12 Religious Ontology and Taxonomic Structures in Indo-Iranian Oral Poetry

Velizar Sadovski

 

12.1 Cataloguing the Universe – (Re-)creating the Universe: Arrangement of Conceptual Lists and Their Items in Indo-Iranian Ritual/Magic Poetry

0. Since the beginning of the last century, researchers of oral literature and religious studies have been discussing the connection between sacred words and sacred rites in ancient cultures—between speech and performance in religious and magic ritual. One of the pertinent subjects in this regard was and is the literary genre of catalogues and lists in sacred poetry,1 in prayer and cult. In fact, both speech acts and ritual actions share a common feature: If priests and poets systematize the universe in the form of extensive lists, they are believed to exercise magical influence on it. By cataloguing the universe, worshippers try to find an underlying matrix system—but also to re-shape and re-create it magically over and over again. That is why the logic of arrangement of conceptual cata-logues and their items in Indo-Iranian ritual poetry can shed light on the religious ontology and the systems of values and priorities of the worshippers and societies concerned. 

0.1. The interest in this subject started in Near Eastern studies, due to the abundance of lists and catalogues in Sumerian, Akkadian and Hebrew sources: In the 1930s, Wolfram von Soden apostrophized such forms in Semitic as ‘list scholarship,’ Listenwissenschaft2—not without a (negatively) judgmental connotation: He claimed that while Old Semitic poetry and science consisted mainly in lists, (Aryan,) Indo-European literature was much more ‘sophisticated’ in its expressive forms and devices. But this strong opinion completely ignored the fact that precisely Indo-Iranian ‘ritual literature’ operates to a large extent with list forms as basic structural units. This is valid not only for analytic, scholarly texts (Sūtras etc.) but especially for ritual poetry: Rough empirical statistics concerning Old Indian and Old Iranian corpora show that various types of lists and catalogues form e.g. about 25% of the contents of the Atharvaveda (Śaunaka and Paippalāda versions), and up to 30% of the Avesta—proportions that speak for themselves. 

0.2. Comparative and contrastive studies of the literary genre of catalogues increased in the last decades, after the discovery of new materials in Egyptian and Ancient Mesopotamian but also in Indo-European contexts3 as well as on the border between various traditions.4 Authors like Jack Goody developed entire ‘theories of lists’;5 lists of objects in decorative art6 have been compared to lists in literature7 (scriptual and oral!). After multiple discussions during the Melammu conference in Sofia (2008), a number of research projects gave rise to an interdisciplinary forum on multilingualism, linguae francae and the history of knowledge in different linguistic and chronological contexts—the Multilingualism Research Group, which culminated in a series of annual meetings that have been taking place in recent years and have regularly included workshops on problems of classification and systematization of knowledge (among others, in the form of lists and catalogues): The research group unites partners from the University of Oslo (Jens E. Braarvig), the TOPOI Cluster at the Freie Universität and the Max-Planck-Gesellschaft in Berlin (Florentina Badalanova Geller, Markham J. Geller), the University of Bologna (Antonio Panaino), of the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität of Munich (Olav Hackstein, Peter-Arnold Mumm), the DARIOSH Project at L’Orientale University of Naples (Adriano Rossi) and the University of Viterbo (Ela Filippone), La Sapienza University of Rome (Maria Carmela Benvenuto, Flavia Pompeo), the University of Verona (Paola Cotticelli), the University of Vienna (Gebhard Selz and his team, in communication with the European project group Classifiers), and the Austrian Academy of Sciences (V. Sadovski). Several thematic conferences and panels on the role of classification in the history of knowledge took place in Athens,8 Vienna (2009,9 2010,10 201111), Berlin (2010,12 201113), Marburg,14 and Münster,15 a seminar on multilingualism in Chinese Turkestan was organized at the University of Munich in the Summer Semester 2009. Volumes with a selection of relevant proceedings have appeared in the Sitzungsberichte of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna as well as in the publication series of the Max-Planck-Gesellschaft in Berlin (cf. Braarvig et al. 2012, 2013). 

0.3. My specific research interest concerns the comparative Indo-Iranian perspective:16 In the last five years, I have been intensely co-operating with the Leiden project of a critical edition of the Atharvaveda-Paippalāda fragments, initiated by Michael Witzel and continued by Alexander Lubotsky who kindly gave me access to the new manuscript materials.17 The result so far comprises four comparative publications on aspects of ritual poetry and pragmatics—two appeared 2008 and 2009 in the Festschrift Fragner and Festschrift Eichner, respectively, and two further studies are in press in the proceedings of the Fifth Vedic Workshop18 and of the Marburg panel Systematization of Universe of the Congress of the Deutsche Morgenländische Gesellschaft.19 Further (so far, nine) papers, given e.g. at the 12th World Sanskrit Conference (Delhi, 2009), the European Conferences of Iranian Studies in Vienna, Salamanca and Cracow (2007–11), two Vedic Workshops in Bucharest (2010–11) as well as in seminars on Indo-Iranian language and cultural history in Leiden (2007–11), have been presenting pertinent material for a monograph in preparation on various spheres of life as reflected in ritual texts containing lists and catalogues. Beyond analysis of figures of speech on a formal, esp. syntactic level (as published in Sadovski 2006 and Sadovski 2007), I have engaged in comparative and typological investigations of stylistic repetition, Textgestaltung, and form variation in the Avesta and Veda on the level of major text units—among them, diverse categories of lists and enumerations. The major topics of Indo-Iranian catalogues can be seen in Table 1, arranged in a sort of a ‘list of lists’:
 

A. Semantic features of list items, e.g.:

1. ‘Cosmo-logical’ lists.
2. ‘Anthropo-logical,’ esp. ‘physio-logical’/‘somato-graphical’ lists.
3. ‘Glotto-logical’ lists.
4. ‘Numero/arithmo-logical’ lists.
5. ‘Socio-logical’ lists.
6. ‘Chrono-logical’ lists.
7. ‘Topo-logical’ lists.
8. ‘Axio-logical’ lists.
9. ‘Genea-logical’ lists.
10. Akolouthiai: Lists of routines and (ritual[ized]) procedures.
11. ‘Theo-logical’ lists.
12. Complex structures.
 

B. Structural features of lists, e.g.: 

Intradependency (within list): 

(α.) Dimensionality: linear vs. non-linear structures.
(β.) Coordination and subordination of items: head-initial, head-final, multi- 

headed list(s) etc.
(γ.) Order of items and directionality within list(s).
(δ.) Correlativity of items within list(s).
(ε.) Variability of items within list(s).
(ς.) Cyclicity vs. openness of list(s). 

Interdependency (between lists): 

(ζ.) Repetitiveness and recursivity.
(η.) Hierarchy between lists, within ‘super-list(s)’
(θ.) ‘Meta-lists of/about lists.’
 

The first table (A.) summarizes aspects of the semantic variety of list contents: Here we find ‘cosmo-logical’ lists including items of the macro-cosm, and lists of anthropo-logically relevant elements, of the (human) micro-cosm: e.g. the ones concerning the physio-logical sphere or mapping of the human body (the ‘somato-graphical’ lists of healing spells or poetical descriptions of heroes, warriors, of beloved beings, and even of gods depicted in ‘anthropomorphic’ ways). Other types comprise ‘glotto-logical’ structures: phono-logical plays, entire morpho-logical paradigms, embedded in etymo-logical games of magic character, even meta-lists of linguistic items. Many enumerative sequences exhibit numero-logical regularities. Further components of the anthropological sphere are registered, e.g. by lists of ‘socio-logical’ elements and features with relevance for the community. Chrono- and topo-logical lists display measures of time and spatial representations. ‘Axio-logical’ lists explicitly valorize concepts of spiritual life and the surrounding macro- and microcosm. Various forms of genea-logies represent the idea of continuity (in the form of lists): in the regular case, we have to do with lists of names (onomastic catalogues) sensu lato, very often of sacral character.20 And finally, higher themes of spiritual character are subject of theo-logical lists and complex structures like catalogues of theogony, speculative hymns, phrophecies and eschatological visions. The second table (B.) regards structural features. In this framework, we can discuss selected aspects of list types 1–3 in a more detailed way; the groups 4–10 are subject to two further studies, to appear in (Braarvig et.al. forthcoming) and in a volume of the series Sitzungsberichte der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, Phil.-hist. Klasse, respectively. 

12.2 Structure of Poetic/Magic Lists and Their Contents: Internal and External References

1. If we go directly to the material, in both branches of Indo-Iranian sacred poetry we can discover a whole ‘cosmo-logia magica’: Mantras and prayers list the Universe in magic catalogues of cosmological concepts—regularly arranged in axiological manner—starting from sacred components of the macro-cosm, going via ritual as intermediary between God and men, to end up focusing on sacred components of the micro-cosm: 

1.1. A common Old Indo-Iranian form of such lists appears in magic hymns for purification of the Universe, like the one in Atharvaveda-Paippalāda 9,25. The main mantra here is in Pāda 1d: ‘Let (Soma,) the one who purifies himself, purify me!’ What follows, is a series of characterizations of the universal reach of the act of purification by listing elements of the cosmos, varying in a ‘vertical’ manner, stanza by stanza:
 

(1a) sahasrākṣaṃ śatadhāraṃ
(1b) r̥ṣibhiḥ pavanaṃ kr̥tam |
(1c) tenā sahasradhāreṇa
(1d) pavamānaḥ punātu mā ||
(2a) yena pūtam antarikṣaṃ
(2b) yasmin vāyur adhi śritaḥ | […]
(3a) yena pūte dyāvāpr̥thivī
(3b) āpaḥ pūtā atho suvaḥ | […]
(4a) yena pūte ahorātre
(4b) diśaḥ pūtā uta yena pradeśāḥ | […]
(5a) yena pūtau sūryācandramasau
(5b) nakṣatrāṇi bhūtakr̥taḥ […]
(6a) yena pūtā vedir agniḥ
(6b) paridhayaḥ […]
(7a) yena pūtaṃ barhir ājyam atho haviḥ | […]
(8a) yena pūto yajño vaṣaṭkāra utāhutiḥ | […]
(9a) yena pūtau vrīhiyavau
(9b) yābhyāṃ yajño adhinirmitaḥ |
(10a) yena pūtā aśvā gāvo
(10b) atho pūtā ajāvayaḥ |
(10c) tenā sahasradhāreṇa
(10d) pavamānaḥ punātu mā ||

 

1. Of (a) thousand eyes, of (a) hundred streams
the purification (has been) made by the seers;
by means of this one of (a) thousand streams
let (Soma,) the one who purifies himself, purify me.
2. By which Intermediate Space (is/has been) purified
on which Wind dwells […].
3. By which (both,) Heaven-and-Earth (have been) purified,
Waters (have been) purified, also Sun […].
soll mich der sich Läuternde (S. Pavamāna) läutern
4. By which (both,) Day-and-Night (have been) purified,
Heavenly Regions (have been) purified and by which Earthly Regions […]
soll mich der sich Läuternde (S. Pavamāna) läutern;
5. By which (both), Sun-and-Moon (have been) purified,
Nakṣatra-s, Bhūtakr̥t-s […].
6. By which the Vedi, the Fire(-Altar) (have been) purified,
the Paridhi-s […].
7. By which the Barhiṣ, the Ājya(-oblation), the Haviṣ(-oblation) (has [= have] been) purified […].
8. By which Sacrifice/Ritual, the Vaṣaṭ-exclamation, and Libation (has [= have] been) purified […].
9. By which (both), Rice-and-Barley (have been) purified,
by both of which Sacrifice/Ritual has been ‘measured into shape’/fixed […].
10. By which horses, cows (have been) purified,
also goats-and-sheep (have been) purified,
by means of this one of (a) thousand streams
let (Soma,) the one who purifies himself, purify me.
 

