Vedic Hymns, Part II (SBE46), by Hermann Oldenberg , at sacred-texts.com
1 1. Thou, O Agni, the flaming one, (art born) from out the Heavens 2, thou (art born) from out the Waters and the stone (the flint); thou (art born) from out the forests and the herbs; thou art born bright, O Lord of men, (as belonging) to men 3.
2 1. To thee, O Agni, belongs the Hotri's and the Potri's office exercised at the appointed season; to thee belongs the office of the Neshtri; thou art the Agnîdh 2 for the righteous. To thee belongs the office of the Prasâstri; thou actest as an Adhvaryu, and thou art the Brahman and the master of the house in our house 3.
3 1. Thou, O Agni, art Indra, a bull among (all) beings. Thou art the wide-ruling Vishnu, worthy of adoration. Thou art the Brahman, a gainer of wealth, O Brahmanaspati 2. Thou, O Vidhartri (i. e. who keepest asunder all things), art united with Puramdhi (or the Liberality of the gods) 3.
4. Thou, O Agni, art the king Varuna whose laws are firm; thou becomest Mitra, the wondrous one, worthy of being magnified. Thou art Aryaman, the lord of beings, whom I may enjoy 1. Thou, O god, art Amsa 2, desirous of distributing (goods) in the assembly 3.
5. Thou, O Agni, being Tvashtri, (grantest) to thy worshipper abundance in heroes. To thee, who art accompanied by the (divine) wives 1, who art great like Mitra, belongs relationship 2. Thou,
the quick inciter 3, givest abundance in horses. Thou, rich in wealth, art the host of men 4.
6. Thou, O Agni, art Rudra, the Asura of the high Heaven 1; thou, being the host of the Maruts, rulest over nourishment. Thou goest along with the flame-coloured Winds, bringing happiness to our home. Thou, being Pûshan, protectest thy worshippers by thy own might.
7. Thou, O Agni, art a giver of wealth to him who does service to thee 1; thou art the god Savitri, a bestower of treasures. Thou, being Bhaga, O lord of men, rulest over wealth. Thou art a protector in his house to him who has worshipped thee. 2.
8. Towards thee, in the house, the lord of the clan, O Agni, the clans strive, towards thee, the bounteous king. Thou with the beautiful face possessest all things. Thou art equal to thousands, to hundreds, to ten (of others).
9. Thee, O Agni, men (make) their father by their sacrifices 1; thee who shinest with thy body they (invite) to brotherhood by their (sacrificial) work. Thou becomest a son to him who has worshipped thee. As a kind friend thou protectest against attack.
10. Thou, O Agni, art Ribhu, to be adored when near. Thou rulest over strength 1, over wealth rich in food. Thou shinest 2, thou burnest for the sake of giving (wealth). Thou art a hewer 3, an expander of sacrifice.
11. Thou, Agni, O god, art Aditi to the worshipper. Thou, being Hotrâ Bhâratî 1, growest strong by prayer. Thou art Idâ, living a hundred winters, for (the increase of) ability. Thou, the killer of Vritra, O Lord of wealth, art Sarasvatî 2.
12. Thou, O Agni, well kept, art the highest vital power. In thy lovely colour and in thy appearance (dwell all) beauties. Thou art great strength that carries us forward. Thou art abundant wealth, extending on all sides.
13. The Âdityas have made thee, O Agni, their mouth; the bright ones have made thee their tongue, O Sage. The Râti-sâk gods (i. e. the 'bounteous' gods) accompany thee at the sacrifices. In thee the gods eat the offering which is offered to them.
14. In thee, O Agni, with (thy) mouth 1 all the guileless 2 immortal gods eat the offering which is offered to them. Through thee the mortals taste their drink. Thou hast been born, the bright one, as the child of the plants.
15 1. Thou art united with them and equal to them in strength, O well-born Agni, nay, thou surpassest them, O god, when thy power 2 has expanded here in its greatness over Heaven and Earth, over both worlds.
16. The liberal lords who pour out, O Agni, over thy praisers gifts at the head of which there are cows 1, the ornament of which are horses: lead both ourselves and them to welfare. May we speak loud in the assembly 2, rich in valiant men.
The Rishi is Gritsamada, the metre Gagatî.—Verse 1 = VS. XI, 27; TS. IV, 1, 2, 5; TÂ. X, 76, 1; MS. II, 7, 2. Verse 2 = RV. X, 91, 10. Verse 6 = TS. I, 3, 14, 1; TB. III, 12, 2, 1. Verse 13 = TB. II, 7, 12, 6.
Note 1. Among the numerous texts which treat of the different origins of Agni (see Bergaigne, I, 20 seq.), especially the following two verses may be compared with this passage: VI, 48, 5. yám â´pah ádrayah vánâ gárbham ritásya píprati sáhasâ yáh mathitáh gâ´yate nríbhih prithivyâ´h ádhi sâ´navi; X, 45, 1. diváh pári prathamám gagñe agníh asmát dvitî´yam pári gâtávedâh tritî´yam apsú nrimánâh ágasram índhâna enam garate svâdhî´h.
Note 2. The text (dyúbhih tvám âsusukshánih) seems to be corrupt. I believe that tvám, which is so frequently repeated through this verse and through the next verses, has been put here in the wrong place, and that we should read, dyúbhyah â´ susukshánih.
Note 3. With the last words of this verse, comp. the conclusion of verse 24.
