Vedic manuscripts

adheesh sathaye adheesh at OCF.BERKELEY.EDU
Mon Oct 1 16:36:35 UTC 2007

Dear scholars,

Based on a set of conversations emerging at Robert Zydenbos's lecture  
here at the University of British Columbia last week, I am wondering  
if anyone might be able to provide their thoughts and/or references  
to scholarship regarding the question of the history of written  
manuscripts of the Vedic corpus--specifically the saṁhitā, but  
indeed any of the traditional śruti texts.

What is the most current assessment of when Vedic texts began to be  
transmitted in writing? What is the earliest "hard" evidence--i.e.,  
manuscripts and citations? Where did this first start happening, and  
in what scripts? Were some Vedic genres (e.g., Upanisads) more  
amenable to being represented on paper? Are there any premodern  
(commentatorial) discussions of this issue? And finally, what about  
translation? Had the Vedas been translated into vernacular or perhaps  
non-Indic languages before European scholarship?

I will be most grateful for your thoughts and bibliographical  

Adheesh Sathaye
Dept. of Asian Studies
University of British Columbia

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