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Chapter XI
Takshasila. Legends. The Four Great Topes.

Seven days’ journey from this to the east brought the travellers to the kingdom of Takshasila,1 which means “the severed head” in the language of China. Here, when Buddha was a Bodhisattva, he gave away his head to a man;2 and from this circumstance the kingdom got its name.

Going on further for two days to the east, they came to the place where the Bodhisattva threw down his body to feed a starving tigress.2 In these two places also large topes have been built, both adorned with layers of all the precious substances. The kings, ministers, and peoples of the kingdoms around vie with one another in making offerings at them. The trains of those who come to scatter flowers and light lamps at them never cease. The nations of those quarters all those (and the other two mentioned before) “the four great topes.”


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