[INDOLOGY] The Buddhist Indus Script and Scriptures [Publication Announcement]

Walter Slaje walter.slaje at gmail.com
Wed Mar 18 12:07:58 EDT 2020

Dear Colleagues,

I should like to draw your attention to a new publication in the field of
Buddhist studies:

*Dragomir Dimitrov, The Buddhist Indus Script and Scriptures.*

On the so-called Bhaikṣukī or Saindhavī Script of the Sāṃmitīyas and their

[Veröffentlichungen der Indologischen Kommission der Akademie der
Wissenschaften und der Literatur, Mainz. 7]. Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz
Publishers 2020. XVII, 256 pages, 10 ill., 1 map, 5 tables. 68,00 Eur.
ISBN: 978-3-447-11385-4


The Buddhist Indus script (*Sindhulipi* or *Saindhavī*) refers to an Indian
script with “arrow-headed” characters which the British Indologist Cecil
Bendall (1856–1906) noticed for the first time in a twelfth-century
manuscript, and which later scholars tentatively called “Bhaikṣukī”. With
the help of some Tibetan sources it is actually possible not only to
establish its original name, i.e. “Saindhavī”, but also to prove a direct
connection between this script and the Saindhava monks or the Sāṃmitīyas.
Despite the importance of this Buddhist school, until recently its original
canonical literature was considered to have been lost.

Dragomir Dimitrov presents now information about the unexpected discovery
of several Indian manuscripts written in Saindhavī script and offers a new
analysis of the Old Bengali *codex unicus* of the so-called Patna
*Dharmapada*, which should rather be known now as the Saindhavī *Dharmapada*.
This study proves that in fact a number of original canonical texts of the
Sāṃmitīyas and some of their post-canonical works have survived. The texts
are written in a Middle Indian language which it is suggested here to call
“Saindhavī”. The better understanding of the close link between the
Sāṃmitīyas/Saindhavas, the Saindhavī language, and the Saindhavī script
permits to fill some glaring gaps in Buddhist studies and Indian

For all titles published in this series, see:


Kindly regarding,

Walter Slaje
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