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Müller, Friedrich. Lectures on the Science of Language. Second Series – T11

Lecture XI.
Myths of the Dawn.

After having, in my last Lecture, gathered together
the fragments of the most ancient and most
exalted deity worshipped once by all the members of
the Aryan stock, I shall, to-day, examine some of the
minor deities, in order to find out whether they too
can be referred to the earliest period of Aryan speech
and Aryan thought — whether they too existed before
the Aryans broke up in search of new homes; and
whether their memory was preserved more or less
distinctly in later days in the poems of Homer and
the songs of the Veda. These researches must necessarily
be of a more minute kind, and I have to
ask for your indulgence if I here enter into details
which are of little general interest, but which, nevertheless,
are indispensable, in order to establish a safe
basis for speculations very apt to mislead even the
most cautious inquirer.

I begin with the myth of Hermes, whose name has
been traced back to the Vedic Saramâ. My learned
friend Professor Kuhn, *1 who was the first to analyse
the meaning and character of Saramâ, arrived at
the conclusion that Saramâ meant storm, and that
the Sanskrit word was identical with the Teutonic
462storm, and with the Greek hormḗ. No doubt the
root of Saramâ is sar, to go, but its derivation is
by no means clear, there being no other word in
Sanskrit formed by araa, and with guṇa of the radical
vowel. *2 But admitting that Saramâ meant originally
the runner, how does it follow that the runner was
meant for storm? It is true that Saraṇyu, masc., derived
from the same root, is said to take in later Sanskrit
the meaning of wind and cloud, but it has never
been proved that Saraṇyû, fem., had these meanings.
The wind, whether as vâta, vâyu, marut, pavana, anila,
&c., is always conceived as a masculine in Sanskrit,
and the same applies generally to the other Aryan
languages. This, however, would be no insurmountable
objection, if there were clear traces in the Veda of
Saramâ being endowed with any of the characteristic
qualities of the wind. But if we compare the passages
in which she is mentioned with others in which the
power of the storm is described, we find no similarity
whatever. It is said of Saramâ that she espied the
strong stable of the cows (i. 72, 8), that she discovered
the cleft of the rock, that she went a long
journey, that she was the first to hear the lowing of
the cows, and perhaps that she led the cows out (iii.
31, 6). She did this at the instance of Indra and
the Angiras (i. 62, 3); Bṛihaspati (i. 62, 3) or Indra
(iv. 16, 8) split the rock, and recovered the cows,
which cows are said to give food to the children of
man (i. 62, 3; 72, 8); perhaps, to the offspring of
Saramâ herself (i. 62, 3). Saramâ appears in time
463before Indra (iv. 16, 8), and she walks on the right
path (iv. 45, 7 and 8).

This is about all that can be learnt from the Rig-Veda
as to the character of Saramâ, with the exception
of a hymn in the last book, which contains
a dialogue between her and the Paṇis, who had robbed
the cows. The following is a translation of that
hymn: —

The Paṇis said: ‘With what intention did Saramâ
reach this place? for the way is far, and leads tortuously
away. What was your wish with us? How
was the night? *3 How did you cross the waters of
the Rasâ?’ (1.)

Saramâ said: ‘I come, sent as the messenger of
Indra, desiring, O Paṇis, your great treasures; this
preserved me from the fear of crossing, and thus I
crossed the waters of the Rasâ.’ (2.)

The Paṇis: ‘What kind of man is Indra, O Saramâ,
what is his look, he as whose messenger thou earnest
from afar? Let him come hither, and we will make
friends with him, and then he may be the cowherd of
our cows.’ (3.)

Saramâ: ‘I do not know that he is to be subdued,
for it is he himself that subdues, he as whose messenger
I came hither from afar. Deep streams do not
overwhelm him; you, Paṇis, will lie prostrate, killed
by Indra.’ (4.)

The Paṇis: ‘Those cows, O Saramâ, which thou
desirest, fly about the ends of the sky, O darling.
464Who would give them up to thee without fighting?
for our weapons too are sharp.’ (5.)

Saramâ. ‘Though your words, O Paṇis, be unconquerable, *4
though your wretched bodies be arrow-proof, 5
though the way to you be hard to go,
Bṛihaspati will not bless you for either.’ 6 (6.)

The Paṇis: ‘That store, O Saramâ, is fastened to
the rock; furnished with cows, horses, and treasures.
Paṇis watch it who are good watchers; thou art come
in vain to this bright place.’ (7.)

Saramâ: ‘Let the Rishis come here fired with
Soma, Ayâsya (Indra §7) and the ninefold Angiras;
they will divide this stable 8 of cows; then the Paṇis
will vomit out this speech.’ 9 (8.)

The Paṇis: ‘Even thus, O Saramâ, thou art come
hither driven by the violence of the gods; let us make
thee our sister, do not go away again; we will give
thee part of the cows, O darling.’ (9.)

Saramâ: ‘I know nothing of brotherhood or sisterhood;
Indra knows it and the awful Angiras. They
seemed to me anxious for their cows when I came;
therefore get away from here, O Paṇis, far away.’ **10(10.)

‘Go far away, Paṇis, far away; let the cows come
out straight; the cows which Bṛihaspati found hid
away, Soma, the stones, and the wise Rishis’ (11.)

In none of these verses is there the slightest
indication of Saramâ as the representative of the
465storm, nor do the explanations of Indian commentators,
which have next to be considered, point at all in
that direction.

Sáyaṇa, in his commentary on the Rig-Veda (i. 6,
5), tells the story of Saramâ most simply. The cows,
he says, were carried off by the Paṇis from the world
of the gods and thrown into darkness; Indra, together
with the Maruts, or storms, conquered them.

In the Anukramaṇikâ, the index to the Rigveda-sanhitâ
(x. 103), the story is related in fuller detail. It is
there said that the cows were hidden by the demons,
the Paṇis; that Indra sent the dog of the gods, Saramâ,
to look for the cows; and that a parley took place
between her and the Paṇis, which forms the 108th
hymn of the last book of the Rig-Veda.

Further additions to the story are to be found in
Sâyaṇa's Commentary on iii. 31, 5. The cows are there
called the property of the Angiras, and it was at their
instance that Indra sent the dog, and then, being apprised
of their hiding-place, brought them back to the
Angiras. So, at least, says the commentator, while the
text of the hymn represents the seven sages, the Angiras,
as taking themselves a more active part in effecting
the breach in the mountain. Again, in his commentary
on Rv. x. 108, Sâyaṇa adds that the cows
belonged to Bṛihaspati, the chief-priest of Indra, that
they were stolen by the Paṇis, the people of Vala,
and that Indra, at Bṛihaspati's instance, sent the dog
Saramâ. The dog, after crossing a river, came to the
town of Vala, and saw the cows in a secret place;
whereupon the Paṇis tried to coax her to stay with

As we read the hymn in the text of the Rig-Veda,
the parley between Saramâ and the Paṇis would
466seem to have ended with Saramâ warning the robbers
to flee before the wrath of Indra, Bṛihaspati, and the
Angiras. But in the Bṛihaddevatâ a new trait is added.
It is there said that although Saramâ declined to
divide the booty with the Paṇis, she asked them for a
drink of milk. After having drunk the milk, she recrossed
the Rasâ, and when she was asked after the
cows by Indra, she denied having seen them. Indra
thereupon kicked her with his foot, and she vomited
the milk, and ran back to the Paṇis. Indra then
followed her, killed the demons, and recovered the

This faithlessness of Saramâ is not alluded to in
the hymn, and in another passage, where it is said that
Saramâ found food for her offspring (Rv. i. 62, 3),
Sâyaṇa merely states that Saramâ, before going to
look for the cows, made a bargain with Indra that her
young should receive milk and other food, and then
proceeded on her journey.

This being nearly the whole evidence on which we
must form our opinion of the original conception of
Saramâ, there can be little doubt that she was meant
for the early dawn, and not for the storm. In the
ancient hymns of the Rig-Veda she is never spoken of
as a dog, nor can we find there the slightest allusion
to her canine nature. This is evidently a later
thought, *11 and it is high time that this much-talked-of
greyhound should be driven out of the Vedic Pantheon.
There are but few epithets of Saramâ from
which we might form a guess as to her character.
She is called supadî, having good feet, or quick, an
467adjective which never occurs again in the Rig-Veda.
The second epithet, however, which is applied to her,
subhagâ, fortunate, beloved, is one she shares in common
with the Dawn; nay, which is almost a stereotyped
epithet of the Dawn.

But more than this. Of whom is it so constantly
said, as of Saramâ, that she appears before Indra,
that Indra follows her? It is Ushas, the Dawn, who
wakes first (i. 123, 2); who comes first to the
morning prayer (i. 123, 2). The Sun follows behind,
as a man follows a woman (Rv. i. 115, 2). *12
Of whom is it said, as of Saramâ, that she brings to
light the precious things hidden in darkness? It is
Ushas, the Dawn, who reveals the bright treasures
that were covered by the gloom (i. 123, 6). She
crosses the water unhurt (vi. 64, 4); she lays open
the ends of heaven (i. 92, 11); those very ends
where, as the Paṇis said, the cows were to be found.
She is said to break the strongholds and bring back
the cows (vii. 75, 7; 79, 4). It is she who, like Saramâ,
distributes wealth among the sons of men
(i. 92, 3; 123, 3). She possesses the cows (i. 123, 12,
&c.); she is even called the mother of the cows
(iv. 52, 2). She is said to produce the cows and to
bring light (i. 124, 5); she is asked to open the doors
of heaven, and to bestow on man wealth of cows
(i. 48, 15). The Angiras, we read, asked her for the
cows (vi. 65, 5), and the doors of the dark stable are
said to be opened by her (iv. 51, 2). In one place her
splendour is said to be spreading as if she were
driving forth cattle (i. 92, 12); in another the splendours
of the dawn are themselves called a drove of
468cows (iv. 51, 8; 52, 5). Again, as it was said of
Saramâ, that she follows the right path, the path
which all the heavenly powers are ordained to
follow, so it is particularly said of the Dawn that
she walks in the right way (i. 124, 3; 113, 12). Nay,
even the Paṇis, to whom Saramâ was sent to claim
the cows, are mentioned together with Ushas, the
Dawn. She is asked to wake those who worship the
gods, but not to wake the Paṇis (i. 124, 10). In
another passage (iv. 51, 3) it is said that the Paṇis
ought to sleep in the midst of darkness, while the
Dawn rises to bring treasures for man.

It is more than probable, therefore, that Saramâ
was but one of the many names of the Dawn; it is
almost certain that the idea of storm never entered
into the conception of her. The myth of which we
have collected the fragments is clear enough. It is a
reproduction of the old story of the break of day. The
bright cows, the rays of the sun or the rain-clouds —
for both go by the same name — have been stolen by
the powers of darkness, by the Night and her manifold
progeny. Gods and men are anxious for their return.
But where are they to be found? They are hidden
in a dark and strong stable, or scattered along the
ends of the sky, and the robbers will not restore them.
At last in the farthest distance the first signs of the
Dawn appear; she peers about, and runs with lightning
quickness, it may be, like a hound after a scent, *13
across the darkness of the sky. She is looking
469for something, and, following the right path, she
has found it. She has heard the lowing of the
eows, and she returns to her starting-place with
more intense splendour. *14 After her return there
rises Indra, the god of light, ready to do battle
in good earnest against the gloomy powers, to break
open the strong stable in which the bright cows were
kept, and to bring light, and strength, and life back to
his pious worshippers. This is the simple myth of
Saramâ; composed originally of a few fragments of
ancient speech, such as: ‘the Paṇis stole the cows.’
i. e. the light of day is gone; ‘Saramâ looks for the
cows.’ i. e. the Dawn is spreading; ‘Indra has burst
the dark stable.’ i. e. the sun has risen.

