In modern Tibetan history, it is fairly well known that in 1913 the 13th Dalai Lama appointed Lungshar Dorje Tsegyal as chaperon for four Tibetan boys to travel to Britain for a modern education. Less well studied are the letters the 13th Dalai Lama wrote for the King, Queen and ministers in Britain, which he had Lungshar take with him to London and which asserted the ‘rang btsan’ of Tibet, which today translates to ‘independence’. Through a comparative analysis of the original letters written in Tibetan and the letters that the 13th Dalai Lama sent to other countries, I will show how the Lungshar delegation was an important component of the overall diplomatic strategy designed by the 13th Dalai Lama after the demise of the Qing Dynasty. Based on comparative study between the Tibetan letters and the British translations, I will show that officials of British India, at the beginning of the 20th century, did not necessarily use ‘independence’ as the fixed parallel translation of ‘rang btsan’. This first analysis of the original Tibetan language letters sheds new light on the conceptual discrepancies in modern terminologies between the Tibetan and English languages that could have influenced the negotiations that took place between Tibet and Britain.
JampaSamtenNotes on the Thirteenth Dalai Lama’s Confidential Letter to the Tsar of RussiaTibet Journal: Proceedings of the International Seminar on Tibetan and Himalayan Studies2010DharamshalaThe Library of Tibetan Works and Archives357370
KobayashiR.小林亮介OkamotoTakashi岡本隆司Chibetto no seiji teki chii to shimula kaigi: hon’yaku gainen no kentō wo chūshin niチベットの政治的地位とシムラ会議：翻訳概念の検討を中心に [The Political Status of Tibet and the Simla Conference: the Translated Concepts]Sōshuken no sekaishi: tōzai ajia no kindai to hon’yaku gainen 宗主権の世界史：東西アジアの近代と翻訳概念 [The History of Suzerainty: Asian Modernities and Translations]2014NagoyaUniversity of Nagoya Press
OkamotoTakashi岡本隆司SadahiroIshikawa石川禎浩NaokiHazama狹間直樹‘Shuken’ no seisei to ‘sōshuken’: 20 seiki shotō no Chūgoku to Mongoru, Chibetto.「主権」の生成と「宗主権」: 20 世紀初頭の中国とチベット・モンゴル」[‘Suzerainty’ and the Origins of ‘Sovereignty’ in Early 20th Century China with Special Reference to Tibet and Mongolia]Kindai higashi ajia ni okeru hon’yaku gainen no tenkai 近代東アジアにおける翻訳概念の展開2013KyotoInstitute for Research in Humanities, Kyōto University262290[The Development of Translated Concepts in East Asia during the Modern Age]
SchuhD.Grundlagen tibetischer Siegelkunde: Eine Untersuchung über tibetische Siegelaufschriften in ʾPhags pa Schrift [Foundations of Tibetan Seal Studies: An investigation of Tibetan seal inscriptions in ʾPhags pa Script]1981Sankt AugustinVGH Wissenschaftsverlag
ShirasuJ.白須浄真ShirasuJ.白須浄真Dalai lama 13 sei ni yoru Meiji Tennō heno jōsho kennōhin shazetsu no tenmatsu ダライラマ13世による明治天皇への上書・献納品謝絶の顛末 [The 13th Dalai Lama’s letters and gifts to Emperor Meiji and his refusal to accept them]Ōtani Kōzui to kokusai seiji shakai: Chibetto tankentai shingai kakumei 大谷光瑞と国際政治社会：チベット・探検隊・辛亥革命 [Ōtani Kōzui and International Political Society: Tibet Expeditions and the Xinhai Revolution]2011TokyoBensei325372
Snelling (1993: 32–42). Kobayashi (2016) also briefly explains Dorzhiev’s life and his achievement based on recent research and materials about him.
Martin2014: 19–21; l/p&s/11/64 P. 3937 Foreign Office to India Office on 8 August 1913.
Before Lungshar left India in May1913through consultation with Gould the India Office had already tried to make Lungshar leave for Tibet immediately after arriving in London (FO535/16 No. 223 the Marquess of Crewe to Government of India).