Deccan Nursery Tales eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 94 pages of information about Deccan Nursery Tales.


[1] For an account of the birth of Kartakswami see The Tale of the Tulsi Plants p. 93.

[2] In India days of the week have the same mysterious connexion with the astral bodies that they have in Europe.  Aditwar or Raviwar is sun’s day (Sunday); Somwar is moon’s day (Monday); Mangalwar is Mars’ day (mardi); Budhwar is Mercury’s day (mercredi); Brihaspatiwar is the day of Diespiter or Jupiter (jeudi); Shukrawar is Venus’ day (vendredi); Shaniwar is Saturn’s day (Saturday).

[3] His bad actions in a former life.

[4] All these stories take place in Atpat town.  This literally means “City Splendid.”  But in the tales it is simply a fabulous city.

[5] Although Tuesday is really the day of Mars, Mangal, this tale by a popular error connects the day with Mangalgauri or Parwati, Shiva’s wife.

[6] Budh is Mercury; Brahaspati is Jupiter.

[7] For serpent-maidens of Patala see note to Story XX.

[8] Mahalaxmi is always worshipped in this way.  And it is a common practice for anyone who wants anything to blow on a pot and then wish for it.

[9] Kolhapur is the chief seat of the worship of Mahalaxmi.

[10] Ashwin corresponds approximately with October.

[11] A kind of draughts.

[12] Nagpanchmi Day falls on Shravan Sud 5, i.e. the 5th day of the bright half of Shravan.

[13] Bhatji is the name by which a mendicant Brahman is addressed.

[14] This is called the akshataropan.

[15] Vasishta was the family priest of King Dasaratha, father of Ramchandra.  After death he became one of the stars in the constellation of the Great Bear.

[16] Divali is the feast of lamps in the month of Kartih.

[17] Saripat is a kind of draughts.

[18] Apsaras are attendants on the gods.

[19] Kartakswami was really Parwati’s step-son (see Preface).

[20] The Indians do not associate the Great Bear constellation with a bear, but they believe it to be the habitation of seven rishis.  The seven rishis vary in different works.  In the Mahabharat the names given are Marichi, Atri, Angiras, Pulaha, Kratu, Pulatya, and Vasishta.

[21] Aposhani.  This is the water which a Brahman sips from his hand before and after his meal.

[22] Shravan corresponds roughly with August.  The death of the child nullified all the virtue of the Shradh feast, which had at once to be stopped.

[23] Zhoting is really the unquiet ghost of a Musulman, but hobgoblin is probably a sufficiently close translation.

[24] A tree sacred to Shiva.

[25] The Asuras, who are now reckoned petty demons, had once upon a time a much higher position.  They are the same as Ahura-Magda, the Jupiter of the Iranians.  The latter, curiously enough, degraded the Devas or Hindu Gods to the subordinate place of demons. (Cf.  Rawlinson’s Bactria, page 21.)

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Deccan Nursery Tales from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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