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

p. 390


1. The Yathâ-ahû-vairyô 1 formulas that are necessary in each place, and how they are to be spoken in performing anything 2.

2. One by him who goes forth to an assembly, or before grandees and chieftains, or on any business; or when he goes to ask for what he wants (val khvahîsnŏ); also when he quits any business; in each of these situations he is to say only one formula, so that his business may proceed more promptly 3.

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3. That a blessing (âfrînô) may be more benedictory, for this reason one utters two formulas; for there are two kinds of blessing, one is that which is in the thoughts 1, and one is that which is in words.

4. Four are for coming out more thankfully when at a season-festival 2.

5. Five by him who goes to atone for sin, in order to expel the fiend; because it is necessary to undergo punishment by the decision (dastôbarîh) of these five persons, the house-ruler, the village-ruler, the tribe-ruler 3, the province-ruler, and the supreme Zaratûst; and five Ashem-vohûs 4 are to be uttered by him at the end.

6. Six by him who goes to seek power, and to battle, so that he may be more successful.

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7. Seven by him who goes to perform the worship of God (yazdân), so that the archangels may come more forward 1 at the worship.

8. Eight by him who goes to perform the ceremonial of the righteous guardian spirit.

9. Nine by him who goes to sow corn; these he utters for this reason, because the corn will ripen (rasêd) in nine months, and so that the corn may come forward he will make the mischief of the noxious creatures less 2.

10. Ten by him who goes to seek a wife, so that the presents may be favourable for the purpose. 11. Ten by him who wishes to allow the male access to beasts of burden and cattle, so that it may be more procreative 3.

12. Eleven by him who goes to the lofty mountains, so that the glory of mountains and hills may bless him and be friendly 4.

13. Twelve by him who goes to the low districts, so that the glory of that country and district may bless him and be friendly 5.

14. Thirteen by him who shall become pathless; at that same place he shall utter them; or by him

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who shall pass over a bridge and a river, so that the spirit of that water may bless him 1; because the Yathâ-ahû-vairyô is greater and more successful than everything in the Avesta as to all rivers, all wholesomeness, and all protection.

15. Religion is as connected with the Yathâ-ahû-vairyô as the hair is more connected with the glory of the face; any one, indeed, would dread (samâd) to separate hairiness and the glory of the face.


390:1 See Bund. I, 21.

390:2 It appears from the ninth book of the Dînkard, that the contents of this chapter are derived from the first fargard of the Sûdkar Nask (see B. Yt. I, 1, note). The account given by the Dînkard contains fewer details, but, so far as it goes, it is in accordance with our text, except that it seems to transfer the object of § 10 to § 12, and removes the objects of §§ 12, 13 one step onwards; it also adds 'going on a bridge' to § 2. The Persian Rivâyat of Bahman Pûngyah gives further details, as will be mentioned in the notes below.

390:3 The Persian Rivâyat adds to these occasions, when he goes on the water, or a river, or goes to borrow, or to ask repayment of a loan, or goes out from his house, or comes into it.

391:1 The words pavan mînisn are guessed, for this first clause is omitted by mistake in M6, and these two words are illegible in K20, except part of the last letter.

391:2 K20 substitutes for val, 'at,' the following mutilated phrase [. . . . aNhau khshapô kadarkâi pavan kadârkâî] madam vazlûnêddih-i; the portion in brackets being evidently a fragment from the Hâdôkht Srôsh Yt. 5 with Pahlavi translation (a passage which treats of the efficacy of reciting the Yathâ-ahû-vairyô). If this fragment be not merely a marginal gloss, which has crept into the text by mistake, we must translate the whole section as follows: 'Four are for the more thankful coming out of the liberality of a season-festival, when the passage, "on that day nor on that night comes there anything whatever on any one," goes on.' The Dînkard has merely: 'Four by him who is at the invocation of the chiefs of creation and the celebration of a season-festival.' The Persian Rivâyats omit the section altogether.

391:3 This person is omitted both in M6 and K20, but he is wanted to make up the five. This section is omitted by the Persian Rivâyats.

391:4 See Bund. XX, 2. These are to be recited after the punishment is over.

392:1 Or 'may arrive earlier;' there being seven archangels has suggested the number seven. This section and the next are omitted by the Persian Rivâyats.

392:2 The Persian Rivâyats add general cultivation, planting trees, and cohabitation with one's wife.

392:3 Instead of §§ 10, 11 the Persian Rivâyats have buying quadrupeds, and driving pegs into the ground for picketing them.

392:4 The Persian Rivâyats substitute conference with a maiden, seeking a wife, giving one's children in marriage, and obtaining anything from another.

392:5 The Persian Rivâyats add going up hills, mounting anything lofty, going on a bridge, and losing one's way.

393:1 The Persian Rivâyats substitute going to and entering a city or town; they also add twenty-one recitations on setting out on a journey, so that the angel Bahrâm may grant a safe arrival.

Next: Chapter XX