Note 1. This whole verse is repeated, X, 91, 10.
Note 2. In my opinion there is no doubt that instead of the traditional reading, agnít, the correct form is agnî´t. The word is a compound of agní and idh and means 'the inflamer of the fire.' Cf. M. M., Hist. of A. S. L., 1859, pp. 450, 469.
Note 3. This is the most ancient list of the 'seven priests,' by the side of whom the grihá-pati or 'master of the house' is mentioned as the eighth. Comp. the formula in which the Adhvaryu names the officiating priests, Kâtyâyana IX, 8, 8 seq., and see the remarks of Weber, Indische Studien, X, 141, 376, and my own exposition, Religion des Veda, 383 seq., 396. The 'Brahman' mentioned in our verse is the Brâhmanâkkhamsin of the later ritual. Comp. Kâtyâyana IX, 8, 11; Satapatha Brâhmana IV, 6, 6, 5.
Note 1. On verses 3–6, see von Bradke, Dyâus Asura, p. 52 seq.
Note 2. Brihaspati or Brahmanaspati is the Brahman among the gods. But it is doubtful whether the title of Brahman in this connection should be understood in the later technical sense of the word, as the Ritvig who has to superintend the whole sacrifice. Comp. H. O., Religion des Veda, 396, note 1.
Note 3. Vidhartri seems to be here another name of Bhaga; (comp. VII, 41, 2. bhágam huvema … yáh vidhartâ´). It is known that no god is so frequently mentioned in connection with Puramdhi as Bhaga. The passages have been collected by Grassmann in his Dictionary, s. v. púram-dhi.
Note 1. Prof. von Bradke (Dyâus Asura, 53) believes that the text is corrupt; he thinks that the fourth Pâda may have occupied the place of a lost continuation of the relative clause, yásya sam-bhúgam. I cannot but share the feeling on which Prof. von Bradke's remark rests, though I do not believe that the solution of the difficulty which he proposes is very probable. Could not the correct reading be yâsi (instead of yásya) sam-bhúgam, 'thou goest to the enjoyment (of goods)?' Comp. VI, 71, 6, where the traditional text has vâmásya hí ksháyasya deva bhû´reh, and ksháyasya doubtless should be changed into ksháyasi.
Note 2. On Amsa, as one of the Âdityas, comp. Bergaigne, III, 39, 99.
Note 3. Vidáthe: comp. the note on I, 31, 6. It is tempting to conjecture vidhaté (comp. verse 5), but there is no necessity for such a conjecture. Comp., for instance, VI, 24, 2. vidáthe dâti vâ´gam.
Note 1. Gnâvah should be read without accent, as Grassmann, Prof. Weber, and M. Henry (Revue Critique, Jan. 12, 1891, p. 23) have seen. Cf. Lanman, 518, 519.
Note 2. The meaning probably is, 'Thou art related to the other gods and to men,' or 'Thou art related to us.' Comp. VIII, 27, 10; 73, 12.
Note 3. Agni seems to be identified here with Apâm napât, who frequently is called âsu-héman. Comp. Windisch, Festgruss an Roth, 143 seq.
Note 4. The men, of course, are the Maruts, as is shown by the well-known use of sárdhah (cf. vol. xxxii, p. 67 seq.).
Note 1. Comp. von Bradke, Dyâus Asura, J3 seq.
Note 1. As to aramkríte, cf. VIII, 67, 3.
Note 2. Or, thou art a protector to him who has worshipped thee in his house.—Among the various ways for explaining or removing the metrical deficiency of the last Pâda the correction dáme â´ (for dáme) is recommended by verse 8.
Note 1. Ishtíbhih, standing by the side of sámyâ, seems to be derived from the root yag. Thus îgé, îgâná stand by the side of sasamé, sasamâná.—Cf. ishtíbhih matíbhih, II, 18, 1.
Note 1. The names of the three Ribhus are Ribhu, Vâga, Vibhvan. The word vâ´ga used here evidently alludes to the second of these names.
Note 2. Bergaigne (Religion Véd., II, 406) no doubt is right in believing that the verb ví bhâsi ('thou shinest') alludes to the name Vibhvan. Comp. X, 91, 1. vibhúh vibhâ´vâ.
Note 3. Vi-síkshuh again seems to convey an allusion to the Ribhu myth. When dividing the cup of Tvashtri into four cups, the Ribhus say, sákhe ví siksha (IV, 35, 3). This ví siksha and the corresponding adjective vi-síkshu should be derived from the root sas, 'to cut to pieces.'
Note 1. Here we have the three goddesses of the Âprî hymns, Bhâratî, Idâ, and Sarasvatî. Of the goddess
[paragraph continues] Bhâratî the full name is given, Hotrâ Bhâratî, i. e. 'the Offering of the Bharatas.' Comp. Bergaigne, I, 322 seq.
Note 2. Comp. VI, 6.1, 7, where Sarasvatî is called vrítraghnî´.
Note 1. Or 'through (thee who art their) mouth.'
Note 2. Comp. I, 19, 3. vísve devâ´sah adrúhah; vol. xxxii, pp. 53, 55.
Note 1. On this verse, compare Pischel, Vedische Studien, I, 97.
Note 2. On priksháh, see above, I, 127, 5, note 1.
Note 1. On gó-agra, compare Pischel, Vedische Studien, I, 51.
Note 2. Vidáthe: comp. the note on I, 31, 6.