Page:Myth, Ritual, and Religion (Volume 1).djvu/252

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are "a later development of the more primitive ideas of the Rig-Veda." Magic is quod semper, quod ubique, quod ab omnibus; the ideas of the Atharva-Veda are everywhere; the peculiar notions of the Rig-Veda are the special property of an advanced and highly differentiated people. Even in the present collected shape, M. Barth thinks that many hymns of the Atharva are not much later than those of the Rig-Veda. Mr. Whitney, admitting the lateness of the Atharva as a collection, says, "This would not necessarily imply that the main body of the Atharva hymns were not already in existence when the compilation of the Rig-Veda took place."[1] The Atharva refers to some poets of the Rig (as certain hymnists in the Rig also do) as earlier men. If in the Rig (as Weber says) "there breathes a lively natural feeling, a warm love of nature, while in the Atharva, on the contrary, there predominates an anxious apprehension of evil spirits and their magical powers," it by no means follows that this apprehension is of later origin than the lively feeling for Nature. Rather the reverse. There appears to be no doubt[2] that the style and language of the Atharva are later than those of the Rig. Roth, who recognises the change in language and style, yet considers the Atharva "part of the old literature."[3] He concludes that the Atharva contains many pieces which, "both by their style and ideas, are shown to be contemporary with the older hymns of the Rig-Veda." In religion, according to Muir,[4] the Atharva shows

  1. Journal of the American Oriental Society, iv. 253.
  2. Muir, ii. 446.
  3. Muir, ii. 448.
  4. Muir, ii. 451.