Vedic Hymns, Part I (SBE32), by Max Müller, , at sacred-texts.com
1. Those who glance forth like wives and yoke-fellows 1, the powerful sons of Rudra on their way, they, the Maruts, have indeed made heaven and earth to grow 2; they, the strong and wild, delight in the sacrifices.
2. When grown up 1, they attained to greatness; the Rudras have established their seat in the sky. While singing their song and increasing their vigour, the sons of Prisni have clothed themselves in beauty 2.
3. When these sons of the cow (Prisni) 1 adorn themselves with glittering ornaments, the brilliant 2 ones put bright weapons on their bodies 3. They drive away every adversary 4; fatness (rain) streams along their paths;—
4. When you 1, the powerful, who shine with your spears, shaking even what is unshakable by strength,—when you, O Maruts, the manly hosts 2, had yoked the spotted deer, swift as thought, to your chariots;—
5. When you had yoked the spotted deer before your chariots, hurling 1 the stone (thunderbolt) in the fight, then the streams of the red-(horse) 2 rush forth: like a skin 3 with water they water the earth.
6. May the swiftly-gliding, swift-winged horses carry you hither! Come forth with your arms 1! Sit down on the grass-pile; a wide seat has been made for you. Rejoice, O Maruts, in the sweet food 2.
7. Strong in themselves, they grew 1 with might; they stepped to the firmament, they made their seat wide. When Vishnu 2 saved the enrapturing Soma, the Maruts sat down like birds on their beloved altar.
8. Like 1 heroes indeed thirsting for fight they rush about; like combatants eager for glory they have striven in battles. All beings are afraid of the Maruts; they are men terrible to behold, like kings.
9. When the clever Tvashtar 1 had turned the well-made, golden, thousand-edged thunderbolt, Indra takes it to perform his manly deeds 2; he slew Vritra, he forced out the stream of water.
10. By their power they pushed the well 1 aloft, they clove asunder the rock (cloud), however strong. Blowing forth their voice 2 the bounteous Maruts performed, while drunk of Soma, their glorious deeds.
11. They pushed the well (cloud) athwart this way, they poured out the spring to the thirsty Gotama. The Maruts with beautiful splendour approach him with help, they in their own ways satisfied the desire of the sage.
12. The shelters which you have for him who praises you, grant them threefold 1 to the man who gives! Extend the same to us, O Maruts! Give us, ye heroes 2, wealth with valiant offspring!
This hymn is ascribed to Gotama. No verse of this hymn occurs in SV., VS.; verse 6 = AV. XX, 13, 2; verse 7 = TS. IV, 1, 11, 3; verse 12 = TS. I, 5, 11, 5; TB. II, 8, 5, 6.
Note 1. The phrase gánayah ná sáptayah is obscure. As gáni has always the meaning of wife, and sápti in the singular, dual, and plural means horse, it might be supposed that gánayah could be connected with sáptayah, so as to signify mares. But although gáni is coupled with patnî, I, 62, 10, in the sense of mother-wife, and though sápti is most commonly joined with some other name for horse, yet gánayah sáptayah never occurs, for the simple reason that it would be too elaborate and almost absurd an expression for vadavâh. We find sápti joined with vâgín, I, 162, 1; with ráthya, II, 31, 7; átyam ná sáptim, III, 22, 1; sáptî hárî, III, 35, 2; ásvâ sáptî-iva, VI, 59, 3.
We might then suppose the thought of the poet to have been this: What appears before us like race-horses, viz. the storms coursing through the sky, that is really the host of the Maruts. But then gánayah remains unexplained, and it is impossible to take gánayah ná sáptayah as two similes, like unto horses, like unto wives.
I believe, therefore, that we must here take sápti in its original etymological sense, which would be ju-mentum, a yoked animal, a beast of draught, or rather a follower, a horse that will follow. Sápti, therefore, could never be a wild horse, but always a tamed horse, a horse that will go in harness. Cf. IX, 21, 4. hitâ´h ná sáptayah ráthe, like horses put to the chariot; or in the singular, IX, 70, 10. hitáh ná sáptih, like a harnessed horse. The root is sap, which in the Veda means to follow, to attend on, to worship. But if sápti means originally animals that will go
together, it may in our passage have retained the sense of yoke-fellow (σύζυγος), and be intended as an adjective to gánayah, wives. There is at least one other passage where this meaning would seem to be more appropriate,. viz.
VIII, 20, 23. yûyám sakhâyah saptayah.
You (Maruts), friends and followers! or you, friends and comrades!
Here it is hardly possible to assign to sápti the sense of horse, for the Maruts, though likened to horses, are never thus barely invoked as saptayah!
If then we translate, 'Those who glance forth like wives and yoke-fellows,' i. e. like wives of the same husband, the question still recurs how the simile holds good, and how the Maruts rushing forth together in all their beauty can be compared to wives. In answer to this we have to bear in mind that the idea of many wives belonging to one husband (sapatnî) is familiar to the Vedic poet, and that their impetuously rushing into the arms of their husbands, and appearing before them in all their beauty, are frequent images in their poetry. In such phrases as pátim ná gánayah and gánayah ná gárbham, the ganis, the wives or mothers, are represented as running together after their husbands or children. This impetuous approach the poet may have wished to allude to in our passage also, but though it might have been understood at once by his hearers, it is almost impossible to convey this implied idea in any other language.
Wilson translates: 'The Maruts, who are going forth, decorate themselves like females: they are gliders (through the air), the sons of Rudra, and the doers of good works, by which they promote the welfare of earth and heaven. Heroes, who grind (the solid rocks), they delight in sacrifices.'
Ludwig translates: 'Die ganz besonders sich schmücken wie frauen, die renner, zu ihrem zuge,' &c. This is possible, yet the simile sounds somewhat forced.
Note 2. The meaning of this phrase, which occurs very frequently, was originally that the storms by driving away the dark clouds, made the earth and the sky to appear
larger and wider. It afterwards takes a more general sense of increasing, strengthening, blessing.
Note 1. Ukshitá is here a participle of vaksh or uksh, to grow, to wax; not of uksh, to sprinkle, to anoint, to inaugurate, as explained by Sâyana. Thus it is said of the Maruts, V, 55, 3. sâkám gâtâ´h—sâkám ukshitâ´h, born together, and grown up together.
Note 2. The same expression occurs VIII, 28, 5. saptó (iti) ádhi sríyah dhire. See also I, 116, 17; IX, 68, 1.
Note 1. Gó-mâtri, like gó-gâta, a name of the Maruts, who are also called prísni-mâtarah, sindhu-mâtarah.
