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Abstract

This article assesses five proposals for the development of Tibetic zl, which has modern reflexes including Lhasa Tibetan /_(ⁿ)d/. My assessment considers on their ability to account for zl’s modern reflexes, their plausibility from the perspective of phonetics, and their congruence with typological observations. I conclude that, at present, Bialek (2018)’s proposal is the most plausible. However, future research may produce comparative evidence that support Gong (2016)’s proposal. At the end, I outline a methodology for investigating the role of functional load in Tibetic consonant cluster mergers.

Open Access
In: Cahiers de Linguistique Asie Orientale
Author:

Abstract

In the accounts of the Mahāvīra’s life in the first suyakkhaṃdha of the Āyāra(ṃga) and the Jinacaritra several turning points are mentioned. As will be shown, the periods between these turning points are delimited in a highly exact way, which accounts for the intercalary months. However, the modern translators have failed to recognize the terms involved. And so have the authors of the texts themselves and the subsequent copyists, which in the case of Āyāra I becomes clear from an interpolation and in that of the Jinacaritra from the introduction of an alternative system of dating the main events in the Mahāvīra’s life. The latter system is also found in the second suyakkhaṃdha of the Āyāra, which contains an account of the Mahāvīra’s life which, as will be shown, might well have been based on the one in the Jinacaritra. The exact calculations lend the biography in Āyāra I the character of a handbook providing strict rules for prospective monks. The author of the Jinacaritra, who was unaware of the function of the calculations, produced instead a veritable hagiography. It will be argued that while the phenomenon of intercalarity must have been widely known, knowledge of the calculations seems to have been passed on mainly in royal administrative circles involved in taxation and revenue collection. This is a world from which the ascetic monks, however learned, must have been far removed. This might explain the misunderstandings visible in the Jinacaritra and, with it, Āyāra II. The authors of what is by general agreement the earliest version, in Āyāra I, seem instead to have been familiar with the work carried out in these administrative centres.

Open Access
In: Indo-Iranian Journal

Abstract

The Śrīmālādevīsiṁhanādanirdeśasūtra is preserved in toto in one Tibetan and two Chinese translations, in addition to which we have access to a fragmentary Sanskrit manuscript and a considerable number of Sanskrit quotations, contributing to a sizable amount of the text now being available in Sanskrit. The present contribution takes as its impetus a recent contribution on the sūtra and its ideas about tathāgatagarbha, offering a survey of the state of the field of study of the text in its Indian context, and several suggestions for improved understandings.

Open Access
In: Indo-Iranian Journal
Author:

Abstract

Recent methods have been proposed to produce automatic rhyme annotators for large rhymed corpora. These methods, such as Baley (2022b) greatly reduce the cost of annotating rhymed material, allowing historical linguists to focus on the analysis of the rhyme patterns. However, evidence for the quality of those annotations has been anecdotal, consisting of a handful of individual poem case studies. This paper proposes to address the issue: first, we discuss previously proposed metrics that evaluate the quality of an annotator’s output against a ground-truth annotation (List, Hill, and Foster; 2019) and we propose an alternative metric that is better suited to the task. Then, sampling from Baley’s published annotated corpus and re-annotating it by hand, we use the sample to demonstrate the lacunae in the original approach and show how to fix them. Finally, the hand-annotated sample and source code are published as additional data, so that other researchers can compare the performance of their own annotators.

Open Access
In: Cahiers de Linguistique Asie Orientale

Abstract

This study presents a detailed analysis of the narrative of Goyama and the ascetics of Mount Aṭṭhāvaya in the Āvaśyaka Cūrṇi, including text and translation. By identifying a range of themes, intertexts and allusions in the narrative, a variety of Jain perspectives on the nature of asceticism are uncovered. Topics covered include the Āvaśyaka Cūrṇi as “commentary”, the Āvaśyaka Niryukti background to the Āvaśyaka Cūrṇi narrative, some possible Śaiva allusions in the narrative, the significance of Goyama’s physical appearance, Goyama’s explanation of the canonical story of Puṃḍarīa, and Goyama’s power of bestowing limitless food. In addition to the narrative told in the Āvaśyaka Cūrṇi, its earliest metrical version in the Uttarādhyayana Niryukti is discussed and translated as well.

Open Access
In: Indo-Iranian Journal

Abstract

The Buddhist Sanskrit Saṃghāṭa-sūtra includes several longer or shorter passages in verse, mostly ślokas. Many though not all of these verse passages also appear in metrical form in the Khotanese version, which makes use of all three of the metres known from the longest Old Khotanese poem, the Book of Zambasta. The aim of the present article is to analyse these metrical passages in order to determine to what extent the treatment of the metres conforms to the practice of the Book of Zambasta. The relevant passages are therefore presented with a detailed metrical analysis as well as an English translation and brief commentary.

Open Access
In: Indo-Iranian Journal
Author:

Abstract

Because most Sino-Tibetan languages with a literary tradition use Indic derived scripts and those that do not are each sui generis, there are advantages to transcribing these languages also along Indic lines. In particular, this article proposes an Indological transcription for Middle Chinese.

Open Access
In: Cahiers de Linguistique Asie Orientale

Abstract

The paper focuses on the 12th chapter of the *Saddharmaparikathā, a Buddhist homileticians’ guidebook containing sample sermons, dealing with the topic of gambling (dyūta). I edit, translate, and discuss the chapter with an introduction that includes a short overview of gambling in Sanskrit literature at large. The anonymous author is dismissive of gambling in all its forms, whether it is practised for material gain, for mere pleasure, and even if studied as an art. In spite of its exiguity, his discussion of the topic is, as far as we are aware, the most comprehensive in classical Buddhist literature.

Open Access
In: Indo-Iranian Journal

Abstract

The Lalitavistara is one of the most influential hagiographies of the Buddha. It has been known in Sanskrit since the early days of modern studies of Buddhism, but was long available only in inadequate editions. That has now changed with the publication of the edition of K. Hokazono, now complete in three volumes. The present paper discusses something of the history of the study of the text, Hokazono’s edition, and another recent book by G. Ducoeur that deals with the text, as well as touching on a contribution by Xi He on the poetics of the text. It includes a concordance of a recent translation from Tibetan published by the 84000 project, aligning its sections with the Sanskrit editions of Lefmann and Hokazono.

Open Access
In: Indo-Iranian Journal

Abstract

Mandarin Chinese allows implicit, non-canonical, and quantity-objects. The first type is seen in Wǒ zhǎo-guò-le ‘Lit.: I looked for’, which means ‘I have looked for some entity that is known to the interlocutors’. The second type is seen in Lìlì qiē-le nà bǎ dà dāo ‘Lit.: Lili cut that big knife’, which means that Lili cut something with that big knife. The third type is seen in zǒu-le yī lǐ ‘walked one mile’. From the perspective of the interaction of yòu ‘again’ with different kinds of objects, this paper shows that while implicit objects and quantity-objects behave like explicit canonical objects, non-canonical objects do not behave like canonical ones. This paper provides new evidence to support Zhang Niina Ning’s (2018, Natural Language and Linguistic Theory 36: 1395–1437) claim that a non-canonical object restricts the meaning of the verb, rather than saturates any argument of the verb. It also supports the internal argument analysis of post-verbal quantity expressions.

Open Access
In: Cahiers de Linguistique Asie Orientale