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p. 210


1. Now when the Blessed One had remained at Râgagaha as long as he thought fit, he went forth on his journey towards Vesâlî. And the Blessed One, when on the high road between Râgagaha and Vesâlî, saw a number of Bhikkhus smothered up in robes 1, they went along with robes made up into a roll 2 on their heads, or on their backs, or on their waist. And when the Blessed One saw them, he thought: 'With too great celerity have these foolish persons given themselves up to superfluity 3 in the matter of dress. It would be well were I to confine the dress of the Bhikkhus within limits, and were to fix a bound thereto.'

2. And the Blessed One, proceeding in due course on his journey toward Vesâlî, arrived at that place. And there, at Vesâlî, the Blessed One stayed at the Gotamaka shrine 4. And at that time in the cold

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winter nights, in the period between the Ashtakâ festivals when the snow falls 1, the Blessed One sat at night in the open air with but one robe on, and the Blessed One felt not cold. As the first watch of the night was coming to its end, the Blessed One felt cold; and he put on a second robe, and felt not cold. As the middle watch of the night was coming to its end, the Blessed One felt cold; and he put on a third robe, and felt not cold. As the last watch of the night was coming to an end, when the dawn was breaking and the night was far spent 2, the Blessed One felt cold; and he put on a fourth robe, and felt not cold.

3. Then this thought sprang up in the Blessed One's mind: 'Those men of good birth 3 in this doctrine and discipline who are affected by cold, and are afraid of cold, they are able to make use of three robes 4. It were well if in confining within limits the dress of the Bhikkhus, and in fixing a bound thereto, I were to allow the use of three robes.' And on that occasion the Blessed One, when he had

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delivered a religious discourse, addressed the Bhikkhus, and said:

4, 5. 'When on the high road, &c. . . . I saw, &c. . . .  and I thought, &c. . . .  (all the chapter is repeated down to ". . . . I were to allow the use of three robes"). I allow you, O Bhikkhus, the use of three robes, (to wit), a double waist cloth, and a single 1 upper robe, and a single under garment 2.'

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6. Now at that time the Khabbaggiya Bhikkhus, on the ground that three robes had been allowed by the Blessed One, used to frequent the village in one suit of three robes, and in another suit to rest in the Ârâma, and in another to go to the bath. Then those Bhikkhus who were modest were annoyed, murmured, and became indignant, saying, How can the Khabbaggiya Bhikkhus wear extra suits of robes.'

And those Bhikkhus told the matter to the Blessed One. Then the Blessed One on that occasion, when he had delivered a religious discourse, addressed the Bhikkhus, and said:

'You are not, O Bhikkhus, to wear an extra suit of robes. Whosoever does so, shall be dealt with according to law 1:

7. Now at that time the venerable Ânanda had acquired an extra suit of robes, and the venerable Ânanda was desirous of giving the extra suit to the venerable Sâriputta, but the venerable Sâriputta was staying at Sâketa. Then the venerable Ânanda thought: 'It hath been laid down by the Blessed One that we are not to keep an extra suit of robes. Now I have received one, and I want to give it to the venerable Sâriputta; but he is staying at Sâketa. What now shall I do?'

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And the venerable Ânanda told this thing to the Blessed One.

'How long will it be, Ânanda, before the venerable Sâriputta returns?'

'He will come back, Lord, on the ninth or the tenth day from now.'

Then the Blessed One on that occasion, when he had delivered a religious discourse, addressed the Bhikkhus, and said:

'I allow you, O Bhikkhus, to keep an extra suit of robes up to the tenth day 1.'

8. Now at that time the Bhikkhus used to get extra suits of robes given to them. And these Bhikkhus thought: 'What now should we do with extra suits of robes?'

They told this thing to the Blessed One.

'I enjoin upon you, O Bhikkhus, to make over an extra suit of robes (to other Bhikkhus who have no robes 2).'


210:1 Ubbhandite kîvarehi. The former word is of course applied to the Bhikkhus. Compare Childers, under Bhandikâ, and Gâtaka I, 504 (last line but one).

210:2 Bhisî = Sanskrit Brisî. Compare the 14th Pâkittiya, where we ought to have rendered the word 'bolster.' Childers is incorrect in translating it by 'mat'

210:3 Mentioned also, as being near to Vesâlî, in the 'Book of the Great Decease,' III, 2.

210:4 Bâhullâya âvattâ. This phrase occurs in Mahâvagga I, 31, 5.

211:1 See our note on the same phrase at Mahâvagga I, 20, 15.

211:2 Nandimukhiyâ rattiyâ. The derivation of this phrase is uncertain, though the general meaning is not subject to doubt. The Sanskrit form of the whole phrase will be found in the Lalita Vistara at p. 447. Comp. Sâṅkhâyana-grihya, ed. Oldenberg, IV, 4, where the word nândîmukho occurs in a different connection.

211:3 In the text read Ye pi kho kulaputtâ. The idea is that men of lower grade, being accustomed to cold, would not want so many robes. But there must be one rule for all; and the rule is accordingly made to suit the comfort of the weaker brethren--early Buddhism, contrary to an erroneous opinion still frequently ex-pressed, being opposed to asceticism.

211:4 Or, 'to get on with the three robes.' Compare the use of yâpetum in the 'Book of the Great Decease,' II, 32.

212:1 Ekakkiyam. Compare Gâtaka I, 326. Buddhaghosa says dvigunam dupatta-samghâtim ekakkiyam ekapattam. Though 'single,' the lengths of cotton cloth, pieced together, of which the robes were made, were allowed to be doubled at the seams, the collar, the elbows, and the knees. See above, VII, 1, 5.

212:2 The waist cloth (samghâti) was wrapped round the waist and back, and secured with a girdle. The under garment (antaravâsaka; see also the end of this note) was wrapped round the loins and reached below the knee, being fastened round the loins by an end of the cloth being tucked in there; and sometimes also by a girdle. The upper robe (uttarâsamga) was wrapped round the legs from the loins to the ankles, and the end was then drawn, at the back, from the right hip, over the left shoulder, and either (as is still the custom in Siam, and in the Siamese sect in Ceylon) allowed to fall down in front, or (as is still the custom in Burma, and in the Burmese sect in Ceylon) drawn back again over the right shoulder, and allowed to fall down on the back. From the constant reference to the practice of adjusting the robe over one shoulder as a special mark of respect (for instance, Mahâvagga I, 29, 2; IV, 3. 3), the' Burmese custom would seem to be in accordance with the most ancient way of usually wearing the robe. The oldest statues of the Buddha, which represent the robe as falling over only one shoulder, are probably later than the passages just referred to.

The ordinary dress of laymen, even of good family, in Gotama's time was much more scanty than the decent dress thus prescribed for the Bhikkhus. See Rh. D.'s note on the 'Book of the Great Decease,' VI, 26. But it consisted also, like that of the Bhikkhus, not in garments made with sleeves or trousers, to fit the limbs, but in simple lengths of cloth.

The antara-vâsaka corresponds, in the dress of the monks, to p. 213 the sâtika in the dress of ordinary women, and was of the same shape as the udaka-sâtika, or bathing dress, prescribed for the use both of monks (below, chapter 15) and of nuns (Bhikkhunîvibhaṅga, Pâkittiya XXII). The latter was, however, somewhat shorter.

The ordinary dress of the Bhikkhunîs or Sisters consisted of the same three garments as that of the Bhikkhus.

213:1 That is, according to the first Nissaggiya. The first section of the Sutta-vibhaṅga on that rule is identical with this section.

Next: Chapter 14