1.1.1. The list structure is (stereo)typical. The main predication is constant (‘X is purified’), the formulaic context is repeated in each stanza—while only specific items change, forming simple list(s) with one variable or a group of variables. The list exhibits internal correspondence in a unidimensional, here ‘vertical,’ way, between the varying (groups of) items; this can be summarized by the scheme: 

Y (is) X […]; by which A & B are Y-ed / by which C & D are Y-ed / by which E & F are Y-ed …, let the Y-ing-oneself Y me.’ 

1.1.2. The list contains the most important cosmological elements—mostly presented in [natural] pairs, often as ‘dual dvandva’ compounds.21 When pronouncing each one of these ritual formulae, the Brahmán symbolically purifies the parts of the cosmos concerned. 

It starts with nature deities and their domains, such as the Intermediate Space (antarikṣa-) with the Wind (vāyu-, stanza 2, verses ab), the ‘Heaven-and-Earth’ (dyāvā-pr̥thivī, stanza 3a), the Waters (āpaḥ), the Sun[light] (súvàr, both 3b) and the Day-and-Night (aho-rātre, 4a). 

Then, the list evokes further structures of the macrocosm: the regions of heaven and of earth (4b), cellular bodies / divinities: the Sun-and-Moon (sūryā-candramasau, 5a), Asterisms: nakṣatras and bhūtakr̥ts (both 5b);22 

They are followed by basic components of Vedic ritual: sacrificial ground (vedi-); agni- [here “fire altar”; both 6a], sacrificial materials: the paridhis (6b), the barhiṣ-, oblations like ājya- and haviṣ- etc. (7a–8b), as well as 

the central sacrificial plants—rice and barley (vrīhi-yavau, 9a, with a specification concerning their function in ritual, 9b)—and the most important domestic and sacrificial animals23—cows and horses (10a, also in TB. outside compounds, as simplicia), goats-and-sheep (10b, also in TB. in a dvandva compound). 

The elements of the list are arranged: 

partly in accord with the increasing length of the sound complex (Behaghel’s law)—cf. e.g. in § 1.1.3. below (bahv-)ajāviká- (2-syllabic aja- + 3-syllabic avika-), (bahu-)dāsa-pūruṣá- (2-syllabic dāsa- + 3-syllabic pū̆ruṣa-), 

partly in decreasing gradations (anticlimax): e.g. from horse/cow to smaller cattle (goats, sheep), with form variation between lists regarding the order of the first elements: horsecow or cowhorse, mostly depending on the social perspective—obviously, cows being the animals consecrated to priests (as their primordial dakṣiṇa-), and horses belonging to kings [-and-warriors] (kṣatrī̆ya-). For similar gradations in parallel lists in Avestan (male camel–male horse–bull–cow) see § 1.3.2.3. 

1.1.3. The same groups of concepts of the triad macro-cosm–ritual–micro-cosm also appear in Yajurveda mantras, such as the one (in TB. 3,8,5,2–3, BaudhŚS 15,5,209, ĀpŚS 20,4,3) referring to the benediction of the king during the great inaugural horse sacrifice. On its structure cf. (Sadovski 2002, 359): Listed are, first, the valuable animals, above all, cows/cattle, horses, then uncloven-hoofed herd-animals, followed by the most important crops, precious metals and ivory (“elephants” perhaps to be understood here as a metonymy), and, finally, a summary through the general concepts of “wealth” and “blooming/prosperity.”
 

TB. 3,8,5,2–3: […] hótā /
paścā́t prā́ṅ tíṣṭhan prókṣati /
anénā́śvena médhyeneṣṭvā́ /
ayáṁ rā́jāsyái viśáḥ//
bahugvái bahvaśvā́yai bahvajāvikā́yai /
bahuvrīhiyavā́yai bahumāṣatilā́yai /
bahuhiraṇyā́yai bahuhastíkāyai /
bahudāsapūruṣā́yai rayimátyai púṣṭimatyai /
bahurāyaspoṣā́yai rā́jāstv íti/
 

[...] the Hotar sprinkles [the horse] standing on the West [facing] to the East with these words: ‘By means of the sacrifice “with” / of this horse (= after/while one sacrifices this horse), which is fit for sacrifice, may this (king) be (the) king of this settlement, which has
many cows, many horses, many goats-and-sheep,
much rice-and-barley,
much beans-and-sesame,
much gold, many elephants,
many slaves-and-servants,
which has wealth, which has prosperity,
which has much wealth-and-prosperity.’ 

1.2. This form of ritual-poetic expression is Indo-Iranian. Also in the Avesta we can observe such lists in identical rituals of purification of universe by Haoma, the Iranian counterpart of Soma. Thus, Zaraθuštra lists all relevant concepts of the macro- and micro-cosm in the typical form of questions and answers: ‘How shall I purify the house, how the fire, how the water, how the earth, how the cow, how the plant [the stars, the moon, the sun, and so on]?’ Ahura Mazdā’s answer is that already the mere uttering of the purification formula brings purification! Speech acts and ritual acts of purification coincide, in a unity of mantras and ritual actions; theoreticians of linguistic pragmatics like John Austin and John Searle would call this a ‘performative speech act.’—Cf. Vd. 11,1–2:
 

[…] kuθa nmānəm yaoždaθāni
kuθa ātrəm kuθa āpəm
kuθa ząm kuθa gąm kuθa uruuarąm
kuθa narəm aṣ̌auuanəm kuθa nāirikąm aṣ̌aonīm
kuθa strə̄š kuθa mā̊ŋhəm
kuθa huuarə kuθa anaγra raocā̊
kuθa vīspa vohu mazdaδāta aṣ̌aciθra
āat̰ mraot̰ ahurō mazdā̊:
yaoždāθrəm srāuuaiiōiš zaraθuštra
yaoždāta pascaēta bun nmāna
yaoždāta ātrəm yaoždāta āpəm
yaoždāta ząm yaoždāta gąm yaoždāta uruuarąm
yaoždāta narəm aṣ̌auuanəm yaoždāta nāirikąm aṣ̌aonīm
yaoždāta strə̄š yaoždāta mā̊ŋhəm
yaoždāta huuarə yaoždāta anaγra raocā̊
yaoždāta vīspa vohu mazdaδāta aṣ̌aciθra
 

‘[…] How shall I purify the house,
how the Fire, how the Water,
how the Earth, how the Cow, how the Plant,
how the aṣ̌a-ous Man, how the aṣ̌a-ous Woman,
how the Stars, how the Moon,
how the Sun, how the beginningless Lights
how all the Good, the Mazdā-created, the aṣ̌a-originated?’
Thus spake Ahura Mazdā:
‘You should let the purification (formulae) be heard, Zaraθuštra,
then the houses will become purified,
the Fire (will become) purified, purified the Water,
purified the Earth, purified the Cow, purified the Plant,
purified the aṣ̌a-ous Man, purified the aṣ̌a-ous Woman,
purified the Stars, purified the Moon,
purified the Sun, purified the beginningless Lights
purified all the Good, the Mazdā-created, the aṣ̌a-originated.’
 

Furthermore, in a rain spell + purification mantra (Vd. 21) we find more complex configurations of multiple list types, incl. elaborate parallelismus membrorum. 

1.3. In such ritual lists, we can observe various structures, starting from the simple to more complex schemes: They are characterized by repetitiveness and correlation of items within lists and between them. 

1.3.1.1. The structure of the simple list type is similar to the one in § 1.1.1., with one variable or a group of variables. Scheme: ABCDEXF / ABCDEYF / ABCDEZF … (the variables being set in italics). 

One of the most important sorts of simple lists in mantras of the Yajurveda and Atharvaveda is the list of ‘identifications-and-consequences (± praise/invocation)’—schemes e.g.: “Xnoun xverb-s, Xnoun may xverb me(, hail!)”; “X is Y, X may give Y(, hail!)” (core mantra of the expanded version in § 1.1.1.); with invocation: “You are A, you may give A(, hail!); you are B, you may give B(, hail!)…,” or, with a syllogism-like, consecutive relationship, “X is Y; X being Y, should do Z, (hail!/come!/go forth! etc.).” This is the typical form of praises, prayers, invocations, and request spells, where the variables regularly contain entire lists of capacities and vital forces (often closed—tetradic, pentadic etc.—, conventional catalogues of senses, powers, abilities etc.).—AVŚ. 2,17:
 

ójoasiy ójo me dāḥ svā́hā /1//
sáhoasi sáho me dāḥ svā́hā //2//
bálam asi bálaṃ me dāḥ svā́hā //3//
ā́yur asiy ā́yur me dāḥ svā́ha //4//
śrótram asi śrótraṃ me dāḥ svā́ha //5//
cákṣur asi cákṣur me dāḥ svā́ha //6//
paripā́ṇam asi paripā́ṇaṃ me dāḥ svā́ha //7//
 

1. Force art thou; force mayest thou give me: hail!
2. Power art thou; power mayest thou give me: hail!
3. Strength art thou; strength mayest thou give me: hail!
4. Life-time art thou; life-time mayest thou give me: hail!
5. Hearing art thou; hearing mayest thou give me: hail!
6. Sight art thou; sight mayest thou give me: hail!
7. Protection art thou; protection mayest thou give me: hail!
(Whitney and Lanman 1905, vol. 1, 61)

 

1.3.1.2. An expanded variant of the scheme shows one main variable consisting of items grouped pairwise. This form is more complex than the one in § 1.1.1 (Scheme: ABCDEFG) / ABCDEF'(±G') / ABCDEHI) / ABCDEH'(±I'), the variables being set in underlined italics), with regard to the categories of items and includes concepts of cosmo-, theo- and socio-logical significance. The constants in this catalogue of abilities (the nomina praedicati: force; power; strength; heroism; manliness) form a pentadic group and are largely identical with the variables of the last example AVŚ 2,17 in § 1.3.1.1.! 

This format appears in magic lists of the type present in the Śaunakīya-Atharvaveda (AVŚ 10,5,1–2.6), where the basic mantra sounds like this: 

‘Indra’s force are you; Indra’s power are you; Indra’s strength are you; Indra’s heroism are you; Indra’s manliness are you; with X-junctions I join you.’ 

In this sequence of elements—a typical Indo-Iranian pentadic group (paṅkti-)—, only the last term changes, stanza by stanza, forming a couple every two stanzas: bráhman- and kṣatrá- (stanzas 1–2)—the pair represents the eponymous qualities of two higher social groups (brahmán- ‘brahmin’ and kṣatríya- ‘king[-and-warrior]’),—índra- and sóma- (3–4), king’s power and manliness (5 to 6). 

