miércoles, 7 de julio de 2010

Vedasiras - Yedillian - Dictionary Illustrative of the Mythology, Philosophy

Contenido - Contents

Full text of "Supplement to a Classical dictionary of India: illustrative of the mythology, philosophy, literature, antiquities, arts, manners, customs &c. of the Hindus"

PREFACE | A1 | A2 | B1 | B2 | C | D1 | D2 | E | F | G | H1 | H2 | I | J1 | J2 | K1 | K2 | L | M1 | M2 | O | P1 | P2 | R1 | R2 | S1 | S2 | S3 | T1 | T2 | U | V1 | V2 | Y1 | Y2 |


  • A1 - A - Arundhati
  • A2 - Arvarivat - Az
  • B1 - B - Bhoja Raja
  • B2 - Bhraja - Bz
  • C
  • D1 - D - Danda
  • D2 - Dandaka - Dyutimat
  • E
  • F
  • G
  • H1 - H - Harischandra
  • H2 - Harisrava - Hz
  • I
  • J1 - J - Jrimbhika
  • J2 - Jyestha
  • K1 - K - Kratusthaba
  • K2 - Krauncha - Kz
  • L
  • M1 - M - Margashirsha
  • M2 - Maricha - Mz
  • O
  • P1 - P - Pandu
  • P2 - Pandu o Prana - Py
  • R1 - R - Raivata
  • R2 - Raja - Ry
  • S1 - S - Sampati
  • S2 - Samrat - Sravaka
  • S3 - Sravana - Syu
  • T1 - T - Tungaprastha
  • T2 - Tuni - Tyu
  • U
  • V1 - V - Vedas
  • V2 - Vedasiras - Vyu
  • Y1 - Y - Yedillian


Vedasiras: (sáns. hindú). A sage, the son of Markandya: he married Pivari, and had many children, who constituted the family, or Brahmanical tribe, of Bhargavas, sons of Bhrigu. The most celebrated of these was Usanas, the preceptor of the Daityas.

Vedavati: (sáns. hindú). The vocal daughter of the Rishi Kusadhvaja, spi'uug from him during his constant study of the Veda. She was a damsel of brilliant beauty, but dressed in ascetic garb, and lived in forests on the Himalaya. It was there she was seen by the giant R-avana, in the course of his progress through the world, and he at once became enamoured of her. He enquired who she was, and told her that such an austere life was unsuited to her youth and attractions. As a reason for leading such an ascetic existence she said the gods, gandharvas, &c., wished that she should choose a husband, but her father would give her to no one else than to Vishnu, the lord of the world, whom he desired for his son-in-law.

This resolution provoked Sambhu, king of the Daityas, who slew her father, Kusadhvaja, while sleeping, on which her mother

* Talboys Wheeler History of India, Vol. I, pp. 8-11.

(whose name is not given) after enabracing his body, entered into the fire. Vedavati then proceeds " In order that I may fulfil this desire of my father in respect of Nariyana, I wed him with my heart. Having entered into this engagement, I practice great austerity. Narayana, and no other than he, Purushottama, is my husband. From the desire of obtaining him, I resort to this severe observance." Ravana's passion is not in the least diminished by this explanation, and he urges that it is the old alone who should seek to become distinguished by accumulating merit through austerity; prays that she who is so young and beautiful, shall become his bride; and boasts that he is superior to Vishnu.

She rejoins that no one but he would thus contemn that deity. On receiving this reply, he touches the hair of her head with the tip of his finger. She is greatly incensed, and forthwith cuts off" her hair, and tells him that as he has so insulted her, she cannot continue to live, but will enter into the fire before his eyes. She goes on: " * Since I have been insulted in the forest by thee who art wicked-hearted, I shall be born again for thy destruction. For a man of evil design cannot be slain by a woman; and the merit of my austerity would be lost if I were to launch a curse against thee. But if I have performed, or bestowed, or sacrificed, aught, .

may I be born the virtuous daughter, not produced from the womb, of a righteous man.' Having thus spoken, she entered the blazing fire. Then a shower of celestial flowers fell from every part of the sky. It is she, lord, who (having sesn Vedavati in the Krita age, has been born in the Treta age) as the daughter of the king of the Janakas and (has become) thy bride; for thou art the eternal Vishnu. The mountain-like enemy who was (virtually) destroyed before by her wrath, has now been slain by her, having recourse to thy superhuman energy." On this the commentator remarks: " By this it is signified that Sita was the principal cause of Rivana*s death; but the function of destroying him is ascribed to Râma." On the words " thou art Vishnu," in the preceding verse the same commentator remarks " By this it is clearly affirmed that Sita was Lakshmi. This is what Pai-asara says. In the god's life as Râma, she became Sita, and in his birth as Krishna (she became) Rukmiui-"- 0. S. T., IV., 392.

Veda-vyasas: (sáns. hindú). Arraugers of the Vedas: " In every Dwapara (or third) age, Vishnu, in the person of Vyasa, in order to promote the good of mankind, divides the Veda, which is properly but one, into many portions: observing the limited perseverance, energy, and application of mortals, he makes the Veda fourfold, *to adapt it to their capacities; and the bodily form which he assumes in order to effect that classification, is known by the name of Vedavyasa." - Vishnu Furlina.

Veddah: (sáns. hindú). A wild semi-savage race, residing in the interior of Ceylon. The forest Veddahs dwell in hollow trees or caves, subsist on game which they kill with rudely formed bows and arrows, wandering from jungle to jungle, as the game becomes scarce. They will not hold the slightest intercourse with any natives but those of their own tribe, and their language is said to be unintelligible to all others. The village Veddahs dwell in certain districts, hold but slight intercourse with the other inhabitants of the island, will not intermarry nor mix with them. They can make themselves understood to the Singhalese. Their sole clothing is a strip of cloth which hangs down in front, and is fastened by a coir coid, which passes round their loins. Their hair, beards and whiskers are never shorn or cleansed, but hang down in matted masses. The forest Veddahs are dexterous liuuters, and especially skilful in snaring the wild elephants. The two tribes do not intermarry, as they mutually distrust each other.

The Veddahs generally deposit their dead in the jungle to be devoured by wild animals. They seem to worship the planets ? evil spirits, and spirits of their deceased ancestors. They have their own headmen whom they elect and obey. They use bows and arrows and clubs of iron wood. - Sirr's Ceylon, Vol. II, p.

216. They occupy a district about 90 miles long and 45 broad in the south eastern side of Ceylon, lying between the sea and the base of the Badulla and Oovah hills. They are a remnant of the Yakkos, the aboriginal inhabitants of Ceylon, who, 2000 years ago, after the conquest of the island by Wijuyo and his followers, returned into the wilds as the Kulis in Guzerat, the Bhils in Malwa, the Putu in Cuttack, the Konds in Gondwana, and the Beda.s in My.sore, retired before conquerors. The Bisada*, or 89.

Besadae, which in mediaeval Greek is called Vesadae, are alluded to in the tract of Palladius de Moribus Brachraanorum, written about A. D. 400, and the same name is applied by Ptolemy to a similar race inhabiting northern India. A forest tribe of Mysore, known by the name of Vedas or Redas, formed part of the army of Tippu Sahib. The Veddahs live by hunting and use the bow, in drawing which they employ their hands and their feet. They are omniverous, and eat carrion and vermin, roots, grain, fruit, birds, bats, crows, owls, kites, but refuse the bear, elephant and buffalo.

Their language is a dialect of Singhalese, free from Sanskrit or Pali, but the vocabulary is very limited and they have recourse to gestures and signs. They have no knowledge of God, nor of a future state, and have no temples, idols, altars, prayers or charms, but have a devil worship. They do not bury but cover their dead with leaves in the jungle. They are regarded by the Singhalese as of high descent. - Sir J. E. Tennant.

Vedha: (sáns. hindú). A measure of time; 100 Trutis.

Vedhaka: (sáns. hindú). One of the Narakas; that for the makers of arrows.

Vegavat: (sáns. hindú). An ancient prince of the solar race; the son of Bandhumat.

Vela: (sáns. hindú). The daughter of Meru and wife of Samudra.

Vena: (sáns. hindú). A Chakkra-vartti, or universal emperor; the son of Anga or Tunga. "When he was inaugurated by the Rishis monarch of the earth he caused it to be everywhere proclaimed that no worship should be performed, no oblations offered, no gifts bestowed upon the Brahmans. " I, the king * said he' I am the lord of sacrifice; for who but I, am entitled to the oblations." The Rishis remonstrated without effect; and then says the Vishnu Purâòa, " these pious Munis were filled with wrath, and said let this wicked wretch be slain: and they fell upon the king, and beat him with blades of holy grass, consecrated by prayer, and slew him who had first been destroyed by his impiety toward God,"

According to the Padma Purâòa, Vena commenced his reign auspiciously, but lapsing into the Jain heresy, the sages deposed him, and pummelled him until the Nishada, or progenitor of the wild races, was extracted from his left thigh, and Prithu from his right arm. Being freed from sin by the birth of the Nishada, Vena retired to the banks of the Narmada, where he performed penance in honour of Vishnu, who appeared to him and read him a lecture on the merit of gifts of various kinds, especially at different holy places or Tirthas. After this Vishnu desired Vena to demand a boon, and he solicited that he might be incorporated with the deity; Vishnu told him first to celebrate an Aswamedha, after which the king should become one with himself, and he then disappeared. Prithu enabled his father Vena to consummate the sacrifice by which he was united to Vishnu, and this incident is said to illustrate the efficacy of a son considered as a Tirtha. - mison's Works, HI, 38.

Venu: (sáns. hindú). A Yadava prince, the son of Satajifc.

Vibhishana: (sáns. hindú). The younger brother of the giant Havana; when he and his brothers had practised rigid austerities for a long series of years, Brahma appeared to offer them boons: Vibhishana asked that he might never meditate any unrighteousness. When his elder brother Vaisravana (Kuvera) was expelled from Lanka, Vibhishana followed him to Gandhamadana, where he is said to have dwelt with a white umbrella and white garlands, on the Svebaparvata or white mountain, attended by his four counsellors, and apart iVom his disreputable brothers Kumbhakarna, &c., who, naked, with dishevelled hair and red garlands, frequented the south.

When Hanuman was taken before Ravana, and announced himself as the ambassador of Sugriva, warning the ravisher of Sita that nothing could save him from the vengeance of Râma, Ravana, infuriated, ordered him to be put to death; but Vibhishana reminded his brother that the life of ambassadors was sacred.

On another occasion, after a long altercation, Ravana was so enraged with Vibhishana for persisting in urging the restoration of Sita, that he rose in a fury and kicked him from his seat.

Smarting under this outrage, Vibhishana left Lanka and flew through the air to Kailasa to the court of his brother Kuvera, where Äiva also at that time happened to be present. The latter made known to Vibhishana the divine character of Râma, and directed him to desert Ravana and join Râma's standard, which Vibhishana accordiDgly did. He was at first taken for a spy, but afterwards Râma accepted hira as an ally and embraced him. On the death of Ravana, Vibhishana was installed as Raja of Lanka; he afterwards accompanied Râma and Lakshmana to Ayodhya. - /. £. P., 80-83.

Vibhratra: (sáns. hindú). A king of Hastinapura, the son of Sukriti.

Vibhu: (sáns. hindú). 1, The Indra of the fifth Manwantara; 2, A prince, the grandson of Alarka.

Vibudha: (sáns. hindú). A king of Mithila, the son of Krita.

Vichitra-virya: (sáns. hindú). A prince, the son of Santanu, raja of Hastinapur: " he married Amba and Ambalika, the daughter of the raja of Kasi; and indulging too freely in connubial rites, fell into a consumption of which he died. (Vishnu Purâòa.) See Santanu.

