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Eighty-one years before the Buddhist Era, Suddhodana's queen, Maha.gif (845 bytes)ma.gif (845 bytes)ya.gif (845 bytes) Devi.gif (57 bytes), was pregnant for the first time. At the approach of delivery, which was close to ten months' she decided as was the then custom of married women, to give birth to the child in Devadaha her own hometown. Thus on the fullmoon day of the Vesa.gif (845 bytes)kha lunar month, she left Kapilavatthu in the morning together with her retinue. It was almost noon when she arrived at a grove called Lumbini.gif (57 bytes), midway between Kapilavatthu and Devadaha. Here she stopped to have a rest under the shade of a Sa.gif (845 bytes)la tree where she was suddenly in labour and before long gave birth, while standing and holding an overhanging branch of the Sala tree, an infant boy. Her labour was without any difficulty whatever. When this was made known to King Suddhodana, he had his queen, together with the infant son, return to the city of Kapilavatthu.
002.jpg (29912 bytes) Five days after that, the king arranged a naming ceremony for his son in which the name 'Siddhattha' (literally 'having the wish fulfilled') was chosen as token of his wish (for a son) having been fulfilled. During the ceremony 108 distinguished Brahmins were invited to have a meal in the palace and also to determine the characteristics and destiny of the royal infant. Of the 108 Brahmins, all but one, having seen all the major and minor characteristics of a great man on the royal infant, predicted that should the infant choose the secular life when he grew up, he would be a Universal King or ruler of the world, but in case he should prefer a religious life instead, he would certainly become the greatest religious founder of the world. However, there was, as mentioned above, only one as the exception since he appeared to have an exceptional pre-cognitive power. He was called Kondannn.gif (72 bytes)nnn.gif (72 bytes)a, who prephesied confidently, and thus unconditionally, that the infant was to lead a religious life and as such to become the foremost religious teacher of the world.

Seven days after giving birth to her infant son, queen Maha.gif (845 bytes)ma.gif (845 bytes)ya.gif (845 bytes) passed away. King Suddhodana then placed Siddhattha his infant son under the care of Maha.gif (845 bytes)paja.gif (845 bytes)pati, the queen's younger sister or the infant son's aunt, who later became his second queen.

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When Siddhattha grew up and reached his childhood, the king, following the royal tradition of the times, had his son educated, under the most famous teacher available by the name of Visvamitta, in all the martial and administrative arts and disciplines befitting one, whom he intended was to become a world-ruler, as predicted by the 107 Brahmins. At the age of 15, Siddhattha was able to absorb whatever had been taught him by his able teacher. In a display of his prowess in archery amidst his relatives, he was regarded as unequalled. Even in other arts and branches of knowledge he came out the top of other competitors, --to the rapt amazement of all who witnessed the events.
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At the age of 16 Siddhattha was married, through his royal father's arrangement, to Bimba.gif (845 bytes) Yasodhara.gif (845 bytes), the princess daughter of Devadaha city. The marriage was arranged and performed in the city of Kapilavatthu, in the midst of witnesses who were relatives of both sides.
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After the marriage he was nominated as heir to the throne of Kapilavatthu. Then his father had three palatial residences built for the prince's comfort and pleasure, one for each season, in all of which he was kept surrounded by whatever entertainments and pleasures he wished for. This until 12 years later, when he was 29 and his princess consort was pregnant.

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