All these are sayings or proverbs peculiar to India,
and no trace of Saramâ has yet been discovered in
the mythological phraseology of other nations. But
let us suppose that the Greeks said. ‘Saramâ herself
has been carried off by Paṇi, but the gods will destroy
her hiding-place and bring her back.’ This, too,
would originally have meant no more than that the
Dawn who disappears in the morning will come back
in the gloaming, or with the light of the next day.
The idea that Paṇi wished to seduce Saramâ from
her allegiance to Indra, may be discovered in the
ninth verse of the Vedic dialogue, though in India it
does not seem to have given rise to any further
myths. But many a myth that only germinates in
the Veda may be seen breaking forth in full bloom in
Homer. If, then, we may be allowed a guess, we
should recognise in Helen, the sister of the Dioskuroi,
470the Indian Saramâ, their names being phonetically
identical, *15 not only in every consonant and vowel, but
even in their accent. Apart from all mythological
considerations, Saramâ in Sanskrit is the same word
as Helena in Greek; and unless we are prepared to
ascribe such coincidences as Dyaus and Zeus, Varuṇa
and Uranos, Sarvara and Cerberus, to mere accident,
we are bound to trace Saramâ and Helene back to
some point from which both could have started in
common. The siege of Troy is but a repetition of
the daily siege of the East by the solar powers that
every evening are robbed of their brightest treasures
in the West. That siege, in its original form, is the
constant theme of the hymns of the Veda. Saramâ,
it is true, does not yield in the Veda to the temptation
of Paṇi, yet the first indications of her faithlessness
are there, and the equivocal character of the
twilight which she represents would fully account for
the further developement of the Greek myth. In the
Iliad, Briseis, the daughter of Brises, is one of the first
captives taken by the advancing army of the West.
In the Veda, before the bright powers reconquer the
light that had been stolen by Paṇi, they are said to
have conquered the offspring of Bṛisaya. That
daughter of Brises is restored to Achilles when his
glory begins to set, just as all the first loves of solar
heroes return to them in the last moments of their
earthly career, 16 And as the Sanskrit name Paṇis
betrays the former presence of an r, 17 Paris himself
471might be identified with the robber who tempted
Saramâ. I lay no stress on Helen calling herself a dog
(II. vi. 344), but that the beautiful daughter of Zeus,
(duhitâ Divaḥ), the sister of the Dioskuroi, was one
of the many personifications of the Dawn, I have never
doubted. Whether she is carried off by Theseus or
by Paris, she is always reconquered for her rightful
husband; she meets him again at the setting of his
life, and dies with him pardoned and glorified. This
is the burden of many a Dawn myth, and it is the
burden of the story of Helen.

But who was Sâramêya? His name certainly approaches
very near to Hermeias, or Hermes, and though
the exact form corresponding to Sâramêya in Greek
would be Hêremeias, yet in proper names a slight
anomaly like this may pass. Unfortunately, however,
the Rig-Veda tells us even less of Sâramêya than of
Saramâ. It never calls any special deity the son of Saramâ,
but allows us to take the name in its appellative
sense, namely, connected with Saramâ or the dawn. If
Hermeias is Sâramêya, it is but another instance of a
mythological germ withering away in one country,
and spreading most luxuriantly in another. Dyaus in
the Veda is the mere shadow of a deity if compared
472with the Greek Zeus; Varuṇa, on the contrary, has
assumed much greater proportions in India than
Uranos in Greece, and the same applies to Vṛitra, as
compared with the Greek Orthros. But though we
know so little about Sâramêya in the Veda, the little
we know of him is certainly compatible with a rudimentary
Hermes. As Sâramêya would be the son
of the twilight, or, it may be, the first breeze of the
dawn, so Hermes is born early in the morning. (Horn.
Hym. Merc. 17.) As the Dawn in the Veda is brought
by the bright Harits, so Hermes is called the leader of
the Charites (ἡγεμῶν Χαρίτων). In the seventh book
of the Rig-Veda (vii. 54, 55) we find a number of
verses strung together as it would seem at random,
to be used as magical formulæ for sending people to
sleep. *18 The principal deity invoked is Vâstoshpati,
which means lord or guardian of the house, a kind
of Lar. In two of these verses, the being invoked,
whatever it be, is called Sâramêya, and is certainly
addressed as a dog, the watch-dog of the house. In
the later Sanskrit also, sâramêya is said to mean dog.
Sâramêya, if it is here to be taken as the name of a
deity, would seem to have been a kind of tutelary
deity, the peep of day conceived as a person, watching
unseen at the doors of heaven during the night,
and giving his first bark in the morning. The
same morning deity would naturally have been supposed
to watch over the houses of man. The verses
addressed to him do not tell us much: —

‘Guardian of the house, destroyer of evil, who
assumest all forms, be to us a helpful friend.’ (1.)

‘When thou, bright Sâramêya, openest thy teeth,
473O red one, spears seem to glitter on thy jaws as thou
swallowest. Sleep, sleep.’ (2.)

‘Bark at the thief, Saramêya, or at the robber, O
restless one! Now thou barkest at the worshippers
of lndra; why dost thou distress us? Sleep, sleep!’ (3.)

It is doubtful whether the guardian of the house
(Vâstoshpati), addressed in the first verse, is intended
to be addressed in the next verses; it is equally
doubtful whether Sâramêya is to be taken as a proper
name at all, or whether it simply means ἑῷος, bright,
or speckled like the dawn. But if Sâramêya is a
proper name, and if he is meant for the guardian of
the house, no doubt it is natural to compare him with
the Hermes propylaeos, prothyraeos, and pronaos, and
with the Hermae in public places and private houses
in Greece. *19 Dr. Kuhn thinks that he can discover in
474Sâramêya the god of sleep, but in our hymn he would
rather seem to be a disturber of sleep. One other coincidence,
however, might be pointed out. The guardian
of the house is called a destroyer of evil, more
particularly of illness, and the same power is sometimes
ascribed to Hermes. (Paus. ix. 22, 2.)

We may admit, then, that Hermes and Sâramêya
started from the same point, but their history diverged
very early. Sâramêya hardly attained a definite personality,
Hermes grew into one of the principal gods
of Greece. While Saramâ, in India, stands on the
threshold that separates the gods of light from the
gods of darkness, carrying messages from one to the
other, and inclining sometimes to the one, sometimes
to the other; Hermes, the god of the twilight, betrays
475his equivocal nature by stealing, though only in fun, the
herds of Apollo, but restoring them without the violent
combat that is waged for the same herds in India
between Indra, the bright god, and Vala, the robber.
In India the Dawn brings the light, in Greece the
Twilight is itself supposed to have stolen it, or to hold
back the light, *20 and Hermes, the twilight, surrenders
the booty when challenged by the sun-god Apollo.
Afterwards the fancy of Greek poets takes free flight,
and out of common clay gradually models a divine
image. But even in the Hermes of Homer and other
poets, we can frequently discover the original traits
of a Sâramêya, if we take that word in the sense of twilight,
and look on Hermes as a male representative of
the light of the morning. He loves Herse, the dew, and
Aglauros, her sister; among his sons is Kephalos, the
head of the day. He is the herald of the gods, so is
the twilight, so was Saramâ, the messenger of Indra.
He is the spy of the night (νυκτὸς ὀπωπητήρ); he sends
sleep and dreams; the bird of the morning, the cock,
stands by his side. Lastly, he is the guide of travellers,
and particularly of the souls who travel on
their last journey; he is the Psychopompos. And
here he meets again, to some extent, with the Vedic
Sâramêya. The Vedic poets have imagined two dogs
belonging to Yama, the lord of the departed spirit.
They are called the messengers of Yama, bloodthirsty,
broad-snouted, brown, four-eyed, pale, and
sâramêya, the dawn-children. The departed is told
to pass them by on his way to the Fathers, who
476are rejoicing with Yama; Yama is asked to protect
the departed from these dogs; and, finally, the
dogs themselves are implored to grant life to the
living and to let them see the sun again. These two
dogs represent one of the lowest of the many conceptions
of morning and evening, or, as we should say,
of Time, unless we comprehend in the same class of
ideas the ‘two white rats.’ which, in the fable, gnaw
the root the culprit laid hold of when, followed by a
furious elephant, he rushed into a well and saw
at the bottom the dragon with open jaws, and the four
serpents in the four corners of the well. The furious
elephant is explained by the Buddhist moralist as
death, the well as the earth, the dragon .is hell, the
four serpents as the four elements, the root of the
shrub as the root of human life, the two white rats as
sun and moon, which gradually consume the life of
man. *21 In Greece, Hermes, a child of the Dawn, with
its fresh breezes, was said to carry off the soul of the
departed; in India, Morning and Evening, 22 like two
dogs, were fabled to watch for their prey, and to lay
hold of those who could not reach the blessed abode
of the Father. Greece, though she recognised Hermes
as the guide of the souls of the departed, did not
degrade him to the rank of a watch-dog of Hades.
477These watch-dogs, Kerberos and Orthros, represent,
however, like the two dogs of Yama, the gloom of
the morning and evening, here conceived as hostile
and demoniacal powers. Orthros is the dark spirit
that is to be fought by the Sun in the morning, the
well-known Sanskrit Vṛitra; but Hermes, too, is said
to rise órthrios, in the gloom of the morning. Kerberos
is the darkness of night, to be fought by Herakles,
the Night herself being called Śarvarî *23 in Sanskrit.
Hermes, as well as Kerberos, is called trikephalos, 24
with three heads, and so is Triśiras, the brother of
Saraṇyû, another name of the Dawn. 25

There is one point still to be considered, namely,
whether, by the poets of the Veda, the dawn is ever
conceived as a dog, and whether there is in the hymns
themselves any foundation for the later legends which
speak of Saramâ as a dog. Professor Kuhn thinks
that the word śúna, which occurs in the Veda, is a
secondary form of śvan, meaning dog, and that such
passages as ‘śunám huvema maghávânam Índram’ (iii.
31, 22) should be translated, ‘Let us invoke the dog,
the mighty Indra.’ If this were so, we might prove,
no doubt, that the Dawn also was spoken of as a dog.
For we read (iv. 3, 11): ‘Śunám náraḥ pári sadan
ushásam.’ ‘Men surrounded the dog, the Dawn.’ But
478does śuna ever mean dog? Never, it would seem, if
used by itself. In all the passages where this word
śunám occurs, it means for the sake of happiness, auspiciously. *26
It is particularly used with verbs meaning
to invoke (hve), to worship (parisad), to pray (îḍ). 27
There is not a single passage where śunám could be
taken for dog. But there are compounds in which
śuna would seem to have that meaning. In viii. 46,
28, Śúnâ-ishitâm most likely means carried by dogs,
and in Śunâsîrau we have the name of a couple of
deities, the former of which is said to be Śuna, the
latter Sîra. Yâska recognises in Śuna a name of
Vâyu, or the wind, in Sîra a name of Aditya, or the
sun. Another authority, Śaunaka, declares Śuna to
be a name of Indra, Sîra a name of Vâyu. Ấśvalâyana
(Śrauta-sûtra, ii. 20) declares that Śunâsîrau
may be meant for Vâyu, or for Indra, or for Indra
and Sûrya together. This shows, at all events, that
the meaning of the two names was doubtful, even
among early native theologians. The fact is that the
Śunâsîrau occur but twice in the Rig-Veda, in a
harvest hymn. Blessings are pronounced on the
plough, the cattle, the labourers, the furrow, and
among the rest the following words are addressed to
the Śunasirau: —

‘O Śunâsîrau, be pleased with this prayer. The
milk which you make in heaven, pour it down upon
this earth.’ (5.) And again: —479

‘May the ploughshares cut the earth with good
luck! May the ploughers with the oxen follow with
good luck! May Parjanya (the god of rain) give
good luck with fat and honey! May the Śunâsîrau
give us good luck!’

Looking at these passages, and at the whole hymn
from which they are taken, I cannot agree with Dr.
Roth, who, in his notes to the Nirukta, thinks that
Sîra may in this compound mean the ploughshare,
and Śuna some other part of the plough. Sîra might
have that meaning, but there is nothing to prove that
śuna ever meant any part of the plough. It will
appear, if we read the hymn more attentively, that its
author clearly addresses the two Śunâsîrau differently
from the plough, the ploughshare, the furrow. They
are asked to send rain from heaven, and they are
addressed together with Parjanya, himself a deity,
the god of rain. There is another verse quoted by
Ấśvalâyana, in which Indra is called Śunâsîra. *28 What
the exact meaning of the word is we cannot tell. It
may be Śuna, as Dr. Kuhn would suggest, the dog,
whether meant for Vâyu or Indra, and Sîra, the sun
or the furrow; or it may be a very old name for the
dog-star, called the Dog and the Śun, and in that case
sîra, or its derivative sairya, would give us the etymon
of Seirios. 29 But all this is doubtful, and there is
nothing, at all events, to justify us in ascribing to śuna
the meaning of dog in any passage of the Veda.

In the course of our in vest i nations as to the original
meaning of Saramâ, we had occasion to allude to
480another name, derived from the same root sar, and to
which the meaning of cloud and wind is equally
ascribed by Professor Kuhn, namely, Saraṇyû, fem.

Where saraṇyú is used as a masculine, its meaning
is by no means clear. In the 61st hymn of the tenth
book it is almost impossible to find a continuous thread
of thought. The verse in which Saraṇyu occurs is
addressed to the kings Mitra and Varuṇa, and it is
said there that Saraṇyu went to them in search of the
cows. The commentator here explains Saraṇyu unhesitatingly
by Yama (saraṇaśîla). In the next verse
Saraṇyu is called a horse, just as Saraṇyû (fem.) is
spoken of as a mare; but he is called the son of him, i. e.,
according to Sâyaṇa, of Varuṇa. *30 In iii. 32, 5, Indra
is said to cause the waters to come forth together with
the Saraṇyus, who are here mentioned very much like
the Angiras in other places, as helpers of Indra in the
great battle against Vṛitra or Vala. In i. 62, 4, the
common epithets of the Angiras (navagva and daśagva)
are applied to the Saraṇyus, and there too Indra is
said to have torn Vala asunder with the Saraṇyus. I
believe, therefore, we must distinguish between the
Saraṇyus in the plural, a name of like import as that
of the Angiras, possibly as that of the Maruts, and
Saraṇyu in the singular, a name of the son of Varuṇa
or of Yama.

Of Saraṇyû, too, as a female deity, we learn but
little from the hymns of the Rig-Veda, and though
we ought always to guard against mixing up the ideas
of the Rishis with those of their commentators, it must
481be confessed that in the case of Saraṇyû we should
hardly understand what is said of her by the Rishis
without the explanations given by later writers, such
as Yâska, Śaunaka, and others. The classical and
often-quoted passage about Saraṇyû is found Rv. x.
17, 2: —

Tvashṭar makes a wedding for his daughter,
thus saying the whole world comes together; the
mother of Yama, being wedded, the wife of the great
Vivasvat has perished.’

‘They hid the immortal from the mortals, making
one like her they have given her to Vivasvat But
she bore the Aśvins when this happened, and Saraṇyû
left two couples *31 behind.’

Yâska (xii. 10) explains: ‘Saraṇyû, the daughter
of Tvashṭar, had twins from Vivasvat, the sun. She
placed another like her in her place, changed her form
into that of a horse, and ran off. Vivasvat, the sun,
likewise assumed the form of a horse, followed her and
embraced her. Hence the two Aśvins were born,
and the substitute (Savarṇâ) bore Manu’ Yâska
likewise states that the first twins of Saraṇyû are by
etymologists supposed to be Madhyama and Mâdhyamikâ
, by mythologists Yama and Yamî; and
he adds at the end, in order to explain the disappearance
of Saraṇyû, that the night vanishes when the
sun rises. This last remark, however, is explained or
corrected by the commentator, 32 who says that Ushas,
482the Dawn, was the wife of Ấditya, the sun, and that
she, and not the night, disappears at the time of sunrise.

Before proceeding further, I shall add a few particulars
from Śaunaka's Bṛihaddevatâ. He says that
Tvashṭar had a couple of children, Saraṇyû and
triśiras (Trikephalos); that he gave Saraṇyû to
Vivasvat, and that she bore him Yama and Yamî:
they were twins, but Yama was the elder of the two.
Then Saraṇyû made a woman like herself, gave her
the children, and went away. Vivasvat was deceived,
and the substitute (Savarṇâ) bore him a child, Manu,
as bright as his father. Afterwards Vivasvat discovered
his mistake, and assuming himself the form of
a horse, rushed after Saraṇyû, and she became in a
peculiar manner the mother of Nâsatya and Dasra,
who are called the two Aśvins, or horsemen.

It is difficult to say how much of these legends is
old and genuine, and how much was invented afterwards
to explain certain mythological phrases occurring
in the Rig-Veda.

Saraṇyû, the water-woman, *33 as the daughter of
Tvashṭar (maker), who is also called Savitar (creator),
Viśvarûpa, having all forms (x. 10, 5) — as the wife
of Vivasvat (also called Gandharva, x. 10, 4), as the
mother of Yama — as hidden by the immortals from
the eyes of mortals — as replaced by another wife, and
again as the mother of the Aśvins — all this is ancient,
and confirmed by the hymns of the Rig-Veda. But the
483legend of Saraṇyû and Vivasvat assuming the form of
horses, may be meant simply as an explanation of the
name of their children, the Aśvins (equini or equites).
The legend of Manu being the son of Vivasvat and
Savarṇâ may be intended as an explanation of the
names Manu Vaivasvata, and Manu Sâvarṇi.

Professor Kuhn has identified Saraṇyû with the
Greek Erinys. With this identification I fully agree.
I had arrived independently at the same identification,
and we had discussed the problem together before
Dr. Kuhn's essay was published. But our agreement
ends with the name; and after having given
a careful, and, I hope, impartial consideration to my
learned friend's analysis, I feel confirmed rather than
shaken in the view which I entertained of Saraṇyû
from the first. Professor Kuhn, adopting in the main the
views of Professor Roth, explains the myth as follows:
— ‘Tvashṭar, the creator, prepares the wedding for
his daughter Saraṇyû, i. e. the fleet, impetuous, dark,
storm-cloud (Sturmwolke), which in the beginning
of all things soared in spacc. He gives to her as
husband Vivasvat, the brilliant, the light of the
celestial heights — according to later views, which, for
the sake of other analogies, I cannot share, the sun-god
himself. Light and cloudy darkness beget two couples
of twins: first, Yama, i. e. the twin, and Yamî the
twin-sister (a word which suggests itself); secondly,
the two AŚvins, the horsemen. But after this the
mother disappears, i. e. the chaotic, storm-shaken dimness;
the gods hide her, and she leaves behind two
couples. To Vivasvat there remains, as his wife, but
one like her, an anonymous woman, not further to be
defined. The latest tradition (Vishṇu Purâṇa, p. 266)
calls her Chhâyâ, shadow, i. e. the myth knows of no
other wife to give to him.’484

Was this the original conception of the myth? Was
Saraṇyû the storm-cloud, which in the beginning of
all things was soaring in infinite space? Is it possible
to form a clear conception of such a being, as described
by Professor Roth and Professor Kuhn? And if not,
how is the original idea of Saraṇyû to be discovered?

There is but one way, -I believe, for discovering the
original meaning of Saṛaṇyû, namely, to find out
whether the attributes and acts peculiar to Saraṇyû
are ever ascribed to other deities whose nature is less
obscure. The first question, therefore, we have to
ask is this — Is there any other deity who is said to
have given birth to twins? There is, namely, Ushas,
the Dawn. We read (iii. 39, 3) in a hymn which describes
the sunrise under the usual imagery of Indra
conquering darkness and recovering the sun: —

‘The mother of the twins has borne the twins; the
tip of my tongue falls, for she approaches; the twins
that are born assume form — they, the conquerors of
darkness, that have come at the foot of the sun.’

We might have guessed from the text itself, even
without the help of the commentator, that the ‘mother
of the twins’ here spoken of is the Dawn; but it may
be stated that the commentator, too, adopts this view.

The next question is, Is there any other deity who is
spoken of as a horse, or rather, as a mare? There is,
namely, Ushas, the Dawn. The sun, no doubt, is the
deity most frequently spoken of as a horse. *34 But
the Dawn also is not only called rich in horses, and
represented as carried by them, but she is herself
compared to a horse. Thus, i. 30, 29, and iv. 52, 2, 35
485the Dawn is likened to a mare, and in the latter
passage she is called at the same time the friend of
the Aśvins. In the Mahâbhârata (Âdiparva, 2, 599)
the mother of the Aśvins is said to have the form of
a mare, vaḍavâ *36

Here, then, we have a couple, the Śun and the
Dawn, that might well be represented in legendary
language as having assumed the form of a horse and
a mare.

The next question is, Who could be called their
children? and in order to answer this question satisfactorily,
it will be necessary to discuss somewhat
fully the character of a whole class of Vedic deities.
It is important to observe that the children of
Saraṇyû are spoken of as twins. The idea of twin
powers is one of the most fertile ideas in ancient
mythology. Many of the most striking phenomena
of nature were comprehended by the ancients under
that form, and were spoken of in their mythic phraseology
as brother and sister, husband and wife,
father and mother. The Vedic Pantheon particularly
is full of deities which are always introduced
in the dual, and they all find their explanation in the
palpable dualism of nature, Day and Night, Dawn
and Gloaming, Morning and Evening, Summer and
Winter, Sun and Moon, Light and Darkness, Heaven
and Earth. All these are dualistic or correlative conceptions.
The two are conceived as one, as belonging to
each other; nay, they sometimes share the same name.
Thus we find Ahorâtre 37 (not in Rig-Veda), day and
486night, but also Ahanî (i. 123, 7), the two days, i. e.
day and night. We find Ushấsânáktâ (i. 122, 2),
dawn and night, Náktoshâsâ (i. 13, 7; 142, 7), night
and dawn, but also Ushấsau (i. 188, 6), the two
dawns, i. e. dawn and night. There is Dyāvâpṛithivî,
heaven and earth (i. 143, 2), Pṛithivîdyâvâ, earth
and heaven (iii. 46, 5), but also Dyâvâ (iii. 6, 4).
Instead of Dyâvâpṛithivî, other compounds such as
Dyâvâkshâmâ (iii. 8, 8), Dyâvâbhûmî (iv. 55, 1), are
likewise met with in the text, Dyuniśâu, day and
night, in the commentary (iii. 55, 15). Now as long
as we have to deal with such outspoken names as
these, there can be little doubt as to the meaning of
the praises bestowed on them, or of the acts which
they are said to have performed. If Day and Night,
or Heaven and Earth, are praised as sisters, even as
twin-sisters, we can hardly call this as yet mythological
487language, though no doubt it may be a beginning
of mythology. Thus we read, i. 123, 7: —

‘One goes away, the other comes near, the two
Ahans (Day and Night) walk together. One of the
two neighbours created darkness in secret, the Dawn
flashed forth on her shining car.’

i. 185, 1: ‘Which of the two is first, which is last?
How are they born, ye poets? Who knows it? These
two support everything that exists; the two Ahans
(Day and Night) turn round like wheels.’ *38

In iv. 55, 3, Dawn and Night (Ushâsânáktâ) are
spoken of as distinct from the two Ahans (Day and

In v. 82, 8, Savitar, the sun, is said to walk before

In x. 39, 12, the daughter of the sky, i. e. the Dawn,
and the two Ahans, Day and Night, are said to be born
when the Aśvins put the horses to their car.

In a similar manner the Dyâvâpṛithivî, Heaven and
Earth, are spoken of as sisters, as twins, as living in
the same house (i. 159, 4), &c.

It is clear, however, that instead of addressing
dawn and gloaming, morning and evening, day and
night, heaven and earth by their right names, and as
feminines, it was possible, nay, natural, to speak of
light and darkness as male powers, and to address the
author of light and darkness, the bringers of day and
night, as personal beings. And so we find, corresponding
to the former couples, a number of correlative
deities, having in common most of the characteristics
of the former, but assuming an independent mythological

The best known are the Aśvins, who are always
spoken of in the dual. Whether aśvin means possessed
of horses, horseman, or descendants of Aśva *39
the suri, or Aśvâ, the dawn, certain it is that the same
conception underlies their name and the names of the
sun and the dawn, when addressed as horses. The
sun was looked upon as a racer, so was the dawn,
though in a less degree, and so were, again, the two
powers which seemed incorporated in the coming and
going of each day and each night, and which were
represented as the chief actors in all the events of
the diurnal play. This somewhat vague but, for this
very reason, I believe, all the more correct character
of the two Aśvins did not escape even the later commentators.
Yâska, in the twelfth book of his Nirukta,
when explaining the deities of the sky, begins with
the two Aśvins. They come first, he says, of all the
celestial gods, they arrive even before sunrise. Their
name is explained in the usual fanciful way of Indian
commentators. They are called Aśvin, Yâska says,
from the root , to pervade; because the one pervades
everything with moisture, the other with light. He likewise
quotes Aurṇavâbha, who derives Aśvin from aśva,
horse. But who are these Aśvins? he asks. ‘Some,’
he replies, ‘say they are heaven and earth, others
day and night, others sun and moon; and the legendarians
maintain that they were two virtuous kings.’

Let us consider next the time when the Aśvins
appear. Yâska places it after midnight, as the light
begins gradually to withstand the darkness of the
night; and this agrees perfectly with the indications to
be found in the Rig-Veda, where the Aśvins appear
489before the dawn, ‘when Night leaves her sister, the
Dawn, when the dark one gives way to the bright
(vii. 71, 1);’ or ‘then one black cow sits among the
bright cows’ (x. 61, 4, and vi. 64, 7).

Yâska seems to assign to the one the overcoming
of light by darkness, to the other the overcoming of
darkness by light. *40 Yâska then quotes sundry
verses to prove that the two Aśvins belong together
(though one lives in the sky, the other in the air, says
the commentator), that they are invoked together,
and that they receive the same offerings. ‘You walk
along during the night like two black goats. 41 When,
O Aśvins, do you come here towards the gods?’

In order to prove, however, that the Aśvins are
likewise distinct beings, another half-verse is added, in
which the one is called Vâsâtya (not Nâsatya), the
son of Night, the other the son of Dawn.

More verses are then quoted from the Rig-Veda —
those before quoted coming from a different source
— where the Aśvins are called ihéhajâtáu, born here
and there, i. e. on opposite sides, or in the air and in
the sky. One is jishṇu, victorious, he who bides in the
air; the other is subhaga, happy, the son of Dyu, or
the sky, and here identified with Âditya or the sun.
Again: ‘Wake the two who harness their cars in
490the morning! Aśvins, come hither, for a draught of
this Soma.’

Lastly: ‘Sacrifice early, hail the Aśvins! Not in
the dreary evening is the sacrifice of the gods. Nay,
some person different from us sacrifices and draws
them away. The sacrificer who comes first is the
most liked.’

