New Publication: Manuscripts and Travellers

Another brief note to say that my new book, Manuscripts and Travellers, co-authored with Imre Galambos (who also writes the Shahon blog) has just been published. Since it retails at just shy of 100 Euros, I don’t expect you to rush out and buy it, but I hope it will come to a library near you soon. The book is about on a manuscript which was carried by a Chinese monk through the Tibetan monasteries just east of Lake Kokonor, as part of his pilgrimage to India. The manuscript includes a series of Tibetan letters of introduction addressed to the heads of monasteries along the route. It dates to the late 960s, coinciding with the large pilgrimage movement during the reign of Emperor Taizu of the Northern Song, and is a unique contemporary testimony of this movement. The letters to and from high-ranking Tibetan monks show the vibrancy of the Tibetan monasteries in Amdo during this period, towards the end of Tibet’s ‘era of fragmentation’.

In 2010 Imre and I travelled to China to follow the pilgrim’s route through Amdo, which I wrote about in Amdo Notes IAmdo Notes II and Amdo Notes III.