Leslie Grey's Jātaka Concordance


I notice that most of Sutta Central’s Jātaka texts (with the exception of the long ones at the very end) don’t as yet supply any links to parallels in non-Pali sources.

Any Jātaka fans here who are interested in locating parallels may be pleased to know that the Pali Text Society’s Concordance of Buddhist Birth Stories by Leslie Grey (1994) is now available for borrowing at Internet Archive.

[To the mods: I’m not sure if I’m posting this announcement in the right place. Feel free to move it if it’s better suited to some other forum].

Edit: my original description of the book contained errors which I’ve now corrected.


Thanks for sharing this!

Can you say a little bit more about it? As I understand the word concordance, it’s an index of every use of every word in a book (like the bible). Is that what this is, but for the Jātaka verses?

I’m afraid I can’t say much at the moment. Having discovered the book only last night I’m still trying to figure it out, but I attach three reviews, by Gombrich, Scherer and Gethin.

That’s what the word originally meant, but Grey’s is a concordance of stories, topics and genres (based on the Aarne-Thompson-Uther taxonomy of types of folk tale). As such the aim is rather more modest than would be the case with a lexical concordance.

As you’ll see in the reviews there are quite a few flaws in the work, but since little else is available in English it will just have to do for now.

Gombrich.pdf (155.3 KB)
Scherer.pdf (43.1 KB)
Gethin.pdf (209.9 KB)


Do let us know what you learn.

As you noted, SC is thin on Jataka parallels. In fact, our original data is based on Akanuma, which was for the 4 nikayas only. Then I went through and did the Vinaya—not a small job! Ayya Vimala did the Dhammapada, also not small. But most of the remaining texts have only partial parallels. I’m lo-key working on improving the Sutta Nipata in the background. But definitely we are interested to expand on any of these less well covered texts.

It’d be nice if anyone finds a set of Jataka parallels in a more usable form, though!