smitten by the spell. May they own no friend, no support. Mutually hindering they go to death.4 (14.)

O glorious Agni, bring us to glory. Bring hither Indra's recompense. May he be the head, the supreme, the splendid, of his kinsmen may he have the highest praise. (15. 3.)

With auspicious glances they have sat down. The Rşis who know heaven have come to the consecration.

Then were heroism, strength, and might born. May this the gods to him make obedient. (16.)

Creator, disposer, highest seer, Prajāpati, the supreme, the splendid. The Stomas, the metres, the Nivids mine they call. To him may they make the kingdom obedient." (17.)


| The reading is doubtful, but Indra must be supplied, I think, and puro (apparently in the Berlin MS.) is rather better, though duro is quite possible ; and then kilah might be read.

Jahyāt, which must be read, has a somewhat unusual sense here. 3 i.e. eat the bodies. This is fair sense without emendation. The meaning of kanka is doubtful, cf. kankaparvan, Bloomfield, S.B.E., xlii, 558 ; Zimmer, Altind. Leben, p. 92.

I read jñātāram iśata pratişthāņ mitho vighnānā upayānti ; cf. Atharva Veda, vi, 32, 3; viii, 8, 21; Bloomfield, S.B.E., xlii, 475 ; Ăśvalāyana Gșhya Sūtra, iii, 10, 11.

5. For vv. 15-18, cf. Taittirīya Samhitā, v, 7, 4, 3–5, with a good many variants. The verses here are absurdly out of place.

6 Cf. Atharva Veda, xix, 41, 1; Taittirīya Aranyaka, iii, 11, 9. I read bhadram paśyanta and kşatram. Tato is probably an error for tapo.

? The reading appears to be stomāms, perhaps a correction for the Approach hither, pay him honour. Let Agni be our ruler and our king. Be ye in accordance with his will. On him hereafter do ye all depend. (18.)

Thou art born, Alarda by name, before the sun, before the dawn. I know thee as destroyer of my enemies, and overthrower of their supports. (19.)

He will not be cut off in the midst (of life), he will overcome his foe, he will be skilled in speech, he will be strong against battles, his foe they call likely to perish, who bears a comforting amulet of Bilva. (20. 4.)

He eats not accursed food, he commits no sin, the heavenly Varuņa terrifies him not, nor slays him, wrath overcomes him not in anger, who bears a comforting amulet of Bilva. (21.)

Jātavedas injures not his skin. He eats not flesh ó nor harms these (creatures). After a hundred (years of life), reaching old age, in this world, he departs, who bears a comforting amulet of Bilva. (22.)

No offspring of his is harmed in birth, no robber, no evil deed is there, nothing else amiss happens in his families, who bears a comforting amulet of Bilva. (23.)

In his house there are no reviling 6 nor scolding women, nor those who quarrel. Misfortune comes not to him, nor does she fix her abode in him, who bears a comforting amulet of Bilva. (24.)

Him neither Raksas nor Piśāca injures, nor Jambhaka,nor Asura, nor Yakşa. In his house there is no lying-in woman,' who bears a comforting amulet of Bilva. (25. 5.)

stomās of the Samhitā (where āhuḥ is parenthetical, cf. note on Aitareya Āranyaka, ii, 3, 8).

| This verse is altered to make Agni subject.

2 Alarda is a new word (the nearest word in appearance is alarka, Böhtlingk, Dict., i, 294 ; Bloomfield, S.B.E., xlii, 536, n. 2), but there is no special reason to doubt the reading. 3 For the loc., cf. Āpastamba Srauta Sūtra, xv, 21, 8; p. 5, n. 2.

Saptam for the suptam of the MSS., which hardly makes sense. Spells against curses are not rare in the Atharvan, cf. Bloomfield, S.B.E., xlii, 285, 556.

5 Cf. Weber, Ind. Stud., xvii, 280, 314 ; Hopkins, J.A.O.S., xiii, 119, 120.

6 Apavādā is probably an adjective like pravādakā, which I read for pravātakā, which, however, might perhaps be rendered unsteady.' The reading sampatantyo seems certain, and the last part of the line must be construed with the next line.

7 Some sort of demon, cf. Vājasaneyi Samhitā, xxx, 16; Böhtlingk's Dict., s.v. ; and cf. jambha, Bloomfield, S.B.E., xlii, 283.

Him neither tiger, nor wolf, nor panther, nor beast of prey whatsoever hurts. No angry elephant meets he to scare him, who bears a comforting amulet of Bilva. (26.)

No serpent, nor viper, nor scorpion, nor striped one,” nor black one injures him, who bears a comforting amulet of Bilva. (27.)

