Did Indian kings provide for the children of ascetics?

Apparently the Greek historian Porphyry said that in India, kings provided support for the children of ascetics (samaṇa). I’m not aware of any such custom attested in Indian sources. Am I missing something?


Kumarakassapa was the son of a bhikkhuni and was named Kassapa the Prince because he was raised by a member of the royal family.
The mother was ordained not knowing she was pregnant.


Huh, okay.

The specifics are a little different. This seems to be referring not to an occasional adoption but to a regular practice of material support of such children. It also extends to children they had before ordaining. A kind of state child-support for children of ascetics.

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