The Rig Veda/Mandala 5/Hymn 2
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1. THE youthful Mother keeps the Boy in secret pressed to her close, nor yields him to the Father. But, when he lies upon the arm, the people see his unfading countenance before them. 2. What child is this thou carriest as handmaid, O Youthful One? The Consort-Queen hath bome him. The Babe unborn increased through many autumns. I saw him born what time his Mother bare him. 3. I saw him from afar gold-toothed, bright-coloured, hurling his weapons from his habitation, What time I gave him Amrta free from mixture. How can the Indraless, the hymnless harm me? 4. I saw him moving from the place he dwells in, even as with a herd, brilliantly shining. These seized him not: he had been born already. They who were grey with age again grow youthful. 5. Who separate my young bull from the cattle, they whose protector was in truth no stranger? Let those whose hands have seized upon them free them. May he, observant, drive the herd to us-ward. 6. Mid mortal men godless have secreted the King of all who live, home of the people. So may the prayers of Atri give him freedom. Reproached in turn be those who now reproach him. 7. Thou from the stake didst loose e'en Sunahsepa bound for a thousand; for he prayed with fervour. So, Agni, loose from us the bonds that bind us, when thou art seated here, O Priest who knowest. 8. Thou hast sped from me, Agni, in thine anger: this the protector of Gods' Laws hath told me. Indra who knoweth bent his eye upon thee: by him instructed am I come, O Agni. 9. Agni shines far and wide with lofty splendour, and by his greatness makes all things apparent. He conquers godless and malign enchantments, and sharpens both his horns to gore the Raksas. 10. Loud in the heaven above be Agni's roarings with keen-edged weapons to destroy the demons. Forth burst his splendours in the Soma's rapture. The godless bands press round but cannot stayhim. 11. As a skilled craftsman makes a car, a singer I, Mighty One! this hymn for thee have fashioned. If thou, O Agni, God, accept it gladly, may we obtain thereby the heavenly Waters. 12. May he, the strong-necked Steer, waxing in vigour, gather the foeman's wealth with none to check him. Thus to this Agni have the Immortals spoken. To man who spreads the grass may he grant shelter, grant shelter to the man who brings oblation.