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The eminent financial expert Liu Yan 劉宴 (716-780) is better known for his fiscal innovations than for his writings on Buddhism. Yet an essay of his on Buddhism, Daoism and Confucianism was found at Dunhuang and was even published by Makita Tairyō in 1961 in the Japanese volume in honour of Tsukamoto Zenryū. This essay was however known at least in part in seventeenth century Japan a couple of centuries before it was rediscovered at Dunhuang, as can be shown by a substantial quotation by a commentator of that period. The purpose of this paper therefore is to introduce this second source on Liu’s essay and to reflect on the status of the Dunhuang manuscript archive in relation to materials transmitted by other means.
Mongolian Buddhism has more than seven hundred years’ history. Mongolian collections of Buddhism were established from the thirteenth to the twentieth century. Mongolian Buddhist collections refer to the Mongolian Buddhist Canon and handwritten, block-printed texts. As many countries did, Mongolians adopted scripts, book producing technologies and translation methodology from other countries who previously imported Buddhism from India. However, every step of development of producing books and translating Buddhist texts of Mongols exemplified own specific contributions to Buddhist culture. In this paper, I will introduce panoramic view of the Mongolian collections. I will discuss some important characteristics of productions by reflecting upon important aspects, periodization of translations and multilingual texts. Actually, Mongolian Buddhist collections are rich and diverse, but they have not studied satisfactory by global scholars. Therefore, I expect, this paper will be helpful to those who interest in Mongolian Buddhism and collections.
In this paper I survey the extant Dunhuang Chinese manuscripts of the Youposai jie jing 優婆塞戒經 (Tno. 1488) from Dunhuang, a pivotal city on the Silk Road in medieval China, to try to determine how many Chinese manuscripts of this Buddhist text are preserved in Dunhuang corpus. I also study the colophons on these manuscripts to understand the purposes for which medieval Chinese Buddhists in Dunhuang copied this scripture.
As far as I know, there are 57 fragments of Dunhuang Chinese manuscripts of the Youposai jie jing. In addition, there are two fragments (Дx 9431 and Дx 14344) that may be from the Youposai jie jing, and one fragment, S. 8099, which has not yet been published. After studying the colophons from nine manuscripts, I learnt that the medieval Chinese Buddhists in Dunhuang patronized or copied this scripture to create blessings for the deceased father and praying for meeting Maitreya, neither of which is the main theme or is consistent with the contents of this scripture. This contradiction suggests interesting relationships between the medieval Chinese Buddhists’ aspirations for copying Buddhist scriptures and the contents of these scriptures.
After the Muslim conquest of East India in the 12th century, many Indian Buddhist monks sought refuge in Nepal and Tibet, bringing their sacred books (i.e. Sanskrit palm-leaf manuscripts) with them. These palm-leaf manuscripts were subsequently studied and translated by Indian, Nepalese and Tibetan scholars of that time. However, several hundred years later the Sanskrit manuscripts in Tibet were largely forgotten by the Tibetans. They lay covered in dust on book-shelves in libraries and monasteries, until the 1930s when Rāhula Sāṅkṛtyāyana “rediscovered” these Sanskrit manuscripts again in his three expeditions to Tibet. One of these Sanskrit manuscripts is Göttingen Cod.ms.sanscr.259, which Sāṅkṛtyāyana discovered in the Sakya monastery in 1936. It was subsequently brought back to India by Mr. Kanwal Krishna, one of Sāṅkṛtyāyana’s travel companion in his 1938 Tibet trip. Later it was bought by Prof. Gustav Roth in India and was brought to Germany in 1978. It is now preserved in the Niedersächsische Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek, Göttingen.
