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Title: A grammar of Manichean Sogdian
Author: Gerschevitsch, Ilja
Awarding Body: SOAS University of London
Current Institution: SOAS, University of London
Date of Award: 1943
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The Manichaean texts in Sogdian which were discovered in Central Asia, are partly written in the ordinary Sogdian writing---notorious for the difficulties inherent in its historicla system of spelling---which is used throughout in Buddhist and profane texts, partly in a special script, peculiar to Manichaeans, in which words are spelt phonetically. Although, at the time when our texts were written, the spoken language underlying these two spripts was, of course, the same, only the Manichaean script gives a true picture of its actual state. One therefore speaks of "Manichaean Sogdian" (Sogdian in Manichaean writing) asx distinct from "Buddhist Sogdian" (Sogdian in Sogdian writing). This thesis is a description of Manichaean Sogdian, based on all that has been found of it amongst the fragments of Manichaean texts discovered by the Turfan expeditions. A number of these fragments have been published, mainly by Dr. Henning; the rest are still unpublished, but I have been able to read them with Dr. Henning, who possesses a complete set of photographs of them which he very kindly lent me. I have thus been equipped with a considerable material which I have tried to shape into a descriptive grammar of Manichaean Sogdian, with frequent references to corresponding forms in Buddhist and Christian Sogdian. The result is a somewhat abridged phonology (a complete phonology would require a special thesis), a morphology as far as I could gather it from the material available, and some remarks on syntax, so far as they can be useful in a language whose remains consist almost exclusively of texts translated - often literally - from other languages.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral