2 BURMA, PAST AND PRESENT.
end, religion is at an end." The third division, Abhi-dhamma, or pre-eminent truths, was addressed by Gautama to the Brahmas and D was, and contains seven sections, not in the form of sermons, but specifying terms and doctrines of dogmatic philosophy, with definitions and explanations.
The Baideng is divided into four parts, one, however, of which has been lost. It is the great Pali work on mathematics and astronomy, or rather astrology.
Of secular literature there are works on subjects such as chronological history, medicine, topography, ballads, and romances ; the latter two of which are, to the credit of the Burmese, free from the gross-ness and indelicacy of similar productions in India. I will here extract a tale from the Thoo-dhamma-tsarie, translated by the late Colonel Sparks, which will serve to illustrate the general character of the latter kind of literature.
THE DISPUTED WIFE.
In the olden time, during the era of Thermaydha,* in the country of Kaytoomatee, the son of a certain man who was possessed of countless wealth, and the daughter of another rich man named Thanga, were
* The sixteenth Buddh, who lived 90,000 years, and was eighty-eight cubits in stature.* The sixteenth Buddh, who lived 90,000 years, and was eighty-eight cubits in stature.