How is Indra's appearance described within the Rig-Veda?

(Only looking for answers from the Rig Veda, not any other Vedas)

1 Answer 1


The Rig Veda describes many characteristics of Indra.

8.17.8 offers a general description...

Long-necked, large-bellied, strong-armed Indra, in the exhilaration of the (sacrificial) food, destroys his enemies.”

And two main features of Indra that are mentioned over and over in the Rig Veda are his jaw (strong), and his hair (golden). Here are two examples:


“The yellow-bearded, yellow-haired, iron-hearted Indra, the drinker of the yellow (Soma), who has been invigorated by the Soma which has to be quickly quaffed, who is rich in sacrificial food through his swift bay horses, may he drive his two bay horses safe through all difficulties.”


“I invoke the victorious handsome-jawed Indra for your protection, and to hear (your praises), as (a traveller invokes) the water from the cloud.”

He is also described as being handsome in general: 1.29.2:

“Your benevolence, handsome and mighty lord of food, endures for ever; therefore, Indra, of boundless wealth, enrich us with thousands of excellent cows and horses.”

And he appears to have large feet: 10.73.3:

Vast, (Indra), are your feet; when you advance, the Vājas, and whatsoever (deities are) there animated you; you, Indra, hold a thousand jackals in your mouth, may you bring back the Aśvins.”

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