Note 2. Subhrá is applied to the Maruts, I, i9, 5. Otherwise, no doubt, it might refer, as Ludwig remarks, to virúkmatah, always supposing that virúkmat is a feminine. Whether tanûshu subhrâh can stand for tanûshu subhrâsu is more doubtful.
Note 3. Virúkmatah must be an accusative plural. It occurs I, 127, 3, as an epithet of ógas; VI, 49, 5, as an epithet of the chariot of the Asvins. In our place, however, it must be taken as a substantive, signifying something which the Maruts wear, probably armour or weapons. This follows chiefly from X, 138, 4. sátrûn asrinât virúkmatâ, Indra tore his enemies with the bright weapon. In VIII, 20, 11, where rukmá occurs as a masculine plural, vi bhrâgante rukmâ´sah ádhi bâhúshu, their bright things shine on their arms, it seems likewise to be meant for weapons; according to Sâyana, for chains. In V, 55, 3; X, 78, 3, the Maruts are called vi-rokínah, bright like the rays of the sun or the tongues of fire.
Note 4. Observe the short syllable in the tenth syllable of this Pâda; Benfey, Vedica, p. 124; Lanman, Noun-Inflection, pp. 378, 543.
Note 1. The sudden transition from the third to the second person is not unusual in the Vedic hymns, the fact
being that where we in a relative sentence should use the same person as that of the principal verb, the Vedic poets frequently use the third.
Note 2. Vrísha-vrâta is untranslatable for reasons stated p. 138 seq.; it means consisting of companies of vríshans, in whatever sense that word be taken. Wilson in his translation mistakes ákyutâ for ákyutâh, and vrâta for vrata. He translates the former by 'incapable of being overthrown,' the latter by 'entrusted with the duty of sending rain,' both against the authority of Sâyana. Vríshavrăta occurs twice in the Rig-veda as an epithet of Soma only, IX, 62, 11; 64, 1.
Note 1. If we take ádri for cloud, then ramh might have the meaning of stirring up.
V, 32, 2. tvám útsân ritú-bhih badbadhânâ´n áramhah.
Thou madest the springs to run that had been shut up by the seasons.
VIII, 19, 6. tásya ít árvantah ramhayante âsávah. His horses only run quick.
But ádri often means stone, in the sense of weapon, or bolt (cf. adrivah, voc., wielder of the thunderbolt), and ramhayati would then have the meaning of hurling. This is the meaning adopted by Benfey and Ludwig.
Note 2. The red may be the dark red cloud, but arushá has almost become a proper name, and its original meaning of redness is forgotten. Nay, it is possible that arushá, as applied to the same power of darkness which is best known by the names of Vritra, Dasyu, &c., may never have had the sense of redness, but been formed straight from ar, to hurt, from which arvan, arus, &c. (see p. 65 seq.). It would then mean simply the hurter, the enemy. It is possible also to take arushá in the sense of the red horse, the leader between the two Haris, when we ought to remember that the Maruts pour forth the streams of the stallion, RV. V, 83, 6. prá pinvata vríshnah ásvasya dhâ´râh, and that they lead about the horse to make it rain, RV. I, 64, 6. átyam ná mihé ví nayanti vâgínam.
Note 3. Sâyana explains: 'They moisten the whole earth like a hide,' a hide representing a small surface which is watered without great effort. Wilson: 'They moisten the earth, like a hide, with water.' Langlois: 'Alors les gouttes d’eau, perçant comme la peau de ce (nuage) bienfaisant viennent inonder la terre.' Benfey: 'Dann stû´rzen reichlich aus der rothen (Gewitterwolke) Tropfen, mit Fluth wie eine Haut die Erde netzend. (Dass die Erde so durchnässt wird, wie durchregnetes Leder.)' If the poet had intended to compare the earth, before it is moistened by rain, to a hide, he might have had in his mind the dryness of a tanned skin, or, as Professor Benfey says, of leather. If, on the contrary, the simile refers to the streams of water, then kárma-iva, like a skin, might either be taken in the technical acceptation of the skin through which, at the preparation of the Soma, the streams (dhârâh) of that beverage are squeezed and distilled, or we may take the word in the more general sense of water-skin. In that case the comparison, though not very pointedly expressed, as it would have been by later Sanskrit poets, would still be complete. The streams of the red-(horse), i. e. of the cloud, rush forth, and they, whether the streams liberated by the Maruts, or the Maruts themselves, moisten the earth with water, like a skin, i. e. like a skin in which water is kept and from which it is poured out. The cloud itself being called a skin by Vedic poets (I, 129, 3) makes the comparison still more natural.
One other explanation might suggest itself, if the singular of kárma should be considered objectionable on account of the plural of the verb. Vedic poets speak of the skin of the earth. Thus:
X, 68, 4. bhû´myâh udnâ´-iva vi tvákam bibheda.
He (Brihaspati) having driven the cows from the cave, cut the skin of the earth, as it were, with water, i. e. saturated it with rain.
The construction, however, if we took kárma in the sense of surface, would be very irregular, and we should have to translate: They moisten the earth with water like a skin, i. e. skin-deep.
We ought to scan kārmḗvōdắbhīh vĭ́ ūndā́ntĭ bhû̄́mā for kārmēvă ŭdăbhīh vyūndāntĭ bhû̄mā would give an unusual cæsura.
Note 1. AV. XX, 13, 2. With your arms, i. e. according to Sâyana, with armfuls of gifts. Though this expression does not occur again so baldly, we read I, 166, 10, of the Maruts, that there are many gifts in their strong arms, bhûrîni bhadrâ´ náryeshu bâhúshu; nor does bâhú, as used in the plural, as far as I am able to judge, ever convey any meaning but that of arms. The idea that the Maruts are carried along by their arms as by wings, does not rest on Vedic authority, otherwise we might join raghupátvânah with bâhúbhih, come forth swiftly flying on your arms! As it is, and with the accent on the antepenultimate, we must refer raghupátvânah to sáptayah, horses.
Note 2. The sweet food is Soma.
Note 1. The initial 'a' of avardhanta must be elided, or 'té a' be pronounced as two short syllables equal to one long.
Note 2. Taitt. S. IV, I, 11, 3. Vishnu, whose character in the hymns of the Veda is very different from that assumed by him in later periods of Hindu religion, must here be taken as the friend and companion of Indra. Like the Maruts, he assisted Indra in his battle against Vritra and the conquest of the clouds. When Indra was forsaken by all the gods, Vishnu came to his help.
