Tangut Manuscripts with Tibetan Phonetic Glosses

These pages represent an attempt to digitise and collate all the known Tangut manuscripts with Tibetan phonetic glosses, although at present only those manuscripts held at the British Library have been completed. The manuscripts are typically fragmentary and damaged, making it difficult to read some parts of the Tangut and/or Tibetan texts. Furthermore the Tibetan glosses are written in a cursive, headless script with a number of very similar letterforms that can be hard to identify out of context (e.g. the Tibetan letters nga, da and ra can be indistinguishable, and the letters ga and na can be almost identical), so that it is frequently necessary to use the reconstructed reading of the associated Tangut character to decide on the reading of the Tibetan gloss. I have relied greatly on the work of other Tangutologists, in particular Dr. Tai Chung Pui 戴忠沛, in identifying and reading both the Tangut text and the Tibetan glosses, but where appropriate I have made corrections to the readings given by Tai Chung Pui and others, and in some cases I have suggested my own differing readings.

Feedback, comments, corrections and suggestions may be made to me by email, or by commenting on the blog post where I announced this project.

British library, London

Institute of Oriental Manuscripts, Saint Petersburg



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