Hymns of the Atharvaveda - Book 09

Atharva Veda

Translation by Ralph T.H. Griffith

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HYMN I Scroll Up

A glorification of the Asvins' whip and a prayer for blessings

1The Asvins' Honey-whip was born from heaven and earth, from
middle air, and ocean, and from fire and wind.
All living creatures welcome it with joyful hearts, fraught with
the store of Amrit it hath gathered up.
2They call thee earth's great strength in every form, they call
thee too the ocean's genial seed.
Whence comes the Honey-whip bestowing bounty, there Vital
Spirit is, and Amrit treasured.
3In sundry spots, repeatedly reflecting, men view upon the earth:
her course and action;
For she, the first-born daughter of the Maruts, derives her
origin from Wind and Agni.

4Daughter of Vasus, mother of Ādityas, centre of Amrit breath
of living creatures.
The Honey-whip, gold-coloured, dropping fatness, moves as a
mighty embryo 'mid mortals.
5The deities begat the Whip of Honey: her embryo assumed all
forms and fashions.
The mother nourishes that tender infant which at its birth
looks on all worlds and beings.
6Who understandeth well, who hath perceived it, her heart's un-
injured Soma-holding beaker?
Let the wise Brāhman priest therein be joyful.
7He understandeth them, he hath perceived them, her breasts
that pour a thousand streams, uninjured.
They unreluctantly yield strength and vigour.
8She who with voice upraised in constant clamour, mighty, life-
giving, goes unto her function,
Bellowing to the heated three libations, suckles with streams of
milk, and still is lowing.
9On whom, well-fed, the Waters wait in worship, and steers and
self-refulgent bulls attend her.
For thee, for one like thee down pour the Waters, and cause
desire and strength to rain upon thee.
10The thunder is thy voice, O Lord of Creatures: a Bull, thou
castest on the earth thy vigour.
The Honey-whip, the Manus' first-born daughter, derives her
origin from Wind and Agni.
11As at the morning sacrifice the Asvins twain love Soma well,
Even so may both the Asvins lay splendour and strength within
my soul.
12As at the second sacrifice Indra and Agni love him well,
Let the pair, Indra Agni, lay splendour and strength within my
13As at third sacrifice Soma is the Ribhus' well-beloved one,
Even so may they, the Ribhus, store splendour and strength
within my soul.

14Fain would I bring forth sweetness, fain would make it mine.
Bringing milk, Agni! have I come: splendour and strength
bestow on me!
15Grant me, O Agni, splendid strength, and progeny, and length-
ened life.
May the Gods know me as I am, may Indra with the Rishis
16As honey-bees collect and add fresh honey to their honey store,
Even so may both the Asvins lay splendour and strength within
my soul.
17As over honey flies besmear this honey which the bees have
So may both Asvins lay in me splendour and strength and
power and might.
18May all the sweetness that is found in hills and mountains,
steeds and kine,
And wine that floweth from the cup,—may all that sweetness
be in me.
19May both the Asvins, Lords of Light, balm me with honey of
the bees,
That I may speak among the folk words full of splendour and
of strength.
20The thunder is thy voice, O Lord of Creatures: a Bull, thou
castest strength on earth and heaven.
To that all cattle look for their existence: with this she nourishes
their force and vigour.
21The Whip itself is Heaven, Earth is the handle, the point of
juncture is the Air's mid-region.
The lash is lightning, and the tip is golden.
22Whoever knows the Whip's seven kinds of honey, becomes
himself a man endowed with sweetness.
Brāhman and King, the draught-ox and the milch-cow, barley
and rice, and honey is the seventh.
23Sweet is the man, sweet are his goods and chattels: he who
knows this conquers the worlds of sweetness.
24The thundering of Prajāpati in heaven is verily manifest to living
Therefore I stand from right to left invested, and, O Prajāpati,
I cry, regard me!
The man who hath this knowledge is regarded by living beings
and the Lord of Creatures.