The time of the Aśvins is by Yâska supposed to
extend to about sunrise; at that time other gods
appear and require their offerings, and first of all
Ushas, the Dawn. *42 Here, again, a distinction is made
between the dawn of the air (who was enumerated in
the two preceding books, together with the other
mid-air deities), and the dawn of the sky, a distinction
which it is difficult to understand. For though
in the verse which is particularly said to be addressed
to the dawn of the air, she is said to appear in the
eastern half of the rajas, which rajas Yâska takes to
mean mid-air, yet this could hardly have constituted
a real distinction in the minds of the original
poets. ‘These rays of the dawn have made a light
in the eastern half of the welkin; they adorn themselves
with splendour, like strong men unsheathing
their weapons: the bright cows approach the mothers’
(of light, bhâso nirmâtryaḥ).

Next in time is Sûryâ, a female Sûrya, i. e. the
sun as a feminine, or, according to the commentator,
the Dawn again under a different name. In
the Rig-Veda, too, the Dawn is called the wife
of Sûrya (sûryasya yóshâ, vii. 75, 5), and the Aśvins
are sometimes called the husbands of Sûryâ,
491(Rv. iv. 43, 6). It is said in a Brâhmaṇa that
Savitar gave Sûryâ (his daughter?) to King Soma or
to Prajâpati. The commentator explains that Savitar
is the sun, Soma the moon, and Sûryâ the moonlight,
which comes from the sun. This, however,
seems somewhat fanciful, and savours decidedly of
later mythology.

Next in time follows Vṛishâkapâyî the wife of
Vṛishâkapi. Who she is is very doubtful. *43 The
commentary says that she is the wife of Vṛishâkapi,
and that Vṛishâkapi is the sun, so called because he
is enveloped in mist (avaśyâvân, or avaśyâyavân).
Most likely 44 Vṛishâkapâyî is again but another conception
or name of the Dawn, as the wife of the Śun,
who draws up or drinks the vapours from the earth.
Her son is said to be Indra, her daughter-in-law Vâch,
here meant for thunder (?), a genealogy hardly in accordance
with the rest of the hymn from which our
verse is taken, and where Vṛishâkapâyî is rather the
wife than the mother of Indra. Her oxen are clouds
of vapour, which Indra swallows, as the sun might be
said to consume the vapours of the morning. It is
difficult, on seeing the name of Vṛishâkapi, not to
think of Erikapaeos, an Orphic name of Protogonos,
and synonymous with Phanes, Helios, Priapos,
Dionysos; but the original conception of Vṛishâkapi
, bull, irrigator; kapi, ape or tremulous) is not
much clearer than that of Erikapaeos, and we should
only be explaining obscurum per obscurius.

Next in order of the deities of the morning is our
492Saraṇyû, explained simply as dawn, and followed by
Savitar, whose time is said to be when the sky is free
from darkness and covered with rays.

We need not follow any further the systematic
catalogue of the gods as given by Yâska. It is clear
that he knew of the right place of the two Aśvins,
and that he placed the activity of the one at the very
beginning of day, and hence that of the other at the
very beginning of night. He treats them as twins,
born together in the early twilight.

Yâska, however, is not to be considered as an authority,
except if he can be proved to agree with the
hymns of the Rig-Veda, to which we now return.

The preponderating idea in the conception of the
Aśvins in the hymns of the Rig-Veda is that of correlation,
which, as we saw, they share in common with
such twin-deities as heaven and earth, day and
night, &c. That idea, no doubt, is modified according
to circumstances, the Aśvins are brothers, Heaven and
Earth are sisters. But if we remove these outward
masks, we shall find behind them, and behind some
other masks, the same actors, Nature in her twofold
aspect of daily change — morning and evening, light
and darkness — aspects which may expand into those
of spring and winter, life and death; nay, even of good
and evil.

Before we leave the Aśvins in search of other twins,
and ultimately in search of the twin-mother, Saraṇyû,
the following hymn may help to impress on our
minds the dual character of these Indian Dioskuroi.

‘Like the two stones *45 you sound for the same
493object. *46 You are like two hawks rushing toward a
tree with a nest; 47 like two priests reciting their
prayers at a sacrifice; like the two messengers of a
clan called for in many places.’ (1.)

‘Coming early, like two heroes on their cháriots,
like twin-goats, you come to him who has chosen you;
like two women, beautiful in body; like husband and
wife, wise among their people.’ (2.)

‘Like two horns, come first towards us; like two
hoofs, rushing on quickly; like two birds, ye bright
ones, every day, come hither, like two chárioteers, 48
O ye strong ones!’ (3.)

‘Like two ships, carry us across; like two yokes,
like two naves of a wheel, like two spokes, like two
felloes; like two dogs that do not hurt our limbs; like
two armours, protect us from destruction!’ (4.)

‘Like two winds, like two streams, your motion is
eternal; like two eyes, come with your sight towards
us! Like two hands, most useful to the body; like
two feet, lead us towards wealth.’ (5.)

‘Like two lips, speaking sweetly to the mouth; like
two breasts, feed us that we may live. Like two nostrils,
as guardians of the body; like two ears, be
inclined to listen to us.’ (6.)

‘Like two hands, holding our strength together;
494like heaven and earth, drive together the clouds. O
Aśvins, sharpen these songs that long for you, as a
sword is sharpened with a whetstone.’ (7.)

Like the two Aśvins, who are in later times distinguished
by the names of Dasra and Nâsatya, we find
another couple of gods, Indra and Agni, addressed
together in the dual, Indrâgnî, but likewise as Indrâ,
the two Indras, and Agnî, the two Agnis (vi. 60, 1), just
as heaven and earth are called the two heavens, and the
Aśvins the two Dasras, or the two Nâsatyas. Indra
is the god of the bright sky, Agni the god of fire, and
they have each their own distinct personality; but
when invoked together, they become correlative powers
and are conceived as one joint deity. Curiously
enough, they are actually in one passage called aśvinâ *49
(i. 109, 4), and they share several other attributes in
common with the Aśvins. They are called brothers,
they are called twins; and as the Aśvins were called
ihehajâte, born here and there, i. e. on opposite sides,
in the East and in the West, or in heaven and in the
air, so Indra and Agni, when invoked together, are
called ihehamâtarâ, they whose mothers are here and
there (vi. 59, 2). Attributes which they share in
common with the Aśvins are vṛishaṇâ, bulls, or givers
of rain; 50 vritrahaṇâ, destroyers of Vṛitra, 51 or of the
powers of darkness; śambhuvâ, §52 givers of happiness;
495supâṇî, with good hands; vîḷupâṇî *53 with strong hands;
jenyâvasû, with genuine wealth. 54 But in spite of
these similarities, it must not be supposed that Indra
and Agni together are a mere repetition of the Aśvins.
There are certain epithets constantly applied to the
Aśvins (śubhaspatî, vâjinîvasû, sudânû, &c.), which, as
far as I know, are not applied to Indra and Agni
together; and vice versâ (sadaspatî, sahurî). Again,
there are certain legends constantly told of the Aśvins,
particularly in their character as protectors of the
helpless and dying, and resuscitators of the dead,
which are not transferred to Indra and Agni. Yet, as
if to leave no doubt that Indra, at all events, coincides
in some of his exploits with one of the Aśvins
or Nâsatyas, one of the Vedic poets uses the compound
Indra-Nâsatyau, Indra and Nâsatya, which, on account
of the dual that follows, cannot be explained as Indra
and the two Aśvins, but simply as Indra and Nâsatya.

Besides the couple of Indrâgni, we find some other,
though less prominent couples, equally reflecting the
dualistic idea of the Aśvins, namely, Indra and Varuṇa,
and Indra and Vishṇu, and, more important than
either, Mitra and Varuṇa. Instead of Indrâ-Varuṇâ,
we find again Indrâ, 55 the two Indras, and Varuṇâ, the
two Varunas (iv. 41, 1). They are called sudânû (iv.
41, 8); vṛishaṇâ (vii. 82, 2); śambhû (iv. 41, 7);
mahâvasû, (vii. 82, 2). Indrâ-Vishṇû are actually
called dasrâ, the usual name of the Aśvins (vi. 69, 7).
Now Mitra and Varuṇa are clearly intended for day
496and night. They, too, are compared to horses (vi.
67, 4), and they share certain epithets in common
with the twin-gods, sudânû (vi. 67, 2), vṛishaṇau (L
151, 2). But their character assumes much greater
distinctness, and though clearly physical in their first
conception, they rise into moral powers, far superior
in that respect to the Aśvins and to Indrâgnî. Their
physical nature is perceived in a hymn of Vasishṭha
(vii. 63): —

‘The sun, common to all men, the happy, the all-seeing,
steps forth; the eye of Mitra and Varuṇa, the
bright; he who rolls up darkness like a skin.

He steps forth, the enlivener of men, the great
waving light of the sun; wishing to turn round the
same wheel which his horse Etaśa draws, joined to
the team.

Shining forth, he rises from the lap of the dawn,
praised by singers, he, my god Savitar, stepped *56 forth,
who never misses the same place.

He steps forth, the splendour of the sky, the wide-seeing,
the far-aiming, the shining wanderer; surely,
enlivened by the sun, do men go to their tasks and do
their work.

Where the immortals made a walk for him, there
he follows the path, soaring like a hawk. We shall
worship you, Mitra and Varuṇa, when the sun has
risen, with praises and offerings.

Will Mitra, Varuṇa, and Aryaman bestow favour
on us and our kin? May all be smooth and easy to
us! Protect us always with your blessings!’

The ethic and divine character of Mitra and Varuṇa
breaks forth more clearly in the following hymn (vii.
65): —497

‘When the sun has risen I call on you with hymns,
Mitra and Varuṇa, full of holy strength; ye whose
imperishable divinity is the oldest, moving on your
way with knowledge of everything. *57

For these two are the living spirits among the
gods; they are the lords; do you make our fields
fertile. May we come to you, Mitra and Varuṇa,
where they nourish days and nights.

They are bridges made of many ropes leading across
unrighteousness, difficult to cross to hostile mortals.
Let us pass, Mitra and Varuṇa, on your way of right-eousness,
across sin, as in a ship across the water.’

Now if we inquire who could originally be conceived
as the father of all these correlative deities, we
can easily understand that it must be some supreme
power that is not itself involved in the diurnal revolutions
of the world, such as the sky, for instance,
conceived as the father of all things, or some still
more abstract deity, like Prajâpati, the lord of
creation, or Tvashṭar, the fashioner, or Savitar, the
creator. Their mother, on the contrary, must be the
representative of some place in which the twins meet,
and from which they seem to spring together in their
diurnal career. This place may be either the dawn
or the gloaming, the sunrise or the sunset, the East or
the West, only all these conceived not as mere abstractions,
but as mysterious beings, as mothers, as powers
containing within themselves the whole mystery of
life and death brought thus visibly before the eyes of
the thoughtful worshipper. The dawn, which to us
is merely a beautiful sight, was to the early gazer and
thinker the problem of all problems. It was the
498unknown land from whence rose every day those
bright emblems of a divine power which left in the
mind of man the first impression and intimation of
another world, of power above, of order and wisdom.
What we simply call the sunrise, brought before their
eyes every day the riddle of all riddles, the riddle of
existence. The days of their life sprang from that
dark abyss which every morning seemed instinct with
light and life. Their youth, their manhood, their old
age, all were to the Vedic bards the gift of that
heavenly mother who appeared bright, young, unchanged,
immortal every morning, while everything
else seemed to grow old, to change, and droop, and at
last to set, never to return. It was there, in that
bright chamber, that, as their poets said, mornings
and days were spun, or, under a different image,
where morning and days were nourished (x. 37, 2;
vii. 65, 2), where life or time was drawn out (i. 113,
16). It was there that the mortal wished to go to
meet Mitra and Varuṇa. The whole theogony and
philosophy of the ancient world centred in the Dawn,
the mother of the bright gods, of the sun in his
various aspects, of the morn, the day, the spring;
herself the brilliant image and visage of immortality.