The legend as related in the Mahabharata is slightly different.

Vichitravirya's half brother Bhishma is there said to have gone to Kasi for the purpose of seeing the Raja's daughters, and finding them veiy beautiful he did not wait for the day of the Swayamvara, but seizing the three damsels, placed them in his own chariot, and challenged every Raja present to do him battle. Thus did Bhishma win the daughters of the Raja of Kasi and carry them away in triumph to the city of Hastinapur, that they might become the wives of Vichitra-virya. The widows of Vichitra-virya were afterwards the mothers of Dhritarashtra and Pandu. - (Vidura.)

Vidarbha: (sáns. hindú). l, The only son of Jyamagha and Saivya; he was married to the damsel the father had brought home before his birth.

See Jyamagha; 2, The name of a city, the modern Berar.

Vidhatri: (sáns. hindú). A son of the demi-god Bhrigu, married to Niryati.

Vidmisara: (sáns. hindú). A king of Magadha, the son of Kshatranjas.

Vidura: (sáns. hindú). The brother of Dhritarashtra and Pandu. " Soma, the moon, the progenitor of the lunar race, who reigned at llastinapur, was the child of the Rishi Atri, and father of Budha, who married 11 , or Ida, daughter of the solar prince Ikshvaku, and had by her a son Aila or Pururavas. The latter had a son by Urvasi named Ayus, from whom came Nahusha, the father of Yayati. The latter had two sons, Puru and Yadu, from whom proceeded the two branches of the lunar line. In the line of Yadu we need only mention the last three princes, Sura, Vasudeva, and Krishna, with his brother Balarama. Fifteenth in the other line - that of Puru - came Dushyanta, father of the great Bharata.

Ninth from Bharata came Kuru, and fourteenth from him Santanu, this Santanu had by his wife Satyavati, a son named Vichitra-virya.

Bhishma who renounced the right of succession and took the vow of perpetual celibacy, was the son of Santanu by a foi'mer wife, the goddess Ganga, whence one of his names is Gangeya. Satyavati also had, before her marriage with Santanu, borne Vyasa to the sage Parasara; so that Vichitra-virya, Bhishma and Vyasa were half-brothers: and Vyasa, though he retired into the wilderness to live a life of contemplation, promised his mother that he would place himself at her disposal whenever she required his services.

Satyavati had recourse to him when her son Vichtra-virya died childless, and requested him to pay his addresses to Vichitra-virya's two widows, named Ambika and Ambalika. He consented, and had by them respectively two children, Dhritarashtra who was born blind, and Pandu, who was born with a pale complexion.

When Satavati begged Vyasa to become the father of a third son (who should be without any defect) the elder wife, terrified by Vyasa's austere appearance, sent him one of her slave girls, dressed in her own clothes; and this girl was the mother of Vidura.

Vyasa was so much pleased with this slave-girl that he pronounced her free, and declared that her child Vidura should be eminently wise and good.

Dhritarashtra, Pandu and Vidura, were thus brothers, the sons of Vyasa, the supposed author or compiler of the Mahabharata.

" Vidura is one of the best characters in the Mahabharata, always ready with good advice both for the Pandavas and for his brother Dhritarashtra. His disposition leads him always to take the part of the Pandu princes, and warn them of the evil designs of their cousins." Bhishma promoted the marriage of Vidura with a beautiful slave girl belonging to king Devaka. /. E. P.

Viduratha: (sáns. hindú). 1, A prince; the son of Bhajamana and father of Sura; 2, The son of Suratha, a descendant of Kuru.

Vihanghamas: (sáns. hindú). A class of deities of the eleventh Manwanlara.

Vijaya: (sáns. hindú). l, A prince, the son of Chunchu; 2, A king of Mithila, the son of Jaya; 3, The son of Sanjaya, of the race of Ayus; 4, A son of Jayadratha; 5, One of the Audhra princes.

Vijaya: (sáns. hindú). A daughter of the patriarch Daksha, married to Kriaswa.

Vijitaswa: (sáns. hindú). The eldest son of Prithu, called also Antarddhana, in consequence of having obtained from Indra the power of making himself invisible.

Vikala: (sáns. hindú). A measure of time, six Pranas, Vikesi - The wife of the Rudra Sarva.

Vikranta: (sáns. hindú). One of the Prajapatis.

Vikramaditya: (sáns. hindú). A celebrated Hindu king of Malwa, whose reign began fifty-six years before the Christian era. The ancient city of Ujein was his capital. Vikramaditya had no estate assigned him by his father, and lived for a considerable time with his illegitimate brother Bhurtri at Ujein, of which Bhurtri was governor. A quarrel having occurred between the brothers Vikramaditya left Ujein and travelled in great poverty over Guzerat and other parts of India. On his return to Malwa he found that his brother had resigned all worldly concerns and become a religious mendicant; he therefore assumed charge of the province, and from that period commenced a career which led to the establishment of his power over the greatest part of India.

He is said to have restored the Hindu monarchy to that splendour which it had lost through a succession of weak sovereigns, whose character had encouraged the governors of distant provinces to rebel, and to form the territories committed to their charge into independent states.*

Vikramaditya is described as the greatest monarch of his age, of which there is the most satisfactory proof in the fact that his era is still current throughout Hindustan. He encouraged literature beyond all former example. He invited learned brahmans from every part of India, and rewarded them with magnificent presents*;

* Malcolm's Memoir of Central India, I, 24.

and they have repaid him by investing him with immortality.

They have exhausted the resour(ies of flattery in their attempt to describe the magnitude of his power, and have assured us that without his permission the loadstone had no power over iron, or amber on the chaff of the field. So exemplary was his temperance, that while in the enjoyment of supreme power, he constantly slept on a mat, which, with a water-pot replenished from the spring, formed the whole furniture of his chamber. It is stated that while he extended his patronage to the worship of the gods and goddesses then rising into popularity, he himself continued to profess the old creed, and adored the one infinite and invisible God.*

For the legend of Vikramaditya's birth, see the article Sena in the Appendix.

Vikriti: (sáns. hindú). A king of Chedl, the son of Jimuta.

Vikukshi: (sáns. hindú). One of the hundred sons of Ikshvaku: The V. P.

has the following legend of this prince: - On one of the days of Ashtaka, Ikshvaku being desirous of celebrating ancestral obsequies, ordered Vikukshi to bring him flesh suitable for the offering. The prince accordingly went into the forest and killed many deer and other wild animals for the celebration. Being weary with the chase and hungry, he sat down and ate a hare; after which being refreshed, he carried the rest of the game to his father. Vasishtha, the family priest, was summoned to consecrate the food; but he declared that it was impure in consequence of Vikukshi's having eaten a hare from amongst it, (making it thus, as it were, the residue of his meal.) Vikukshi was therefore abandoned by his offended father, and the epithet Sasdda, hare-eater, was affixed to him by the Guru. But on the death of Ikshvaku, the sovereignty of Ayodhya descended to Vikukshi. The Matsya Purâòa says that Indra was born as Vikukshi, and that Ikshvaku had a hundred and fourteen other sons who were kings of the countries south of Meru; and as many who reigned north of that mountain.

Wilson says that it seems very probable that by these sons of Ikshvaku we are to understand colonies or settlers in various parts of India.

* Marshmau's History of India, I, 20,

Viloman: (sáns. hindú). A Yadava chief, the son of Kapotaroman.

Vimada: (sáns. hindú). 1, A Rishi mentioned in the Rig Veda as on very friendly terms with Indra; 2, A young prince to whom the Asvius brought in a car a bride named Kamadyii, who seems to have beeu the beautiful wife of Purumitra.- 0. S. T., V., 244.

Vimala: (sáns. hindú). One of the sons of Sudyumna after his transformation.

Vimohana: (sáns. hindú). One of the Narakas; the place of bewildering; for the punishment of the thief and the contemner of prescribed observances.

Vinata: (sáns. hindú). A daughter of Daksha, who was marred to Kasyapa and became the mother of Garuda and Aruna. The Vayu adds the metres of the Vedas as the daughters of Vinata.

Vinaya: (sáns. hindú). Good behaviour; a son of Dharma by Lajja, modesty, daughter of Daksha, obviously allegorical.

Vinda: (sáns. hindú). One of the sons of Jayasena, king of Avanti.

Vindhya: (sáns. hindú). The chain of mountains that stretches across Central India; in the Purâòas it is often restricted to the Sathpiira range.

Vindhyasakti: (sáns. hindú). The chief of the Kailakila Yavana kings; a warrior of a mixed race, sprung from a Brahman father and a Kshatriya mother. Kailakila was a city in the Mahratta country.

Wilson is of opinion that the Puraaas refer to a time when the Greek princes, or their Indo-Scythic successors, following the course of the Indus, spread to the upper part of the western coast of the peninsula.

Vindhya-Vasini: (sáns. hindú). An ancient and still celebrated shrine of Durga, a short distance from Mirzapur.

Vindumati: (sáns. hindú). The wife of the Raja Mundhatri.

Vindusara: (sáns. hindú). The son and successor of Chandragupta.

Vinita: (sáns. hindú). One of the sons of the sage Pulastya.

Vipaschit: (sáns. hindú). The Indra of the secoud Manwantara.

Vipra: (sáns. hindú). 1, One of the sons of Dhruva; 2, A king of Magadha, the son of Srutanjaya.

Viprachitti: (sáns. hindú). The king of the Danavas, he was the son of Kasyapa and Danu, and the hero of many legends. He was one of the leaders in the contest between the gods and demons that took place after the churning of the ocean.

Vipritha: (sáns. hindú). A prince of the solar race, the son of Chitrika.

Vipula: (sáns. hindú). A mountain in Ilavrita, forming the western buttress to Meru.

Virabhadra: (sáns. hindú). A formidable being created from the mouth of Äiva, for the purpose of spoiling the sacrifice of Daksha. He is thus described in the Vayu Purâòa.

" A divine being, with a thousand heads, a thousand eyes, a thousand feet; wielding a thousand clubs, a thousand shafts; holding the shell, the discus, the mace, and bearing a blazing bow and battle-axe; fierce and terrific, shining with dreadful splendour, and decorated with the crescent moon; clothed in a tiger's skin dripping with blood, having a capacious stomach, and a vast mouth armed with formidable tusks. His ears were erect; his lips were pendulous; his tongue was lightning; his hand brandished the thunderbolt; flames streamed from his hair; a necklace of pearls wound round his neck; a garland of flame descended on his breast.

Radiant with lustre, he looked like the final fire that consumes the world. Four tremendous tusks projected from a mouth which extended from ear to ear. He was of vast bulk, vast strength, a mighty male and lord, the destroyer of the universe, and like a large fig-tree in circumference; shining like a hundred moons at once; fierce as the fire of love; having four heads, sharp white teeth, and of mighty fierceness, vigour, activity, and courage; glowing with the blaze of a thousand fiery suns at the end of the world; like a thousand undimmed moons; in bulk, like Himadri, Kailasa, or Sumeru, or Mandara, with all its gleaming herbs; bright as the sun of destruction at the end of ages; of irresistible prowess and beautiful aspect; irascible, with lowering eyes, and a countenance burning like fire; clothed in the hide of the elephant and lion, and girt round with snakes; wearing a turban on his head, a moon on his brow; sometimes savage, sometimes mild; having a chaplet of many flowers on his head, anointed with various unguents, adorned with different ornaments and many sorts of jewels, wearing a garland of heavenly Karnikara flowers, and rolling his eyes with rage. Sometimes he danced; sometimes he laughed aloud; sometimes he stood wrapt in meditation; sometimes he trampled upon the earth; sometimes he sang; sometimes he wept repeatedly. And he was endowed with the faculties of wisdom, dispassion, power, penance, truth, endurance, fortitude, dominion, and self-knowledge."

