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The Buddha's Way of Virtue, by W.D.C Wagiswara and K.J. Saunders, [1920], at

p. 18 p. 19


An accurate and sympathetic knowledge of Buddhism and of the spirit of the Buddha is best got from such a book as the Dhammapada, which contains the concentrated essence of the religion. In view of widespread misinterpretation, a literal and accessible translation of this book, therefore, needs no apology. I have worked at the translation throughout with my friend Mr. Wagiswara, himself a Buddhist, and for many years a Bhikkhu; that fact and the appearance of our translation in this series will vouch for sympathetic treatment in the rendering. It is notoriously difficult to find the exact English equivalents of Eastern terms, yet we trust that the spirit has been truly reproduced, and our version aims rather at accuracy than at elegance. Great thoughts are best "plain-set," and moreover it is impossible to reproduce the music of the old slokas of Indian poetry. We have referred frequently to Dr. Fausböll's Latin version, and occasionally to Professor Max Müller's edition in "The Sacred Books of the East." Only where the Sinhalese and Chinese commentaries are really illuminating have I referred to them in the notes, for which I am chiefly responsible.

K. J. S.

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