One of the fifteen books of the Khuddaka Nikāya, generally mentioned first in this list (E.g., DA.i.17).

Its rightful claim to be included as part of the Tipitaka was disputed both by the Dīghabhānakas and the Majjhimabhānakas (DA.i.15). It is generally acknowledged (for a discussion see Law, Pāli Lit., i.7f; 34f) that the work is of later composition and that it contains extracts from earlier works. It may have been composed in Ceylon, and it is significant that its first mention as a canonical book should occur only in the commentaries. It is not mentioned even in the Milindapañha.

The book consists of nine sections on texts:

and five suttas:

- all found elsewhere in the canon.

According to the Commentary the book derives its name from the first four texts, which are shorter than the remaining five. KhpA.13.

The Commentary was written by Buddhaghosa. See also Gv.59, 68.

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