IV, 18, 11. utá mâtâ´ mahishám ánu avenat amî´ (iti) tvâ gahati putra devâ´h,
átha abravît vritrám índrah hanishyán sákhe vishno (íti) vi-tarám ví kramasva.
The mother also called after the bull, these gods forsake thee, O son; then, when going to kill Vritra, Indra said, Friend, Vishnu, step forward!
This stepping of Vishnu is emblematic of the rising, the culminating, and setting of the sun; and in VIII, 12, 27,
[paragraph continues] Vishnu is said to perform it through the power of Indra. In VI, 20, 2, Indra is said to have killed Vritra, assisted by Vishnu (víshnunâ sakânáh). Vishnu is therefore invoked together with Indra, VI, 69, 8; VII, 99; with the Maruts, V, 87; VII, 36, 9. In VII, 93, 8, Indra, Vishnu, and the Maruts are called upon together. Nay, mâ´ruta, belonging ta the Maruts, becomes actually an epithet of Vishnu, V, 46, 2. mâ´ruta utá vishno (iti); and in I, 156, 4. mâ´rutasya vedhásah has been pointed out by Roth as an appellation of Vishnu. The mention of Vishnu in our hymn is therefore by no means exceptional, but the whole purport of this verse is nevertheless very doubtful, chiefly owing to the fact that several of the words occurring in it lend themselves to different interpretations.
The translations of Wilson, Benfey, and others have not rendered the sense which the poet intends to describe at all clear. Wilson says: 'May they for whom Vishnu defends (the sacrifice), that bestows all desires and confers delight, come (quickly) like birds, and sit down upon the pleasant and sacred grass.' Benfey: 'Wenn Vishnu schützt den rauschtriefenden tropfenden (Soma), sitzen wie Vögel sie auf der geliebten Streu.' Langlois: 'Quand Vichnou vient prendre sa part de nos enivrantes libations, eux, comme des oiseaux, arrivent aussi sur le cousa qui leur est cher.' Ludwig: 'Als Vishnu half dem zum rauschtrank eilenden stiere, setzten sie sich wie vögel aufs liebe barhis.'
Whence all these varieties? First, because â´vat may mean, he defended or protected, but likewise, it is supposed, he descried, became aware. Secondly, because vríshan is one of the most vague and hence most difficult words in the Veda, and may mean Indra, Soma, or the cloud: (see the note on Vríshan, p. 138.) Thirdly, because the adjective belonging to vríshan, which generally helps us to determine which vríshan is meant, is here itself of doubtful import, and certainly applicable to Indra as well as to Soma and the Asvins, possibly even to the cloud. Mada-kyút is readily explained by the commentators as bringing down pride, a meaning which the word might well have in modern Sanskrit, but which it clearly has not in
the Veda. Even where the thunderbolt of Indra is called madakyút, and where the meaning of 'bringing down pride' would seem most appropriate, we ought to translate 'wildly rushing down.'
VIII, 96, 5. â´ yát vágram bâhvóh indra dhátse madakyútam áhaye hántavai ûm (iti).
When thou tookest the wildly rushing thunderbolt in thy arms in order to slay Ahi.
When applied to the gods, the meaning of madakyút is by no means certain. It might mean rushing about fiercely, reeling with delight, this delight being produced by the Soma, but it may also mean sending down delight, i. e. rain or Soma. The root kyu is particularly applicable to the sending down of rain; cf. Taitt. Samh. II, 4, 9, 2; 10, 3; III, 3, 4, 1; and Indra and his horses, to whom this epithet is chiefly applied, are frequently asked to send down rain. However, madakyút is also applied to real horses (I, 126, 4) where givers of rain would be an inappropriate epithet. I should therefore translate madakyút, when applied to Indra, to his horses, to the Asvins, or to horses in general by furiously or wildly moving about, as if 'made or madena kyavate,' he moves in a state of delight, or in a state of intoxication, such as was not incompatible with the character of the ancient gods. Here again the difficulty of rendering Vedic thought in English, or any other modern language, becomes apparent, for we have no poetical word to express a high state of mental excitement produced by drinking the intoxicating juice of the Soma or other plants, which has not something opprobrious mixed up with it, while in ancient times that state of excitement was celebrated as a blessing of the gods, as not unworthy of the gods themselves, nay, as a state in which both the warrior and the poet would perform their highest achievements. The German R a u sc h is the nearest approach to the Sanskrit mada.
VIII, I, 21. vísveshâm tarutâ´ram mada-kyútam máde hí sma dádâti nah.
Indra, the conqueror of all, who rushes about in rapture, for in rapture he bestows gifts upon us. Cf. I, 51, 2.
The horses of Indra are called madakyút, I, 81, 3; VIII, 33, 18; 34, 9. Ordinary horses, I, 126, 4.
It is more surprising to see this epithet applied to the Asvins, who are generally represented as moving about with exemplary steadiness. However we read:
VIII, 22, 16. mánah-gavasâ vrishanâ mada-kyutâ.
Ye two Asvins, quick as thought, powerful, wildly moving; or, as Sâyana proposes, liberal givers, humblers of your enemies. See also VIII, 35, 19.
Most frequently madakyút is applied to Soma, X, 30, 9; IX, 32, 1; 53, 4; 79, 2; 108, 11; where particularly the last passage deserves attention, in which Soma is called madakyútam sahásra-dhâram vrishabhám.
Lastly, even the wealth itself which the Maruts are asked to send down from heaven, most likely rain, is called, VIII, 7, 13, rayím mada-kyútam puru-kshúm visvadhâyasam.
In all these passages we must translate mada-kyút by bringing delight, showering down delight.
We have thus arrived at the conclusion that vríshanam mada-kyútam, as used in our passage I, 85, 7, might be meant either for Indra or for Soma. If the Asvins can be called vríshanau mada-kyútâ, the same expression would be even more applicable to Indra. On the other hand, if Soma is called vrishabháh mada-kyút, the same Soma may legitimately be called vríshâ inada-kyút. In deciding whether Indra or Soma be meant, we must now have recourse to other hymns, in which the relations of the Maruts with Vishnu, Soma, and Indra are alluded to.
If Indra were intended, and if the first words meant 'When Vishnu perceived the approach of Indra,' we should expect, not that the Maruts sat down on the sacrificial pile, but that they rushed to the battle. The idea that the Maruts come to the sacrifice, like birds, is common enough:
VIII, 20, 10. vrishanasvéna marutah vrísha-psunâ ráthena vrísha-nâbhinâ, â´ syenâ´sah ná pakshínah vríthâ narah havyâ´ nah vîtáye gata.
Come ye Maruts together, to eat our offerings, on your
strong-horsed, strong-shaped, strong-naved chariot, like winged hawks!