Viraj: (sáns. hindú). A person of a mythical or mystical character. Manu says " Having divided his own substance, the mighty power of Brahma became half male, half female: and from that female he produced Viraj. Know me to be that person whom the male Viraj produced by himself." The Linga and Vayu Purâòa describe the origin of Viraj and Satarupa from Brahma; in the first instance, and in the second, with Manu, who is termed Vairaja, is the son of Viraj. It is also explained allegorically; Viraj being all male animals, Satarupa all female animals.

Viraja: (sáns. hindú). One of the Rajas of India in the Swayambhuva or first Manwantara: he was the son of Tvashtri.

Virajas: (sáns. hindú). l, A son of the sage Paurnamasa; 2, A son of the sage Vasishtha.

Virana: (sáns. hindú). l, A sage, the father of Virani and Asikni; 2, A teacher of the White Yajush.

Virani: (sáns. hindú). The daughter of the above, and mother of the Manu Chakshusa.

Virat: (sáns. hindú). I, One of the Rajas of India in the first Manwantara; the son of Nara; 2, The material universe - Brahmanda.

Virata: (sáns. hindú). The fourth book of the Mahabharata is called VirataParva, as it recounts the adventures of the Pandavas, when, being obliged to live incognito, they journeyed to the court of king Virata, and entered his service in various disguises. Virata's capital was called Matsya, (or sometimes Upaplavya.) There, four months after the arrival of the Pandavas, a great festival was held, at which a number of wrestlers exhibited their prowess.

Bhima then astonished Virata by dashing to the ground and killing the strongest of the wrestlers named Jimuta,

When Susarman, king of Trigarta, made a raid into Virata's territory for the sake of plunder and carried off his cattle, Virata, accompanied by all the Pandavas except Arjuna, invaded Trigarta to recover the property. A great battle was fought and Virata was taken prisoner by Susarman. Bhima, as usual, tore up a tree and prepared to rescue him; but Yudhishthira advised him not to display his strength too conspicuously, lest he should be recognised.

He then took a bow, pursued Susarman, defeated him, released Virata, and recovered the cattle.

Virochana: (sáns. hindú). A Daitya, the son of Prahlada.

Viruddhas: (sáns. hindú). A class of deities in the tenth Manwantara.

Virupa: (sáns. hindú). An ancient raja who reigned somewhere on the banks of the Yamuna, he was the son of Ambarisha.

Virupaksha: (sáns. hindú). One of the eleven Rudras.

Visakha: (sáns. hindú). A sage, one of the sons of Kumara.

Visakha: (sáns. hindú). A lunar mansion in Jaradghavi, in the Central Avashthana.

Visakhayupa: (sáns. hindú). A king of Magadha, the son of Palaka.

Visala: (sáns. hindú). The founder and king of the city of Vaisali; he was the son of Triuaviuda, by the celestial nymph Alambusha.

Visasana: (sáns. hindú). One of the Narakas, for the punishment of the maker of swords, lances and other weapons.

Visoka: (sáns. hindú). One of the eight original properties or perfections of man, called Siddhis; it means exemption alike from infirmity or grief.

Visravas: (sáns. hindú). The son of the great sage Pulastya, and father of Kuvera, the deity of wealth.

Visrutavat: (sáns. hindú). A distinguished prince of the family of Ikshvaku; he was the son of Mahaswat; and took part in the great war.

Vishnapu: (sáns. hindú). In the legends regarding various persons delivered or favoured by the Asvins, it is said " they restored Vishnapu, like a lost animal, to the sight of Visvaka, son of Krishna, their worshipper. The names both of Visvaka and Vishndpu occur in the Rig Veda."- 0. S. T., F., p. 244.

Vishnu: (sáns. hindú). The second person of the mythological Hindu triad, and now the most celebrated and popular of all the gods of India.

But it appears from the Rig- Veda that Indra at that time was regarded as superior to Vishnu, who is there classed with Varuòa, the Maruts, Rudra, Vayu, the luminous deities called Adityas, and, others. *' There is no trace of Vishnu, or anything relating to him in the Institutes of Manu, although the allusions to idolaters and the worship of inferior gods might possibly have some reference to him also." " In the Mahabharata, Vishnu is often identified with the supreme spirit; but while in some portions of this poem - the different parts of which belong to different epochs of Hindu antiquity - he is thus regarded as the most exalted deity; he is again, in others, represented as paying homage to Äiva (q. v.), the third person of the Trimurti, and as acknowledging the superiority of this god over himself. Taking, therefore, the Mahabharata as a whole, he does not occupy, in this epos, the exclusive supremacy which is assigned to him in the Râmâyaòa, and still more in those Purâòas especially devoted to his praise.

" The large circle of myths relating to Vishnu, in the epic poems and Purâòas, is distinguished by a feature which, though not quite absent from the'mythological history of Äiva, especially characterises that of Vishnu. It arose from the idea, that whenever a great disorder, physical or moral, disturbed the world, Vishnu descended * in a small portion of his essence* to set it right, to restore the law, and thus to preserve creation. Such descents of the god are called his Avatdras (from ava and triy descend); and they consist in Vishnu's being supposed to have either assumed the form of some wonderful animal or superhuman being, or to have been born of human parents, in a human form, always, of course, possessed of miraculous properties. Some of these Avataras are of an entirely cosmical character; others, however, are probably based on historical events, the leading personage of which was gradually endowed with divine attributes, until he was regarded as the incarnation of the deity itself. With the exception of the last, all these Avataras belong to the past; the last, however, is yet to come."*

" His ten avataras are: * 1 , The Matsya, or fish. In this avatar, Vishnu descended in the form of a fish to save the pious king Satyavrata, who with the seven Rishis and their wives had taken refuge in the ark to escape the deluge which then destroyed the earth; 2, The Kurma, or Tortoise. In this he descended in the form of a tortoise, for the purpose of restoring to man some of the comforts lost during the flood. To this end he stationed himself at the bottom of the ocean, and allowed the point of the great mountain Mandara to be placed upon his back, which served as a hard axis, whereon the gods and demons, with the serpent Vasuki twisted round the mountain for a rope, churned the waters for the recovery of the amrita or nectar, and fourteen other sacred things; 3, The Varaha, or Boar. In this he descended in the form of a boar to rescue the earth from the power of a demon called ' golden-eyed,' Hiranyaksha. This demon had seized on the earth and carried it with him into the depths of the ocean. Vishnu dived into the abyss, and after a contest of a thousand years slew the monster; 4, The Narasinha, or Man-lion. In this monstrous shape of a creature half-man, half-lion, Vishnu delivered the earth from the tyranny of an insolent demon called Hiranyakasipu; 5, Vamana, or Dwarf. This avatar happened in the second age of the Hindus or Tretayug, the four preceding are said to have occurred in the first or Satyayug; the object of this avatar was to trick Bali out of the dominion of the three worlds. Assuming the form of a wretched dwarf he appeared before the king and asked, as a boon, as much land as he could pace in three steps. This was granted; and Vishnu immediately expanding himself till he filled the world, deprived Bali at two steps of heaven and earth, but in consideration of some merit, left Patala still in his dominion; 6, Parasurama; 7, Râmachandra; 8, Krishna, or according to some Balarama; 9, Buddha. In this avatar, Vishnudescended in the form of a sage for the purpose of making some reform in the religion of the Brahmans, and especially to reclaim them from their proneness to

* Chambers' Encyclopaedia,

animal sacrifice. Many of the Hindus will not allow this to have been an incarnation of their favourite god; 10, Kalki, or White Horse. This is yet to come. Vishnu mounted on a white horse, with a drawn scimitar, blazing like a comet, will, according to prophecy, end this present age, viz., the fourth or Kaliyug, by destroying the world, and then renovating creation by an age of purity."*

" This number and enumeration of Avataras, however, was not at all times the same. The Mahabharata, though also mentioning ten, names successively theHansa-, tortoise-, fish-, boar-, man-lion-, dwarf-, Parasu-Râma-, Kama-, Satvata-, and Kalkin-Avataras.

The Bhagavata-Purâòa speaks of twenty-two Avataras of Vishnu, which, for instance, also comprise Prithu, (q. v.), Dhanvantari, the god of medicine; and Kapila, the reputed founder of the Saukhya (q. v.) philosophy. Other works have twenty-four Avataras, or even call them numberless; but the generally-received Avataras, are those ten mentioned before. "f o Vishnu-loka- Vaikuntha, the lofty world of Vishnu.

Vishnu-Purâòa-" The Vishnu-Purâòa most closely confonns to the definition of a Pancha-lakshana Purâòa, or one which treats of five specified topics. It comprehends them all; and, although it has infused a portion of extraneous and sectarial matter, it has done so with sobriety and with judgment, and has not suffered the fervour of its religious zeal to transport it into very wide deviations from the prescribed path. The legendary tales which it has inserted are few, and are conveniently arranged, so that they do not distract the attention of the compiler from objects of more permanent interest and importance.

The first book of the six, into which the work is divided, is occupied chiefly with the details of creation, primary (Sai'ga) and secondary (Pratisarga); the first explaining how the universe proceeds from Prakriti or eternal crude matter; the second, in what manner the forms of things are developed from the elementary substances previously evolved, or how they re-appear after their

* Williams' English Sanskrit Dictionary. f Chambers' Encyclopaedia.

temporary destruction. Both these creations are periodical; but the termination of the first occurs only at the end of the life of Brahma, when not only all the gods and all other forms are annihilated, but the elements are again merged into primary substance, besides which, one only spiritual being exists. The latter takes place at the end of every Kalpa or day of Brahma, and affects only the forms of inferior creatures, and lower worlds; leaving the substance of the universe entire, and sages and gods unharmed. The explanation of these events involves a description of the periods of time upon which they depend, and which are, accordingly, detailed. Their character has been a source of very unnecessary perplexity to European writers; as they belong to a scheme of chronology wholly mythological, having no reference to any real or supposed history of the Hindus, but applicable, according to their system, to the infinite and eternal revolutions of the universe. In these notions, and in that of the co-eternity of spirit and matter, the theogony and cosmogony of the Purâòas, as they appear in the Vishnu Purâòa, belong to and illustrate systems of high antiquity, of which we have only fragmentary traces in the records of other nations.

The course of the elementary creation is, in the Vishnu, as in other Purâòas, taken from 'the Sankhya philosophy; but the agency that operates upon passive matter is confusedly exhibited, in consequence of a partial adoption of the illusory theory of the Vedanta philosophy, and the prevalence of the Pauranik doctrine of pantheism. However incompatible with the independent existence of Pradhana or crude matter, and however incongruous with the separate condition of pure spirit or Purusha, it is declared, repeatedly, that Vishnu, as one with the supreme being, is not only spirit, but crude matter, and not only the latter, but all visible substance, and Time. He is Purusha, * spirit ;' Pradhana, ' crude matter ;' Vyakta, ' visible form ;' and Kala, ' time.' This cannot but be regarded as a departure from the primitive dogmas of the Hindus, in which the distinctness of the Deity and his works was enunciated; in which, upon his willing the world to be, it was; and in which his interposition in creation, held to be inconsistent with the quiescence of perfection, was explained away by the personification of attributes in action, which afterwards came to be considered as real divinities, Brahma, Vishnu, and Äiva, charged, severally, for a given season, with the creation, preservation, and temporary annihilation of material forms. These divinities are declared to be no other than Vishnu. In Saiva Purâòas, they are, in like manner, identified with Äiva; the Purâòas thus displaying and explaining the seeming incompatibility, of which there are traces in other ancient mythologies, between three distinct hypostases of one superior deity, and the identification of one or other of those hypostases with their common and separate original.