índrasya- ja stha- ndrasya sáha stha- ndrasya bálaṃ stha-
ndrasya vīryà1ṃ stha- ndrasya nr̥mṇáṃ stha /
jiṣṇáve yógāya brahmayogaír vo yunajmi //1//
U = X’s A, U = X’s B,
U = X’s C, U = X’s D,
U = X’s E …
with K I join you.
índrasya- ja stha- ndrasya sáha stha- ndrasya bálaṃ stha-
ndrasya vīryà1ṃ stha- ndrasya nr̥mṇáṃ stha /
jiṣṇáve yógāya kṣatrayogaír vo yunajmi //2//
U = X’s A, U = X’s B,
U = X’s C, U = X’s D,
U = X’s E …
with L I join you.
índrasya- ja stha- ndrasya sáha stha- ndrasya bálaṃ stha-
ndrasya vīryà1ṃ stha- ndrasya nr̥mṇáṃ stha /
jiṣṇáve yógāyendrayogáir vo yunajmi //3//
U = X’s A, U = X’s B,
U = X’s C, U = X’s D,
U = X’s E …
with M I join you.
índrasya- ja stha- ndrasya sáha stha- ndrasya bálaṃ stha-
ndrasya vīryà1ṃ stha- ndrasya nr̥mṇáṃ stha /
jiṣṇáve yógāya somayogaír vo yunajmi //4//
U = X’s A, U = X’s B,
U = X’s C, U = X’s D,
U = X’s E …
with N I join you.
índrasya- ja stha- ndrasya sáha stha- ndrasya bálaṃ stha-
ndrasya vīryà1ṃ stha- ndrasya nr̥mṇáṃ stha /
jiṣṇáve yógāyāpsuyogáir vo yunajmi //5//
U = X’s A, U = X’s B,
U = X’s C, U = X’s D,
U = X’s E …
with O I join you.
índrasya- ja stha- ndrasya sáha stha- ndrasya bálaṃ stha-
ndrasya vīryà1ṃ stha- ndrasya nr̥mṇáṃ stha /
jiṣṇáve yógāya víśvānibhūtā́ny
úpa tiṣṭhantu yuktā́ ma āpa stha //6//
U = X’s A, U = X’s B,
U = X’s C, U = X’s D,
U = X’s E …
let all P wait upon me; joined to me are you, Q.

1. Indra’s force are ye; Indra’s power are ye;
Indra’s strength are ye; Indra’s heroism are ye; Indra’s manliness are ye;
unto a conquering junction (yoga-) with brahman-junctions I join you.
2. Indra’s force are ye; Indra’s power are ye;
Indra’s strength are ye; Indra’s heroism are ye;
Indra’s manliness are ye;
unto a conquering junction, with kṣatra-junctions I join you.
3. Indra’s force are ye; Indra’s power are ye;
Indra’s strength are ye; Indra’s heroism are ye;
Indra’s manliness are ye;
unto a conquering junction, with indra-junctions I join you.
4. Indra’s force are ye; Indra’s power are ye;
Indra’s strength are ye; Indra’s heroism are ye;
Indra’s manliness are ye;
unto a conquering junction, with soma-junctions I join you.
5. Indra’s force are ye; Indra’s power are ye;
Indra’s strength are ye; Indra’s heroism are ye;
Indra’s manliness are ye;
unto a conquering junction, with water-junctions I join you.
6. Indra’s force are ye; Indra’s power are ye;
Indra’s strength are ye; Indra’s heroism are ye;
Indra’s manliness are ye;
unto a conquering junction; let all existences wait upon (upa-sthā) me; joined to me are ye, O waters.24
 

1.3.2. Intra-textual correlation: More complex list types exhibit item variation not simply of one variable element (group)—like in § 1.1.[1.] and § 1.3.1.—but of at least two variable item groups per list with internal correlation both between the individual variables A and a within each formula (‘horizontally,’ § 1.3.2.1.)—scheme: AXYZaXYZ—and between the variables (A, B, C, D, E…, a, b, c, d, e) of the different formulae within the list, on the ‘vertical’ axis: Scheme: AXYZaX'YZ / BXYZbX'YZ / CXYZcX'YZ… (§ 1.3.2.2.). In the list structure, the predication, again, is constant, the formulaic context is repeated—specific items vary, forming this time complex list(s) with both internal correspondence and correlation between at least two variable groups of items within one textual unit (hymn, incantation)—i.e. intra-textual correlation. 

1.3.2.1. Thus, in the hymn AVP. 7,14 the magic formula for giving life mystically unites cosmo-logical elements of the higher, theo-logical sphere, with their inherent counterparts in nature: Fire and wood, Sun and sky etc.—The basic mantra sounds: 

A is full of life: he is full of life due to a. (So,) full of life, let him make me full of life’— 

e.g. AVP 7,14,1: agnir āyuṣmān ′ sa vanaspatibhir āyuṣmān | sa yuṣmān āyuṣmantaṃ kr̥ṇotu ‘Agni/Fire is full of life: he is full of life (by means) of/with/due to the trees/lords of the forest. (So,) full of life, let him make me full of life.’ 

1.3.2.2. On the vertical axis, within the list AVP. 7,14 we find a first paṅkti- (pentadic group) of internally correlating items in stanzas 1–5. It includes five nature deities, which take the position of the first variable element (A, B, C, D, E): Fire, Wind, Sun, Moon, Soma. The second variable (a, b, c, d, e) contains the natural environments of these natural deities: trees for the Fire, space for the Wind, sky for the Sun… In the middle (stanza 6) we find the deified Ritual (Yajña). Then, another five deities are listed as a second paṅkti- (Stanzas 7–11): Indus, Brahman, Indra, the Viśve Devāḥ, Prajāpati. I have isolated similar schemes e.g. in the Seventh book of Atharvaveda-Paippalāda: ‘A is X; he is X due to a; being X, let him make me X. B is X; he is X due to b; being X, let him make me X.’
 

Agni/Fire is full of life (or: life-giving, vivificans): he is full of life by (means of)/with/due to the lords of the wood (the trees). (So,) full of life, let him make me full of life.
Vāyu/Wind is full of life: he is full of life by/with the intermediate space. (So,) full of life, let him make me full of life.
Sūrya/Sun is full of life: he is full of life by/with the sky. (So,) full of life, let him make me full of life.
Candra/Moon is full of life: he is full of life by/with the asterisms. (So,) full of life, let him make me full of life.
Soma is full of life: he is full of life by/with the plants. (So,) full of life, let him make me full of life.
Yajña/Sacrifice (Ritual) is full of life: he is full of life by/with the sacerdotal fees. (So,) full of life, let him make me full of life.
The Confluence (Indus/Ocean?) is full of life: he is full of life by/with the rivers. (So,) full of life, let him make me full of life.
Brahman / the formula(tion) is full of life: it is full of life by/with the brahmacārins. (So,) full of life, let it make me full of life.
Indra is full of life: he is full of life by/with the potency. (So,) full of life, let him make me full of life.
The (All-)Gods are full of life: they are full of life by/with the amr̥ta-. (So,) full of life, let them make me full of life.
Prajāpati / The Lord of (Pro-)Creation is full of life: he is full of life by/with the (pro)creations/progenies/descendants. (So,) full of life, let him make me full of life. 

AVP. 7,14 (ed. Griffiths 2009, ad loc.; transl. partly modified): Scheme:
agnir āyuṣmān ′ sa vanaspatibhir āyuṣmān |
sa māyuṣmān āyuṣmantaṃ kr̥ṇotu ||1||
A is X; he is X due to a; as X, let him make me X.
vāyur āyuṣmān ′ so 'ntarikṣeṇāyuṣmān
sa māyuṣmān āyuṣmantaṃ kr̥ṇotu ||2||
B is X; he is X due to b; as X, let him make me X.

sūrya āyuṣmān ′ sa divāyuṣmān |
sa māyuṣmān āyuṣmantaṃ kr̥ṇotu ||3||
C is X; he is X due to c; as X, let him make me X.
candra āyuṣmān ′ sa nakṣatrair āyuṣmān |
sa māyuṣmān āyuṣmantaṃ kr̥ṇotu ||4||
D is X; he is X due to d; as X, let him make me X.
soma āyuṣmān ′ sa oṣadhībhir āyuṣmān |
sa māyuṣmān āyuṣmantaṃ kr̥ṇotu ||5||
E is X; he is X due to e; as X, let him make me X.
yajña āyuṣmān ′ sa dakṣiṇābhir āyuṣmān |
sa māyuṣmān āyuṣmantaṃ kr̥ṇotu ||6||
F is X; he is X due to f; as X, let him make me X.
samudra āyuṣmān ′ sa nadībhir āyuṣmān |
sa māyuṣmān āyuṣmantaṃ kr̥ṇotu ||7||
G is X; he is X due to g; as X, let him make me X.
brahmāyuṣmat ′ tad brahmacāribhir āyuṣmat |
tan māyuṣmad āyuṣmantaṃ kr̥ṇotu ||8||
H is X; it is X due to h; as X, let it make me X.
indra āyuṣmān ′ sa vīryeṇāyuṣmān |
sa māyuṣmān āyuṣmantaṃ kr̥ṇotu ||9||
I is X; he is X due to i; as X, let him make me X.
devā āyuṣmantas ′ te 'mr̥tenāyuṣmantaḥ |
te māyuṣmanta āyuṣmantaṃ kr̥ṇvantu ||10||
J is X; he is X due to j; as X, let them make me X.
prajāpatir āyuṣmān ′ sa prajābhir āyuṣmān |
sa māyuṣmān āyuṣmantaṃ kr̥ṇotu ||11||
K is X; he is X due to k; as X, let him make me X.

1.3.2.3. In the same way, we find double-list structures with parallelism of two variables—again, in purification rituals—both in the Atharvaveda (Śaunaka / Paippalāda) and in the Avesta—, for instance with lists of socio-logically relevant concepts of the kind: 

‘You should purify A (in exchange) for a, B (in exchange) for b, C (in exchange) for c.’ 

Here, the variable element X represents persons of high social circles in decreasing enumeration / gradation: a priest (A), a ‘country-lord of a country’ (B), a ‘clan-lord of a clan’ (C), a ‘settlement-lord of a settlement’ (D) a ‘house-lord of a house’ (E)—a sequence containing a stylistically marked, continuous paronomastic structure with etymological relation between its elements (cf. Sadovski 2006, 531–535). The variable element Y comprises the dakṣiṇas for purification of these persons, arranged in decreasing axiological order of appearance: camel/horse/bull/cow: 

Vd. 9,37: āθrauuanəm yaoždaθō Purify an A
dahmaiiāt̰ parō āfritōit̰ for an a (in exchange).
daiŋ́hə̄uš daiŋ́hu.paitīm yaoždaθō Purify a B-lord of B
uštrahe paiti aršnō aγriiehe for a b [male] top-animal.
zaṇtə̄uš zaṇtu.paitīm yaoždaθō Purify a C-lord of C
aspahe paiti aršnō aγriiehe for a c [male] top-animal.
vīsō vīspaitīm yaoždaθō Purify a D-lord of D
gə̄uš paiti uxšnō aγriiehe for a d [male] animal.
nmānahe nmānō.paitīm yaoždaθō Purify a E-lord of E
gə̄uš paiti aziiā̊ for an e [fem.] animal.