He sins not so that Varuņa harms him ; no crocodile, nor shark, nor porpoise injures him; on all sides it makes peace for him, who bears a comforting amulet of Bilva. (28.)

They say his foe is likely to perish, like a flower fallen 3 from its stalk. Like the flood pieces of wood, he shall overcome his foes, who bears a comforting amulet of Bilva. (29.)

This amulet, the reverter,4 of the Jamba,” is tied on for the sake of life. By it Indra slew Vrtra, and by the help of the wise Rşi. (30. 6.)

Overcome, Indra, our foes, overcome our enemies, overcome the warriors ; like an elephant (?) with its fore-feet, outmatch the warriors. (31.)

Here has come the amulet of Bilva, the strong subduer of foes. The Rşis, all heroic, behold it that they may overcome their foes in the battle. (32.)

Ambrosia is the thread in this amulet. May the Asvins fasten (the thread). Thou art of the Bilva, of a thousand powers. May I that bear thee never be injured. (33.)

Snatched out6 of ghee, rich in honey and milk, winning

1 For the tabu of such women, cf. Frazer, Anthropological Essays, pp. 151 seq. ; Taittiriya Samhitā, ii, 5, 1, 5.

? Tiraścīnarājā should, I think, be read, cf. tiraścirāji in Atharva Veda, iii, 27, 2; Bloomfield, S.B.E., xlii, 488 ; Weber, Ind. Stud., xvii, 297 ; tiraścīnarāji in Maitrāyani Samhitā, ii, 13, 21. It would be tempting to render tiraści na rājā as nor beast nor king' (for the king's exactions, cf. Hopkins, J.A.0.S., xiii, 89 seq.), but the form tiraści would be difficult, and the joke beyond the writer. For krşna, cf. Atharva Veda, xi, 2, 2 ; vii, 56, 2; Maitrāyani Samhitā, iii, 14, 17.

3 An early instance of saha with a verb of separation ; Whitney, Sanskrit Grammar, p. 95. For śāpa, cf. Geldner, Ved. Stud., iii, 184.

4 Cf. Atharva Veda, iv, 40; punaḥsarā, iv, 17, 2; Weber, Ind. Stud., xiii, 164 ; xviii, 74, 75, 182 ; Ludwig, Rgveda, iii, 345; Zimmer, Altind. Leben, p. 263; Bloomfield, J.A.0.S., xiii, p. cxxxiii ; S.B.E., xlii, 394, 576. 5 Presumably a plant, cf. Böhtlingk's Dict., s.v. jambāla. V. 34 =

= v. 7 ; v. 35 = v. 8.


wealth, bearing and supporting, destroying our foes and putting them down, mount upon me for great good fortune. (34.)

None other than thou (Prajāpati) doth encircle all these beings. That for which we long in sacrificing to thee, be that ours. May we be lords of riches. (35.)

Then come five verses,” (beginning), “Thou art the great ruler here.' (7.)

Then follows the ritual of the amulet. A man who desires prosperity should fast on flowers for three nights, then taking a piece from a living? elephant's tusk, he should pile up the fire, sweep out (the place of sacrifice), scatter grass, sprinkle water around, and bending his right knee, place the amulet in a vessel to the north of the fire, sacrifice, and pour upon the amulet the remnant from the oblation, to the accompaniment of the eight verses (vv. 1-8), beginning "Splendour of the elephant,' verse by verse. Then for seven nights, or three nights, or one he should leave it to stand in honey and ghee and then put it on, with the verse (v.7) •Snatched out of ghee.' Then next with six (vv. 9-14) he should put on, having left it to stand for three nights or one in a mess of) meat and boiled rice, an amulet of the point of the heart-spit or the point of the goad or the point of the mortar or of the core 3 of the Acacia catechu. Then next with four verses (vv. 15-18) he should put on an amulet of the point of a bull's horn, having left it to stand for three nights or one in (a mess of) ghee and boiled rice. Then next with one verse (v. 19) he should put on an amulet of the castor-oil plant, having left it to stand for three nights or one in (a mess of) sesamum and boiled rice. Then next with sixteen verses (vv. 20–35) he should put on an amulet of Bilva, having left it to stand for seven nights or three or one in honey and ghee, fastening it with the verse (v. 34) Snatched out of ghee.' Then with the next five

| RV., x, 152, 1 ; also cited in ii, 15.
. Cf. Bloomfield, S.B.E., xlii, 287, n. 1.

3 Khadirasāramanim, where sāra cannot mean resin (rasa). The Khadira is chosen as a specially hard wood, cf. Bloomfield, S.B.E., xlii, 609, 610. For the heart-spit, cf. ibid., 506. For the whole rite, cf. Caland, Altind, Zauberritual, p. 11, n. 8.

« PreviousContinue »