by Hermann Oldenberg | 1886 | 37,785 words

The Grihya-sutra ascribed to Shankhayana, which has been edited and translated into German in the XVth volume of the "Indische Studien", is based on the first of the four Vedas, the Rig-veda in the Bashkala recension, and among the Brahmana texts, on the Kaushitaka. Alternative titles: Śāṅkhāyana-gṛhya-sūtra (शाङ्खायन-गृह्य-सूत्र), Shank...

Adhyāya IV, Khaṇḍa 7

1. Now the interruption (of the Veda recitation):—

2[1]. In the case of prodigies until the same time (next day),

3. And in the case of other miracles;

4. In the case of lightning, thunder, and rains (the recitation shall be interrupted) till the twilight has thrice passed;

5. At a Śrāddha-dinner for one day;

6[2]. If a death (of relations) or birth has happened, for ten days;

7[3]. On the fourteenth days (of the fortnights), the new moon days, and the Aṣṭakā days,

8[4]. And on misty days.

9. And when the teacher has died, for ten days;

10. When he has heard of it, for three days;

11[5]. And (on the death) of those whose family-head he is.

12. On receiving (gifts) as at the Śrāddha.

13. On (the death of) a fellow-student;

14. When he has followed (the funeral of) a dead person,

15. And when he has laid down the lumps of flour to the fathers.

16. At night;

17. During twilight;

18. On the full and change of the moon;

19. After sunset;

20. In the neighbourhood of a Śūdra;

21[6]. When the sound of a Sāman is heard;

22. On a burial ground;

23[7]. In a wilderness which belongs to the village;

24. In a village where a corpse is;

25. On seeing forbidden sights;

26. On hearing what is forbidden;

27. On smelling a foul smell;

28. If a high wind blows;

29[8]. If a cloud emits (heavy) rain;

30. On a carriage road;

31. And while the sound of a lute is heard;

32. While being on a chariot;

33. (In the neighbourhood) of a dog as (in that) of a Śūdra;

34. Having climbed up a tree;

35. Having descended into a pit;

36. (Immersed) in water;

37. While anybody cries;

38. While suffering bodily pain;

39. While he is naked;

40. Whilst impure with the remnants of food

41. On a bridge;

42. On the occasion of the shaving of the hair and the beard until the bath;

43. While being rubbed;

44. While bathing;

45[9]. When having sexual intercourse;

46. While being anointed;

47. (In the neighbourhood) of a man who has to touch corpses (a corpse-bearer, &c.), of a woman that has recently been confined, or that has her courses, as (in the neighbourhood) of a Śūdra;

48. With veiled hands;

49. In an army;

50. In presence of a Brāhmaṇa who has not had his meal, and of cows (that have eaten nothing);

51. When (these impediments) have passed, let them (continue to) recite (the Veda).

52. Should any of these cases arise against his will, let him (continue to) recite after having held his breath and looked at the sun.

53[10]. (The same rules hold good,) except (those regarding) lightning, thunder, and rain, for (the study of) the Kalpa. During the five months and a half (they have to behave) as while it rains.

54. Thereof it is also said,

55[11]. 'Food, water, roots and fruits, and whatsoever else Śrāddha-food there may be: even when he has (only) accepted thereof, the study should be interrupted; the Brāhmaṇa's hand is his mouth; so it is taught.'

Footnotes and references:


7, 2. The translation of ākālam given in my German edition (Während der betreffenden Zeit) is wrong: comp. the commentary there quoted at p. 150; Gautama XVI, 22; Professor Stenzler's note on Pāraskara II, II, 2.


Aghaṃ sapiṇḍasodakayor maraṇaṃ. Nārāyaṇa.


According to Nārāyaṇa the ca at the end of this Sūtra would p. 116 be intended to convey the meaning that on the pratipad days of each fortnight the study should also be interrupted.


The translation of nabhya is quite conjectural. Nārāyaṇa gives a different meaning to this word; comp. p. 150 of the German edition.


Ācāryaputrādayaḥ. Nārāyaṇa.


The reason why the recitation of the Rig-veda is forbidden when the sound of a Sāman is heard, becomes manifest, for instance, from Āpastamba I, to, 7, where the discontinuance of the Veda-study is prescribed when the barking of dogs, the braying of asses, the cry of a wolf, &c., the sound of musical instruments, of weeping, and of a Sāman is heard. Loud sounds like these would disturb the recitation of Ṛc or Yajus texts. A very curious opinion has been recently brought forward by Professor Aufrecht (see his edition of the Rig-veda, second edition, vol. ii, p. xxxviii) that the incompatibility of the recitation of Ṛc hymns and of Sāmans 'beruht auf der Kenntniss von der Willkür and der zum Theil unwürdigen Weise, in welcher der alte Text des Rig-veda in diesem Gesangbuche (i.e. the Sāmavedārcika) behandelt ist.'


Grāmāraṇye grāmam (read, grāma?) evāraṇyaṃ vanaṃ tatra nādhīyīta. Nārāyaṇa.


Except during the rainy season. Nārāyaṇa.


Nārāyaṇa also understands maithuna, and I think that the German translation ought to be corrected accordingly.


I think that this Sūtra contains two different rules which have to be separated, viz. 1. vidyutstanayitnuvarṣavarjaṃ kalpe; 2. varṣavad ardhashaṣṭheshu. The first of these rules would extend the cases of anadhyāya mentioned in this chapter to the study of the Kalpa-sūtra, except the cases of lightning, rain, &c. The second would refer to the five months and a half following on the Utsarga ceremony (comp. chap. 6, 8), and would imply that during this time the same texts are to be studied or not, according as their study is allowed or forbidden during rainfall: i.e. the study of the Saṃhitā is to be discontinued, while that of the Kalpa is allowed to go on. Rāmacandra and Nārāyaṇa differ from this interpretation; see p. 151 of the German edition.


Comp. Manu IV, 117; Vasiṣṭha XIII, 16.

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