[INDOLOGY] Aśoka, Ashoka, Ahsoka

Antonia Ruppel rhododaktylos at gmail.com
Wed Oct 11 14:10:54 UTC 2023

Dear Herman,

For once, this is a case of mythology that came to be recently enough for
its creators to tell us about their motivations on Wikipedia:

Ahsoka was created by George Lucas
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Lucas> and Dave Filoni
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ahsoka_Tano#cite_note-2> The character was
developed to illustrate how Anakin Skywalker
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anakin_Skywalker> develops from the brash,
undisciplined Padawan apprentice in *Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the
to the more reserved Jedi Knight in *Episode III – Revenge of the Sith
 (2005).[3] <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ahsoka_Tano#cite_note-TVGuide-3>
who had two daughters, also wanted the character to appeal to girls.[4]
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ahsoka_Tano#cite_note-taylor-4> Early in
development, Ahsoka's name was "Ashla".[5]
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ahsoka_Tano#cite_note-7> Lucas renamed her
after the ancient Indian emperor Ashoka
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ashoka>; the spelling was then altered by
screenwriter Henry Gilroy <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Gilroy>.[7]
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ahsoka_Tano#cite_note-8>  (

and Twitter:

'In honor of #CloneWars 10th, the title page for the series bible I wrote
back in 05. When we met with George to discuss the bible he changed
Anakin's Padawan from 'Ashla' to 'Ashoka', after the Indian Emperor of the
Maurya Dynasty. I later tweaked it to Ahsoka to make her unique.' (

All my best,

On Wed, 11 Oct 2023 at 11:08, Charles DiSimone via INDOLOGY <
indology at list.indology.info> wrote:

> Dear Herman Tieken,
> I don't know if Ahsoka is related to Aśoka but there is a long history of
> Sanskrit and related influence in Star Wars. I recell reading that Yoda
> takes his name from yoddhṛ. The Duel of the Fates song from Episode 1 has
> its chorus sung in (mangled) Sanskrit. Additionally, Tibetan and Kalmyk
> were supposedly the inspiration, in part, of the language of the Ewoks.
> With my best wishes,
> Charles
> Prof. Dr. Charles DiSimone
> Associate Professor of Buddhist Studies
> Department of Languages and Cultures
> Ghent University
> On Wed, Oct 11, 2023 at 9:44 AM Tieken, H.J.H. (Herman) via INDOLOGY <
> indology at list.indology.info> wrote:
>> Dear List members,
>> I saw announced a sequel to Star Wars which features a character called
>> Ahsoka. I am curious to know if this is a mangled version of Aśoka, via
>> Ashoka (in Dutch papers the aspiration in the name Gandhi is often
>> misplaced: Ghandi).
>> with kind regards, Herman
>> Herman Tieken
>> Stationsweg 58
>> 2515 BP Den Haag
>> The Netherlands
>> 00 31 (0)70 2208127
>> website: hermantieken.com
>> *The Aśoka Inscriptions: Analysing a corpus*, New Delhi: Primus Books,
>> 2023.
>> https://primusbooks.com/ancient/the-asoka-inscriptions-analysing-a-corpus-by-herman-tieken/
>> _______________________________________________
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