Göttingen Cod.ms.sanscr.259 is a multi-text Sanskrit manuscript. It contains Kambala’s Navaślokī(Aṣṭasāhasrikāprajñāpāramitāpiṇḍārtha) together with the auto-commentary, and a fragment of Abhayākaragupta’s Āmnāyamañjarī. Navaślokī is Kambala’s summary of the Aṣṭasāhasrikāprajñāpāramitā in 9 verses, which is extant in Sanskrit, Tibetan and Chinese. It is an important text for us to understand late Indian Buddhist philosophy, especially the so-called Yogācāra-Madhyamika school. The Sanskrit text of the Navaślokī has been published several times (root text at least two times, root text with commentary once), but none of the Sanskrit editions have made use of the Göttingen manuscript. The Sanskrit text of Navaślokī and its commentary as transmitted in Göttingen Cod.ms.sanscr.259 provides better readings in many places. In this paper I will provide a few better readings in order to improve upon the existing Sanskrit editions. In the future I hope to bring out a new critical edition of the Sanskrit, Tibetan and Chinese text of the Navaślokī (with commentary) based on all available sources.
I will investigate the available textual evidence and attempt to answer the following complicated research questions: What is the date of Kambala the author of the Navaślokī? Is Kambala the author of the Navaślokī the same as Kambala the author of the Ālokamālā? Is he Siddha Kambala? How many Kambalas are there?
The Navaślokī together with commentary has been translated into Chinese by Dharmapāla 法護 during the Song dynasty. This Chinese translation, which is included in the Taishō Tripitaka (Taishō no. 1516《聖佛母般若波羅蜜多九頌精義論》), has not been adequately studied before. After comparing the Chinese translation of the text with the Sanskrit original and its corresponding Tibetan translation, I find the quality of the Chinese translation to be quite good. I will comment on a few variant readings in the Chinese translation at the end of this paper.
This presentation will examine the relationship between Nai 93 and Tama 24—two manuscript fragments discovered at Dunhuang—and the Shōmangyō-gisho, a Buddhist text written in classical Chinese that has traditionally been attributed to Japan’s Prince Shōtoku (574–622). The presentation will elaborate on an article I published in the “Annotations” section of Manuscript Studies titled “An Investigation of the Relationship Between Prince Shōtoku’s Shōmangyō-gisho and Two Dunhuang Buddhist Manuscripts: A Debate over Originality and Canonical Value” (Fall 2017: 499-507). That 3,000-word article offered a brief introduction to the Japanese scholar Fujieda Akira’s discovery that the text attributed to Shōtoku clearly postdates and is strikingly similar to these Dunhuang manuscripts.
Fujieda’s research, some of which was produced in collaboration with Koizumi Enjun, caused heated scholarly debate by seeming to question the text’s value and led to the production of a substantial body of research in the late 1960s and 1970s seeking to clarify the relationship between the Shōmangyō-gisho and the Dunhuang manuscripts. These scholarly efforts were seen to be crucial in Shōtoku Studies because perceptions of the Shōmangyō-gisho’s originality have been central to its perceived value and canonical status. This research, which continues in the present, can be viewed as part of the broader search for the “true record,” a goal that has informed much of the scholarship on the Shōmangyō-gisho and two other Buddhist commentaries attributed to the prince. This presentation will elaborate on the Manuscript Studies article by focusing on how scholars who support the Shōmangyō-gisho’s canonical status have tried to respond to the key findings of Fujieda and Koizumi.
In recent years, there has been an increased interest in studying manuscripts as physical objects. As part of the new approach towards manuscripts, this essay focuses on the layout of the Dunhuang manuscripts and presents three aspects of it: the arrangement of titles, the design of lists of headings and the alternate use of two character sizes. The above-mentioned three aspects illustrate how texts were structured and presented visually and reveal how people utilised different skills to built clear structure within texts and denote the hierarchies of knowledge in medieval China. More importantly, this essay examines the medieval layout from a broader perspective and traces their origins in early manuscripts and later developments in printed books. Through breaking boundaries of different vehicles for textual transmission, this research grants us better understanding of the continuity and discontinuity between early manuscripts and medieval manuscripts, between manuscripts and printed books, and further, the role medieval layout played in Chinese book culture.
