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Pahlavi Texts, Part III (SBE24), E.W. West, tr. [1885], at


1. The eleventh subject is this, that it is necessary to maintain the fire-place 3 properly, and to keep watch 4, so that the fire shall not die out, and that nothing polluted and impure shall attain to the fire; and it is necessary to make a menstruous woman avoid being within three steps of it.

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2. Because every time that they maintain a fire properly, which is within a dwelling, every fire which is in the earth of seven regions becomes pleased with those persons, and, when they ask a favour, or beg a necessity (‘hâgat), it becomes quickly operative. 3. And every time that one does not maintain it properly, every fire which is in the earth of seven regions receives injury from that person, and the necessity he begs does not become operative. 4. If any one does not maintain the fire-place properly, if he gives a hundred dînârs 1 to the fire Gusasp 2 there is no acceptance of it, and that sin does not depart from him.

5. For it is declared in revelation 3, that the creator Hôrmazd has given sovereignty in heaven to Ardibahis4, the archangel, and has spoken thus: 'As to every one with whom thou art not pleased, do not let him escape into heaven.' 6. And this is also declared in revelation, that, every time that they do not maintain the fire properly, pregnancy becomes scarcer for the women, fewer male children are born, and honour (‘hurmat) in the vicinity of the king becomes less for the men, and there is no approbation (qabûl) of their words.

7. For every single fire which dies out in a dwelling a loss of three dirhams and two dângs 5 falls

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on the property of that person, or it becomes the loss of this dwelling, or it does not reach him from the place whence wealth comes to him.


270:3 Or, perhaps, 'the house-fire.'

270:4 B29 omits these four words.

271:1 The dînâr is a gold coin which, if it contained a dirham weight of gold, and if the dirham were 63 grains (see Dd. LII, 1 n), was equal to about half-a-sovereign.

271:2 One of the three most sacred fires (see Bd. XVII, 7).

271:3 Lp, B29 have 'in the good religion.'

271:4 Av. asha vahista, 'perfect rectitude,' who is supposed to protect, fire (see Bd. I, 26, Sls. XV, 12).

271:5 That is, three dirhams and a half in silver, or nearly one rupee and a quarter.

Next: Chapter XII