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Vedic Hymns, Part II (SBE46), by Hermann Oldenberg [1897], at

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1. With our offerings revering in our mind Agni Vaisvânara, the follower of truth, the finder of the sun—we, the Kusikas 1, desirous of goods, call with our prayers the god who gives rain, the charioteer, the, cheerful.

2. We call that beautiful Agni to help us, Vaisvânara, Mâtarisvan the praiseworthy 1; we the men (call) Brihaspati 2 for (the worship) of the divine host, the priest who hears us, the. guest who swiftly glides along.

3. Vaisvânara, neighing like a horse, is kindled by the women 1, by the Kusikas, from age to age; may this Agni give us abundance in valiant men and in horses and treasures, he who wakes among the immortals.


4. May the Vâgas 1 come forward, the Agnis with their powers. United 2 they have harnessed the spotted deer for their triumphal procession 3. The Maruts, mightily growing, the all-wealthy, make the mountains tremble, the unbeguiled ones.

5. The Maruts who possess the beauty of Agni 1, belong to all races of men. We implore their fierce, strong help. They are tumultuous, the sons of Rudra, clothed in rain, hot-spirited like lions 2, givers of rain.

6. We implore with our best praises every host, every troop (of the Maruts) 1, the splendour of Agni,

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the power of the Maruts. With the spotted deer as horses 2, with gifts that cannot be taken away, they go to the sacrifice wise in the (sacrificial) ordinances 3.


7. Agni am I, by birth Gâtavedas. Ghee is my eye; (the drink of) immortality is in my mouth. The threefold song 1 traversing the aerial space, the imperishable Gharma 2, the sacrificial food am I by name.

8. With three purifying strainers he (Agni) purified the song, with his heart the thought, discovering the light. The mightiest treasure he produced by the powers of his own nature, and then he looked over heaven and earth.

9. Carry him who is the inexhaustible spring with a hundred rills, who has knowledge of prayers (?), the father of (every speech) that should be uttered, the roaring one 1, gladly excited in the lap of his parents—carry him the truth-speaking across (all dangers), O ye two worlds!


Visvâmitra is the Rishi of this Sûkta with the exception of the seventh verse of which the Âtman or Brahman is the Rishi. The metre is Gagatî verses 1–6, Trishtubh verses 7–9.—Verse 5 = TB. II, 7, 12, 3. Verse 7 = VS. XVIII, 66; MS. IV, 12, 5.

The position of this Sûkta in the collection shows that it is to be divided into three independent hymns. This is confirmed by the metre, the first and second of these three hymns being in Gagatî, the third in Trishtubh, and also by the contents: the first hymn is addressed to Agni Vaisvânara, the second to Agni accompanied by the Maruts, the third contains mystical speculations about the nature and the deeds of Agni.

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Verse 1.

Note 1. The Kusikas are identical with the Visvâmitras, or possibly the latter form one branch of the Kusikas; see H. O., Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellschaft, XLII, 209.

Verse 2.

Note 1. On the relation of Mâtarisvan to Agni, see above, I, 96, 4, note 1.

Note 2. Brihaspati, though in his origin distinct from Agni, is here identified with him, like Mâtarisvan.

Verse 3.

Note 1. By the ten fingers. Comp. above, I, 71, 1.

Verse 4.

Note 1. I adopt the interpretation of Bergaigne (Religion Védique, II, 405, note 1) and Pischel (Vedische Studien, I, 46). Vâ´gâh seems to be the proper name synonym with Ribhávah; the Maruts may be called Vâ´gâh as they are called several times Ribhukshánah. But it is possible that we should have to translate simply, 'May the powers of strength,' &c.; comp. below, 27, 1.

Note 2. Possibly we have to supply, 'united with their spotted deer, with their beauty,' &c.; see II, 36, 2. yagñh sámmish pshatîbhih rishtíbhih; VII, 56, 6. sriyâ´ sámmish. Or the meaning may be, 'the Maruts united with Agni or with the Agnis;' comp. I, 166, 11. sámmish índre.

Note 3. On subhé, see M. M., I, 87, 3, note 2 (vol. xxxii, p. 162).

Verse 5.

Note 1. Or, they receive their beauty through Agni.

Note 2. Of heshákratu the probable explanation has been given by Pischel, Vedische Studien, I, 48. See also von Bradke, Kuhn's Zeitschrift, XXVIII, 297.

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Verse 6.

Note 1. Comp. V, 53, II, vol. xxxii, p. 320.

Note 2. Comp. II, 34, 4, vol. xxxii, p. 302, note 5.

Note 3. The text has vidátheshu.

Verse 7.

Note 1. Comp. VIII, 51, 4. arkám saptásîrshânam … tridhâ´tum uttamé padé. Is the song called tridhâ´tu because it is sung by the three Udgâtris (singers)? Or because it generally comprises three verses (see H. O., Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellschaft, XXXVIII, 453)?

Note 2. The Gharma is the offering of hot milk brought to the Asvins. On the probable meaning of this offering, see H. O., Religion des Veda, 447 seq.

Verse 9.

Note 1. The translation of melí (comp. IV, 7, 11; Atharva-veda XI, 7, 5; Taitt. Samh. V, 7, 8, 1) is quite conjectural.

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