Kultur- und Religionsgeschichte Südasiens
Cultural and Religious History of South Asia



Logo Otani University

Fr. 16th July, 2021
09:15-10:45 Hrs (CEST/UTC+2h)
4:15-5:45 pm (JST)

Meeting ID: 832 6480 4133
Passcode: 737844


Joint Research Group: Manuscriptology and Digital Humanities
Co-organized with Digital Archive Section, Shin Buddhist Comprehensive Research Institute, Otani University, Kyoto

Digital edition of the Nyāyabhāṣya

PD Dr. Phillip A. Maas
(Leipzig University)

One of the most important traditions of classical Indian philosophy is the system of Nyāya (logic), which takes the Nyāyasūtra, a text ascribed to the sage Akṣapāda, as its foundational work. Anonymous redactors must have completed the Nyāyasūtra in the second half of the fourth century, shortly before Pakṣilasvāmin Vātsyāyana composed the commentary called Nyāyabhāṣya (NBh). The NBh is of fundamental importance for our understanding of the early phase of Nyāya philosophy and for reconstructing the earliest reachable form of the Nyāyasūtra. In addition, the work is an eminent source of knowledge concerning other earlier and contemporary philosophical traditions of South Asia.

Notwithstanding the fundamental importance of the NBh for the history of philosophy, the work was never critically edited. This situation started to change in 2004 when a series of research projects were initiated at the University of Vienna with funding from the FWF and later at the University of Leipzig with funding from the DFG. In 2016, the DFG generously granted financial support for a long-term project devoted to a critical print edition of the third and fourth chapters. In these projects, surrogates of seventy manuscripts of the NBh were procured mainly from India, which contain similar but deviating versions of the text.

In my presentation, I shall explain the methodology that the long-term project applies and highlight the intermediate results that have been achieved to document the NBh’s different text versions, investigate the history of its written transmission, reconstruct its oldest reachable text version, and disseminate all relevant research materials and results in print and through a digital research environment.


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