HYMN II Scroll Up

A glorification of Kāma as God of desire of all that is good

1Kāma the Bull, slayer of foes, I worship with molten butter,
sacrifice, oblation.
Beneath my feet cast down mine adversaries with thy great
manly power, when I have praised thee.
2That which is hateful to mine eye and spirit, that harasses and
robs me of enjoyment,
The evil dream I loose upon my foemen. May I rend him when
I have lauded Kāma.
3Kāma, do thou, a mighty Lord and Ruler, let loose ill dream,
misfortune, want of children,
Homelessness, Kāma! utter destitution, upon the sinner who
designs my ruin.
4Drive them away, drive them afar, O Kāma; indigence fall on
those who are my foemen!
When they have been cast down to deepest darkness, consume
their dwellings with thy fire, O Agni.
5She, Kāma! she is called the Cow, thy daughter, she who is
named Vāk and Virāj by sages.
By her drive thou my foemen to a distance. May cattle, vital
breath, and life forsake them.
6By Kāma's might, King Varuna's and Indra's, by Vishnu's
strength, and Savitar's instigation,
I chase my foes with sacrifice to Agni, as a deft steersman drives
his boat through waters.
7May Kāma, mighty one, my potent warder, give me full free-
dom from mine adversaries.
May all the Deities be my protection, all Gods come nigh to
this mine invocation.
8Accepting this oblation rich with fatness, be joyful here, ye
Gods whose chief is Kāma,
Giving me freedom from mine adversaries.
9Ye, Indra, Agni, Kāma! come together and cast mine adver-
saries down beneath me.
When they have sunk into the deepest darkness, O Agni, with
thy fire consume their dwellings.
10Slay those who are mine enemies, O Kāma: headlong to depth
of blinding darkness hurl them.
Reft be they all of manly strength and vigour! Let them not
have a single day's existence.
11Kāma hath slain those who were mine opponents, and given me
ample room to grow and prosper.
Let the four regions bow them down before me, and let the
six expanses bring me fatness.
12Let them drift downward like a boat torn from the rope that
held it fast.
There is no turning back for those whom our keen arrows have
13Agni averts, Indra averts, and Soma: may the averting Gods
avert this foeman.
14To be avoided by his friends, detested, repelled, with few men
round him, let him wander.
Yea, on the earth descend the lightning-flashes: may the strong
God destroy your adversaries.
15This potent lightning nourishes things shaken, and things un-
shaken yet, and all the thunders.
May the Sun, rising with his wealth and splendour, drive in
victorious might my foemen downward.
16Thy firm and triply-barred protection, Kāma! thy spell, made
weapon-proof extended armour
With that drive thou my foemen to a distance. May cattle, vital
breath, and life forsake them.
17Far from the world wherein we live, O Kāma, drive thou my
foemen with that selfsame weapon
Wherewith the Gods repelled the fiends, and Indra cast down
the Dasyus into deepest darkness.
18As Gods repelled the Asuras, and Indra down to the lowest
darkness drove the demons,
So, Kāma, from this world, to distant places, drive thou the
men who are mine adversaries.
19First before all sprang Kāma into being. Gods, Fathers, mortal
men have never matched him.
Stronger than these art thou, and great for ever. Kāma, to thee,
to thee I offer worship.
20Wide as the space which heaven and earth encompass, far as
the flow of waters, far as Agni,
Stronger than these art thou, and great for ever. Kāma, to thee,
to thee I offer worship.
21Vast as the quarters of the sky and regions that lie between
them spread in all directions, vast as celestial tracts and views
of heaven,
Stronger than these art thou, and great for ever. Kāma, to thee,
to thee I offer worship.
22Many as are the bees, and bats, and reptiles, and female serpents
of the trees, and beetles,
Stronger art thou than these, and great for ever. Kāma, to thee,
to thee I offer worship.
23Stronger art thou than aught that stands or twinkles, stronger
art thou than ocean, Kāma! Manyu!
Stronger than these art thou, and great for ever. Kāma, to thee,
to thee I offer worship.
24Not even Vāta is the peer of Kāma, not Agni, Chandramas
the Moon, nor Sūrya.
Stronger than these art thou, and great for ever. Kāma, to thee,
to thee I offer worship.
25Thy lovely and auspicious forms, O Kāma, whereby the thing
thou wilt becometh real,
With these come thou and make thy home among us, and make
malignant thoughts inhabit elsewhere.

HYMN III Scroll Up

On the consecration of a newly built house

1We loose the ties and fastenings of the house that holds all
precious things,
The bands of pillars and of stays, the ties of beams that form
the roof.
2All-wealthy House! each knot and band, each cord that is
attached to thee
I with my spell untie, as erst Brihaspati disclosed the cave.
3He drew them close, he pressed them fast, he made thy knotted.
bands secure:
With Indra's help we loose them as a skilful Slaughterer severs
4We loose the bands of thy bamboos, of bolts, of fastening, of
We loose the ties of thy side-posts, O House that holdest all we
5We loosen here the ties and bands of straw in bundles, and of
Of all that compasses and binds the Lady Genius of the Home.
6We loose the loops which men have bound within thee, loops
to tie and hold.
Be gracious, when erected, to our bodies, Lady of the Home.
7Store-house of Soma, Agni's hall, the ladies' bower, the resi-
The seat of Gods art thou, O Goddess House.
8We with our incantation loose the net that hath a thousand.
The diadem, securely tied and laid upon the central beam.
9The man who takes thee as his own, and he who was thy builder,.
Both these, O Lady of the Home, shall live to long-extended'
10There let her come to meet this man. Firm, strongly fastened,.
and prepared
Art thou whose several limbs and joints we part and loosen one
by one.
11He who collected timber for the work and built thee up, O
Made thee for coming progeny, Prajāpati, the Lord Supreme.
12Homage to him! We worship too the giver and the Mansion's
Homage to Agni! to the man who serves at holy rites for thee.
13Homage to kine and steeds! to all that shall be born within the
We loose the bonds that fasten thee, mother of multitudes to
14Agni thou shelterest within, and people with domestic beasts.
We loose the bonds that fasten thee, mother of multitudes to
15All space that lies between the earth and heaven, therewith I
take this house for thy possession,
And all that measures out the air's mid-region I make a hollow
to contain thy treasures. Therewith I take the house for his
16Rich in prosperity, rich in milk, founded and built upon the
Injure not thy receivers, House who holdest food of every sort!'
17Grass-covered, clad with straw, the house, like Night, gives rest
to man and beast.
Thou standest, built upon the earth, like a she-elephant, borne
on feet.
18I loosen and remove from thee thy covering formed by mats of
What Varuna hath firmly closed Mitra shall ope at early morn.
19May Indra, Agni, deathless Gods, protect the house where
Soma dwells,
House that was founded with the prayer, built and erected by
the wise.
20Nest upon nest hath been imposed, compartment on compart-
ment laid:
There man shall propagate his kind, and there shall everything
21Within the house constructed with two side-posts, or with four,
or six.
Built with eight side-posts, or with ten, lies Agni like a babe
22Turned to thee, House! I come to thee, innocent, turned to
welcome me:
For Fire and Water are within, the first chief door of sacrifice.
23Water that kills Consumption, free from all Consumption, here
I bring.
With Agni, the immortal one, I enter and possess the house.
24Lay thou no cord or noose on us: a weighty burthen, still be
Withersoever be our will, O House, we bear thee like a bride.
25Now from the east side of the house to the Great Power be
homage paid!
Hail to the Gods whose due is Hail!
26Now from the south side of the house, etc.
27Now from the west side of the house, etc.
28Now from the north side of the house, etc.
29So from the mansion's every side to the Great Power be homage
Hail to the Gods whose due is Hail!

