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A SHORT STUDY OF THE


JATAKA-AT U VA-GATAPADAYA
I). E. HrrlrARATCar, M. A.
Tnn Briddhist c:inonical texts irave i-.een tire rnain s,turce of informatiorr
for most of the ivorks o{ Sinhalese writers. And of these, the Jatakas
have lield a special fascination. From r''ery earlv times, almost altr
the important poerns, u'ith the exception of the Sende(as, irave had tire
Jatakas as their theines. The Jatakiis serr.-ed ior recreati<-rn as well as
instruction ar.rctr edification, and this {;rct accounts for their great
popularitr- as is evidenced b1'tlie weatrth of extant exegetical literature,
such as Saiines, Gatapadas and Sinhalese renderings of the Jitakas.
I'he Jataka-A.tuva-G:itapaclavzr is a gloss:rr\. explaining the difhcult
terms in tire Fali Jatakatthakatha. \\rho irs a.uthor w;rs cannot be
stated witir anl' degree o{ certaipit';. Jtidging from the langtiagc, the
book mar. be assigncci to tire latter half of thc Polonnaruva period.
It is certainlr' Latcr than the Dhampiva-Atr-rva-diltapadal-a rn'ritten b-i'
Kasyapa V in the tenth centurv. Ttrrat work is clearll- niarked b1,' an a.bun<lanie if Pali ':lerir.atives and loan-worifs, and bl' other featurcs
"rtrich
speak of the o','erlvheiming influence PaIi had exerted on the language.
a
The Sanskrit elemerit, though not altogettrer rvanting, plavs secondarv
part. puite the reverse is the case wittr the Jataka-,A'trii'a-GAfapadaya.
It reflects the great rer-ival of Sanskrit learning during tire Polonnamva

13odhi-Vamsa-Gzi-tapada1.3 is attother wortr< r.erv much


like it in language and belonging to the same period.
The author of tlie JAtaka-Atur,'a-Gitapadaya appears to have been
an erudite scholar, thorr-rughl1 proficier.it in religious lore as well as
Sanskrit learning. Altirough ollv a few works like tsuddha-Vamsa and
Caril'a-Pitaka are referred to by'narne in the bodv oi the book, the authon
seems to have consulted severarl other canrxical texts and commentaries.
His leaning tou,'ards Sanskrit is seen in ttre Sanskrit definiiions given to a
number of words in preference to the Pali rrnes. Tlie term bodhi is

period. Ihe

dhyate'n,ena

ceti kttvtt'-karunayolt

bodfuir-wargah, buddhat:an-iti hartavi

bodhir-ji,r,anam, abutltlltyateti kavmani bod.hir-nirttanam siikrat-kartatyat",:dt

(p. +-1. 22--25); again the derivations of the Pali wortls saigalto,
aannanii and g7t'rl are gi'u'en in Sanskrit asprthag visttr'tt,unam ekattol>asamhorah saigrahah @.+, z8--3o) , tarnyate'nenartha itr' li&/na.nd',n (5, zo-zz),
giratyannapanamiti grh;a (42, ro--rr). In the phrase yani pu,rii jatakani
tlie different uses r,,f ttre Fali ternt pnri are given in Sanskrit :
andgate satt nikr ste--tathatite civantane
kaladtaye'pi kavibhih--Pttya tubd.o ni!>utyatc (4, rr -rz)
In explaining the Pali rvords sallia (+, lS), cord.'petvu (+,.r, :), tltthdpesi
Qo, 14) gadhali (ro8, 2!\, baviiretr.,d (ro9, r), at,ah.ititi;it (tzZ, il', dissanti
(zr8, g) , etc. the roots ilre given according to Sanskrit grammarians.
The author's acquaint;rnce rvith Brahrnanical works in Sanskrit is seen

in passages

d.j

ana - adhlt

like

sad dharnr.d brahmanasya--dana-pratigrahanaltajanci'


a y an a a dlryt lrl> anamiti (7, z o --z z) .

No. 97--rq;4,11

.JATAKA ATUVA GAT.SPADAY_.\

22t

Although the lang'.ragc o{ the Jataka-Atuva-Gdtapaciava is, generally


a forrn of mixecl Sinhalese rvith an i bunclronce tif SiLnskrii
loan-worcls, there is in it :i stratum crf langu:rge as olcl as the Dharnpiy;rAtuva-G:itapaclava. c.g., rupuggaq5paltant:e i'ayd i,escs ru,r,ah kaiari
iiinek'hidu ntiti biit;in yuli.h,i at'ason-pat (p. :.6, zg-,3ci, ai:tjasun:
kantr,-hahdtasatu (p. 15, 16) ; loha-t;idu-sc.t,su.hhortt-rn.,as-le, dat
speaking,

irli, r4--r5) ;

etc.

often a Pali fernr or" pirrase is hrst expla.ined in old sinhalcse, agrecing
verv closeh- I,r'itir tl-ic original Fali expressiun, and is again rendered in i
simpler and mLrre rnodern form. e.X., sokka,-dattiyotru--sak-d(iti,iakvaya dsin dena-ladti,li u
1,a -vartttl i (r', 3u- 3t) ; arttantcna:dtatin4elarara kelavarri-ya yanuui (z(t, z:,--zz); jdtcrggim.-dli-gin,i hn,at r.eatt, da
-yantryi
pa{,an, riiki gini--rdfon datas geno nonit,d. naiigct tibtV gi,rti tta
1rrz,

z-4).

