The book is intended to provide the student of philogy with a
convenient handbook of early prakrit of the Asokan edicts to facilitate the study of the
Asokan dialects by them.
Asoka text and glossary in two volumes by Alfred C. Woolner, who taught
Sanskrit and Prakrit in 1920 in Punjab, was first published in 1924 before the publication
of Dr. E. Hultzsch?s epoch making studies in Asokan edicts included in Corpus
Woolner?s work has the advantage over Hultzsch?s work as it
can be used as a convenient handbook of early Prakrit. The purpose of Woller was to place
the Text and Glossary of the Asokan edicts in the hands of students in manner so as to
facilitate the study of the Asokan dialects by them.
The students. of Indian history will find in Woolner?s book the
ready means of checking various translations, of the documents of the third century B.C.
If, however, there are difficulties of interpretations he will find in Woolner?s book
every Asokan form as well as all the passages where they occur with reference to most of
the literature on disputed forms.
The two parts of Woolner?s book have been bound in the present
reprinted edition. The first part of the book contains introduction, outline of Asokan
grammar and text, while the second part is entirely devoted to glossary.
A work of great erudition, Woolner?s book Asoka Text and Glossary will be of great use to all advanced students of ancient history of India and Indology,
and particularly by the students of Prakrit. The reprinted edition will meet this want,
and encourage them to study afresh the works of an Indian King who resolved to forswear
war in order to govern in the light of own law only, the Dharma or Law of Piety laid down
by the Enlightened one.