But when the Maruts thus come to a sacrifice it is to participate in it, and particularly in the Soma that is offered by the sacrificer. This Soma, it is said in other hymns, was prepared by Vishnu for Indra (II, 22, 1), and Vishnu is said to have brought the Soma for Indra (X, 113, 2). If we keep these and similar passages in mind. and consider that in the preceding verse the Maruts have been invited to sit down on the sacrificial pile and to rejoice in the sweet food, we shall see that the same train of thought is carried on in our verse, the only new idea being that the saving or, possibly, the descrying of the Soma is ascribed to Vishnu. See, however, Bergaigne, Journ. Asiat. 1884, p 472.
Note 1. On na and iva together, see Bollensen, Orient and Occident, II, 470.
Note 1. Tváshtar, the workman of the gods, frequently. also the fashioner and creator.
Note 2. Nári, the loc. sing. of nri, but, if so, with a wrong accent, occurs only in this phrase as used here, and as repeated in VIII, 96, 19. nári ápâmsi kártâ sáh vritrahâ´. Its meaning is not clear. It can hardly mean 'on man,' without some more definite application. If nri could be used as a name of Vritra or any other enemy, it would mean, to do his deeds against the man, on the enemy. Nri, however, is ordinarily an honorific term, chiefly applied to Indra, IV, 25, 4. náre náryâya nrí-tamâya nrinâ´m, and hence its application to Vritra would be objectionable. Sâyana explains it in the sense of battle. I believe that nári stands for náryâ, the acc. plur. neut. of nárya, manly, and the frequent epithet of ápas, and I have translated accordingly. Indra is called nárya-apas, VIII, 93, 1. See also Kuhn's Zeitschrift, vol. xxv, p. 601.
Note 1. Avatá, a well, here meant for cloud, like útsa, I, 64, 6.
Note 2. Dhámantah vânám is translated by Sâyana as playing on the lyre, by Benfey as blowing the flute. Such a rendering, particularly the latter, would be very appropriate, but there is no authority for vâná meaning either lyre or flute in the Veda. Vâná occurs five times only. In one passage, VIII, 20, 8. góbhih vânáh agyate, it means arrow; the arrow is sent forth from the bow-strings. The same meaning seems applicable to IX, 50, I. vânásya kodaya pavím. In another passage, IX, 97, 8. prá vadanti vânám, they send forth their voice, is applied to the Maruts, as in our passage; in IV, 24, 9, the sense is doubtful, but here too vâná clearly does not mean a musical instrument. See III, 30, 10. Spiegel compares the Huzvaresh and Armenian vâng (Pers. bânig), voice. M. Senart (Journal Asiatique, 1874, p. 281) is in favour of taking vâna for flute.
Note 1. In the Taitt. S. I, 5, 11, we have sasamânâya, and in the Taitt. Br. II, 8, 5, 6, samsamânâya, but Sâyana explains sasamânâya, samsanam kurvate. He explains tridhâtûni by asanam, pânam, khâdanam.
Note 2. In vríshan we have one of those words which it is almost impossible to translate accurately. It occurs over and over again in the Vedic hymns, and if we once know the various ideas which it either expresses or implies, we have little difficulty in understanding its import in a vague and general way, though we look in vain for corresponding terms in any modern language. In the Veda, and in ancient languages generally, one and the same word is frequently made to do service for many. Words retain their general meaning,—though at the same time they are evidently used with a definite purpose. This is not only a peculiar phase of language, but a peculiar phase of thought, and as to us this phase has become strange and unreal, it is very difficult to transport ourselves back into it, still more to translate the pregnant terms of the Vedic poets into the definite languages which we have to use. Let us imagine a state of
thought and speech in which virtus still meant manliness, though it might also be applied to the virtue of a woman; or let us try to speak and think a language which expressed the bright and the divine, the brilliant and the beautiful, the straight and the right, the bull and the hero, the shepherd and the king by the same terms, and we shall see how difficult it would be to translate such terms without losing either the key-note that was still sounding, or the harmonics which were set vibrating by it in the minds of the poets and their listeners.
1. Vríshan, male.
Vríshan, being derived from a root vrish, spargere, meant no doubt originally the male, whether applied to animals or men. In this sense vríshan occurs frequently in the Veda, either as determining the sex of the animal which is mentioned, or as standing by itself and meaning the male. In either case, however, it implies the idea of strength and eminence, which we lose whether we translate it by man or male.
Thus ásva is horse, but VII, 69, 1, we read:
â´ vâm ráthah—vrísha-bhih yâtu ásvaih.
May your chariot come near with powerful horses, i. e. with stallions.
The Háris, the horses of Indra, are frequently called vríshanâ
I, 177, 1. yuktvâ´ hárî (iti) vríshanâ.
Having yoked the bay stallions.
Vrishabá, though itself originally meaning the male animal, had become fixed as the name of the bull, and in this process it had lost so much of its etymological import that the Vedic poet did not hesitate to define vrishabhá itself by the addition of vríshan. Thus we find:
VIII, 93, 7. sáh vríshâ vrishabháh bhuvat.
May he (Indra) be a strong bull.
I, 54, 2. vríshâ vrisha-tvâ´ vrishabháh.
Indra by his strength a strong bull; but, literally, Indra by his manliness a male bull.
Even vrishabhá loses again its definite meaning; and as
bull in bull-calf means simply male, or in bull-trout, large, so vrishabhá is added to átya, horse, to convey the meaning of large or powerful:
I, 177, 2. yé te vríshanah vrishabhâ´sah indra—átyâh. Thy strong and powerful horses; literally, thy male bull-horses.
When vríshan and vrishabhá are used as adjectives, for instance with súshma, strength, they hardly differ in meaning:
VI, 19, 8. â´ nah bhara vríshanam súshmam indra.
Bring us thy manly strength, O Indra.
And in the next verse:
VI, 19, 9. â´ te súshmah vrishabháh etu.
May thy manly strength come near.
Vámsaga, too, which is clearly the name for bull, is defined by vríshan, I, 7, 8:
vríshâ yûthâ´-iva vámsagah.
As the strong bull scares the herds.
The same applies to varâ´ha, which, though by itself meaning boar, is determined again by vríshan:
X, 67, 7. vrísha-bhih varâ´haih.
With strong boars.
In III, 2, 11, we read:
vríshâ—nâ´nadat ná simháh.
Like a roaring lion.
If used by itself, vríshan, at least in the Rig-veda, can hardly be said to be the name of any special animal, though in later Sanskrit it may mean bull or horse. Thus if we read, X, 43, 8, vríshâ ná kruddháh, we can only translate like an angry male, though, no doubt, like a wild bull, would seem more appropriate.
