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Udena Vatthu

The story cycle of King Udena, in many respects the most interesting of all the stories of the Dhammapada Commentary (DhA.i.161‑231).

It consists of six stories of diverse origin and character, dealing with the fortunes of the king, his three queen-consorts and his treasurer.

Only two of the stories are really concerned with Udena, the rest being introduced by familiar literary devices. Versions of each of the six stories occur in the writings of Buddhaghosa, indicating that they go back to a common source.

Parallels to one or more stories are also to be found in the Divyāvadāna, the Kathāsaritsāgara and other Sanskrit collections and in the Tibetan Kandjur.

For an analysis of the cycle and its parallels see Burlinghame, Buddhist Legends, i., pp.51 and 62 ff.

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