[INDOLOGY] A Bacchanal in Heaven (Publication Announcement)
slaje at kabelmail.de
Tue Sep 29 08:04:07 EDT 2015
Lovers of Sanskrit *Kāvya* and those with a research interest in the
social, cultural and literary history of Kashmir might be interested in the
*Bacchanal im Himmel und andere Proben aus Maṅkha*
(*A Bacchanal in Heaven and Additional Specimens from Maṅkha*)
The volume contains five Sargas (2-3, 14-15, 25) of Maṅkha’s
*Śrīkaṇṭhacarita* (c. AD 1144), re-edited in Sanskrit and accompanied
by an annotated
German translation on facing pages. Four of the five chapters have been
translated here for the first time.
Sarga 2 (“Connoisseurs, Ignoramuses, Enviers”) contains Maṅkha’s criticism
of literature and of literati with revealing remarks on plagiarism as it
seems to have been rampant in his days.
Sarga 3 (“About myself”) starts with a description of pre-Islamic Kashmir
and Śrīnagar as the poet’s home town. An autobiographical sketch follows,
pertaining to the careers and religious affiliations of his father and his
three brothers (Śaiva, Vaiṣṇava, Buddhist). In this chapter, Maṅkha also
discloses the authorial intention for his composition.
Sarga 14 (“A Bacchanal in Heaven”) depicts a drinking session of the
Immortals with a view to tuning the participants in on lovemaking. The
divine performance of the latter is masterfully portrayed in Sarga 15. Both
chapters abound in minute, sometimes frivolous, but never tasteless
details. They bear potential relevance for our knowledge of the material
and social culture of wine drinking in medieval Kashmir.
Sarga 25 („Author Reading“), translated for the second time after
Kreyenborg’s first attempt (1930), contains, in the poet’s own words, a
description of his public reading of the *Śrīkaṇṭhacarita* to a circle of
handpicked connoisseurs and critics, present among them also Maṅkha’s
teacher Ruyyaka and his junior contemporary Kalhaṇa.
Walter Slaje, *Bacchanal im Himmel und andere Proben aus Maṅkha*. [AWL.
Veröffentlichungen der Indologischen Kommission. 3.] Mainz: Harrassowitz
2015. ISBN 978-3-447-10456-2.
1) Harrassowitz Publishers
NB: Now also available from Amazon.de:
Jonarāja’s *Rājataraṅgiṇī *(“Kingship in Kashmir“):
Prof. Dr. Walter Slaje
Ego ex animi mei sententia spondeo ac polliceor
studia humanitatis impigro labore culturum et provecturum
non sordidi lucri causa nec ad vanam captandam gloriam,
sed quo magis veritas propagetur et lux eius, qua salus
humani generis continetur, clarius effulgeat.
Vindobonae, die XXI. mensis Novembris MCMLXXXIII.
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