It is of course impossible to enter fully into all the
thoughts and feelings that passed through the minds
of the early poets when they formed names for that far
far East from whence even the early dawn, the sun,
the day, their own life, seemed to spring. A new life
flashed up every morning before their eyes, and the
fresh breezes of the dawn reached them like greetings
wafted across the golden threshold of the sky from
the distant lands beyond the mountains, beyond the
clouds, beyond the dawn, beyond ‘the immortal sea
499which brought us hither.’ The Dawn seemed to
them to open golden gates for the sun to pass in
triumph, and while those gates were open their eyes
and their minds strove in their childish way to pierce
beyond the limits of this finite world. That silent
aspect awakened in the human mind the conception
of the Infinite, the Immortal, the Divine, and the
names of dawn became naturally the names of higher
powers. Saraṇyû, the Dawn, was called the mother
of Day and Night, the mother of Mitra and Varuṇa,
divine representatives of light and darkness; the
mother of all the bright gods (i. 113, 19); the face of
Aditi (i. 113, 19). *58 Now, whatever the etymological
meaning of Aditi, 59 it is clear that she is connected with
the Dawn — that she represents that which is beyond
the dawn, and that she was raised into an emblem of the
Divine and the Infinite. Aditi is called the nâbhir amṛitasya,
umbilicus irnmortalitatis, the cord that connects
the immortal and the mortal. Thus the poet exclaims
(i. 24, 1): ‘Who will give us back to the great Aditi (to
the Dawn, or rather to her from whom we came), that
I may see father and mother?’ Âditya, literally the
son of Aditi, became the name, not only of the sun,
but of a class of seven 60 gods, and of gods in general.
Rv. x. 63, 2: ‘You gods who are born of Aditi,
from the water, who are born of the earth, hear my
calling here.’ As everything came from Aditi, she is
called not only the mother of Mitra, Varuṇa, Aryaman,
and of the Âdityas, but likewise, in a promiscuous
500way, the mother of the Rudras (storms), the
daughter of the Vasus, the sister of the Âdityas. *61
‘Aditi is the sky, 62 Aditi the air, Aditi is mother,
father, son; all the gods are Aditi, and the five tribes;
Aditi is what is born, Aditi what will be born.’ 63 In
later times she is the mother of all the gods. §64

In an ‘Essay on Comparative Mythology.’ published
in the ‘Oxford Essays’ of 1856, I collected a number
of legends 65 which were told originally of the Dawn.
Not one of the interpretations there proposed has
ever, as far as I am aware, been controverted by
facts or arguments. The difficulties pointed out
by scholars such as Curtius and Sonne, I hope I
have removed by a fuller statement of my views.
The difficulty which I myself have most keenly felt is
the monotonous character of the dawn and sun legends.
‘Is everything the Dawn? Is everything the Sun?’
This question I had asked myself many times before
it was addressed to me by others. Whether, by the
remarks on the prominent position occupied by the
dawn in the involuntary philosophy of the ancient
world, I have succeeded in partially removing that
objection, I cannot tell, but I am bound to say that
my own researches lead me again and again to the
dawn and the sun as the chief burden of the myths of
the Aryan race.

I will add but one more instance to-day, before
I return to the myth of Saraṇyû. We saw how
501many names of different deities were taken from one
and the same root, dyu or div. I believe that the
root ah *66 which yielded in Sanskrit Ahand (Aghnya,
i. e. Ahnyâ), the Dawn, alian and ahar, 67 day, supplied
likewise the germ of Athênê. First, as to
letters, it is known that Sanskrit h is frequently the
neutral exponent of guttural, dental, and labial soft
aspirates. H is guttural, as in arh and argh, ranh and
rangh, mah and magh. It is dental, as in vṛih and
vṛidh, nah and naddha, saha and sadha, hitâ instead
of dhita, hi (imperative) and dhi. It is labial, as grah
and grabh, nah and nâbhi, luh and lubh. Restricting
our observation to the interchange of h and dh, or vice
, we find, first, in Greek dialects, variations such
as órnichos and órnithos, íchma and íthma. 68 Secondly,
the root ghar or Aczr, which, in # Sanskrit, gives us
502gharma, heat, is certainly the Greek ther, which gives
us thermós, warm. *69 If it be objected that this would
only prove the change of Sanskrit h into Greek ϑ as
an initial, not as a final, we can appeal to Sanskrit
guh, to hide, Greek keúthō; possibly to Sanskrit rah, to
remove, Greek lath. 70 In the same manner, then, the
root ah, which in Greek would regularly appear as ach,
might likewise there have assumed the form ath. As
to the termination, it is the same which we find in Selênê,
the Sanskrit ânâ. Athênê, therefore, as far as letters
go, would correspond to a Sanskrit Ahânâ, which is
but a slightly differing variety of Ahaṇâ, 71 a recognised
name of the dawn in the Veda.

What, then, does Athênê share in common with the
Dawn? The Dawn is the daughter of Dyu, Athênê
the daughter of Zeus. Homer knows of no mother
of Athênê, nor does the Veda mention the name of a
mother of the Dawn, though her parents are spoken of
in the dual (i. 123, 5).

The extraordinary birth of Athênê, though postHomeric,
is no doubt of ancient date, for it seems no
more than the Greek rendering of the Sanskrit phrase
that Ushas, the Dawn, sprang from the head of Dyu,
the mûrdhâ divaḥ, the East, the forehead of the sky.
In Rome she was called Capta, i. e. Capita, head-goddess,
in Messene Koryphasia, in Argos Akria. §72
One of the principal features of the Dawn in the
503Veda is her waking first (i. 123, 2), and her rousing
men from their slumber. In Greece, the cock, the bird
of the morning, is next to the owl, the bird of Athênê.
If Athênê is the virgin goddess, so is Ushas, the dawn,
yuvatiḥ, the young maid, arepasâ tanvâ, with spotless
body. From another point of view, however, husbands
have been allotted both to Athênê and to Ushas,
though more readily to the Indian than to the Greek
goddess. *73 How Athênê, being the dawn, should have
become the goddess of wisdom, we can best learn from
the Veda. In Sanskrit, budh means to wake and to
know; 74 hence the goddess who caused people to wake
was involuntarily conceived as the goddess who caused
people to know. Thus it is said that she drives away
darkness, and that through her those who see little
may see far and wide (i. 113, 5). ‘We have crossed
the frontier of this darkness.’ we read; ‘the dawn
shining forth gives light’ (i. 92, 6). But light
(vayúnâ) has again a double meaning, and means
knowledge much more frequently and distinctly than
light. In the same hymn (i. 92, 9) we read: —

‘Lighting up all the worlds, the Dawn, the eastern,
the seer, shines far and wide; waking every mortal to
walk about, she received praise from every thinker.’

Here the germs of Athênê are visible enough. That
she grew into something very different from the
Indian Ushas, when once worshipped as their tutelary
deity by the people of the Morning-city of Attica,
needs no remark. But though we ought carefully to
watch any other tributary that enters into the later
growth of the bright, heaven-sprung goddess, we need
504not look, I believe, for any other spring-head than the
forehead of the sky, or Zeus.

Curious it is that in the mythology of Italy, Minerva,
who was identified with Athênê, should from the beginning
have assumed a name apparently expressive
of the intellectual rather than the physical character
of the Dawn-goddess. Minerva, or Menerva, *75 is clearly
connected with mens, the Greek menos, the Sanskrit
manas, mind; and as the Sanskrit śiras, Greek kéras,
horn, appears in Latin cervus, so Sanskrit manas,
Greek ménos, in Latin Menerva. But it should be
considered that mâne in Latin is the morning, Mânia,
an old name of the mother of the Lares; 76 that mânare
is specially used of the rising sun; 77 and that Mâtuta,
not to mention other words of the same kin, is the
Dawn. From this it would appear that in Latin the
root man, which in the other Aryan languages is best
known in the sense of thinking, was at a very early
time put aside, like the Sanskrit budh, to express the
revived consciousness of the whole of nature at the
approach of the light of the morning; unless there
was another totally distinct root, peculiar to Latin,
expressive of that idea. The two ideas certainly seem
to hang closely together; the only difficulty being
to find out whether ‘tide awake’ led on to ‘knowing.’
or vice versâ. Anyhow I am inclined to admit
in the name of Minerva some recollection of the idea
expressed in Matuta, and even in promenervare, used
505in the Carmen saliare *78 in the sense of to admonish, I
should suspect a relic of the original power of rousing.

The tradition which makes Apollo the son of
Athênê, 79 though apparently modern and not widely
spread, is yet by no means irrational, if we take Apollo
as the sun-god rising from the brightness of the Dawn.
Dawn and Night frequently exchange places, and
though the original conception of the birth of Apollo
and Artemis was no doubt that they were both children
of the night, Lêtô or Latona, yet even then the place or
the island in which they are fabled to have been born is
Ortygia, afterwards called Delos, or Delos, afterwards
called Ortygia, or both Ortygia and Delos. 80 Now
Delos is simply the bright island; but Ortygia, though
localized afterwards in different places, §81 is the dawn, or
the dawn-land. Ortygia is derived from ortyx, a quail.
The quail in Sanskrit is called vartikâ, i. e. the returning
bird, one of the first birds that return with the
return of spring. The same name, Vartikâ, is given
in the Veda to one of the many beings delivered or revived
by the Aśvins, i. e. by day and night; and I believe
Vartikâ, the returning, is again one of the many
names of the Dawn. The story told of her is very
short. ‘She was swallowed, but she was delivered by
the Aśvins’ (i. 112, 8). ‘She was delivered by them
from the mouth of the wolf’ (i. 117, 6; 116, 14; x.
39, 13). ‘She was delivered by the Aśvins from
agony’ (i. 118, 8). All these are but legendary
repetitions of the old saying. ‘the Dawn or the quail
506comes.’ ‘the quail is swallowed by the wolf.’ ‘the
quail has been delivered from the mouth of the wolf.’
Hence Ortygia, the quail-land, the East. ‘the glorious
birth.’ where Leto was delivered of her solar twins,
and Ortygia, a name given to Artemis, the daughter
of Leto, as born in the East.

The Dawn, or rather the mother of the dawn, and
of all the bright visions that follow in her train, took
naturally a far more prominent place in the religious
ideas of the young world than she who was called
her sister, the gloaming, or the evening, the end of
the day, the approach of darkness, of cold, and, it
may be, of death. In the dawn there lay all the
charms of a beginning and of youth, and, from one
point of view, even the night might be looked upon as
the offspring of the dawn, as the twin of the day. As
the bright child waned, the dark child grew; as
the dark flew away, the bright returned; both were
born of the same mother — both seemed to have
emerged together from the brilliant womb of the
East. It was impossible to draw an exact line, and
to say where the day began and where it ended, or
where the night began and where it ended. When
the light enters into the darkness, as the Brahmans
said, then the one twin appears; when the darkness
enters the light, then the other twin follows.; ‘The
twins come and go.’ this was all the ancient poets had
to say of the racing hours of day and night; it was
the last word they could find, and, like many a good
word of old, this too followed the fate of all living
speech; it became a formula, a saw, a myth.

We know who was the mother of the twins; it was
the dawn, who dies in giving birth to morning and
evening; or, if we adopt the view of Yâska, it was
507the night, who disappears when the new couple is
born. She may be called by all the names of the
dawn, and even the names of the night might express
one side of her character. Near her is the stand
from whence the horses of the sun start on their
diurnal journey; *82 near her is the stable which holds
the cows, i. e. the bright days following one after
the other like droves of cattle, driven out by the Śun
every morning to their pastures, carried off b)r robbers
every night to their gloomy cave, but only to
be surrendered by them again and again, after the
never-doubtful battle of the early twilight.

As the dawn has many names, so her offspring too
is polyonymous; and as her most general name is
that of Yamasûḥ 83 or Twin-mother, so the most
general name of her offspring too is Yamau, the
twins. Now we have seen these twins as men, the
Aśvins, Indra and Agni, Mitra and Varuṇa. We
have seen how the same powers might be conceived
as women, as day and night, and thus we find them
represented not only as sisters, but as twin sisters.
For instance, Rv. iii. 55, 11: —

‘The two twin sisters 84 have made their bodies to
differ; one of them is brilliant, the other dark:
though the dark one and the bright are two sisters,
the great divinity of the gods is one.’

By a mere turn of the mythological kaleidoscope,
these two sisters, day and night, instead of being the
508twin children of the dawn, appear in another poem as
the two mothers of the sun. Rv. iii. 55, 6: —

‘This child which went to sleep in the West walks
now alone, having two mothers, but not led by them;
these are the works of Mitra and Varuṇa, but the
great divinity of the gods is one.’

In another hymn, again, the two, the twins, born
here and there (ihehajâte), who carry the child, are
said to be different from his mother (v. 47, 5), and
in another place one of the two seems to be called the
daughter of the other (iii. 55, 12).

We need not wonder, therefore, that the same two
beings, whatever we like to call them, were sometimes
represented as male and female, as brother and sister,
and again as twin-brother and twin-sister. In that mythological
dialect the day would be the twin-brother,
Yama, the night, the twin-sister, Yamî: — and thus
we have arrived at last at a solution of the myth which
we wished to explain. A number of expressions had
sprung up, such as ‘the twin-mother.’ i. e. the Dawn;
‘the twins.’ i. e. Day and Night; ‘the horse-children.’
or ‘horsemen.’ i. e. Morning and Evening; ‘Saraṇyû
is wedded by Vivasvat.’ i. e. the Dawn embraces the
sky; ‘Saraṇyû has left her twins behind.’ i. e. the
Dawn has disappeared, it is day; ‘Vivasvat takes his
second wife.’ i. e. the sun sets in the evening twilight;
‘the horse runs after the mare.’ i. e. the sun has set.
Put these phrases together, and the story, as told in
the hymn of the Rig-Veda, is finished. The hymn
does not allude to Manu, as the son of Savarṇâ, it
only calls the second wife of Vivasvat by that name,
meaning thereby no more than what the word implies,
a wife similar to his first wife, as the gloaming is
similar to the dawn. The fable of Manu is probably of
509a later date. For some reason or other, Manu, the mythic
ancestor of the race of man, was called Sâvarṇi,
meaning, possibly, the Manu of all colours, i. e. of all
tribes or castes. The name may have reminded the
Brahmans of Savarṇâ, the second wife of Yivaśvat,
and as Manu was called Vaivasvata, the worshipper,
afterwards the son, of Vivasvat, the Manu Sâvarṇi
was naturally taken as the son of Savarṇâ. This,
however, I only give as a guess till some more plausible
explanation of the name and myth of Manu
can be suggested.

