Re: [INDOLOGY] Meaning of Paṭa?

Richard Salomon rsalomon at
Thu Oct 31 18:34:33 UTC 2013


Have a look at D.C. Sircar's Indian Epigraphy, pp. 66-67; also my Indian 
Epigraphy p. 132, for further references. It has been suggested (I don't 
remember exactly where -- this may go all the way back to Buehler's 
Indische Palaeographie) that archival copies of land grants were kept on 


Rich Salomon

On 10/31/2013 8:41 AM, Donald R Davis wrote:
> Dear Colleagues,
> I am working on the /Smṛticandrikā/ of Devaṇṇabhaṭṭa and its discussion
> of documents.  Several passages in the sub-section on /rājaśāsana/
> enjoin a king to inscribe a land grant “/paṭe vā tāmrapaṭṭe vā/.”
> Yājñavalkya (1.319) is the first, I think.  Most translators have
> rendered /paṭa/ here as “cloth,” which makes no sense to me, as I have
> never seen a cloth inscription of this sort and it seems an unusually
> non-durable material for an important inscription.  So, /Amarakośa/ (and
> MW lists this, too) gives several synonyms, all of which point to the
> chirauli/chironji nut (Buchanania Latifolia) or, I suppose, its bark.
> Can anyone help me identify /paṭa/ here more certainly?  I don’t know
> the first thing about trees and this appears to be a common enough tree
> in India and other parts of Asia, but is the bark of this tree meant
> here?  Thanks for any help or leads you may have.
> Best,
> Don Davis
> Dept. of Asian Studies
> University of Texas at Austin
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Richard Salomon
Department of Asian Languages and Literature
University of Washington, Box 353521
Seattle WA 98195-3521

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