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Mahanama, more than a Monk

Gudrun Pinte (UGent)
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Abstract
It has long been accepted that King Mahanama of Sri Lanka was involved in a Sinhalese mission to China in 428 ad. However, a closer look at the sources on which this claim is based reveals a new perspective on the identity of Mahanama. Data from the Pali chronicle, the Culavamsa, when cross-examined with references found in the Chinese historical records Jinshu, Songshu, Liangshu and Nanshi, and with the travel reports of Wang Xuance and Xuanzang, not only reveal that Mahanama was an international ambassador while he was still a prince, but also show that he was the envoy instrumental in securing the construction of a rest-house for Sinhalese pilgrims near Bodhgaya.
Keywords
China, India, Sri Lanka, fifth century, envoys, Buddhist history

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Citation

Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:

Chicago
Pinte, Gudrun. 2011. “Mahanama, More Than a Monk.” South Asia-journal of South Asian Studies 34 (2): 175–187.
APA
Pinte, Gudrun. (2011). Mahanama, more than a Monk. SOUTH ASIA-JOURNAL OF SOUTH ASIAN STUDIES, 34(2), 175–187.
Vancouver
1.
Pinte G. Mahanama, more than a Monk. SOUTH ASIA-JOURNAL OF SOUTH ASIAN STUDIES. 2011;34(2):175–87.
MLA
Pinte, Gudrun. “Mahanama, More Than a Monk.” SOUTH ASIA-JOURNAL OF SOUTH ASIAN STUDIES 34.2 (2011): 175–187. Print.
@article{1860567,
  abstract     = {It has long been accepted that King Mahanama of Sri Lanka was involved in a Sinhalese mission to China in 428 ad. However, a closer look at the sources on which this claim is based reveals a new perspective on the identity of Mahanama. Data from the Pali chronicle, the Culavamsa, when cross-examined with references found in the Chinese historical records Jinshu, Songshu, Liangshu and Nanshi, and with the travel reports of Wang Xuance and Xuanzang, not only reveal that Mahanama was an international ambassador while he was still a prince, but also show that he was the envoy instrumental in securing the construction of a rest-house for Sinhalese pilgrims near Bodhgaya.},
  author       = {Pinte, Gudrun},
  issn         = {0085-6401},
  journal      = {SOUTH ASIA-JOURNAL OF SOUTH ASIAN STUDIES},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {2},
  pages        = {175--187},
  title        = {Mahanama, more than a Monk},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00856401.2011.582670},
  volume       = {34},
  year         = {2011},
}

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