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WMO 1(4), 2006 Print E-mail



of the orient




In Honour of the 80th Anniversary of Lev Menshikov

Journal based in 2004

Issued twice a year


Table of Contents as a *.PDF file

Dr I. Popova. Lev Nikolaevich Men'shikov (1926-2005) - 5

Fu Xianzhan. To the Memory of Meng Lie-fu - 16

M. Bankovskaya. Not the last bow of gratitude - 20


Biographies of Pilgrims to India in "Haedong Koseung cheon" and "Da Tang xi у и qiufagao seng chuan". Translation from Hanmun and analysis by Yu. Boltach - 22


The paper is dedicated to the comparative study of Lives of Eminent Korean Monks, composed by the Korean scholar-monk Kakhun in 1215, and one of its sources, Lives of the Eminent Monks of Great T'ang who Sought the Law in Western Countries, composed by the Chinese pilgrim Yi-jing in the beginning of the 8th century. The appendix contains the annotated translation of the corresponding parts of the two texts into Russian.

Gunjin Tyokuyu as a source on the military history of Japan. Introduction, translation from Japanese with commentaries by Ye. Osmanov - 46


The article is devoted to the main document in the history of Japanese army and fleet—Imperial Edict to Servicemen (Gunjin Tyokuyu).
The Edict was compelled by the ultra-militarist Yamagata Aritomo (1838-1922), so it reflects key points for the creation of the ideological basis of Japanese imperial army. Imperial Edict was published in January 1882 and immediately became a “Bible of army and fleet”. Until the end of World War II solders and sailors were obliged to learn by heart the text of the document, because it was believed that the Edict's characters are equal to an Imperial order.
A unique character of Imperial Edict is determined by a combination of two ideological parts—the Emperor's cult from the one hand and behavior and the moral code of medieval warriors on the other.
Unfortunately, there are no adequate and complete translations of the Edict from Japanese into European and Russian languages. However, the analysis of the Edict helps us to understand the sources of courage, heroism and self-sacrifice of Japanese soldiers during World War II. Also, it is noteworthy that the mental basis of the genesis and first steps of Japanese ideological machine that are not reflected in our historiography are too presented in the Edict.
Therefore, the article is a first attempt to show the ideological side of early Japanese army through the translation of the Edict.

From “Dong-po zhi lin” (“Recollections of Dong-po”) by Su Shi (Materials to the history of the Song-Dynasty biji, 6). Translation from Chinese with commentaries by Dr I. Alimov - 54


The article presents Russian translations of selected fragments from the collection of great Chinese writer, poet and statesman Su Shi (1037-1101) with commentaries of the translator. The contents of the collection is varied enough: here are fragments about well-known statesmen, not. only of Song Dynasty, and also episodes connected with them; the events that had place at the imperial court, and geographical descriptions, and also local customs, no less than records of prophetic dreams and extraordinary incidents; many fragments reflect author's personal impressions, notes about service and private life with all its ups and downs.

Al-'Allāma as-sayyid Muhammad Husayn al-Tabātabā'ī (d. 1402/1981). “The Balance |of equity] in the commentary of the Qur'an” (“Al-Mizān fī tafsīr al-Qur'ān”). Translation from Arabic with commentaries by Dr S. Prozorov - 82


