F. E. Pargiter

British civil servant and orientalist

Frederick Eden Pargiter (1852 - 18 February 1927) was a British civil servant and Orientalist.

Quotes edit

  • "There is a strong presumption in favor of (Indian) tradition; if anyone contests tradition, the burden lies on him to show that it is wrong."
    • as attributed in [1]
  • "Indian tradition knows nothing whatever of the Aryans' invasion of India through the north-west....All this copious tradition was falsely fabricated, and the truth has been absolutely lost, if the current theory is right; is that probable? If all this tradition is false, why, how, and in whose interests was it all fabricated.?"
    • as attributed in [2]
  • "If the Aryans had entered India from the north-west, and had advanced eastward through the Punjab only as far as the Saraswati or Jumna when the Rigvedic hymns were composed, it is very surprising that the hymn arranges the rivers, not according to their progress, but reversaly from the Ganges which they had hardly reached. " Imam me gange yamune sarasvati sutudri stomam sacata parusnaya asiknya marudvrdhe vitastayarjikiye srnuhya susomaya " (x 75.05) O Ganga, Yamuna, Sarasvati, Sutudri (Sutlej), Parushini (Ravi), hear my praise! Listen to my call, Asikni (Chenab), Marudvridha (Maruvardhvan), Vitasta (Jhelum) with Arjikiya, Sushoma (Sohan).
    • as attributed in [3]

Ancient Indian Historical Tradition (1962) edit

Ancient Indian Historical Tradition by F.E. Pargiter, Motilal Banarsidas, Delhi-Varanasi-Patna, 1962. Quoted in Talageri, S. (2000). The Rigveda: A historical analysis. New Delhi: Aditya Prakashan.

  • Indian tradition knows nothing of any Aila or Aryan invasion of India from Afghanistan, nor of any gradual advance from thence eastwards.
  • The Aryans began at Allahabad, conquered and spread out northwest, west and south, and had by YayAti’s time occupied precisely the region known as MadhyadeSa… They expanded afterwards into the Punjab and East Afghanistan, into West India and the northwest Dekhan…
  • Indian tradition distinctly asserts that there was an Aila outflow of the Druhyus through the northwest into the countries beyond where they founded various kingdoms.
  • There is nothing in them (Puranic accounts), as far as I am aware, really inconsistent with the most ancient book we possess, namely, the Rigveda, and they throw much light thereon, and on all problems concerning ancient India.
  • The bulk of the Rigveda was composed in the great development of Brahmanism that arose under the succesors of king Bharata who reigned in the upper Ganges-Jumna doab and plain;
  • Tradition… makes the earliest connexion of the Veda to be with the eastern region and not with the Punjab.
  • [The fact that there are Indo-European languages outside India: Pargiter clearly attributes the presence of these languages to the] Aila outflow of the Druhyus through the northwest into the countries beyond where they founded various kingdoms.
  • There was an outflow of people from India before the fifteenth century BC.
  • The arguments used to prove the advance of the Aryans from Afghanistan into the Punjab might simply be reversed.
  • [tradition] makes the Aila power begin at Allahabad and yet distinctly suggests that they came from outside India.
  • Tradition or myth… directly indicates that the Ailas (or Aryans) entered India from the mid-Himalayan region.
  • All ancient Indian belief and veneration were directed to the mid-Himalayan region, the only original sacred outside land, and it was thither that rishis and kings turned their steps in devotion, never to the northwest.
  • The next Druhyu king Gandhāra retired to the northwest and gave his name to the Gandhāra country.
  • One branch, headed by Uśīnara established several kingdoms on the eastern border of the Punjab [...] his famous son Śivi originated the Śivis [footnote: called Śivas in Rigveda VII.18.7] in Śivapura, and extending his conquests westwards [...] occupying the whole of the Punjab except the northwestern corner.
  • "The Druhyus occupied the Punjab, and Mandhātṛ of Ayodhya had a long war with the Druhyu king Aruddha or Aṅgāra and killed him" (PARGITER 1962:167).
  • [Mandhātā pushed past] "the prostrate Paurava realm, and pushing beyond them westwards, he had a long contest with and conquered the Druhyu king who appears to have been then on the confines of the Panjab, so that the next Druhyu king Gandhāra retired to the northwest and gave his name to the Gandhāra country" (PARGITER 1962:262).

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