Saturday, 19 November 2011

Powerful words

A major exercise in ‘linguistic archaeology’ has set out to complete a comprehensive survey of Cambridge University Library’s South Asian manuscript collection, which includes the oldest dated and illustrated Sanskrit manuscript known worldwide.

Written on now-fragile birch bark, palm leaf and paper, the 2,000 manuscripts in the collection express centuries-old South Asian thinking on religion, philosophy, astronomy, grammar, law and poetry.

The project, which is led by Sanskrit-specialists Dr Vincenzo Vergiani and Dr Eivind Kahrs and funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, will study and catalogue each of the manuscripts, placing them in their broader historical context. Most of the holdings will also be digitised by the Library and made available through the Library’s new online digital library (

To read more about this exciting project, see:

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Cambridge news: The Centre is moving!

Advance warning: The Centre of South Asian Studies, University of Cambridge, will be moving from its picturesque riverside location in Laundress Lane to the Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DP between 14 December and 16 January 2012.  

During this period access to the Centre's library and archive collections will be severely limited and visitors are advised not to plan research trips to Cambridge. 

The Centre's new premises will be on the top floor of 7 West Road, with a fine view of the University Library.  Our collections will also benefit from purpose-built archival stores.

For a webcam view of the new building see:

Our website, telephone numbers and email addresses will remain the same.

We look forward to welcoming back researchers in the New Year.

Friday, 4 November 2011

Sovereign, squire and rebel: Maharajah Duleep Singh and the heirs of a lost kingdom

There's an event at the National Archives, Kew, on Maharajah Duleep Singh on 10th November. Speaker Peter Bance has published a number a books on Ango-Sikh history, including two on Maharajah Duleep Singh.