This piece is an annotated translation of the Foreword and the commentary to the first sura of the Qur'an by Muhammad al-Tabataba'i, one of the most authoritative Shi'i scholars of the 20th century Iran. In the history of Islamic studies in Russia, this is the first attempt to provide Russophone readers with the commentary of the Holy Book of Islam, composed by a Shi'i scholar. Written in Arabic and translated in Persian, this tremendous work of 20 volumes have been published repeatedly.
Having used different materials and principles of argumentation, the author subdivided his Commentary on the Qur'an into several groups. Among others, he specially emphasized the Qur'anic (qur'ani) interpretation. Based on what can be found in the Qur'an itself (according to the principle the Qur'an is interpreted by the Qur'an), this kind of commentary is called Elucidation (al-bayari). Then, he uses interpretations, based on the oral transmission (riwa'i), or Tradition; on scholarly (’ilmi), philosophical (falsafi) or ethical (akhlaqi) argumentation; on historical data (ta'rikhi) or on combinations of these kinds of interpretation, such as religious-and-historical, religious-and-philosophical, religious-and-ethical, ethical-and-social (akhlaqi ijtima). The author comments every single piece of the Qur'anic text with different combinations of the above-mentioned kinds of interpretation. However, the Qur'anic interpretation, which Muhammad al-Tabataba'i always starts with, predominates throughout the entire work. This is the methodological approach of the scholar, who adhered to the principle of the self-sufficiency of the Qur'an. Although he recognizes other kinds of interpretations as possible, he regards them only as secondary, as they are insufficient for attaining absolute and profound understanding of God's Revelation. Partially because of this attitude of Muhammad al-Tabataba'i, the Qur'anic interpretation was chosen for translation.


A. Ivanov. “Zuozhuan” — “Shijing”: from the quote to its original source - 108


The Zuozhuan with its extensive quotations from the Shijing is probably a more effective source for the accurate understanding of the latter than classical commentary tradition formed a few centuries later. As a rule, deep and expressive contexts of the Commentary of Zuo make it possible to catch with exhaustive lucidity the meaning and mood of the quotes from the Book of Songs contained in them. Correctly understood quotes, in turn, quite often lead to an essential reconsideration of the general interpretation of their original sources, which were produced mainly in the Han period.
The paper presents a poetic translation of two poems from the Shijing, which was made on the basis of their contextual use in the Zuozhuan. As a result of this approach, the odes Mao Shi 222 Cai shu The people gathers the beans and Mao Shi 176 Jing-jing zhe e Ill weeds grow apace reveal content and mood which have never been noticed by either classical commentary tradition or European translators.

Dr V. Uspensky. The trip to Mongolia in 1912-14 by Priest Amphilochius - 137


The Ecclesiastical Academy in the city of Kazan in Central European Russia which existed from 1842 to 1923, was a major training centre for Christian missionaries. In 1911 the Tibetan language was put on the Academy's curriculum in order to improve the education of the missionaries who were expected to preach to the Buddhist peoples of Russia (the Kalmucks and the Buriat Mongols). Priest Amphilochius, a lecturer of the Academy, was sent to Outer Mongolia in 1912. He stayed there for two years and learned the Tibetan and Mongolian languages with a learned Mongolian lama. He studied Buddhist texts and rituals and visited Buddhist sites and monasteries. As he wrote, “One year of my stay in Mongolia enriched me with much more knowledge than years of studying Lamaism from books”.
Upon his return to Russia Amphilochius began teaching Tibetan to students. However, the 1917 Russian Revolution put an end to his studies. Amphilochius continued his activities as a cleric and in 1925 he was ordained as the bishop of Krasnoyarsk, a city in Siberia. Having experienced several years of imprisonment he was executed in 1937. In 2002 Amphilochius was declared a saint by the Russian Orthodox Church.
During his stay in Mongolia Amphilochius also collected books in Tibetan and Mongolian. A number of these books, including five gsung-'bum’s (collected works) of Tibetan and Mongolian authors (lCang-skya Ngag-dbang hos-ldan; Thu'u-bkwan Ngag-dbang chos-kyi rgya-mtsho; Cha-har dge-bshes Blo-bzang tshul-khrims; the Seventh Dalai Lama sKal-bzang rgya-mtsho; Dza-ya pandita Blo-bzang 'phrin-las) now form part of the Tibetan Collection of the Institute of Oriental Studies in St. Petersburg.

