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Palladino, Martina (2022) The Sanskrit Version of Yasna 1-8. PhD thesis. SOAS University of London. DOI:

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The present work constitutes a study of the first eight chapters of the Sanskrit version of the Yasna, the core ritual of the Zoroastrian religion. It includes a new edition of the Sanskrit text, accompanied by the corresponding Avestan one, a translation into English, and a Sanskrit – English glossary which includes references to the Avestan and Pahlavi corresponding terms. The work also includes an introductory chapter on the historical context in which the translation was carried out, followed by a study of the structure of the text, and a detailed analysis on the translation techniques employed by the Sanskrit translator(s). Particular attention is paid to the peculiar feature of this text, consisting in the Sanskrit version being a translation of the Pahlavi version, which in its turn is a translation with commentary of the Avestan original. A detailed analysis of the peculiar Sanskrit language used to compile this text is possible thanks to the repetitiveness of the text itself while the lexicon, rich in loanwords and calques, constitutes a unique and to date little studied variety of Sanskrit. Genuine Indian (Jaina, Buddhist and Hindu) elements are identifiable amidst the Zoroastrian cont ent, and a systematic translation project is recognisable behind a Sanskrit text that is influenced by both Indian regional features and the Zoroastrian tradition. The Sanskrit Yasna was probably composed in the first centuries of the second millennium CE in northwestern India, a land which has always been characterised by religious and cultural syncretism. Therefore, it must be read both in a diachronic perspective of Zoroastrian tradition lineage, and in a synchronic perspective of Indian contemporary cultural environment

Item Type: Theses (PhD)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses
Supervisors Name: Almut Hintze
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 10 May 2022 16:15
Funders: European Union

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