Dating the Veda: Using the Horse and Planets

Vidhyanath Rao rao.3 at OSU.EDU
Thu Jan 20 15:29:40 EST 2000


To help keep me under the posting limits, I am combining replies to several
messages and not quoting the originals.

First of all, I did not attempt to give the impression that I consider
as'va to denote the Equus family (smilies needed here?) and I don't
understand how I did. My question was about the distinction between the ass
and the heminoe (or onager) which are two dsitinct species (donkey =
domesticated ass) but not always kept separate in writing or dictionaries.

I will also appreciate pointers to literature on the word parasvant. I
don't have access to EWA nor ready access to KEWA. Surya Kanta's dictionary
gives the meaning as rhinoceros which seems to go back to B"uhler, without
any reference to PW's suggestion of ``wild ass'' (thus the Khur). How to
decide?

Re: Witzel's question about the use of the hemione in ANE: I was
distinguishing between `tame' and `domesticated'. In fact failure to
domesticate the hemione is the reason usually given for why it was so
quickly abandoned when the domestic horse arrived. But apparently Indians
continued to breed horse-Khur hybrids (by driving mares into the forest).
J. Clutton-Brock cites some 18-19th c. travelogues to this effect.
May be relevant to Herodotus.



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