Archive for October, 2009

Words and paintings

Friday, October 23rd, 2009
I am Nalini Balbir, the content director of Jainpedia, the academic consultant who is in charge of ensuring that what’s on the website is accurate, comprehensive and intellectually credible. I’d like to give you an overview of how I began studying Jainism and talk briefly about why manuscripts are so central to Jainpedia.

As a professor of Indian studies at the Sorbonne, my academic interests include not only Jainism but Sanskrit, Pali, Prakrit, Theravada Buddhism, and Hindi languages and literature of the 20th century. Although I am fully involved with Jainpedia and have worked for some years with the Institute of Jainology and other institutions in the UK on Jain-related projects, my work in Jainism arose only towards the end of my undergraduate career. (more…)

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First images!

Thursday, October 8th, 2009

I’m very pleased to report that a few weeks ago we received nearly all of the digital images of the manuscripts we requested from the Wellcome Library.

You will be able to start appreciating the beauty of these artefacts in these small photos.

Manuscripts

A manuscript is made up of a number of folios. A folio is a sheet of paper or other material that has writing and sometimes an illustration on each side of the sheet. Each folio bears the handwriting of a scribe who used ink to write by hand. Many of the folios are also painted in full colour.

Kālakācāryakathā © Wellcome Library, London

Kālakācāryakathā © Wellcome Library, London

For most of the manuscripts we’ll be displaying on the forthcoming full Jainpedia website, each page (one side of the sheet) has been photographed. Sometimes a manuscript will consist of only one or two folios, because of its age, its material or the conditions in which it was kept before being held in a professional curated environment. (more…)

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