The Sama-Veda




I Agni

1. Agni, thy faithful servant I call upon thee with many a gift,
As in the keeping of the great inciting God.
2. To Agni, to the Hotar-priest offer your best, your lofty speech,
To him ordainer-like who bears the light of songs.
3. O Agni, thou who art the lord of wealth in kine, thou Son of Strength,
Bestow on us, O Jatavedas, high renown
4. Most skilled in sacrifice, bring the Gods, O Agni, to the pious, man:
A joyful Priest, thy splendour drives our foes afar
5. Taught by seven mothers at his birth was he, for glory of the wise.
He, firm and sure, hath set his mind on glorious wealth
6. And in the day our prayer is this: May Aditi come nigh to help,
With loving-kindness bring us weal and chase our foes
7. Worship thou Jatavedas, pray to him who willingly accepts,
Whose smoke wanders at will, and none may grasp his flame
8. No mortal man can e’er prevail by arts of magic over him
Who hath served Agni well, the oblation-giving God.
9. Agni, drive thou the wicked foe, the evil-hearted thief away,
Far, far, Lord of the brave! and give us easy paths!
10. O hero Agni, Lord of men, on hearing this new laud of mine
Burn down the Rakshasas, enchanters, with thy flame!

II Agni

1. Sing forth to him the holy, most munificent, sublime with his refulgent glow,
To Agni, ye Upastutas
2. Agni, he conquers by thine aid that brings him store of valiant sons and does great deeds,
Whose bond of friendship is thy choice
3. Sing praise to him the Lord of light! The Gods have made the God to be their messenger,
To bear oblation to the Gods.
4. Anger not him who is our guest! He is the bright God Agni, praised by many a man,
God Hotar, skilled in sacrifice.
5. May Agni, worshipped, bring us bliss: may the gift, blessed one! and sacrifice bring bliss.
Yea, may our eulogies bring bliss.
6. Thee have we chosen skilfullest in sacrifice, immortal Priest among the Gods,
Wise finisher of this holy rite.
7. Bring us that splendour, Agni, which may overcome each greedy fiend in our abode,
And the malicious wrath of men!
8. Soon as the eager Lord of men is friendly unto Manu’s race
Agni averteth from us all the Rakshasas!

III Indra

1. Sing this, beside the flowing juice, to him your hero, much-invoked,
To please him as a mighty Bull
2. O Satakratu Indra, now rejoice with that carouse of thine
Which is most glorious of all!
3. Ye cows, protect the fount: the two mighty ones bless the sacrifice.
The handles twain are wrought of gold.
4. Sing praises that the horse may come; sing, Srutakaksha, that the cow
May come, that Indra’s might may come
5. We make this Indra very strong to strike, the mighty Vritra dead:
A vigorous hero shall he be.
6. Based upon strength and victory and power, O Indra, is thy birth:
Thou, mighty one! art strong indeed,
7. The sacrifice made Indra great when he unrolled the earth, and made
Himself a diadem in heaven.
8. If I, O Indra, were, like thee, the single ruler over wealth
My worshipper should be rich in kine.
9. Pressers, blend Soma juice for him, each draught most excellent, for him
The brave, the hero, for his joy.
10. Here is the Soma juice expressed. O Vasu, drink till thou art full:
Undaunted God, we give it thee

IV Indra

1. Surya, thou mountest up to meet the hero famous for his wealth,
Who hurls the bolt and works for man.
2. Whatever, Vritra-slayer! thou, Surya hast risen upon to-day,
That, Indra, all is in thy power.
3. That Indra is our youthful friend, who with his trusty guidanceled
Turvasa, Yadu from afar.
4. O Indra, let not ill designs surround us in the sunbeams’ light
This may we gain with thee for friend!
5. Indra, bring wealth that gives delight, the victor’s ever-conquering wealth,
Most excellent, to be our aid
6. In mighty battle we invoke Indra, Indra is lesser fight,
The friend who bends his bolt at fiends.
7. In battle of a thousand arms Indra drank Kadru’s Soma juice
There he displayed his manly might.
8. Faithful to thee, we sing aloud, heroic Indra, songs to thee
Mark, O good Lord, this act of ours!
9. Hitherward! they who light the flame and straightway trim the sacred grass,
Whose friend is Indra ever young.
10. Drive all our enemies away, smite down the foes who press around,
And bring the wealth for which we long!

V Indra and others

1. I Hear, as though ’twere close at hand, the cracking of the whips they hold:
They gather splendour on their way.
2. Indra, these friends of ours, supplied with Soma, wait and look to thee
As men with fodder to the herd.
3. Before his hot displeasure all the peoples, all the men bow down,
As rivers bow them to the sea.
4. We choose unto ourselves that high protection of the mighty Gods,
That it may help and succour us.
5. O Brahmanaspati, make thou Kakshivan Ausija a loud
Chanter of flowing Soma juice!
6. Much honoured with libations may the Vritra-slayer watch for us:
May Sakra listen to our prayer
7. Send us this day, God Savitar, prosperity with progeny
Drive thou the evil dream away!
8. Where is that ever-youthful Steer, strong-necked and never yet bent down?
What Brahman ministers to him?
9. There where the mountains downward slope, there at the meeting of the streams
The Sage was manifest by song.
10. Praise Indra whom our songs must laud, sole sovran of mankind, the chief
Most liberal who controlleth men


