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


1. Soshyantîm adbhir abhyukshaty egatu dasamâsya iti (Vâg. Samh. VIII, 28) prâg yasyai to iti (ibid. 29).

2 Athâvarâvapatanam, avaitu prisni sevalam sune garâyv attave, naiva mâmsena pîvari na kasmims kanâyatam ava garâyu padyatâm iti.

3. When the boy is born, he performs for him, before the navel-string is cut off, the medhâganana

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[paragraph continues] (production of intelligence) and the âyushya (rite for procuring long life).

4. (The medhâganana is performed in the following way:) With his fourth finger and with (an instrument of) gold he gives (to the child) honey and ghee, or ghee (alone), to eat with (the formulas), 'Bhûh I put into thee; bhuvah I put into thee; svah I put into thee. Bhûr bhuvah svah everything I put into thee.'

5. He then performs the âyushya.

6. Near his navel or his right ear he murmurs: 'Agni is long-lived; through the trees he is long-lived. By that long life I make thee long-lived.

'Soma is long-lived; through the herbs he is, &c.

'The Brahman is long-lived; through the Brâhmanas it is, &c.

'The gods are long-lived; through ambrosia (amrita) they are, &c.

'The Rishis are long-lived; through their observances they are, &c.

'The Fathers are long-lived; through the Svadhâ oblations (or oblations made to the Manes) they are, &c.

'Sacrifice is long-lived; through sacrificial fee it is, &c.

'The ocean is long-lived; through the rivers it is long-lived. By that long life I make thee long-lived;'

7. And three times the verse, 'The threefold age' (Vâg. Samh. III, 62).

8. If he desires, 'May he live his full term of

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life,' he should touch him with the Vâtsapra hymn (Vâg. Samh. XII, 18-29).

9. From the Anuvâka beginning with 'From heaven' (XII, 18 seqq.) he omits the last Rik (XII, 29).

10. Having placed five Brâhmanas towards the (five) regions, he should say to them, 'Breathe ye upon this (child).'

11 11. The (Brâhmana placed) to the east should say, Up-breathing!

12. The one to the south, 'Back-breathing!'

13. The one to the west, 'Down-breathing!'

14. The one to the north, 'Out-breathing!'

15. The fifth one, looking upwards, should say, 'On-breathing!'

16. Or (the father) may do that himself, going round (his child), if he can find no (Brâhmanas).

17 17. He recites over the place at which (the child) is born: 'I know, O earth, thy heart that dwells in heaven, in the moon. That I know; may it know me. May we see a hundred autumns; may we live a hundred autumns; may we hear a hundred autumns.'

18 18. He then touches him with (the verse), 'Be a stone, be an axe, be imperishable gold. Thou indeed art the Self called son; thus live a hundred autumns.'

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19 19. He then recites over his mother (the verse), 'Thou art Idâ, the daughter of Mitra and Varuna; thou strong woman hast born a strong son. Be thou blessed with strong children, thou who hast blessed us with a strong son.'

20. He then washes her right breast, and gives it to the child with (the verse), 'This breast' (Vâg. Samh. XVII, 87);

21 21. The left (breast) with (the verse), 'Thy breast which' (ibid. XXXVIII, 5)—with these two (verses).

22. He puts down a pot of water near her head with (the verse), 'O waters, you watch with the gods. As you watch with the gods, thus watch over this mother who is confined, and her child.'

23 23. Having established near the door the fire that has been kept from (the wife's) confinement, he throws into that fire at the time of the morning and evening twilight, until (the mother) gets up (from childbed), mustard seeds mixed with rice chaff (pronouncing the following names of demons and goblins): 'May Sanda and Marka, Upavîra, Saundikeya, Ulûkhala, Malimluka, Dronâsa, Kyavana vanish hence. Svâhâ!

'May Âlikhat, Animisha, Kimvadanta, Upasruti, Haryaksha, Kumbhin, Satru, Pâtrapâni, Nrimani, Hantrîmukha, Sarshapâruna, Kyavana vanish hence. Svâhâ!'

24 24. If (the demon bringing disease) Kumâra attacks the boy, the father covers him with a net

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or with an upper garment, takes him on his lap, and murmurs: Kûrkura, Sukûrkura, Kûrkura, who holds fast children. Ket! ket! doggy! let him loose. Reverence be to thee, the Sîsara, barker, bender.

'That is true that the gods have given a boon to thee. Hast thou then chosen even this boy?

'Ket! ket! doggy! let him loose. Reverence be to thee, the Sîsara, barker, bender.

'That is true that (the divine she-dog) Saramâ is thy mother, Sîsara thy father, the black and the speckled (two dogs of Yama) thy brothers.

'Ket! ket! doggy! let him loose. Reverence be to thee, the Sîsara, barker, bender.'

25. He then touches (the boy) with (the words), 'He does not suffer, he does not cry, he is not stiff, he is not sick, when we speak to him and when we touch him.'


293:1 16, 1. Satapatha Brâhmana XIV, 9, 4, 22.

293:2 Atharva-veda I, II, 4.

294:4 Comp. Satapatha Brâhmana XIV, 9, 4, 23 seqq. (Brihad Âranyaka VI, 4, 24 seqq.; S.B.E., XV, 222 seq.). The text has anâmikayâ suvarnântarhitayâ, which literally is: with the nameless (or fourth) finger, between which (and the food) gold has been put.

295:11 11 seqq. In translating the technical terms for the different kinds of breath, I adopt the expressions chosen by Professor Max Müller, S.B.E., XV, 94. As to the whole rite, comp. Satap. Br. XI, 8, 3, 6.

295:17 Comp. above, I, 11, 9. The comparison of the parallel Mantra leaves scarcely any doubt that veda (the first word of the verse) is the first, not the third person, and bhûmi the vocative case. Compare the vocative darvi of the Vâg. Samhitâ, while the Atharva-veda has darve. Lanman, Noun-Inflection, p. 390.

295:18 Satapatha Brâhmana XIV, 9, 4, 26; Âsvalâyana I, 15, 3.

296:19 Satapatha Brâhmana l.l. § 27. Comp. Professor Max Müller's note, S.B.E., XV, 223 seq.

296:21 Satapatha Brâhmana l.1. § 28.

296:23 On the sûtikâgni, comp. Satap. Br. l.l. § 23; Sâṅkhâyana-Grihya I, 25, 4, &c.

296:24 Kûrkura seems to me, and this is also Professor Stenzler's p. 297 opinion, identical with kurkura, kukkura ('dog'). The Petersburg Dictionary explains it, 'Name eines die Kinder bedrohenden Dämons (vielleicht eine Personification des Hustens).'

Next: I, 17