In the first centuries of the common era, the Buddhist dination tradition came to China. It was based on several disciplinary (vinaya) texts translated from an Indian language. Gradually，one tradition-the Dharmaguptaka tradition - became the prominent one. In disciplinary texts, as well as in philosophical treatises, an accurate understanding of the technical terminology is essential. Only then can we understand what disciplinary rules the early communities, both Indian and Chinese，relied on. However，when studying these early Chinese disciplinary texts, one is constantly confronted with technical terms the exact meaning of which remains more or less obscure. It is the aim of this paper to propose a methodology that enables us, on the one hand，to obtain a precise identification of technical terms, and on the other hand，to gain a better understanding of their etymology and content. As we will see，this is only possible through a thorough comparison of all extant vinaya texts, Indian as well as Chinese. Doing so，many technical terms can be identified，such as the commonly known 白衣 (agarika, a lay person )，but also various obscure terms, such as [初法] 應捨 [僧伽婆尸沙] ([an immediate rule，a samghavesesa] that has to be given up) or 象牙杙 (hastidanta, a pin in the wall). The methodology also provides a clearer insight into how Indian and Chinese Buddhists interpreted basic vinaya terms, such as parajika, samghavasesa, or pacittika.