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Pahlavi Texts, Part III (SBE24), E.W. West, tr. [1885], at


1. The sage asked the spirit of wisdom (2) thus: 'Of mankind which are more conversant with good and evil?'

3. The spirit of wisdom answered (4) thus: 'Of mankind he whose sojourn 3 and business are with the bad 4, and they provide him a name for good repute and goodness, is the man more conversant with good. 5. And he whose sojourn and business are with the good 5, and they provide him a name for disrepute, is the man more conversant with evil.

6. 'Because it is said, (7, 8) that whoever joins with the good brings good with him, and whoever

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joins with the bad brings 1 evil—(9) just like the wind which, when it impinges on stench, is 2 stench, (10) and when it impinges on perfume, is perfume,—(11) it is, therefore, notorious 3, (12) that he whose business is with the good receives good, (13) and he whose business is with the bad receives 4 evil; (14) but, even then, both are to be considered as an experiment (aûzmâyisnŏ) 5.'


106:3 Reading nisastŏ. L19 has 'whose business is most (vês-ast),' both here and in § 5.

106:4 L19 has 'the good.'

106:5 L19 has 'the bad.'

107:1 L19 has 'will bring with him' in both clauses, but the repetition is unnecessary in Pahlavi.

107:2 L19 has 'will bring with it,' both here and in § 10.

107:3 L19 has 'proper to know.'

107:4 K43 does not repeat this verb.

107:5 L19 has 'by the result (anzâmesn).' The meaning is that, though a man's character is generally in accordance with the company he keeps, this must not be assumed without proof; and when the contrary is the case, as stated in §§ 4, 5, his own disposition must be of a very decided nature. Nêryôsang seems to have misunderstood the author's argument, and, supposing §§ 6-13 to contain a mere illustration of §§ 4, 5, he considered it necessary to transpose 'the bad' and 'the good' in §§ 4, 5, so as to make the illustration applicable.

Next: Chapter LXI