HYMN IV Scroll Up

A glorification of the typical sacrificial bull

1The Bull, fierce, thousandfold, filled full of vigour, bearing
within his flanks all forms and natures,
Brihaspati's Steer, hath stretched the thread, bestowing bliss on
the worshipper, the liberal giver.
2He who at first became the Waters' model, a match for everyone,
like Earth the Goddess;
The husband of the cows, the young calves' father, may be
secure us thousandfold abundance.
3Masculine, prégnant, stedfast. full of vigour, the Bull sustains a
trunk of goodly treasure.
May Agni Jātavedas bear him offered, on pathways traversed by
the Gods, to Indra.
4The husband of the cows, the young calves' father, father is he
of mighty water-eddies.
Calf, after-birth, new milk drawn hot, and biestings, curds, butter,
that is his best genial humour.
5He is the Gods' allotted share and bundle, essence of waters,
and of plants, and butter.
Sakra elected him, the draught of Soma. What was his body
was a lofty mountain.
06. A beaker filled with Soma juice thou bearest. framer of forms,
begetter of the cattle.
Kindly to us be these thy wombs here present, and stay for us,
O Axe, those that are yonder.
7He bears oblation, and his seed is butter. Thousand-fold plenty;
sacrifice they call him.
May he, the Bull, wearing the shape of Indra, come unto us, O
Gods, bestowed, with blessing.
8Both arms of Varuna, and Indra's vigour, the Maruts' hump is
he, the Asvins' shoulders.
They who are sages, bards endowed with wisdom, call him
Brihaspati compact and heightened.
9Thou, vigorous, reachest to the tribes of heaven. Thee they call
Indra, thee they call Sarasvān.
Turned to one aim, that Brāhman gives a thousand who offers
up the Bull as his oblation.
10Brihaspati, Savitar gave thee vital vigour: thy breath was
brought from Tvashtar and from Vāyu.
In thought I offer thee in air's mid-region. Thy sacrificial grass
be Earth and Heaven!
11Let the priest joyfully extol the limbs and members of the Bull
Who moved and roared among the kine as Indra moves among
the Gods.
12The sides must be Anumati's, and both rib-pieces Bhaga's share,
Of the knee-bones hath Mitra said, Both these are mine, and
only mine.
13The Ādityas claim the hinder parts, the loins must be Brihas-
Vāta, the God, receives the tail: he stirs the plants and herbs
14To Sūryā they assigned the skin, to Sinivāli inward parts.
The Slaughterer hath the feet, they said, when they distributed
the Bull.
15They made a jest of kindred's curse: a jar of Soma juice was set,
What time the deities, convened, assigned the Bull's divided
16They gave the hooves to tortoises, to Saramā scraps of the feet:
His undigested food they gave to worms and things that creep
and crawl.
17That Bull, the husband of the kine, pierces the demons with his
Banishes famine with his eye, and hears good tidings with his
18With hundred sacrifices he worships: the fires consume him not:
All Gods promote the Braman who offers the Bull in sacrifice.
19He who hath given away the Bull to Brāhmans frees and cheers
his soul.
In his own cattle-pen he sees the growth and increase of his
20Let there be cattle, let there be bodily strength and progeny:
All this may the Gods kindly grant to him who gives away the
21Indra here verily hath rejoiced: let him bestow conspicuous
May he draw forth at will from yonder side of heaven a deft
cow, good to milk, whose calf is never wanting.
22With close connexion mingle with the cows in this our cattle-
Mingle, the Bull's prolific flow, and, Indra! thine heroic
23Here we restore this Bull, your youthful leader: sporting with
him, go, wander at your pleasure.
Ne'er, wealthy ones! may he be reft of offspring; and do ye
favour us with growth of riches.

