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

p. 244


1. As to the eighty-second question and reply, that which you ask is thus: Is it necessary for a priestly man 1 that he should undertake all the religious rites and other ceremonials, or in what way is it?

2. The reply is this, that a priestly man should necessarily undertake all the religious rites and other ceremonials, because the deciding and advising performers of the ceremonial, these same priestly men, well understand the merit or demerit, the propriety or impropriety, of the ceremonial. 3. When the undertaker and conductor of all the religious rites is a priestly man, one is more hopeful of their progress in merit.

4. As to the priestly man who shall undertake all the religious rites, if he be living comfortably (hû-zîvisnŏ) on a share of our house-rulership 2,

p. 245

village-rulership, tribe-rulership, and province-rulership, and his needful support of religion remain the consideration as to his living comfortably, and he have no need for the stipend of all the religious rites, then the rule for him is to distribute properly that recompense of the sacred feast 1, which is to be given for all the religious rites, among the solemnizers 2. 5. If it be needful for him, the priestly man, as he is suitable, is not changed--whereby good management is not attained--and if it be needful even for his consideration of all those religious rites, his performance in the duty and ministration is then an approval of worthiness and management. 6. When they shall act so, all those religious rites are more meritoriously managed; and one day the solemnizers are brought from the fag-end (sar) into the rank of priestly manhood, which is the stipend for all the religious rites that they shall expressly take authorisedly, and are, therefore, worthy of it  3.


244:1 The term magavôg-gabrâ probably means strictly 'a man of a priestly family,' as distinguished from a priest appointed from -the laity, an appointment that seems to have been occasionally made informer times (see Bd. Introd. p. xxxiii, note 1). According to the Nîrangistân any virtuous man or woman can perform certain priestly duties under certain circumstances (see Sls. X, 35), but would not, of course, be magavôg, 'priestly, or of priestly family.'

244:2 Reading mânpatîh, instead of magôpatîh, 'priesthood,' which words are often confounded in Pahlavi, being written very nearly alike. And assuming that hatŏm, 'if my,' stands for hatŏmân, 'if our;' M14 has atûkhsh, 'without exertion,' but hatŏs, 'if his,' would be a more probable emendation, as it occurs in the next section.

245:1 See Chap. XLVII, 1.

245:2 That is, if the chief priest has already a sufficient income, he is not to appropriate the fees for such occasional ceremonies, but to distribute them among his assistants, who are the actual solemnizers.

245:3 That is, when the chief priest requires the fees for his own support, the reward of his assistants must be the fact that they are rendering themselves competent to undertake the responsibility of the chief priest at some future time.

Next: Chapter LXXXIV