You should purify a priest
for a dahma-ful blessing;
you should purify a country-lord of a country
for / against a male camel of top/extreme (value);
you should purify a clan-lord of a clan
for / against a horse, a stallion (a “horse-stallion”) of extreme (value); you should purify a settlement-lord of a settlement
for / against a [male] cow, a bull (a “cow-bull”) of extreme (value);
you should purify a house-lord of a house
for / against a cow, a fertile cow.
 

1.3.2.3.1. For the figure ‘settlement-lord of a settlement,’ Avestan vīsō vīspaiti, we can find good parallels in Vedic, RV. 9,108,10b viś-páti- viśā́m—cf. also ‘cow-herd of cows’ in RV.+ go-páti- gávām (gónām), and in Greek (Hom.+) (ἐπι)βου-κόλος βοῶν, so-to-say, ‘cow-boy of cows’ (!), as opposed to lexicalized βου-κόλος ὑῶν ‘cow-herd of pigs’ (Hom.+). For evidence of Mycenaean, Homeric, Archaic and Classical expressions (like ἵπποι […] βου-κολέοντο ‘the horses were shepherded’ in Iliad 20,221f. or ἱππο-βουκόλος ‘horse-shepherd,’ actually “horse-cowboy,” in Sophokles), I refer to (Panagl 1999), esp. 439–443, with my addendum (ibid., p. 442) on parallel Indo-Iranian material in expressions like áśvānāṃ gópati- “cow-lord of horses [quasi ‘ἱππο-βουκόλος’]” beside gávāṃ gópati- “cow-lord of cows” (in RV. 1,101,4a yó áśvānāṃ yó gávāṃ gópatir vaśī́). Compare the lexicalization of Engl. shepherd, which is not necessarily related by synchronic language speakers with the original etymological domain of Late Old Engl. scēap-hierde ‘sheep-herd’25 but is largely used in generic sense of ‘Hirte’ since the 18th century. 

1.3.2.3.2. In cases like Yt. 13,150, we find the same IIr. ‘hierarchy of social structures,’ this time in increasing enumeration (gradation): house (E)—settlement (D)—clan (C)—country (B; the symbol letters here correspond to the ones of the first list in § 1.3.1.). The variables here concern chrono-logical dimensions: past, future, present:
 

paoiriiąn t̰kaēšə̄ yazamaide We worship X
nmānanąmca vīsąmca of E and of D
zaṇtunąmca dax́iiunąmca and of C and of B
yōi ā̊ŋharə: who [BE-past].
paoiriiąn t̰kaēšə̄ yazamaide We worship X
nmānanąmca vīsąmca of E and of D
zaṇtunąmca dax́iiunąmca and of C and of B
yōi bābuuarə: who [BE-prospective]
paoiriiąn t̰kaēšə̄ yazamaide We worship X
nmānanąmca vīsąmca of E and of D
zaṇtunąmca dax́iiunąmca and of C and of B
yōi həṇti. who [BE-present].

We worship the first teachers
of the houses and of the settlements
and of the clans and of the countries
which were / have been (there).
We worship the first teachers
of the houses and of the settlements
and of the clans and of the countries
which will be (there).
We worship the first teachers
of the houses and of the settlements
and of the clans and of the countries
which are ([being] there). 

1.3.3. Inter-textual correlation: Still more complex list types include correlations between varying lists—not only within one textual unit (hymn, incantation)—like in § 1.3.2.[2.] and § 1.3.3.1 (Scheme: AXYZaX'YZ / BXYZbX'YZ / CXYZcX'YZ…)—but also between several textual units (§ 1.3.3.2.). Once more, yet again, the predication is constant, the context is repeated: specific items vary, forming complex list(s) with both internal correspondence and correlation between at least two variable groups of items—in this case, however, not only with intra-textual but also with inter-textual correlation of lists: 

1.3.3.1. The basic component here is an intra-textually correlative list (consisting, for its part, of sub-elements of simpler shape, as described in § 1.3.2.1.). In the hymn AVŚ. 2,19, for instance, the structure is: X, Anoun AverbY / X, Bnoun BverbY / X, Cnoun CverbY …—items varying and internally correlated within the list, from stanza to stanza. The pentadic list contains the invocational spells: ‘O, Agni, what your heat is, heat by/with it [our hater]; what your flame is, flame by it; what your beam(ray)/gleam/glare is, beam/gleam/glare by it.’ So, the intra-textual variation goes on through five stanzas, in which the deity addressed by listing its main attributes (essentially correlated with one another) is constantly the Fire-god: 

Invoc. Mantra: ‘O, X (= Fire), what your ABCDEnoun is, do ABCDEverb it against that one who hates us, whom we hate’.

AVŚ. 2,19:
ágne yát te tápas téna táṃ práti tapa
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||1||
Agni, what your heat is, heat
by it against Y […]
ágne yát te háras téna táṃ práti hara
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||2||
Agni, what your flame is, flame by it against Y […]
ágne yát te 'rcís téna táṃ prátiy arca
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||3||
Agni, what your beam (ray) is, beam by it against Y […]
ágne yát te śocís téna táṃ práti śoca
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||4||
Agni, what your gleam is, gleam by it against Y […]

ágne yát te téjas téna tám atejásaṃ kr̥ṇu
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||5||
Agni, what your glare/splendour is, make/render Y splendourless by it […].

1.3.3.2. However, this list itself is part of a complex ‘list of lists’: In Atharvaveda 2, hymns 19–22, the paṅkti of five stereotypic invocations is itself repeated five times, with variation of address to five gods, the ‘usual suspects’ of mantras of cosmological lists: Fire, Wind, Sun, Moon, Waters. This is the ‘inter-textual variation’ par excellence: Items vary and correlate not only within the list (= § 1.3.3.1.) but also correlate within a complex of 5 lists in total, represented by 5 hymns arranged one after the other: 

Invoc. Mantra: O, XYZVW (= Fire, Wind, Sun…), what your ABCDEnoun is, do ABCDEverb it against that one who hates us, whom we hate!

AVŚ. 2,19:
ágne yát te tápas téna táṃ práti tapa
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||1||
Agni, what your heat is, heat by it against Y […]
ágne yát te háras téna táṃ práti hara
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||2||
Agni, what your flame is, flame by it against Y […]
ágne yát te 'rcís téna táṃ prátiy arca
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||3||
Agni, what your beam
is, beam by it against Y […]
ágne yát te śocís téna táṃ práti śoca
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||4||
Agni, what your gleam is, gleam
by it against Y […]
ágne yát te téjas téna tám atejásaṃ kr̥ṇu
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||5||
Agni, what your glare/splendour is, make/render Y splendourless by it.

AVŚ. 2,20:
vā́yo yát te tápas téna táṃ práti tapa
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||1||
Vāyu, what your heat is, heat by it against Y […]
vā́yo yát te háras téna táṃ práti hara
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||2||
Vāyu, what your flame is, flame by it against Y […]
vā́yo yát te 'rcís téna táṃ prátiy arca
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||3||
Vāyu, what your beam is, beam
by it against Y […]
vā́yo yát te śocís téna táṃ práti śoca
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||4||
Vāyu, what your gleam is, gleam
by it against Y […]
vā́yo yát te téjas téna tám atejásaṃ kr̥ṇu
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||5||
Vāyu, what your glare/splendour is, make/render Y splendourless by it […]

AVŚ. 2,21:
sū́rya yát te tápas téna táṃ práti tapa
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||1||
Sūrya, what your heat is, heat by it against Y […] 
sū́rya yát te háras téna táṃ práti hara
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||2||
Sūrya, what your flame is, flame by it against Y […]
sū́rya yát te 'rcís téna táṃ prátiy arca
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||3||
Sūrya, what your beam is, beam
by it against Y […]
sū́rya yát te śocís téna táṃ práti śoca
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||4||
Sūrya, what your gleam is, gleam by it against Y […]
sū́rya yát te téjas téna tám atejásaṃ kr̥ṇu
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||5||
Sūrya, what your glare/splendour is, make/render Y splendourless by it […]

AVŚ. 2,22:
cándra yát te tápas téna táṃ práti tapa
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||1||
Candra, what your heat is, heat
by it against Y […]
cándra yát te háras téna táṃ práti hara
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||2||
Candra, what your flame is, flame by it against Y […]
cándra yát te 'rcís téna táṃ prátiy arca
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||3||
Candra, what your beam is, beam
by it against Y
cándra yát te śocís téna táṃ práti śoca
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||4||
Candra, what your gleam is, gleam
by it against Y […]
cándra yát te téjas téna tám atejásaṃ kr̥ṇu
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||5||
Candra, what your glare/splendour is, make/render Y splendourless by it […]

AVŚ. 2,23:
ā́po yád vas tápas téna táṃ práti tapata
yò ’asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||1||
Waters, what your heat is, heat by it against Y [...]
ā́po yád vo háras téna táṃ práti harata
yò ’asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||2||
Waters, what your flame is, flame by it against Y [...]
ā́po yád vo ’arcís téna táṃ prátiy arcata
yò ’asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||3||
Waters, what your beam (ray) is, beam
by it against Y [...]
ā́po yád vaḥ śocís téna táṃ práti śocata
yò ’asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||4||
Waters, what your gleam is, gleam by it against Y [...]
ā́po yád vas téjas téna tám atejásaṃ kr̥ṇuta
yò ’asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ ||5||
Waters, what your glare/splendour is, make/render Y splendourless by it [...].

Represented as a summarized list structure: 

AVŚ. 2,19: AVŚ. 2,20: AVŚ. 2,21: AVŚ. 2,22: AVŚ. 2,23:
ágne
+ Mantra
vā́yo
+ Mantra
sū́rya
+ Mantra
cándra
+ Mantra
ā́po
+ Mantra [Pl.]
A./Fire
(5 items)
V./Wind
(5 items)
S./Sun
(5 items)
C./Moon
(5 items)
Äp./Waters
(5 items)

1.3.3.3. As a result, we have a multi-dimensional list, with both “horizontal” and “vertical” relations within and beyond the individual list(s): the ultimate form of stereometric, multi-dimensional representation of the Universe. 

