Two: Description of the Metres


2.16 Old Gīti

This appears to be the earliest of the bar metres, and indeed, is most probably a transitional metre between mattācchandas and gaṇacchandas metres. There are two structures to the metre: the first is the normal form; the second is an extended form, which after the word break, restarts with a full gaṇa, thus:

Normal structure:

−¦¦⏔−¦⏓,−⏓¦⏔−¦¦⏔−¦× (x 2)

Extended structure:

−¦¦⏔−¦⏓,⏔−¦⏔−¦¦⏔−¦× (x 2)

In the 2nd and 6th gaṇas the pattern ⏔− sometimes occurs, but −⏑⏑ is very rare in any gaṇa. The opening gaṇa quite frequently looks like this: ⏑− ; in this case we have to count the initial syllable as heavy (pādādigaru) to make up the mattā count (cf. 2.10 above). In the normal form we sometimes find that the 4th gaṇa looks like this: , ; in this case we have to count the light syllable, which occurs at the end of the first half of the pādayuga as heavy (pādantagaru), as in the measure metres. With the extended form cf. the extended Tuṭṭhubha, 2.7 above.

Examples: Mettāsutta Khp 9; Tuvaṭakasutta Sn IV:14; Vangīsa's gāthās (part) Th 1242-1245; Upālisutta MN:56

Example from Tuvaṭakasutta (vs 922-3):   

−−¦⏑−⏑¦−−¦,−¦⏑⏑−¦⏑−⏑¦⏑⏑−¦−   pādantagaru
“Cakkhūhi neva lolassa, gāmakathāya āvarayĕ sotaṁ,

−¦⏑−⏑¦−−¦⏑,⏑⏑⏑¦−−¦⏑−⏑¦−−¦−   pādādigaru + resolution
rase ca nānugijjheyya, na ca mamāyetha kiñci lokasmiṁ.

−−¦⏑⏑−¦−−¦⏑,⏑⏑−¦−−¦⏑⏑⏑⏑¦⏑⏑−¦−   extended + resolution
Phassena yadā phuṭṭhassa paridevaṁ bhikkhu na karĕyya kuhiñci,

−¦⏑−⏑¦−−¦⏑,−⏑¦−⏑⏑¦⏑−⏑¦−−¦−   pādādigaru + normal break
bhavañ-ca nābhijappeyya, bheravesu ca na sampavedheyya.