Sacred Texts  Zoroastrianism  Index  Previous  Next 
Buy this Book at

Pahlavi Texts, Part II (SBE18), E.W. West, tr. [1882], at


1. As to the sixty-first question and reply, that which you ask is thus: How stand the shares in the inheritance (mîrâtŏ) of property among those of the good religion, and how is it necessary for them to stand therein?

2. The reply is this, that in the possession of wealth the wealth reaches higher or lower, just like water when it goes in a stream on a declivity, but when the passage shall be closed at the bottom it goes back on the running water (pûy-âvŏ), and then it does not go to its after-course 2.

p. 195

3. When there is nothing otherwise in the will and private 1, property goes to a wife or daughter 2 who is privileged; if one gives her anything by will then she does not obtain the share (dâs) pertaining to her 3. 4. Whenever 4 a share for a son is not provided by it, every one has so much and the wife who may be a privileged one has twice as much; and the share of that one of the sons 5, or even the wife of a son, who is blind in both eyes, or crippled 6 in both feet, or maimed in both his hands, is twice as much as that of one who is sound.

5. And it is needful that he who was in the father's guardianship shall remain in guardianship, as when a father or mother is decrepit and causing awe (kagarîn), or of a nurture different from that of the guardian 7--or a child of his brother or sister, or a father, or one 8 without nurture apart from him, is

p. 196

without a guardian--the ready guardianship of a capable man, and the shelter and nourishment that have become inadequate 1 are as indispensably forthcoming 2 from the possessors of wealth, of those who have taken the property, as that taking was indispensable 3.

6. If there be no son of that man, but there be a daughter or wife of his, and if some of the affairs 4 of the man are such as render a woman not suitable for the guardianship, it is necessary to appoint a family guardian; if there be, moreover, no wife or daughter of his it is necessary to appoint an adopted son. 7. This--that is, when it is necessary to appoint a family guardian and who is the fittest, and when it is necessary to appoint an adopted son and which is the fittest--is written in the chapters on the question 5.


194:2 This metaphor seems to mean that property, like water, always p. 195 descends until it meets with an obstruction to its downward progress in the shape of the nearest descendants, but, when once in their possession, it can again ascend (like the dammed stream) for the support of the survivors of an older generation (see § 5).

195:1 Or, it may be 'in the provisions (vûyagân) of the will;' or, by omitting two strokes, we have simply 'otherwise (hân) in the will.'

195:2 That is, they have a share of the property when there are other next of kin. M14 adds, 'and they should provide a living son as father and husband unless privileged,' referring to the necessity of adoption when there is no son and the wife is not a privileged one.

195:3 It being assumed that the will provides as much as is intended for any one whom it mentions.

195:4 Reading amat, 'when,' instead of mûn, 'who; which words are often confounded because their Pâz. equivalents are nearly identical.

195:5 M14 has 'daughters.'

195:6 Armêst probably means literally 'most immovable.'

195:7 M14 omits this last clause.

195:8 M14 has 'mother.'

196:1 Literally 'not issuing.'

196:2 M14 has 'are thus forthcoming'

196:3 M14 has 'or have become indispensable to it.'

196:4 Or, it may be 'dependents;' the text is merely va hatŏ min zak-î gabrâ.

196:5 See Chaps. LVI-LIX.

Next: Chapter LXIII