HYMN V Scroll Up

A glorification of a sacrificial goat

1Seize him and bring him hither. Let him travel. foreknowing, to
the regions of the pious.
Crossing in many a place the mighty darkness, let the Goat
mount to the third heaven above us.
2I bring thee hither as a share for Indra; prince, at this sacrifice,.
for him who worships.
Grasp firmly from behind all those who hate us: so let the sacri-
ficer's men be sinless.
3Wash from his feet all trace of evil-doing: foreknowing, with
cleansed hooves let him go upward.
Gazing on many a spot, crossing the darkness, let the Goat
mount to the third heaven above us.
4Cut up this skin with the grey knife, Dissector! dividing joint
from joint, and mangle nothing
Do him no injury: limb by limb arrange him, and send him up
to the third cope of heaven.
5With verse upon the fire I set the caldron: pour in the water;
lay him down within it!
Encompass him with fire, ye Immolators. Cooked, let him reach
the world where dwell the righteous.
6Hence come thou forth, vexed by no pain or torment. Mount to
the third heaven from the heated vessel.
As fire out of the fire hast thou arisen. Conquer and win this
lucid world of splendour.
7The Goat is Agni: light they call him, saying that living man
must give him to the Brāhman.
Given in this world by a devout believer, the Goat dispels and
drives afar the darkness.
8Let the Panchaudana Goat, about to visit the three lights, pass
away in five divisions.
Go midst the pious who have paid their worship, and parted,
dwell on the third cope of heaven.
9Rise to that world, O Goat, where dwell the righteous: pass, like
a Sarabha veiled, all difficult places.
The Goat Panchaudana, given to a Brāhman, shall with all ful-
ness satisfy the giver.
10The Goat Panchaudana, given to a Brāhman, sets the bestower
on the pitch of heaven,
In the third vault, third sky, third ridge. One only Cow omni-
form art thou, that yields all wishes.
11That is the third light that is yours, ye Fathers. He gives the
Goat Panchaudana to the Brāhman.
Given in this world by the devout believer, the Goat dispels and
drives afar the darkness.
12Seeking the world of good men who have worshipped, he gives
the Goat Panchaudana to the Brāhman.
Win thou this world as thy complete possession. Auspicious
unto us be he, accepted!
13Truly the Goat sprang from the glow of Agni, inspired as sage
with all a sage's power.
Sacrifice, filled, filled full, offered with Vashat—this let the Gods
arrange.at proper seasons.
14Home-woven raiment let him give, and gold as guerdon to the
So he obtains completely all celestial and terrestrial worlds.
15Near to thee, Goat! approach these streams of Soma, divine,
distilling meath, bedecked with butter!
Stay thou the earth and sky and fix them firmly up on the seven-
rayed pitch and height of heaven.
16Unborn art thou, O Goat: to heaven thou goest. Though thee
Angirases knew that radiant region.
So may I know that holy world.
17Convey our sacrifice to heaven, that it may reach the Gods, with
Whereby thou, Agni, bearest wealth in thousands, and all pre-
cious things.
18The Goat Panchaudana, when cooked, transporteth, repelling
Nirriti, to the world of Svarga.
By him may we win worlds which Sūrya brightens.
19The droppings of the Odanas attending the Goat which I have
lodged with priest or people
May all this know us in the world of virtue, O Agni, at the
meeting of the pathways.
20This Unborn cleft apart in the beginning: his breast became the
earth, his back was heaven.
His middle was the air, his sides the regions; the hollows of his
belly formed both oceans.
21His eyes were Truth and Right. The whole together was Truth:
Virāj his head and Faith his breathing.
This Goat Panchaudana was indeed a sacrifice unlimited.
22A boundless sacrifice he performs, he wins himself a boundless
Who gives the Goat Panchaudana illumined with a priestly fee.
23Let him not break the victim's bones, let him not suck the
marrow out.
Let the man, taking him entire, here, even here deposit him.
24This, even this is his true form: the man uniteth him therewith.
Food, greatness, strength he bringeth him who giveth the Goat
Panchaudana illumed with guerdon.
25The five gold pieces, and the five new garments, and the five
milch-kine yield him all his wishes.
Who gives the Goat Panchaudana illumined with a priestly
26The five gold pieces, area light to light him, robes become armour
to defend his body;
He winneth Svarga as his home who giveth the Goat Panchaud-
ana illumed with bountry.
27When she who hath been wedded finds a second husband after-
The twain shall not be parted if they give the Goat Panchaud-
28One world with the re-wedded wife becomes the second hus-
band's home.
Who gives the Goat Panchaudana illumined with the priestly fee.
29They who have given a cow who drops a calf each season, or an
A coverlet, a robe, or gold, go to the loftiest sphere of heaven.
30Himself, the father and the son, the grandson, and the father's
Mother, wife, her who bore his babes, all the beloved ones I call.
31The man who knows the season named the Scorching—the Goat
Pafichaudana is this scorching season
He lives himself, he verily burns up his hated rival's fame,
Who gives the Goat Panchaudana illumined with the priestly
32The man who knows the season called the Working takes to
himself the active fame, his hated rival's active fame.
The Goat Panchaudana is this Working season.
He lives himself, etc.
33The man who knows the season called the Meeting takes to him-
self the gathering fame, his hated rival's gathering fame.
The Goat Panchaudana is this Meeting season.
34The man who knows the called the Swelling takes to himself the
swelling fame, his hated rival's swelling fame.
The Goat Panchaudana is this Swelling season.
He lives himself, etc.
35The man who knows the season called the Rising takes to him-
self the rising fame, his hated rival's rising fame.
The Goat Panchaudana in this Rising season.
36The man who knows the season called Surpassing takes to him-
self thé conquering fame, his hated rival's conquering fame.
The Goat Panchaudana is this Conquering season.
He lives himself, he verily burns up his hated rival's fame
Who gives the Goat Panchaudana illumined with a priestly fee.
37He cooks the Goat and the five boiled rice messes. May the uni-
ted Quarters, all accordant, and intermediate points, accept
him from thee.
38May these preserve him for thee. Here I offer t o these the molten
butter as oblation.