But it will be necessary to follow still further the
history of Yama, the twin, properly so called. In
the passage examined before, Saraṇyû is simply called
the mother of Yama, i. e. the mother of the twin,
but his twin-sister, Yamî is not mentioned. Yet
Yamî too, was well known in the Veda, and there is
a curious dialogue between her and her brother, where
she (the night) implores her brother (the day) to
make her his wife, and where he declines her offer
because, as he says, ‘they have called it sin that a
brother should marry his sister’ (x. 10, 12).

The question now arises whether Yama, meaning
originally twin, could ever be used by itself as the
name of a deity? We may speak of twins; and we
saw how, in the hymns of the Veda, several correlative
deities are spoken of as twins; but can we speak of a
twin, and give that name to an independent deity, worshipped
without any reference to its complementary
deity? The six seasons, each consisting of two months,
are called the six twins (Rv. i. 164, 15); but no single
month could therefore properly be called the twin. *85510

Nothing can be clearer than such passages as x. 8, 4:

‘Thou, O Vasu (sun), comest first at every dawn!
thou wast the divider of the two twins.’ i. e. of day and
night, of morning and evening, of light and darkness,
of Indra and Agni, &c.

Let us now look to a verse (Rv. i. 66, 4) where
Yama by itself is supposed to mean the twin, and
more particularly Agni. The whole hymn is addressed
to Agni, fire, or light, in his most general character.
I translate literally: —

‘Like an army let loose, he wields his force, like
the flame-pointed arrow of the shooter. Yama is
born, Yama will be born, the lover of the girls, the
husband of the wives.’

This verse, as is easily seen, is full of allusions,
intelligible to those who listened to the poets, but to
us perfect riddles, to be solved only by a comparison
of similar passages, if such passages can be found.
Now, first of all, I do not take Yama as a name of
Agni, or as a proper name at all. But recollecting
the twinship of Agni and Indra, as representatives of
day and night, I translate: —

‘(One) twin is born, (another) twin will be bom.’ i. e.
Agni, to whom the hymn is addressed, is born, the
morning has appeared; his twin, or, if you like, his
other self, the evening, will be born.

The next words, ‘the lover of the girls.’ ‘the husband
of the wives.’ contain, I believe, a mere repetition
of the first hemistich. The light of the morning, or
the rising sun, is called the lover of the girls, these
girls being the dawns, from among whom he rises.
Thus (i. 152, 4) it is said: ‘We see him coming forth,
the lover of the girls, *86 the unconquerable.’511

Rv. i. 163, 8, the sun-horse, or the sun as horse, is
addressed: —

‘After thee there is the cháriot; after thee, Arvan,
the man; after thee, the cows; after thee, the host of
the girls.’

Here the cows and the girls are in reality but two
representations of the same thing — the bright days,
the smiling dawns.

Rv. ii. 15, 7, we read of Parâvṛij, a name which,
like Chyâvana *87 and other names, is but a mask of the
sun returning in the morning after his decline in the
evening: —

‘He (the old sun), knowing the hiding-place of the
girls, rose up manifest, he the escaper; the lame (sun)
walked, the blind (sun) saw; Indra achieved this when
fired with Soma.’

The hiding-place of the girls is the hiding-place of
the cows, the East, the home of the ever-youthful
dawns; and to say that the lover of the girls 88 is there,
is only a new expression for ‘the twin is born.’

Lover (jâraḥ), by itself, too, is used for the rising
sun: —

Rv. vii. 9, 1: ‘The lover woke from the lap of the

Rv. i. 92, 11: ‘The wife (Dawn) shines with the
light of the lover.’

What, then, is the meaning of ‘the husband of the
wives?’ Though this is more doubtful, I think it not
unlikely that it was meant originally for the evening
sun, as surrounded by the splendours of the gloaming,
512as it were by a more serene repetition of the
dawn. The Dawn herself is likewise called the wife
(iv. 52, 1); but the expression ‘husband of the wives’
is in another passage clearly applied to the sinking sun.
Rv. ix. 86, 32: ‘The husband of the wives approaches
the end.’ *89 If this be the right interpretation. ‘the
husband of the wives’ would be the same as ‘the twin
that is to be born;’ and the whole verse would thus
receive a consistent meaning: —

‘One twin is born (the rising sun, or the morning),
another twin will be born (the setting sun, or the
evening); the lover of the girls (the young sun), the
husband of the wives’ (the old sun).

The following translations of this one line, proposed
by diiFerent scholars, will give an idea of the difficulty
of Vedic interpretation: —

Rosen: ‘Sociatæ utique Agni sunt omnes res natæ,
sociatæ illi sunt nascituræ, Agnis est pronubus puellarum,
maritus uxorum.’

Langlois: ‘Jumeau du passé, jumeau de l'avenir, il
est le fiancé des filles, et l'époux des femmes.’

Wilson: ‘Agni, as Yama, is all that is born; as
Yama, all that will be born: he is the lover of maidens,
the husband of wives.’

Kuhn: ‘The twin (Agni) is he who is born; the
twin is what is to be born.’

Benfey: ‘A born lord, he rules over births; the
suitor of maidens, the husband of wives.’

There is, as far as I know, no other passage in the
Rig-Veda where Yama, used by itself in the sense of
513twin, has been supposed to apply to Agni or the sun.
But there are several passages, particularly in the last
book, in which Yama occurs as the name of a single
deity. He is called king (x. 14, 1); the departed acknowledge
him as king (x. 16, 9). He is together
with the Pitars, the fathers (x. 14, 4), with the Angiras
(x. 14, 3), the Atharvans, Bhrigus (x. 14, 6),
the Vasishṭhas (x. 15, 8). He is called the son of
Vivasvat (x. 14, 5), and an immortal son of Yama
is mentioned (i. 83, 5). Soma is offered to him at
sacrifices (x. 14, 13), and the departed fathers will see
Yama, together with Varuṇa (x. 14, 7), and they will
feast with the two kings (x. 14, 10). The king of
the departed, Yama, is likewise the god of death (x.
165, 4), *90 and two dogs are mentioned who go about
among men as his messengers (x. 14, 12). Yama,
however, as well as his dogs, is likewise asked to bestow
life, which originally could have been no more
than to spare life (x. 14, 14; 14, 12).

Is it possible to discover in this Yama, the god
of the departed, one of the twins? I confess it
seems a most forced and artificial designation; and
I should much prefer to derive this Yama from
yam, to control. Yet his father is Vivasvat, and the
father of the twins was likewise Vivasvat, Shall we
ascribe to Vivasvat three sons, two called the twins,
Yamau, and another called Yama, the ruler? It is
possible, yet it is hardly credible; and I believe it is better
to learn to walk in the strange footsteps of ancient
speech, however awkward they may seem at first. Let
us imagine, then, as well as we can, that Yama, twin,
514was used as the name of the evening, or the setting
sun, and we shall be able perhaps to understand how
in the end Yama came to be the king of the departed
and the god of death.

As the East was to the early thinkers the source of
life, the West was to them Nirṛiti, the exodus, the land
of death. The sun, conceived as setting or dying
every day, was the first who had trodden the path of
life from East to West — the first mortal — the first to
show us the way when our course is run, and our sun
sets in the far West, Thither the fathers followed
Yama; there they sit with him rejoicing, and thither
we too shall go when his messengers (day and night,
see p. 476) have found us out. These are natural
feelings and intelligible thoughts. The question is,
Were they the thoughts and feelings that passed
through the minds of our forefathers when they changed
Yama, the twin-sun, the setting sun, into the ruler of
the departed and the god of death?

That Yama's character is solar, might be guessed
from his being called the son of Vivasvat. Vivasvat,
like Yama, is sometimes considered as sending death.
Rv. viii. 67, 20: ‘May the shaft of Vivasvat, O Âditya,
the poisoned arrow, not strike us before we are

Yama is said to have crossed the rapid waters,
to have shown the way to many, to have first known
the path on which our fathers crossed over (x. 14, 1
and 2). In a hymn addressed to the sun-horse, it is
said that ‘Yama brought the horse, Trita harnessed
him, Indra first sat on him, the Gandharva took hold
of his rein.’ And immediately after, the horse is said
to be Yama, Âditya, and Trita (i. 1(13, 2 and 3).
Again, of the three heavens, two are said to belong to
515Savitar, one to Yama (i. 35, 6). Yama is spoken of
as if admitted to the company of the gods (x. 135, 1).
His own seat is called the house of the gods (x. 135,
7); and these words follow immediately on a verse in
which it is said: ‘The abyss is stretched out in the
East, the outgoing is in the West.’ *91

These indications, though fragmentary, are sufficient
to show that the character of Yama, such
as we find it in the last book of the Rig-Veda,
might well have been suggested by the setting sun,
personified as the leader of the human race, as
himself a mortal, yet as a king, as the ruler of the
departed, as worshipped with the fathers, as the
first witness of an immortality to be enjoyed by the
fathers, similar to the immortality enjoyed by the gods
themselves. That the king of the departed should
gradually have assumed the character of the god of
death, requires no explanation. This, however, is the
latest phase of Yama, and one that in the early portions
of the Veda belongs to Varuṇa, himself, as we saw
before, like Yama, one of the twins.

The mother of all the heavenly powers we have just
examined, is the Dawn with her many names, πολλῶν,
ὀνομάτων μορφὴ μία, the mother of the gods, or
Apyâ yoshâ, the water-wife, Saraṇyû, the running
light, Ahanâ, the bright, Arjunî, the brilliant, Urvaśî,
the wide, &c. Beyond the Dawn, however, another
infinite power was suspected, fot which neither the
language of the Vedic Rishis, nor that of any other
poets or prophets, has yet suggested a fitting name.

If, then, as I have little doubt, the Greek Erînys is
516the same word as the Sanskrit Saraṇyû, *92 it is easy to
see how, starting from a common thought, each deity
assumed its peculiar aspect in India and in Greece.
The Night was conceived by Hesiod as the mother of
War, Strife, and Fraud, but she is likewise called the
mother of Nemesis, or Vengeance. 93 Æschylus calls
the Erinyes the daughters of Night, and we saw before
a passage from the Veda (vii. 61, 5) where the Druh's,
the mischievous powers of night, were said to follow
the sins of man. ‘The Dawn will find you out’ was
a saying but slightly tainted by mythology. ‘The
Erinyes will haunt you’ was a saying which not even
Homer would have understood in its etymological
sense. If the name of Erînys is sometimes applied
to Dêmêtêr, 94 this is because Dêô was Dyâvâ, and
Dêmêtêr, Dyâvâ mâtar, the Dawn, the mother, §95 corresponding
to Dyaush pitar, the sky, the father.
Erinys Demeter, like Saraṇyû, was changed into a
mare, she was followed by Poseidon, as a horse, and
two children were born, a daughter (Despoina), and
Areion. Poseidon, if he expressed the sun rising from
the sea, would approach to Varuṇa, who, in one passage
of the Veda, was called the father of the horse or
of Yama.

And now, after having explained the myth of
Saraṇyû, of her father, her husband, and her children,
in what I think its original sense, it remains to state,
in a few words, the opinions of other scholars who
517have analysed the same myth before, and have arrived
at different conceptions of its original import.
It will not be necessary to enter upon a detailed refutation
of these views, as the principal difference
between these and my own theory arises from the different
points which we have chosen in order to command
a view into the distant regions of mythological
thought. I look upon the sunrise and sunset, on the
daily return of day and night, on the battle between
light and darkness, on the whole solar drama in all
its details that is acted every day, every month, every
year, in heaven and in earth, as the principal subject
of early mythology. I consider that the very idea of
divine powers sprang from the wonderment with
which the forefathers of the Aryan family stared at
the bright (deva) powers that came and went no
one knew whence or whither, that never failed, never
faded, never died, and were called immortal, i. e. unfading,
as compared with the feeble and decaying race
of man. I consider the regular recurrence of phenomena
an almost indispensable condition of their being
raised, through the charms of mythological phraseology,
to the rank of immortals, and I give a proportionately
small space to meteorological phenomena, such as
clouds, thunder, and lightning, which, although causing
for a time a violent commotion in nature and in the
heart of man, would not be ranked together with the
immortal bright beings, but would rather be classed
either as their subjects or as their enemies. It is the
sky that gathers the clouds, it is the sky that thunders,
it is the sky that rains; and the battle that takes place
between the dark clouds and the bright sun, which for
a time is covered by them, is but an irregular repetition
of that more momentous struggle which takes
518place every day between the darkness of the night
and the refreshing light of the morning.

