The Rig Veda Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What did Martanda's name originally mean in "Aditi and the Birth of the Gods"?

2. The traditional _____ in the Rig Veda is the tale of the king and the priest.

3. What are the human and demonic enemies of the invading Indo-Aryans?

4. Cows appear in the metaphors involving Soma as _____ or water.

5. The word for heart mind and life-spirit is _____.

Short Essay Questions

1. Who are the three brothers in "The Riddle of the Sacrifice" and with whom are they associated in the text?

2. What are the first ritual laws called, and what is their purpose?

3. What is the sacred grass in "The Hymn of Man" and what is it used for?

4. What does the hymn, "The Sacrificial Priests", liken the work of the priests to? How?

5. Who eats from the tree of knowledge in "The Riddle of the Sacrifice", and what does this mean?

6. How is butter visualized in the hymn, "Butter"?

7. What is the role of the goat in "The Sacrifice of the Horse" and for whom does it do this?

8. What is the meaning of the horse carrying the body in "Requiem for a Horse"?

9. What is meant by the "mist" metaphor in "Aditi and the Birth of the Gods"?

10. What is the state of clarity of the early stages of creation in "The All-maker", according to the author, and why?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Describe the ritual involved in the sacrifice of the horse. Describe of each stage of the sacrifice. Who is involved? Who is the sacrifice dedicated to?

Essay Topic 2

Describe how Dawn performs her duties in "Dawn and the Avins". What does she drive back every day? How does she shower men with her gifts?

Essay Topic 3

What role does 'butter' play in the Rig Veda? What is its literal meaning in this context? Find examples of and explain its metaphorical meaning.

(see the answer keys)

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