Dr M. Vorobyova-Desyatovskaya. A Kharoshthi fragment from the Collection of S.F.Oldenburg - 145


A small fragment (size: 8x4 cm; code: SI 0/10) is technically a central part of a palm sheet. There are 5 lines of the Kharoshthi text on each side of the sheet. The fragment was brought by S.F. Oldenburg from his first expedition into Central Asia in 1909-1910. It was found somewhere in the Northern part of the Eastern Turkestan. The exact location is unknown.
The works of the American Professor Richard Salomon who studied the fragments of Kharoshthi texts, from the collection of Schoyen (Norway) also written on palm leaves, have shown that now scholars have at their disposal one more, that is the fourth, old version of the Mahaparinirvana Sutra which was found in Bamiyan, on the territory of the ancient Gandhara. It is likely that the fragment from the Oldenburg collection belongs to the same version. Unfortunately, the volume of information which has been preserved in the extant text makes the proper identification impossible.

Dr S. Neveleva. The system of characters' naming in the Mahābhārata - 150


The following article deals with various kinds of names of the personages in the Mahābhārata, who can be divided into mythological and non-mythological. As a matter of fact this division is quite relative: thus, epic heroes brothers Pandavas are at the same time sons of the gods.
Name-epithet is similar to the permanent epithet, the fundamental means of the creation of the epic character. The latter is characterized by: 1) almost permanent combination of the same feature and the same addressee, 2) timeless nature of this feature, 3) the importance of its content, 4) possible absence of the connection with the concrete situation, 5) automatism of the association. All these parameters can be applied to the name-epithet, though with a very important difference: the name-epithet does not typify, but individualizes the object, its distinctive function is absolute.
Epic names represent the system, which can be described as a quadruple structure with the following sections:
I. Personal names.
II. Names after relatives: I. After the ancestor— 1.1 after the close relative: 1.1.1. patronymics: a) after the terrestrial father, b) after the celestial ancestor; 1.1.2 matronymics; 1.2 names after the distant ancestor (including the founder of the clan). 2. Names not after the ancestor, but some other relative: 2.1 after the descendant, 2.2 after husband, 2.3 after wife, 2.4 after some other relative (brother, for example).
III. Names-epithets: 1. Social and ethnic characteristics (ethnicity, status of the king or the leader, birthplace, place of residence or reign). 2. Special circumstances of birth (the constellation is specified, for example). 3. Description of the appearance — 3.1 general characteristics, 3.2 some peculiar feature, 3.3 typical details (specific hair, eyes). 4. Name after the attribute— 4.1 after the personal weapon, 4.2 after the personal vehicle, 4.3 after the distinctive symbols. 5. Names, indicating the functional specificity — 5.1. social, 5.2. mythological. 6. Pointing at the demon-combating deeds.
IV. Titles are similar to the functional names, which often need the qualifying context. In general, the list of the god-names is much more extensive than the number of the names of the epic heroes. All outstanding figures, important for the narrative of the epic, are represented by a more diverse system of names, emphasizing different aspects of the character.
The names of the epic gods, with exception of the names of the hero-god, i. e. Kŗşņa (who is a god and a hero at the same time) do not include patronymics, matronymics, other designations after the name of the ancestor or those pointing to ethnic origin or connection. It is quite natural for the “unborn” gods. On the other hand, the lists of names of the epic gods include individual names-epithets, characterizing their appearance, personal attributes and demon-combating deeds. “Biographies” of gods, reduced to the symbol (sign)-names and encoded in the name system, in contrast to the heroic images proper, are usually developed beyond the bounds of the Mahābhārata.