In the Jatak.-At*r'a-Giitapeidava are found a few semi-lcan u'ords like


dfutan (2t9, 14) medita.tion:Sk. dlrydna, jl.ran (zzo,3ci) id.:p. jhana;
nidhrm, (27t., z!) treasure:P. Sk. n,idhana; brarn-sara-vas (227, ay noty

:rnc1-pure-life:.P. brahma-cariya-vr.isa; etc. as are seen more abundantly


in the l)hampiya-Atuva-GAtapadar;a. It also contains a rvealth of old

Sinhalese words which are of great interest to the Sinhalese stuclent.


1.g., ada-damu \96, rt) half-burnt:P. atidha-jjhanra, Sk. ardha-ksina;
ry'i-bat,a (18, r; orn'nership, claim; kasitr-uelaiideh (SS, rz) a trader, a
harvker:P. kaccha-pnta-ztanijo ; krihiis-pan (f , z+) recc.rrcls. registers-p.
iTya-potthahant, ; ku,busva l+t,Sz) having submerged:P. ojjhottharihta ;
Cehitili. (r^3, 15-*16) a hook, a polc with a hook:p. ankusa i'pata go, t7,

+j, T) from:P. patthaya; lomit'tl (ro6, zo) having maiticated:p.


; ztisamba. (rzr, z6) intimacv:Sk. t,iirambTo Q) : so4adaat

stt4,thhaditaa

by hunger:P. chato'jjkaila; si3tukn (8,g) a place


four roads meet:P. cat,kka, Sk. c,tu,sha; - ltcri.-t,im.- (67, 23,
r38, zo ; zot, 2J) being a sharer; etc.
irz7,

28,) overcome

,vhere

Amidst these are aiso to be founcl some r',,orcis rvhich are in ordinarv use
i:ven today,
!g , baQa bettrv (38,rr) , i,ituritba hecl (8o,28) ; lipa fire-place
t1o: 17), paralq ra{ters (+:, +), a.ttikaram paJ,ment in aclvance (Sfi z6),
ptiduru mats (6r,
JE ; r,15, {), attt, branches (6:, rq), huliyuhire,wige (67,
; r\,
.i'om-Ltaln brinjrl(h,'{, l{r). htnitl,,ttru rield 1lix, zt\.,,rlcitpflns (7h. r\. puia
pot-herbs (78,16). tampckT a kind of pot-herb (Zg, ,t), *inut ligs (8:, , ;
rrz, 6), l>aiiduru bushes $ocl, 2i, iiitl"itl left c,ver frtrm a mcaf (rtr,23,

rz) tatrd bat (ttt, zc.), kulla winnrtwing'fan (rr:, 9; rfu, zr),
1,8.2,
,1ti.llya,cooking pan (r13, 4), tipalta surety (rzB, :li) , tiritti,t trnt (t:r, ,
f1
,,AAa knock (I+-1. :o), liiida well (r5o, 6), t,url,a-diya liigh-ticle (16!, rb),
i:i tl_i)'a low-ride (;b5. rr1, ,.alla garclcn (rx,1. 22 : r(15, tz)
t.
.tohai,r irun
ii87, z-*3), l>otta bark (zrz., t6. zo), etc.
A few w-ords which iiave crept i'rtci Sinha.lese frr.rin I)ravidian sources
irie also to L.re met with iri llrelataka-Atula-Giitapaclirya e.g., kattalaya
fxttnt, limit (39, z), angani market-place (Sg, zgl ,-kwritlli iron hammer,
pic:k-axc
\S+, z6), tadi'pcie fc,r carri'ing a"Ictacl"(67, zo), hutl.aya basket
'l(,,.r2),

A,7d.z

fermented gruel, rice-watir

(zc:c1,

z7)', potti buntlie

(f

,zg),

'22)'.
',1'tAA'tr turcl,eS 1r.1,1. b).
hulltrA,;1 Oip" ,.n
f(!ltt;'Li)t!.t clrest (rr, t.
i9li, z9), panant a coin (Sq, i3), t'cutdtu,a li-il 1OS,'r51 and Aall
knife,
i,I:eapon (zrz, rg).

-i'he

author shows a specizil fondness {or using a 'h ' where


6) slancier-, pihinarmah'/tu. (r5g, zg)

.':i.er possible. e.9., heheldnt, (tSq,

222

one who

JOLTRNAL,
sw'it-r'ts,

ltihtilla

R.A.S. (CEYLON)

Vor. XXXVi.

