The Markandeya Purana

by Frederick Eden Pargiter | 1904 | 247,181 words | ISBN-10: 8171102237

This page relates “hymn to the sun” which forms the 107th chapter of the English translation of the Markandeya-purana: an ancient Sanskrit text dealing with Indian history, philosophy and traditions. It consists of 137 parts narrated by sage (rishi) Markandeya: a well-known character in the ancient Puranas. Chapter 107 is included the section known as “conversation between Markandeya and Kraustuki”.

Canto CVII - Hymn to the Sun

Viśvakarman praises the Sun, while he is reducing the Sun’s splendour.

Mārkaṇḍeya spoke:

While the Sun was being pared down, the Prajāpati Viśvakarman then uttered this hymn, wherewith his hair stood erect with joy,[1] to the Sun.

“To the Sun, who is compassionate for the welfare of those who fall prostrate before him, who is great of soul, who has seven equally swift horses, who has great glory, who awakens the beds of lotuses, who splits asunder[2] the covering of the veil of darkness, be reverence! To him who works merit through the superabundance of fire, who gives many objects of desire, who reclines amid beams of radiant fire, who brings welfare to all the world, be reverence! To the Sun, who is without birth[3], the cause of the three worlds, the soul of created beings, the lord of the heavenly cattle, the bull, highest among those who are greatly compassionate, the home whence the eye originated,[4] be reverence! To the Sun, who is maintained by knowledge, who is the inmost soul,[5] the foundation of the world, desirer of the world’s welfare, the self-existent, the eye of all the worlds, highest among the gods, boundless in glory, be reverence! Thou, for a monent the crest jewel of the day-spring mountain[6], the honoured messenger[7] of the hosts of gods to the world, thou, whose body consists of a thousand wide-spreading rays of light, shinest on the world, driving away the darknesses. By reason of thy intoxication from drinking up like spirituous liquor the darkness of the world, thy body has acquired a deep red hue,[8] O Sun, so that thou shinest exceedingly with masses of light that calls the three worlds into life. Mounting thy equally proportioned chariot that sways about gracefully and is widely pleasing[9], with horses that are ever unwearied[10], O adorable god, thou coursest the broad world for our good.[11] O Sun, thou purifier of the three worlds, protect me, who am devoted to thy parrot-hued steeds, and who am most pure[12] through the dust of thy feet, and who am, prostrate before thee, O thou who art kind to folk that bow to thee! Thus to the Sun, who exists as the procreator of all the worlds, who is the sole cause of the glory that calls the three worlds into life,[13] who exists as the lamp of all the worlds—to thee, O choicest of the thirty gods, I ever prostrate myself!”[14]

Footnotes and references:


Udbhūta-pulaka-stotram; both editions read the same, but udbhūta-pulakaḥ stotram would seem preferable.


Ava-pāṭine; a word not in the dictionary.


Ajāya; or “who is the driver, the instigator.”


Cakṣuḥ-prabhavālayāya; or “the pre-eminent abode of the eye.”



For jñāna-bhūtāntarātmane (the third syllable of which violates the metre, the Vaṃśa-sthavila) the Bombay edition reads jñāna-bhṛte ’ntarātmane, which I hare adopted.


For udayācala-mauli-māline (the last word of which violates the metre, the Sumukhī) the Bombay edition reads udayācala-mauli-maṇiḥ, which I have adopted.


Sura-gaṇa-mahita-hito; both editions read the same, but the word mahita violates the metre; it should consist of a long and a short syllable. Perhaps the word should be mānya.


For vilohita-vigrahāt (which violates the metre in the last word) the Bombay edition reads vilohita-vigrahatā, which is correct.


Cāru-vikampitam uru-ruciram; both editions read the same, but it violates the metre, the Sumukhī. I would suggest as an amendment Rucira-vikampitam ūrdhva-caram, “that sways about pleasingly, moving on high.”


For akhila-hayair, which violates the metre, read akhinna-hayair with the Bombay edition.


Carasi jagad-āhitāya vitatam; both editions read the same, but it violates the metre, the Sumukhī. The metre is satisfied by altering the words, carasi hitāya jagad vitatam.


Instead of -pavitra-talam I take the Bombay reading -pavitra tamam.


Instead of Tri-bhuvana-pāvana-dhāma-bhūtam, which violates the metre, the Puṣpitāgrā, I have taken the Bombay reading Tri-bhuvana-bhāvana-dhāma-hetum ekam.


The Calcutta reading Devam praṇato ’smi Viśvakarmāṇam violates the metre, and is incorrect because it is Viśvakarman who is speaking. I have followed the Bombay reading Tridaśa-vara pranato ’smi sarvadā tvām. Instead of these last two words Viśvakarmā might well he read.

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