Dr I. Zograph. Parts of speech in the Middle Chinese language (according to medieval monuments in Baihua) - 164


Chinese—as a language in which the word outside a syntactic structure (i. e. outside grammatical context) cannot be identified as having any particular grammatical meaning and in which syntactic functions of word are determined according to their place in a sentence and to their links with other words—is known to distinguish different parts of speech only and solely on the basis of (a) syntactic features of a word and its position in a sentence as well as on the basis of (b) its collocations with syntactic words. In the article all elements of the Middle Chinese lexicon (including both full and syntactic words and function words) are classified as (1) nouns; (2) verbs; (3) adjectives; (4) numerals; (5) adverbs; (6) modal verbs; (7) substitutes; (8) syntactic and semisyntactic words (and function words); thus giving 8 grammatical classes. Of special note are both the very certain method by which a word is related to a certain class and the syntactic features used in this classification which can vary seriously throughout the history of Chinese.

Ye. Stepanova. The joy of wandering: Epigraphic monuments - 181


The epigraphy of Nothern Song period was used by the author as a main source, especially inscriptions of travellers (you ji). The article opens with a brief description of the tradition of inscriptions in China and the peculiarities of the you ji inscriptions. Wanderings and travels were not only a common pastime for Confucian officials but also a significant part of spiritual culture. Such combination of an official's service and longterm walking became one of the reasons of the stability of Confucian tradition in China. Wanderings were connected with a sense of joy which appeared during it. Different kinds of joy are examined in the article.

Dr I. Nadiroff. Ancient Arabic cult of eagle (some new epigraphic evidence) - 194


The paper is devoted to the ancient Oriental cult of eagle. In Hatran inscriptions (the 1st century ВС — the 3rd century AD), where there was a temple of the Eagle, one can find not only many personal names formed of the word nishraeagle; vulture, but also numerous dedications made to the god named MRN NŠR' Our Lord Nishra, though he was not the very influential one in the pantheon. On the basis of new analysis of RES 4698, the author supposes that it was quite possible that the cult could enter South Arabia from the north of Mesopotamia, maybe originally from Hatra and Qenneshrin. Some new light is shed on semeion. The author also pioneered the new interpretation of the word 'uqab of the Aramaic inscriptions.


Dr A. Knysh. Historiography of Sufi Studies in the West and in Russia - 206

From the Introduction

Libraries have been written on the phenomenon of “Islamic mysticism” or “Sufism” (Arab. tasawwuf) in the Muslim world, in non-Muslim Asia, and in the West. The definition of this term and its heuristic validity have been a matter of heated debates among Western experts on Islamic studies. In the meantime, as a contemporary Western scholar has aptly remarked, “people end up taking up these terms to mean whatever they wish”. One can of course denounce this conceptual and terminological “free-for-all” as deeply misleading and deplorable (which, in a sense, it is), but one should bear in mind that the same lack of consensus applies to practically every analytical category deployed in the field of Islamic studies, including such critical ones as “Islam”, “fundamentalism”, “Wahhabism”, “[Islamic] modernism/reformism”, etc. All these and many other conceptions often mean quite different things to different people and their usage varies considerably depending on the context in which they are deployed…

Dr Ye. Kychanov.Chinese translation of a source on the history of Tibetan law - 239


The article deals with a Chinese translation of the codes of Tibetan law which were compiled by two Tibetans and published in Beijing in 1994.

R. Beisebaev. On the problem of correlation between the texts of al-Istakhri and Ibn Haukal in the chapter on Transoxiana - 244


Transoxiana is described in Arabic, Persian, Chinese written works of the 9th—12th centuries. We know that the famous work written by al-Istakhri and Ibn Haukal—Kitab al-Masalek wal-Mamalek contains the chapter about Transoxiana.
In fact, the text of al-Istakhri coincides with the text of Ibn Haukal at the first half of the chapter about Transoxiana until the description of Samarkand rustaks. But the second half of this chapter does not coincide with the corresponding part of the Ibn Haukal's text. The work of Ibn Haukal is more detailed than that of al-Istakhri published by M.J. de Goje.
The article describes the correlation of two texts of al-Istakhri and Ibn Haukal in the chapter about Transoxiana to the works Kitab masalek wal-mamalek. The investigation opened the fact that Ibn Haukal used the text of al-Istakhri.
As a result, after the texts were correlated it became clear, that the Cairo variant did not much differ from Ibn Haukal's one. Mostly, Ibn Haukal made stilistical changes, and no more.


