[INDOLOGY] Grammatica Sanscritica by Jean-François Pons S.J. + Antoine-Léonard Chézy

Christophe Vielle christophe.vielle at uclouvain.be
Wed Jun 3 15:54:08 UTC 2020

Dear List,

I have the pleasure to inform you about the recent publication of Pierre-Sylvain Filliozat's new book:

À l'origine des études sanskrites: La Grammatica Sanscritica de Jean-François Pons S.J.. Étude, édition et traduction par Pierre-Sylvain Filliozat, Paris, Mémoires de l'Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres vol. 56, 2020, 226 pp.

Three Sanskrit grammars were composed by Jesuits in India during the the 17th-18th centuries. 
The first one was written ca 1660-62 by Father Heinrich Roth (1620-68, Agra), in Latin and Devanāgarī script for Sanskrit, based on Anubhūti Svarūpācārya’s Sārasvatavyākaraṇa; the facsimile of the autograph manuscript was published in 1988 by A. Camps & J.-C. Muller: https://archive.org/details/sanskritgrammarmanuscriptsoffatherheinrichroths.j.16101668arnufcampsjeanclaudmullerbrill_643_C <https://archive.org/details/sanskritgrammarmanuscriptsoffatherheinrichroths.j.16101668arnufcampsjeanclaudmullerbrill_643_C>
(an edition is still expected).
The second one, entitled Grammatica Grandonica, was composed by Father Johann Ernst Hanxleden (1681-1732, Kerala), in Latin and Malayalam script for Sanskrit, based on the Siddharūpa and (a cursory reading of) Dharmakīrti's Rūpāvatāra (H's grammar was later on plagiarized by Paulinus in his Sidharubam, 1790). The edition of the autograph manuscript was made by T. Van Hal and myself in 2013: urn:nbn:de:kobv:517-opus-63218 <https://nbn-resolving.org/urn:nbn:de:kobv:517-opus-63218> (an additional French translation and grammatical commentary, nearly completed, is due to appear).
The third one, entitled Grammatica Sanscritica, now published, was composed by Father Jean-François Pons (1698-1752, Chandernagor), in 1730-32 for its first 5 chapters/first part based on Vopadeva’s Mugdhabodha, in Latin and Bengali script (autograph ms.), and then for its 6th chapter/last part (syntaxe) based on Kramadīśvara's Saṃkṣiptasāra, in French and Roman transcription of the Sanskrit (with some use of Telugu-Kannada script in the beginning; the preserved ms. of this part is a copy) (P's grammar was later on used by A.H. Anquetil Duperron, who translated the French part in Latin). 

Filliozat's achievement is remarkable. After a general introduction on the 17th-18th centuries Jesuit missionary work on Indian languages and civilization (pp. 9-24), a chapter is devoted to the figure of Jean-François Pons (pp. 25-47), another to the edition of his letters (pp. 49-80; of five, the last, longest one, on Brahmin knowledge had been previously published as one of the Lettres édifiantes); there follows the introduction to the manuscripts and the indigenous grammatical sources of the author (pp. 81-95), then the annotated edition of the two parts (with a French translation of the Latin text) (pp. 97-197), and finally the color-facsimile of the two manuscripts (pp. 199-282). A bibliography and index are given at the end. A few extracts of the book are provided here:

On the early history of Indology, note also the volume on 

Le sanctuaire dévoilé: Antoine-Léonard Chézy et les débuts des études sanskrites en Europe, 1800-1850, éd. Jérôme Petit & Pascale Rabault-Feuerhahn, Paris: BnF - Geuthner, 2019, 458 pp.
No ToC but see the programme of the 2015 Conference of which it is the Proceedings + paper-abstracts here:

Best wishes
Christophe Vielle <https://uclouvain.be/en/directories/christophe.vielle>

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