[INDOLOGY] A Cumulative Supplement Dictionary of Sanskrit

Walter Slaje slaje at kabelmail.de
Wed May 31 21:03:00 UTC 2017

Dear Jan,

thank you for your observations and proposals. In brief, we keep lists of
many more glossaries in our drawers, which we ourselves „miss“ no less
badly than you. We would have loved to add more, but the “present stage of
the project” you refer to is actually its final stage. The „Description“
provided on the search site informs the careful reader that funding was
granted by the DFG for three years only. Therefore, the
​volume of the data to be included had to be limited right from the outset,
and a manageable choice had to be made. What you get is what we could
manage to achieve in the allotted time.

Given that even the data base as such had to be developed in the course of
those three years and that every single entry of every single glossary had
to be adapted to the structure of the pw (hand-picked) for the purpose of
the intended synoptic representation – not to speak of proof-reading –, any
claim to completeness would have amounted to hubris. We have consciously
never made such a claim

Even though two works of Renou are deplorably missing, I agree, there are
still about fifteen other lexicographical works from Renou’s pen included
in the NWS, which spares you checking all of them separately when hunting
for a single word.

Since the NWS is almost limitlessly expandable, it is only a matter of
raising funds for completing it in a
​truly ​
satisfying manner. Everybody, who is interested in expanding it further, is
cordially invited to
​come up with feasible ideas for fundraising.

> From your reference to Oliver Hellwig's 2009 Wörterbuch der
mittelalterlichen indischen Alchemie with as specific topic "Mineralogy"
should we conclude that the contributions of this dictionary to other
fields such as alchemical instruments have not been used?

It depends on whether one likes to approach the NWS from a theoretical or
from a practical perspective: The theorist, relying on conclusions drawn
from a tag he has spotted, will refrain from search efforts and meet less
success than the more practical person, who blithely types, e.g., „*māraṇa*“
and feels rewarded by a result, which at the same time would also answer
your question about “mineralogy only”, were it indeed put earnestly, which,
I trust, it was not, but with mild irony
​ only​
. I like that.

In any case, we will of course adjust the topic. Thank you for alerting us
to it!

Kind regards,


2017-05-31 19:41 GMT+02:00 Jan E.M. Houben <jemhouben at gmail.com>:

> Dear Walter, Dear Jürgen,
> This is an excellent initiative, thanks for sharing this significant new
> research tool !
> Since you base yourself on lexicographical works "seit den Petersburger
> Wörterbüchern von O. Böhtlingk (speziell dem „pw“, 1879-89) und dem darauf
> aufbauenden Werk von R. Schmidt (1928)" it is not immediately clear whether
> pre-1928 critical studies in lexicography (critical of the remarkable work
> done by Böhtlingk and Roth) have sufficiently been taken into account.
> Think of Johann Georg Bühler 1894 The Roots of the Dhâtupâṭha not found in
> Literature, Indian Antiquary 23 (1894) 141-154, 250-255; WZKM 8, 17-42,
> 122-136, partially reprinted in Staal J. F. (ed.) A Reader on the Sanskrit
> Grammarians, MIT Press, 1972, 194-204.
> J.G. Bühler is quite critical of earlier lexicographical efforts: “no
> Sanskritist can afford to leave the modern vernaculars out of the range of
> his studies, if he wishes really to understand the ancient language” (1894:
> 150).
> I am curious why you list « Suppl[e]ment to Dictionary of Pāṇinian
> Grammatical Terminology. » Annals of the Bhandarkar Oriental Research
> Institute, vol. 90 (for 2009) : 127-151 (actual date of appearance: 2011),
> but not Roodbergen's Dictionary of Pāṇinian Grammatical Terminology itself
> (Pune: Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute, 2008).
> You have taken several lexicographical works of Louis Renou into account,
> but I do not see
> Renou, Louis. 1953. Vocabulaire du rituel védique. Paris: C. Klincksieck.
> Renou, Louis. 1957. Terminologie Grammaticale du Sanskrit. 2e impression.
> Paris: Champion.
> I also miss in your list Caland, Willem and Victor Henry 1906-07:
> L'Agniṣṭoma. Description complète de la forme normale du Sacrifice de Soma
> dans le culte védique. Tome I-II. Paris: Ernest Leroux, which contains a
> list of terms relevant to Vedic ritual.
> Specific studies of medical terminology seem not to have received
> sufficient attention in this stage of your project.
> I guess that a study such as A. Raison, "Un dictionnaire de matière
> médicale d'après les chapitres III à XII du Rajanighantu",  which appeared
> in G.J. Meulenbeld (Ed.) (1984), 251--260, would be usable.
> From your reference to Oliver Hellwig's 2009 Wörterbuch der
> mittelalterlichen indischen Alchemie with as specific topic "Mineralogy"
> should we conclude that the contributions of this dictionary to other
> fields such as alchemical instruments have not been used?
> Jan Houben
> *Jan E.M. HOUBEN*
> Directeur d’Études
> Sources et histoire de la tradition sanskrite
> Professor of South Asian History and Philology
> *École Pratique des Hautes Études*
> *Sciences historiques et philologiques *
> 54, rue Saint-Jacques
> CS 20525 – 75005 Paris
> johannes.houben at ephe.sorbonne.fr
> https://ephe-sorbonne.academia.edu/JanEMHouben
> www.ephe.fr
> On 31 May 2017 at 11:50, Walter Slaje via INDOLOGY <
> indology at list.indology.info> wrote:
>> Dear Colleagues,
>> we should like to inform the members of this list that a cumulative
>> Sanskrit dictionary with the German title „Nachtragswörterbuch des
>> Sanskrit“ (NWS), the result of a joint project at the universities of Halle
>> and Marburg and funded by the DFG, is accessible as a trial version:
>> http://nws.uzi.uni-halle.de/?lang=en
>> The new search tool lists lexicographical addenda from c. 170
>> dictionaries and glossaries, which postdate Böhtlingk's
>> "Sanskrit-Wörterbuch in kürzerer Fassung" (1879-89) as well as
>> R. Schmidts "Nachträge" (1928):
>> http://nws.uzi.uni-halle.de/dictionaries?lang=en
>> The search page provides a synoptic search in all three sources:
>> http://nws.uzi.uni-halle.de/search?lang=en
>> General information is provided here:
>> http://nws.uzi.uni-halle.de/description?lang=de
>> Basic usage is probably self-explanatory, but do use the button
>> "Help and useful hints" on the search page and the menu "Description".
>> Corrections and other feedback can be sent to nws at uzi.uni-halle.de.
>> We hope that the NWS will be of some use for Sanskritists.
>> Kind regards,
>> Walter Slaje (Halle) and Jürgen Hanneder (Marburg)
>> -----------------------------
>> Prof. Dr. Walter Slaje
>> Hermann-Löns-Str. 1
>> D-99425 Weimar
>> Deutschland
>> Ego ex animi mei sententia spondeo ac polliceor
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>> sed quo magis veritas propagetur et lux eius, qua salus
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>> Vindobonae, die XXI. mensis Novembris MCMLXXXIII.
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