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


1. As to that which is written 3, that it is declared in the Sakâdûm Nask 4, that the consecrated bull's

p. 310

urine, when it becomes fetid, is to be stirred up (barâ agârdŏînisnŏ), and they should not carry it forth so to the fire, so that the stench extends to the fire; because, if that stench extends to the fire, on account of the moisture and through carrying bodily refuse (hîgar) 1 on and forth to the fire, it overwhelms it; that is taught in like manner lest, and owing to what is said, it then seemed to one that the bodily refuse and pollution of fetid bull's urine is on account of the stench. 2. But it is proper to observe it more fully mindfully, perfectly completely, and with better understanding, because that which is said by it, that the carrying of bodily refuse forth to the fire overwhelms it, is not on account of the pollution of the bull's urine, but the proportion of the sin through this; so that it becomes the origin of as much sin for him as that pollution of the bull's urine; but the stench, on account of moisture, is like him even who shall bring clean and purified water into the fire, and thereby becomes sinful 2

p. 311

3. This, too, is a saying, that the proportion of the sin is mentioned not on account of the pollution of the bull's urine; it is said to be a counterpart even of that which is declared of the care of the flesh of the ass and pig, so that when they shall now carry unto the fire more than the proportion which is ordered, it overwhelms it through carrying bodily refuse forth to the fire, and even then that flesh, investigated as to purity, is mentioned as a supply for the season-festival 1.

4. The fetid bull's urine is itself likewise prepared, so that on this account it is ordered that it is to be stirred up, that so long as it is stirred up they may thereupon order the use of it; if then it is to be rendered quite useless, there is afterwards no necessity for stirring it. 5. The stirring is declared a purification as regards polluted things, where bodily refuse is only such that it is not endless, and so pure that it purifies even that of another.

6. When it is written of it itself, that it is thus declared in the Sakâdûm Nask, that consecrated bull's urine which is fetid is to be stirred up for the fire, it is afterwards declared that it is not speaking only of the bull's urine which is provided those three days 2; but that, too, which is old and consecrated,

p. 312

become fetid and is stirred again, when they keep it in use, is proper. 7. And that which the Sakâdûm has declared is, specially, that one of the high-priests has individually said: 'That stench is mentioned with reference to the occasion when a stench reaches it of a different kind from that which exists naturally in it.'


309:3 In the epistle to which he is replying.

309:4 This was the eighteenth of the lost books of the Mazda-worshippers (see Sls. X, 25, note). It was one of the seven law books, and treated of many legal matters. Among the contents of its first thirty sections the following items are mentioned by the Dînkard, p. 310 and one of these passages probably contained the statement quoted in our text:--'On carrying forth the holy-water and also the pot (dîgŏ-k) to the fire, that is, with purified and thoroughly-washed hands; and the sin of carrying them forth with unpurified and imperfectly-washed hands. On preserving the pot and the other things, whose use is with the fire, from defilement with bodily refuse; when, through want of care, defilement occurs, and any one shall carry it unawares to the fire, he who is careless overwhelms it thereby. . . . On lawfully warming the bull's urine on the fire, and the sin when it is not done lawfully.'

310:1 See Dd. XLVIII, 19, note.

310:2 The argument is that the urine being a consecrated liquid, its corruption is not contaminating (provided it be not occasioned by foreign matter, as alluded to in § 7); but if the stench be sufficient to extinguish or injure the fire, it is as sinful to expose the fire to its influence as it would be to injure the fire with holy-water.

311:1 So the damage to the fire is not occasioned by any impurity of the flesh of the ass or pig (which could be used for a sacred feast), but by the excessive quantity brought to it. The pig was formerly domesticated by the Parsis (see Sls. II, 58), but they have long since adopted the prejudices of the Hindus and Muhammadans as regards its uncleanness.

311:2 Referring probably to the times of the three washings, subsequent to the chief ceremony, which take place after the third, sixth, and ninth nights, respectively, (see Vend. IX, 136, 140, 144.)

Next: Chapter IX