L. Chuguevsky. Schilling Pavel L'vovich [The overview of Schilling's documents (Fund No. 56) in the Archives of the Orientalists at St. Petersburg Branch of the Institute of Oriental Studies, RAS]. Preface and publication by Dr I. Popova - 249


The overview of the documents of Pavel L'vovich Schilling von Canstadt (1786-1837) in the Archives of the Orientalsists at St. Petersburg Branch of the Institute of Oriental Studies was written by the late L.I. Chuguevsky (1926-2000) in 1962 for the reference book The Bulletin of the Archives of the Orientalists. Vol. 2, which was never published and existed only in 6 draft copies.
P.L. Schilling is an outstanding figure in the history of Russian science and technology. He was famous for his achievements in the field of electrical engineering and electromagnetic telegraphy; in 1826, he devised an original system of lithographic printing in the Chinese language. Serving since 1814 at the Asiatic Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, P.L. Schilling started researching languages and history of Asia. In 1828, he was elected a corresponding member of Russian Academy of Sciences for his studies of literature and antiquities of the East. Throughout his life, P.L. Schilling maintained friendly relations with N.Ya. Bichurin, who is recognized as one of the most prominent researchers of China to this day.
P.L. Schilling's enthusiastic work in collecting manuscripts and blockprints in Tibetan, Mongolian and Chinese languages was of great importance for further development of Oriental studies in Russia. Schilling's book collections came to the Asiatic Museum and considerably expanded its library.
Analyzing P.L. Schilling's documents in the Archives of the Orientalists, L.I. Chuguevsky concluded that it contains a great number of papers connected with Schilling's activities in lithography and with his expedition to the Eastern Siberia in 1830-32. It also represents P.L. Schilling's vast correspondence, which reveals new biographical and historical details, his numerous reports on commerce between Russia and China, the documentation on statistics in Siberia and Baikal region in the 1830s, the book lists of his collection.
The archival materials of P.L. Schilling remain of a great value for the solving of certain academic matters and for the study of the history of science in Russia.

N. Küner. N.Ya. Bichurin and the studies of the Central Asian history (based on the materials of his “Collection of information on the peoples who inhabited the Middle Asia in ancient times”. Introduction and publication by Dr A. Reshetov  - 263


In his article N.V. Küner shows that the work by Bichurin on the peoples of the Central Asia in ancient times is based on the Chinese documents which are a precious source for the studies of the origin of the Central Asian peoples and their ethno-genetic relations. The material on the Mongols, who appear under various names in the Chinese sources, allowed Bichurin to subdivide their history into two periods. The early period is the time when the Turko-Mongolian unity was hidden under a common ethnonym (thus ethno-genetically related Hunnu, Tukye and Uighurs became Turks). The later period is the Mongolian period proper.


Dr I. Kul 'ganek. Conference "215 years of studies of the Mongolian Collection in the Asiatic Museum - Saint Petersburg Branch of the Institute of Oriental Studies, RAS: from the first title list to the three-volume catalogue" (Saint Petersburg, June 6, 2005) - 273

Dr T. Pang. 2nd North American Conference on Manchu Studies (Harvard, Mass., May 27-29, 2005) - 276

Dr I. Popova, Dr Takata Tokyo. Roundtable Discussing the Dunhuang studies on the riverside of the Neva (Saint Petersburg, July 4-6, 2005) - 279


Dr K. Marandjian. “Utsuho-monogatari” (“The novel about the hollow”). Intr., transl. and comment. by V.I. Sisauri  - 282

T. Vinogradova. Views from the West. Collection of 19th century pith paper watercolours donated by Mr. Ifan William to the City of Guangzhou - 284

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