Tr: [Paired Horse and PIE breakup]

SVADCHII Jean-Claude svadchi at AGF.FR
Fri Nov 6 08:19:54 UTC 1998

> Date:    Wed, 4 Nov 1998 06:27:46 PST
> From:    "S.Kalyanaraman" < kalyan99 at NETSCAPE.NET
<mailto:kalyan99 at NETSCAPE.NET> >
> Subject: Re: [Paired Horse and PIE breakup]
> > Both in Indian asvamedha and Roman ritual, the right side horse
> > of paired draught was sacrificed... =
> Are there any textual bases for this statement? =

You will find it for Rome in Plutarch, Roman Questions, 97. The parallel
between the Equos October at Rome and the azvamedha has been studied by
Georges Dumezil, lastly in his Archaic Roman Religion. You will find
there other parallel rites : the suovetaurilia and the sautraamaNi, a
sacrifice intended to give strength to Indra. The Matronalia rites,
already obscure to the Romans, could be explained using Vedic parallels.
If we turn to Dumezil’s explanations of the mythical history of Rome, I
think the best ones concern Numa Pompilius, heir of the indoeuropean
stuff which gave birth in India to the Vedic Mitra, and Camillus, Mater
Matuta’ protege, heir of indoeuropean stuff which gave birth to Surya’s
myths in relation with the night, his mother, and USas, his adoptive
mother (=Mater Matuta)(cf the history of KarNa). Again the battle of the
Horatii against the
Curiatii = the third one (Trita) against the Triple One (or the
Tricephal). Romulus’ explanation is much more complex, since it has a
better parallel with the Germanic god Njordhr. Born a Vane, he dedicated
himself to Odhinn, as is illustrated by Saxo Grammaticus’ hero Hadingus,
a reelaboration of Njordhr by Saxo (Dumezil : From myth to fiction; the
saga of Hadingus). Similarly, Romulus, at first a shepherd and a twin
(third indo-european function = abundance, wealth, fecundity, health,
pleasure, multiplicity) takes the part of the creator and becomes at the
end of his reign quite similar to Varuna. But his deification in
Quirinus, a third-function god, shows clearly he was not by essence
Varuna’s cousin. 

Rome and India have then a notable common heritage. But we find other
parallels with India after 1000 AD in the " cycle des Narbonnais ", a
legend probably vehicled into France by the Wisigoths. For example, we
discover the parallel of Rudra as a general of a ghostly army. See "
Archeologie de l’Epopee Medievale " by Joel H. Grisward (Paris 1981), a
most serious book.

How could the heirs of the Indo-Europeans keep alive during so many
thousands of years those military rites and legends without practising
war ? Did they truly expand several miles a generation ? I doubt it.
Could the " cycle des Narbonnais " be a heritage 4, 5 or 6 000 years old
? Maybe it could be better explained if the ancestors of the Germans (the
same for the Romans) did not lose contact from the ancestors of the
Indo-Iranians too far in the past.

Jean-Claude Svadchii

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