2,19 2,20 2,21 2,22 2,23 → Complex list ↓
Invoc. Invoc. Invoc. Invoc. Invoc. Mantra: ‘what your X is, do X' with it against that one who hates us, whom we hate’
ágne vā́yo sū́rya cándra ā́po yát te tápas téna táṃ práti tapa
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ |1|
ágne vā́yo sū́rya cándra ā́po yát te háras téna táṃ práti hara
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ |2|
ágne vā́yo sū́rya cándra ā́po yát te 'arcís téna táṃ prátiy arca
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ |3|
ágne vā́yo sū́rya cándra ā́po yát te śocís téna táṃ práti śoca
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ |4|
ágne vā́yo sū́rya cándra ā́po yát te téjas téna tám atejásaṃ kr̥ṇu
yò 'asmā́n dvéṣṭi yáṃ vayáṃ dviṣmáḥ |5|

In the Avesta, a similar form of intertexual communication occurring between Yašts (5, 9, 10, 12, 15…) is achieved by the common presence of stylistically repeated formulae in these texts. The internal correspondence of these formulae is based on chronological, genealogical (and even eschatological) principles: Each list stereotypically includes sacrificial activities in honor of a deity exercised by most prominent protagonists (and adversaries) of Mazdayasnism, in generational order culminating with Zaraθuštra. What then changes from one Yašt to another is the name of the honored deity. Taken together, these lists form one of the strongest cohesive elements of the corpus of the Yašts, just like their introductory formulae,26 which, in a very direct sense, can also be read as pentadic lists—each one consisting of five parts, parts 1–3 and 5 of which exhibiting a generally constant character, part 4 changing according to the part of the day (chronological axis) and the deity worshipped in the hymn (theo-logical axis). 

1.3.3.4. Both Indo-Iranian traditions know the type of multiple (triple/triadic, quadruple/tetradic etc.), expanding lists. The sophisticated Avestan instance in Yt. 3,7–16 displays three, successively expanding lists of spells; such complex forms of ritual curses have remarkably similar structure to Vedic mantra lists in spells against demons: 

The first list (Yt. 3,7–9) contains a general survey of adversaries of Zoroastrianism, of diseases and daēuuic creatures, addressing them directly, in an ‘exorcist’ manner. 

The second list (Yt. 3,10–13) represents an expanded form that subsumes the same creatures within an appeal to kill ‘thousands and ten thousand times ten thousands’ of them. 

The third turn (Yt. 14–16) contains a complex list of the same creatures, in positive and superlative form, within a lament of Aŋra Maińiiu about their elimination by Aṣ̌a. 

2.Physio-logia.’ Another genre of catalogues can be designated as ‘physio-logical,’ ‘physio-graphical,’ or better, ‘somato-graphical’ lists. They contain stylistically arranged enumerations of body parts and organs, very often displayed ‘from [the top of the] head to toe.’ 

2.1. In Indo-Iranian poetry, body-depicting lists are regularly present in healing spells; ritual chants consisting of body part enumerations serve to achieve (ritual) completion and perfection. Moreover, they can represent the universe (in anthropomorphic form or as an anthropomorphic metaphor)—in the framework of philosophic, speculative hymns like the Puruṣa-Sūkta of R̥gveda concerning the creation of the cosmos from the body parts of a ritually dismembered ‘Ur-Mensch’; the Atharvanic variants of this hymn are employed in magic practices that show that the performance of such a list can also aim at re-creation of the cosmos in a way controlled by the brahmán (or by the magician) for various reasons: of manipulation, defense, destruction—or of healing and purification. 

2.1.1. The Avesta as well displays highly elaborate lists of body-parts ‘from head to toe,’ or rather: ‘from the top of the head till the end of the heel’—like the thirty-fold one within the great purification ritual for persons that have had contact with a dead body, in Vd. 8,40–72: 

The main formula can be extrapolated from the sequence Vd. 8,41ff., cf. Vd. 8,41–42: 

dātarə gaēθanąm astuuaitinąm aṣ̌āum
yezica āpō vaŋuhīš
barəšnūm vaγδanəm pourum paiti.jasaiti
kuua aēšąm
aēša druxš yā nasuš upa.duuąsaiti:
āat̰ mraot̰ ahurō mazdā̊:
paitiša hē hō.nā aṇtarāt̰ naēmāt̰ bruuat̰.biiąm aēšąm
aēša druxš yā nasuš upa.duuąsaiti.
42. dātarə gaēθanąm astuuaitinąm aṣ̌āum
yezica āpō vaŋuhīš
paitiša hē hō.nā aṇtarāt̰ naēmāt̰ bruuat̰.biiąm paiti.jasaiti
kuua aēšąm
aēša druxš yā nasuš upa.duuąsaiti:
āat̰ mraot̰ ahurō mazdā̊:
pasca hē vaγδanəm aēšąm
aēša druxš yā nasuš upa.duuąsaiti.
 

O Creator of the ‘bony’ / material world, thou Aṣ̌a-ful One!
When the good waters
first arrive to the [body part A, here:] top of the head,
whereon of them [= of persons that have had a contact with a corpse]
does the Druj, the Nasu [the mortiferous epidemy witch/demon], move?
So spoke Ahura Mazdā:
‘Upon the [body part B, here:] inner part between their eyebrows
the Druj, the Nasu, moves.’
42. O Creator of the ‘bony’ material world, thou Aṣ̌a-ful One!
When the good waters
arrive up to the [body part B, here:]
inner part between their eyebrows,
on which place of them
does the Druj, the Nasu, move?
So spoke Ahura Mazdā:
‘Upon the [body part C, here:] backside of their head
the Druj, the Nasu, moves.’ 

The list has complex, spiral organization. We can call it ‘triple directionality’: the process develops (1) from the upper body part to the lower one, (2) from front to back side, and (3) from right to left, always recursively, step-by-step: 

– Vd. 8,41: A = top of the head; B = space between the eye-brows
– Vd. 8,42: B = space between the eye-brows; C = backside of the head
– Vd. 8,43: […] C = backside of the head; D = the upper part of the face, etc. […]
– Vd. 8,62: P = right knee; Q = left knee
– Vd. 8,63: Q = left knee; R = right shin
– Vd. 8,64: R = right shin; S = left shin
– Vd. 8,65: S = left shin; T = right ankle
– Vd. 8,66: T = right ankle; U = left ankle
– Vd. 8,67: U = left ankle; V = right fore-foot
– Vd. 8,68: V = right fore-foot/instep; W = left fore-foot/instep
– Vd. 8,69: W = left fore-foot; X = under the sole of the foot
– Vd. 8,70: X = right sole; Y = left sole
– Vd. 8,71: Y = left sole; Z = Ø, i.e.: the Druj Nasu disappears

At the end of the sequence, at the left sole, the witch disappears—the purification is completed, the danger of infection is stopped, the outbreak of epidemy banned and the contamination ritually healed. 

2.1.2. Vedic purification, exorcism, and healing spells are generally arranged in similar form: 

2.1.2.1. Lists with body-part groupings (and often with easily comprehensible classificatory organization) are represented by Vedic hymns like the one against the yákṣma disease in AVŚ. 2,33: 

akṣī́bhyāṃ te nā́sikābhyāṃ
kárṇābhyāṃ chúbukād ádhi |
yákṣmaṃ śīrṣaṇyàṃ mastíṣkāj
jihvā́yā ví vr̥hāmi te ||1||
grīvā́bhyas ta uṣṇíhābhyaḥ
kī́kasābhyo anūkíyā̀t |
yákṣmaṃ doṣaṇyàm áṃsābhyāṃ
bāhúbhyāṃ ví vr̥hāmi te ||2||
hŕ̥dayāt te pári klomnó
hálīkṣṇāt pārśuvā́bhiyām |
yákṣmaṃ mátasnābhyāṃ plīhnó
yaknás te ví vr̥hāmasi ||3||
āntrébhyas te gúdābhiyo
vaniṣṭhór udárād ádhi |
yákṣmaṃ kukṣíbhiyām plāśér
nā́bhiyā ví vr̥hāmi te ||4||
ūrúbhyāṃ te aṣṭhīvádbhyāṃ
pā́rṣṇibhyāṃ prápadābhiyām |
yákṣmaṃ bhasadyàṃ śróṇibhyāṃ
bhā́sadaṃ bháṃsaso ví vr̥hāmi te ||5||
asthíbhyas te majjábhiyaḥ
snā́vabhyo dhamánibhiyaḥ |
yákṣmam pāṇíbhyām aṅgúlibhyo
nakhébhyo ví vr̥hāmi te ||6||
áṅge-aṅge lómni-lomni
yás te párvaṇi-parvaṇi |
yákṣmaṃ tvacasyàṃ te vayáṃ
kaśyápasya vībarhéṇa
víṣvañcaṃ ví vr̥hāmasi ||7||
 

1. From27 your eyes, from [your] nostrils,
from [your] ears, from [your] chin,
from [your] brain, from [your] tongue,
I tear away for you the yákṣma who is in the head.
2. From your neck, from the nape of [your] neck,
from [your] vertebrae, from [your] spine,
from [your] shoulders, from [your] forearms,
I tear away for you the yákṣma who is in the arm.
3. From your heart, from [your] lungs,
from [your] hálīksṇa, from [your] two sides,
from [your] two mátasnas, from [your] spleen,
from [your] liver, we tear away for you the yákṣma.
4. From your bowels, from [your] intestines,
from [your] rectum, from [your] stomach,
from the lateral parts of [your] abdomen, from [your] plāśi,
from [your] navel, I tear away for you the yákṣma.
5. From your thighs, from [your] kneecaps,
from [your] heels, from the front of [your] feet,
from [your] haunches, from [your] bháṃsas,
I tear away for you the yákṣma who is in the backside.
6. From your bones, from [your] marrows,
from [your] tendons, from [your] (blood) vessels,
from [your] hands, from [your] fingers,
from [your] nails, I tear away for you the yákṣma.
7. By means of Kaśyapa’s exorcising spell,
we tear completely away
the yákṣma who is of your skin,
who is in your every limb,
every hair [and] every joint.
 

2.1.2.2. In the magic spell from the RV. 10,163,1ff. all body parts concerned (among them: various internal organs, bones/joints, hair etc. [stanza 1–5]) are first listed individually, in the framework of a voluminous enumeratio. After this, they are summarized by three generic terms (áṅgād-aṅgāl, lómno-lomno, párvaṇi-parvaṇi in stanza 10,163,6ab quoted below), which, in forming simultaneously a distributive geminatio [distributive ‘Āmreḍita’]), subsume the individual body parts under categories: limbs, hair, and joints. At the end, the generic terms themselves are once again recapitulated by the generalisation sárvasmād ātmánas ‘the whole body/trunk.’—RV. 10,163,6:
 

áṅgād-áṅgāl lómno-lomno
jātám párvaṇi-parvaṇi /
yákṣmaṃ sárvasmād ātmánas
tám idáṃ ví vr̥hāmi te //
 

From each limb, from each hair,
the emaciation born/arisen in each joint,
from the whole (body) trunk,
this one I pull off from you now/here.
 