I Indra and others

1. Indra whose jaws are strong hath drunk of worshipping Sudaksha’s draught,
The Soma juice with barley brew.
2. O Lord of ample wealth, these songs of praise have called aloud to thee,
Like milch-kine lowing to their calves!
3. Then straight they recognized the mystic name of the creative Steer,
There in the mansion of the Moon.
4. When Indra, strongest hero, brought the streams, the mighty waters down,
Pushan was standing by his side.
5. The Cow, the streaming mother of the liberal Maruts, pours her milk,
Harnessed to draw their chariots on.
6. Come, Lord of rapturous joys, to our libation with thy bay steeds, come
With bay steeds to the flowing juice
7. Presented strengthening gifts have sent Indra away at sacrifice,
With night, unto the cleansing bath.
8. I from my Father have received deep knowledge of eternal Law:
I was born like unto the Sun.
9. With Indra splendid feasts be ours, rich in all strengthening things, wherewith,
Wealthy in food, we may rejoice
10. Soma and Pushan, kind to him who travels to the Gods, provide
Dwellings all happy and secure.

II Indra

1. Invite ye Indra with a song to drink your draught of Soma steeds, juice,
All-conquering Satakratu, most munificent of all who live
2. Sing ye a song, to make him glad, to Indra, Lord of tawny
The Soma-drinker, O my friends!
3. This, even this, O Indra, we implore: as thy devoted friends
The Kanvas praise thee with their hymns!
4. For Indra, lover of carouse, loud be our songs about the juice
Let poets sing the song of praise.
5. Here, Indra, is thy Soma draught, made pure upon the sacred grass:
Run hither, come and drink thereof
6. As a good cow to him who milks, we call the doer of good deeds
To our assistance duy by day.
7. Hero, the Soma being shed, I pour the juice for thee to drink
Sate thee and finish thy carouse!
8. The Soma, Indra, which is shed in saucers and in cups for thee,
Drink thou, for thou art lord thereof!
9. In every need, in every fray we call, as friends, to succour us,
Indra, the mightiest of all.
10. O come ye hither, sit ye down: to Indra sing ye forth your song,
Companions, bringing hymns of praise

III Indra

1. So, Lord of affluent gifts, this juice hath been expressed for thee with strength:
Drink of it, thou who lovest song!
2. Great is our Indra from of old; greatness be his, the Thunderer
Wide as the heaven extends his might.
3. Indra, as one with mighty arm, gather for us with thy right hand
Manifold and nutritious spoil!
4. Praise, even as he is known, with song Indra the guardian of the kine,
The Son of Truth, Lord of the brave.
5. With what help will he come to us, wonderful, ever-waxing friend?
With what most mighty company?
6. Thou speedest down to succour us this ever-conquering God of yours
Him who is drawn to all our songs.
7. To the assembly’s wondrous Lord, the lovely friend of Indra, I
Had prayed for wisdom and successs.
8. May all thy paths beneath the sky whereby thou speddest Vyasva on,
Yea, let all spaces hear our voice
9. Bring to us all things excellent, O Satakratu, food and strength,
For, Indra, thou art kind to us!
10. Here is the Soma ready pressed: of this the Maruts, yea, of this,
Self-luminous the Asvins drink.

IV Indra and others

1. Tossing about, the active ones came nigh to Indra at his birth,
Winning themselves heroic might.
2. Never, O Gods, do we offend, nor are we ever obstinate
We walk as holy texts command.
3. Evening is come: sing loudly thou Atharvan’s nobly singing son:
Give praise to Savitar the God!
4. Now Morning with her earliest light shines forth, dear daughter of the Sky:
High, Asvins, I extol your praise.
5. Armed with the bones of dead Dadhyach, Indra, with unresisted might
The nine-and-ninety Vritras slew.
6. Come, Indra, and delight thee with the juice at all our Soma feasts,
Protector, mighty in thy strength
7. O thou who slayest Vritras, come, O Indra, hither to our side,
Mighty one, with thy mighty aids!
8. That might of his shone brightly forth when Indra brought together, like
A skin, the worlds of heaven and earth,
9. This is thine own Thou drawest near, as turns a pigeon to his mate:
Thou carest, too, for this our prayer.
10. May Vata breathe his balm on us, healthful, delightful to our heart:
May he prolong our days of life

V Indra and others

1. Ne’er is he injured whom the Gods Varuna, Mitra, Aryam.
The excellently wise, protect.
2. According to our wish for kine, for steeds and chariots, as of old,
Be gracious to our wealthy chiefs
3. Indra, these spotted cows yield thee their butter and the milky draught,
Aiders, thereby, of sacrifice.
4. That thou much-lauded! many-named! mayst, with this thought, that longs for milk,
Come to each Soma sacrifice.
5. May bright Sarasvati, endowed with plenteous wealth and spoil, enriched
With prayer, desire the sacrifice.
6. Why ‘mid the Nahusha tribes shall sate this Indra with his Soma juice?
He shall bring precious things to us.
7. Come, we have pressed the juice for thee; O Indra, drink this Soma here:
Sit thou on this my sacred grass
8. Great, unassailable must be the heavenly favour of the Three,
Varuna, Mitra, Aryaman.
9. We, Indra, Lord of ample wealth, our guide, depend on one like thee,
Thou driver of the tawny steeds!