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Satapatha Brahmana Part II (SBE26), Julius Eggeling tr. [1885], at




3:3:2:11. Having thrown the (earth of the) foot-print (into the pan), he (the Adhvaryu) washes his hands. Now as to why he washes his hands;--clarified butter being a thunderbolt, and the Soma being seed, he washes his hands lest 3 he should injure the seed, Soma, with the thunderbolt, the ghee.

3:3:2:22. Thereupon he ties the piece of gold to this (finger 4). Now, twofold indeed is this (universe),--there is no third,--the truth and the untruth: the gods are the truth and men are the untruth. And gold having sprung from Agni's seed, he ties the gold to this (finger), in order that he may touch the twigs (of the Soma) with the truth, that he may handle the Soma by means of the truth.

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3:3:2:33. He then orders (the sacrificer's men), 'Bring thou the Soma-cloth! bring thou the Soma-wrapper! bring thou the head-band!' Let some shining (cloth) be the Soma-cloth; for this is to be his (king Soma's 1) garment, and shining indeed is his garment: and whosoever serves him with a shining (garment), he truly shines. But he who says, '(Bring) anything whatsoever,' he will indeed be anything whatsoever: let the Soma-cloth, therefore, be some splendid (cloth), and the Soma-wrapper one of any kind.

3:3:2:44. If he can get a head-band, let there be a headband; but if he cannot get a head-band, let him cut off from the Soma-wrapper a piece two or three fingers long, to serve as the head-band. Either the Adhvaryu or the Sacrificer takes the Soma-cloth, and some one or other the Soma-wrapper.

3:3:2:55. Now, in the first place, they pick the king (Soma). A pitcher of water is placed close to him, and a Brâhman sits beside him 2. Thither they (the priests and sacrificer) now proceed eastward.

3:3:2:66. While they go there, he (the Adhvaryu) makes

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[paragraph continues] (the sacrificer) say the text (Vâg. S. IV, 24), 'Say thou, for me, unto Soma, "This is thy gâyatrî-part (bhâga) 1!" Say thou, for me, unto Soma, "This is thy trishtubh-part!" Say thou, for me, unto Soma, "This is thy gayatî-part!" Say thou, for me, unto Soma, "Obtain thou the supreme sovereignty of the names of metres!"' Now, when he (king Soma) is bought, he is bought for one (destination 2)--for the sovereignty of the metres, for the supreme sovereignty of the metres; and when they press him, they slay him: hereby now he says to him, 'It is for the sovereignty of the metres, for the supreme sovereignty of the metres that I buy thee, not for slaying thee.' Having gone there, he sits down (behind the Soma) with his face towards the east.

3:3:2:77. He touches (the Soma-plants), with, 'Ours thou art,'--thereby he (Soma), now that he has come (as a guest), becomes as it were one of his (the sacrificer's) own (people): for this reason he says, 'Ours thou art;'--'Thy pure (juice) is meet for the draught,' for he will indeed take therefrom the 'pure draught 3.' 'Let the pickers pick thee!' this he says for the sake of completeness.

3:3:2:88. Now some, on noticing any straw or (piece of) wood (among the Soma-plants), throw it away. But let him not do this; for--the Soma being the nobility and the other plants the common people, and the

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people being the nobleman's food--it would be just as if one were to take hold of and pull out some (food) he has put in his mouth, and throw it away. Hence let him merely touch it, with, 'Let the pickers pick thee!' Those pickers of his do indeed pick it.

3:3:2:99. He then spreads the cloth (over the ox-hide), either twofold or fourfold, with the fringe towards the east or north. Thereon he metes out the king (Soma); and because he metes out the king, therefore there is a measure,--both the measure among men and whatever other measure there is.

3:3:2:1010. He metes out, with a verse to Savitri; for Savitri is the impeller of the gods, and so that (Soma) becomes for him impelled by Savitri to the purchase.

3:3:2:1111. He metes out with an atikhandas-verse; for that one, viz. the atikhandas 1, embraces all metres; and so that (Soma) is meted out for him by means of all the metres: therefore he metes out with an atikhandas-verse.

3:3:2:1212. He metes out, with the text (Vâg. S. IV, 25), 'Unto that divine Savitri within the two bowls 2, the sage, I sing praises, to him of true

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impulse, the bestower of treasures, the wise and thoughtful friend;--he at whose impulse the resplendent light shone high, the golden-handed sage hath measured the ether with his form.'

3:3:2:1313. Therewith 1 he metes out (the Soma) with all (five fingers), therewith with four, therewith with three, therewith with two, therewith with one; therewith with one, therewith with two, therewith with three, therewith with four, therewith with all (fingers); having laid (the two hands) together 2 he throws (Soma) thereon with the joined open hands.

3:3:2:1414. He metes out while bending up and bending down (the fingers). The reason why he metes out in bending (the fingers) up and down is that he thereby makes those fingers of separate existence, and therefore they are born separate (from each other); and as to his meting out with all (fingers) together, these (fingers) are to be born, as it were, united. This is why he metes out in bending (the fingers) up and down.

