NOTE ON THE BHÂNAVÂRAS.
As the division into Bhânavâras or Portions for Recitation is of some value in the history of the way in which the books were handed down, and is now overshadowed by the more practical division for modern purposes adopted in this translation into chapters and sections, the following table may be of use:--
On this it may be observed--
1. The last Bhânavâra in each Khandhaka is not referred to either by name or by number, except in Mahâvagga II, and in Kullavagga VII and X. In the Mahâvagga fourteen of the Bhânavâras have special titles, independent of their number in the particular Khandhaka.
2. Probably two Bhânavâras in Mahâvagga V, all the Bhânavâras in Kullavagga I-IV, and the first in Kullavagga V, are not noticed in the printed text.
3. Making allowance for these we have in the Mahâvagga 31 (? 32) Bhânavâras, occupying about 350 pages of Pâli text, and about 610 pages in our translation. In books V-XII of the Kullavagga we have 20 Bhânavâras, occupying about 200 pages of Pâli text, and about 350 pages in our translation. Total 51 (? 52) Bhânavâras, occupying about 550 pages of Pâli, and about 960 pages of translation.
4. As in the printed text repetitions have been avoided by a mode of reference to former passages which was impossible in the MSS., the average length of the matter contained in a Bhânavâra, as written much more in full in the MSS., would be somewhat greater than its average length as actually printed. It would probably amount to what, if printed verbatim, would occupy in space not much less than a sheet of the size and type used in the edition of the text. Thus the three Bhânavâras in Mahâvagga VIII, which owing to the subject-matter are printed with only a few such contractions, occupy respectively 14, 13, and 16 pages of the text.
5. The recital in the usual sara-bhañña (or intonation, see Kullavagga V, 3) of such a 'portion for recitation' would occupy in time about half-an-hour.
6. Spence Hardy informs us in his 'Eastern Monachism' (p. 168) that the Dîgha Nikâya contains 64, the Magghima Nikâya 80, the Samyutta Nikâya 100, and the Aṅguttara Nikâya 120 Bhânavâras. In fact it is only a few of the longer Suttas in the first two collections which are actually divided into Bhânavâras in the MSS.; and only the longer Nipâtas in the Aṅguttara. There are no Bhânavâras in the Eka- and Duka-Nipâtas of that collection; and there are also none in the Samyutta Nikâya, and none in any of the books of the later literature contained in the Abhidhamma Pitaka (including all those in the Khuddaka Nikâya) as yet published.
417:1 Sic. This is the only instance in the Vinaya of a masculine use of the word.
7. The division into Bhânavâras is not made use of in many books of the Pitakas themselves, or in the fifth-century commentaries of Buddhaghosa and others. In the Sutta-vibhaṅga it is only used in Pârâgikas I-III, and in the Parivâra not at all. When Spence Hardy says therefore (loc. cit. p. 172) that the Pitakas and commentaries combined contain 5347 Bhânavâras, he must be referring to a mere calculation and not to the actual use of the MSS. On the other hand, the fact of Bhânavâras being used in the Dîpavamsa and the Khudda-sikkhâ may possibly afford some clue to the age in which those works were composed.
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