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


1. The twelfth subject is this, that, when any one dies, an order is necessary 1 that how much soever scantier 2 clothing they are able to make a beginning of, the better they act. 2. Beside (illâ) 3 something become old and washed, anything new is not proper for the purpose that they may let it go upon a dead body.

3. For in the commentary of the Vendîdâd 4 it asserts that, if they shall pass on to a dead body as much as a woman's spindle makes for a single thread, with the exception of that which is unavoidable, for every single thread a black snake hangs, in that other world, on to the liver of that person who has made a beginning of the clothing. 4. Likewise, that dead person becomes his antagonist (‘haʓ̣m), and hangs similarly 5 upon his skirt, and speaks thus: 'This clothing, which thou hast put on my body, devours me, having become worms and noxious creatures. 5. My name was put upon a sacred cake 6, the fourth day, with a Yast, so that there

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might be alike a benefit therefrom for my soul, and it might be alike unnecessary for thee to bear this torment (’haDHâb).' 6. Owing to that, many sorrows come to that person, and he has no advantage from it. 7. Therefore, it is necessary to act with caution (i’htiyât), so that, how much soever the clothing be scantier 1, they may make a beginning of it.

8. And as many as shall be able to walk after the bier (tâbût) and corpse shall walk. 9. Because every step that they go after a corpse is a good work of three hundred stîrs 2; and every stîr is four dirhams, in such manner that three hundred stîrs are a thousand and two hundred dirhams 3. 10. For every single step there is thus much good work.


272:1 B29 has 'it is necessary to utter two orders.'

272:2 Lp, B29 have 'older.' Compare Sls. XII, 4.

272:3 Lp, B29 have 'that is.'

272:4 Pahl. Vend. V, 170-177, where, however, the penalty here mentioned is not now extant.

272:5 Lp, B29 emit similarly.

272:6 Referring to the cake consecrated to the righteous guardian spirit on the fourth day after death (see Chap. LXXXVII, 2, Sls. III, 32 n, XVII, 5 n).

273:1 Lp, B29, J15 have 'older.'

273:2 An amount which would counterbalance a Tanâvar or Tanâpûhar sin (see Sls. I, 2).

273:3 B29 omits these fourteen words.

Next: Chapter XIII