After the world has been fitted for the reception of living creatures, it is peopled by the will-engendered sons of Brahma, the Prajapatis or patriarchs, and their posterity. It would seem as if a primitive tradition of the descent of mankind from seven holy personages had at first prevailed, but that, in the course of time, it had been expanded into complicated, and not always consistent, amplification. How could these Rishis or patriarchs have posterity ? It was necessary to provide them with wives. In order to account for their existence, the Manu Swayambhuva and his wife Satarupa were added to the scheme; or Brahma becomes twofold, male and female; and daughters are then begotten, who are married to the Prajapatis. Upon this basis various legends of Brahma's double nature, some, no doubt, as old as the Vedas, have been constructed. But, although they may have been derived, in some degree, from the authentic tradition of the origin of mankind from a single pair, yet the circumstances intended to give more interest and precision to the story are, evidently, of an allegorical or mystical description, and conduced, in apparently later times, to a coarseness of realization which was neither the letter nor spirit of the original legend. Swayambhuva, the son of the self-born or uncreated, and his wife Satarupa, the hundred-formed or multiform, are, themselves, allegories; and their female descendants, who become the wives of the Rishis, are Faith, Devotion, Content, Intelligence, Tradition, and the like; whilst, amongst their posterity, we have the different phases of the moon and the sacrificial fires. In another creation, the chief source of creatures in the patriarch Daksha (ability,) whose daughters - Virfues, or Passions, or Astronomical Phenomena- are the mothers of all existing things. These legends, perplexed as they appear to he, geem to admit of allowable solution, in the conjecture that the Prajapatis and Kishis were real personages, the authors of the Hindu system of social, moral, and religious obligations, and the first observ ers of the heavens, and teachers of astronomical science.

The regal personages of t|;"e Swayambhuva Manwantara are but few; but they are described, in the outset, as governing the earth in the dawn of society, and as introducing agriculture and civilizatiou. How much of their story rests upon a traditional remembrance of their actions, it would be useless to conjecture; although there is no extravagance in supposing that the- legends relate to a period prior to the full establishment, in India, of the Brahman ical institutions. The legends of Dhruva and Prahhida, which are intermingled with these particulars, are, in all probability, ancient; but they are amplified, in a strain conformable to the Yaishnava purport of this Purâòa, by doctrines and prayeis asserting the identity of Vishnu with the Supreme. It is clear that the stories do not originate with this Purâòa. In that of Prahlada, particularly, circumstances essential to the completeness of the story are only alluded to, not recounted; showing, indisputal)ly, the wi-iter's having availed himself of some prior authoritv for his narration.

The second book opens with a continuation of the kings of the first Manwantara; amongst whom, Bharata is said to have given a name to India, called, after him, Bharata-varsha. This leads to a detail of the geographical system of the Purâòas, with mount Meru, the seven circular continents, nnd their surrounding oceans, to the limits of the world; all of which are mythological fictions, in which there is little reason to imagine that any topographical truths are concealed. With regard to Blutrata or India, the case is diflTerent. The mountains and I'ivers which are named are readily verifiable; and the cities and nations that are particularized may, also, in many instances, be proved to have had a real existence. The list is not a very long one. in the Vislmu Purâòa, and is, probably, abridged from some icore ample detail, like thai whicli.the Mahabharata atiurds., and \vhi(dj, In the hope of suppiying information with respect to a subject yet imperfectly investigated, the ancient political condition of India, I have inserted and elucidated.

The description which this book also contains of the planetary and other spheres, is equally mythological, although occasionally presenting practical details and notions in which there is an approach to accuracy. The concluding legend of Bharata - in his former life, the king so named, but now a Brahman, who acquires true wisdom, and thereby attains liberation - is, palpably, an invention of the compiler, and is peculiar to this Purâòa.

The arrangement of the Vedas and other writings considered sacred by the Hindus, - being, in fact, the authorities of their religious rites and belief, - which is described in the beginning of the third book, is of much importance to the history of Hindu literature and of the Hindu religion. The sage Vyasa is here represented, not as the author, but the arranger or compiler of the Vedas, the Itihasas, and Pumnas. His name denotes his character, meaning the * arranger' or ' distributor ;' and the recurrence of many Vyasas, many individuals who new-modelled the Hindu scriptures, has nothing, in it, that is improbable, except the fabulous intervals by which their labours are separated. The re-arranging, the refashioning, of old materials is nothing more than the progress, of time would be likely to render necessary.

The last recognized compilation is that of Krishna Dwaipayana, assisted by Brahmans who were already conversant with the subjects respectively assigned to them. They were the members of a college, or school, supposed, by the Hindus, to have flourished in a period more remote, no doubt, than the truth, but not at all unlikely to have been instituted at some time prior to the accounts of India which we owe to Greek writers, and in which we see enough of the system to justify our inferring that it was then entire. That there have been other Vyasas and other schools since that date, that Brahmans unknown to fame have remodelled some of the Hindu scriptures, and especially, the Purâòas, cannot reasonably be contested, after dispassionately weighing the strong internal evidence, which all of them afford, of the intermixture of unauthorized and comparatively modern ingredients. But the same internal testimony furnishes proof, equally decisive, of the anterior existence of ancient materials; and it is, therefore, as idle as it is irrational, to dispute the antiquity or authenticity of the greater portion of the contents of the Purâòas, in the face of abundant positive and circumstantial evidence of the prevalence of the doctrines which they teach, the currency of the legends which they narrate, and the integrity of the institutions which they describe, at least three centuries before the Christian era. But the origin and development of their doctrines, traditions, and institutions were not the work of a day; and the testimony that establishes their existence three centuries before Christianity, carries it back to a much more remote antiquity, to an antiquity that is, probably, not surpassed by any of the prevailing fictions,' institutions, or beliefs, of the ancient world.

The remainder of the third book describes the leading institutions of the Hindus, the duties of castes, the obligations of different stages of life, and the celebration of obsequial rites, in a short but primitive strain, and in harmony with the laws of Manu, It is a distinguishing feature of the Vishnu Purâòa, and it is characteristic of its being the work of an earlier period than most of the Purâòas, that it enjoins no sectarial or other acts of supererogation; no Vratas, occasional self-imposed observances; no holydays, no birthdays of Krishna, no nights dedicated to Lakshmi; no sacrifices or modes of worship other than those conformable to the ritual of the Vedas. It contains no Mahatmyas or golden legends, even of the temples in which Vishnu is adored.

The fourth book contains all that the Hindus have of their ancient history. It is a tolerably comprehensive list of dynasties and individuals; it is a barren record of events. It can scarcely be doubted, however, that much of it is & genuine chronicle of persons, if not of occurrences. That it is discredited by palpable absurdities in regard to the longevity of the princes of the earlier dynasties, must be granted; and the particulars preserved of some of them are trivial and fabulous. Still, there is an inartificial simplicity and consistency in the succession of persons, and a possibility and probability in some of the transactions, which give to rliose traditions the eiriblaDce of authenticity, and render it likely, that they are not altogether without foundation. At any rat

Their distribution amongst the several Yugas, undertaken by Sir William Jones, or his Pandits, linds no countenance from the original texts, further than an incidental noticeof the age in which a particular monarch ruled, or the general fact that the dynasties prior to Krishna precede the time of the Great War and the beginning of the Kali age; both which events we are not obliged, with the Hindus, to place five thousand years ago. To that age the solar dynasty of princes offers ninety-three descents, the lunar, but forty-five; though they both commence at the same time. Some names may have been added to the former list, some omitted in the latter; and it seems most likely, that, notwithstanding their synchronous beginning, the princes of the lunar race were subsequent to those of the solar dynasty. They avowedly branched off from the solar line; and the legend of Sudyumna, that explains the connexion, has every appearance of having been contrived for the purpose of referring it to a period more remote than the truth. Deducting, however, from the larger nuinber of princes a considerable proportion, there is nothing to shock probability in supposing, that the Hindu dynasties and their ramifications were spread through an interval of about twelve centuries anterior to the war of the jVIahabharata, and, conjecturing that event to have happened about fourteen centuries before Christianity, thus carrying the commencement of the regal dynasties of India to about two thousand six hundred years before that date. This may, or may not, be too remote; but it is sufficient, in a subject where precision is impossible, to be satisfied with the general impression, that, in the dynasties of kings detailed in the Purâòas, we have a record which, although it cannot fail to have suffered detriment from age, and may have been injured by careless or injudicious compilation, preserves an account, not wholly undeserving of contidence, of the establishment and succcession of regular monarchies, amongst the Hindus, from as early an era, and for as continuous a duration, as any in the credible annals of mankind.

After the date of the great war, the Vishnu Purâòa, in common with those Purâòas which contain similar lists, specifies kings and dynasties with greater precision, and offers political and chronological particulars to which, on the score of probability, there is nothing to object. In truth, their general accuracy has been incontrovertibly established. Inscriptions on columns of stone, on rocks, on coins, deciphered only of late years, through the extraordinary ingenuity and perseverance of Mr. James Prinsep, have verified the names of races and titles of princes- the Gupta and Andhra Kajas, mentioned in the Purâòas - and have placed beyond dispute the identity of Chandragupta and Sandrocoptus; thus giving us a fixed point from which to compute the date of other persons and events. Thus, the Vishnu Purâòa spesifies the interval between Chandragupta and the Great War to be eleven hundred years; and the occurrence of the latter little more than fourteen centuries b. c, remarkably concurs with inferences of the like date from different premises. The historical notices that then follow are considerably confused; but they probably afford an accurate picture of the political distractions of India at the time when they were written: and much of the perplexity arises from the corrupt state of the manuscripts, the obscure brevity of the record, and our total want of the means of collateral illustration.

The fifth book of the Vishnu Purâòa is exclusively occupied with the life of Krishna. This is one of the distinguishing characteristics of the Purâòa, and is one ai'gument against its antiquity.

It is possible, though not yet proved, that Krishna, as an Avatara of Vishnu, is mentioned in an indisputably genuine text of the Vedas. He is conspicuously prominent ii" the Mahabharata, Vmt very contradictorily described there. The part that he usually performs is that of a mere mortal; although the passages are numerous that attach divinity to his person. 'There are, however, no descriptions, in the Mahabharata, of his juvenile frolics, of his sports in Vrindavana, his pastimes with the cow-boys, or even his destruction of the Asuras sent to kill him. These stories have, all, a modern complexion; they do not harmonize with the tone of the ancient legends, which is, generally, grave, and, sometimes, majestic. They are the creations of a puerile taste and grovelling imagination. These chapters of the Vishnu Purâòa offer some difficulties as to their originality. They are the same as those on the same subject in the Brahma Purâòa: they are not very dissimilar to those of the Bhagavata. The latter has some incidents which the Vishnu has not, and may, therefore, be thought to have improved upon the prior narrative of the latter. On the other hand, abridgment is equally a proof of posteriority as amplification.

The simpler style of the Vishnu Purâòa is, however, in favour of its priority; and the miscellaneous composition of the Brahma Purâòa renders it likely to have borrowed these chapters from the Vishnu. The life of Krishna in the Hari Vamsa and the Brahma Vaivarta are, indisputably, of later date.

The last book contains an account of the dissolution of the world, in both its major and minor cataclysms; and, in the particulars of the end of all things by fire and water, as well as in the principle of their perpetual renovation, presents a faithful exhibition of opinions that were general in the ancient world. The metaphysical annihilation of the universe, by the release of the spirit from bodily existence, offers, as already remarked, other analogies to doctrines and practices taught by Pythagoras and Plato, and by the Platonic Christians of later days.

