Bīrūnī, Muḥammad ibn Aḥmad, Alberuni's India (v. 1)

(London :  Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co.,  1910.)



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  Page 379  

CHAPTER XLIII.                            379

to great numbers ; but then ambition, circling round
them with the wings of wrath and envy, begins to dis¬
turb the serene bliss of their life.

Sometimes a nation of such a kind derives its pedi¬
gree from a person who first settled in the place or
distinguished himself by something or other, so that he
alone continues to live in the recollection of the suc¬
ceeding generations, whilst all others beside him are
forgotten, Plato mentions in the Book of Laws Zeus, i.e.
Jupiter, as the forefather of the Greeks, and to Zeus is Pedigree of
traced back the pedigree of Hippocrates, which is men- crates.
tioned in the last chapters added at the end of the book.
We must, however, observe that the pedigree contains
only very few generations, not more than fourteen. It is
the following :—Hippokrates—Gnosidikos—Nebros—
Sostratos — Theodores —■ Kleomyttades — Krisamis —
Dardanas—Sostratos—^jjj^-j^b' (?)—Hippolochos—Po-
daleirios — Machaon—Asclepios—Apollo—Zeus—Kro¬
nos, i.e. Saturn.

The Hindus have   similar  traditions regarding the mndu
Caturyuga, for according to them, at the beginning of regarding
it, i.e. at the beginning of Kritayuga, there was happiness ages or
and safety, fertility and abundance, health and force,
ample knowledge and  a great number of Brahmans,
The good is complete in this age, like four-fourths of a
whole, and life lasted 4000 years alike for all beings
during this whole space of time.

Thereupon things began to decrease and to be mixed
with opposite elements to such a degree, that at the
beginning of Tretayuga the good was thrice as much as
the invading bad, and that bliss was three-quarters of
the whole. There were a greater number of Kshat¬
riyas than of Brahmans, and life had the same length
as in the preceding age. So it is represented by the
Vishnu-Dharm,a, whilst analogy requires that it should
be shorter by the same amount than bliss is smaller, i.e.
by one-fourth.    In this age, when offering to the fire.

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