Name of Tibet

Peter Wyzlic pwyzlic at UNI-BONN.DE
Wed Aug 9 11:08:43 UTC 2006

On Tue, 8 Aug 2006 23:40:03 -0700
  Jonathan Silk <silk at HUMNET.UCLA.EDU> wrote:

>  In reading the latest incarnation of the Wiki entry for Tibet, I
>  found the statement "The Sanskrit 
>name for Tibet is Trivishtap."  This was news to me.  So I Schmoogled
>all over the web and found the same statement repeated over and over
>again.  So I decided it must be true, even though Bho.ta or Bho.tânta
>or Bho.tade'sa are the only Sanskrit names for Tibet I've ever known
>(some form of Bho.ta is used until today).  The Wiki entry doesn't
>mention Bho.ta even once.  The dictionaries give Trivi.s.tapa as
>meaning n. of a lingam, three staves of a parivrâjaka, Indra's
>heaven, etc. but don't mention Tibet.
The work of András Róna-Tás: "Wiener Vorlesungen zur 
Sprach- und Kulturgeschichte Tibets" has already been 
mentioned. It contains in the first chapter ("Die 
Benennungen Tibets", p. 23-91) ample evidences for the 
designations of Tibet and the Tibetans according to 
Chinese, Iranian, Arabic, Turkish, European etc. sources. 
But so far I can see, Róna-Tás has left out the Indic 
words for Tibet.

An classic article on the word "Tibet" was read by the 
French scholar Léon Feer at the 7th Orientalist Conference 
in Vienna (1886):
	- Feer, Léon: Étymologie, histoire, orthographe du mot 
Tibet.  In: Verhandlungen des VII. internationalen 
Orientalisten-Congresses gehalten in Wien im Jahre 1886. 
 Hochasiatische und malayo-polynesische Section. - Wien : 
Hölder, 1889, p. 63-81

A more recent article appeared in the felicitation volume 
for Geza Uray:

	- Bazin, Louis et Hamilton, James: L'Origine du nom 
Tibet. In: Tibetan history and language : studies 
dedicated to Uray Géza on his seventieth birthday / hrsg. 
von E. Steinkellner. - Wien : Arbeitskreis für tibetische 
und buddhistische Studien, 1991, p. 9-28

But again, the focus is not on the Indic designations for 
Tibet. Bazin and Hamilton are more interested in the 
Tibetan etymology and the Central Asiatic evidences in 
Turkish, Sogdian etc.

By the way, there is a Hindu Tantric work called 
Mahacinacaratantra expounding the Mahacinacara or 
Mahacinakrama. It was Giuseppe Tucci, if I remember right, 
who was of the opinion that the geographical setting of 
Mahacina is Tibet and not China. So, this would add 
another word for Tibet if the identification is correct.

Hope it helps

Peter Wyzlic

Indologisches Seminar der
Universität Bonn
Regina-Pacis-Weg 7
D-53113 Bonn
Deutschland / Germany

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