Bīrūnī, Muḥammad ibn Aḥmad, Alberuni's India (v. 2)

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



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  Page 159  

CHAPTER LXX.                             159

" If I lie, he shall have as recompense as much of my
goods as is ecjual to the eightfold of the amount of his

A higher sort of oath is this : The accused person is
invited to drink the bish (vishct ?) called brahmana (?).
It is one of the worst kinds; but if he speaks the truth,
the drink does not do him any harm.

A still higher sort of ordeal is this : They bring the Page 28
man to a deep and rapidly flowing river, or to a deep
well with much water. Then he speaks to the water:
" Since thou belongest to the pure angels, and knowest
both what is secret and public, kill me if I lie, and
preserve me if I speak the truth." Then five men
take him between them and throw him into the
water. If he has spoken the truth, he will not drown
and die.

A still higher sort is the following : The judge sends
both claimant and defendant to the temple of the most
venerated idol of the town or realm. There the defen¬
dant has to fast during that day. On the following day
he dresses in new garments, and posts himself together
with the claimant in that temple. Then the priests
pour water over the idol and give it him to drink. If
he, then, has not spoken the truth, he at once vomits

A still higher sort is the following: The defendant
is placed on the scale of a balance, and is weighed;
whereupon he is taken off the scale, and the scale is
left as it is. Then he invokes as witnesses for the
truth of his deposition the spiritual beings, the angels,
the heavenly beings, one after the other, and all which
he speaks he writes down on a piece of paper, and fastens
it to his head. He is a second time placed in the scale
of the balance. In case he has spoken the truth, he
now weighs more than the first time.

There is also a still higher sort. It is the following:
They take butter and sesame-oil in equal quantities, and
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