I, 186, 5. yéna nápâtam apâ´m gunâ´ma manah-gúvah vríshanah yám váhanti.
That we may excite the son of the water (Agni), whom the males, quick as thought, carry along.
Here the males are no doubt the horses or stallions of Agni. But, though this follows from the context, it would be wrong to say that vríshan by itself means horse.
If used by itself, vríshan most frequently means man, and chiefly in his sexual character. Thus:
I, 140, 6. vríshâ-iva pátnîh abhí eti róruvat.
Agni comes roaring like a husband to his wives.
I, 179, i. ápi ûm (íti) nú pátnîh vríshanah gagamyuh.
Will the husbands now come to their wives?
II, 16, 8. sakrít sú te sumatí-bhih—sám pátnîbhih ná vríshanah nasîmahi.
May we for once cling firmly to thy blessings, as husbands cling to their wives.
V, 47, 6. upa-prakshé vríshanah módamânâh diváh pathâ´ vadhvãh yanti ákkha.
The exulting men come for the embrace on the path of heaven towards their wives.
In one or two passages vríshan would seem to have a still more definite meaning, particularly in the formula sû´rah drísîke vríshanah ka paûmsye, which occurs IV, 41, 6; X, 92, 7. See also I, 179, 1.
In all the passages which we have hitherto examined vríshan clearly retained its etymological meaning, though even then it was not always possible to translate it by mal e.
The same meaning has been retained in other languages in which this word can be traced. Thus, in Zend, arshan (the later gushan) is used to express the sex of animals in such expressions as aspahé arshnô, gen. a male horse; varâzahe arshnô, gen. a male boar; géus arshnô, gen. a male ox; but likewise in the sense of man or hero, as arsha husrava, the hero Husrava. In Greek we find ἄρσην and ἄῤῥην used in the same way to distinguish the sex of animals, as ἄρσενες ἵπποι, βοῦν ἄρσενα. In Latin the same word may be recognised in the proper name Varro, and in vâro and bâro.
We now come to another class of passages in which vríshan is clearly intended to express more than merely the masculine gender. In some of them the etymological meaning of spargere, to pour forth, seems to come out again, and it is well known that Indian commentators are very fond of explaining vríshan by giver of rain, giver of
good gifts, bounteous. The first of these meanings may indeed be admitted in certain passages, but in others it is more than doubtful.
II. Vríshan, fertilising.
I, 181, 8. vríshâ vâm megháh may be translated, your raining cloud.
I, 129, 3. dasmáh hí sma vríshanam pinvasi tvákam.
Thou art strong, thou fillest the rainy skin, i. e. the cloud.
See also IV, 22, 6; and possibly V, 83, 6.
It may be that, when applied to Soma too, vríshan retained something of its etymological meaning, that it meant gushing forth, poured out, though in many places it is impossible to render vríshan, as applied to Soma, by anything but strong. All we can admit is that vríshan, if translated by strong, means also strengthening and invigorating, an idea not entirely absent even in our expression, a strong drink.
III. Vríshan, strong.
I, 80, 2. sáh tvâ amadat vríshâ mádah, sómah—sutáh.
This strong draught inspirited thee, the poured out Soma-juice.
I, 91, 2. tvám vríshâ vrisha-tvébhih.
Thou, Soma, art strong by strength.
I, 175, 1. vríshâ te vríshne índuh vâgî´ sahasra-sâ´tamah.
For thee, the strong one, there is strong drink, powerful, omnipotent.
In the ninth Mandala, specially dedicated to the praises of Soma, the inspiriting beverage of gods and men, the repetition of vríshan, as applied to the juice and to the god who drinks it, is constant. Indo vríshâ or vríshâ indo are incessant invocations, and become at last perfectly meaningless.
IV. Vríshan, epitheton ornans.
There can be no doubt, in fact, that already in the hymns of the Veda, vríshan had dwindled away to a mere epitheton ornans, and that in order to understand it correctly, we must, as much as possible, forget its etymological
colouring, and render it by hero or strong. Indra, Agni, the Asvins, Vishnu, the Ribhus (IV, 35, 6), all are vríshan, which means no longer male, but manly, strong.
In the following passages vríshan is thus applied to Indra:
I, 54, 2. yáh dhrishnúnâ sávasâ ródasî (íti) ubhé (íti) vríshâ vrisha-tvâ´ vrishabháh ni-riñgáte.
(Praise Indra) who by his daring strength conquers both heaven and earth, a bull, strong in strength.
I, 100, 1. sáh yáh vríshâ vríshnyebhih sám-okâh maháh diváh prithivyâ´h ka sam-râ´t satîná-satvâ hávyah bháreshu marûtvân nah bhavatu índrah ûtî´.
He who is strong, wedded to strength, who is the king of the great sky and the earth, of mighty might, to be invoked in battles,—may Indra with the Maruts come to our help!
I, 16, 1. â´ tvâ vahantu hárayah vríshanam sóma-pîtaye, Indra tvâ sû´ra-kakshasah.
May the bays bring thee hither, the strong one, to the Soma-draught, may the sunny-eyed horses (bring) thee, O Indra!
IV, 16, 20. evá ít índrâya vrishabhâ´ya vríshne bráhma akarma bhrígavah ná rátham.
Thus we have made a hymn for Indra, the strong bull, as the Bhrigus make a chariot.
X, 153, 2. tvám vrishan vríshâ ít asi.
Thou, O hero, art indeed a hero; and not, Thou, O male, art indeed a male; still less, Thou, O bull, art indeed a bull.
I, 101, 1. avasyávah vríshanam vágra-dakshinam marútvantam sakhyâ´ya havâmahe.
Longing for help we call as our friend the hero who wields the thunderbolt, who is accompanied by the Maruts.
VIII, 6, 14. ní súshne indra dharnasím vágram gaghantha dásyavi, vríshâ hí ugra srinvishé.
Thou, O Indra, hast struck the strong thunderbolt against Sushna, the fiend; for, terrible one, thou art called hero!
VIII, 6, 40. vavridhânáh ûpa dyávi vríshâ vagrî´ aroravît, vritra-hâ´ soma-pâ´tamah.
Growing up by day, the hero with the thunderbolt has roared, the Vritra-killer, the great Soma-drinker.
V, 35, 4. vríshâ hí ási râ´dhase gagñishé vríshni te sávah.
Thou (Indra) art a hero, thou wast born to be bounteous; in thee, the hero, there is might.