2.1.3. As is well known, we have to do with a common Indo-European topos of healing lists. Parallels in Germanic, related not only typologically but also genealogically to the Indian ones, have been described at the dawn of comparative Indo-European philology by Adalbert Kuhn.28 They occur in the famous Merseburger Zaubersprüche, constantly re-edited and re-assessed ever since the mid-nineteenth century—most recently in the proceedings volume29 of a colloquium in Halle 2000: 

Phol and Wodan were riding to the woods, when Balder’s foal sprained his foot. Bechanted it Sinhtgunt, (and) the Sun her sister; bechanted it Friya, (and) Volla her sister; bechanted it Wodan as best he could. Like bone-sprain, like blood-sprain, like joint-sprain: bone to bone, blood to blood, joint to joint: so be they glued.30
 

Cf. Mantras from the Atharvaveda-Śaunaka 4,12,2–6:
 

yát te riṣṭáṃ yát te dyuttám
ásti péṣṭraṃ ta ātmáni /
dhātā́ tád bhadráyā púnaḥ
sáṃ dadhat páruṣā páruḥ //2//
sáṃ te majjā́ majñā́ bhavatu
sám u te páruṣā páruḥ /
sáṃ te māṃsásya vísrastaṃ
sám ásthiy ápi rohatu //3//
majjā́ majñā́ sáṃ dhīyatāṃ
cármaṇā cárma rohatu /
ásr̥k te ásthi rohatu
māṃsáṃ māṃséna rohatu //4//
lóma lómnā sáṃ kalpayā
tvacā́ sáṃ kalpayā tvácam/
ásr̥k te ásthi rohatu
chinnáṃ sáṃ dhehiy oṣadhe //5//
sá út tiṣṭha préhi
prá drava ráthaḥ sucakráḥ /
supavíḥ sunā́bhiḥ
práti tiṣṭha urdhváḥ //6//
 

2. What of thee is torn, what of thee is broken,
(or what) of thee crushed—
let Dhātar (put) it auspiciously
put that together again, joint with joint.
3. Together be (thy) marrow with marrow,
together (thy) joint with joint;
together thy flesh’s sundered [part],
together let thy bone grow over.
4. Marrow with marrow together be set;
skin with skin let grow;
thy blood, bone let grow,
flesh with flesh let grow.
5. Hair with hair fit (thou) together;
with hide together fit hide;
thy bone with bone let grow;
set the severed together, O herb.
6. So stand up, go forth, run forth,
(as) a chariot well-wheeled,
well-tired, well-naved.
Stand firm upright!31
 

Cf. also the additional interpretations of the hymn by (Eichner and Nedoma 2000–2001b). — A somewhat divergent, important parallel appears in the new fragments of the Paippalāda—AVP. 4,15,1–4. It has been edited by (Bhattacharya 1997) and re-assessed and commented upon by Griffiths and Lubotsky32 and is, by now, the best preserved parallel to the Germanic formula:
 

saṃ majjā majjñā bhavatu
sam u te paruṣā paruḥ |
saṃ te rāṣṭrasya visrastaṃ
saṃ snāva sam u parva te ||1||
majjā majjñā saṃ dhīyatām
asthnāsthiy *api rohatu |
snāva te saṃ dadhmaḥ snāvnā
carmaṇā carma rohatu ||2||
loma lomnā saṃ dhīyatāṃ
tvacā saṃ kalpayā tvacam |
asr̥k te asnā rohatu
māṃsaṃ māṃsena rohatu ||3||
rohiṇī saṃrohiṇiy
*asthnaḥ śīrṇasya rohiṇī |
rohiṇyām ahni jātāsi
rohiṇiy asiy oṣadhe ||4||
 

1. Let marrow come together with marrow,
and your joint together with joint,
together what of your flesh has fallen apart,
together sinew and together your bone.
2. Let marrow be put together with marrow,
let bone grow over [together] with bone.
We put together your sinew with sinew,
let skin grow with skin.
3. Let hair be put together with hair.
[Rohinī-plant (‘Grower’)], fit together skin with skin.
Let your blood grow with blood;
let flesh grow with flesh.
4. Grower [are you], healer,
grower of the broken bone.
You are born on the Rohinī day,
you are grower, o plant.
 

2.2. Other forms of body part lists include depictions of clothing, regalia and armaments of the deity. I analyzed such lists in a book published 2007 and will avoid repeating them here. For illustration, I shall cite only the instance of Yt. 15,57, with the depiction of Vaiiu starting from his head-decoration on (the figure being a repetition figure, symplokē, with a complex anaphora: A B C D / A B E D / A B F D / A B G D …), in which the context on both sides remains constant, the mid-term of the construction containing the only variable element with reference to clothing and armament:
 

vaēm zaraniiō.xaoδəm yazamaide
vaēm zaraniiō.pusəm yazamaide
vaēm zaraniiō.minəm yazamaide
vaēm zaraniiō.vāṣ̌əm yazamaide
vaēm zaraniiō.caxrəm yazamaide
vaēm zaraniiō.zaēm yazamaide
vaēm zaraniiō.vastrəm yazamaide
 

We worship Vaiiu, the one with the golden head decoration,
We worship Vaiiu, the one with the golden diadem,
We worship Vaiiu, the one with the golden necklace,
We worship Vaiiu, the one with the golden chariot,
We worship Vaiiu, the one with the golden wheel,
We worship Vaiiu, the one with the golden weapon,
We worship Vaiiu, the one with the golden robe/‘vestments’.
 

2.3. Body as list: Under this rubric, we observe the highly interesting metaphoric type characterized, first, by the ritual pronouncement of cursing spells on body parts of a figurine (a voodoo-like doll or [schematic] statue). 

2.3.1. I comment on lists in formulae of rites of ritual binding, burying and piercing of figurines in Vedic and beyond in (Sadovski 2012). Here I present only two illustrative examples of body part enumerations. The first one concerns enumerative binding spells in maledictions: 

2.3.1.1. In Indo-Iranian tradition, the basic mantra structure is represented by binding formulae like the one of AVŚ. 7,73[70],4–5: ‘I [am] bind[ing] X [’s body (parts a, b, c etc.)]’:
 

ápāñcau ta ubháu bāhū́
ápi nahyāmiy āsíyàm |
agnér devásya manyúnā
téna te ’vadhiṣaṃ havíḥ ||4||
ápi nahyāmi te bāhū́
ápi nahyāmiy āsíyàm |
agnér ghorásya manyúnā
téna te ’vadhiṣaṃ havíḥ ||5||
 

Turned back/behind are your two arms.
I bind (your) mouth.
With the wrath of god Agni
I destroyed your oblation.
I bind your arms,
I bind (your) mouth.
With the wrath of terrible Agni
I destroyed your oblation.
 

2.3.1.2. Parallels from other (Indo-European) traditions come from Greek magic spells, where we find the same basic structure—and the same form of arranging the spells in increasing order of the terms (again, ‘Behaghel’s law’)—e.g. on a cursing plate from Attica, beginning of the 4th century BCE:
 

Side A: (1) I bind down Theagenes, his tongue and his soul and the words he uses;
(2) I also bind down the hands and feet of Pyrrhias, the cook, his tongue, his soul, his words; […]
(8) I also bind down the tongue of Seuthes, his soul, and the words he uses, just like his feet, his hands, his eyes, and his mouth;
(9) I also bind down the tongue of Lamprias, his soul, and the words he uses, just like his feet, his hands, his eyes, and his mouth.
 

Side B: All these I bind down, I make them disappear, 1 bury them, I nail them down (Graf 1997, 122).
 

12.1 Left side: Lead figurine from Athens, first published in Mélusine 9, 1898–1899, 104, fig. 2. Right side: Decapitated lead figurine from Athens (cf. Faraone 1991, fig. 6–7, 2001), first publ. in Philologus 61, 1902, 37. 

On evidence for such practices in Indo-Iranian see (Sadovski 2012, 334ff.); since the RV Khilas and esp. in the Kauśika-Sūtra and texts of the (Black) YV, we have scattered evidence for such rites of burying figurines or other objects (kr̥tyā́-) and treating (binding, piercing, shooting at) such objects systematically, limb by limb, to damn a person (just like in Graeco-Egyptian magic rites described by Graf 1997, 134ff.). There is a huge literature about Greek and Graeco-Egyptian, but also earlier Egyptian and ancient Mesopotamian traditions of binding and burying spells, apparently without any reference to Indo-Iranian parallels. We even possess little sculptural representations, like the following instances: 

2.3.2. Verba concepta—mantras of blessing or curse—can exercise their effect not only when being recited: a further projection of their performative force is achieved by writing sacred syllables of such spells on body parts (verbally and/or on a figurine/statue/doll). 

Such practices do not concern exclusively the sphere of ‘black magic’; there is also the positive version of the ‘body as list’ type: This is the case of the special genre of benedictions written on a statue or picture of the body of a divine being. A literally eloquent example is contained in the pictures of the Hindu deity Hanuman with Devanāgarī mantras of benediction written on his limbs, published by Fritz Staal in (Alper 1989, 55). 

3.Glotto-logia’: Among what I subsume under ‘glotto-logical lists,’ there are elaborated sequences of language items and metalinguistic analogies. It is about ‘linguistic mannerisms’ on various levels of poetical language—plays with objective language items, ana-logiae, meta-linguistic issues and idiolectal, nonce formations used by the poets on a range scale between glosso-lalein33 and ‘glosso-logein.’ 

3.1. Syntaxis: To start with higher levels of rhetoric and stylistics, we often meet variations of inflexional elements, esp. in the esoteric declension of a divine epithet or name: 

3.1.1. In case of variation of nominal case-forms with different case desinences, classical rhetoric theory speaks of a polyptoton. On this figure of speech see (Klein 2000, 133ff.) and (Sadovski 2006, 529f., esp. § 2.1.1.2) in which cf. examples like TS 4,5,1–2, with six different forms of the divine epithet śivá- (śivátamā, śivám, śivā́, śivā́, śivā́ṃ, śivena) and RV. 4,7,11ab, with three different forms within only one hemistich (tr̥ṣú, tr̥ṣúṇā, tr̥ṣúm): 

• TS 4,5,1–2:
yā́ ta íṣuḥ śivátamā
śivám babhū́va te dhánuḥ /
śivā́ śaravyā̀ yā́ táva
táyā no rudra mr̥ḍaya // (b)
yā́ te rudra śivā́ tanū́r
ághorā́pāpakāśinī / // (c) […]
śivā́ṃ giritra tā́ṃ kuru […] (d)
śivena vácasā tuvā
gíriśā́chā vadāmasi / […] // (e)
 

That arrow of thine which (is) the most gracious/propitious,
what is thy propitious bow,
what (is) thy propitious arrow(-missile),
with this (one), Rudra, be thou mild/merciful to us. […]
That body of thine, Rudra, which is propitious,
not formidable, not of bad/evil look […]
make it, o mountain-guardian, (a) propitious (one) […]
With a propitiatory speech
we speak to you, (o) mountain-dweller […].
 

• RV. 4,7,11ab:
tr̥ṣú yád ánnā tr̥ṣúṇā vavákṣa
tr̥ṣúṃ dūtáṃ kr̥ṇute yahvó agníḥ /
 

Wenn er gierig die Speisen (verzehrend) mit der gierigen (Flamme) wächst, so macht der jüngste Agni den gierigen (Wind) zu seinem Boten (Geldner 1951–1957, 1, ad loc.). 

Eight variants of four different case-forms of the name of the Fire-god agní- appear at the ‘locus classicus’ RV. 1,1a-5a.6b-7a.9b,34 with identical stem-vowel / case-ending complexes in different morphonological sandhi-forms each—contracted; elided; with or without accent; with -ḥ vs. -r etc. 

