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Saḍvinśa Brāhmaṇa

From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

Saḍvinśa Brāhmaṇa literally means ‘the twenty-sixth Brāhmaṇa’.

Significance of Saḍvinśa Brāhmaṇa[edit]

The most important Brāhmaṇa of the Sāmaveda is the Tandy a Mahābrāhmana. It is also known as Pañcavinśa Brāhmana, since it contains pañcaviṅśa or twenty-five sections. The Sadvinśa Brāhmana is the twenty-sixth section. It is more an appendix of the former and probably added later. There are five prapāṭhakas or chapters in this work, the fifth one being known as the Adbhuta Brāhmana.

Content of Saḍvinśa Brāhmaṇa[edit]

The first four prapāthakas deal exhaustively with various aspects of Somayāgas. The subjects dealt with may be summarized as follows:

  • Pravargya - an independent rite, but performed as a part of Jyotiṣtoma sacrifice
  • Upasad - another rite of the iṣṭi group
  • Chanting of the Subrahmaṇyasāma - a mantra of the Sāmaveda inviting Indra
  • How to extract the soma juice during the three periods; morning, noon and evening
  • Some prāyaścittas or expiations for lapses in the performance of the rites
  • Methods of selecting the ṛtviks or priests
  • Certain ābhicārika[1] rites
  • Explanations of Svāhā and Svadhā considered as deities
  • Etc.


  1. Ābhicārika means magical
  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore