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Early Indo-European Texts


Scott L. Harvey and Jonathan Slocum

This page contains a text in Avestan with a modern English translation. This particular text and its translation are extracted from a lesson in the Early Indo-European Online series, where one may find detailed information about this text (see the Table of Contents page for Old Iranian Online in EIEOL), and general information about the Avestan language and its speakers' culture.

Old Avestan: Yasna 29 (continued)

6 at vaocat ahur       mazd vdv vafsh vynay
nit av ah vist       nad ratush asht-ct hac
at z thw fshuyanta-c       vstryi-c thwresht tatash

7 tm ztish ahur       mthrem tashat ash hazaosh
mazd gavi xshvdem-c       hv urushaiby spent ssnay
kast voh manangh       y dyt ev maretaiby

8 am mi id vist       y n av ssn gshat
Zarathushtr Spitm       hv n mazd vasht ashi-c
carekerethr srvayengh       hyat hi hudemm dyi vaxedhrahy

9 at-c gush urv raost       y anashem xshanmn rdem
vcim neresh asrahy       ym vasem sh-xshathrm
kad yav hv anghat       y hi dadt zastavat av

10 yzhm aiby ahur       aog dt ash xshathrem-c
avat voh manangh       y husheitsh rmm-c dt
azm-ct ahy mazd       thwm mngh paourvm vadem

11 kud ashem vohu-c       man xshathrem-c at m mash
yzhm mazd frxshnen       mazi magi- pait-znat
ahur n n avar       hm-rtish yshmvatm


6   So the Wise Lord, the Knowing One, speaks the solemn words [inspired] by [his] insight:
    "There is no lord found by even one [among us], nor a paragon in accordance with any Truth.
    Alas, the Fashioner has fashioned you for the benefit of the cattle breeder and the herdsman.
7   "The Lord [who is] allied with Truth fashioned the magic formula
          for [procuring] butter and milk for the cow.1
    This Wise (One) is beneficent towards the emaciated in accordance with the teaching.
    Who is there for you who might set these [things] down for mortals by Good Mind?"
8   [Good Mind?: There is] this [one] found here for me who alone hears our [holy] teachings --
    Zarathustra Spitama: he wishes to recite [praises] for us and for Truth, O Wise One,
    If I shall give to him sweetness of voice."
9   And so the soul of the cow laments: "I who am to accept a powerless provider,
    A weak man's voice which I wish [to be] strong --
    When during my lifetime will he emerge, [the one] who lends to him a helping hand?"
10   [Zarathustra:] "O Lord, may you give strength to them2 through Truth,
    And that power, [which comes] through Good Mind, by which one may receive
          comfort and peace.
    For I myself, O Wise One, know You as the Primordial Provider of that."
11   [The Cow:] "Where are Truth, Good Mind, and [their] power? Know me,
          through the mortal one,3
    You, O Wise One, in Your concern for the great offering.
    Come down to us now, O Lord, on account of our gift for those like you."