In 2013 I had the wonderful opportunity to participate in a research trip to Kyoto and Tokyo to explore, with other European colleagues, the similarities between reading practices in early medieval Europe and Japan in the period roughly 7th to 9th centuries.
This summer we had the great fortune to make a return visit, where we had the opportunity to see more precious manuscripts, to participate in an intense workshop at the National Institute for Japanese Language and Linguistics (NINJAL) and to spend time in informal discussion with some of the leading experts in the field of East Asian glossing.
Here are some very rough notes on Indo-European roots of Buddhist (and some Hindu) terms of Sanskrit origin that are fairly well-known in English. I couldn’t find a similar list anywhere else (in print or online), so I thought I’d share mine here.
[Latest revision: 1 July 2015.]
ámṛita अमृत ‘immortality’
*n̥- (privative particle); *mer- ‘die’ (cf. Lat. im-mort-ālis, Gk ἀμβροσία ‘that pertaining to the immortals’)
avatar, S. avatāra अवतार ‘passes over, descends’
S. ava- ‘down'; *terH- (Lat. trans, Eng. through)
*bheudh- ‘awaken, be aware’ (cf. Eng. bid, bode; note Grassman’s law)
This collection of essays, deriving from a Cambridge conference in 2007, has now been listed on the CUP website, due to appear in August 2012.
I have a small contribution exploring how Irish scholars around the seventh century derived a basic knowledge of Greek vocabulary from a range of Late Antique sources and how they applied that knowledge.
Here’s the full table of contents:
Introduction: multiple languages, multiple identities—Alex Mullen
1. Language maintenance and language shift in the Mediterranean world during the Roman Empire—James Clackson
2. Why did Coptic fail where Aramaic succeeded? Linguistic development in Egypt and the Near East after the Arab conquest—Arietta Papaconstantinou
3. Language contact in the pre-Roman and Roman Iberian peninsula: direct and indirect evidence—Oliver Simkin
4. Complaints of the natives in a Greek dress: the Zenon Archive and the problem of Egyptian interference—Trevor Evans
5. Linguae sacrae in ancient and medieval sources: an anthropological approach to ritual language—Alderik Blom
6. Typologies of translation techniques in Greek and Latin—David Langslow
7. Greek in early medieval Ireland—Pádraic Moran
8. An habes linguam Latinam? Non tam bene sapio: views of multilingualism from the early medieval West—Paul Russell
9. Towards an archaeology of bilingualism: on the study of Greek-Coptic education in late antique Egypt—Scott Bucking
10. Neo-Punic and Latin inscriptions in Roman North Africa: function and display—Andrew Wilson
11. Cultures as languages and languages as cultures—Robin Osborne