Two: Description of the Metres

 

2.17 Gīti, Ariyā (Āryā), and their derivatives

In the gaṇacchandas metres in the Pāḷi canon, there are two structures to the pādayuga (pair of lines), they are:

Gaṇacchandas 1st pādayuga:

      1          2           3           4           5           6          7        8 

⏔⏔¦¦⏔⏔¦¦⏔⏔¦¦⏔⏔¦×

Gaṇacchandas 2nd pādayuga:

      1          2           3           4           5       6        7        8 

⏔⏔¦¦⏔⏔¦¦⏔⏔¦⏑¦⏔⏔¦×

Note that −⏑⏑ is very rarely found in any gaṇa.

The only difference between the two pādayugas lies in the 6th gaṇa.

Ariyā, which is the most common metre in this class, has the first pādayuga described above followed by the second, this gives a mattā count of 30 + 27.

Examples: Isidāsī's gāthās Thī 400 - 447, and Sumedhā's gāthās Thī 448 -522

Example Thī 458-9:   

−⏑⏑¦⏑−⏑¦⏑⏑−¦⏑−⏑,¦−⏑⏑¦⏑−⏑¦−−¦−
Kiṁ bhavagatena abhinanditena, kāyakalinā asārena? Note that this pādayuga is a variation (vipulā), lacking the expected word break after the 3rd gaṇa.01

⏑⏑−¦−⏑⏑¦−−¦¦⏑⏑−¦⏑⏑−¦⏑¦−−¦−
Bhavataṇhāya nirodhā, anujānatha pabbajissāmi.

−−¦−−¦−−¦¦⏑−⏑¦−−¦⏑−⏑¦−−¦−
Buddhānaṁ uppādo, vivajjito akkhaṇo khaṇo laddho,

−−¦⏑−⏑¦−−¦¦−−¦−−¦⏑¦−−¦−
sīlāni brahmacariyaṁ yāvajjīvaṁ na dūseyyaṁ.

 

The next three metres are much less common:

Gīti has the first pādayuga repeated to make up a verse,

mattā = 30 + 30.

Example: Paripuṇṇaka's gāthā Th 91:   

⏑⏑−¦⏑−⏑¦⏑⏑−¦¦−−¦−−¦⏑−⏑¦⏑⏑−¦−
Na tathāmataṁ satarasaṁ suddhannaṁ yaṁ mayajja paribhuttaṁ,

⏑⏑⏑⏑¦−−¦⏑⏑−¦⏑−⏑,¦−−¦⏑−⏑¦−−¦−
aparimitādassina Gotamena Buddhena desito Dhammo. Again this line is a variation.02

 

Uggīti has the second pādayuga followed by the first, mattā = 27 + 30.

Example: the last of Vijitasena's gāthās Th 359:   

⏑⏑−−⏑−−−¦¦⏑⏑−¦−−¦⏑¦−−¦−
Satiyā taṁ nibhandhissaṁ, This line as it stands reads as Siloka, a not uncommon phenomena in gaṇacchandas verses. If we read Satiyā ta' nibhandhissaṁ, that would give a correct Uggīti line.03 payatatto vo damessāmi,

−⏑⏑¦⏑−⏑¦−−¦¦⏑⏑−¦−−¦⏑−⏑¦−−¦−
viriyadhuraniggahīto, na-y-ito dūraṁ gamissase citta!

 

Upagīti has the second pādayuga repeated, mattā = 27 + 27.

Example: Gotama's gāthās 587, 588, & 591, the latter being mixed with Siloka:   

−−¦⏑⏑−¦−−¦¦−−¦⏑⏑−¦⏑¦−−¦−
Mittaṁ idha kalyāṇaṁ, sikkhāvipulaṁ samādānaṁ,

−−¦−⏑⏑¦−−¦¦−−¦⏑⏑−¦⏑¦⏑⏑−¦−
sussāsā ca garūnaṁ: etaṁ samaṇassa paṭirūpaṁ. (Th 588)

 

Other gaṇacchandas variations, including pādayugas with a full last gaṇa (giving a mattā count of 32), are not found in the canon.