186 REVIEWS Peter Masefield (tr.), The Udana Commentary by Dhammapala . Trans- lated from the Pali. Volume I. Oxford, The Pali Text Society, 1994. XVI, 566 pp. ISBN 086013-316-8; Volume II. Oxford, 1995. III, 567– 1171 pp. ISBN 086013-317-6 The Udana commentary is the third commentary by Dhammapala to be translated by Peter Masefield. Together with U Ba Kyaw he translated Dhammapala’s Petavatthu commentary (1980). In 1989 he published a translation of Dhammapala’s Vimanavatthu commentary. His translation of the Udana commentary was preceded by a translation of the Udana (Oxford, 1994). Moreover, Peter Masefield wrote a book entitled Divine Revelation in Pali Buddhism (London, 1986). The Udana commentary was published by F. L. Woodward in 1926. Masefield indicates as date of publication 1925, probably because the introduction is dated April, 1925. However, the date on the title- page is 1926. Woodward’s edition was mainly based upon a Sinhalese manuscript and a Sinhalese printed edition by Devarakkhita Nayaka Thero (Colombo, 1920). Masefield has been able to use the revised edition of Devarakkhita’s work (Colombo, 1928) and editions in Burmese and Thai characters. Masefield is highly critical of Woodward’s edition and in his notes he corrects it in numerous places so that his translation is at the same time a new and revised edition of the Udana commentary. The only problem is that Masefield’s emendations are somewhat submerged in the notes which follow the translation of each chapter. For instance, the translation of chapter one (pp. 17–146) is followed by 1530 notes (pp. 147–261). It is a great pity that it has not been possible to print the notes at the foot of the page. Masefield acknowledges the assistance he has received from Ole Holten Pind in grammatical matters and from Bhikkhu Bodhi who revised his translation of the commentary on the first three suttas (Ud-a pp. 6–51). On p. 249 he also mentions the help he received from Tissa Rajapatirana (not Rajatirapatirani). The reviewer must confess that he has not compared the translation from the beginning to the end with the text but one has only to read a number of passages to see that Peter Masefield has spared no efforts to translate Dhammapala’s commentary, which is not always easy, as carefully as possible. 4 Jansz Crescent, Manuka ACT 2603 J.W. DE JONG Australia reviews.tex; 19/06/1997; 0:02; v.6; p.30
Indo-Iranian Journal – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 1997
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