Tag Archives: Xorde Avesta

Penitential Sections of the Xorde Avesta

Buyaner, David. 2016. Penitential sections of the Xorde Avesta (patits). Critical edition with commentary and glossary (Iranica 22). Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz Verlag.

The Zand ī Xorde Awestā, the Pahlavi version of the compilation of Avestan liturgical texts with the traditional name “Small Avesta” (Xorde Awestā), is one of the main monuments of the corpus of Pahlavi translations and commentaries (called zand) of Avestan original texts. Since the Xorde Awestā and its Pahlavi version consist of a variety of heterogeneous texts which belong to different strata of Zoroastrian literature, they are not only sources of utmost importance for Avestan and Pahlavi philology, but also for the history of Zoroastrianism, and, especially in its penitential sections, for the reconstruction of Zoroastrian law. The recitals of repentance called Padēd ī pašēmānīh (“Penitentiary prayer for repentance”, in two versions) and Xwad padēd (“Penitentiary prayer for oneself”), which are the main focus of this project, are of great interest for the reconstruction of Zoroastrian jurisprudence, since they contain the most extensive enumeration of sins and offences, using the specific terminology of religious and criminal law. The semantic and etymological analysis of legal vocabulary is one of the most urgent desiderata of Iranian Studies. Two other significant problems in this context concern the date of the composition of the Xorde Awestā and the underlying principle of its compilation. An exact analysis of those sections of the Zand ī Xorde Awestā without a prototype in the Avestan original, such as the Padēd texts, which are also known in their Pāzand version (i.e. in Middle Persian written in the Avestan script), would shed light on the question as to why these compositions were included in a zand compilation and the problem of the origins of this unique source.

For more information see the Table of Content of this volume.

Table of Content:

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The Transmission of the Avesta

Cantera, Alberto (ed.). 2012. The Transmission of the Avesta. (Iranica 20). Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz.
The Avesta is a collection of liturgical texts considered as their sacred book by the Zoroastrian community. It contains the recitatives of the Zoroastrian liturgies still celebrated in the 17th century, some of them even celebrated until today. The texts integrated in these ceremonies were composed in different places and at different times, and transmitted orally for centuries. The exact date of the fixation of the ceremonies in the shape in which they are presented in the manuscripts and the creation of the different manuscripts is unknown. But today it is proven that even after the creation of the first manuscripts, the transmission of these liturgical texts was the result of a complicated process in which not only the process of copying manuscripts but also the ritual practice and the ritual teaching were involved. The only deep analysis of the written transmission of the Avesta was made by K. F. Geldner as Prolegomena to his edition of the Avesta. Since then, many new manuscripts have appeared. In The Transmission of the Avesta contributions by the main experts in this field are gathered: the oral transmission, the fixation of the different collections, the first writing down, and the manuscripts. Special interest is devoted to the manuscripts. Some contributions of the volume were presented at the correspondent colloquium held in Salamanca, September 2009; others were added in order to make of the volume a comprehensive work on the different aspects of the Avestan transmission.

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Corpus Avesticum meeting: “Ḫorde Avesta”

Corpus Avesticum | Meeting in Berlin 22–23 May 2015

Institute of Iranian Studies, Freie Universität Berlin

The Project of Corpus Avesticum (CoAv) is a pan-European Co-operation that aims at making the Zoroastrian Texts, called the Avesta accessible in a new Edition. The current one stems from 1896 and is erroneous with regard to many crucial aspects, the most important of which is the amalgamation of the liturgical and exegetical text witnesses.

The next meeting of the European research network Corpus Avesticum will take place in Berlin. 22. and 23. May 2015 researchers from Spain, Germany, Italy and the UK will meet at Free University of Berlin to discuss various projects in preparation of a new edition of the Avesta.

This meeting is dedicated to the research questions mainly regarding to a new edidion of the Ḫorde Avesta/Khorde Avesta.

Program:

  • Paul Widmer/Florian Sommer: “Vortrag zur Fehlertypologie in den Yašt-Handschriften bzw. den Einfluss derselben auf das Verständnis der Grammatik”.
  • Almut Hintze: “The Vištāsp Yašt and an obscure word in the Hadoxt Nask”.
  • Leon Goldman: “On the Sanskrit Yasna manuscript S1″.
  • Alberto Cantera: “On the wāz gīrišnīh”.
  • Mehrbod Khanizadeh: “A Preliminary Study on the Relationships Between the Pahlavi Version of the Exegetic Yasna Manuscripts”.
  • Celine Redard: “On the Paris Mss”.
  • Antonio Panaino: “The corpus of the Yašts and their Pahlavi Translations. Considerations about a Textual Loss and its Reasons”.
  • Götz König: “Research on the Bayān Nask. State of the Art”.
  • Miguel Ángel Andrés Toledo: “The Drōn Frawardin Yašt Ceremony in the Avestan Manuscripts”.

The other members of the research group CoAv are also Arash Zeini (London), Kianoosh Rezania (Bochum), Salome Gholami (Frankfurt), David Buyaner and Shervin Farridnejad (Berlin).

*Image: An illustrated copy of the Avestan Wīdēvdād Sāde. Copied in Yazd, Iran, in 1647 ( © British Library RSPA 230, ff. 151v–152r). Published in: Farridnejad, Shervin. 2014. The Avestan Manuscript 4060 (RSPA230), Videvdad Iranian Sade of the British Library. (Avestan Digital Archive Series 75). Salamanca: Universidad de Salamanca.