V. Várshishtha, strongest, best, oldest.
It is curious to watch the last stage of the meaning of vríshan in the comparative and superlative várshîyas and várshishtha. In the Veda, várshishtha still means excellent, but in later Sanskrit it is considered as the superlative of vriddha, old, so that we see vríshan, from meaning originally manly, vigorous, young, assuming in the end the meaning of old. (M. M., Sanskrit Grammar, § 252.)
Yet even thus, when vríshan means simply strong or hero, its sexual sense is not always forgotten, and it breaks out, for instance, in such passages as,
I, 32, 7. vríshnah vádhrih prati-mâ´nam búbhûshan purutrâ´ vritráh asayat ví-astah.
Vritra, the eunuch, trying to be like unto a man (like unto Indra), was lying, broken to many pieces.
The next passages show vríshan as applied to Agni:
III, 27, 15. vríshanam tvâ vayám vrishan vríshanah sám idhîmahi.
O, strong one, let us the strong ones kindle thee, the strong!
V, I, 12. ávokâma kaváye médhyâya vákah vandâ´ru vrishabhâ´ya vríshne.
We have spoken an adoring speech for the worshipful poet, for the strong bull (Agni).
Vishnu is called vríshan, I, 154, 3:
prá víshnave sûshám etu mánma giri-kshíte uru-gâyâ´ya vríshne.
May this hymn go forth to Vishnu, he who dwells in the mountain"(cloud), who strides wide, the hero!
Rudra is called vríshan:
II, 34, 2. rudráh yát vah marutah rukma-vakshasah vríshâ ágani prísnyah sukré û´dhani.
When Rudra, the strong man, begat you, O Maruts with
bright ornaments on your chests, in the bright lap of Prisni.
That the Maruts, the sons of Rudra, are called vríshan, we have seen before, and shall see frequently again (I, 165, 1; II, 33, 13; VII, 56, 20; 21; 58, 6). The whole company of the Maruts is called vríshâ ganáh, the strong or manly host, i. e. the host of the Maruts, without any further qualification.
VI. Vríshan, name of various deities.
Here lies, indeed, the chief difficulty which is raised by the common use of vríshan in the Veda, that when it occurs by itself, it often remains doubtful who is meant by it, Indra, or Soma, or the Maruts, or some other deity. We shall examine a few of these passages, and first some where vríshan refers to Indra:
IV, 30, 10. ápa ushâ´h ánasah sarat sám-pishtât áha bibhyúshî, ní yát sîm sisnáthat vríshâ.
Ushas went away from her broken chariot, fearing lest the hero should do her violence.
Here vríshan is clearly meant for Indra, who, as we learn from the preceding verse, was trying to conquer Ushas, as Apollo did Daphne; and it should be observed that the word itself, by which Indra is here designated, is particularly appropriate to the circumstances.
I, 103, 6. bhû´ri-karmane vrishabhâ´ya vríshne satyá-sushmâya sunavâma sómam, yáh â-drítya paripanthî´-iva sû´rah áyagvanah vi-bhágan éti védah.
Let us pour out the Soma for the strong bull, the performer of many exploits, whose strength is true, the hero who, watching like a footpad, comes to us dividing the wealth of the infidel.
Here it is clear again from the context that Indra only can be meant.
But in other passages this is more doubtful:
III, 61, 7. ritásya budhné ushásâm ishanyán vríshâ mahî´ (íti) ródasî (íti) â´ vivesa.
The hero in the depth of the heaven, yearning for the dawns, has entered the great sky and the earth.
The hero who yearns for the dawns, is generally Indra; here, however, considering that Agni is mentioned in the preceding verse, it is more likely that this god, as the light of the morning, may have been meant by the poet. That Agni, too, may be called vríshan, without any other epithet to show that he is meant rather than any other god, is clear from such passages as,
VI, 3, 7. vríshâ ruksháh óshadhîshu nûnot.
He the wild hero shouted among the plants.
In VII, 60, 9, vrishanau, the dual, is meant for Mitra and Varuna; in the next verse, vrishanah, the plural, must mean the same gods and their companions.
That Soma is called simply vríshan, not only in the ninth Mandala, but elsewhere, too, we see from such passages as,
III, 43, 7. índra píba vrísha-dhûtasya vríshnah (â´ yám te syenáh usaté gabhâ´ra), yásya máde kyaváyasi prá, krishtî´h yásya máde ápa gotrâ´ vavártha.
Indra drink of the male (the strong Soma), bruised by the males (the heavy stones), inspirited by whom thou makest the people fall down, inspirited by whom thou hast opened the stables.
Here Sâyana, too, sees rightly that 'the male bruised by the males' is the Soma-plant, which, in order to yield the intoxicating juice, has to be bruised by stones, which stones are again likened to two males. But unless the words, enclosed in brackets, had stood in the text, words which clearly point to Soma, I doubt whether Sâyana would have so readily admitted the definite meaning of vríshan as Soma.
I, 109, 3. mâ´ khedma rasmî´n íti nâ´dhamânâh pitrînâ´m saktî´h anu-yákkhamânâh, indrâgní-bhyâm kám vríshanah madanti tâ´ hí ádrî (íti) dhishánâyâh upá-sthe.
We pray, let us not break the cords (which, by means of the sacrifices offered by each generation of our forefathers, unite us with the gods); we strive after the powers of our fathers. The Somas rejoice for Indra and Agni; for the two stones are in the lap of the vessel.
First, as to the construction, the fact that participles are thus used as finite verbs, and particularly when the subject changes in the next sentence, is proved by other passages,
such as II, 11, 4. The sense is that the new generation does not break the sacrificial succession, but offers Soma, like their fathers. The Soma-plants are ready, and, when pressed by two stones, their juice flows into the Soma-vessel. There may be a double entendre in dhishánâyâh upá-sthe, which Sanskrit scholars will easily perceive.
When vríshan is thus used by itself, we must be chiefly guided by the adjectives or other indications before we determine on the most plausible translation. Thus we read:
I, 55, 4. sáh ít váne namasyú-bhih vakasyate kâ´ru gáneshu pra-bruvânáh indriyám, vríshâ khánduh bhavati haryatáh vríshâ kshémena dhénâm maghá-vâ yát ínvati.
In the first verse the subject may be Indra or Soma: 'He alone is praised by worshippers in the forest (or in the wooden vessel), he who shows forth among men his fair power.' But who is meant to be the subject of the next verse? Even Sâyana is doubtful. He translates first: 'The bounteous excites the man who wishes to sacrifice; when the sacrificer, the rich, by the protection of Indra, stirs up his voice.' But he allows an optional translation for the last sentences: when the powerful male, Indra, by his enduring mind reaches the praise offered by the sacrificer.'
