[INDOLOGY] Origin of the term "Indology"
rrocher at sas.upenn.edu
Fri Aug 22 02:08:56 UTC 2014
I wish I knew. Please keep me copied if anyone knows. The term is
clearly linked to the professionalization of the discipline in the early
19th century (barring an early-bird neologism in the 18th). This most
likely takes us to Germany or France. The OED notes the first
occurrence of "Indology" very late, in 1888, and tellingly, in a Trübner
catalog. The first use I can recall offhand, and then of the related
term "Indologen," occurs in a letter Christan Lassen sent A. W. v.
Schlegel from Paris on 10 June 1825: "Von den Indologen ist mir nur Herr
Burnouf zu Gesicht gekommen," in which he used the term in the flat
tones of a well-worn word. Might we engage in a collective game of "beat
that date," and see how far back we might reach?
In a related question, I wonder how accepted Indology/Indologie and
related terms are accepted in common parlance in different languages.
In spite of the OED's listing, my spellcheck consistently flags
"Indology" and related terms as faulty. I also recall the concern a
British well-wisher expressed at the prospect of a (now published) book
going by the title "The Making of Western Indology," since "Indology is
not a word." We explained that it was the name of our discipline, and I
remember pointing out that it was also the name of our professional
listserv. Our friend was too polite to insist, but I am afraid that it
convinced him right there and then that our book was not intended for
the general public!
Professor Emerita of South Asia Studies
University of Pennsylvania
On 8/21/14 11:28 AM, Michaels, Axel wrote:
> Dear all,
> does anybody know when the term "Indology/Indologie" denoting the
> academic discipline appeared first?
> Thanks in advance, Axel Michaels
> *Prof. Dr. Axel Michaels*| Acting Director Excellence Cluster "Asia
> and Europe in a Global Context" | Director Dept. of Classical
> Indology, South Asia Institute | Director Research Unit "Historical
> Documents of Nepal" of the Heidelberg Academy of Sciences and
> Humanities |*Contact *|Universität Heidelberg,
> Südasien-Institut| Im Neuenheimer Feld 330, D-69120 Heidelberg |Tel.
> +49-6221-548917 / Fax +49-6221-546338 |sek-michaels at uni-heidelberg.de
> <https://exchange.uni-heidelberg.de/owa/redir.aspx?C=f1a10da1fac4416a98bc5b9c7fcac9d8&URL=mailto%3asek-michaels%40uni-heidelberg.de> (SAI
> office) | Axel.Michaels at urz.uni-heidelberg.de
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