Hyphenation marks are not a device usually associated with Chinese texts because, as a rule, the script has no notational apparatus for marking word boundaries. While it is tempting to explain this with the predominantly monosyllabic nature of the earliest strata of written sources, this assumption fails to explain why such notation was not introduced in later periods when compound words became used in large number. In fact, modern Chinese writing still does not mark word boundaries, and neither does Japanese. When Western-style punctuation was introduced in the twentieth century, no notation was implemented for marking word boundaries, which is a clear sign that the users of the script did not think it was important.
Punctuation marks in general were not compulsory in Chinese manuscripts and we know of no attempts to standardize them, which is why there is a great deal of inconsistency in their use. Looking at the Dunhuang manuscripts, the majority of which were produced during the ninth-tenth centuries, we can say that punctuation marks were typically used in less formal contexts, in manuscripts intended for personal use or pragmatic purposes, as opposed to official copies of authoritative texts which were executed in a highly consistent manner. Despite the variety of functions punctuation marks had, marking bits of text split by a line break was usually not a necessity. Yet there is a handful of manuscripts from Dunhuang and Khara-khoto that contain examples of such marks, which have a function that is similar to the line-end hyphenation used in the West. This brief paper introduces such examples and attempts to outline the functionality of the mark. Purely for the sake of convenience, I will refer to them as “hyphenation marks,” although as we will see, despite some similarities, they also exhibit a number of discrepancies in comparison with those used in the West.
This study outlines some of the crucial aspects of research on the earliest surviving archive of paper preserved in the manuscripts found along the Silk Roads and dated to the first millennium. The objects in this study are Chinese, Tibetan, Uighur, Manichaean, Tokharian and Sogdian manuscripts drawn from the Stein Collection in the British Library in London; the Turfan collection in the Berlin Brandenburg Academy of Sciences (BBAW) and the Berlin State Library (BSL); the Pelliot collection in the Bibliothèque Nationale de France in Paris; and the Oldenburg collection in the Institute of Oriental Manuscripts in St. Petersburg. The examined manuscripts contain the earliest written on paper and surviving examples of literacy, artistic expression, scribal practice and recorded materials. Study of paper offer a story of the manuscript that critically supplements its content, revealing the untold details of its making. By using fiber analysis and the technological study of paper combined with codicological and textual information, research has aimed to explore the possibilities for dating these materials and fingerprinting their places of origin. The fact that many of Chinese manuscripts being studied (which are the oldest preserved and dated artefacts from Central Asia) are fixed in time by dates mentioned in colophons makes them valuable and reliable references for building a typology of paper, and for comparative study of any yet to be discovered papers from that region. Thus, this study to some extent also informs us about the technological transfer of local knowledge on papermaking spread along the Silk Roads (or Paper Roads).
Based upon colophons to manuscript editions of Buddhist texts found at Dunhuang and in Nara and Heian (710-1185) Japan, Yijing’s義淨 (635-713) translation of the Suvarṇa-prabhāsottama-sūtra 金光明最勝王經 (Z no. 158, T no. 665) was unquestionably one of the most important scriptures for a variety of this-worldly reasons. While several important studies of the Suvarṇaprabhāsottama-sūtra in Tibetan, Khotanese, and in Japan have been published (Nobel 1958, Skjærvø 2004, Ludvik 2007, Sango 2015), little to no attention has been awarded to how often and cautiously this scripture was copied in manuscript form across East Asia from the 8th to 13th centuries. First, using colophons I will survey evidence from Dunhuang of a special status for the Suvarṇaprabhāsottama. Next, I examine colophons and surviving ritual paraphernalia that speak to specific veneration of the Suvarṇaprabhāsottama in Japan. Then I investigate several rolls from the Matsuo shrine canon 松尾社一切經 that not only show how long after the scriptures were initially copied the Suvarṇaprabhāsottama seems to have been an object of reverence for this community, but also why we find kundoku 訓讀 readings for rolls 4 (with the most pure dhāraṇī chapter 最淨地陀羅尼品第六) and 8 (with chapters on Sarasvatī 大辯才天女品第十五之二, Śrīmahādevī (Lakṣmī) 大吉祥天女品第十六, Śrīmahādevī increasing benefits 大吉祥天女增長財物品第十七, the earth goddess Dŗḍhāya-mahāpṛthivīdevatayā 堅牢地神品第十八, Saṃjñāya (a Yakṣa general) 僧慎爾耶藥叉大將品第十九, and “Instructions concerning Divine Kings” 王法正論品第二十). Finally, I address the question: what can this evidence of hand-copying the Suvarṇaprabhāsottama-sūtra across East Asian tell us about the people who used and produced it?
