Page:Atharva-Veda samhita volume 2.djvu/582

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Indexes and other Auxiliary Matter

7. The Names of the Seers of the Hymns, as given by the Anukramaṇī

Whitney's exploitation of the Major Anukramaṇī.—In his Excerpts from the Anukramaṇī, Whitney has given most of the material of value to be found in that treatise, but of course without attempting to settle all doubtful points in such a way as might properly be expected of a critical editor of its text. One of the uses of the following Index will be to make the deficiencies of this part of his work more readily apparent. The Excerpts and Index together will make the task of producing a critical edition relatively easy.⌋

Doubtful points.—In some cases, this Index does not tally perfectly with the Excerpts. Thus vi. 46 and 47, as well as 45, seem to be ascribed to "An̄giras Pracetas, with Yama": cf. the Excerpts. Again, mantroktarṣi of the Excerpt for vi. 48 may perhaps mean "Agni and Ṛbhu and Indra"; but I have not entered those names for this hymn in the Index. Whitney seems to have had a doubt as to vii. 27-29, whether they should not be ascribed rather to Bhṛgvan̄giras than to Medhātithi; and as to vii. 31, whether it should not be ascribed rather to Brahman than to Bhṛgvan̄giras; and as to vii. 33. What the Anukr. means to say about vi. 63 is not wholly clear.⌋

Entire books of division III. ascribed each to a single seer.—It will be noticed that four entire books (all belonging to the third grand division: see p. 1035) are ascribed by the Major Anukramaṇī each to a single seer: books xiii. and xvii., each addressed to the Sun, are ascribed to Brahman as seer; the wedding verses, book xiv., most appropriately to Sāvitrī Sūryā; and the funeral verses, book xviii., to Atharvan (the Old Anukr. most appropriately calls them the Yama-hymns: p. 814). Further, so far as quasi-authorship goes, the Vrātya book, xv., is treated as a unit in that no seer is named for the whole nor for any part of it. As for book xvi., which puzzles us in more ways than one, there is good reason to think that tradition ascribes it to Prajāpati (see p. 792, ¶4); on the other hand, this is not wholly certain (p. 792, ¶5), and the Excerpts actually assign 3-4 to Brahman and 5-7 to Yama, and leave 2 and 8 and 9 without express assignment, unless indeed we are to assume that the statements for 1 and for 7 hold good respectively for 2 and for 8 and 9.⌋

Value of these ascriptions of quasi-authorship.—The facts just cited would appear to be of some moment as differentiating the third grand division from the other two; but otherwise and in general, how much value, if any, is to be attached to these ascriptions is matter for special study. It would be interesting to compare the ascriptions of the AV. Anukr. with those of the RV. Anukr. and to see how far the two treatises