HYMN VI Scroll Up

A glorification of hospitable reception of guests

1Whoso will know Prayer with immediate knowledge, whose mem-
bers are the stuff, whose spine the verses:
2Whose hairs are psalms, whose heart is called the Yajus, whose
coverlet is verily oblation—
3Verily when a host looks at his guests he looks at the place of
sacrifice to the Gods.
4When he salutes them reverently he undergoes preparation for
a religious ceremony: when he calls for water, he solemnly
brings sacrificial water.
5The water that is solemnly brought at a sacrifice is this same
6The libation which they bring; the sacrificial victim dedicated
to Agni and Soma which is tied to the post, that, verily, is
this man.
7When they arrange dwelling-rooms they arrange the sacred
chamber and the shed for housing the Soma cars.
8What they spread upon the floor is just Sacrificial Grass.
9With the couch that the men bring, he wins for himself the
world of Svarga.
10The pillow-coverings that they bring are the green sticks that
surround the sacrificial altar.
11The ointment that they bring for injunction is just clarified
liquid butter.
12The food they bring before the general distribution represents
the two sacrificial cakes of rice meal.
13When they call the man who prepares food they summon the
preparer of oblation.
14The grains of rice and barley that are selected are just filaments
of the Soma plant.
15The pestle and mortar are really the stones of the Soma press.
16The winnowing-basket is the filter, the chaff the Soma dregs,
the water, the pressing-gear.
17Spoon, ladle, fork, stirring-prong are the wooden Soma tubs;
the earthen cooking-pots are the mortar-shaped Soma
vessels; this earth is just the black-antelope's skin.
18Or the host acts in this way to a Yajamāna's Brāhman: when
he looks at the furniture and utensils he says, More here t
yet more here.
19When he says, Bring out more, he lengthens his life thereby.
20He brings oblations: he makes the men sit down.
21As the guest of the seated company he himself offers up
22With ladle, with hand, in life, at the sacrificial post, with cry of
Ladle! with exclamation of Vashat!
23Now these guests, as priests beloved or not beloved, bring one
to the world of Svarga.
24He who hath this knowledge should not eat hating, should not
eat the food of one who hates him, nor of one who is doubt-
ful, nor of one who is undecided.
25This man whose food they eat hath all his wickedness blotted
26All that man's sin whose food they do not eat remains unblot-
ted out.
27The man who supplies food hath always pressing stones adjusted,
a wet Soma filter, well prepared religious rites, and mental
power to complete the arranged sacrifice.
28The arranged sacrifice of the man who offers food is a sacrifice
to Prajāpati.
29The man who offers food follows the steps of Prajāpati.
30The fire of the guests is the Āhavaniya, the fire in the dwelling
is the Gārhapatya, that whereon they cook food is the South-
ern Sacrificial Fire.
31Now that man who eats before the guest eats up the sacrifice
and the merit of the house.
32He devours the milk and the sap:
33And the vigour and prosperity.
34And the progeny and the cattle:
35And the fame and reputation.
36The man who eats before the guest eats up the glory and the
understanding of the house.
37The man should not eat before the guest who is a Brāhman
versed in holy lore.
38When the guest hath eaten he should eat. This is the rule for
the animation of the sacrifice and the preservation of its
39Now the sweetest portion, the produce of the cow, milk, or
flesh, that verily he should not eat.
40The man who having this knowledge pours out milk and offers
it wins for himself as much thereby as he gains by the perfor-
mance of a very successful Agnishtoma sacrifice.
41The man who having this knowledge pours out clarified butter
and offers it wins for himself thereby as much as he gains by
the performance of a very successful Atirātra sacrifice.
42He who pours out mead and offers it wins for himself thereby
as much as he gains by the performance of a very successful
Sattrasadya sacrifice.
43He who having this knowledge besprinkles flesh and offers it
wins for himself thereby as much as he gains by the perfor-
mance of a very successful Twelve-Day sacrifice.
44The man who having this knowledge pours out water and offers
it obtains a resting-place for the procreation of living beings
and becomes dear to living beings, even the man who having
this knowledge pours out water and offers it.
45For him Dawn murmurs, and Savitar sings the prelude; Brihas-
pati chants with vigour, and Tvashtar joins in with increase;
the Visve Devāh take up conclusion. He who hath this know-
ledge is the abiding-place of welfare, of progeny, and of
46For him the rising Sun murmurs, and Early Morning sings the
prelude; Noon chants the psalm, Afternoon joins in; the
setting Sun takes up the conclusion. He who hath this know-
ledge is the abiding place of welfare, of progeny, and of
47For him the Rain-cloud murmurs when present, sings the pre-
lude when thundering, joins in when lightening, chants the
psalm when raining, and takes up the conclusion when it stays
the downpour. He who hath this knowledge is the abiding-
place of welfare, of progeny, and of cattle.
48He looks at the guests, he utters a gentle sound; he speaks, he
signs the prelude; he calls for water, he chants the psalm; he
offers the residue of the sacrifice, he takes up the conclusion.
49When he summons the door-keeper he gives instruction.
50He (the door-keeper) pronounces the sacrificial formula in his
answer to what he hears.
51When the attendants with vessels in their hands, foremost and
hindmost, come in, they are just the priests who manage the
Soma cups.
52Not one of them is incompetent to sacrifice.
53Or if the host, having offered food to his guest, goes up to the
house, he virtually enters the bath of purification.
54When he distributes food he distributes priestly fees; what he
performs he asks as favour.
55He having been invited on earth, regales, invited in that, which
wears all various forms on earth.
56He, having been invited in air, regales, invited, in that which
wears all various forms in air.
57He having been invited in the sky, regales, invited, in that which
wears all various forms in the sky.
58He, having been invited among the gods, regales, invited in that
which wears all various forms among the Gods.
59He, having been invited in the worlds, regales, invited, in that
which wears all various forms in the worlds.
60He, having been invited hath been invited.
61He gains this world and the world yonder.
62He who hath this knowledge wins the luminous spheres.