The Shi moheyan lun 釋摩訶衍論 (T 1668; abbreviated as SML) is one of many extant commentaries on the Awakening of Mahāyāna Faith 大乘起信論 (T 1666). Like the Awakening of Mahāyāna Faith, the SML has held an important place in East Asian Buddhism, attested to by the existence of more than three hundred subcommentaries composed in China and Japan such as the Shi moheyan run ji 釋摩訶衍論記, and much modern research such as that done by Kashiwagi Hirō 栢木弘雄.
However, although the SML putatively ascribed to the great Indian philosopher Nāgārjuna (2-3rdcentury), the doubts regarding the text’s authorship can be seen expressed from as early as 779, when the Japanese monk Kaimyō 戒明 brought the SML from Tang China to Japan. The time of production accordingly has been questioned, and it is estimated to be around the 8th century by Mochizuki Shinko 望月信亨, Kim Jiyun金知姸, etc. Then, how the SML was distributed from the time of publishing to now? Are they the same texts? No clear answers have been provided until now.
The key to the solution of these problems is the consideration of the extant manuscripts and woodblock-printed book of the SML. The Japanese scholar Nasu Seiryu 那須政隆 have only paid attention to the manuscript, but it was just putting the woodblock-printed book of SML which is housed in the Narita成田 Library into print. Therefore, I would like to shed light on various other manuscripts and woodblock-printed books of SML.
First, I examine the manuscripts and woodblock-printed books of SML which were made by different times and places: Dunhuang 敦煌 manuscript in the Russian Academy of Sciences, Ishiyama-dera石山寺 manuscript, Fangshan shijing 房山石經 (N.1073), Tripitaka Koreana 高麗大藏經 (K1397) of Woljeongsa月精寺Temple, manuscripts in National Diet Library 國立國會圖書館, Todai-ji 東大寺 Library, Tokyo University 東京大學 Library, Omani University 大谷大學 Library, Minobusan University 身延山大學 Library, and Toyo University 東洋大學 Library. Based on them, I try to reveal what is the relation to these manuscripts and how the SML was brought from China to Japan through Korea.
Next, I make a comparison with of texts and I tabulate results which show their differences. More specifically, I centered around the manuscripts of Dunhuang which remains three pages (дх3855, дх3855, дх3855) and Ishiyama-dera which could check four pages (the first and last pages of the first and fifth volume respectively of the book 石山寺古經聚英) because they are presumed to be oldest. By comparing, I would like to verify that the texts of SML were distributed the same form or changed in process of propagation through East Asia.
There was no apparent record that when and where the SML was made, so it is the only way to infer the historical stream from the extant manuscripts. Therefore, I treat the manuscripts of the SML, and reveal how the SML was conveyed. Furthermore, by comparing and finding differences of them, I find modification and system of editions between them.
In 2010, three Polish scholars published A preliminary report on the Wanli Kanjur kept in the Jagiellonian Library, Kraków. The world began to know that Jagiellonian Library has an incomplete collection of Tibetan Kanjur printed in the Wanli period (1573-1620)，as well as many other Tibetan texts, manuscripts and xylographs. The library also possesses a huge collection of Chinese Buddhist literature, including the Yongle Northern Canon. There is a scripture that does not belong to Buddhist canon, or Daoist canon, or baojuan 寶卷. In June 2017, the author rediscovered one volume of Saddharmapuṇdarīka Sūtra in the Tangut language, which is particularly precious as it is the only extant copy in the world. Three volumes are still missing.
These volumes of the Tibetan Kanjur and the Yongle Northern Canon were obtained by a German scholar and collector named Eugen Pander. He got acquainted with the Tibetan Buddhist reincarnated Master Thu’u bkvan Khutugtu of Yonghe Temple in Beijing. Pander obtained over 700 artefacts and huge book collection including Tibetan texts. They were shipped to Berlin around 1889. They were placed in the Museum of Ethnography in Berlin and later moved to the State Library.
