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The Grihya Sutras, Part 1 (SBE29), by Hermann Oldenberg, [1886], at


1. After one year the Kûdâkarman (i.e. the tonsure of the child's head);

2. Or in the third year;

3. In the fifth for a Kshatriya;

4. In the seventh for a Vaisya.

5. Having placed the fire (in the outer hall; see chap. 5, 2)—

6. And having filled vessels with rice and barley, sesamum seeds and beans,

7. And having put down northwards bull-dung and a layer of Kusa grass for receiving the hair, a mirror, fresh butter, and a razor of copper,

8. He pours cold water into warm with (the verse), 'Mix yourselves, ye holy ones, with your waves, ye honied ones, mixing milk with honey, ye lovely ones, for the obtaining of wealth.'

9. 'May the waters moisten thee for life, for old age and splendour. The threefold age of Gamadagni, Kasyapa's threefold age, the threefold age of

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[paragraph continues] Agastya, the threefold age that belongs to the gods, that threefold age I produce for thee! N.N.!'—with these words he sprinkles the right part of his hair three times with lukewarm water.

10. Having loosened the tangled locks, according to some (teachers), with a porcupine's quill,

11. And having anointed (his hair)with fresh butter,

12. He puts a young Kusa shoot among (the hairs) with the words, 'Herb, protect him!'

13. Having touched the hair and the Kusa shoot with the mirror,

14. He takes up the copper razor with the words, Sharpness art thou; the axe is thy father. Do no harm to him!'

15 15. With (the words), 'The razor with which in the beginning Savitar, the knowing one, has shaven the beard of king Varuna, and with which Dhâtar Brihaspati has shaven Indra's head, with that, ye Brâhmanas, shave this (head) to-day; blessed with long life, with old age be this man N.N.!' he cuts the tips of the hairs and the Kusa shoot.

16. In the same way a second time; in the same way a third time.

17. In the same way twice on the left side.

18. Under the armpits a sixth and a seventh time at the Godânakarman (ceremony of shaving the beard).

19. The Godânakarman is identical with the Kûdâkarman,

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20. (It is to be performed) in the sixteenth or in the eighteenth year.

21. At the third turn of shaving, however, he gives a cow and a garment that has not yet been washed.

22. Silently the rites (are performed) for girls.

23. To the north-east, in a place covered with herbs, or in the neighbourhood of water they bury the hairs in the earth.

24 24. To the barber the vessels of grain. To the barber the vessels of grain.


55:1 28, 1. Kûlâkarman literally means, the preparing of the lock or the locks (left when the rest of the hair is shaven).

56:15 The parallel texts show that instead of Brihaspatir we have to read Brihaspater, instead of adya, asya. So the correct translation would be, '. . . with what Dhâtar has shaven Brihaspati's and Indra's head, with that do ye Brâhmanas shave this head of this (child).'

57:24 See Sûtra 6.

Next: II, 1