(rzt, zr) plank, pohorut'a (12r, z3) plank, board,

etc. Sometimesa'h' is augn'rented even in places where the etvmology


of thc word cloes not warrant its use. e.g., h'asun (49' zz' r,1,1, z3) seat:
P. Sk. tisana', s-r-hunu, (So, 8) cold ar-rd hot:P. sttttltha, Sk. $to;na;
hu,\twsrtm' \7o, zil - u1llt (P. np,ha, Sk' usna)-Tusttm (P' ttsma' Sk'
r,/;man) : hikma (r:S, z-i) hai'ing passed beyond:1hnr'a', hatlaai (t27, zB)
P. ajjltatta, Sk' adh'yatwta-', etcbelonging to self, internal
-

The Pali extracts quoted from tlie JatakatthakathS to be explained in


the Gdtapadava, difier in numerous places from the ctlrresponding extracts
found in the printed Pali text. Such variations have been noted bV Sir
D. B. Ja1'atilakn in his edition of the Jdtaka-Atuvd-Gritapadava (ed.r9,13).
In a number of instances the Paii extracts which have been commented
upon by our author are {ound compJetelv missing in ttre Pali Jatakattakatha. All these readings are of inestimable value in forming a criticai
estimate of the text of tire Pali.Jatakatthakatha. '[o ciie a few of them:-

Ip
(19.33) v.l abh,ir au ant i I'ausboll-Jitaka
.abh'isaranli
.
Ip
(66, to) ,, ttpdyo
u.pd,ydso
rIp
udd,esa-mattena (r22,t9)., uddesa-maggettLt ,.
(r34.zz).. pure-dtalena
tIp
puta-dudrena
III p
wahii-dhilm,om hntud (z39.t q) ., mahd-thupam katuu ,,

rE

ver. 99

186 1.9
47 1.21

i{o. 97 -t944)

JATAI{A ATLIVA GATAPADAYA

)))

There is an old Sanne* for the eight Jatakas: Tetniy,,r, )[uhaiun,aka"


'idma, Iiimi, Bhrtrid,atta, Ndrada kasiapa, r,'idhurtt arul Khahrtaha,ta
,vhich in. point of. language
fhe lataka-Atur-d-Gritapaday;r
^resemble
,'ery much. There is another Sanneos
for the.f ataka \.erses, wriiteri bv;t
;cholar called Rajamurari somewhere aboui the r.jth centuri'. Tiris
work explains onll' r5o5 verses covering 44E .Jatakas. The rest of ii
lias been completed b1. a modern sch,._,lar. It was the pansiva-panas.ataka Pota. above all other n'orks. tlrat Puprl[lpized the.faraka stories.
i'hat certain Jatakas, in pilrticuiar, appealed to tlie pe'pli is shown b1r
,arious selections like the Ata-Jataka and the Daia-Jataku, and bi,
irumerous versiflcations of popular Jataka stories. Somi Jatakas, as ,,
inark of_ their popularitl', have more than on{-. prose r-ersion. Ihus
ireside.the .Ummagga Jataka occurring in the Pansi],a-panas-Jatakaibta, there is _a_ncther prose rendering of Ltre same ld.takat rviiicrr lpp"ort
ir, be older. Had it not been written earlier, the author worrld noiliave
i:lt the need of rew'ritingl it after the Pansiva-panas-Jataka-pota tracl
i,een completed.

+ Ala-Dd.-Sanne ,Ftrst Part, the Sanne of Temiva J:-itak:r, publisherl b1- D. G.


I'ltaragunarltnl. \\'ellg:rm:. r9to.
Jd.taka-Gith5. sannava, ecited bv Badclegama liirti Sri Dhamr.aratana,
' 51
cligalna. tuz,r
t

Ummagga JAtakar.a (Purd.na Pifapata) ed. D. C. Weerakkocli, Cokrrnbo, r97.5.

r53 l. z5
461

1. 3-.1.

Although the Jitaka-Atuva-Giitapadal'a is primarill' concerned with

explaining the dithculties in the Pali text, it occasionally throrvs interesting sideJights on the social conditions of the periocl. That beef-eating
was looked dou'n upon b1'the people of this tin're is proved by the note Lrn
bheri-t,adaka-kttle (7q, r8-r9). 'fhe explanations of the ternrs sisakahapanadini (tz, ro--tq) and janglta-kahapa4a (r43, zr-23) shed sorne
light on ancient methods o{ taxation.

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All the manuscripts of the Jitaka-Atuva-Gdtapadal-a that I have, so


far, come across, end with the Vidhura Jataka. Although the Ummagga
and the Vessantara Jatakas have not been dealt with in the present work,

made good in the case of the \,'essantara Jdtaka by


an independent work called Vesaturu-Da-Gd.tapadatta. In all probability that may have been an earlier work, and on account of its existence,
the author of the Jataka-Atuva-Gzitapadava ma'r, not helt'e feit the treed of
commenting again on the Vessantara Jitaka. The language of
the Vesaturu-Da-Gdtapadava is not so Sanskritic as that of the
Jataka-Atuva-Gitapadaya, and the language also presents greater
uniiormity. Although certain portions of the Jataka Atuva-Gdtapadaya
appear to be olcler than the language of the Vesaturu-I)a-Gdtapaday,'a
on making a close studl of the two, one callnot but tidmit that, on the
whole, the latter is older tiran the former.

that loss

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