3.1.2. In the specific case which I will call “pam-ptoton,” we discover a remarkable later mantra listing a complete paradigm of all eight (= 7+1) case forms of Rāma’s name, in order of a nominal paradigm as taught by Pāṇini (+Voc.!): 

Rām.-Mahātmyam 1,1 (cf. Deeg 1995, 59; Liebich 1919, 14f.): Singular
śrīrāmаḥ śaraṇaṃ samastajagatāṃ, Nom. The venerable Rāma [Sing. Nom.] is the refuge of all beings.
rāmaṃ vinā kā gatī, Acc. Which road/way [is] without Rāma?
rāmeṇa pratihanyate kalimalaṃ, Instr. By Rāma, the stain of the Kali epoch is averted.
rāmāya kāryaṃ namaḥ; Dat. It is to Rāma veneration has to be done/offered.
rāmāt trasyati kālabhīmabhujago, Abl. In front of Rāma, the snake Kālabhīma trembles.
rāmasya sarvaṃ vaśe, Gen. In Rāma’s power is “(the) all” / entire (universe).
rāme bhaktir akhaṇḍitā bhavatu – Loc. Let the devotion/dedication to Rāma be uninterrupted,
me rāma tvam evāśrayaḥ – Voc. – to me, o Rāma, be you support!

3.2. Morpho-logia: On this level, we find, for example, lists of concepts in all ‘genderforms, like the ones in masculine/feminine/neuter, pumaṁs- – strī- – na(strī)puṁsaka-, in the Paippalāda-Saṃhitā: 

AVP. 6,8: Gender
sahasva yātudhānān Masc. Suppress the sorcerers,
sahasva yātudhāniyaḥ | Fem. suppress the sorceresses,
sahasva sarvā rakṣāṃsi Neut. suppress all demons:
sahamānāsiy oṣadhe || Generalization you are suppressing, ο Plant!

3.3. And for what regards the ‘Phono-logia magica’ in mantras, we see harmonic sequences of phonological elements distributed in proportional and (numerically) rational, quantifiable ways, in sound ‘symmetries.’35 Peter Raster discovered such ‘symmetries’ of sound classes for Rigveda, where groups of consonant and vowel phonemes form integral multiples of the lucky number Eight; see figures, e.g. in RV 1,1: 

Consonants in the first hymn of the RV exhibit statistically significant occurrence frequencies: they seem to be distributed in four classes, according to the features ‘voiced’ vs. ‘voiceless’ and ‘aspirated’ vs. ‘unaspirated,’ in the following way: 

1 voiceless unaspirated consonants k (4), c (3), t (32), p (8), ś (6), (7), s (20)
2 voiceless aspirated consonants ch (1), (7)
3 voiced unaspirated consonants g (13), (2), j (4), ñ (2), (2), (1), d (17), n (21), m (22), y (16), r (25), v (35)
4 voiced aspirated consonants dh (5), bh (7), h (4)

The occurrence frequencies of all the four classes are integral multiples of 8: 

Relation between the frequencies of the voiced and voiceless consonants: 176: 88 = 2 : 1. 

Relation between the frequencies of the aspirated and unaspirated consonants: 24 : 240 = 1 : 10. 

voiced voiceless total sum [1] voiceless unaspirated consonants 80 = 10 x 8
aspirated 16 8 24 [2] voiceless aspirated consonants 8 = 1 x 8
unaspirated 160 80 240 [3] voiced unaspirated consonants 160 = 20 x 8
total sum 176 88 264 [4] voiced aspirated consonants 16 = 2 x 8

Similar proportions can be established for vowels, too, according to four specific classes. Also here, the occurrence frequencies of all the four classes are integral multiples of 8. 

3.4. Semasio-logia vs. onomasio-logia: 

3.4.1. On poetic uses of paronomasia, Vedic / Avestan parallels have been collected by (Gonda 1959, 232ff.; Klein 2000) and (Klein 2006) (appellatives), and (Sadovski 2007) (epithets / nomina propria), both last studies being presented for the first time in: (Pinault and Petit 2006), before being then included in larger monographs of their authors.—Here only one key example, analysed in (Sadovski 2007, 533) from the perspective of paronomasia, taken now in its relevance with regard to forms of phonologically marked lists: 

Specific item(s) remain[s] constant; general context varies and form (complex) list(s)—RV. 5,40,1c-4b, with soma-cult attributes, epicleseis and epithets of Indra: 

vŕ̥ṣann indra vŕ̥ṣabhir vr̥trahantama //1//
vŕ̥ṣā grā́vā vŕ̥ṣā mádo
vŕ̥ṣā sómo ayáṃ sutáḥ /
vŕ̥ṣann indra vŕ̥ṣabhir vr̥trahantama//2//
vŕ̥ṣā tvā vŕ̥ṣaṇaṃ huve
vájriñ citrā́bhir ūtíbhiḥ /
vŕ̥ṣann indra vŕ̥ṣabhir vr̥trahantama //3//
r̥jīṣī́ vajrī́ vr̥ṣabhás turāṣā́ṭ
chuṣmī́ rā́jā vr̥trahā́ somapā́vā /
 

[…] (o) bull Indra, with the bulls, you (great)est Vr̥tra-killer!
2. Bull(-like) is the pressing-stone, bull(-like) the intoxication,
bull(-like) this Soma, (when) pressed-out,
(o) bull Indra, with the bulls, you (great)est Vr̥tra-killer!
3. (As a) bull, I (am) call(ing) you, the bull,
o Vajra-bearer, with (your) wonderful helps/favors,
(o) bull Indra, with the bulls, you (great)est Vr̥tra-killer!
4. Marc-drinking, vajra-bearing, a bull, overcoming the powerful,
a courageous king, a Vr̥tra-killer and soma-drinker […]!
 

3.4.2. Etymo-logia magica: Beyond the semasio-logical word-plays in 3.4.1, I would like to underline two types of esoteric lists: The first are etymo-logical or pseudo-etymological associations in mantras per analogiam. The magic (creative or destructive) of ‘etymological’ (= etymologically right or wrong!) associations include the following aspects: 

3.4.2.1. Explicative ‘etymologisation’ of epithets, for exegetic purposes: Evidence of the relation between so-called ‘semantic etymologies’ and magic in the Veda has been investigated e.g. by (Oldenberg 1919, 221ff.; Deeg 1995, 58ff., 75ff.; Bronkhorst 2001, 147ff.). See further following two instances of esoterical plays with divine epithets like the name of Viṣṇu or the appellative for ‘yoke,’ dhū́r-, in invocations—from AVP 6,9,2ab [= TB 2,4,7,1(2)ab]:
 

viṣuvān viṣṇo bhava
tuvaṃ yo nr̥patir mama

O Viṣṇu, be the culminating point (viṣuvánt-),
thou who art my lord. (cf. ed. Griffiths)
 

or from TS. 1,1,4,1de:
 

dhū́r asi; dhū́rva táṃ yò ’asmā́n dhū́rvati
táṃ dhūrva yáṃ vayáṃ dhū́rvāmas

Thou art the yoke. Injure him who injures us,
injure him whom we injure.36
 

as well as in the typical Indo-Iranian genre of what I call ‘auto-doxological hymns’ (“self-praises” of a deity, cf. the Avestan Yašts 1 and 15 with the Vedic ātmastutis, like e.g. in RV. 10,48 and 10,49) such as the one of Vaiiu speaking of himself in Yt. 15,43 of the Avesta37:
 

vanō.vīspā̊ nąma ahmi […] A-B C D
auuat̰ vanō.vīspā̊ nąma ahmi E A-B C D
yat̰ uua dąma vanāmi F G A'
vohuuaršte nąma ahmi […] H-I C D
auuat̰ vohuuaršte nąma ahmi E H-I C D
yat̰ vohū vərəziiāmi F H I

I am ‘All-Vanquisher’ by name,
Therefore I am ‘All-Vanquisher’ by name
because I vanquish both creations,
I am ‘Good-Doer / Bene-factor’ by name,
Therefore I am ‘Good-Doer / Bene-factor’ by name
because I do good / bene-fit.
 

3.4.2.2. Not only verba sacra stand for res sacrae—but also res sacrae occur because of verba sacra: This phenomenon concerns the ‘inverse’ influence of word and sound structures on ritual actions by association chains. We can cite e.g. the method of choosing ritual plants (only) on the basis of their names—like the ones of the exemplary list of AVŚ. 8,8,3 (cf. Bloomfield 1897, 117f., 583f.):
 

amū́n aśvattha níḥ śr̥ṇīhi
khā́dāmū́n khadirājirám |
tājádbháṅga iva bhajantāṃ
hántuv enān vádhako vadháiḥ ||3||
 

Tear as under those (enemies), o Aśvattha (ficus religiosa)!
devour (khāda) them, o Khadira (acacia catechu)!
Like the Tājadbhaṅga (ricinus communis) they shall be broken (bhaj)!
May the vadhaka-(tree) kill them with (its) weapons (vadha-).
 

3.4.3. Polysemics can be involved as a device in ritul poetry especially in the case of mystical associations of divergent meanings of a sound complex—cf. the associative play with polysemantic words like suvarṇa—are to be found throughout Indian poetical tradition, also in post-Vedic times, like in the beautiful ‘manneristic’ example of Rāmāyana 5,32,45:
 

suvarṇasya suvarṇasya
suvarṇasya ca bhāvini /
rāmeṇa prahitaṃ devi
suvarṇasyāṅgurīyakam
 

Rāma sends you, fair princess, this ring,
made of gold [suvarṇa-], of beautiful colour [suvarṇa-]
and well-engraved [suvarṇa-] letters and weighing a suvarṇa.38
 

Highlights of other types of catalogues and enumerations (as given above in the list in § 0.3., Table A) are discussed in two further studies to appear in the Proceedings of the Meetings of the Multilingualism Research Group. For what concerns the given matrix, a combined comparative and typological approach to the literary gender of lists and catalogues of Veda and Avesta indeed turns out to be heuristically fruitful—and to enrich our knowledge about the ways of reflection on the structures of the Universe and of the human microcosm in Indo-Iranian ritual poetry. 

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Footnotes

[1]

For a characterization of lists of divine names as a (cross-cultural) form of religious poetry, see (Sadovski 2007, esp. 38–47; Panaino 2002, 15–24, 107ff.).

[2]

See (Soden 1936, 555ff.); for the analysis of the (philological and extra-philological) background of his theses, see (Veldhuis 1997, 6f., 137–139); on the assessment of Mesopotamian catalogues from an epistemological perspective, cf. also (Oppenheim 1977, 248; Oppenheim 1978, 634ff.; Larsen 1987, esp. 210, 218).

[3]

The connection between representation of knowledge in forms of catalogues and mnemonical/pedagogical practice in ancient Mesopotamia has been investigated by Niek Veldhuis in a series of articles (e.g. Veldhuis 1999; 2006a; 2006b) and a special monograph (idem 1997; cf. also Veldhuis 2004); on the implications of this text genre for hermeneutics and historiography of knowledge see (Kühlmann 1973) and recently (Selz 2007, 2011).

