A short collection of eighty stories, in eight vaggas, containing solemn utterances of the Buddha, made on special occasions. The Udāna proper, comprising the Buddha's utterances, is mostly in verse, in ordinary metres (Sloka, Tristubh, Jagatī), seldom in prose (E.g., iii.10; viii.1, 3, 4). Each Udāna is accompanied by a prose account of the circumstances in which it was uttered.
The book forms the third division of the Khudda-kanikāya (DA.i.17; but see p.15, where it is the seventh).
Udāna is also the name of a portion of the Pitakas in their arrangement according to matter (anga). Thus divided, into this category fall eighty-two suttas, containing verses uttered in a state of joy (DA.i.23-4; see also UdA. pp.2-3).
The prose-and-verse stories of the Udāna seem to have formed the model for the Dhammapada Commentary (See Bud. Legends, i.28).
The Udāna is also the source of twelve stories of the same Commentary and contains parallels for three others. About one-third of the Udāna is embodied in these stories. See, ibid., i.47-8, for details.