Sutta Nipata

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The Sutta Nipāta[1] (lit.'Section of the Suttas') is a Buddhist scripture, a sutta collection in the Khuddaka Nikaya, part of the Pali Canon of Theravada Buddhism. All its suttas, thought to originate from before the Buddha's parinibbana, consist largely of verse, though some also contain some prose.


The Sutta Nipāta is divided into five sections:

Uraga Vagga ("The Chapter on the Serpent")[2]

Sutta number Pali title English title[3]
Sn I.1 Uraga Sutta "The Serpent"
Sn I.2 Dhaniya Sutta
Sn I.3 Khaggavisāṇa Sutta "The Rhinoceros"
Sn I.4 Kasibhāradvāja Sutta
Sn I.5 Cunda Sutta
Sn I.6 Parābhava Sutta "Downfall"
Sn I.7 Vasala Sutta "The Outcast"
Sn I.8 Metta Sutta "Loving-Kindness"
Sn I.9 Hemavata Sutta
Sn I.10 Āḷavaka Sutta
Sn I.11 Vijaya Sutta "Victory"
Sn I.12 Muni Sutta

Cūla Vagga ("The Minor Chapter")

Sutta number Pali title English title
Sn II.1 Ratana Sutta "Gems"
Sn II.2 Āmaghanda Sutta "Carrion"
Sn II.3 Hiri Sutta "Moral Shame"
Sn II.4 Mahāmaṅgala Sutta "Blessings"
Sn II.5 Sūciloma Sutta
Sn II.6 Dhammacariya Sutta "Righteous Conduct"
Sn II.7 Brāhmaṇadhammika Sutta "The Tradition of the Brahmins"
Sn II.8 Nāvā Sutta "The Boat"
Sn II.9 Kiṃsīla Sutta "What Good Behavior?"
Sn II.10 Uṭṭhāna Sutta "Arouse Yourselves!"
Sn II.11 Rāhula Sutta
Sn II.12 Vaṅgīsa Sutta
Sn II.13 Sammāparibbājanīya Sutta "Proper Wandering"
Sn II.14 Dhammika Sutta

Mahā Vagga ("The Great Chapter")

Sutta number Pali title English title
Sn III.1 Pabbajjā Sutta "The Going Forth"
Sn III.2 Padhāna Sutta "Striving"
Sn III.3 Subhāsita Sutta "Well Spoken"
Sn III.4 Sundarikabhāradvāja Sutta
Sn III.5 Māgha Sutta
Sn III.6 Sabhiya Sutta
Sn III.7 Sela Sutta
Sn III.8 Salla Sutta "The Dart"
Sn III.9 Vāseṭṭha Sutta
Sn III.10 Kokālika Sutta
Sn III.11 Nālaka Sutta
Sn III.12 Dvayatānupassanā Sutta "Contemplation of Dyads"

Atthaka Vagga "The Chapter of Octads"

Sutta number Pali title English title
Sn IV.1 Kāma Sutta "Sensual Pleasures"
Sn IV.2 Guhaṭṭhaka Sutta "The Octad on the Cave"
Sn IV.3 Duṭṭhaṭṭhaka Sutta "The Octad on the Hostile"
Sn IV.4 Suddhaṭṭhaka Sutta "The Octad on the Pure"
Sn IV.5 Paramaṭṭhaka Sutta "The Octad on the Supreme"
Sn IV.6 Jarā Sutta "Old Age"
Sn IV.7 Tissametteyya Sutta
Sn IV.8 Pasūra Sutta
Sn IV.9 Māgandiya Sutta
Sn IV.10 Purābheda Sutta "Before the Breakup"
Sn IV.11 Kalahavivāda Sutta "Quarrels and Disputes"
Sn IV.12 Cūlaviyūha Sutta The Smaller Discourse on Deployment"
Sn IV.13 Mahāviyūha Sutta "The Greater Discourse on Deployment"
Sn IV.14 Tuvaṭaka Sutta "Quickly"
Sn IV.15 Attadaṇḍa Sutta "One Who Has Taken Up the Rod"
Sn IV.16 Sāriputta Sutta

Parayana Vagga ("The Chapter on the Way Beyond")

