Free Online Translations

  • Bhante Sujato: Full translation of the Therīgāthā on SuttaCentral.
  • Caroline Rhys Davies, ed. Psalms of the Early Buddhists: I. Psalms of the Sisters available here.
  • Ven. Kiribathgoda Gnanananda Thero: translation The Voice of Enlightened Nuns available on
  • Anagarika Mahendra: Theragāthāpāḷi: Book of Verses of Elder Bhikkhunis : a Contempory Translation, available from
  • Ayya Kusuma Theri: Annotated translation of selected poems available here.

Biographies of Theris

  • Ayya Tathālokā Theri has an exhaustive facebook album with drawings of the enlightened nuns by Gayan Chanuka Widanapathirana, and links to original texts, commentaries and other great resources. View here.
  • Anandajoti Bhikkhu: a translation of the Anguttara commentary, retelling the lives of the foremost elder nuns and their teachings. Contains an embedded reading of the text with introductory comments from the translator. Read the stories here.
  • Ayya Tathālokā Theri has written a fascinating article, The Amazing Transformations of Arahant Theri Uppalavanna available here.
  • Ayya Tathālokā Theri, an analysis of the Theri Apadana, the commentaries that provide the biographies of the enlightened nuns, “Lasting Inspiration: A Look into the Guiding and Determining Mental and Emotional States of Liberated Arahant Women in Their Path of Practice and its Fulfillment as Expressed in the Sacred Biographies of the Therī Apadāna”. Available here.
  • Bhante Sujato: “Stories of Bhadda The other First Bhikkhuni” in his book, White Bones Red Rot Black Snakes available here.
  • Anandajoti Bhikkhu has compiled exhaustive list of all bhikkhunis (not just the foremost Theris) mentioned in the Pali suttas here.
  • Ayya Sudhamma has a website with the bhikkhunis’ verses, their stories, recordings in Pali and English, and references for further reading.

Articles About the Therīgāthā

  • Fumi Yao: an article about the story of Dharmadinna, with translation from the Tibetan, Dharmadinnā Becomes a Nun: A Story of Ordination by Messenger from the Mūlasarvāstivāda Vinaya available here
  • Vijitha Rajapakse: Therigatha: A Revaluation, available in a variety of formats here.
  • Olivia Nona (Sarana): “Learning from the Therīgāthā: What Liberated the Venerable Nun Uttamā.” available in the The Sati Journal: Vol 1, no. 1 (2011)
  • Bhikkhu Analyo: Beautiful Eyes Seen with Insight as Bereft of Beauty – Subhā Therī and Her Male Counterpart in the Ekottarika, available in the Sati Journal Vol 2. No 1(2013)
  • Shraddha Upadhayay uses an intersectional Indian feminist approach to look at the Theirgatha in her article “Therigatha: The First Writings Of Our Ancestresses.” available here.
  • Bhikkhu Analyo: an article “Chos sbyin gyi mdo –Bhikkhunī Dhammadinnā Proves Her Wisdom” available here.
  • Gisela Krey: an article about the two chief bhikhuni disciples, “On Women as Teachers in Early Buddhism: Dhammadinnā and Khemā” available here.
  • Bhante Sujato: Dreams of Bhadda, an imaginative retelling of the fascinating story of Baddha Kunḍalakesa available here.

Video and Audio

  • Check out all the Therigatha Festival videos on our youtube channel. Make sure you subscribe and enable notifications so you don’t miss our future videos.

Video from Dhammadharini Monastery with portraits of the Arahant Bhikkhunis by artist Gayan Chanuka Widanapathirana and chanting of the Recollection of the Foremost Arahant Bhikkhunis verses by Mel Zeki courtesy of Aloka Vihara Forest Monastery.

Monastics from Empty Cloud Monastery chant Aggasāvikā Bhikkhunī verses, describing the foremost Bhikkhunis at the time of the Buddha and their special qualities. The chant is a combination of text from the Mahāvaccha Sutta MN 73 and the lists of foremost Bhikkhunis found in the Pañcama Vagga AN 1.235–247 

Ayya Sudhamma chants the Nuns Words for the Buddha from the Therīgāthā in Pali and English.

  • The Aloka Vihara community chant an English version of the verses of Recollecting the Foremost Arahant Bhikkhunis. Listen to the audio here.

Therīgāthā and Controversies

  • Ayya Sudhamma‘s article From Lioness Roars to Purrs – A Review of The First Free Women by Matty Weingast (Therigatha), available here.
  • Therigatha Comparison Website: a site that examines the importance of accurate translations of scared texts in response to recent published versions.
  • Akaliko Bhikkhu‘s article A Buddhist Literary Scandal, the Curious Case of the First Free Women, available here.

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