Overview of Pali Canonical Texts and their commentaries

Length in pages of the PTS editions of the text is as follows, with the overall length being ~12800 pages, equivalent to around 30 million characters:

VINAYA PIṬAKA: 1511 pages:

Mahāvagga and Cūlavagga: 668
Suttavibhaṅga: 617
Parivāra: 226


Dīgha Nikāya: 904
Majjhima Nikāya: 1092
Saṃyutta Nikāya: 1686 (admittedly a somewhat arbitrary figure, as it depends on how the repetitions of the manuscript are expanded)
Aṅguttara Nikāya: 1840
(Total for first four Nikāyas: 5522)

Khuddaka Nikāya: ~3116:
Khuddakapāṭha: 9
Dhammapada: 119
Udāna: 94
Itivuttaka: 124
Suttanipāta: 223
Vimānavatthu: 135
Petavatthu: 95
Theragāthā: 115
Therīgāthā: 51
Jātaka: with commentary 3105; canonical verses, perhaps a fifth of this, ~600
Niddesa: Mahā-Niddesa 510, Culla-Niddesa 287: total 797
Paṭisambhidāmagga: 442
Apadāna: 615
Buddhavaṃsa: 102
Cariyāpiṭaka: 37


Dhammasaṅgaṇī: 264
Vibhaṅga: 436
Dhātukathā: 113
Puggalapaññatti: 74
Kathāvatthu: 628
Yamaka: 593
Paṭṭhāna: 549 (but the Pali Publication Board edition indicates ~2800 for the fuller text of the Burmese editions, which are themselves abbreviated).


In the following, the canonical text title is followed by that of its commentary, and the title of the PTS translation of this commentary, where it exists. In the system adapted by the Pali Text Society’s Pali-English Dictionary, the abbreviation for commentary for a text is the text abbreviation followed by A., e.g.: DA. = commentary on Dīgha Nikāya. The commentary to the Dhammasaṅgaṇī also has the abbreviation Asl. In the system of the Critical Pali Dictionary (adopted in the new Pali Text Society’s Dictionary of Pāli), there are separate abbreviations for the names of many of the commentaries (given below); others add -a or -ṭ, for a commentary (aṭṭhakathā) or sub-commentary (ṭikā) respectively.
Vinaya Piṭaka; Samantapāsādikā (Sp), and Kaṅkhāvitaraṇī (Kkh) (on Pāṭimokkha)

Sutta Piṭaka:

Dīgha Nikāya; Sumaṅgalavilāsinī (Sv)
Majjhima Nikāya; Papañcasūdanī (Ps)
Saṃyutta Nikāya; Sāratthappakāsinī (Spk)
Aṅguttara Nikāya; Manorathapūraṇī (Mp)
Khuddaka Nikāya:

Khuddakapāṭha; Paramatthajotikā (I) (PjI)
Dhammapada; Dhammapadaṭṭhakathā (Dh-a); Buddhist Legends
Udāna; Paramatthadīpanī (I) (Ud-a); Udāna Commentary Translation, I and II
Itivuttaka; Paramatthadīpanī (II) (It-a)
Suttanipāta; Paramatthajotikā (II) (Sn-a)
Vimānavatthu; Paramatthadīpanī (III) (Vv-a); Vimāna Stories
Petavatthu; Paramatthadīpanī (IV) (Pv-a); Peta Stories
Theragāthā; Paramatthdīpanī (V) (Th-a)
Therīgāthā; Paramatthadīpanī (VI) (Thī-a)
Jātaka; Jātakatthavaṇṇanā (JA); Stories of the Buddha’s Former Births
Niddesa; Saddhammapajjotikā (Nidd-a)
Paṭisambhidāmagga; Saddhammappakāsinī (Paṭis-a)
Apadāna; Visuddhajanavilāsinī (Ap-a)
Buddhavaṃsa; Madhuratthavilāsinī (Bv-a); Clarifier of Sweet Meaning
Cariyāpiṭaka; Paramatthadīpanī (VII) (Cp-a)
Dhammasaṅgaṇī; Aṭṭhasālinī (As or Dhs-a); The Expositor
Vibhaga; Sammohavinodan (Vibh-a); Dispeller of Delusion
Dhātukathā; Pañcappakaraṇatthakathā (Dhātuk-a)
Puggalapaññatti; Pañcappakaraṇatthakathā (Pp-a)
Kathāvatthu; Pañcappakaraṇatthakathā (Kv-a); Debates Commentary
Yamaka; Pañcappakaraṇatthakathā (Yam-a)
Paṭṭhāna; Pañcappakaraṇatthakathā (Paṭṭh-a)

The only sub-commentaries published so far are the Līnattha-pakāsinī, on the Dīgha Nikāya, part of the Aṅguttara-nikāya-ṭkā, and the Abhidhammatthavibhāvinī-ṭīkā (Abhi-s-mh-ṭ : on this, see entry on Later Pali Literature below). There are no English translations of these.

For details of editions of the texts, and their translations, where available, see website of the Pali Text Society: http://www.palitext.com  ‘Original texts in Pali’ and ‘Translations’

Also, published by the Buddhist Publication Society, Kandy, Sri Lanka (available from Wisdom Books: see UKABS page of web-sites of publishers for information), are:

Translations of three Suttas of the Dīgha Nikāya, and their commentaries:
The All-embracing Net of Views: The Brahmajāla Sutta and its Commentaries, tr. Bhikkhu Bodhi, 1992.

The Discourse on the Fruits of Recluseship: The Sāmaññaphala Sutta and Its Commentaries, tr. Bhikkhu Bodhi, 1989.

The Great Discourse on Causation: The Mahānidāna Sutta and its Commentaries, tr. Bhikkhu Bodhi, 1984.

Translations of the first Sutta of the Majjhima Nikāya, and its commentary:
The Discourse on the Root of Existence: The Mūlapariyāya Sutta and Its Commentaries, tr. Bhikkhu Bodhi, 1992.

Other translations on the web:

Access to Insight: Readings in Theravada Buddhism, Tipitaka section:

Mahindarama- Suttanta Pitaka – many translations from the Pali Canon, from unspecified sources, including the whole Majjhima Nikāya: http://mahindaramatemple.com/e-tipitaka/suttanta.htm

BuddhaSutra.com (mainly Theravāda Sutras, but some Mahāyāna, all listed alphabetically by title): http://www.buddhasutra.com

The Questions of King Milinda, T.W. Rhys Davids translation: http://www.sacred-texts.com/bud/milinda.htm

Common Buddhist Text – an anthology of texts from Theravāda, Mahāyāna and Vajrayāna Buddhism: http://www.undv.org/vesak2015/en/cbt.php

‘The Suttanta on the Marks’ (of the Buddha; on Samatha Trust website): http://samatha.org/sites/default/files/Suttanta_On_The_Marks.pdf