From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

Śamitṛ literally means ‘one who silences the animal victim’.

In the Somayāgas of the paśubandha type where an animal is sacrificed, the person who kills the animal by suffocating or strangulating it is called a śamitṛ. He may be a trained butcher or even the adhvaryu priest himself. In a previously arranged spot where the severed limbs of the victim are to be roasted, new fire is to be lighted. It is called śāmitra. This fire may be produced newly by attrition or by drawing it from the āhavanīya fire itself.


  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore