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

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



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  Page 239  


CHAPTER LXXX.                          239

The author (Varahamihira) had divided the comets page 315.
into three classes : the high ones  near the stars ; the qy^tati^ji^s
fiowing ones near the earth ; the middle ones in the air, ^^°"^.*/^fo£
and he mentions each one of the high and middle classes Jf^.°-^'''^
of them in our table separately.

He further says (chap. xi. 42) :—

" If the light of the middle class of comets shines on
the instruments of the kings, the banners, parasols,
fans, and fly-flaps, this bodes destruction to the rulers.
If it shines on a house, or tree, or mountain, this bodes
destruction to the empire. If it shines on the furni¬
ture of the house, its inhabitants will perish. If it
shines on the sweepings of the house, its owner will

Further Varahamihira says '(chap. xi. 6) :—

" If a shooting-star falls down opposite to the tail of
a comet, health and wellbeing cease, the rains lose their
beneficial effects, and likewise the trees which are holy
to Mahadeva—-there is no use in enumerating them,
since their names and their essences are unknown
among us Muslims—and the conditions in the realm of
Cola, Sita, the Huns and Chinese are troubled."

Further he says (chap. xi. 62) :—

" Examine the direction of the tail of the comet, it
being indifferent whether the tail hangs down or stands
erect or is inclined, and examine the lunar station, the
edge of which is touched by it. In that case predict
destruction to the place and that its inhabitants will be
attacked by armies which will devour them as the pea¬
cock devours the snakes.

" From these comets you must except those which
bode something good.

"As regards the other comets, you must investigate
in what lunar stations they appear, or in what station
their tails lie or to what station their tails reach. In
that case you must predict destruction to the princes
of  those   countries which are indicated by the lunar
  Page 239