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[Bibliotheca Buddhica I:] Çikshāsamuccaya. A compendium of Buddhistic teaching compiled by Çāntideva chiefly from earlier Mahāyāna-sūtras. Edited by Cecil Bendall. St.-Pétersbourg, 1897 (I), 1898 (II), 1901 (III), 1902 (IV).


As the Introduction gives all that I have at present to say on the text itself, the present remarks are confined to some explanations of my own work upon it.

The Introduction deals with the text from several points of view; but one important aspect is left untouched: namely, its value as an exposition of Mahāyāna-teaching. In spite of the difficulty in getting Oriental translations published I am continuing the preparation of a translation of the text, and I hope either in connection with this, or as a separate essay, to bring out the more important doctrinal features of the book, feeling as I do that it contains much matter likely to interest a wider circle of readers than a publication such as the present can commmand. The argument of the book, however, will be at once gathered from the Summary, which follows the Introduction; and it is hoped that the notices of subject-matter added in Index I will also serve to illustrate not only the Çikshāsamuccaya but also the numerous works (mostly lost in then- original text) from which it draws its inspiration.

The considerable bulk of the ‘Additional Notes’ constitutes a rather heterogeneous feature in the work. My object in writing foot-notes was to render the study of this often difficult text as attractive as might be to students acquainted with non-Buddhistic Sanskrit only: — lokāvarjanāya as Çāntideva would say. My desire was to spare such readers the annoyance of turning to a commentary as well as to a glossary at the end of the book. A further advantage has accrued from this arrangement in the shape of various criticisms that the notes have received during the progress of the edition, so that I have been enabled to correct and to supplement. For this reason and more especially on account of the great progress made in Buddhistic studies during the seven years occupied in the work, I have after all to request my readers to refer to the Additional Notes as well as to the footnotes, particularly in the early part of the hook.

The Glossary (Index II) follows the same lines as the notes. I have included in it some rare words even though registered in the two dictionaries of Böhtlingk. In the hope of advancing the interpretation of Buddhistic terminology I have often preferred to the discreet silence of the mere in de x verborum an explanation which I felt to be only provisional and liable to correction in the light of future research. Both Index II and Introduction § 4 are of course to be regarded as contributions merely, not as exhaustive catalogues of the lexical and grammatical peculiarities.

There remains now only the pleasant duty of acknowledging varied help received. My friend Serge d’Oldenburg, who some eight years ago induced me to undertake this edition, has aided me from first to last by many useful suggestions and by unobtrusive help the more appreciated because given by him often during times of great personal affliction. His place as acting editor was occasionally taken by Dr. C. Salemann, whose sympathies and knowledge extend beyond the Iranian studies by which he is best known.

Professor E. B. Cowell to whom the work is dedicated, gave me much help and encouragement in the earlier stage of the work.

Help from Chinese Sources from the late Thomas Watters, acknowledged in the Introduction to Fasc. I, was continued up to my friend’s lamented death in January 1901. By an extraordinary piece of good fortune my help from the Far East did not end here. For in the same year Prof. Leumann read a portion of Fase. I with his Japanese pupil Mr. U. Wogihara, and put me into communication with this gentleman whose dexterity in handling the vast Chinese literature of translations from the Sanskrit is astonishing. The results of his identifications of many passages are registered in Index I and in Additional Notes. His skill in finding his way through literary jungles is only equalled by his courteous promptitude as a correspondent. Prof. Leumann himself has been good enough also to read the proofs of § 4 of the Introduction. My friend and former pupil Mrs Bode was kind enough to write out for press the Indices, which I had jotted down, very roughly; and most kindly volunteered for the dreary labour of verifying each index-reference in the proofs.

Last but not least comes my γνήσιος σύζυγος, associated both as an editor of Çāntideva and in the present Bibliotheca, Louis de la Vallee Poussin. His keen interest in the Mahāyāna no less than his friendly sympathy for my work have made him my most active helper (Note 1: Other literary help is acknowledged in the notes; but I must add a word here as to aid in photography from my friends Dr. F. J. Allen and Miss E. Ridding), and every sheet of the book has in some way profited by his suggestions. The intimate relation of his commentator Prajñāramati to the Çikshāsamuccaya is explained in the Introduction § 3 ; and if this worthy has sometimes deceived his readers by a parade of ‘borrowed plumes’ of erudition, I can only say with the poet:

Utiliter nobis perfidus ille fuit.

I cannot conclude these remarks without once more referring to the liberality of the Imperial Academy of Sciences in the inception and carrying out of the present international series. The Academy worthily maintains its great traditions of patronage for Oriental learning, and sets a noble example to all nations, especially such as number amongst their-fellow subjects adherents of Oriental faiths, amongst which the ‘Good Law’ of Buddha must ever take a prominent place.

Cambridge, August 1902.

Cecil Bendall


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