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Sizova A. Tibetan Manuscript on Birchbark from the Collection of the Institute of Oriental Manuscripts RAS // Revue d’Etudes Tibétaines. New Currents on the Neva River: Proceedings of the Fifth International Seminar of Young Tibetologists. Number 55, Juillet 2020. P. 462–474.


Using birchbark as a writing material is not extraordinary but quite unusual for Tibetan manuscript culture. Agnieszka Helman-Ważny, the author of the most comprehensive up to date study on Tibetan codicology, gives only one example of a manuscript on birchbark. However, the item she mentions is, in fact, not written in Tibetan but in the Sanskrit Śāradā script.1 The Berlin Turfan-Collection2 and the Mongolian Academy of Sciences 3 hold several Tibetan birchbark manuscripts. When my colleague Kirill Bogdanov drew my attention to the text that became the subject of the present article, I realized that I had never seen anything like it before. There was a multitude of fragile slips, so thin that they resembled onionskin, covered with red and silver writing that was barely legible without a magnifying glass (Fig. 1). The res accessoria and the archives told a compelling story, but unfortunately, some pieces to the puzzle are still missing...

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Keywords


Buddhist manuscripts
Likhachev, Nikolai Petrovich
Tibetan manuscripts on birchbark

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