The Hymn 127 of Book 20 of Atharva Veda glorifies the king Kaurama who is further mentioned with the name of Parikshit:

  1. Listen to this, ye men, a laud of glorious bounty shall be sung. Thousands sixty, and ninety we, O Kaurama, among the Rusamas have received.
  2. Camels twice-ten that draw the car, with females by their side, he gave. Fain would the chariot's top bow down escaping from the stroke of heaven.
  3. A hundred chains of gold, ten wreaths, upon thee Rishi he bestowed, And thrice-a-hundred mettled steeds, ten-times-a-thousand cows he gave.
  4. Glut thee, O Singer, glut thee like a bird on a ripe-fruited tree. Thy lips and tongue move swiftly like the sharp blades of a pair of shears.
  5. Quickly and willingly like kine forth come the singers and their hymns: Their little maidens are at home, at home they wait upon the cows.
  6. O Singer, bring thou forth the hymn that findeth cattle, findeth: wealth. Even as an archer aims his shaft address this prayer unto the Gods.
  7. List to Parikshit's eulogy, the sovran whom all people love, The King who ruleth over all, excelling mortals as a God.
  8. 'Mounting his throne, Parikshit, best of all, hath given us peace and rest,' Saith a Kauravya to his wife as he is ordering his house.
  9. 'Which shall I set before thee, curds, gruel of milk, or barley- brew?' Thus the wife asks her husband in the realm which King Parikshit rules.
  10. Up as it were to heavenly light springs the ripe corn above the cleft. Happily thrive the people in the land where King Parikshit reigns.
  11. Indra hath waked the bard and said, Rise, wander singing here and there. Praise me, the strong: each pious man will give thee riches in return,
  12. Here, cows! increase and multiply, here ye, O horses, here, O men. Here, with a thousand rich rewards, doth Pūshan also seat him- self.
  13. O Indra, let these cows be safe, their master free from injury. Let not the hostile-hearted or the robber have control of them.
  14. Oft and again we glorify the hero with our hymn of praise, with prayer, with our auspicious prayer. Take pleasure in the songs we sing: let evil never fall on us.

We have been told that Rishi Ved-vyas divided the Vedas into four at the onset of Kaliyug which seems about the right time for the rule of Parikshit (if it is the same Parikshit from Mahabharat). Some people claim that Vyas had divided Vedas into three only and the Atharva Veda is a later addition.

In either case, do any of the scriptures mention specifically who was ruling at the time of the compilation of the four Vedas (in former case) or specifically at the time of Atharva Veda (in case second scenario is true)?

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    Yes, it is said that Atharva Veda is divided later. That is the reason it is said Triveda and three Vedas in the Ramayana. It is divided later by Vyasa's disciple or some rishi. I don't remember the name. Aug 17, 2018 at 5:25
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    That may be so but the question is about a scriptural reference that mentions the same especially the bit about Parikshit. Aug 17, 2018 at 6:39
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    Very interesting! Would be good to know if somewhere they mention who the rulers were at that time. Oct 3, 2018 at 16:21

1 Answer 1


The Parikshit of Vedic texts is not necessarily the son of Abhimanyu. There was another Parikshit, the great-great-great-grandfather of Bhishma. An earlier Parikshit is mentioned in Kuru genealogy mentioned in Sambhava Parva, Mahabharata.

From Sambhava Parva

And of her was born a son named Parikshit, who took for his wife Suvasa, the daughter of the Vahudas, and begat upon her a son named Bhimasena. And Bhimasena married Kumari, the princess of Kekaya and begat upon her Pratisravas whose son was Pratipa. And Pratipa married Sunanda, the daughter of Sivi, and begat upon her three sons, viz., Devapi, Santanu and Valhika. And Devapi, while still a boy, entered the woods as a hermit. And Santanu became king. Here occurs a sloka in respect of Santanu.

It is impossible to say with certainty which Parikshit is meant in the hymn. However, in hymn 129, book 20, Atharvaveda, there is a mention of Pratipa Prātisutvana, who was the father of Santanu and Balhika. Vyasa Rishi was the son of Santanu's second wife, Satyavati (from Parashara Rishi). So this hymn is likely to be older than Vyasa. I also think it unlikely that hymns 127 & 129 of the same book 20 would be separated by too many generations. Let us also not forget that book 20 is probably the latest part of Atharvaveda.

  • Yes there can be more than one people with the same name but how do we judge which one of them was it? Apr 21, 2020 at 10:25
  • @Dr.VineetAggarwal I have edited my answer
    – Benny007
    Nov 1, 2020 at 21:06
  • I explained here hinduism.stackexchange.com/questions/42918/…. He is likely a Pauloma, not human, because Arjuna is not his real grandfather (at least not for the life he became famous for), thus he really could be that old. Nov 1, 2020 at 22:19

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