Vedic Hymns, Part II (SBE46), by Hermann Oldenberg , at sacred-texts.com
1. Increase Gâtavedas by your sacrifice 1, worship Agni for ever with your offering and your prayer 2—him who has been kindled, the receiver of good offerings, the solar hero, the heavenly Hotri, the charioteer 3 in our settlements 4.
2. For thee Nights and Dawns have been lowing, O Agni, as milch-cows in the folds for their calf 1. A steward 2, as it were, of Heaven, thou shinest on the human tribes, O bountiful one, on continuous nights 3.
3. The gods have set him to work, as a steward 1 of Heaven and Earth, endowed with wonderful power, at the bottom of the air: Agni who is well known like a chariot 2, brightly shining, deserving of praise like Mitra (or, like a friend) in (human) dwellings.
4. They have established him who grows in the air, in his house, the serpent 1 with beautiful splendour like gold 2, the winged (son?) of Prisni 3 who lights up with his eyes both tribes (of gods and of men), like a guardian of the way (?) 4.
5. May he, the Hotri, encompass the whole sacrifice. Men strive towards him with offerings and prayer. (Agni) with golden jaws 1, hurrying around in the growing (plants) 2, lighted up the two worlds like the Sky with the stars.
6. Thus mayst thou, being brightly kindled for our welfare or being exhausted (?) 1, shine upon us with thy wealth. Carry hither to us the two
worlds for the sake of happiness, Agni, O god, that they may eagerly partake 2 of the offering of the man (or, of Manus).
7. Give us, Agni, mighty, give us thousandfold (gifts). Open strength for us like a door 1 for the sake of glory. Make Heaven and Earth inclined towards us through (our) spell. Make the Dawns shine like the brilliant Sun.
8. Being kindled after dawns and nights may he shine with his red light like the sun, Agni, being a good sacrificer with the help of the offerings of man (or, of Manus) 1, the king of the clans, and the welcome guest of Âyu.
9. Thus, O Agni, ancient one, our human prayer has prospered among the immortals who dwell in the great heaven. May the cow 1 when milked, yield 2 freely to the singer in our settlements hundredfold (wealth) of all kinds.
10. May we, O Agni, (attain) bliss in valiant men by our racers, or may we shine over (all) people by our sacred spells. May our unconquerable lustre beam on high like the sun over the fivefold dwellings (of the five peoples).
11. Be thou, O mighty one, worthy of praise among us, (thou) from whom the well-born, liberal (lords) have sought nourishment 1, unto whom the strong ones, O Agni, go for sacrifice, who shinest in thy abode among (the worshipper's) own kith.
12. May we both, O Gâtavedas, the praisers and the liberal (lords), be in thy protection, O Agni. Help us to good, resplendent, abundant wealth which is accompanied by offspring, by good progeny.
13 = II, 1, 16.
The same Rishi and metre.—Verse 7 = TS. II, 2, 12, 6; MS. IV, 12, 2.
Note 1. In this Pâda one syllable is wanting. It may be thought that the first word should be pronounced iagñéna. For supplying the missing syllable by conjecture there would, however, be many ways. Comp. also H. O., Hymnen des Rig-veda, I, p. 79.
Note 2. Tánâ girâ´: comp. I. 38, 13 (vol. xxxii, p. 82).
Note 3. Dhûh-sádam. The exact meaning is, 'who occupies a decisive position.'
Note 4. Vrigáneshu: comp. I, 60, 3, note 2.
Note 1. Comp. VIII, 88, 1. abhí vatsám ná svásareshu dhenávah índram gîrbhíh navâmahe.
Note 2. See I, 58, 7, note 1.
Note 3. See Lanman, p. 482; Gaedicke, p. 89. 'During continuous nights.' M. M.
Note 1. See I, 58, 7, note 1.
Note 2. Cf. VIII, 84, 1. rátham ná védyam.
Note 1. I follow the conjecture of Böhtlingk-Roth, who propose to read hvârám. Comp. Atharva-veda IV, I, 2 (Âsvalâyana Srautasûtra IV, 6, 3; Sâṅkhâyana Srautasûtra V, 9, 7). surúkam hvârám. The meaning of the word is conjectural; comp. I, 141, 7, note 1. If we read hvâré, the translation could be 'brilliant like gold, in a hidden place.' (M. M.)
Note 2. Comp. Pischel, Vedische Studien, I, 52.
Note 3. Or, the winged (bird) of Prisni? No other passages which make Agni the son (or the bird) of Prisni are known to me.
Note 4. The accent of pâthás points to a genitive, dependent on pâyúm, of a word which is, however, different from pâ´thas. Grassmann thinks that pâthás is a lengthening for pathás, but Lanman (Noun-Inflection, 470) is quite right in observing that this is hard to believe in the first syllable of a Pâda. Should we not correct the text and read patháh (gen. sing. governed by pâyúm)? The reading pâtháh may be due to the influence of the neighbourhood of pâyúm.
Note 1. See vol. xxxii, p. 301.
Note 2. Comp. X, 92, I. súshkâsu hárinîshu gárbhurat.
Note 1. Ludwig translates sam-dadasvâ´n: 'zum heile [dich selber] aufreibend;' Grassmann, 'oder seist erloschen du;' Gaedicke (p. 89), 'and wenn du verlöschest;' Griffith, 'a liberal giver;' Neisser (Bezzenberger's Beitr. XIX, 286), 'deine Kunst zusammennehmend.' Sâyana says, 'samdadasvân samyak prayakkhan.' Prof. Max Müller suggests, 'being a liberal benefactor.'
Note 2. There was no reason for correcting devá-vîtaye as Ludwig once proposed. He has himself abandoned this conjecture.
Note 1. As to this metaphor ('opening' strength or the like), comp. VIII, 5, 21. utá nah divyâ´h íshah … ápa dvâ´râiva varshathah, and the passages collected by Dr. Hirzel, Gleichnisse and Metaphern im Rig-veda (Leipzig, 1890), 103.
Note 1. The third Pâda is repeated in X, 11, 5.
Note 1. The milch-cow of course is the prayer.
Note 2. Isháni seems to be an infinitive like parsháni nesháni tarîsháni (Delbrück, Altindisches Verbum, 227; Neisser, Bezzenberger's Beiträge, XX, 43). I believe it to come from the root ish, 'to incite.' As to the syntactical peculiarities of these infinitives, comp. Delbrück, Altindische Syntax, 416.
Note 1. Ishay is a denominative from ísh, as ûrgay is derived from û´rg (comp. Âsvalâyana Srautasûtra V, 7, 3).