The Vishnu Purâòa has kept very clear of particulars from which an approximation of its date may be conjectured. No place is described of which the sacredness has any known limit, nor any work cited of probable recent composition. The Vedas, the Purâòas, other works forming the body of Sanskrit literature, are named; and so is the Mahabharata, to which, therefore, it is subsequent. Both Bauddhas and Jainas are adverted to. It was, therefore, written before the former had disappeared. But they existed, in some parts of India, as late as the twelfth century, at least; and it is probable that the Purâòa was compiled before that period. The Gupta kings reigned in the seventh century.

The historical record of the Purâòa which mentions them was, therefore, later; and there seems little doubt that the same alludes to the first incursions of the Mohammedans, which took place in the eighth century; which brings it still lower. In describing the latter dynasties, some, if not all, of which were, no doubt, contemporary, they are described as reigning, altogether, one thousand seven hundred and ninety-six years. Why this duration should have been chosen does not appear; unless, in conjunction with the number of years which are said to have elapsed between the Great War and the last of the Andhra dynasty, which preceded these different races, and which amounted to two thousand three hundred and fifty, the compiler was influenced by the actual date at which he wrote. The aggregate of the two periods would be the Kill year 4146, equivalent to a. d. 1045. There are some variety and indistinctness in the enumeration of the periods which compose this total: but the date which results from it is not unlikely to be an approximation to that of the Vishnu Purâòa." - Wilson's Works, Vol. VI, 102-112.

Visva: (sáns. hindú). A daughter of the patriarch Daksha, who was married to Dharma and became the mother of the Visvadevas.

Visvabhavana: (sáns. hindú). A name of Vishnu, as creator of the universe; meaning one with crude nature.

Visvachi: (sáns. hindú). One of the Daiviki Apsarasas, or divine nymphs who engage in the interruption of the penances of holy sages.

Visvadevas: (sáns. hindú). A class of deities to whom sacrifices are daily offered. The worship of the Visvadevas forms a part of the general Sraddhas, and of the daily sacrifices of the householder.

According to the Vayu this was a privilege conferred on them by Brahma and the Pitris, as a reward for religious austerities practised by them upon Himalaya. Their introduction as a specific class seems to have originated in the custom of sacrificing to the gods collectively, or to all the gods, as the name Visvadevas implies.

They appear, however, as a distinct class in the Vedas, and their assumption of this character is therefore of ancient date. The daily offering to them is noticed by Manu. - Wilson's Notes to Vishnu Purâòa.

Visvagaswa: (sáns. hindú). An ancient rija of the solar line-the son of Prithu.

Visvagjyotish: (sáns. hindú). The eldest of the hundred sons of Satajit, who reigned in India in the first Manwantara

Visvajit: (sáns. hindú). 1, A king of Hastinapura, the son of Jayadratha: 2, A king of Magadha, the son of Satyajit.

Visvakarma: (sáns. hindú). The celestial architect, the Indian Hephestus, Mulciber, or Vulcan; originally called Tvashtri (q. v.) The architect and artist of the gods. He was the son of the Yasu Prabhasa and his wife, the lovely and virtuous Yogasiddha. He is said in the V. P. to be the author of a thousand arts, the mechanist of the gods, the fabricator of all ornaments, the chief of artists, the constructor of the self-moving chariots of the deities, and by whose skill men obtain subsistence. Sir W . Jones considers Visvakarma to be the Vulcan of the Greeks and Romans, being, like Vulcan, the forger of arms for the gods, and inventor of the agnyastra, or lire shaft, in the war between them and the Daityas or Titans. - s. Res., Vol. I, 264. "See Tvashtri.

Visvakarman, Visvakarya: (sáns. hindú). Two of the seven principal solar rays.

Visvakena: (sáns. hindú). l, The Manu of the fourteenth Manvantara according to the lists in the Matsya and Padma Purâòas; 2, A king of Hastinapura, the son of Brahmadatta.

Visvamitra: (sáns. hindú). A celebrated Rishi. According to the Râmâyaòa he had originally been a Kshatriya and a great warrior, but subsequently practised so may religious austerities in the Himalaya mountains that he ultimately became a brahman. His character is therefore somewhat anomalous. Max Müller considers that he opposed the ambition of the brahmans, and would not subn)it to their exclusive claims. He at length succeeded in gaining for himself and family the rights for which he struggled, and which the Brahmans had previously withheld from all but their own caste.

Visvamitra, however, was reconciled as soon as he was allowed to share in the profits of the priestly power, and becnme a favouiit** hero in Brahmanical tradition.

When Maharaja Dasaratha was one day discussing with his Councillors the subject of his son Râma's marriage, Visvamitra arrived at the gate of the palace, and desired the doorkeeper to go within and tell the Maharaja that Visvamitra the son of Gadhi, was there. The Maharaja on hearing the message rose up with his two priests and went out to meet the sage, whom he received with every honour, saying, " Your coming, O great sage, is as grateful to me as amrita, as the fall of rain in the proper season, as the birth of a son to a childless father, as the recovery of lost treasure, as the dawning of a great joy." Visvamitra then stated the object of his visit - that Râma should accompany him back to his hermitage to destroy the Rakshasas; an arrangement to which the Maharaja reluctantly consented. He then acted as Guru to Râma and commanded him to slay Taraka; removing his objections about killing a woman, and providing him with divine weapons and mantras. After the marriage of Râma, Visvamitra retired to the Himalaya mountains. During a twelve years' famine, Trisanku provided food for Visvamitra and his family, and the sage being highly pleased, elevated him in his living body to heaven. This legend Wilson thinks is astronomical, and alludes possibly to some reformation of the sphere by Visvamitra under the patronage of Trisanku, and in opposition to a more ancient system advocated by the school of Vasishtha, q. v. The fact of Visvamitra having been both a rishi and an officiating priest, is undoubted. If we look to the number of Vedic hymns ascribed to him and to his family, to the long devotion to sacerdotal functions which this fact implies, and to the apparent improbability that a person who had himself stood in the position of a king should afterwards have become a professional priest, we may find it difficult to believe that although (as he certainly was) a scion of royal stock, he had ever himself exercised royal functions. - 0. S. T., J, 364.

"A kind of consecutive biography of Visvamitra is given in the first book of the Râmâyaòa, of which it forms one of the most interesting episodes. Its substance is as follows: - Once, when roaming over the earth with his armies, Visvamitra came to the hermitage of Vasishtha, and was there received by the saint in the most sumptuous style. Vasishtha could afford to entertain the kmg in this manner because he possessed a fabulous cow of plenty that yielded him everything he desired. Visvamitra becoming awaie of the source of Vasishtha's wealth, strongly wished to possess the cow, and asked Vasishtha to sell her to him. The saint however refusing this offer, the king seized her, intending to carry her off by force. But the cow resisted and ultimately displayed her supernatural powers in producing from different parts of her body numerous peoples, and by them destroying the armies of Visvamitra. The king then had recourse to the magical weapons he possessed, but they were defeated by those of Vasishtha, and to the humiliation thus inflicted on him he then gave vent in exclaiming: * Contemptible is the might of a Kshatriya; a Brahman's might alone is might.' And reflecting what he should do in this emergency, he resolved to practise austerities in order to attain the rank of a Brahman. In consequence he went to the south, and performed severe penance during a thousand years; when at the end of this period the god Brahma appeared to him, and announced that he had become a Rajarshi, or Royal Rishi.

But Visvamitra was not satisfied with this degree of promotion, and continued his austerities for another such period. During that time, king Trisanku of Ayodhya, of the family of Ikshvaku, had determined to perform a sacrifice that would enable him to proceed bodily to heaven, and solicited for this purpose the assistance of Vasishtha, who was the family priest of " all the Ikshvakus." This saint, however, having declared the scheme of the king impossible, and his sons also having refused to act in their father's place, Trisanku told them he would resort to another priest. He applied to Visvamitra, who showed his power by performing the sacrifice so much desired by Trisanku, and accomplishing his object in spite of the resistance of Vasishtha and his sons, and that of the gods themselves.

This event having caused a serious interruption in the austerities of Visvamitra, he proceeded to the forest Pushkara in the west, to remain undisturbed. It was then the tragic incident related under Harischandra occurred. It was in the forest that Sunasepha saw his uncle Visvamitra, and implored him to come to his rescue.

Visvamitra first commanded fifty of his own sons to offer themselves up as a ransom for their cousin. And on their refusing to do so, cursed them to.become outcastes: but afterwards taught Sunasepha two hymns, which if sung by him at the sacrifice would save his life. The liberation of Sunasepha having been effected, and Visvamitra having continued his penance for another thousand years, Brahma conferred on him the dignity of a Rishi. But not satisfied with this distinction he went on practising still fiercer austerities than ever. These the gods interrupted by sending a heavenly nymph Menaka, who excited his worldly passions; still in the end he attained the rank of a Maharshi, or great Rishi. And after two thousand years of still more rigorous penance which for a time was again interrupted by the allurements of a nymph Rambha, the gods headed by Brahma, came to acknowledge that he had now become a Brahmarshi, or Brahman Rishi; and Vasishtha himself was compelled to express acquiescence in the result he had achieved.

The above three paragraphs are abridged from Goldstucker's article in Chambers's Encyclopaedia. Many other legends are given in Muir's O. S. T., Vol. I. Visvamitra's cruel treatment of Harischandra and his family has already been quoted. (See Saivya). Various versions are given of the legend of Trisanku; and of the conflicts between Vasishtha and Visvamitra. Professor Lassen, who quotes the stories, makes the following remarks on their import:

" The legend of the struggle between Vasishtha and Visvamitra embraces two distinct points; one is the contest between the priests and warriors for the highest rank; the other is the temporary alienation of the Ikshvakus from their family priests.

Vasishtha is represented as the exemplar of such a priest; and the story of Kalmashapada is related for the express purpose of showing by an example that the Ikshvakus, after they had retained him, were victorious; in his capacity of priest he continued to live on, and is the representative of his whole race. We may conclude from the legend that his descendants had acquired the position of family priests to the Ikshvakus, though neither he himself nor his son Saktri belonged to their number. Trisanku is the first prince who forsook them, and had recourse to Visvamitra. His successor Ambarisha received support from that personrage, as well as from Richika, one of the Bhrigus; - a family whoso connection with the Kusikas appears also in the story of Parusarama. The hostility bet^vcell the Ikshvakus and the family of Vasishstha continued down to Kalmashapada. Visvamitra is represented as having intentionally fostered the alienation; while Vasishtha is represented as forbearing (though he had the power) to annihilate his rival.

The conflict between the two rivals, with its motives and machinery, is described in the forms peculiar to the fully-developed epos. To this stjle of poetry is to be referred the wonder-working cow, which supplies all objects of desire. There is no ground for believing in any actual war with weapons between the contending parties; or in any participation of degraded Kshatriyas, or aboriginal tribes, in the contest; for all these things are mere poetical creations.

Besides, the proper victory of Vasishtha was not gained by arms, but by his rod. The legend represents the superiority of the Brahmans as complete, since Visvamitra is forced to acknowledge the insufficiency of a warrior's power; and acquires his position as a Brahman by purely Brahmanical methods.

From Visvamitra are derived many of the sacerdotal families which bear the common name of Kausika, and to which many rishis, famous in tradition belong. As there were also kings in this family, we have here an example of the fact that one of the old vedic races became divided, and in later times belonged to both of the two higher castes. It apjrears impossible that any of the aboriginal tribes should have been among the descendants of Visvamitra's sons, as the legend represents; and the meaning of this account may therefore be that some of his sons and their descendants accepted the position of priests among these tribes, and are in consequence described as accursed." - 0. S. T., /, 426.

