1. Now when the Blessed One had remained at Râgagaha as long as he thought fit, he set forth on his journey towards Dakkhinâ-giri (the Southern Hills 2). And the Blessed One beheld how the Magadha rice fields were divided into short pieces 3,
and in rows 1, and by outside boundaries 2 (or ridges), and by cross boundaries 3.
On seeing this the Blessed One spake thus to the venerable Ânanda: 'Dost thou perceive, Ânanda, how the Magadha rice fields are divided into short pieces, and in rows, and by outside boundaries, and by cross boundaries?'
'Even so, Lord.'
'Could you, Ânanda, provide 4 robes of a like kind for the Bhikkhus?'
'I could, Lord.'
Now when the Blessed One had remained in the Southern Hills as long as he thought fit, he returned again to Râgagaha.
Then Ânanda provided robes of a like kind for many Bhikkhus; and going up to the place where the Blessed One was, he spake thus to the Blessed One: 'May the Blessed One be pleased to look at the robes which I have provided.'
2. Then the Blessed One on that occasion addressed the Bhikkhus and said: 'An able man, O Bhikkhus, is Ânanda; of great understanding, O Bhikkhus, is Ânanda, inasmuch as what has been spoken by me in short that can he understand in full, and can make the cross seams 5, and the
intermediate cross seams 1, and the greater circles 2, and the lesser circles 3, and the turning in 4, and the lining of the turning in 5, and the collar piece 6, and the knee piece 7, and the elbow piece 8. And it shall be of torn pieces 9, roughly sewn together 10, suitable for a Samana, a thing which his enemies cannot covet 11. I enjoin upon you, O Bhikkhus, the use of an under robe of torn pieces, and of an upper robe of torn pieces, and of a waist cloth of torn pieces 12.'
207:2 These are always mentioned in connection with Râgagaha (Mahâvagga I, 53 Kullavagga XI, 1-10), and are probably the name of the mountainous district immediately south of Râgagaha.
207:3 Akkibaddhan (sic) ti katurassakedârakabaddham (B.). I have never seen a field divided 'ray-fashion,' which would apparently be the literal translation of the term, and it is difficult to see how the necessary water could be conducted from strip to strip of a field so divided. Buddhaghosa also, though his explanation is insufficient, evidently does not take akki in the ordinary sense (Rh. D.).
208:1 Palibaddhan (sic) ti âyâmato ka vitthârato ka dighamariyâdabaddham (B.).
208:2 Mariyâdabaddhan (sic) ti antarantarâya mariyâdâya mariyâdabaddham (B.).
208:3 Siṅghâtakabaddhan (sic) ti mariyâdâyâ (sic) mariyâdam vinivigghitvâ gatatthâne siṅghâtakabaddham. Katukkasanthânan ti attho (B.).
208:4 Samvidahitun ti kâtum (B.).
208:5 Kusim pi ’ti âyâmato ka vitthârato ka anuvâtâdînam dîghapattânam etam adhivakanam (B.).
209:1 Addhakusî ti antarantarâ rassa-pattânam nâmam (B.).
209:2 Mandalan ti pañka-khandika-kîvarassa ekekasmim khande mahâ-mandalam (B.).
209:3 Addhamandalan ti khuddaka-mandalam (B.).
209:4 Vivattan ti mandalañ ka addha-mandalañ ka ekato katvâ sibbitam magghima-khandam (B.).
209:5 Anuvivattan ti tassa ubhosu passesu dve khandâni. Athavâ vivattassa ekekapassato dvinnam pi katunnam pi khandânam etam nâmam (B.).
209:6 Gîveyyakan ti gîva-tthâne dalhi-karan-attham aññam suttam sibbitam âgantuka-pattam (B.).
209:7 Gaṅgheyyakan ti gaṅlgha-pâpuna-tthâne tatth’ eva samsibbita-pattam. Gîva-tthâne ka gaṅgha-tthâne ka pattânam ev’ etam nâman ti pi vadanti (B.).
209:8 Bâhantan ti anuvivattânam bahi ekekakhandam. Athavâ suppamânam kîvaram pârupentena samharitâ bâhâya upari thapitâ ubho anto-bahi-mukhâ titthanti. Tesam etam nâmam. Ayam eva hi nayo Mahâ-atthakathâyam vutto ti (B.). This latter explanation from bâhâ seems evidently more correct than the other one from bahi; and we accordingly follow it.
209:9 See the end of the last chapter.
209:10 Satta-lûkha; in which compound the signification of satta is by no means clear. Buddhaghosa has no note upon it. Now it is curious that in chapter 21, below, it is laid down that the robe is to be sutta-lûkha, the meaning of which would fit this passage excellently. We have accordingly adopted that reading here.
209:11 Compare the similar expressions at Gâtaka I, 8 and 9.
209:12 The general sense of this chapter is clear enough. As an Indian field, the common property of the village community, was p. 210 divided, for the purposes of cultivation, across and across, so must also the Bhikkhu's robe be divided. That some, both of the agricultural and of the tailoring terms, should now be unintelligible to us is not surprising. Buddhaghosa himself, as the extracts from his commentary show, was not certain of the meaning of them all.