HYMN VII Scroll Up

A glorification of the typically bull and cow

1Prajapati and Parameshthin are the two horns, Indra is the
head, Agni the forehead, Yama the joint of the neck.
2King Soma is the brain, Sky is the upper jaw, Earth is the
lower jaw.
3Lightning is the tongue, the Maruts are the teeth, Revati is the
neck, the Krittikās are the shoulders, the Gharma s the
4His universe is Vāyu, Svarga is his world, Krishpadram is the
tendons and Vertebrae.
5The Syena ceremony is the breast, Air is the region of the belly,.
Brihaspati is the hump, Brihatī the breast-bone and cartilages
of the ribs.
6The consorts of the Gods are the ribs, the attendants are ribs.
7Mitra and Varuna are the shoulder-blades. Tvashtar and Arya-
man the fore-arms, Mahādeva is the arms.
8Indrāni is the hinder parts, Vāyu the tail, Pavamāna the hair.
9Priestly rank and princely power are the hips, and strength is.
the thigh.
10Dhātar and Savitar are the two knee-bones, the Gandharvas are
the legs the Apsarases are bits of the feet, Aditi is the hooves.
11Thought is the heart, intelligence is the liver, law the pericar-
12Hunger is the belly, refreshing drink is the rectum, mountains.
are the inward parts.
13Wrath is the kidneys, anger the testes, offspring the generative
14The river is the womb, the Lords of the Rain are the breasts,.
the thunder is the udder.
15The All-embracing (Aditi) is the hide, the herbs are her hair,.
and the Lunar Mansions her form.
16The hosts of Gods are her entrails, man are her bowels, and
demons her abdomen.
17Rākshasas are the blood, the Other Folk are the contents of the
18The rain-cloud is her fat, her resting-place her marrow.
19Sitting he is Agni, when he hath stood up he is the Asvins.
20Standing east-wards he is Indra, standing southwards, Yama.
21Standing westwards he is Dhātar, standing northwards Savitar.
22When he hath got his grass he is King Soma.
23He is Mitra when he looks about him, and when he hath turned
round he is joy.
24When he is yoking he belongs to the All-Gods, when yoked he
is Prajāpati, when unyoked he is All.
25This verily is omniform, wearing all forms, bovine-formed.
26Upon him wait omniform beasts, wearing every shape, each one
who hath this knowledge.


A charm for the cure of various diseases connected with Consumption

1Each pain and ache that racks the head, earache, and erysipelas,.
All malady that wrings thy brow we charm away with this our
2From both thine ears, from parts thereof, thine earache, and the
throbbing pain,
All malady that wrings thy brow we charm away with this our
3So that Consumption may depart forth from thine ears and from.
thy mouth,
All malady that wrings thy brow we charm away with this our
4The malady that makes one deaf, the malady that makes one
All malady that wrings thy brow we charm away with this our
5The throbbing pain in all thy limbs that rends thy frame with
All malady that wrings thy brow we charm away with this our
6The malady whose awful look makes a man quiver with alarm,
Fever whom every Autumn brings we charm away with this our
7Disease that creeps about the thighs and, after, reaches both the
Consumption from thine inward parts we charm away with this
our spell.
8If the disease originates from love, from hatred, from the heart,
Forth from the heart and from the limbs we charm the wasting
9The yellow Jaundice from thy limbs, and Colic from the parts
And Phthisis from thine inward soul we charm away with this
our spell.
10Let wasting malady turn to dust, become the water of disease.
I have evoked the poison-taint of all Consumptions out of thee.
11Forth from the hollow let it run, and rumbling sounds from
thine inside.
I have evoked the poison-taint of all Consumptions out of thee.
12Forth from thy belly and thy lungs, forth from thy navel and
thy heart.
I have evoked the poison taint of all Consumptions out of thee.
13The penetrating stabs of pain which rend asunder crown and
Let them depart and pass away, free from disease and harming
14The pangs that stab the heart and reach the breast-bone and
connected parts,
Let them depart and pass away, free from disease and harming
15The stabs that penetrate the sides and pierce their way along the
Let them depart and pass away, free from disease and harming
16The penetrating pangs that pierce thy stomach as they shoot
Let them depart and pass away, free from disease and harming
17The pains that through the bowels creep, disordering the inward
Let them depart and pass away, free from disease and harming
18The pains that suck the marrow out, and rend and tear the bones
May they speed forth and pass away, free from disease and
harming not.
19Consumptions with their Colic pains which make thy limbs
I have evoked the poison-taint of all Consumptions out of thee.
20Of piercing pain, of abscesses, rheumatic ache, ophthalmia—
I have evoked the poison-taint of all Consumptions out of thee.
21I have dispelled the piercing pains from feet, knees, hips, and
hinder parts,
And spine, and from the neck and nape the malady that racked
the head.
22Sound are the skull-bones of thy head and thy heart's beat is
Thou, Sun, arising with thy beams hast chased away the head's
disease, hast stilled the pain that racked the limbs.

