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Vihāradevī

Wife of Kākavaṇṇa Tissa and mother of Duṭṭhagāmaṇī and Saddhā Tissa. She was the daughter of Tissa, king of Kalyāṇī and was cast adrift in a boat on the ocean in order to appease the sea gods in their wrath against Tissa for having killed an Arahant. Her name was Devī, but because she came ashore near the monastery of Tolaka (?) (This is probably the correct reading of the name; see MT. 432) she was called Vihāradevī (Mhv.xxii.20 ff). When with her first child, she longed to eat a honeycomb one furlong (usabha) in length and to drink the water in which had been washed the sword used in cutting off the head of Nandasārathī, chief of Eḷāra’s warriors (Mhv.42 ff; MT. 441). When she was the second time with child, she wished to lie under a campaka tree in bloom and inhale its fragrance (MT.443).

When her husband died, Saddhā Tissa carried her off, hoping thus to win the kingdom, but she was later restored to Duṭṭhagāmaṇī. She was wise and practical and helped in Duṭṭhagāmaṇī’s campaigns, especially in the capture of Ambatittha and Anurādhapura (Mhv.xxv.9, 55). We know nothing of her later history.

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