According to these suggestions, Wilson translated: He (Indra) is the granter of their wishes (to those who solicit him); he is the encourager of those who desire to worship (him), when the wealthy offerer of oblations, enjoying his protection, recites his praise.
Benfey: The bull becomes friendly, the bull becomes desirable, when the sacrificer kindly advances praise.
Langlois: When the noble Maghavan receives the homage of our hymns, his heart is flattered, and he responds to the wishes of his servant by his gifts.
As far as I know, the adjective khándu does not occur again, and can therefore give us no hint. But haryatá, which is applied to vríshan in our verse, is the standing epithet of Soma. It means delicious, and occurs very frequently in the ninth Mandala. It is likewise applied. to Agni, Pûshan, the Haris, the thunderbolt, but wherever
it occurs our first thought is of Soma. Thus, without quoting from the Soma-Mandala, we read, X, 96, 1, haryatám mádam, the delicious draught, i. e. Soma.
X, 96, 9. pîtvâ´ mádasya haryatásya ándhasah, means having drunk of the draught of the delicious Soma.
VIII, 72, 18. padám haryatásya ni-dhânyâ´m, means the place where the delicious Soma resides.
III, 44, 1. haryatáh sómah.
II, 21, 1. bhara índrâya sómam yagatâ´ya haryatám.
Bring delicious Soma for the holy Indra.
I, 130, 2. mádâya haryatâ´ya te tuvíh-tamaya dhâ´yase.
That thou mayest drink the delicious and most powerful draught, i. e. the Soma.
If, then, we know that vríshan by itself is used in the sense of Soma, haryatá vríshan can hardly be anything else. Vakasyate also is peculiar to Soma in the sense of murmuring, or as it were talking, .and never occurs as a passive. I therefore should prefer to assign the whole verse to Soma, and translate: He indeed, when in the wooden vessel, talks with his worshippers, proclaiming his fair power among men; the strong Soma is pleasing, the strong Soma is delicious, when the sacrificer safely brings the cow, i. e. the milk to be mixed with the Soma.
That Indra was thirsting for Soma had been said in the second verse, and he is again called the Soma-drinker in the seventh verse. A verse dedicated to Soma therefore seems to come in quite naturally, though the Anukramanî does not sanction it.
That the Maruts are called vríshan, without further explanations, will appear from the following passages:
I, 85, 12. rayím nah dhatta vrishanah su-vî´ram.
Give us wealth, ye heroes, consisting of good offspring.
VIII, 96, 14. íshyâmi vah vrishanah yúdhyata âgaú.
I wish for you, heroes (Maruts), fight in the race!
In all the passages which we have hitherto examined, vríshan was always applied to living beings, whether animals, men, or gods. But as, in Greek, ἄρσην means at last simply strong, and is applied, for instance, to the
crash of the sea, κτύπος ἄρσην πόντου, so in the Veda vríshan is applied to the roaring of the storms and similar objects.
V, 87, 5. svanáh vríshâ.
Your powerful sound (O Maruts).
X, 47, 1. gagribhmá te dákshinam indra hástam vasuyávah vasu-pate vásûnâm, vidmá hí tvâ gó-patim sûra gónâm asmábhyam kitrám vríshanam rayím dâh.
We have taken thy right hand, O Indra, wishing for treasures, treasurer of treasures, for we know thee, O hero, to be the lord of cattle; give us bright and strong wealth.
Should kitrá here refer to treasures, and vríshan to cattle?
X, 89, 9. ní amítreshu vadhám indra túmram vríshan vríshanam arushám sisîhi.
Whet, O hero, the heavy strong red weapon against the enemies.
The long â in vríshanam is certainly startling, but it occurs once more, IX, 34, 3, where there can be no doubt that it is the accusative of vríshan. Professor Roth takes vríshan here in the sense of bull (s. v. tumra), but he does not translate the whole passage.
III, 29, 9. krinóta dhûmám vríshanam sakhâyah.
Make a mighty smoke, O friends!
Strength itself is called vríshan, if I am right in translating the phrase vríshanam súshmam by manly strength. It occurs,
IV, 24, 7. tásmin dadhat vríshanam súshmam índrah.
Indra may give to him manly strength.
VI, 19, 8. â´ nah bhara vríshanam súshmam indra.
Bring to us, O Indra, manly strength.
VII, 24, 4. asmé (íti) dádhat vríshanam súshmam indra.
Giving to us, O Indra, manly strength.
See also VI, 19, 9, súshmah vrishabháh, used in the same sense.
VII. Vríshan, general and empty term of praise.
This constant play on the word vríshan, which we have observed in the passages hitherto examined, and which give by no means a full idea of the real frequency of its
occurrence in the Veda, has evidently had its influence on the Vedic Rishis, who occasionally seem to delight in the most silly and unmeaning repetitions of this word, and its compounds and derivatives. Here no language can supply any adequate translation; for though we may translate words which express thoughts, it is useless to attempt to render mere idle play with words. I shall give a few instances:
I, 177, 3. â´ tishtha rátham vríshanam vríshâ te sutáh sómah pári-siktâ mádhûni, yuktvâ´ vrísha-bhyâm vrishabha kshitînâ´m hári-bhyâm yâhi pra-vátâ úpa madrík.
Mount the strong car, the strong Soma is poured out for thee, sweets are sprinkled round; come down towards us, thou bull of men, with the strong bays, having yoked them.
But this is nothing yet compared to other passages, when the poet cannot get enough of vríshan and vrishabhá.
II, 16, 6. vríshâ te vágrah utá te vríshâ ráthah vríshanâ hárî (íti) vrishabhâ´ni â´yudhâ, vríshnah mádasya vrishabha tvám îsishe indra sómasya vrishabhásya tripnuhi.
Thy thunderbolt is strong, and thy car is strong, strong are the bays, the weapons are powerful, thou, bull, art lord of the strong draught, Indra rejoice in the powerful Soma!
V, 36, 5. vríshâ tvâ vríshanam vardhatu dyaúh vríshâ vrísha-bhyâm vahase hári-bhyâm, sáh nah vríshâ vrísharathah su-sipra vrísha-krato (iti) vríshâ vagrin bháre dhâh.
May the strong sky increase thee, the strong; a strong one thou art, carried by two strong bays; do thou who art strong, with a strong car, O thou of strong might, strong holder of the thunderbolt, keep us in battle!