HYMN IX Scroll Up

Enunciation of mystico-theological and cosmological doctrine

1The second brother of this lovely Hotar, hoary with eld, is the
voracious Lightning.
The third is he whose back is balmed with butter. Here have I
seen the King with seven male children.
2The seven make the one-wheeled chariot ready: bearing seven
names the single Courser draws it.
The wheel, three-naved, is sound and undecaying: thereon these
worlds of life are all dependent.
3The seven who on this seven-wheeled car are mounted have
horses, seven in tale, who draw them onward.
Seven sisters utter songs of praise together, in whom the Cows'
seven names are held and treasured.
4Who hath beheld at birth the Primal Being, when She who hath
no bone supports the bony?
Where is the blood of earth, the life, the spirit? Who may ap-
proach the man who knows, to ask it?
5Let him who knoweth presently declare it, this lovely Bird's
securely-founded station.
Forth from his head the Cows draw milk, and wearing his ves-
ture with their foot have drunk the water.
6Unripe in mind, in spirit undiscerning, I ask of these the Gods'
established places.
High up above the yearling Calf the sages, to form a web, their
own seven threads have woven.
7Here, ignorant, I ask the wise who know it, as one who knows
not, for the sake of knowledge,
What is That One, who in the Unborn's image hath stablished
and fixed firm this world's six regions.
8The Mother gave the Sire his share of Order. With thought at
first she wedded him in spirit.
She, coyly loth, was filled with dew prolific. With adoration
men approached to praise her.
9Yoked was the Mother to the boon Cow's car-pole; in humid
folds of cloud the infant rested.
Then the Calf lowed and looked upon the Mother, the Cow
who wears all shapes in three directions.
10Bearing three mothers and three fathers, single he stood erect:
they never made him weary.
On yonder heaven's high ridge they speak together in speech
not known to all, themselves all-knowing.
11Upon the five-spoked wheel revolving ever, whereon all crea-
tures rest and are dependent,
The axle, heavy-laden, is not heated: the nave from ancient
time remains unheated.
12They call him in the farther half of heaven the Sire five-footed,
of twelve forms, wealthy in watery store.
These others, later still, say that he takes his stand upon a seven-
wheeled car, six-spoked, whose sight is clear.
13Formed with twelve spokes, too strong for age to weaken, this
wheel of during Order rolls round heaven.
Herein established, joined in pairs together, seven hundred sons
and twenty stand, O Agni.
14The wheel revolves, unwasting, with its felly: ten draw it, yoked
to the far-stretching car-pole.
Girt by the region moves the eye of Sūrya, on whom dependent
rest all living creatures.
15They told me these were males, though truly females. He who
hath eyes sees this, the blind discerns not.
The son who is a sage hath comprehended: who knows this
rightly is his father's father.
16Of the co-born they call the seventh single-born: the six twin,
pairs are called the Rishis, sons of Gods.
Their good gifts sought of men are ranged in order due, and,
various, form by form, move for their guiding Lord.
17Beneath the upper realm, above this lower, bearing her Calf at
foot, the Cow hath risen.
Whitherward, to what place hath she departed? Where doth she
calve? Not in this herd of cattle.
18Who, that the father of this Calf discerneth beneath the upper
realm, above the lower,
Showing himself a sage, may here declare him? Whence hath
the godlike spirit had its rising?
19Those that come hitherward they call departing, those that depart
they call directed hither.
Whatever ye have made, Indra and Soma! steeds draw, as' twere,
yoked to the region's car-pole.
20Two Birds with fair wings, knit with bonds of friendship, in the
same sheltering tree have found a refuge,
One of the twain eats the sweet Fig-tree's berry: the other, eat-
ing not, regardeth only.
21The tree whereon the fine Birds eat the sweetness, where they
all rest and procreate their offspring
Upon the top, they say the fruit is luscious: none gaineth it who
knoweth not the Father.
22Where the fine birds hymn ceaselessly their portion of life eter-
nal, and the sacred synods.
There is the Universe's Guard and Keeper who, wise hath
entered into me the simple.