3:3:2:1515. And, again, as to his meting out in bending them up and down,--he thereby renders them of varied power, and hence these (fingers) are of varied

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power. That is why he metes out in bending them up and down.

3:3:2:1616. And, again, as to his meting out in bending them up and down,--he thereby harnesses a virâg 1 (to ply) thitherwards and hitherwards: going thither-wards, namely, it conveys the sacrifice to the gods, and coming hitherwards it assists men. This is why he metes out in bending (the fingers) up and down.

3:3:2:1717. And as to his meting out ten times,--the virâg is of ten syllables, and the Soma is of virâg nature: for this reason he metes out ten times.

3:3:2:1818. Having gathered up the ends of the Soma-cloth, he (the Adhvaryu) ties them together by means of the head-band, with, 'For descendants (I tie) thee;'--for it is indeed for (the purpose of obtaining) descendants that he buys it (Soma): what (part of man) here is, as it were, compressed between the head and the shoulders, that he thereby makes it to be for him (the sacrificer) 2.

3:3:2:1919. He then makes a finger-hole in the middle (of the knot), with the text, 'Let the descendants breathe after thee!' For, in compressing (the cloth), he, as it were, strangles him (Soma and the sacrificer) and renders him breathless; hereby now he emits his breath from inside, and after him breathing the descendants also breathe: for this reason he says, 'Let the descendants breathe after thee.' Thereupon he hands him (Soma) to the Soma-seller. Now, then, of the bargain.


63:3 The construction in the original is as usual in the oratio directa.

63:4 Viz. to the nameless (or ring) finger. Kâty. VII, 6, 27.

64:1 I do not think 'asya' could refer to the sacrificer, in opposition to 'etasya' (Soma); nor can the latter be construed with the following relative clause 'sa yo . . .' The Kânva text reads, Tad yad eva sobhanatamam tat somopanahanam syâd, vâso by asyaitad bhavati; sa yo haitak khobhanatamam kurute, sobhate haiva sah, &c.

64:2 The Pratiprasthâtri, in the first place, takes the Soma-plants (from the seller) and puts them on an ox-hide, dyed red and spread on the ground at the place (in the east of the hall) where the 'sounding-holes' will be dug (see III, 5, 4, 1 seq.). The seller of the Soma, who is to be either of the Kutsa tribe or a Sûdra, then picks the Soma, breaking the plants at the joints. A jar filled with water is placed in front of the Soma, and a Brâhman (or the assistant of the Brahman, viz. the Brâhmanâkhamsin) sits down by the (right or south) side of the Soma. Kâty. VII, 6, 1-6.

65:1 The three parts refer to the three Savanas, at which the respective metres are used. See IV, 3, 2, 7 seq.

65:2 Bhâgam appears to have been lost here, since a play on that word seems to be intended, which might perhaps be reproduced by lot.' It is given both at the Kânva text and at III, 4, 1, 7.

65:3 For the Sukra-graha, see IV, 2, 1, 1 seq.

66:1 Atikhandas ('over-metre') is the generic name for the metres which number more than forty-eight syllables: hence it is said to include all the other metres which consist of fewer syllables. See VIII, 6, 2, 23, where the term is explained by atti-khandâh (metre-eater).'

66:2 Or, that divine invigorator of the two 'oni.' According to the St. Petersb. Dict., 'oni' would seem to refer to two parts of the Soma-press. Professor Ludwig takes it to mean 'press-arm' and the 'arm' generally, which suits very well some of the passages in which the word occurs. Here, in the loc. or gen. case, it can scarcely mean 'arms' (though Savitri's two arms are often referred to as dispelling the darkness and keeping asunder the spaces, cf. Rig-veda II, 38, 2; IV, 53, 3; 4; VI, 75, 1; 5; VII, 45, 2), but apparently refers to 'heaven and earth' being thus equivalent to p. 67 the two kamû (originally the two receptacles or bowls into which the pressed Soma flows) in Rig-veda III, 55, 20.

67:1 Viz. with the same formula, repeating it each time. The meting out of the Soma is done with the fingers of the right hand, first with all five, and then successively turning in one (beginning with the thumb), till the little finger remains with which he takes Soma twice, whereupon he again successively releases the fingers.

67:2 There is some doubt as to whether this refers to the preceding 'with all (viz. ten fingers);' or whether he is to take for the tenth time some Soma with the five fingers of the right hand, and then once more (without muttering the text) with the joined hands. See Kâty. VII, 7, 18, 29. The text seems to be purposely vague.

68:1 The virâg (the shining' or 'ruling' metre) consists of (generally three or four) pâdas of ten syllables each: hence it is here connected with the ten metings out of Soma.

68:2 The Soma representing offspring, he gives the bundle a shape resembling the human body.

Next: III, 3, 3. Third Brâhmana