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Brahmadatta

1. Brahmadatta.– King of Kāsi. He captured Kosala and murdered its king Dīghiti and Dīghiti’s wife, but made peace later with Dīghiti’s son, Dīghāvu, restored to him his father’s kingdom, and gave him his own daughter in marriage. Vin.i.342 ff; DhA.i.56 f.

2. Brahmadatta.– King of the Assakas and friend of Reṇu. When Mahāgovinda divided Jambudīpa into seven equal portions for Reṇu and his six friends, Brahmadatta was given the kingdom, of the Assakas, with Potama as his capital. D.ii.235 f.

3. Brahmadatta.– In the Jātaka Commentary this is given as the name of numerous kings of Bārāṇasī. In most cases we are told nothing further of them than that they reigned at Bārāṇasī at the time of the incidents related in the story. Brahmadatta, was probably the dynastic name of the kings of Bārāṇasī. Thus, for instance, in the Gaṅgamāla Jātaka (J.iii.452) Udaya, king of Bārāṇasī, is addressed as Brahmadatta.

In the Gaṇḍatindu Jātaka (J.v.102‑106) however, Pañcāla, king of Uttarapañcāla, is also called Brahmadatta; in this case it was evidently his personal name. It was also the name of the husband of Piṅgiyāni (q.v.) He was a king, but we are not told of what country. He is identified (J.v.444) with Kuṇāla.

4. Brahmadatta Thera.– He was the son of the king of Kosala, and, having witnessed the Buddha’s majesty at the consecration of Jetavana, he entered the Order and in due course became an Arahant. One day, while going for alms, he was abused by a brahmin, but kept silence. Again and again the brahmin abused him, and the people marvelled at the patience of Brahmadatta, who then taught them on the wisdom of not returning abuse for abuse. The brahmin was much moved and entered the Order under Brahmadatta. Thag. vs. 441‑6; ThagA.i.460 ff.

5. Brahmadatta.– Head of a dynasty of thirty-six kings, all of whom ruled at Hatthipura. His ancestors ruled at Kapilanagara. MT. 127; Dpv.iii.18.

6. Brahmadatta.– A Pacceka Buddha. In the time of Kassapa Buddha he had been a monk and had lived in the forest for twenty thousand years. He was then born as the son of the king of Bārāṇasī. When his father died he became king, ruling over twenty thousand cities with Bārāṇasī as the capital, but, wishing for quiet, he retired into solitude in the palace.

His wife tired of him and committed adultery with a minister who was banished on the discovery of his offence. He then took service under another king and persuaded him to attack Brahmadatta. Brahmadatta’s minister, much against his will, and having promised not to take life, made a sudden attack on the enemy and drove them away. Brahmadatta, seated on the field of battle, developed thoughts of loving-kindness (mettā) and became a Pacceka Buddha. SNA.i.58 ff.

7. Brahmadatta.– A brahmin, father of Kassapa Buddha. J.i.43; Bu.xxv.34.

8. Brahmadatta.– Pupil of the wanderer (paribbājaka) Suppiya. A conversation between these two led to the teaching of the Brahmajāla Sutta. D.i.1.

9. Brahmadatta.– A monk, sometimes credited with having supplied the illustrations to the aphorisms in Kaccāyana’s grammar. P.L.C. 180.

10. Brahmadatta.– See also Ekaputtika°, Catumāsika°, Cūḷani°, and Sāgara°, and s.v. Brahmadatta-kumāra.

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