Visvamitras: (sáns. hindú). The Visvamitras are known as Kusikas or Kausikas; that is, they came from Kush, to this day the name of a river near the Asia Pulus, where M. Ferrier found the ruins of a large place called Kussan. The Kushan, he tells us, were a famous Scythian race, who held Balkh in remote antiquity. Sir H. Rawlinson found their bricks, vrith cuneiform Scythic legends at Susa and in the Persian Gulf. Kush is largely used in a local nomenclature in Central Asia. The Caspian Sea, Cashgar, Kashmere, Khas-Saks, (Sacae or Cossaks) Caucas-as (Khas-mountain) Coss" or Cisii in Persia, the Bal-kash lake and the Kush, and these are but a mere sample, and it is supposed that the Scythians did not come to the Cushites, but that the Cushites colonized Mongolia as they colonized Arabia, Ethiopia and the N. coast of the Indian Ocean. Indra himself is called a son of Kusika. Fire and Indra-worship seem to have been introduced by the Visvamitras and to have supplanted a previous sun-worship of earlier immigrants. - Calcutta Review.

Visvarupa: (sáns. hindú). 1, A name of Vishnu; who is both Bhutesa, * lord of created thiugs ;' and Visvarupa, ' universal substance ;' he is therefore as one with sensible things subject to his own control; 2, A name of one of the Rudras.

Visvasaha: (sáns. hindú). l, A king of Mithila, the son of Ilavila; 2, Another king of Mithila, the son of Abhyutthi-taswa, descendant of Râma.

Visvasphatika: (sáns. hindú). A Raja of Magadha, who is said to have extirpated the Kshatryas and elevated fishermen, barbarians, Brahmans, and other castes, to power. His name is sometimes made Viswasphurtti.

Visvavasa: (sáns. hindú). One of the sons of Pururavas.

Visvesa: (sáns. hindú). A daughter of Daksha married to Dharma.

Vitahavya: (sáns. hindú). A king of Mithila, the son of Sunaya.

Vitala: (sáns. hindú). The second of the seven divisions of Patala; whose soil is black.

Vitasta: (sáns. hindú). A river, the modern Jhelum, but still called in Kashmere the Vitasta or Hydaspes.

Vitatha: (sáns. hindú). Unprofitable; a name given to Raja Bharatwaja, who was a sage as well as king.

Vithi: (sáns. hindú). A division of the planetary sphere.

Vitihotra: (sáns. hindú). l, The ninth son of Priyavrata, according to the Bhagavata; he is called Putra in the other Purâòas, and adopted a religious life; 2, The eldest son of Talajangha, a Yadava chief.

Vitihotras: (sáns. hindú). A branch of the Haihaya tribe.

Vitunda: (sáns. hindú). A demon, the son of Tunda; the Padma Purâòa contains an account of its destruction by Bhagavati.

Vivaswat: (sáns. hindú). 1, A Prajapati; 2, One of the twelve Adityas; 3, The Sun, and father of Vaivaswata Manu.

Vivinsati: (sáns. hindú). A prince of the solar dynasty, the son of Vinsa.

Vraja: (sáns. hindú). One of the sons of Havirdhana and uncle of the Prachetasas.

Vrata: (sáns. hindú). An occasional self-imposed observance or ceremony.

Vrihadbala: (sáns. hindú). A prince of the solar race, the son of Visrutavat; he was slain in the great war by Abhimanyu, the son of Arjuna.

Vrihadaswa: (sáns. hindú). A Raja of Bharata, the father of the celebrated Kuvalayaswa, q. v, Vrihadbhanu - A Raja of Bharata, the son of Vrihatkarman.

Vrihadisha: (sáns. hindú). l, A king of Hastinapura, the son of Ajamidha; 2, One of the five sous of Haryyaswa, termed the Panchalas.

Vrihadratha: (sáns. hindú). l, A Raja of Bharata, the son of Bhadraratha; 2, A son of Uparichara the Vasu; 3, A son of Tigma of the race of Puru; 4, The last of the ten Mauryan kings of Magadha, the son of Sasadharman.

Vrihannaradiya Purâòa: (sáns. hindú). A modern compilation, erroneously termed a Purâòa, containing paneygrical prayers addressed to Vishnu, and injunctions to observe various rites and keep holy certain seasons in honour of him.

Vrihaspati: (sáns. hindú). A sage, the son of Angiras, the priest and pre-, ceptor of the Devatas; a teacher of the science of government.

He had a handsome wife named Tara, who was carried off by Soma (the moon), which led to a fierce contest termed the Taraka war.

The Daityas, Danavas, and other foes of the gods took part with Soma; whilst Indra and all the gods were the allies of Vrihaspati.

Peace was not restored till Brahma interposed and compelled Soma to restore Tara to her husband. Vrihaspati was Vyasa of the fourth Manwantara.

Vrihaspati: (sáns. hindú). The planet Jupiter; described in the V. P. as having a golden car drawn by eight pale-coloured horses.

Vrihatkarman: (sáns. hindú). l, A prince, the son of the Raja of Bharata, Bhadraratha; 2, A king of Hastiuapur, son of Vrihadvasu; 3, A king of Magadha, son of Sukshatra.

Vrihatshana: (sáns. hindú). A Raja of the solar race after the great war.

His father Vrihadbala, was killed by Abhimanyu.

Vrihatkshatra: (sáns. hindú). A prince of Bharata, the son of Bhavanmanya.

Vrihat-sama: (sáns. hindú). A portion of the Sama Veda, created from the southern mouth of Brahma.

Vrijinivat: (sáns. hindú). A Yadava prince, the son of Kroshtri.

Vrika: (sáns. hindú). l , One of the sons of Prithu, according to the Bhagavata; 2, The son of Raja Ruruka; 3, A son of Krishna.

Vrikadeva: (sáns. hindú). One of the daughters of Devaka, who was married to Vasudeva.

Vrikala, Vrikatejas: (sáns. hindú). Two sons of Slishti, and grandsons of Dhruva.

Vrisha: (sáns. hindú). l, The Indra of the eleventh Manwantara; 2, A Yadava chief, the son of Vitihotra.

Vrishadarbha: (sáns. hindú). A Raja of the solar race, the son of Sivi.

Vrishakapi: (sáns. hindú). An appellation of one of the eleven Rudras.

Vrishana: (sáns. hindú). One of the hundred sons of the Maharaja Karttavirya.

Vrishaparvan: (sáns. hindú). A powerful Danava chief, the son of Kasyapa and Danu.

Vrishasena: (sáns. hindú). One of the Anga kings, the son of Karna.

Vrishni: (sáns. hindú). l, A Yadava chief, the eldest son of Madhu; 2, Another Yadava chief, the son of Kunti or Kumbhi; 3, A son of Satwata, a Raja of Mrittikavati; 4, A cousin of the above, the son of Bhajamana.

Vrishnimat: (sáns. hindú). A Raja of the solar race, the son of Chitraratha.

Vritra: (sáns. hindú). The demon who personifies drought; the cloud enemy of Indra, who imprisons the rain in the storm-cloud. He is represented as false and treacherous as he is malignant. He is termed the thief who hides away the rain-clouds. He constantly appears as the enemy of Indra, who is called Vritrahan, the Vritra-slayer, Vritra became a name applied to any enemy. " The Vrittra of the Vrittras denoted the most malignant of adversaries. So again Vrittra the thief is also called Ahi, the throttling snake, or dragon with three heads."1


Who is that, without alarm,
Defies the might of Indra's arm;
That stands and sees without dismay
The approaching Maruts' dread array;
That does not shun in wild affright,
The terrors of the deadly' fight ?
'Tis Vrittra, he whose magic powers
From earth withhold the genial showers,
Of mortal men the foe malign.
And rival of the race divine
Whose demon hosts from age to age,
With Indra war unceasing wage.
Who, times unnumbered, crushed and slain,
Is ever newly born again.
And evermore renew the strife
In which again he forfeits life.
Perched on a steep aerial height.
Shone Vrittra's stately fortress bright.
Upon the wall, in martial mood,
The bold gigantic demon stood,
Confiding in his magic arts.
And armed with store of fiery darts.
And then was seen a dreadful sight.
When god and demon met in fight.
His sharpest missiles Vrittra shot.
His thunderbolts and lightnings hot
He hurled as thick as rain.

* * * * * * * *
And soon the knell of Vrittra's doom
Was sounded by the clang and boom
Of Indra's iron shower;
Pierced, cloven, crushed, with horrid yell,
The dying demon headlong fell
Down from his cloud-built tower."

Notes:Cox, Mythology of the Aryan Nations,

Vyadhi: (sáns. hindú). Disease; Represented as the son of Mritya, (Death.)

Vyadi: (sáns. hindú). A brahman who stopped at the dwelling of Vararuchi on one occasion and solicited hospitality, as a stranger weary with long travel. He then became acquainted with Vararuchi's wonderful powers of memory - was instructed by him, and became a writer of note on philological topics. - Wilson, III, 165.

Vyahritis: (sáns. hindú). The three mystical woi'ds, Bhiih, Bhuvar, Swar; which, with the monosyllable Om, and the Vedas, are considered as forms of Vasudeva (Brahma,) diversified as to their typical character, but essentially one and the same. The daily prayers of the Brahman commence with the formula, Om bliuh, bhuvar, swar; Om earth, sky, heaven; these three mystical terms called Vyahritis, are scarcely of less sanctity than the Pranava itself.

Their efficacy, and the order of their repetition preceding the Gayatri, are fully detailed in Manu, II, 76-81. In the Mitakshara they are directed to be twice repeated mentally, with Om prefixed to each; Om bhuh, Om bhuvah, Om swar; the breath being suppressed by closing the lips and nostrils. - Wilson's Notes to Vishnu Purâòa.

Vyakarana: (sáns. hindú). Grammar; an Anga of the Vedas. That a scientific study of Grammar was cultivated at a very early period of Hindu literature -is borne out by the testimony of the oldest glossator on the Vedas, Yaska (q. v.) The oldest extant work, however, on Sanskrit Grammar is posterior to the work of Yaska; it is the Grammar of Paniui (q. v.) which was criticised by Katgaya, in the Varttikas, these again being commented on and criticised by Patanjali in the Mahabhasya. (See PAnini, where some of the principal later works connected with his system are mentioned.) - Goldstuckek.

Vyakta: (sáns. hindú). Visible substance; a form of Vishnu. * Muir, 0. S. T., V, 133-5.

Vyansa: (sáns. hindú). A powerful Danava, the eldest son of Viprachitti.

Vyapti: (sáns. hindú). Universal; the inherent and essential presence of any one thintj or property lu another, as the deity in the universe, &c.

In the Nyaya system of Gautama a Vyapti means a pervading rule.

It is thus explained by Professor Max Müller: knowledge is a quality of the Self, in the same manner as colour is of light. It is inseparably connected with it, and is explained as the cause of every conception that is expressed in language. Knowledge is either remembrance or perception. Perception is two-fold, right or wrong. Right perception represents the thing such as it is, silver as silver. Wrong perception represents the thing as the thing is not, mother o'pearl as silver. Right perception is four-fold, sensuous, conclusive, comparative, and authoritative. It is produced by the senses, by inferring, by comparing, and by revealed authority.

The different kinds of sensuous perception arise from the different ways in which the organs of sense are brought into contact with their objects, which objects may be either substantial matter, or qualities and actions, as inherent in substance, or the Genus as inherent in substances, qualities and actions.

After sensuous knowledge comes conclusive knowledge, which is gained by means of inferring. Conclusive knowledge is for instance. " This mountain is a volcano," whereas our sensuous perception is only that the mountain smokes. In order to arrive from this at the conclusion that it is a volcano, we must be in possession of what is called a pervading rule or a Vyapti. This smoke is inseparably connected with fire, or as the Hindu calls it, that smokiness is pervaded by fieriness, that wherever there is smoke there is fire. If we possess this Vyapti, which we may remember by such instances as a culinary hearth, &c., then in order to arrive at conclusive knowledge we only require consideration, (paramarsa) in order to find out in any sensuous impressiop something which can be pervaded, something which can make the mountain the member of a Vyapti, this something being in our case the smoke. If we know that the smoke which we perceive is qualified to become part of a Vyapti (this Vyapti being * wherever there is smoke there is fire'), then we know conclusively that this mountain is fiery because it smokes.

