. Dheeraj Publications . Meerut, India
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This book of thirty-one stories is surprising. It starts with a life of Gautama Buddha, includes fables from the Jatakas and Aesop, and advertises itself as Panchatantra. Tales I have encountered as part of the Jatakas include The Golden Deer (29), The Golden Goose (36), The Great Monkey King (42), and The Noble Stag (61). The Aesopic stories I had not seen in Indian traditions include DLS (20), BW (126), MSA (132), and TH (137). Of course there are familiar stories from among those known as part of the Panchatantra, like The Lion and the Cow (55) and The Woodpecker, the Tortoise, and the Antelope (106). Thus Panchatantra seems to be understood here as a generic name for fables. The opening short section on the Buddha has him recouonting the path of dharma thorugh stories of his previous births. These have come to be called Panchatantra, some 547 of which are still in circulation today (7). The second story tells of King Sivi, who gave his eyes to a blind man and was rewarded by the God Sakka with a new pair of eyes. DLS features a merchant who deliberately, removes his goods from a donkey's back, puts a lion's skin on the donkey, and lets him loose in the fields to eat (20). One group of plucky farmers bands together and kills the lion. There is a crucial misprint of leer for deer on 30. Again, there is looses for loses on 41.