Sanskrit Manuscripts : Candrālaṃkāra


Sanskrit Manuscripts

<p style='text-align: justify;'>This manuscript is a <i>codex unicus</i> of the <i>Candrālaṃkāra</i> composed by the 12th-c. Sinhalese Buddhist monk and scholar Sāriputta (in Sanskrit, Śāriputra) (Dimitrov 2010a), a sub-commentary on the <i>Cāndravyākaraṇapañjikā</i> of Ratnamati (see Dimitrov 2010a, 2014), in its turn a commentary on the <i>Cāndravyākaraṇa</i> of Candragomin with the <i>Vṛtti</i> attributed to Dharmadāsa . As initially suggested by Hahn (2005: 709), and later confirmed by Hanisch (2006: 111), the 34 leaves kept in Cambridge belong to the same manuscript as another bundle of 23 leaves earlier belonging to the private Vajrācārya collection in Kathmandu (Nepal), which were photographed in 1971 by the Institute for Advanced Studies in World Religions (Stony Brook, USA), while two leaves of the latter set were microfilmed by the Nepal-German Manuscript Preservation Project in 1983. Only the latter two are still extant in the Vajrācārya collection, while the others have been dispersed or lost in unclear circumstances. A facsimile edition of the entire manuscript, integrating the images of both the Cambridge and the Kathmandu portions in the correct order for a total of 57 leaves, is given in Dimitrov 2010a. The manuscript is written in the rare Bhaikṣukī script mostly used, it seems, by Buddhists in Eastern India. The script is mentioned in the 11th-century account of al-Bīrūnī, as noted by Bendall (1890) in his preliminary note on the manuscript. In modern times it has sometimes been called "Arrow-head" because of the characteristic form of the letters. On the basis of the colophon found in the Kathmandu portion, Dimitrov (2010a) surmises that the manuscript may have been copied in the 12th c. CE at the great Buddhist monastery (<i>mahāvihāra</i>) of Somapura (modern Paharpur, in Bangladesh). </p>

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