She was born in the family of a very rich burgess of Sāvatthi and was married to the king of Kosala (probably Pasenadi). After a few years a daughter was born to her, whom she named Jīvā (v.l. Jīvantī). The king was so pleased with the child that he had Ubbirī anointed as queen. However, the girl died soon afterwards, and Ubbirī, distracted, went daily to the charnel-
When she was a young girl in Haṃsavatī in the time of Padumuttara Buddha, she was one day left alone in the house. Seeing an Arahant begging for alms, she invited him in and gave him food. As a result she was born in Tāvatiṃsa. Eighty times she reigned as queen in heaven and seventy times as queen among men (Thig.vv.51‑2; ThigA.53 ﬀ).
No mention is made in the Therīgāthā Commentary of her having joined the Order, but the Apadāna (ii.525 f) states that she did so.