Gāthā Sentence Translation Sentence Structure
Vocabulary&Grammar Commentary Pronunciation
List of Abbreviations

ko imaṃ pathaviṃ vicessati yamalokaṃ ca imaṃ sadevakaṃ

ko dhammapadaṃ sudesitaṃ kusalo puppham iva pacessati

(DhP 44)

Sentence Translation:

Who will investigate this earth and this Yama's world with its deities?
Who will understand this well taught Dharma-verse, as a skilful person picks flowers?

Sentence Structure:

List of Abbreviations

ko            imaṃ  pathaviṃ  vicessati yama+lokaṃ     ca     imaṃ    sadevakaṃ
|                   |             |             |           |         |           |          |              |

Pron.m.    Pron.f.     N.f.      V.act.    N.m.   N.m.   conj.  Pron.m.   Adj.m.

Nom.Sg.  Acc.Sg.  Acc.Sg.  3.Sg.fut.     |     Acc.Sg.    |     Acc.Sg.   Acc.Sg.

|                   |_______|             |            |_____|          |           |             |

|______________|___________|                  |________|______|             |

                |_____|                                                      |    |___________|

                     |                                                           |________|


List of Abbreviations

ko      dhamma+padaṃ sudesitaṃ kusalo  puppham  iva   pacessati
|                |           |            |             |              |         |           |

Pron.m.  N.m.    N.n.     Adj.n.      N.m.       N.n.    part.    V.act.

Nom.Sg.    |     Acc.Sg.  Acc.Sg.  Nom.Sg.  Acc.Sg.    |      3.Sg.fut.

|                |______|            |             |________|         |           |

|                      |__________|                    |_________|           |

|                                |_____________________|                   |



Vocabulary and Grammar:

List of Abbreviations

ko: kiṃ-, Inter.Pron.: who. Nom.Sg.m. = ko.

imaṃ: idaṃ-, Pron.: this. Acc.Sg.f. = imaṃ.

pathaviṃ: pathavī-, N.f.: earth. Acc.Sg. = pathaviṃ.

vicessati: will investigate. The verb is vicināti (to investigate, to examine), the root ci- (to collect, to accumulate) with the prefix vi- ("detail"). 3.Sg.act.fut = vicessati.

List of Abbreviations

yamalokaṃ: yamaloka-, N.m.: Yama's world. A compound of:
    yama-, N.m.: Yama, the ruler of the underworld, the king of death.

    loka-, N.m.; world.

Acc.Sg. = yamalokaṃ.

ca, conj.: and.

imaṃ: see above.

sadevakaṃ: sadevaka-, Adj.: with the gods. The word deva-, N.m.: god, deity, with the prefix sa- (with, together) and suffix -ka- (the suffix for forming adjectives).
Acc.Sg.m. = sadevakaṃ.

List of Abbreviations

ko: see above.

dhammapadaṃ: dhammapada-, N.n.: verse on Dharma, a portion of the Dharma.
A compound of:

    dhamma-, N.m.: Buddha's Teaching. The Law. Derived from the verb dha-, to hold.

    Thus dhamma "holds the world together".

    pada-, N.n.: portion, verse.

Acc.Sg. = dhammapadaṃ.

sudesitaṃ: sudesita-, Adj.: well taught. The word desita-, Adj.: taught (a p.p. of the verb root dis-, to teach) with the prefix su- (well, good). Acc.Sg.n. = sudesitaṃ.

List of Abbreviations

kusalo: kusala-, Adj.: skilful. As a N.m.: a skilful man. Nom.Sg. = kusalo.

puppham: puppha-, N.n.: flower. Acc.Sg. = puppham.

iva, part.: like, as (another, more often used form of this word is va).

pacessati: will understand, will know, will realize. The verb is pacināti, to understand, to realize; but its different meaning is to gather, to collect, to pick. Both meanings are used here: understand and realize the world and the verses and pick the flowers. The verb root ci- (to collect, to accumulate) with the strengthening prefix pa-. 3.Sg.act.fut. = pacessati.

List of Abbreviations

    The two lines of this verse form two syntactically separated sentences.
    In the first one, the subject is the interrogative pronoun ko (who, nominative singular). The verb is vicessati (will investigate, 3rd person, singular, active, future tense). There are two paratactic objects: pathaviṃ (earth, accusative singular) with the attribute imaṃ (this, accusative singular) and yamalokaṃ (Yama's world, accusative singular) with two attributes, imaṃ (as above) and sadevakaṃ (with the gods, accusative singular). These two objects are connected by the conjunction ca (and).

    In the second sentence, the subjects is again the interrogative pronoun ko (as above). The verb is pacessati ("will understand" and "will pick", 3rd person, singular, active, future tense). The object is the noun dhammapadaṃ (verse on the Dharma, accusative singular) with one attribute, the adjective sudesitaṃ (well taught, accusative singular). There is a parenthetic clause, kusalo puppham iva (like a skilful [one] flowers). Here the noun-adjective kusalo (skilful [one], nominative singular) is the subject. The object is the noun puppham (flower, accusative singular). The verb is not in the clause itself, implying the verb pacessati from the main sentence. The particle iva (as, like) connects the clause to the sentence.


    A group of monks accompanied the Buddha to a certain village and then they all returned to the monastery. The monks started to talk about the trip. They paid close attention to the condition of the land: whether it was level or hilly, whether the soil was clayey or sandy etc.
    The Buddha visited them and when overheard the topic of their discussion, he told them to better concentrate on their own bodies. He said, that the earth is external and that they should strive to examine their own bodies and understand what they really are.

    He then added that by understanding one's own body we are also able to understand the whole world. We will be able to realize the Dharma, just as a skilful garland-maker makes the garlands.

Sentence pronunciation:

Sentence pronunciation

Word pronunciation: