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Pahlavi Texts, Part I (SBE05), E.W. West, tr. [1880], at

p. 65


1. On the nature of the tree they call Gôkard 1 it says in revelation, that it was the first day when the tree they call Gôkard grew in the deep mud 2 within the wide-formed ocean; and it is necessary as a producer of the renovation of the universe, for they prepare its immortality therefrom. 2. The evil spirit has formed therein, among those which enter as opponents, a lizard 3 as an opponent in that deep water, so that it may injure the Hôm 4. 3. And for keeping away that lizard, Aûharmazd has created there ten Kar fish 5 which, at all times, continually circle around the Hôm, so that the head of one of those fish is continually towards the lizard. 4. And together with the lizard those fish are spiritually fed 6, that is, no food is necessary for them; and till the renovation of the universe they remain in contention. 5. There are places where that fish is

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written of as 'the Ariz 1 of the water;' as it says that the greatest of the creatures of Aûharmazd is that fish, and the greatest of those proceeding from the evil spirit is that lizard; with the jaws of their bodies, moreover, they snap in two whatever of the creatures of both spirits has entered between them, except that one fish which is the Vâs of Pankâsadvarân 2. 6. This, too, is said, that those fish are so serpent-like 3 in that deep water, they know the scratch (mâlisn) of a needle's point by which the water shall increase, or by which it is diminishing.

7. Regarding the Vâs of Pankâsadvarân it is declared that it moves within the wide-formed ocean, and its length is as much as what a man, while in a swift race, will walk from dawn till when the sun goes down; so much that it does not itself move 4 the length of the whole of its great body. 8. This, too, is said, that the creatures of the waters live also specially under its guardianship.

9. The tree of many seeds has grown amid the wide-formed ocean, and in its seed are all plants; some say it is the proper-curing, some the energetic-curing, some the all-curing 5.

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10. Between 1 these trees of such kinds 2 is formed the mountain with cavities, 9999 thousand myriads in number, each myriad being ten thousand. 11. Unto that mountain is given the protection of the waters, so that water streams forth from there, in the rivulet channels, to the land of the seven regions, as the source of all the sea-water in the land of the seven regions is from there 3.


65:1 A corruption of the Av. gaokerena of Vend. XX, 17, Aûharmazd Yt. 30, Haptân Yt. 3, Sîrôz, 7. In the old MSS. of the Bundahis the form gôkard occurs thrice, gôkarn once, and gogrv once.

65:2 Reading gil, 'mud.' Windischmann and Justi prefer gar, 'mountain,' and have 'depth of the mountain.'

65:3 That the writer of the Bundahis applies the term vazagh to a lizard, rather than a frog, appears from the 'log-like lizard's body' of Chap. III, 9.

65:4 That is, the Gôkard tree, which is the white Hôm (see Chap. XXVII, 4).

65:5 The Av. karô masyô of Vend. XIX, 140, Bahrâm Yt. 29, Dîn Yt. 7; see also Chap. XXIV, 13.

65:6 Windischmann and Justi prefer translating thus: 'Moreover, the lizard is the spiritual food of those fish;' but this can hardly be reconciled with the Pahlavi text.

66:1 See Chaps. XIV, 26, and XXIV, 13.

66:2 The Av. vâsîm yãm pankâsadvarãm of Yas. XLI, 27.

66:3 Transcribing the Pâz. mârâdu into Pahlavi we have mâr âyin, 'snake's manner.' Compare the text with Bahrâm Yt. 29.

66:4 K20 omits the words from 'walk' to 'move.'

66:5 This is the tree of the saêna or Simurgh, as described in Rashnu Yt. 17, and these three epithets are translations of its three titles, hubis, eredhwô-bis, and vîspô-bis. See also Chap. XXVII, 2, 3.

67:1 This must have been the original meaning of the Huz. dên (bên in the Sasanian inscriptions) before it was used as a synonym of Pâz. andar, 'within.' The mountain is between the white-Hôm tree and the tree of many seeds.

67:2 Transcribing the Pâz. oînoh into Pahlavi we have ân-gûnak, 'that kind;' or the word may be a miswriting of Pâz. ânô, 'there.'

67:3 This description of the mountain seems to identify it with the Aûsîndôm mountain of Chaps. XII, 6, and XIII, 5.

Next: Chapter XIX