Maa, ARAB. Ayar, Ayar-tawar,31mAr.
Hu, . . . ASSYRIAN. Ab, PERS.
Burnt Ku, . . . SerrniAx.
Yuh-yih, . . CHIN. Tanni, . . . . TAM.
Shwui, „ Ncru, TEL.
Ga. Chu, Ti B.
Water, with the Hindus, is used as a synonym for climate. Ab-o-howa, or water and air, is applied similarly by the Muhammadans. Civilisa tion, society, government, law, appear to have originated in countries which have certain water ino.-places or great rivers or perpetual springs, an wells have led men to congregate at particular watering spots. Fountains sacred to the sun and other deities were common to the Persians, Scythians, and Hindus, and both the last offered steeds to him in sacrifice. The Hindu races at the beginning of their religious rites made a pre liminary offering of water, called Ankurapana. Few Hindu sects will tako water to drink froin each other. In Western Gitjerat it is customary for Brahmans to use brass or copper vessels belonging to persons of other castes, af ter they have scrubbed them well with dust and water, and washed them. A leathern bucket need only be washed, because, having come originally from the house of the tanner, who is a person of very low caste, it is supposed that no further defilement can happen to it. Some strict Brahmans, however, will neither drink water which has been drawn in a leathern bucket, nor even use it for ablutions. In parts of Western Gujerat there is frequently but one well in a village, in which case the out castes draw water on one side of it and retire, and when they aro gone Brahmans and other castes come and draw water from the other side. It is usually the case that there are many wells in a village, and that one is specially set apart for out-castes. A well is defiled if a dog or other animal have fallen into it, and, for ita purification, water must be drawn from it five times, and Ganges water or cow's urine poured into it. If a Brahman or Wania woman, returning home vrith water from a well, meet a funeral, she will some times throw away the vvater at once as defiled, sometiines veil herself and move aside, averting her face, and if the corpse be not carried within a few paces of where she stands, the water is pre served from defilement. The dead body of an
animal defiles also, and if one happen to lie on the way to tho well, no water is procurable until it has been removed, and the ground has been purified. Some women will throw away the water if a crow alight on the vessel and put his beak into it, but as the caso is rather a common one, other women take no notice of it. The symbols of the three Hindu deities are respect ively Buie, water, and fire. Besides the well known worship of the holy Ganges, the tribes worship other rivers under the name of Gang amma, and in crossing them it is usual to drop a coin into the water as an offering and the price of a safe passage. In the Dekhan and in Ceylon trees and bushes near springs may often be seen covered with votive offerings. The Khond race also worship rivers and fountains. The people of Sumatra are said to pay a kind of adoration t,o the sea, and to make an offering of cakes and sweetmeats on their beholding it for the first time, deprecating its power of doing them harm. The offerings on the Ganges to Khaja Khizr are of this character.
In the Panjab four kinds of water are found in tho Rewari wells, all of which are used in irriga tion, but tho produce of each varies The first is Shirin or Mitlia, i.e. sweet water, the irrigation from which, in common seasons, does not produce such remarkably fine crops as the other kinds ; but this is infinitely more than compensated by the fact that, in drought years, the produce is certain and abundant.
Second, Matwalla or hard water, the land irrigated by which produces very fine crops, except in drought years, when they are rather inferior, though still good and certain.
Third, Malinalla or brackish water, with which good crops but inferior vegetables are produced in common years ; in drought, however, both aro inferior.