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Surya are two attendants, those nearest carrying chawries, another a sword, and the fourth a cup. At their feet are smaller figures with bows, from which they appear to have just discharged their arrows. In the back ground are the figures, animals, and foliage, usually seen in Hindu sculptures.
CHANDRA, or SOMA,
The moon, is described as a male, and is painted young, beautiful, and of dazzling fairness; two-armed, and having in his hands a club and a lotus. He is usually riding on or in a car drawn by an antelope. (See fig. 1, plate 25.) Being a Kettrie, he is of the warrior caste. It is fortunate to be born under this planet, as the individual will possess many friends, together with the high distinctions and enjoyments of life. Soma presides over Somwar, or Monday.
Although Soma or Chandra is here described as a male, he is occasionally represented as Chandri, a female; in which character being visited by Surya, she produced a numerous family, called Pulinda. In the third volume of the Asiatic Researches, this sexual change is accounted for by Colonel Wilford, who says, "when the moon is in opposition to the sun, it is the god Chandra, but when in conjunction with it, the goddess Chandri, who is in that state feigned to have produced the Pulindas."
The moon was also worshipped as male and female, Lunus and Luna, by the Egyptians; the men sacrificing to it as Luna, the women as Lunus; and each sex, on these occasions, assuming the dress of the other.
The Hindus have in their zodiac twenty-seven lunar mansions, called Nakshatra, or daily positions of the moon; and as, to perfect the revolutions, some odd hours are required, they have added another not included in the regular chart. These twenty-eight diurnal mansions from the zodiac having been invented by Daksha, are personified as the daughters of that deity, and are the mythological wives of Chandra. In the chart of the lunar mansions they are curiously represented, as a horse's head, a yoni, a razor, an arrow, a wheel, a bedstead, a house, &c. &c. Some make them the
daughters of Kasyapa, the brother of Daksha. Sir William Jones has thus
"Thou, nectar-beaming moon,
From yon bright roe that in thy bosom sleeps,
Thy night-flowers pale, whom liquid odour steeps,
And Oshadi's f transcendant beam,
Burning in the darkest glade?
Will no lov\l name thy gentle mind persuade,
Yet one short hour to shed thy cooling stream?
But, ah! we court a passing dream;
Our prayers not Indu } nor Himansu § hears—
He fades, he disappears;
E'en Kasyapa's || gay daughters twinkling die,
And silence loves the sky,
Till Chatacs twitter from the morning brake,
And sandal-breathing gales on beds of ether wake."1
Chandra, besides Indu and Himansu, has many names: Nishaputi, lord of the night; Mrigranku, he who has a deer in his lap; Kshupakara, he who illumines the night, &c. &c.
Although Kartikeya is the leader of the celestial armies, Mungula is the Mars of the Hindus. He is one of the planets, and is of the Kettrie caste. He was produced from the sweat of Siva's brow; and is painted of a red or flame-colour, with four arms, holding in his hands a trident, a club, a lotus, and a spear. (See fig. 2, plate 25.) His vahan is a ram. Those who are born under this planet are subject to losses and misfortunes; but it is considered fortunate (it may be presumed to the assailant) to engage in battle
* Sasin, the roe. -J- Oshadi, a wife of Chandra.
% § Indu, Himansu, names of Chandra. || The astronomical wives of Chandra.
on Mungulwar, or Tuesday, over which day he presides. Like many other martial personages, Mungula is said to be of a fierce and arbitrary disposition.
The planet Mercury of the Hindus, is the son of Soma or Chandra and Rohini. He is a Kettrie, and the first of the Chandrabans, or lunar race of sovereigns. He is represented as being eloquent and mild, and of a greenish colour. In one of the zodiacs he is seated on a carpet, holding in his hands a sceptre and a lotus: in another, he is riding on an eagle. He is elsewhere described sitting in a car drawn by lions; and by Ward, as mounted on a lion. In one of the compartments of the temple at Ramnaghur he is represented, very appropriately, on a winged lion, holding in three of his hands a scimitar, a club, and a shield. (See fig. 3, plate 25.)
Budh is the god of merchandize and the protector of merchants; he is, therefore, an object of worship by theBys caste. It is fortunate to be born under this planet. Budh presides over Budhwar, or Wednesday. The bow, according to Colonel Delamaine, is sacred to Budh, being an emblem of his yielding disposition. It was selected by the sage Dunwuntree, and by him presented to that god; saying, "I have this day completed the circle of my knowledge, and he who shall reverence this token of thee, to him shall knowledge be given, and his diseases vanish."
BRISHPUT, or VRIHUSPATI,
Is the regent of the planet Jupiter, and the preceptor of the gods, hence called their guru. He is the son of Ungira, a son of Brahma, and is of the Brahman caste. He is described of a golden or yellow colour, sitting on a horse, and holding in his hands a stick, a lotus, ana his beads. (See fig. 1, plate 26.) The Hindus consider it fortunate to be born under this planet, and are strict in their worship of Brishput. Besides being called Guru or the preceptor, he is termed Gishputu, the eloquent, &c. &c. Vrihuspatwar, or Thursday, is the day over which he presides. The mango-tree is sacred to him.