V, 40, 2-3. vríshâ grâ´vâ vríshâ mádah vríshâ sómah ayám sutáh, vríshan indra vrísha-bhih vritrahan-tama, vríshâ tvâ vríshanam huve.
The stone is strong, the draught is strong, this Soma that has been poured out is strong, O thou strong Indra, who killest Vritra with the strong ones (the Maruts), I, the strong, call thee, the strong.
VIII, 13, 31-33. vríshâ ayám indra te ráthah utó (íti) te
vríshanâ hárî (íti), vríshâ tvám sata-krato (íti) vríshâ hávah. vríshâ grâ´vâ vríshâ mádah vríshâ sómah ayám sutáh, vríshâ yagñáh yám ínvasi vríshâ hávah. vríshâ tvâ vríshanam huve vágrin kitrâ´bhih ûtí-bhih, vavántha hí práti-stutim vríshâ hávah.
This thy car is strong, O Indra, and thy bays are strong; thou art strong, O omnipotent, our call is strong. The stone is strong, the draught is strong, the Soma is strong, which is here poured out; the sacrifice which thou orderest is strong, our call is strong. I, the strong, call thee, the strong, thou holder of the thunderbolt, with manifold blessings; for thou hast desired our praise; our call is strong.
There are other passages of the same kind, but they are too tedious to be here repeated. The commentator, throughout, gives to each vríshan its full meaning either of showering down or bounteous, or male or-bull; but a word which can thus be used at random has clearly lost its definite power, and cannot call forth any definite ideas in the mind of the listener. It cannot be denied that here and there the original meaning of vríshan would be appropriate even where the poet is only pouring out a stream of majestic sound, but we are not called upon to impart sense to what are verba et praeterquam nihil. When we read, I, 122, 3, vâ´tah apâ´m vrishan-vân, we are justified, no doubt, in translating, 'the wind who pours forth water;' and X, 93, 5, apâ´m vrishan-vasû (íti) sû´ryâmâ´sâ, means 'Sun and Moon, givers of water.' But even in some passages where vríshan is followed by the word vrish, it is curious to observe that vrish is not necessarily used in the sense of raining or pouring forth, but rather in the sense of drinking.
VI, 68, 11. índrâvarunâ mádhumat-tamasya vríshnah sómasya vrishanâ a â´ vrishethâm.
Indra and Varuna, you strong ones, may you drink of the sweetest strong Soma.
That â-vrish means to drink or to eat, was known to Sâyana and to the author of the Satapatha-brâhmana, who paraphrases â vrishâyadhvam by asnîta, eat.
The same phrase occurs I, 108, 3.
I, 104, 9. uru-vyákâh gatháre â´ vrishasva.
Thou of vast extent, drink (the Soma) in thy stomach.
The same phrase occurs X, 96, 13.
VIII, 61, 3. â´ vrishasva—sutásya indra ándhasah.
Drink, Indra, of the Soma that is poured out.
In conclusion, a few passages may be pointed out in which vríshan seems to be the proper name of a pious worshipper:
I, 36, 10. yám tvâ devâ´sah mánave dadhúh ihá yágishtham havya-vâhana, yám kânvah médhya-atithih dhanasprítam yám vríshâ yám upa-stutáh.
Thee, O Agni, whom the gods placed here for man, the most worthy of worship, O carrier of oblations, thee whom Kanva, thee whom Medhyâtithi placed, as the giver of wealth, thee whom Vrishan placed and Upastuta.
Here the commentator takes Vrishan as Indra, but this would break the symmetry of the sentence. That Upastutáh is here to be taken as a proper name, as Upastuta, the son of Vrishtihavya, is clear from verse 17:
agníh pra âvat mitrâ´ utá médhya-atithim agníh sâtâ´ upastutám.
Agni protected also the two friends, Medhyâtithi and Upastuta, in battle.
The fact is that whenever upastutá has the accent on the last syllable, it is intended as a proper name, while, if used as a participle, in the sense of praised, it has the accent on the first.
VIII, 5, 25. yáthâ kit kánvam â´vatam priyá-medham upa-stutám.
As you have protected Kanva, Priyamedha, Upastutá. Cf. I, 112, 15.
VIII, 103, 8. prá mámhishthâya gâyata—úpa-stutâsah agnáye (accent of the vocative).
Sing, O Upastutás, to the worthiest, to Agni!
X, 115, 9. íti tvâ agne vrishti-hávyasya putrâ´h upastutâ´sah ríshayah avokan.
By these names, O Agni, did the sons of Vrishtihavya, the Upastutás, the Rishis, speak to you.
Vrishan occurs once more as a proper name in VI, 16, 14 and 15:
tám ûm (íti) tvâ dadhyáṅ ríshih putráh îdhe átharvanah, vritra-hánam puram-darám.
tám ûm (íti) tvâ pâthyáh vríshâ sám îdhe dasyuhántamam, dhanam-gayám ráne-rane.
Thee, O Agni, did Dadhyak kindle, the Rishi, the son of Atharvan, thee the killer of Vritra, the destroyer of towns;
Thee, O Agni, did Vrishan Pâthya kindle, thee the best killer of enemies, the conqueror of wealth in every battle.
Here the context can leave no doubt that Dadhyak and Vrishan were both intended as proper names. Yet as early as the composition of the Satapatha-brâhmana, this was entirely misunderstood. Dadhyak, the son of Atharvan, is explained as speech, Vrishan Pâthya as mind (Sat. Br. VI, 3, 3, 4). On this Mahidhara, in his remarks on Vâg. Samh. XI, 34, improves still further. For though he allows his personality to Dadhyak, the son of Atharvan, he says that Pâthya comes from pathin, path, and means he who moves on the right path; or it comes from pâthas, which means sky, and is here used in the sense of the sky of the heart. He then takes vrishan as mind, and translates the mind of the heart. Such is a small chapter in the history of the rise and fall of the Indian mind!
151:a The dual vríshanau occurs only when the next word begins with a vowel. Before an initial a, â, i, the au is always changed into âv in the Samhitâ (I, 108, 7-12; 116, 21; 117, 19; 153, 2; 157, 5; 158, 1; 180, 7; VII, 61, 5). Before u the preceding au becomes â in the Samhitâ, but the Pada gives au, in order to show that no Sandhi can take place between the two vowels (VII, 60, 9; p. 152 X, 66, 7). Before consonants the dual always ends in â, both in the Samhitâ and Pada. But there are a few passages where the final â occurs before initial vowels, and where the two vowels are allowed to form one syllable. In four passages this happens before an initial â (I, 108, 3; VI, 68, 11; I, 177, 1; II, 16, 5). Once, and once only, it happens before u, in VIII, 22, 12.