Sutta number Pali title English title
Introductory verses
Sn V.1 Ajitamāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Ajita"
Sn V.2 Tissametteyyamāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Tissa Metteyya"
Sn V.3 Puṇṇakamāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Puṇṇaka"
Sn V.4 Mettagūmāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Mettagū"
Sn V.5 Dhotakamāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Dhotaka"
Sn V.6 Upasīvamāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Upasīva"
Sn V.7 Nandamāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Nanda"
Sn V.8 Hemakamāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Hemaka"
Sn V.9 Todeyyamāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Todeyya"
Sn V.10 Kappamāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Kappa"
Sn V.11 Jatukaṇṇīmāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Jatukaṇṇī"
Sn V.12 Bhadrāvudhamāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Bhadrāvudha"
Sn V.13 Udayamāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Udaya"
Sn V.14 Posālamāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Posāla"
Sn V.15 Mogharājamāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Magharāja"
Sn V.16 Piṅgiyamāṇavapucchā "The Questions of Piṅgiya"


Some scholars[4] believe that it describes the oldest of all Buddhist practices. Others such as Bhikkhu Bodhi[5] and K. R. Norman[6] agree that it contains much early material.

In the Chinese Buddhist canon, a version of the Aṭṭhakavagga has survived. Fragmentary materials from a Sanskrit version of the Nipata also survive.[7]

The Niddesa, a commentary in two parts on the contents of the Atthaka Vagga and portions of the Parayana Vagga, is included in the Pali Canon as a book of the Khuddaka Nikāya. This commentary is traditionally attributed to Śāriputra, and its presence in the canon is regarded as evidence of the relatively early composition of the Sutta Nipata.[8]

English TranslationsEdit

  • Tr V. Fausbøll, in Sacred Books of the East, volume X, Clarendon/Oxford, 1881; reprinted by Motilal Banarsidass, Delhi (?and by Dover, New York)
  • Buddha's Teachings, tr Lord Chalmers, Harvard Oriental Series, 1932
  • Woven cadences of early Buddhists, transl. by E. M. Hare. Sacred Books of the Buddhists vol.15, repr. - London: Oxford University Press, 1947 Internet Archive (PDF 11.4 MB)
  • The Group of Discourses, tr K. R. Norman, 1984, Pali Text Society[1], Bristol; the original edition included alternative translations by I. B. Horner & Walpola Rahula; these are currently available in the paperback edition under the title The Rhinoceros Horn and Other Early Buddhist Poems; the current edition under the original title omits these, but includes instead the translator's notes, not included in the paperback
  • Tr Saddhatissa, Curzon, London/Humanities Press, New York, 1985
  • Tr N. A. Jayawickrama, University of Kelaniya, 2001
  • Bodhi, Bhikkhu (2017). The Suttanipata: An Ancient Collection of the Buddha's Discourses and Its Canonical Commentaries. Wisdom Publications. ISBN 9781614294290.

German TranslationEdit

  • Tr Nyanaponika, Verlag Beyerlein & Steinschulte, D 95236 Stammbach, Germany, 3. Auflage 1996

See alsoEdit



  1. ^ When referencing suttas from the Sutta Nipāta the case-sensitive abbreviation "Sn" is used. This is distinguished from the abbreviation "SN" which traditionally refers to the Pali canon's Samyutta Nikaya.
  2. ^ Sutta names, spellings, and translations are taken from Bodhi Bhikku, The Suttanipāta—other translators may have made different choices.
  3. ^ Where no translation is given, the sutta is named after a person.
  4. ^ Nakamura, Indian Buddhism, Japan, 1980; reprinted by Motilal Banarsidass, Delhi, 1987, 1989, pp. 45-6.
  5. ^ Bodhi, Sutta-Nipāta - The oldest discourses in the Pali Canon (lectures),
  6. ^ Norman, KR. The Rhinoceros Horn and Other Early Buddhist Poems (Sutta-Nipata), 1985.
  7. ^ Hoernle, A. F. Rudolf, The Sutta Nipata in a Sanskrit Version from Eastern Turkestan, The Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland (Oct., 1916), pp. 709-732 Published by: Cambridge University Press
  8. ^ Norman, Kenneth Roy (1983). Pali Literature. Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz. pp. 63-70. ISBN 3-447-02285-X.


External linksEdit