Early Tamil Epigraphy: From the Earliest Times to the Sixth Century A.D., Vol. 62 (Book Review)
The Journal of the American Oriental Society 2004, July-Sept, 124, 3
The Journal of the American Oriental Society
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Early Tamil Epigraphy: From the Earliest Times to the Sixth Century A.D. By IRAVATHAM MAHADEVAN. Harvard Oriental Series, vol. 62. Chennai: CRE-A and Cambridge. Mass.: DEPARTMENT OF SANSKRIT AND INDIAN STUDIES, HARVARD UNIVERSITY, 2003, Pp. xxxix + 719. Early Tamil Epigraphy represents the culmination of Iravatham Mahadevan's lifework on the early Tamil and Vatteluttu cave inscriptions dating from approximately the second century B.C. to the sixth century A.D. Mahadevan has long been acknowledged as the most prominent expert in this field, so it comes as no surprise that he now presents us with a comprehensive and definitive presentation of this important corpus. Mahadevan's claim that "the cave inscriptions of Tamil Nadu, which have generally been regarded as obscure, can now be read" (p. xi) is fully justified, as his edition gives convincing interpretations for nearly every word in the corpus. The two main obstacles to their interpretation in the past, namely "the lack of reliable texts and unfamiliarity with the orthographic rules governing the inscriptions" (ibid.), have now been removed by Mahadevan's energetic and comprehensive fieldwork and by his authoritative analysis of the orthographic systems, respectively.
- 2,99 €
- Category: Social Science
- Published: 01 July 2004
- Publisher: American Oriental Society
- Print Length: 13 Pages
- Language: English