HYMN X Scroll Up

Continuation of Hymn 9

1How on the Gāyatri the Gāyatri was based; how from the
Trishtup they fashioned the Trishtup forth:
How on the Jagatī was based the Jagatī—they who know this
have won themselves immortal life.
2With Gāyatri he measures out the praise-song, Sāman with
praise-song, triplet with the Trishtup,
The triplet with the two or four-foot measure, and with the
syllable they form seven metres.
3With Jagatī the flood in heaven he stablished, and saw the Sun
in the Rathantara Sāman.
Gāyatri hath, they say, three logs for burning: hence it excels
in majesty and vigour.
4I invocate this Milch-cow good at milking, so that the Milker,
deft of hand, may milk her.
May "Savitar give goodliest stimulation. The caldron is made
hot: he will proclaim it.
5She, Lady of all treasures, hath come hither, yearning in spirit
for her calf, and lowing.
May this Cow yield her milk for both the Asvins, and may she
prosper to our high advantage.
6The Cow hath lowed after her blinking youngling: she licks his
forehead as she lows, to form it.
His mouth she fondly calls to her warm udder, and suckles him
with milk while gently lowing.
7He also snorts, by whom encompassed round the Cow lows as
she closely clings to him who sheds the rain.
She with her shrilling cries hath humbled mortal men, and turn-
ed to lightning, hath stripped off her covering robe.
8That which hath breath and life and speed and motion lies
firmly stablished in the midst of houses.
The living moves by powers of the departed: the immortal is
the brother of the mortal.
9The old hath waked the young Moon from his slumber, who
runs his circling course with many round him.
Behold the God's high wisdom in its greatness: he who died
yesterday to-day is living.
10He who hath made him doth not comprehend him: from him
who saw him surely he is hidden.
He, yet enveloped in his mother's bosom, source of much life,
hath sunk into destruction.
11I saw the Herdsman, him who never stumbles, approaching by
his pathways and departing.
He clothed with gathered and diffusive splendours, within the
worlds continually travels.
12Dyaus is our father, our begetter: kinship is here. This great
Earth is our kin and mother.
Between the wide-spread world-halves is the birth-place. The
Father laid the Daughter's germ within it.
13I bid thee tell me earth's extremest limit, about the Stallion's
genial flow I ask thee;
I ask about the universe's centre, and touching highest heaven
where Speech abideth.
14The earth's most distant limit is this altar: this Soma is the
Stallion's genial humour;
This sacrifice the universe's centre: this Brāhman highest heaven
where Speech abideth.
15What thing I truly am I know not clearly: mysterious, fettered
in my mind I wander.
When the first-born of holy Law approached me, then of this
Speech I first obtain a portion.
16Back, forward goes he, grasped by power inherent, immortal
born the brother of the mortal.
Ceaseless they move in opposite directions: men mark the one
and fail to mark the other.
17Seven germs unripened yet are Heaven's prolific seed: their
functions they maintain by Vishnu's ordinance.
Endued with wisdom through intelligence and thought, present
on every side they compass us about.
18Upon what syllable of holy praise-hymn, as 'twere their highest
heaven, the Gods repose them
Who knows not this, what will he do with praise-hymn? But
they who know it well sit here assembled.
19They, ordering the verse's foot by measure, with the half-verse
arranged each thing that moveth.
Prayer was diffused in many forms three-footed thereby the
world's four regions have their being
20Fortunate mayst thou be with goodly pasture, and may we also
be exceeding wealthy.
Feed on the grass, O Cow, through all the seasons, and coming
hitherward drink limpid water.
21Forming the water-floods the Cow herself hath lowed, one-foot-
ed or two-footed or four-footed, she,
Who hath become eight-footed or acquired nine feet, the uni-
verse's thousand-syllabled Pankti. From her descend in
streams the seas of water.
22Dark the descent: the birds are golden-coloured. Robed in the
floods they fly aloft to heaven.
Again from Order's seat have they descended, and inundated all
the earth with fatness.
23The footless Maid precedeth footed creatures. Who marketh,
Mitra Varuna! this your doing?
The Babe unborn supporteth this world's burthen, supporteth
Right and watcheth Wrong and Falsehood.
24Virāj is Speech, and Earth, and Air's mid-region. He is Praja-
pati, and he is Mrityu.
He is the Lord Imperial of the Sādhyas. He rules what is and
what shall be hereafter. May he make me lord of what is and
shall be.
251 saw from far away the smoke of fuel with spires that rose on
high o'er that beneath it.
The heroes cooked and dressed the spotted bullock. These were
the customs in the days aforetime.
26Three with long tresses show in ordered season. One of them
sheareth when the year is ended.
One with his powers the universe regardeth. Of one the sweep
is seen, but not the figure.
27Speech hath been measured out in four divisions: the Brāhmans
who have wisdom comprehend them.
Three, kept in close concealment, cause no motion. Of Speech
men speak the fourth division only.
28They call him Indra, Mitra, Varuna, Agni; and he is heavenly
nobly-winged Garutmān.
That which is One bards call by many a title: they call It Agni,
Yama, Mātariswan.

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Suggestions for Further Reading

Source: The Hymns of the Atharvaveda. translation by Ralph T.H. Griffith [1895-6]. The text has been reformatted by Jayaram V for Hinduwebsite.com.  As far as the presentation of the material is concerned, this online version does not follow the original book. While all possible care has been taken to reproduce the text accurately, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or the authenticity of the text produced. We strongly recommend to  use this text for general reading and understanding and refer the original edition for serious studies and academic projects .

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