The conditions under which it is allowed to form a Vyapti, that is to say to form Universals, have occupied the attention of Hindu philosophers more than any other point in Logic. They distinctly exclude the mere accumulation of observations. For things they say may be together a hundred times and may still not be mutually inherent. They make exceptions for practical purposes. Their repeated observations may be turned into a general rule, but not in philosophical discussions. Volumes after volumes have been written on this subject, and though I do not believe they will throw new light on the question of the origin of Universals, yet they would furnish a curious parallel to the history of the European intellect.*

Vyasa: (sáns. hindú). A great brahman sage who lived in the forest, and by a long course of religious penances had become emaciated and hideous in appearance. He is described as the son of Parasara and a fish girl named Matsya, who was employed as a ferry woman in one of the many small rivers which intersect eastern Bengal, and flow into the Brahmaputra. His original name was Krishna Dwaipdyana, but having become famous as the compiler of the Mahabharata, and the Vedas, he is generally known by the name of Vyasa, or " the arranger." Among all the Brahman sages of antiquity famous for their learning, their austerities, and their miracles few can be compared with the Rishi Vyasa. The following legend is related to show that he was the direct ancestor of the Kauravas and Pandavas who fought in the great war; but is considered by Mr. Vf heeler to be open to the gravest suspicion.

After the death of Raja Vichitra Virya (q. v.) his widows were filled with sorrow, because they had no son to perpetuate the race of Bharata. The custom was that when a man died without issue, his brother or near kinsman should marry his widows. The Rani Satyavati therefore applied to Bhishma, who refused on account of his vow. She then requested the sage Vyasa to take his place.

He proceeded to the palace of Hastinapur and fulfilled the wishes of the Rani; but his presence filled the widows with terror. The first shut her eyes when she beheld him, and she gave birth to a

* Indian Logic. Outline of the necessary Laws of Thought, by Archbishop of York. 286-90.

son who was blind, and who was named Dhritarashtra; and the second widow was so white with fear that she gave birth to a son who was pale, and who was named Pandu. Then Satyavati requested Vyasa to become the father of a third son who should be without blemish; and the first widow would not go to him, but arrayed her maid servant in garments of her own, and sent her to the sage in her stead; and the servant gave birth to a third son who was named Vidura. Thus were born three sons to the royal house at Hastinapur; viz: -

Dhritarashtra the blind; Pandu, the pale; and Vidura, the slave-born.

Vyasas: (sáns. hindú). Arrangers of the Vedas in every Dwapara age; twenty-eight are enumerated: The following is the list contained in Vishnu Purâòa: -

" Twenty-eight times have the Vedas been arranged by the great Rishis, in the Vaivaswata Manwantara in the Dwapara age; and, consequently, eight and twenty Vyasas have passed away; by whom, in their respective periods, the Veda has been divided into four. In the first Dwapara age, the distribution was made by Svvayambhu (Brahma) himself; in the second, the arranger of the Veda (Vedavyasa) was Prajdpati (or Manu); in the third, Usanas; in the fourth, Brihaspati; in the fifth, Savitri; in the sixth, Mrityu (Death, or Yama); in the seventh, Indra; in the eighth, Vasishtha; in the ninth, Saraswata; in the tenth, Tridhaman; in the eleventh, Trivrishan; in the twelfth, Bharadwaja; in the thirteenth, Antariksha; in the fourteenth, Vaprivan; in the fifteenth, Trayyaruna; in the sixteenth, Dhananjaya; in the seventeenth, Kritanjaya; in the eighteenth, Rinajaya; in the nineteenth, Bharadwaja; in the twentieth, Gautama; in the twenty-first, Uttama, also called Haryatman; in the twentysecond. Vena, who is likewise named Rajasravas; in the twentythird, Saumasushmayana, also Trinabindu; in the twenty-fourth, Riksha, the descendant of Bhrigu, who is known also by the name Vllmiki; in the twenty-fifth, my father, Sakti, was the Vyasa; I was the Vyasa of the twenty-sixth Dwapara, and was succeeded by Jitukarua; the Vyasa of the twenty-eighth, who followed him, was Krishna Dwaipayana. These are the twenty-eight elder Vyasas, by whom, in the preceding Dwapara ages, the Veda has been divided into four. In the next Dwapara, Drauni (the son of Drona) will be the Vyasa, when my son, the Muni Krishna Dwaipayana, who is the actual Vyasa, shall cease to be (in that character)."

" A similar list is given in the Kurma and Vayu Purâòas.

Many of the individuals appear as authors of different hymns and prayers in the Vedas; and it is very possible that the greater portion, if not all of them, had a real existence, being the framers or teachers of the religion of the Hindus before a complete ritual was compiled." - Wilson's Notes to V. P.

Vyavasaya: (sáns. hindú). Perseverance. One of the allegorical sons of Dharma.

Vyaya: (sáns. hindú). A name of Pradhana - meaning " that which may be expended."

Vyoman: (sáns. hindú). A Raja of the solar race, the son of Dasirha.

Vyushta: (sáns. hindú). A name of Day: night is called Usha, and the interval between them, Sandhya.


Yadavas: (sáns. hindú). The descendants of Yadu, the eldest son of Yayati and Devayani. A nomade race who grazed cattle and made butter, and occasionally migrated to difiPerent places accompanied by their cows and waggons. The time and circumstances under which they first entered Hindustan are alike unknown. At the birth of Krishna they appear to have settled in the neighbourhood of the city of Matbura, the modern Muttra, on the banks of the river Jumna, and about a hundred and twenty miles to the south of the site of the ancient city of Hastinapur. They dwelt on both sides of the river, in the village of Vrindavana on the western bank, and in the country of Gokula on the opposite shore. They afterwards migrated to Dwaraka, on the western coast of the peninsula of Guzerat, above seven hundred miles from Hastinapur.

Krishna belonged to this tribe; and many mythical details seem to have been connected with its history for the purpose of exalting the tribe from which the favourite deity sprung.

It is plain that great violence and disorder prevailed wherever the Yadavas settled. They were induced by Krishna to renounce the worship of Indra and substitute the mountain Govarddhana in his place; an incident which Mr. Wheeler thinks seems to imply a conflict between a low Fetische worship, and the worship of the Vedic deities.

The Purâòas describe the destruction of the whole tribe in a drunken affray at Prabbasa. The Mahabharata says that all the Yidavas were slaughtered by the curse of the three Rishis, and all the sons and grandsons of Krishna were among the slain.

"The Rajas of Vijayanagur, who in the 15th century of the Christian era maintained a supremacy over the whole of the country south of the Krishna river, and thus possessed the last great Hindu empire which was established in India, claimed to be descendants of the Yadava tribe; and it is a curious fact that it was from one of the decayed chieftains of this fallen dynasty that the East India Company obtained, in the first half of the 17th century, the grant of land on the coast of Coromandel on which stands the modern city of Madras. The original grant on a gold plate appears to have been preserved for more than a century; but was finally lost in 1746 when Madras was captured by the French under Labourdonnais." - Wheeler.

Yadu: (sáns. hindú). The eldest son of Yayati, and ancestor of the Yadavas.

When Yayati ceased to reign he installed his youngest son Puru in the sovereignty, and consigned the southern districts of the kingdom to Yadu.

Yajna: (sáns. hindú). Sacrifice; the character of Brahmanical sacrifice is thus expressed by Dr. Haug, in the Introduction to the Aitareya Brahmana.* " The sacrifice is regarded as the means for obtaining power over this and the other world, over visible as well as invisible beings, animate as well as inanimate creatures. Who knows its proper application, and has it duly performed, is in fact looked upon as the real master of the world: for any desire he may entertain, even if it be the most ambitious, can be gratified; any object he has in view can be obtained by means of it. The Yajna taken as a whole is conceived to be a kind of machinery, in which every piece must tally with the other; or a sort of large chain in which no link is allowed to be wanting; or a staircase by which one may ascend to heaven; or as a personage, endowed with all the characteristics of the human body. It exists from eternity and proceeded from the Supreme Being, (Prajapati or Brahma neuter) along with the Traividya, i. e., the three-fold science. The creation of the world was even regarded as the fruit of a sacrifice performed by the Supreme Being. The Yajna exists as an invisible thing at all times. It is like the latent power of electricity in an electrifying machine, requiring only the * Vol. I, p. 73.

operation of a suitable apparatus in order to be elicited. It i& supposed to extend, when unrolled from the Ahavaniya or sacrificial fire, (into which all oblations are thrown,) to heaven, forming thus a bridge or ladder, by means of which the sacrifice can communicate with the world of gods and spirits, and even ascend when alone to their abodes."

Yajna: (sáns. hindú). Sacrifice; an allegorical son of the patriarch Ruchi, said to have been married to his sister Dakshina, " donation" to bmhmans.

At the spoiling of Daksha's sacrifice Yajna was decapitated, and' afterwards became the constellation Mrigasiras, being elevated to the planetary region by Brahma.

Yajnabahu: (sáns. hindú). The name of one of the sons of Priyavrata, as given in the Bhagavata. See Agnibahu.

Yajnas: (sáns. hindú). Five are enumerated, which arc translated great sacrifices, or great obligations: 1, Brahmayajna, sacred study; Pitriyajna, libations to the manes; Devayajna, burnt ofierings to the gods; Baliyajna, offerings to all creatures; Nriyajna hospitality.

The Prajapatiyajna, propagation of offspring, and Satyayajna observance of truth, are apparently later additions. - Wilson's Notes to V. P.

Yajnasri: (sáns. hindú). One of the Andhrabhritya rijas: the son of Swaskandha.

Yajnawalka: (sáns. hindú). A teacher of the Rig Veda.

Yajnawalkya: (sáns. hindú). A celebrated ascetic, the pupil of Vaisampayana who adored the sun until the luminary in the form of a horse, appeared to him, and imparted to him the text of the Yajush called Ayatayama (unstudied,) which were unknown to Vaisampdyana. It was Yajnawalkya who officiated as one of the Hotris, and cooked the sacrifice at the great Rajasuya of Yudhishthira. Professor Max Müller observes ** that it would be a mistake to call Yajnawalkya the author, in our sense of the word of the Vajasaneya Sauhita and the Satapatha Brahmana. But we have no reason to doubt that it was Yajnawalkya who brought the ancient Mantras and Brahmanas into their present form." A. S. L.

" Yajnawalkya Vajasaneya was evidently a man of great influence, a leader of public opinion in his day; and one longs to know when he lived. But this is a subject still requiring much elucidation, as may be seen in the Introduction to Professor Goldstucker's Panini." - Mrs. Manning A. M. I.

Yajur Veda: (sáns. hindú). See Appendix.

Yajush: (sáns. hindú). The Yajur Veda.

Yaksha: (sáns. hindú). The son of Khasa, and parent of the Yakshas, as his brother Rakshas was of the Rakshasas.

Yakshas: (sáns. hindú). Minor deities; inferior divinities. Demi-gods especially attendant on Kuvera, and employed by him on the care of his garden and treasures.

Yama: (sáns. hindú). l, One of the minor Dwipas; 2, A watch of the day or night.

Yama: (sáns. hindú). The monarch of the Pitris and judge of the dead - the Pluto of Hindu mythology. He is represented to be the son of the Sun.

