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

bahum pi ce saṃhitaṃ bhāsamāno na takkaro hoti naro pamatto

gopo va gāvo gaṇayaṃ paresaṃ na bhāgavā sāmaññassa hoti

(DhP 19)


Even if he recites a lot of scriptures, but does not act accordingly, the negligent man.
He is like a cowherd who counts others' cows. He does not share the [blessings of] monkshood.

Sentence Structure:

List of Abbreviations

bahum  pi     ce saṃhitaṃ bhāsamāno na   tak+karo       hoti        naro        pamatto
|            |        |       |               |            |       |       |            |              |               |

Adj.m. part. part. N.m.      Adj.m.     neg. Pron. N.m.  V.act.in.     N.m.      Adj.m.

Acc.Sg.  |       |  Acc.Sg.    Nom.Sg.      |      |  Nom.Sg. 3.Sg.pres. Nom.Sg. Nom.Sg.

|            |        |       |________|             |      |____|            |              |_________|

|_______|____|________|                     |_____|_________|                       |

       |___|        |                                             |___|                                  |

          |______|                                                |                                     |


List of Abbreviations

gopo       va     gāvo gaṇayaṃ  paresaṃ  na   bhāgavā sāmaññassa   hoti
|               |         |           |              |        |           |              |               |

N.m.      part.  N.m.   Adj.m.    Adj.m.  neg.  Adj.m.       N.n.      V.act.in.

Nom.Sg.   |   Acc.Pl. Nom.Sg.  Gen.Pl.   |     Nom.Sg.  Gen.Sg.   3.Sg.pres.

|               |         |______|              |        |______|________|________|

|               |               |___________|                   |________|        |

|________|______________|                                     |_________|

       |____|                                                                        |


Vocabulary and Grammar:

List of Abbreviations

bahum: bahu-, Adj.: much, many, a lot. Acc.Sg.m. = bahum.

pi, part.: also, as well, even (often spelled api).

ce, part.: if.

saṃhitaṃ: saṃhita-, Adj.: connected, joined, settled. A p.p. of the verb dhā- (put) with the prefix saṃ- (together). As a N.m. = the Buddhist texts. Acc.Sg. = saṃhitaṃ.

bhāsamāno: bhāsamāna-, Adj.: speaking. It is a med.pr.p. of the verb bhās- (to speak). Nom.Sg.m. = bhāsamāno.

List of Abbreviations

na, neg.: not.

takkaro: takkara-, N.m.: acting accordingly (lit. "doer of that"). A compound of:
    tat-, Pron.n.: that.

    kara-, N.m.: doer. Derived from the verb kar- (to do).

The form takkara is due to the euphonic combination (tat + kara = takkara).

Nom.Sg. = takkaro.

hoti, V.: is. The verb bhū- (to be). 3.Sg.act.in.pres. = hoti.

naro: nara-, N.m.: man, person. Nom.Sg. = naro.

List of Abbreviations

pamatto: pamatta-, Adj.: negligent, careless. A p.p. of the verb pamajjati (to be careless, to neglect). The verb root is mad- (to be intoxicated) with the strengthening prefix pa-. Nom.Sg.m. = pamatto.

gopo: gopa-, N.m.: cowherd. Nom.Sg. = gopo.

va, part.: as. like.

gāvo: go-, N.m.: cow. Acc.Pl. = gāvo.

gaṇayaṃ: gaṇayant-, Adj.: counting. It is an a.pr.p. of the verb gaṇ- (to count).
Nom.Sg.m. = gaṇayaṃ.

List of Abbreviations

paresaṃ: para-, Adj.: other, different. Gen.Pl.m. = paresaṃ (of others).

bhāgavā: bhāgavant-, Adj.m.: partaking of, having a share. The word bhāga-, N.m.: share, with a possessive suffix vant-. Nom.Sg. = bhāgavā.

sāmaññassa: sāmañña-, N.n.: monkshood. An abstract from samaṇa-, N.m.: monk, recluse. Gen.Sg. = sāmaññassa.

List of Abbreviations  

    The first segment of this sentence is bahum pi ce saṃhitaṃ bhāsamāno (even if [he] recites a lot of scriptures). The subject of this sentence is omitted, implying a personal pronoun (which comes in the last clause). The verb is bhāsamāno (which is the medium present participle in nominative singular). The object is the word saṃhitaṃ (scripture, accusative singular) with its attribute bahum (a lot, accusative singular). There are two particles pi (even) and ce (if).

    Next comes the clause na takkaro hoti (he is not a "doer-of-that"). Here the subject is the noun takkaro ("doer-of-that", nominative singular) and the verb is hoti (is, 3rd person, singular, active, indicative, present tense) negated by the negative particle na (not).

    The last clause on the first line is naro pamatto (negligent man). We can take this phrase as a separate clause (as we do here). In this case it is a isolated subject naro (man, nominative singular) with its attribute pamatto (negligent, nominative singular). We could also understand it as the subject of the whole sentence.

    On the second line we have two more clauses. The first one is gopo va gāvo gaṇayaṃ paresaṃ (like a cowherd, counting others' cows). The subject is gopo (cowherd, nominative singular) and as the verb serves the active present participle gaṇayaṃ (counting, nominative singular). The object is the word gāvo (cows, accusative plural) with its attribute paresaṃ (others', genitive plural). The particle va (like) connects this clause to the main sentence.

    Last part is the sentence na bhāgavā sāmaññassa hoti ([he] is not a sharer of the monkshood). As the subject is again implied the pronoun he, meaning the "negligent man" from the first line. The verb is hoti (is, 3rd person, singular, active, indicative, present tense) negated by the negative particle na (not). The object is the word bhāgavā (sharer, "shareholder", nominative singular) with its attribute sāmaññassa (of monkshood, genitive singular).


    The teacher must act according to his own words. A monk, who talks nice, true words, but his acts are not in accordance with them, does not really share the blessings of monk's life. He is like a hireling, doing work for others.

    A cowherd is poor, he usually does not have his own cows, and he just takes others' cows out to the pasture. He does not have a real profit out of his actions. In the same sense, the monk who only talks about the Buddha's teachings, but does not put them into practice himself, does not reap the fruit thereof, is just like the cowherd. Thus he neglects his own practice and as we will soon hear in coming verses, the negligence is not a good path to take.

Sentence pronunciation:

Sentence pronunciation

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