[INDOLOGY] Indic loanwords in Tibetan

Matthew Kapstein mkapstei at uchicago.edu
Mon Apr 6 14:18:26 UTC 2015

Dear Arlo,

My article The Indian Identity in Tibetan Literature addresses this in part. It is available on my academia page.

In general, beginning in the eighth c., the Tibetans adopted a clear policy of using Tibetan neologisms in preference to loanwords wherever this was feasible, with the result that only a very small number of indic loans came into general use, perhaps fewer than 5% not to speak of 50! 

Hope this helps,
Matthew Kapstein
Directeur d'études,
Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes

Numata Visiting Professor of Buddhist Studies,
The University of Chicago


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