" Yama is the son of Vivasvat, and of Saranyu, the immortal daughter of Tvashtri. He is elsewhere said to have been one of the original pair of human beings, and to have sprung from the Gandharva, a deity of the atmosphere, and his wife. In the same hymn he is said to have resisted the solicitations of his twin sister Yami to form a sexual union with her for the continuation of the species. He was the first of mortals who died, and discovered the way to the other world; he guides other men thither, and assembles them in a home which is secured to them for ever. In one place he is represented as carousing with the gods under a leafy tree.

He is a king and dwells in celestial light, in the innermost sanctuary of heaven, where the departed behold him associated in blessedness with Varuòa. He grants luminous abodes in heaven to the pious, who dwell with him in festive enjoyment.

" In the Rig Veda Yama is nowhere represented (as he is in the later Indian Mythology,) as having anything to do with the punishment of the wicked. Nevertheless, Yama is still, to some extent, an object of terror. He is represented as having two insatiable dogs, with foar eyes and wide nostrils, which guard the road to his abode, and which the departed are advised to hurry past with all possible speed. These dogs are said to wander about among men as his messengers, for the purpose of summoning men to the presence of their master, who is in another place identified with death, and is described as sending a bird as the herald of doom. Again, death is said to be the messenger of Yama, who conveys the spirits of men to the abode of their forefathers.

" To great king Yama homage pay.
Who was the first of men that died.
That crossed the mighty gulf, and spied
For mortals out the heavenly way.

No power can ever close the road
Which he to us laid open then,
By which in long succession, men
Ascend to his sublime abode.

By it our fathers all have passed;
And that same path we too shall trace,
And every new succeeding race
Of mortal men, while time shall last.

The god assembles round his throne
A growing throng, the good and wise
All those whom, scanned with searching eyes,
He recognizes as his own.

Departed mortal, speed from earth
By those old ways thy sires have trod;
Ascend, behold the expectant god.
Who calls thee to a higher birth.

First must each several element
That joined to form thy living frame
Flit to the region whence it came,
And with its parent source be blent.

Thine eye shall seek the solar orb,
Thy life- breath to the wind shall fly,
Thy part ethereal to the sky;
Thine earthy part shall earth absorb.

Thine unborn part shall Agni bright
With his benignest rays illume;
And guide it through the trackless gloom
To yonder sphere of life and light.

All imperfections leave behind;
Assume thine ancient form once more,
Each limb and sense thou hadst before,
From every earthly taint refined.

And now with heavenly glory bright.
With life intenser, nobler, blest,
With large capacity to taste
A fuller measure of delight.

Thou there once more each well known face
Shalt see of those thou lovedst here;
Thy parents, wife, and children dear.
With rapture shalt thou soon embrace.

The good which thou on earth hast wrought.
Each sacrifice, each pious deed.
Shall there receive its ample meed;
No worthy act shall be forgot.

In those fair realms of cloudless day
Where Yam a every joy supplies.
And every longing satisfies
Thy bliss shall never know decay."

Muir, 0. S. T., F, 329.

Yama: (sáns. hindú). The first of the eight stages of Yoga, being self-government, of which five kinds are specified: -

1 - Freedom from any wish to injure others.
2 - Truth in reference to words and thoughts.
3 - Freedom from appropriation of others' property in thought, word or deed.
4 - The subjection of one's members in order to overcome desire.
5 - Renunciation of all indulgence of pleasure.

Yama-gita: (sáns. hindú). The song of Yama; a name given to the seventh ' chapter of the third book of the Vishnu Purâòa.

Yamas: (sáns. hindú). Moral duties; five acts of restraint: absence of cruelty or violence, (Ahinsa), honesty (Asteya), truth (Satya), chastity (Bramacharyya), disinterestedness (Aparigraha).

Yamas: (sáns. hindú). Twelve deities, sons of Yajna and Dakshina.

Yami: (sáns. hindú). l, A daughter of Daksha and wife of Dharma; 2, A daughter of the sun, the twin sister of Yama; she became the Yamuna river.

Yamuna: (sáns. hindú). A celebrated river, described in the Purâòas as the daughter of the sun. There is a legend that Balarama compelled the river to change its course and follow him in his wanderings; which Wilson thinks may allude to the construction of canals from the Jumna, for the purposes of irrigation.

Yasas: (sáns. hindú). A son of Dharma.

Yaska: (sáns. hindú). A predecessor of Panini (q. v.) and author of Nirukta, explaining different Vedic words. Yaska was also the author of a Commentary which bears the name of Nirukta. " Besides the great importance which Yaksha's Nirukta possesses for a proper understanding of the Vedic texts; it is valuable also on account of several discussions which it raises on grammatical and other questions; and on account of the insight it affords us into the the scientific and religious condition of its time." - Goldstucker, Yasoda - l. The daughter of king Samoravira, who was married to Varddhamana, who afterwards became the twenty-fourth Tirthankara of the Jains, Mahavira, Yasoda - 2, The nurse of Krishna; who was conveyed at his birth to the bed of Yasoda, by his father Vasudeva, and her own new born infant Yoganidra, removed to the bed of Devaki, and destroyed by Kansa.

Yasodhara: (sáns. hindú). The wife of Sahishnu and mother of Kamadeva.

Yati: (sáns. hindú). One of the sons of Nahusha and brother of Yayati.

Yavanas: (sáns. hindú). lonians or Greeks. The term Yavanas, though in later limes applied to the Mohammedans, designated formerly the Greeks. They are placed by the V. P. in the west of Bharata.

Yavinara: (sáns. hindú). A king of Hastinapura, the son of Dwinudha and grandson of Hastin.

Yaudheya: (sáns. hindú). The wife of Yudhishthira and mother of Devaka.

Yayati: (sáns. hindú). The son of Raja Nahusha. He had two wives, Devayani, the daughter of Usanas, and Sarmishtha, the daughter of Vrishaparvan; of whom this genealogical verse is recited: "Devayani bore two sous, Yadu and Turvasu. Sarmishtha, the daughter of Vrishaparvan, had three sons, Druhyu, Anu, and Puru." Through the curse of Usanas, Yayati became old and infirm before his time; but, having appeased his father-in-law, he obtained permission to transfer his decrepitude to any one who would consent to take it. He first applied to his eldest son, Yadu, and said: " Your maternal grandfather has brought this premature decay upon me. By his permission, however, I may transfer it to you for a thousand years. I am not yet satiate with worldly enjoyments, and wish to partake of them through the means of your youth. Do not refuse compliance with my request." Yadu, however, was not willing to take upon him his father's decay; on which, his father denounced an imprecatiou upon him, and said: " Your posterity shall not possess dominion." He then applied, successively, to Druhyu, Turvasu, and Anu, and demanded of them their juvenile vigour. They all refused, and were, in consequence, cursed by the king. Lastly, he made the same request of Sarmishtha's youngest son Puru, who bowed to his father, and readily consented to give him his youth, and receive, in exchange, Yayati's infirmities, saying that his father had conferred upon him a great favour.

The king Yayati being, thus, endowed with renovated youth, conducted the affairs of State for the good of his people, enjoying such pleasures as were suited to his age and strength, and were not incompatible with virtue. He formed a connexion with the celestial nymph Viswachi, and was wholly attached to her, and conceived no end to his desires. The more they were gratified, the more ardent they became; as it is said in this verse: " Desire is not appeased by enjoyment: fire fed with sacrificial oil becomes but the more intense. No one has ever more than enough of rice, or barley, or gold, or cattle, or women. Abandon, therefore, inordinate desire.

When a mind finds neither good nor ill in all objects, but looks on all with an equal eye, then everything yields it pleasure. The wise man is filled with happiness, who escapes from desire, which the feeble-minded can with difficulty relinquish, and which grows not old with the aged. The hair becomes grey, the teeth fall out, as man advances in years; but the love of wealth, the love of life, are not impaired by age." *' A thousand years have passed," reflected Yayiti, " and ray mind is still devoted to pleasure: every day my desires are awakened by new objects. I will, therefore, now renounce all sensual enjoyment, and fix my mind upon spiritual truth. Unaffected by the alternatives of pleasure and pain, and having nothing I may call my own, I will, henceforth, roam the forests with the deer."

Having made this determination, Yayati restored his youth to Puru, resumed his own decrepitude, installed his youngest son in the sovereignty, and departed to the wood of penance (Tapovana).

To Turvasu he consigned the south-east districts of his kingdom; the west, to Druhyu; the south, to Yadu; and the north, to Anu; to govern, as viceroys, under their younger brother Puru, whom he appointed supreme monarch of the earth." V. P.

A different account is given in the Padma Purâòa. It is there said that Yayati was invited by Indra to heaven, and conveyed on the way thither by Matali, Indra's charioteer. For the conversation that took place between them, see Matali; the result was that Yayati returned to earth, where, by his virtuous administration he rendered all his subjecits exempt from passion and decay: Yama coniplained that men had ceased to die, and Indra sent Kamadeva and his daughter Asruvindumati to endeavour to excite passion in the breast of Yayati; they succeeded, and it was then the aged king asked his sons to give him their youth in exchange for his decrepitude. As related above they all refused except Puru, the youngest. Not long after Yayati proceeded with his subjects to Indra and ultimately to the abode of Vishnu. - Wilson, III, 37.

Yedillian: (sáns. hindú). The wife of Ladurlad. It was on the latter that Southey makes the terrible curse of Kehama to rest. Ladurlad was at this time a widower, but his beloved daughter Kaliyal was miraculously preserved to him, and afforded him some solace amidst his wanderings and sufferings, so well depicted in Southey's poem. When at length by the descent of the Ganges to the earth the father and daughter are enabled to escape to Mount Meru and find a place of rest beyond the influence of Kehama's Curse, and then the long-lost Yedillian returns to him in this bower of bliss to complete his happiness. The scene is so affectiugly described that the whole passage may be quoted: .

Three happy beings are there here,
The Sire, the Maid, the Glendoveer;
A fourth approaches, ...who is this
That enters in the Bower of Bliss ? .

No form so fair might painter find
Among the daughters of mankind;
For death her beauties hath refined,
And unto her a form hath given
Framed of the elements of Heaven;

Pure dwelling place for perfect mind.
She stood and gazed on Sire and Child;
Her tongue not yet had power to speak,
The tears were streaming down her cheek;

And when those tears her sight beguiled,
And still her faltering accents fail'd,
The Spirit, mute and motionless.
Spread out her arms for the caress.

Made still and silent with excess
Of love and painful happiness.
The Maid that lovely form surveyed;
Wistful she gazed, and knew her not,

But Nature to her heart convey'd
A sudden thrill, a startling thought,
A feeling many a year forgot.
Now like a dream anew recurring,

As if again in every vein
Her mother's milk was stirring.
With straining neck and earnest eye
She stretched her hands imploringly,

As if she fain would have her nigh.
Yet fear'd to meet the wish'd embrace,
At once with love and awe opprest.
Not so Ladurlad; he could trace.

Though brighten'd with angelic grace.
His own Yedillian's earthly face;
He ran and held her to his breast !
Oh joy above all joys of Heaven,

By Death alone to others given.
This moment hath to him restored
The early-lost, the long-deplored.
They sin who tell us Love can die.

With life all other passions fly,
All others are but vanity.
In Heaven Ambition cannot dwell.
Nor Avarice in the vaults of Hell;

Earthly these passions of the Earth,
They perish where they have their birth;
But Love is indestructible.
Its holy flame for ever burneth,

From Heaven it came, to Heaven returneth;
Too oft on Earth a troubled guest.
At times deceived, at times opprest.
It here is tried and purified.

Then hath in Heaven its perfect rest:
It soweth here with toil and care.
But the harvest time of Love is there.
Oh ! when a Mother meets on high

The Babe she lost in infancy,
Ilath she not then, for paius and fears,
The day of woe, the watchful night,
For all her sorrow, all her tears,
An over-payment of delight ? .

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