A householder was lodging in a poor old woman’s house on the road from Bārāṇasī to Uttarāpaṭha. During his stay there his thoroughbred mare foaled, and the foal was given to the woman at her request, in part payment of her charges. She brought up the foal as though he were her own child. Some time after, the Bodhisatta, who was then a householder, happened to pass the same way and discovered the thoroughbred’s presence by the behaviour of his own horses. The woman agreed to part with the foal to him for a large price on condition that he should be provided with all manner of luxuries. The Bodhisatta kept his word, and when the king came to inspect his horses, made the foal, who knew his own worth, exhibit his marvellous powers. The king installed him as his state horse, and thereafter the lordship of all India passed into the king’s hands.
The story was told in reference to Sāriputta. Once, when the Buddha was returning to Sāvatthi after a tour, the citizens decided to celebrate his arrival by each one taking on himself the task of feeding a certain number of monks in the Buddha’s retinue. A poor old woman wished to feed a monk, but all the monks were already allotted, only Sāriputta remaining. She invited him to her house, and he accepted her invitation. When it became known that Sāriputta was to feed with her, the king and all the rich citizens of Sāvatthi sent her food and garments and money to help in her entertainment of the elder. As a result, through the kindness of Sāriputta, she became rich in a single day.
Sāriputta is identified with the thoroughbred of the Jātaka (J.ii.286 ﬀ).
This is evidently the same story as that which, in the Dhammapada Commentary (DhA.iii.325), is called the Kuṇḍakasindhayapotaka Jātaka. However, there the story is related, not in reference to Sāriputta, but to the Buddha himself, because he accepted a cake of rice-