Quite opposed to this, the solar theory, is that proposed
by Professor Kuhn, and adopted by the most
eminent mythologians of Germany, which may be
called the meteorological theory. This has been well
sketched by Mr. Kelly in his ‘Indo-European Tradition
and Folk-lore.’ ‘Clouds.’ he writes, ‘storms,
rains, lightning, and thunder, were the spectacles that
above all others impressed the imagination of the
early Aryans, and busied it most in finding terrestrial
objects to compare with their ever-varying aspect.
The beholders were at home on the earth, and the
things of the earth were comparatively familiar to
them; even the coming and going of the celestial
luminaries might often be regarded by them with the
more composure because, of their regularity; but they
could never surcease to feel the liveliest interest in
those wonderful meteoric changes, so lawless and mysterious
in their visitations, which wrought such immediate
and palpable effects, for good or ill, upon the
lives and fortunes of the beholders. Hence these
phenomena were noted and designated with a watchfulness
and wealth of imagery which made them the
principal groundwork of all the Indo-European mythologies
and superstitions.’

Professor Schwartz, in his excellent essays on Mythology, *96
ranges himself determinately on the same
side: —

‘If, in opposition to the principles which I have
carried out in my book “On the Origin of Mythology,”
519it has been remarked that in the development of the
ideas of the Divine in myths, I gave too much prominence
to the phenomena of the wind and thunderstorms,
neglecting the sun, the following researches
will confirm what I indicated before, that originally the
sun was conceived implicitly as a mere accident in the
heavenly scenery, and assumed importance only in a
more advanced state in the contemplation of nature
and the fprmation of myths.’

These two views are as diametrically opposed as
two views of the same subject can possibly be. The
one, the solar theory, looks to the regular daily revolutions
in heaven and earth as the material out of
which the variegated web of the religious mythology
of the Aryans was woven, admitting only an interspersion
here and there of the more violent aspects of
storms, thunder and lightning; the other, the meteoric
theory, looks upon clouds and storms and other convulsive
aspects of nature as causing the deepest and
most lasting impression on the minds of those early
observers who had ceased to wonder at the regular
movements of the heavenly bodies, and could only
perceive a divine presence in the great strong wind,
the earthquake, or the fire.

In accordance with this latter view, we saw that
Professor Roth explained Saraṇyû as the dark stormcloud
soaring in space in the beginning of all things,
and that he took Vivasvat for the light of heaven. *97
Explaining the second couple of twins first, he took
them, the Aśvins, to be the first bringers of light, preceding
the dawn (but who are they?), while he discovered
520in the first couple, simply called Yama, the
twin-brother, and Yamî, the twin-sister, the first
created couple, man and woman, produced by the
union of the damp vapour of the cloud and the heavenly
light. After their birth he imagines that a new order
of things began, and that hence, their mother — the
chaotic, storm-tossed twilight — was said to have
vanished. Without laying much stress on the fact
that, according to the Rig-Veda, Saraṇyû became
first the mother of Yama, then vanished, then bare
the Aśvins, and finally left both couples of children, it
must be observed that there is not a single word in
the Veda pointing to Yama and Yamî as the first
couple of mortals — as the Indian Adam and Eve — or
representing the first creation of man as taking place
by the union of vapour and light. If Yama had been
the first created of men, surely the Vedic poets, in
speaking of him, could not have passed this over in
silence. Nor is Yima, in the Avesta, represented as
the first man or as the father of mankind. *98 He is
one of the first kings, and his reign represents the
ideal of human happiness, when there was as yet
neither illness nor death, neither heat nor cold; but
no more. The tracing of the further development of
Yima in Persia was one of the last and one of the
most brilliant discoveries of Eugene Burnouf. In his
article, ‘Sur le Dieu Homa.’ published in the ‘Journal
521Asiatique.’ he opened this entirely new mine for researches
into the ancient state of religion and tradition,
common to the Aryans before their schism. He
showed that three of the most famous names in the
epic poetry of the later Persians, Jemshid, Feridún,
and Garshasp, can be traced back to three heroes
mentioned in the Zend-Avesta as the representatives
of three of the earliest generations of mankind, Yima-Kshaêta,
Thraêtana, and Kereśaspa, and that the prototypes
of these Zoroastrian heroes could be found again
in the Yama, Trita, and Kṛiśâśva of the Veda. He
went even beyond this. He showed that, as in Sanskrit
the father of Yama is Vivasvat, the father of
Yima in the Avesta is Vivanghvat. He showed that
as Thraêtana, in Persia, is the son of Athwya, the
patronymic of Trita in the Veda is Aptya. He explained
the transition of Thraêtana into Feridún by
pointing to the Pehlevi form of the name, as given by
Neriosengh, Phredun. Burnouf, again, it was who
identified Zohâk, the tyrant of Persia, slain by Feridun,
whom even Firdusi still knows by the name
of Ash dahâk, with the Aji dahâka, the biting serpent,
as he translates it, destroyed by Thraêtana in the
Avesta. Nowhere has the transition of physical mythology
into epic poetry — nay, history — been so luculently
shown as here. I may quote the words of
Burnouf, one of the greatest scholars that France, so
rich in philological genius, has ever produced: —

‘Il est sans contredit fort curieux de voir une des
divinités indiennes les plus vénérées, donner son nom
au premier souverain de la dynastie ario-persanne;
c'est un des faits qui attestent le plus évidemment
l'intime union des deux branches de la grande famille
522qui s'est étendue, bien des siècles avant notre ère,
depuis le Gange jusqu'à l'Euphrate.’ *99

Professor Roth has pointed out some more minute
coincidences in the story of Jemshid, but his attempt
at changing Yama and Yima into an Indian and
Persian Adam was, I believe, a mistake.

Professor Kuhn was right, therefore, in rejecting
this portion of Professor Roth's analysis. But, like
Professor Roth, he takes Saraṇyû as the storm-cloud,
and though declining to recognise in Vivasvat the
heavenly light in general, he takes Vivasvat as one of
the many names of the sun, and considers their firstborn
child, Yama, to mean Agni, the fire, or rather the
lightning, followed by his twin-sister, the thunder.
He then explains the second couple, the Aśvins, to be
Agni and Indra, the god of the fire and the god of
the bright sky, and thus arrives at the following solution
of the myth: — ‘After the storm is over, and the
darkness which hid the single cloud has vanished,
Savitar (the sun) embraces once more the goddess,
the cloud, who had assumed the shape of a horse
running away. He shines, still hidden, fiery and
with golden arm, and thus begets Agni, fire; he
lastly tears the wedding veil, and Indra, the blue sky,
is born.’ The birth of Manu, or man, he explains as
a repetition of that of Agni, and he looks upon Manu,
or Agni, as the Indian Adam, and not, as Professor
Roth, on Yama, the lightning.

It is impossible, of course, to do full justice to the
speculations of these eminent men on the myth of
Saraṇyû by giving this meagre outline of their views.
523Those who take an interest in the subject must consult
their treatises, and compare them with the interpretations
which I have proposed. I confess that,
though placing myself in their point of view, I cannot
grasp any clear or connected train of thoughts in the
mythological process which they describe. I cannot
imagine that men, standing on a level with our shepherds,
should have conversed among themselves of a
dark storm-cloud soaring in space, and producing by a
marriage with light, or with the sun, the first human
beings, or should have called the blue sky the son of
the cloud because the sky appears when the storm-cloud
has been either embraced or destroyed by the sun.
However, it is not for me to pronounce an opinion, and
I must leave it to others, less wedded to particular
theories, to find out which interpretation is more
natural, more in accordance with the scattered indications
of the ancient hymns of the Veda, and more
consonant with what we know of the spirit of the
most primitive ages of man.524

1* In Haupt's Zeitschrift für Deutsches Alterthum, vi. p. 119

2* See Uṇâdi-Sûtras, ed. Aufrecht, iv. 48. Sármaḥ, as a substantive,
running, occurs Rv. i. 80, 5. The Greek ὁρμή, corresponds
with this word in the feminine, but not with saramâ.

3* Paritakmyâ is explained in the Dictionary of Boehtlingk and
Roth in the sense of random travelling. It never has that sense
in the Veda, and as Saramâ comes to the Paṇis in the morning,
the question, how was the night, is perfectly natural.

4* asenyá, not hurtful, B. R.

5 anishavyá, not to be destroyed, B. R.

6 Ubhayâ, with the accent on the last syllable, is doubtful.

7§ Cf. i. 62, 7, and B. R. s. v.

8 ûrva is called dṛilḥa, Rv. i. 72, 8.

9 Will be sorry for their former speech.

10** varîyaḥ, in das Weite.

11* It probably arose from Sârameya being used as a name or
epithet of the dogs of Yama. See page 476.

12* Comparative Mythology, p. 57. Oxford Essays, 1856.

13* Erigone, the early-born, also called Aletis, the rover, when
looking for the dead body of her father, Ikarius (the father of
Penelope is his namesake), is led by a dog, Maira. See Jacobi's
Mythologie, s. v. Ikarius.

14* Eeriboia, or Eriboia, betrays to Hermes the hiding-place
where Ares was kept a prisoner. Il. v. 385,

15* As to Sk. m = Greek n, see Curtius, Grundzüge, ii. 121.

16 See Cox, Tales of Argos and Thebes, Introduction, p. 90.

17 I state this very hesitatingly, because the etymology of Paṇi
is as doubtful as that of Paris, and it is useless almost to compare
mythological names, without first discovering their etymological
intention. Mr. Cox, in his Introduction to the Tales of Argos
and Thebes
(p. 90), endeavours to show that Paris belongs to the
class of bright solar heroes. Yet if the germ of the Iliad is the
battle between the solar and nocturnal powers, Paris surely belongs
to the latter, and he whose destiny it is to kill Achilles in the
Western gates,
ἤματι τῷ ὅτε κέν σε Πάρις καὶ Φοῖβος Ἀπόλλων
Ἐσθλὸν ἐόντ᾿ὀλέσωσιν ἐνὶ Σκαιῇσι πύλῃσιν.
could hardly have been himself of solar or vernal lineage.

18* In viii. 47, 14, Ushas is asked to carry off sleeplessness.

19* M. Michel Bréal, who has so ably analysed the myth of
Cacus (Hercule et Cacus; Etude de Mythologie Comparée, Paris,
1863), and whose more recent essay, Le Mythe d'Œdipe, constitutes
a valuable contribution to the science of mythology, has
sent me the following note on Hermes as the guardian of houses
and public places, which, with his kind permission, I beg to
submit to the consideration of my readers: —

‘A propos du dieu Hermes, je demande à vous soumettre quelques
rapprochements. II me semble que l'explication d'Hermes
comme dieu du créepuscule n'épuise pas tous les attributs de cette
divinité. Il est encore le protecteur des propriétés, il préside aux
trouvailles: les bornes placées dans les champs, dans les rues et
à la porte des temples, ont recu, au moins en apparence, son nom.
Est-ce bien là le même dieu, ou n'avons-nous pas encore ici un
exemple de ces confusions de mots dont vous avez éte le premier
à signaler l'importance? Voici comment je m'explique cet amalgame.

Nous avons en grec le mot ἔρμα, qui désigne une pierre, une
borne, un poteau; ἑρμίν et ἑρμίς, le pied du lit; ἕρμακες, des tas de
pierres; ἑρμάν, un banc de sable; ἑρματίζω, veut dire je charge
un vaisseau de son lest, et ἑρμογλυφεύς désigne d'une manière
générale un tailleur de pierres. Il est clair que tous ces mots
n'ont rien de commun avec le dieu Hermes.

Mais nous trouvons d'un autre côté le diminutif ἑρμίδιον ou
ἑρμάδιον que les anciens traduisent par “petite statue d'Hermes.”
Je crois que c'est ce mot qui a servi de transition et qui nous a
valu ces pierres grossièrement taillées, dans lesquelles on a voulu
reconnaître le dieu, devenu dès-lors le patron des propriétaires,
malgré sa réputation de voleur. Quant à ἕρμαιον, qui désigne les
trouvailles, je ne sais si c'est à l'idée d'Hermes ou à celle de borne
(comme marquant la limite de la propriété) qu'il faut rapporter
ce mot.

Il resterait encore à expliquer un autre attribut d'Hermes —
celui de l'éloquence. Mais je ne me rends pas bien compte de la
vraie nature du rapport qui unit le mot Hermes avec les mots
comme ἑρμηνεύω, ἐρμηνεία.

J'ai oublié de vous indiquer d'où je fais venir les mots comme
ἔρμα, etc. Je les crois dérivés du verbe εἵργω, ἔργω, en sorte que
ἔρμα serait pour ἕργμα, et de la même famille que ἔρκος. L'esprit
rude est-il primitif? Cela ne me paraît pas certain. Peut-être
ces mots sont-ils de la même famille que le latin arcere, erclum,
ercules, etc.’

20* A similar idea is expressed in the Veda (v. 79, 9), where
Ushas is asked to rise quickly, that the sun may not hurt
her with his light, like a thief.

