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A History of Sanskrit Literature by MacDonell

Relate to the ceremonial of the Samaveda


To

the Rigveda belong the Crauta manuals of two Sutra schools (charanas), the Cankhayanas and the Acvalayanas, the former of whom were in later times settled in Northern Gujarat, the latter in the South between the Godavari and the Krishna. The ritual is described in much the same order by both, but the account of the great royal sacrifices is much more detailed in the Cankhayana Crauta Sutra. The latter, which is closely connected with the Cankhayana Brahmana, seems to be the older of the two, on the ground both of its matter and of its style, which in many parts resembles that of the Brahmanas. It consists of eighteen books, the last two of which were added later, and correspond to the first two books of the Kaushitaki Aranyaka. The Crauta Sutra of Acvalayana, which consists of twelve books, is related to the Aitareya Brahmana. Acvalayana is also known as the author of the fourth book of the Aitareya Aranyaka, and was according to tradition the pupil of Caunaka.

Three Crauta Sutras to the Samaveda have been preserved. The oldest, that of Macaka, also called Arsheya-kalpa, is nothing more than an enumeration of the prayers belonging to the various ceremonies of the Soma sacrifice in the order of the Panchavimca Brahmana. The Crauta Sutra composed by Latyayana, became the accepted manual of the Kauthuma school. This Sutra, like that of Macaka, which it quotes, is closely connected with the Panchavimca Brahmana. The Crauta Sutra of Drahyayana, which

differs but little from that of Latyayana, belongs to the Ranayaniya branch of the Samaveda.

To the White Yajurveda belongs the Crauta Sutra of Katyayana. This manual, which consists of twenty-six chapters, on the whole strictly follows the sacrificial order of the Catapatha Brahmana. Three of its chapters (xxii.-xxiv.), however, relate to the ceremonial of the Samaveda. Owing to the enigmatical character of its style, it appears to be one of the later productions of the Sutra period.

No less than six Crauta Sutras belonging to the Black Yajurveda have been preserved, but only two of them have as yet been published. Four of these form a very closely connected group, being part of the Kalpa Sutras of four subdivisions of the Taittiriya Cakha, which represented the later sutra schools (charanas) not claiming a special revelation of Veda or Brahmana. The Crauta Sutra of Apastamba forms the first twenty-four of the thirty chapters (pracnas) into which his Kalpa Sutra is divided; and that of Hiranyakecin, an offshoot of the Apastambas, the first eighteen of the twenty-nine chapters of his Kalpa Sutra. The Sutra of Baudhayana, who is older than Apastamba, as well as that of Bharadvaja, has not yet been published.

Connected with the Maitrayani Samhita is the Manava Crauta Sutra. It belongs to the Manavas, who were a subdivision of the Maitrayaniyas, and to whom the law-book of Manu probably traces its origin. It seems to be one of the oldest. It has a descriptive character, resembling the Brahmana parts of the Yajurveda, and differing from them only in simply describing the course of the sacrifice, to the exclusion of legends, speculations, or discussions of any kind. There is also a Vaikhanasa Crauta Sutra attached to the Black Yajurveda, but it is known only in a few MSS.

The Crauta Sutra of the Atharva-veda is the Vaitana Sutra. It is neither old nor original, but was undoubtedly compiled in order to supply the Atharva, like the other Vedas, with a Sutra of its own. It probably received its name from the word with which it begins, since the term vaitana ("relating to the three sacrificial fires") is equally applicable to all Crauta Sutras. It agrees to a considerable extent with the Gopatha Brahmana, though it distinctly follows the Sutra of Katyayana to the White Yajurveda. One indication of its lateness is the fact that whereas in other cases a Grihya regularly presupposes the Crauta Sutra, the Vaitana is dependent on the domestic sutra of the Atharva-veda.


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