[4]

On lists in Ancient Greek and Graeco-Egyptian magic see Richard Gordon’s contributions (Gordon 2000, 250–263), on archaic and classical lists, as well as ibid. (263–275), on cross-culturally influenced Hellenistic lists; cf. also (Gordon 2002); for a metanalytical point of view on Ancient Indian lists in grammar and ritual and their Buddhist correspondents in the plurilingual conditions of Indian, Central Asia and Chinese Turkestan see (Braarvig et.al. forthcoming).

[5]

(Goody 1977, esp. 74–111), modified in (Goody 1986; 1987) as well as, generally, (Gordon 2000, 244f., 250), and (Braarvig 2000, with lit.), on the heuristic value of Goody’s ‘Grand Dichotomy’ concept.

[6]

See recently (Eco 2009). One has to recall that this semiotic monograph on lists was intent to accompany—but, in a certain sense, has itself been accompanied by—a concomitant exposition of classical and modern pictures representing ‘catalogues’ of various spheres of life—styled by the Italian scholar at the Musée du Louvre as a kind of super-list which, moreover, went hand in hand with its own analytical meta-list in a kind of transcendental, ultra-Goedelian (or proto-Münchhausen-ian?) attempt of a system to find a meta-language about itself.

[7]

See (Spufford 1989). From the flood of works on catalogues in classical works of oral poetry like the ones by Homer and Hesiod, I shall quote here only (Deichgräber 1965) and (West 1985), each one emblematic for the research accents of its period, characterized by high-level intrinsic comparison and giving certain extrinsic, comparative perspectives—but almost completely lacking contrastive interest in typological parallels in non-‘Classical’ (in the [Indo-]Euro-centric sense of this term) languages and literatures.

[8]

Multilingualism, Linguae Francae, and the Global History of Religious and Scientific Concepts. An international conference, Norwegian Institute at Athens, April 2–5, 2009, convenors: Jens E. Braarvig and Malcolm Hyman.

[9]

Classification as a Hermeneutic Tool. A Workshop at the Oriental Institute, Vienna University, November 2, 2009, convenor: Gebhard Selz. Cf. http://www.univie.ac.at/orges/hp/wp-content/uploads/2009/09/Classification_plakat.pdf (accessed June 10, 2014). See also (Selz forthcoming).

[10]

Multilingual Lists, Catalogues, and Classification Systems. A workshop within the Interdisciplinary Conference Multilingualism in Central Asia, Near and Middle East from Antiquity to Early Modern Times, organized by the Institute of Iranian Studies and the International Relations Department of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna, March 1–3, 2010, convenors: Bernhard Plunger, Velizar Sadovski, Florian Schwarz. Cf. http://www.oeaw.ac.at/iran/german/konferenz_multilingualism.html (accessed June 10, 2014).

[11]

Lists, Catalogues, and Classification Systems from Comparative and Historical Point of View. A workshop of the Multilingualism Research Group, held in the framework of the Interdisciplinary Conference Multilingualism and History of Knowledge in Asia from Antiquity till Early Modern Times, Vienna, November 3–5, 2011, organized by the Institute of Iranian Studies and the International Relations Department of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna, November 3–5, 2011; convenors like in Fn. 10.

[12]

Crossing Boundaries: Multilingualism, Lingua Franca and Lingua Sacra, TOPOI conference, Berlin, November 8–10, 2010, convenor: Markham J. Geller. Cf. http://www.topoi.org/event/crossing-boundaries-multilingualism-lingua-franca-and-lingua-sacra/ (accessed June 10, 2014).

[13]

Problems of lists in magical and medical texts have been discussed in a series of papers on the TOPOI Conference Knowledge to Die For: Transmission of Prohibited and Esoteric Knowledge through Space and Time, Berlin, May 2–4, 2011, convenor: Florentina Badalanova Geller. Cf. http://www.topoi.org/event/knowledge-to-die-for-transmission-of-prohibited-and-esoteric-knowledge- http://through-space-and-time/ (accessed June 10, 2014); in preparation is a joint publication of Geller, Badalanova Geller, and Sadovski on the materials discussed in the framework of the two Berlin meetings at the Max-Planck-Institute for the History of Science.

[14]

Organization of knowledge in Asian cultures: Lists, catalogues and classification systems between orality and scriptuality. Panel in the framework of the 31st German Congress of Oriental Studies, Marburg, September 20–24, 2010, convenors: Jens E. Braarvig, Markham J. Geller and Velizar Sadovski. Cf. http://https://archive.today/o/QKkC6/http://www.dot2010.de/index.php?ID_seite=5.

[15]

Multilingualism and Social Experience in Pre-Modern Societies of Ancient Eurasia: Socio-Economic, Linguistic, and Religious Aspects. Panel in the framework of the 32nd German Congress of Oriental Studies, Münster, September 23–27, 2013, convenors: Velizar Sadovski and Gebhard J. Selz. Cf. http://www.dot2013.de/en/programm/abstracts/panel http://-multilingualism-and-social-experience-in-pre-modern-societies-of-ancient-eurasia-socio-economic http://-linguistic-and-religious-aspects/, accessed June 10, 2014.

[16]

Abbreviations of texts used: (a) Vedic: RV = R̥gveda-Saṃhitā. – AVŚ = Atharvaveda-Saṃhitā (Śaunaka branch); AVP = Atharvaveda-Saṃhitā, Paippalāda branch; Kauś = Kauśika-Sūtra. – YV(S/B) = Yajurveda(-Saṃhitā/-Brāhmaṇa), esp.: Black YV: TS = Taittirīya-Saṃhitā. TB = Taittirīya-Brāhmaṇa. BaudhŚS = Baudhāyana-Śrauta-Sūtra. ĀpŚS = Āpastamba-Śrauta-Sūtra. White YV: Vājasaneyi-Saṃhitā; ŚB = Śatapatha-Brāhmaṇa. (b) Avestan: text strata – GAv. = Gāthic Avestan. YAv = ‘Young(er)’ Avestan; text corpora – Y. = Yasna; Yt. = Yašt; Vd. = Vīdēvdād.

[17]

For relevant texts edited and/or examined so far in the framework of this project, cf. e.g. (Witzel 1985 (AVP and AVŚ); Witzel 1997; Zehnder 1993 (AVP, Kāṇḍa 1); Zehnder 1999 (Kāṇḍa 2); Lubotsky 2002 (Kāṇḍa 5); Griffiths 2002, 2003, 2004 (AVP and Kauś.), 2007, 2009 (Kāṇḍa 6 and 7), Lopez 2010 (Kāṇḍa 13 and 14), and Lelli 2009 (Kāṇḍa 15)).

[18]

Edited by S. Bahulkar, Jan Houben, Michael Witzel and Julieta Rotaru, to appear 2015.

[19]

Included in the materials collected in the volume (Braarvig et.al. forthcoming).

[20]

Cf. (Panaino 2002; Schmitt 2003; Sadovski 2007), e.g. on the Indian ‘name-praising hymns,’ nāma-stotras.

[21]

I refer to the analysis of the formation of the compounds and the ‘natural’ character of the connections between their elements (like in the case of ‘rice-and-barley’) in (Sadovski 2002, 358–361, with notes 387–389).

[22]

For more cosmological lists, mainly in the YV(Br), and their structures, see the choice of texts in (Klaus 1986).

[23]

Noteworthy, the same formulaic sequences of domestic animals occur in the purification/lustration formula of TB. cited below, § 1.3.

[24]

Cf. (Whitney and Lanman 1905, vol. 2, 579).

[25]

Cf. (Panagl 1999, 443, with lit., 445, n. 20).

[26]

On these as well as on the conclusive formulae of the Yašts (in their relationship with the Nyayišn corpus) cf. (Darmesteter 1892, 331–334; Lommel 1927, 8ff.) and most recently (Panaino forthcoming).

[27]

Cf. (Zysk 1998, 15f.).

[28]

Cf. (Kuhn 1864, 49ff.).

[29]

(Eichner and Nedoma 2000–2001b), esp. in the essay (Eichner and Nedoma 2000–2001a). Cf. also the divergent interpretative proposals by Wolfgang Beck in Part 2 of the same volume.

[30]

(West 2007, 336); for modifications cf. the comm. by (Eichner and Nedoma 2000–2001b, ad loc.).

[31]

Cf. (Whitney and Lanman 1905, vol.1, 167; Watkins 1995, 522f.; West 2007, 336f.).

[32]

(Griffiths and Lubotsky 2000–2001), see also p. 209 with a photograph of the ms. Ku 1, fol. 78r.

[33]

On the notion of glosso-lalía see (Güntert 1921, 23–54, esp. 30f.) and cf. (Sadovski 2012) on concepts of the sphere of laletics and their Indo-Iranian dimensions (japa-; vipra- language etc.).

[34]

See (Sadovski 2006, 530).

[35]

See (Raster 1992, 22).

[36]

See (Keith 1914, 1, 4; Deeg 1995, 65).

[37]

Details in (Sadovski 2006, 534f.).

[38]

Cf. (Gonda 1959, 332), after H. R. Diwekar.

 

Melammu

Table of Contents

Preface: The Globalization of Knowledge in the Ancient
Near East

J. Renn

Introduction to Melammu: Early Globalization
M. J. Geller

1 Globalization of Religion:
Jewish Cosmology in its Ancient Near Eastern Context

Simo Parpola

2 Global Monotheism:
The Contribution of the Israelite Prophets

Baruch A. Levine

3 Globalization and Imperialism:
Political and Ideological Reactions to the Assyrian Presence in Syria (IXth–VIIIth Century BCE)

Maria Grazia Masetti-Rouault

4 The Tale of the Wild Man and the Courtesan in India
and Mesopotamia: The Seductions of Ṛśyaśṛnga in the
Mahābhārata and Enkidu in the Epic of Gilgamesh

Tzvi Abusch, Emily West

5 Globalization in Literature:
Re-Examining the Gilgameš Affair

Cynthia Jean

6 Gilgamesh’s Plant of Rejuvenation and Qāṭīne’s Sīsīsāmbur
Nineb Lamassu

7 Some Observations about “Foreigners” in Babylonia
during the VI Century BCE

Kabalan Moukarzel

8 The Religious Reform of Nabonidus: A Sceptical View
Kabalan Moukarzel

9 New Light on George Smith’s Purchase of the
Egibi Archive in 1876 from the Nachlass Mathewson

Strahil V. Panayotov, Cornelia Wunsch

10 Phrygian Bronzes in the Greek World:
Globalization through Cult?

Maya Vassileva

11 Power and Ritual in the Achaemenian Royalty
Antonio Panaino

12 Religious Ontology and Taxonomic Structures in Indo-Iranian Oral Poetry
Velizar Sadovski

13 Elements of “Globalization” in Ancient Iranian Numismatics
Andrea Gariboldi

14 The Spread of the Cuneiform Culture to the Urartian North (IX–VII Century BCE)
Mirjo Salvini

15 India and World Trade: From the Beginnings to the
Hellenistic Age

Klaus Karttunen

16 Ancient Near Eastern Polities and the Greek Polis: Secondary States, Structural Similarities and the Problem of Diffusion
Kristoffer Momrak

17 Seeing Otherwise: On the Rules of Comparison in
Historical Humanities

Amar Annus

Abbreviations


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