Encyclopedia for Epics of Ancient India

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Read about Tvashtri at Wikipedia

TWASHTRI. [Source: Dowson's Classical Dictionary of Hindu Mythology] In the Rigveda this deity is the ideal artist, the divine artisan, the most skillful of workmen, who is versed in all wonderful and admirable contrivances, and corresponds in many respects with Hephaistos and Vulcan. He sharpens and carries the great iron axe, and he forges the thunderbolts of Indra. He is the beautiful, skillful worker, the omniform, the archetype of all forms, the vivifier and the bestower of long life. He imparts generative power and bestows offspring. He forms husband and wife for each other, even from the womb. He develops the seminal germ in the womb, and is the shaper of all forms, human and animal. He had generated a strong man, a lover of the gods, a swift horse, and had created the whole world. As the Satapatha Brahmana expresses it, "He has produced and nourishes a great variety of creatures; all worlds (or beings) are his, and are known to him; he has given to heaven and earth and to all things their forms." He created Brahmanaspati above all creatures, and generated Agni along with heaven and earth, the waters and the Bhrigus. He is master of the universe, the first-born protector and leader, and knows the region of the gods. He is supplicated to nourish the worshipper and protect his sacrifice. He is the bestower of blessings, and is possessed of abundant wealth, and grants prosperity. He is asked, like other gods, to take pleasure in the hymns of his worshippers and to grant them riches. He is associated with the Ribhus, and is represented as sometimes envying and sometimes admiring their skill. He is represented as being occasionally in a state of hostility with Indra, and he had a son named Viswarupa (omniform) or Trisiras, who had three heads, six eyes, and three mouths, who was especially obnoxious to Indra, and was slain by him. He had a daughter, Saranyu, whom he married to Vivaswat, and she was the mother of the Aswins. In the Puranas Twashtri is identified with Viswakarman, the artisan of the gods, and sometimes also with Prajapati. One of the Adityas and one of the Rudras bear this name, as also did a prince descended from Bharata.

Modern Languages MLLL-4993. Indian Epics. Laura Gibbs, Ph.D. The textual material made available at this website is licensed under a Creative Commons License. You must give the original author credit. You may not use this work for commercial purposes. If you alter, transform, or build upon this work, you may distribute the resulting work only under a license identical to this one. No claims are made regarding the status of images used at this website; if you own the copyright privileges to any of these images and believe your copyright privileges have been violated, please contact the webmaster. Page last updated: October 16, 2007 12:22 PM