Asokan Edict – Delhi Inscription


Delhi Pillar (Shivalik)


devānaṁpiye piyadasi lājā hevaṁ āhā ye atikaṁtaṁ

aṁtalaṁ lājāne husa hevaṁ ichisu kathaṁ jane

dhaṁmavaḍhiyā vāḍheya nocujane anulupāyā dhaṁmavaḍhiyā

vaḍhithā etaṁ devānaṁpiye piyadasi lājā hevaṁ āhā esame

huthā atākaṁtaṁ ca aṁtalaṁ hevaṁ ichisu lājāne katha jane

anulupāyā dhaṁmavaḍhiyā vaḍheyāti nocajane anulupāyā

dhaṁmavaḍhiyā vaḍhithā se kina sujane anupaṭipajeyā

kina sujane anulupāyā dhaṁmavaḍhiyā vaḍheyāti kina sūkāni

abhyuṁ nāmayehaṁ dhaṁmavaḍhiyāti etaṁ devānaṁpiye piyadasi lājā hevaṁ

āhā esame huthā dhaṁmasāvānāni sāvāpāyāmi dhaṁmānusathini

anusisāmi etaṁ jane sutu anupaṭīpajīsati abhyuṁ namisati


(A partial portion of the entire inscription)




Thus spoke king Devanampiya Piyadasi : “Kings of the olden time have gone to heaven under these very desires. How then among mankind may religion (or growth in grace) be increased? Yea, through the conversion of the humbly-born shall religion increase”
Thus spoke king Devanampiya Piyadasi : “The present moment and the past have departed under the same ardent hopes. How by the conversion of the royal-born may religion be increased? Through the conversion of the lowly-born if religion thus increaseth, by how much (more) through the conviction of the high-born, and their conversion, shall religion increase? Among whomsoever. the name of God resteth (?) verily this is religion, (or verily virtue shall there increase).”
Thus spoke king Devanampiya Piyadasi : ” Wherefore from this very hour I have caused religious discourses to be preached; I have appointed religious observances that mankind having listened. Thereto shall be brought to follow in the right path and give glory unto God’” (Agni ?)
(This is a very old translation – Late 19th Century. Hence may not be entirely correct )


1. Corpus Inscriptionum Indicarum, Vol I – Inscription of Asoka, Alexander Cunningham, 1877


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