What should be the length of the sacred thread?

(In this answer is quoted Wikipedia saying 96 times of forefinger breadth; but there are no valid references-apart from Wikipedia!)

1 Answer 1


Baudhāyana Dharmasastra 1.5.8

  1. The sacrificial thread (shall be made) of Kusa grass, or cotton, (and consist) of thrice three strings.
  2. (It shall hang down) to the navel.(Upavita)
  3. (In putting it on) he shall raise the right arm, lower the left, and lower the head.
  4. The contrary is done at sacrifices to the manes.
  5. (If the thread is) suspended round the neck,(it is called) nivita.
  6. (If it is) suspended below (the navel, it is called) adhopavita.
  • Great. It's the length to navels and not about 96 breaths. What does thrice three strings mean? Is it 9 strings?
    – Kanthri
    Commented Feb 20, 2022 at 6:27
  • Medhātithi in his Manu Samhita commentary says three yarns. Where as Ganganath Jha the translator has commented as follows:---Trivṛt’—has been explained in Vīramitrodaya as standing for ‘consisting of nine threads’; and thus on the basis of a Śruti text which defines ‘Trivṛt’ as nine. The same explanation is given in Aparārka also;
    – Krsna Dasa
    Commented Feb 20, 2022 at 7:32
  • 1
    Thanks. It's each thread having three strands.
    – Kanthri
    Commented Feb 20, 2022 at 7:37

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