In 1943, the Allied Forces began to bomb Berlin and the Germans made an effort to hide their treasures. They transported 500 boxes of books from the State Library in Berlin to a castle Książ, and then to the Cistercian Monastery in Krzeszów. After WWII the region was on the Polish side of the border. All the treasures, including Beethoven’s manuscript of the “Ninth Symphony,” and Mozart’s manuscript of “Magic Flute,” were transferred as a deposit to the Jagiellonian Library in Kraków.
The author visited Jagiellon University twice in 2016 and 2017. He is planning to visit Poland again to examine its collection of Yongle Northern Canon and other Buddhist manuscripts.
Manuscript P.2824 contains a beautiful and complex cosmological chart which represents theBuddhist universe, and is certainly one of the most fascinating and interesting documents found among the thousands of manuscripts of the French collection of Dunhuang material acquired by Paul Pelliot at the beginning of the last century. With a captivating combination of iconography and text, this vertical scroll, entitled Chart of the Three Realms and the Nine Lands (Sanjie jiudi zhi tu 三界九地之圖), provides the practitioner with a schematic representation of Buddhist cosmology which is linked to specific scriptural sources. The latter accompany the illustrations and help explain of the multiple elements constituting the various planes of existence, which are arranged one on top of the other, in their tripartite division, along the central structure of Mount Sumeru, acting as an axis mundi.
In a recent paper which is the current reference work on the subject, Professor Françoise Wang-Toutain has analyzed each component of this chart providing an in-depth study of the cosmological aspects of this complex scroll. In the present paper I would like to point out a few additional philological and codicological considerations concerning a specific enigmatic text block which accompanies the lower section of the chart where the realm of the hells is represented. At first glance, the precise nature of this passage, composed of only thirteen columns, is extremely difficult to determine due to the puzzling sequential order of the various sentences which would seem to be mixed up in a somewhat chaotic way and result in an incomprehensible text. In the present analysis, I will argue that the enigmatic structure of this textual unit is the consequence of a macroscopic scribal error, linked not only to erroneous copying of the source-text itself but also to changes in its layout. By retracing the hypothetical copying phases, and reconstructing the textual layout of the source-manuscript, I will show how the scribe, produced a corrupt and incomprehensible inscription from a coherent source text. Furthermore, this analysis will lead us to more general considerations concerning scribal work, manuscript copying and production processes.
Medieval scholar monks in Japan produced a massive body of texts—sacred works or shōgyō. This paper focuses on one such monk, the Tōdaiji monk Sōshō (1202–1278), who produced the total of 351 bound books and 129 handscrolls. Sōshō produced most of his texts in the process of preparing for and participating in state-sponsored debate rituals (rongie). Modern scholars have tended to depict debate-related textual production primarily as a tool for upward social mobility, but I will reveal its intellectual significance. Sōshō copied various types of texts as different cognitive tools, appropriate for particular stages of learning. In addition, Sōshō’s texts were not only the means and products of his learning, but their circulation and transmission generated social relations such as a lineage. This paper will demonstrate the intellectual and socio-political importance of the production of shōgyō in medieval Japan.
This presentation will primarily address those Buddhist scriptures we encounter as part of the circuit of giving during the Guiyijun-rule (848– c. 1037), their contexts and the purposes for which they were created. While canonical scriptures tend to be dominant as votive gifts, a good part of the scriptures that were commissioned for donation to the local Buddhist establishments in Dunhuang were apocryphal in nature, something which reflects on the manner in which Buddhist beliefs and practices spread in China during the 10th century. A series of case-studies will serve as the basis for this presentation.
