which are encyclopaedic texts, containing accounts of the different branches
of knowledge pursued by the Jaina monks.
In the field of non-canonical literature, commentaries to the canonical texts
form the most significant part. The oldest of these, called Nijjuttis (Niryuktis),
may be traced as far back as the time of Bhadrabahu. These were later
developed into elaborate Bhashyas and Churnis written in Prakrit, and Tikas
and Vrittis written in Sanskrit.
One of the most famous commentators was Haribhadra who obtained
great celebrity as a scholar and a poet. He lived in the second half of the ninth
century AD and is reputed to have composed 1444 works. Three other well-
known commentators, Santisuri, Devendragani and Abhayadeva lived in the
11th century AD.
Legends and fables form quite a prominent feature of the Jaina literature and
there are many independent works containing single stories or collections.
Some of these are mentioned below:
1. The Kalakacharya-kathanaka is looked upon as very old and gives
a legendary account of the conquest of Ujjayini by the Sakas.
2. The Uttama-charitra-kathanaka is a story containing episodes full
of remarkable adventures.
3,4.The Champaka-sreshthikathanaka and Pala-Gopala-kathanaka
were both written by Jinakirtisuri in the 15th century AD.
5. The Samyaktvakaumudi describes how a merchant and his eight
wives attained samyaktva (perfection) in religion.
6. The Kathakosa is a rich mine of stories some of which have travelled
beyond the boundaries of India. It contains the Jaina version of the
Nala-Damayanti episode of the Mahabharata.
7. The Antarakatha-samgraha by Rajasekhara (14th century AD).
8. The Kathamahodadhi by Somachandra (15th century AD).
9. The Katharatnakara of Hemavijaya (16th century AD.)