There are several notable things about this page, namely:

  • the original paper is slightly torn at the edge
  • inside an ornamental red square at the bottom of the right margin is the number 116, which is the folio number
  • at the top of the left-hand margin Jambūdvīpa° sūtra 116 is the abbreviated title of the work Jambū-dvīpa-prajñapti, along with the folio number, which therefore occurs twice on the page
  • above line 1, in the left-hand margin by line 12 and below the central red circle are words the scribe originally missed out that have been added by a later reader.

Colours are used for emphasis. Red is used to write the:

  • symbol cha in lines 2, 4 and in the last line, which is used at the end of chapters or texts
  • date and what remains of the colophon on line 5
  • final benediction formula on the last line.

Yellow pigment is used as an eraser in such manuscripts. Here it has been used extensively on lines 6 to 11.

Just visible under the yellow pigment is some text in red ink. Some syllables can be guessed, but on the whole it is no longer legible. The person who used yellow pigment deliberately wanted to hide some information. In this case, the deletion relates to the monks or lay people involved in copying the text. Such deletions are quite common.

The three red circles along the central horizontal plane are symbolic reminders of the way in which manuscripts were bound when they were on palm-leaf. Here the central circle is in a lozenge-shaped blank space. Strings through one or more holes were used to thread together the loose folios so the reader could turn them over easily. The circles are in the places where the holes would once have been.


The elaborate script is the Jaina Devanāgarī script, in a form which recalls calligraphy. It is used for writing many Indian languages, here for Prakrit.

There are a few notable features of this script, namely:

  • it is an old type in the way the sounds e and o are notated when used with a consonant, known as pṛṣṭhamātrā script
  • the red vertical lines within the text, which, though they are used to divide the long sentences into smaller parts, are not necessarily punctuation marks.