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ORIGIN AND HISTORY
THE PEOPLE OF INDIA,
THEIR RELIGION AND INSTITUTIONS,
COLLECTED, TRANSLATED, AND ILLUSTRATED,
J. MUIR, D.C.L., LL.D., PH.D.
THE VEDAS: OPINIONS OF THEIR AUTHORS AND OF LATER INDIAN WRITERS
ON THEIR ORIGIN, INSPIRATION, AND AUTHORITY.
SECOND EDITION, REVISED AND ENLARGED.
Arthopoarah rishayo devatās chhandobhir abhyadhāvan
Anukramanikā. “Rishis, seeking to obtain the various objects of their desire, bastened to the deities with metrical compositions."
(See p. 211 of thus volume.)
The object which I have had in view in the series of of treatises which this volume forms a part, has been to investigate critically the most important points in the civil and religious history of the Hindus. Having shown in the First Volume that the mythical and legendary accounts given in the Purānas, etc., regarding the origin of the caste system which has long prevailed in India, are mutually contradictory and insufficient to establish the early existence of the popular belief regarding the distinct creation of four separate tribes, as an original and essential article of the Brahmanical creed; and having endeavoured to prove, in the Second Volume, by a variety of arguments, drawn chiefly from comparative philology and from the contents of the Rigveda, that the Hindus are descended from a branch of the Indo-European stock, which dwelt originally along with the other cognate races in Central Asia, and subsequently migrated into Northern Hindustan, where the Brahmanical religion and institutions were developed and matured ;—I now come, in this Third Volume, to consider more particularly the history of the Vedas, regarded as the sacred Scriptures of the Hindus, and the inspired source from • which their religious and philosophical systems (though,