21* Cf. Stanislas Julien, Les Avadânas, Contes et Apologues
(Paris, 1859), vol. i. p. 190. Dr. Rost, The Chinese and
Japanese Repository
, No. v. p. 217. History of Barlaam and
, ascribed to John of Damascus (about 740 a.d.),
chap. xii.; Fables of Pilpay; Gesta Romanorum (Swane's translation,
vol. ii. No. 88), &c.

22 Day and Night are called the outstretched arms of death,
Kaushîtaki br. ii. 9: atha mṛityor ha vâ etau vrâjabâhû yad

23* See M. M., ‘Ist Bellerophon Vṛitrahan?’ in Kuhn's Zeitschrif,
v. 149.

24 Hermes trikephalos, Gerhard, Gr. Myth. 281, 8.

25 That Kerberos is connected with the Sanskrit śarvarî, night,
was pointed out by me in the Transactions of the Philol. Soc.,
April 14, 1848. Sabala, a corruption of śarvara, is vindicated
as the name of daybreak, syâma, black, as the name of nightfall,
by the Kaushítaki-brahmaṇa, ii. 9 seq. (Ind. Stud. ii. 295.)
This, no doubt, is an artificial explanation, but it shows a vague
recollection of the original meaning of the two dogs.

26* i. 117, 18; iii. 31, 22; iv. 3, 11; 57, 4; 57, 8; vi. 16, 4;
x. 102, 8; 126, 7; 160, 5.

27 Of śván, we find the nominative śvâ (vii. 55, 5; x. 86, 4);
the accusative śvânam (i. 161, 13; ix. 101, 1; 101, 13); the
genitive śúnaḥ (i. 182, 4; iv. 18, 3; viii. 55, 3); the nom. dual
śvânâ (ii. 39, 4), and śvânau, x. 14, 10; 14, 11. Also śvâpadaḥ,
x. 16, 6.

28* Indram vayam śunâsîram asmin yajne havâmahe, sa vâjeshu
pra no svishat.

29 Curtius, Grundzüge, ii. 128, derives Σείριος from svar, which,
however, would have given σύριος or σέριος, rather than σείριος.

30* He is called there jaraṇyu, from a root which in Greek may
have yielded Gorgô. Cf. Kuhn, Zeitschrift, i. 460. Erinys and
Gorgons are almost identified in Greek.

31* One couple, according to Dr. Kuhn, Zeitschrift für Vergleichende
, i. p. 441.

32 Samkshepato Bhâshyakâro ʻrtham nirâha. Âdityasya ʻUshâ
jâyâsa, sâdityodaye ʻntardhîyate. It is possible, of course, to
speak of the dawn both as the beginning of the day, and as the end
of the night.

33* In x. 10, 4, I take Gandharva for Vivasvat, Apyâ Yoshâ
for Saraṇyû, in accordance with Sâyaṇa, though differing from
Professor Kuhn. In the next verse janitâ is not father, but
creator, and belongs to Tvashṭâ savitâ viśvarûpah, the father of
Saraṇyu, or the creator in general in his solar character of

34* Comparative Mythology, p. 82.

35 áśve ná chitre arushi; or better, ásveva chitre.

36* Kuhn, Zeitschrift, i. 523.

37 A distinction ought to be made between ahorâtraḥ, or
ahorâtram, the time of day and night together, a νυχθήμερον,
which is a masculine or neuter, and ahorâtrê, the compound dual
of ahan, day, and râtrî, night, meaning the day and the night, as
they are frequently addressed together. This compound I take
to be a feminine, though, as it can occur in the dual only, it may
also be taken for a neuter, as is done by the commentary to
Pâṇini, ii. 4, 28; 29, but not by Pâṇini himself. Thus A.V. vi.
128, 3, Ahorâtrâbhyâm, as used in the dual, does not mean twice
twenty-four hours, but day and night, just as sûryâchandramasâbhyâm,
immediately after, means sun and moon. The same
applies to A.V. x. 7, 6; 8, 23; Chând. Up. viii. 4, 1; Manu, i. 65;
and other passages given by Boehtlingk and Roth, s. v. In
all of these the meaning, ‘two nycthemerons,’ would be entirely
inappropriate. That ahorâtre was considered a feminine as late as
the time of the Vâjasaneyi-sanhitâ, is shown by a passage xiv. 30,
where ahorâtre are called adhipatnî two mistresses. Ahorâtre
does not occur in the Rig-Veda. Ahorâtrâṇi occurs once in the
tenth book. A passage quoted by B. R. from the Rig-Veda,
where ahorâtrâḥ is said to occur as masc. plur., does not belong
to the Rig-Veda at all.

38* Or like things belonging to a wheel, spokes, &c.

39* Cf. Kṛiśâśvinaḥ, Pâṇ. iv. 2, 66.

40* The words of Yâska are obscure, nor does the commentator
throw much light on them. ‘Tatra yat tamo’ ‘nupravishṭam
jyotishi tadbhâgo madhyamaḥ, tan madhyamasya rûpam. Yaj
jyotis tamasy anupravlshṭam tadbhâgam tadrûpam âdityaḥ (sic).
Tâv etau madhyamottamâv iti svamatam âchâryasya.’ Madhyama
may be meant for Indra, Uttama for Âditya; but in that case the
early Aśvin would be Aditya, the sun, the late Aśvin, Indra.
Dr. Kuhn (l. c. p. 442) takes madhyama for Agni.

41 Petvau is explained by mesha, not by megha, as stated by
Dr. Roth. Cf. Rv. x. 39, 2, ajấ iva.

42* Rv. i. 46, 14: yuvóḥ ushâḥ ánu śríyam párijmanoḥ upá

43* According to Dr. Kuhn, the Evening-twilight, l. c. p. 441,
but without proof.

44 This is the opinion of Durga, who speaks of Ushas, vṛishâkapâyyavasthâyâm.

45* Used at sacrifices for crushing and pressing out the juice of
the Soma plant.

46* Tádídártham is used almost adverbially in the sense of ‘for
the same purpose.’ Thus, Rv. ix. 1, 5, ‘We come to see every
day for the same purpose.’ As to jar, I take it in the usual sense
of sounding, making a noise, and, more particularly, praising. The
stones for pressing out the Soma are frequently spoken of as
themselves praising, while they are being handled by the priests
(v. 37, 2).

47 Nidhi, originally that where something is placed, afterwards

48 Rathyâ. Cf. v. 76, 1.

49* Dr. Kuhn, l. c. p. 450, quotes this passage and others, from
which, he thinks, it appears that Indra was supposed to have
sprung from a horse (x. 73, 10), and that Agni was actually called
the horse (ii. 35, 6).

50 Indra and Agni, i. 109, 4; the Aśvins, i. 112, 8.

51 Indra and Agni, i. 108, 3; the Aśvins, viii. 8, 9 (vṛitrahantamâ).

52§ Indra and Agni, vi. 60, 14; the Aśvins, viii. 8, 19; vi.
62, 5.

53* Indra and Agni, supâṇî, i. 109, 4; the Aśvins, vilupâṇî, vii.
73, 4.

54 Indra and Agni, via. 38, 7; the Aśvins, vii. 74, 3.

55 As in Latin Castores and Polluces, instead of Castor et

56* Chhad as scandere, not as scondere,

57* The last sentence is doubtful.

58* Rv. viii. 25, 3: tấ mâtấ — mahî́ jajâna Aditiḥ. Cf. viii. 101,
15; vi. 67, 4.

59 Boehtlingk and Roth derive aditi from a and diti, and diti
from or do, to cut; hence literally the Infinite. This is
doubtful, but I know no better etymology.

60 Rv. ix. 114, 3: Devâḥ Âdityấḥ yé saptá.

61* Rv. viii. 101, 15.

62 Cf. Rv. x. 63, 3.

63 Rv. i. 89, 10.

64§ See Boehtlingk and Roth, s. v.

65 Eos and Tithonos; Kephalos, Prokris, and Eos; Daphne
and Apollo; Urvaśî and Purûravas; Orpheus and Eurydice;
Charis and Eros.

66* The root ah is connected with root dah, from which Daphne
(cf. , from which aśru, and daś, , from which δάκρυ). Curtius
mentions the Thessalian form, δαύχνη for δάφνη. (Griech. Et. ii.
68). He admits my explanation of the myth of Daphne as the
dawn, but he says, ‘If we could but see why the dawn is changed
into a laurel! Is it not from mere homonymy? The dawn was
called δάφνη, the burning, so was the laurel, as wood that burns
easily; the two, as usual, were supposed to be one.’ See Etym.
p. 250, 20; δαυχμόν εὔκαυστον ξύλον; Hesych. δαυχμόν
ἔνκαυστον ξύλον δάφνης (1. εὔκαυστον ξύλον, δάφνην, Ahrens, Dial.
ii. 532). Legerlotz in Kuhn's Zeitschrift, vii. 292.

67 Is Ἀχιλλεύς, the mortal solar hero, Aharyu? The change
of r into l begins in the Sanskrit Ahalyâ, who is explained by
Kumârila as the goddess of night, beloved and destroyed by Indra
(see M. M.'s History of Sanskrit Literature, p. 530). As Indra
is called ahalyâyai jâraḥ, it is more likely that she was meant for
the dawn. Leuke, the island of the blessed, the abode of heroes
after their death, is called Achillêa. Schol. Pind. Nem. 4, 49.
Jacobi, Mythologie, p. 12. Ἀχαιός might be Ahasya, but
Achîvus points in another direction.

68 Cf. Mehlhorn, Griech. Grammatik, p. 111.

69* See Curtius, Griechische Etymologie, ii. 79.

70 Schleicher, Compendium, § 125, and p. 711. Raumer, Gesammelte
Sprachwissenschaftliche Schriften
, p. 84.

71 On changes like ana and âna, see Kuhn, Herabkunft des
, p. 28.

72§ Gerhard, Griechische Mythologie, § 253, 3 h. Preller,
Römische Mythologie, p. 260, n.

73* Gerhard, Griechische Mythologie, § 267> 3.

74 Rv. i. 29, 4: sasántu tyấḥ árâtnyaḥ bódhantu śûra râtáyaḥ.

75* Preller, Römische Mythologie, p. 258.

76 Varro, L. L. 9, 38, § 61, ed. Müller.

77 Manat dies ab oriente. Varro, L. L. 6, 2, 52, § 4. Manare
solera antiqui dicebant, quum solis orientis radii splendorem jacere
cœpissent. Festus, p. 158, ed. Müller.

78* Festus, p. 205. Paul. Diac. p. 123. Minerva dicta quod
bene moneat.

79 Gerhard, l. c. § 267, 3.

80 Jacobi, p. 574, n.

81§ Gerhard, Griechische Mythologie, § 335, 2.

82* Hence, I believe, the myth of Aśvattha, originally horsestand,
then confounded with aśvattha, ficus religiosa. See, however,
Kuhn, Zeitschrift, i. p. 467.

83 Rv. iii. 39, 3. Yamasûḥ, yamau yamalau sûta iti yamasûr
ushoʻbhimâninî devatâ. Sâ yamâ yamalâv Aśvinâv atroshaḥkâle

84 Yamyấ, a dual in the feminine; cf. v. 47, 5.

85* As to yamau and yamâḥ, see Rv. x. 117, 9; v. 57, 4; x.
13, 2.

86* Sâyaṇa rightly explains kanînâm by ushasâm.

87* In i. 116, 10, it is said that the Aśvins restored the old
Chyavâna to he again the husband of the girls.

88 Pushan is called the lover of his sister, the husband of his
mother (vi. 55, 4 and 5; x. 3, 3: svásâram jâráḥ abhí eti paschất).

89* Nishkṛita, according to B. R., a rendezvous; but in our
passage, the original meaning, to be undone, seems more appropriate.

90* Rv. i. 38, 5. The expression, ‘the path of Yama,’ may be
used in an auspicious or inauspicious sense.

91* Other passages to be consulted, Rv. i. 116, 2; vii. 33, 9; ix.
63, 3, 5; x. 12, 6; 13, 2; 13, 4; 53, 3; 64, 3; 123, 6.

92* The loss of the initial aspirate is exceptional, but, as such,
confirmed by well-known analogies. See Curtius, Griechische
, ii. 253; i. 309.

93 M. M.'s Essay on Comparative Mythology, p. 40.

94 Pausanias, viii. 25; Kuhn, l. c. i. 152.

95§ See Pott, in Kuhn's Zeitschrift, vi. p. 118, n.

96* Der heutige Volksglaube und das alte Heidenthum, 1862
(p. vii.). Der Ursprung der Mythologie, 1860.

97* Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellschaft,
iv. p. 425.

98* Spiegel, Érân, p. 245. ‘According to one account, the happiness
of Jima's reign came to an end through his pride and untruthfulness.
According to the earlier traditions of the Avesta,
Jima does not die, but, when evil and misery begin to prevail on
earth, retires to a smaller space, a kind of garden or Eden,
where he continues his happy life with those who remained true
to him.’

99* On the Veda and Zendavesta, by M. M., p. 31.