Any suggestions!

Fri Jan 25 07:36:43 UTC 2002

Dear colleagues,
what a difference a day makes!
Yesterday we seemed without a clue how to explain "sitdham".
Now look how far we got - and with practically nothing to go on!
That's what makes the difference between "manuscriptology" and
magic. In the dark days we might have wasted our time with
tedious inquiries. Someone might have come along wanting to
know the name of the manuscript/text we just took as the starting
point of an erudite discourse. Perhaps someone else would have
insisted on going into its manuscript tradition: Is it confined to a
particular region? Assuming the ms. on hand was written in
(northern) Nagari, would there be traditions in other scripts,
perhaps even of South Indian provenance? Could those traditions
have influenced one another? Could the palaeographical
particularities of the exemplar have found their way into the copy?
What does the "tdha" conjunct actually look like? ... Pedestrian /
pedantic questions! (And who's to tell what's worse?)

The way we approach things now, it's as if you actually took a
look over the scribe's shoulder as he struggles with orthography,
the axioms of phonetics - or perhaps an innate defect of speech
inadvertently creeping into his hand time and again? (Who knows,
there might be some potential in that line, too!)

We may rightfully indulge in mutual admiration! Can't wait to see
the result in print!


Reinhold Gruenendahl


Dr. Reinhold Gruenendahl
Niedersaechsische Staats- und Universitaetsbibliothek
Fachreferat sued- und suedostasiatische Philologien
(Dept. of Indology)

37070 Goettingen, Germany
Tel (+49) (0)5 51 / 39 52 83
Fax (+49) (0)5 51 / 39 23 61
gruenen at

In English:

GRETIL - Goettingen Register of Electronic Texts in Indian Languages

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