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Leonid Sergeevich
Puchkovsky

(09.11.1899 — 07.03.1970)
Born on November 9, 1899 in Yuryev, Lifland province, the Russian Empire (now Tartu, Estonia) to the family of the private docent (later, professor) of Yuryev Veterinary Institute Sergey Efimovich Puchkovsky.

In autumn of 1923, after several years spent in various Russian cities, he entered the Department of Law of Leningrad State University, from which he graduated in 1925. That same year, he was admitted to Leningrad Institute of Spoken Eastern Languages, China Section. At the same time, he attended lectures by Prof B. Vladimirtsov, Prof G. Grum-Grzhimailo and other fellows of the Mongolian Department.

In 1927 he went to Kyakhta, Buriat-Mongol Autonomous Republic where he lived in a Buryat family and learnt both Mongol and Buryat. Next year he moved to Ulaanbaatar to continue his Mongol studies. In both Kyakhta and Ulan-Bator he was employed as a school teacher.

In spring of 1929 he was invited by the Mongol Academy to a remote district to observe the work of the recently opened meteorological station. Thanks to the direct contacts with local people he made a number of notes on folklore and linguistics and collected concise collections of archaeological and ethnographic items. All of them were transferred to the Mongol Academy.

After his return to Leningrad in the autumn of the same year he was admitted to Leningrad State Institute for Historical and Linguistical Studies. His Mongol studies were supervised by Acad. B. Vladimirtsov, and he was especially interested in various Mongol scripts such as Uigir-Mongol, “quadratic”, etc., and Mongol manuscripts, especially historical ones. After graduating from the Institute in 1932, he started his work at the Institute of Oriental Studies as a researcher and secretary of the Mongol Department.

In 1934 he moved to the Manuscripts Department of the Institute to compile the complete academic card index of its Mongol collection and, following this, to a brief academic description. In 1941 he began to write his PhD dissertation.

In 1942 he was evacuated from Leningrad to Tashkent along with some other Institute’s researchers. There, in 1945, he completed his PhD dissertation entitled Mongol Epistolary Documents (Монгольские документы эпистолярного характера) and successfully defended it in February, 1942.

From 1945 to 1948, after the Institute's return to Leningrad, he worked as the secretary of the Mongol Department and continued his studies of the Mongol manuscripts. He prepared the critical text of the Mongol chronicle of the 17th century Altan Tobchi. He carried on also the academic description of the Mongol collection, focusing on the historical texts. From 1950 he worked at the Department of Oriental Manuscripts.

From 1945 to 1950 he was a lecturer at the Department of Asian and African Studies, Leningrad State University and developed a few special courses for it.

In 1951 he was appointed to senior researcher of the Institute. His lengthy work at the Mongol collection of manuscript and xylographs resulted in the catalogue entitledMongol, Buryat-Mongol and Oirat Manuscripts Kept at the Institute of Oriental Studies. Issue 1: History, Law (completed in 1955, published two years later). In the autumn of 1961, he made a scholarly trip to Ulaanbaatar. In the last years of his life he worked through the monograph Mongol Chronicles from the 13th to the 19th Centuries (this was left incomplete).

Compiled by Dr A.Zorin

Publications ( the entire list as a *.pdf file)

[1963]

Pučkovskij L. S. The Date of Composition of the Bolor Toli // Acta Orient. Hung. Tomus XVI. Fasc. 2. P. 217—223.

[1957]

Пучковский Л.С. Монгольские, бурят-монгольские и ойратские рукописи и ксилографы Института востоковедения. Вып. 1. История, право. Ответственные редакторы Б.И.Панкратов, Д.И.Тихонов. М.-Л.: Издательство Академии Наук СССР. 1957. 280 с., илл.


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