Avesta: Translation of Excerpt from Vendidad on The Eight Kinds of Dogs

sarabi_hight

Excerpt of verses 124-162 of Fargard 8 of the Vendidad, translated by me from the French translation of Charles-Joseph de Harlez de Deulin, a Catholic scholar.

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(124-123) The dog has eight kinds of natural dispositions. There are the atharvan (priest), the warrior, the farmer, the slave, the thief, the beast of prey, the courtesan, and the child.

[atharvan] (124-125) He receives for food a part of a meal, like an atharvan. He seeks to content like an atharvan; he is armed like an atharvan; he is content with little food like an atharvan. Thus are the dispositions that are common between him and the atharvan.

[warrior] (131-134) He leaps upon what is before him like a warrior; he chases the cow of excellent endowments; he goes before and behind the residence, like a warrior. Thus are the dispositions that are common between him and the warrior.

[farmer] (135-138) He has a vigilance that never gives way to sleep, like the farmer; he walks before the herd that exits the cowshed; he follows the herd that returns to the cowshed, like a farmer. Thus are the qualities that are common between him and the shepherd-farmer.

[slave] (139-142) He does what is pleasing (to others) like a slave; he is mistreated by those around him, like a slave; everything is meagerly portioned out to him as to a slave; in all things he is ruled and subjugated like a slave. Thus is his similarity to the slave.

[thief] (143-147) He searches the darkness like a thief; he is pleased with the darkness of the night like a thief; he eats what he has not prepared, like a thief; he is unfaithful to the (laws of the) depot, like a thief. Thus are the qualities that are common between him and the thief.

[beast of prey] (148-154) He loves the darkness like a beast of prey, he remains in the darkness of the night; he eats what he has not prepared, like a thief; he is unfaithful to the (laws of the) depot, like a thief. Thus are the qualities that are common between him and the beast of prey.

[courtesan] (155-157) He seeks to please like a courtesan; he injures what he approaches like a courtesan; (he is found) far off on the roads like a courtesan. Thus are the qualities that are common between him and courtesans.

[child] (158-162) He loves to sleep like a child; he runs around everywhere like a child; he has a long tongue like a child; he runs ahead, here and there like a child. Thus are the qualities that are common between him and the child.

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(image is a Persian (Sarabi) Mastiff, courtesy of ghomi from facebook)

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