This paper examines several esoteric doctrinal texts printed on Mt. Kōya in the late 1270s by the shogunate official Adachi Yasumori (1231-1285). Conventional histories of Japanese xylography follow a developmental sequence from devotional printing by wealthy aristocrats in the classical (Heian) period, through limited educational printing by temples in the medieval period, to the arrival of widespread commercial printing in the early modern period. This paper examines the complex interplay of soteriological, practical, political, and commercial elements in one medieval printing project to both critique an “ends”-based typology of textual reproduction and further develop recent arguments on the role of esoteric Buddhism in coordinating medieval power centers.
The transmission of the verse text of Sa skya Paṇḍita’s Tshad ma rigs pa’i gter [of circa 1219] and the auto-commentary is shot through with a large number of fundamental text-critical problems. These problems already begin with the way in which the verse text was structured. Disciples of Sa skya Paṇḍita himself, the earliest commentators Ldong ston Shes rab dpal (circa 1260) and ‘U yug pa Rigs pa’i seng ge (ca. 1195-after 1267) wrote their studies of what I presume was the verse text in, respectively, thirteen and eight chapters. On the other hand, the printing blocks for the so-called Mongol xylograph (hor par ma) of the auto-commentary that were prepared in Dadu [more or less present-day Beijing] in 1284 had eleven chapters, which suggests that the verse text with which its editors were working had an identical number of chapters. Indeed, the auto-commentary in all likelihood included from the very beginning the verses of the verse text. Printing blocks for the verse text were carved during the fifteenth century and this gave rise to more problems of interpretation, as Glo bo Mkhan chen Bsod nams lhun grub (1456-1532) pointed out on a number of occasions in his 1482 study of the auto-commentary. The 1736 printing blocks of the verse text and auto-commentary that were carved in Sde dge make it quite clear that the original manuscripts of the verse text and the auto-commentary contained verses that had quite different filiations, thereby creating a disturbing dissonance between them.
The collected writings of literatus and lay Zen Master Yan Bing 顏丙 (d. 1212), which circulated throughout East Asia as the Discourse Record of Layman Ruru 如如居士語錄 in woodblock and manuscript editions up to seven volumes in length, comprises a remarkably wide range of genres including essays, verses, prayers, detailed ritual protocols, and records of his formal “seated” Zen teachings. Furthermore, several pieces from this collection were integrated into 13th-century liturgical texts, in ways which illuminate both the canonical works and their unacknowledged manuscript source.
The Ritual Amplification of the Diamond Sūtra (X1494), an important antecedent to the “precious volumes” (baojuan 寶卷) genre composed by Zongjing 宗鏡 in 1242, incorporates an entire essay by Yan as well as about twenty of his verses. Here the essay is transformed from an argument to be read and discussed into a liturgy to be recited, while the 16th-century commentary on the Ritual Amplification by Juelian 覺連 (X467) provides invaluable insights into Yan’s work as well, offering a detailed exposition of the text which explains the essentials of his argument as well as his many allusions and references.
In the Assembled Sages Discourse Record of Master Deyin 德因 (X1277), which bears a preface dated 1287 and is primarily a collection of liturgical texts for ritual specialists, we find a lengthy Ritual Protocol for Freeing Life 放生文 taken verbatim from Yan’s manuscript, as well as several prayers for the dead which Deyin has modified. I conclude that the Discourse Record of Layman Ruru was an important source for the development of lay Buddhist piety and devotion during the Southern Song and Yuan, and that more investigation is likely to reveal that Yan’s influence extends even further than is currently known.
Japan’s earliest literary anthology Man’yōshū 萬葉集 (Collection of Ten Thousand Leaves) has nearly twenty different extant manuscripts preserved by various libraries. The most distinctive feature of the Man’yōshū lies in the combined use of Chinese characters in both purely phonographic (man’yōgana) and logographic functions. The variety of orthography in the anthology and among the different manuscripts causes great difficulties in the literary interpretation of the Man’yōshū. Buddhism is the most important religious source of the Man’yōshū, and this paper intends to use the example of a manuscript from chapter six of Man’yōshū to discuss the possibility that the ideas of the Tathāgatagarbha sūtra had been introduced to Japan at that time and how it impacted Japanese monks. At the same time, I also hope to put forward my own opinions on the interpretation and application of the manuscript in Sino-Japanese cultural contexts.