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Two Old Uighur manuscripts housed in the National Museum of China have remained unidentified and unedited since their discovery by Huang Wenbi in 1928–30. A philological study based on examination of the originals is given in this paper. The first manuscript, a fragmentary codex with seven folios, can be identified as an Old Uighur transcription of the dhāraṇī text belonging to the Sanskrit Mahāpratisarā Mahāvidyārājñī. It may have served as a handbook for Uighur Buddhist monks or practitioners to recite the dhāraṇī in public ritual or private practice. The reconstructed Vorlage demonstrates a close relationship with the Tibetan and Tangut versions. A group of blockprint fragments in the Pelliot Collection from Dunhuang can also be identified as coming from the same text. The second manuscript, with 30 lines of text, belongs to a thus far unknown Old Uighur Buddhist treatise related to the qualities conducive to the attainment of ‘entrance into the stream’ (srotaāpattyaṅga) in Buddhist spiritual practice. It is likely a commentary composed by Uighur Buddhists.

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The paper places the history of the Dunhuang caves and the Buddhist material found in them in the broader context of Asian history. It deals with the role of the Yuezhi (Yueh-chih) in the introduction of Buddhism, further with the role of Khotan in the spread of the Buddhist literature. After the conquest of Khotan by the Muslims the Buddhist monks fled to the region of Dunhuang. The paper ends with discussing the threat by the Tanguts and the walling up of the famous library of Dunhuang.

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The fragment we are publishing here is preserved in the Chinese Academy of Cultural Heritage (the former China Institute of Cultural Relics). It is the 53rd leaf of an Uigur manuscript that contains the beginning of an unknown commentary to the Yuanjue jing. Other leaves of the same manuscript of the Hedin Collection in Stockholm were studied by K. Kudara in 1992.

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ABSTRACT

In this paper the authors edit two Old Uigur fragments that recently became accessible from Dunhuang. Both are parts of the unknown commentary on the Yuanjue jing of which already some other remnants were edited.

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Abstract

In this paper, the author presents a fragment of a translation of the Abidharmakośabhāṣya into Old Uighur preserved at the National Library of China, Beijing. This leaf can be connected to the Abidharmakośabhāṣya fragments preserved at the Ethnographic Museum in Stockholm and studied by Shōgaito Masahiro. Through an examination of the size, form, handwriting, etc., we conclude that all the Abidharmakośabhāṣya texts preserved in Stockholm, Kyoto, Beijing, Lanzhou, and Hangzhou belong to one and the same manuscript.

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The main feature of the extant Old Uyghur manuscripts is their fragmentary state of preservation and the predominant lack of dating. Catalogues and editions of the Old Uyghur fragments reveal a great diversity in the size and format of the discovered manuscript folios and the fragments from them. This study aims to promote the reconstruction of the scope of the Old Uyghur book forms from preserved fragments as an important part of the Old Uyghur manuscript culture. Which book forms were utilized, who participated in their production, and where? Studies on the papers and inks employed are obtainable. This study focuses on the Buddhist scrolls of the Säkiz Yükmäk Yaruk.

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The paper aims at summarising the progress that has been made after World War II in collecting, editing, translating, and analysing the Buddhist contributions to classical Sanskrit literature. It demonstrates that the systematic search for manuscripts has brought to light many unknown works, among them veritable highlights of their respective genres, such as the play Lokānanda by Candragomin, the Jātakamālās by Saṅghasena, Haribhaṭṭa, and Gopadatta, a great number of outstanding hymns by Mātṛceṭa and his successors, and verse epics such as the Kapphiṇābhyudaya by Śivasvāmin, and the two late poems by Sarvarakṣita, namely the Mahāsaṃvartanīkathā and the Maṇicūḍajātaka. It is noteworthy that in many cases the oldest or even only specimens of various genres were composed by Buddhist authors.

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In this paper the authors edit two Old Uigur fragments that have recently become accessible from Dunhuang. The first is part of a poem on the famous story of King Bimbasāra and his wife Vaidehī that was popular in Pure Land Buddhism. The second is a kind of a commentary that uses Chinese phrases in original Chinese script.

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This paper offers a description, analysis and identification of some Dunhuang and Turfan manuscripts in the Pelliot Collection at the Bibliothèque nationale de France, the Stein Collection at the British Library and the Turfan Chinese Collection at the Berlin–Brandenburgische Akademie der Wissenschaften. The contents of these manuscripts were previously unidentified, especially due to the fragmentary state of some of the texts.

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For over a century many Buddhist texts in Pali have been translated into English, the four main Nikāyas at least twice. Significant improvements have been made in regard to English translations of Pali texts. This paper provides five case studies that illustrate the problems and complexities involved in translating Pali texts. Examples are taken from four suttas of the Aṅguttara Nikāya. Various issues are addressed using textual and contextualised analyses. I attempt to offer solutions to some problems related to translating the Pali through different approaches, including style, philology, history, Buddhist thought and inter-religious relation.

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