[INDOLOGY] Origin of the term "Indology"

Jean-Luc CHEVILLARD jean-luc.chevillard at univ-paris-diderot.fr
Sat Aug 23 02:30:49 UTC 2014

Dear Peter,

you might want to see the diagram obtained
when you add a fourth term to the list,
as seen in:


The fact that "civilisation indienne" has more hits that "indianisme",
which has more hits that "indologie", which has more hits than "études 
indiennes" will probably be self-explanatory to those who are familiar 
with the French Academic landscape, and know about the ICI (Institut 
de Civilisation Indienne), with the BEI (Bulletin d'Études Indiennes, 

As one who was an eye-witness of the closing down, in the early 
nineties, of the "section 40" of the CNRS (Centre National de la 
Recherche Scientifique), I am well aware of the possible consequences 
(in the administrative realm) of statements concerning the inexistence 
of a word (or of a combination of words).

What will happen to the EPHE is someone starts to explain, 
/doctement/, that:

"Les sciences philologiques n'existent pas réellement"


"Les sciences religieuses n'existent pas réellement"



-- Jean-Luc Chevillard (CNRS, Paris, UMR7597 [HTL],
   currently in Pondicherry for the CTSS)

On 22/08/2014 22:53, Peter Wyzlic wrote:> Dear all,
> if you take Google's ngram research tool (that takes the materials at 
> Google Books as basis) and look for "indianisme", "indologie", "études 
> indiennes" with search options "Language=French", "Date Range=1800-2000" 
> you get the following graph:
> URL: <http://goo.gl/8bAhmd>
> So, in the majority of sources the red line with "indianisme" prevails. 
> Of course, Google's text recognition isn't perfect, and it may occur 
> that the language is wrongly assigned. But it shows a trend, 
> nevertheless. You may click at the date ranges at the bottom to view the 
> links in Google Books where the search terms can be located.
> All the best
> Peter Wyzlic
> --
> Institut für Orient- und Asienwissenschaften
> Bibliothek
> Universität Bonn
> Regina-Pacis-Weg 7
> 53113 Bonn
> Am 22.08.2014 um 18:07 schrieb Matthew Kapstein <mkapstei at uchicago.edu 
> <mailto:mkapstei at uchicago.edu>>:
>> David Smith has asked that I post the following on his behalf:
>> A quick look at gallica.bn.fr <http://gallica.bn.fr> shows that in the 
>> Mercure de France, 15 May 1925, P. Masson-Oursel, in a section headed 
>> "Indianisme", notes in a footnote to p. 250 that the death of F. 
>> Lacôte is "une perte cruelle pour l'indologie".
>> David Smith
>> Retired Reader in South Asian Religions
>> Lancaster University
>> UK
>> d.smith at lancaster.ac.uk <mailto:d.smith at lancaster.ac.uk>
>> Matthew Kapstein
>> Directeur d'études,
>> Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes
>> Numata Visiting Professor of Buddhist Studies,
>> The University of Chicago
>> ___________
>> _______________________________________________
>> INDOLOGY mailing list
>> INDOLOGY at list.indology.info <mailto:INDOLOGY at list.indology.info>
>> http://listinfo.indology.info

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