American Oriental Society

Abstracts of Communications Presented

at the 207th Annual Meeting

23-26 March, 1997



Clemens Reichel
An interesting group of seal impressions from Tell Asmar
The inscription of the seal of Ashubliel, servant of Ibalpiel I of Eshnunna, has been known for a long time. Its iconography, however, has so far remained unpublished. Only preserved in impressions, a preliminary examination has confirmed the reading of the seal legend but also identified impressions of several distinct seals among them. A study of the seal motives, the archaeological context of each impression and information retrieved from tablets found in association with these sealings allows some interesting observations on the relationship between seal owner, iconography and function of each seal.
Susan J. Rosenfield
Please Pass the Salt: The Significance of Salt In the Veda
This paper will examine how salt, an essential yet everyday ingredient for life, takes on a significance beyond its culinary usage within the Vedic Tradition. The Veda and Vedangas use several terms for salt. The context and usage of each of these will be evaluated for its possible mythological implications, such as its connection with cows, the ancestors, the earth and progeny.

Likewise, the usage of salt in Vedic ritual will be examined. Unlike some other traditions which use salt liberally in their rituals, the use of salt in the Vedic Yajna is quite the anomaly. The Vedic gods generally prefer sweet, milky, unctuous, grain or meat offerings. The question then arises, why is salt ever used in a ritual context, e.g., in the Vajapeya ritual where packets of salt are thrown at the Yajamana. By understanding the mythical and symbolic implications of salt, these questions become easier to answer.

Previous works by Bodewitz and Falk on this topic of salt will also be considered. The final analysis aims at reflecting a broader understanding of how salt was viewed in Vedic times.

Richard Salomon
A Buddhist Genizeh: Reconstructing the Library of a Gandharan Monastery of About the First Century A.D.
The British Library has recently acquired an unprecedented collection of fragments of Gandharan Buddhist manuscripts written on birch bark scrolls in the Gandhari (northwest Prakrit) language and Kharosthi script. These manuscripts were discovered in the form of thirteen composite rolls, consisting of fragments of from one to six originally separate manuscript scrolls, that were placed inside clay water pots and buried.

The manuscripts appear to date from the early first century A.D., which would make them the earliest substantial body of extant Buddhist manuscripts in any language. This provisional date is suggested by references to historical figures of this period in certain of the texts and in the dedicatory inscriptions on the clay pots in which they were stored.

The manuscripts were already fragmentary in ancient times when they were rolled up and put in the clay jars. The thirteen rolls seem to have been randomly compiled from scraps of old manuscripts, as shown by the fact that fragments of the same original scroll are sometimes found in two or more of the thirteen rolls.

This situation is clarified by secondary interlinear notations found at the bottom several of the scroll fragments, such as likhidago sarva, "[It] has all been written." These notes may have been added by a later scribe to indicate that the texts had been recopied onto new manuscripts and were to be discarded. The method of interment of these worn-out scrolls in clay jars is similar to that of human remains in Buddhist Gandhara, and it would seem that old manuscripts were treated like sacred relics and ritually buried like the bones of Buddhist venerables. In other words, this find of manuscripts constitutes something like a "Buddhist genizeh."

Hamid Sardar-Afkhami
Self-fulfilling Prophecies in Tibetan `Texts from Buried Treasure' ( gter ma): Tibetan Historical Consciousness in the Age of Decline
The Buddha's passage into nirvana was a key event in the historical consciousness of certain segments of the Buddhist community in India; as one moved away from this date, the lifespan of sentient beings as well as the possibility of enlightenment itself was believed to decrease. The Tibetans inherited these prophecies from various Indian sutras, and developed their own timetables of decline.

Generally speaking, while the commentarial literature in the Tibetan canon is mainly concerned with 'ahistorical' Buddhist contributions to thought such as logic, epistemology, and the sutras of the 'Perfection of Wisdom', it is in the non-canonical literature, particularly in the `texts from buried treasure' ( gter ma), where the prophecies of decline found in Indian Buddhist sutras are discussed and further developed. In this paper I will focus on the Padma Bka'thang and the Byang- gter, two 'texts from buried treasure' dating from the 14th century, showing where Tibetans borrowed from Indian Buddhist sutras and how they interpreted the prophecy of decline in the wake of their own historical experience.

Kalyan Kumar Sarkar
Siva in the Art of Early Java(Indonesia)
In the area of Indo-Javanese stone and bronze sculpture, siva occupies a prominent place. The process of Javanization in style is reflected in a certain standardization in attributes and gestures.

In this paper an attempt has been made to study the iconography of Siva in early Java. Both stone and bronze images have been examined. Stylistic considerations sometimes point to traces of Indian influences. Some striking deviations from the Indian prototypes have also been noted.

Kurtis R. Schaeffer
The Attainment of Immortality ( Amrtasiddhi/'Chi med grub pa)---A Bilingual Tibetan and Sanskrit Manuscript
Recently an unusual manuscript of thirty-eight folios was discovered, which contains both a Sanskrit work and its Tibetan translation placed side by side. The work is entitled Amrtasiddhi, or in Tibetan 'Chi med grub pa, The Attainment of Immortality, and was authored by one Avadhutacandra/Dbu ma zla ba. It runs two-hundred and ninety-three verses and is divided into thirty-five sections. Each folio side contains three tri-partite lines of text. The uppermost part is the Sanskrit text, written in a Newari script dating most likely from the Twelfth Century, the second or middle part is a transliteration of the Sanskrit in the printing-style Tibetan script, and the lowest part is the Tibetan translation, written in the cursive-style Tibetan script. The work deals with the yogic practices deemed necessary to attain immortality, a metaphorical term for release from worldly suffering, and appears to be a synthetic work incorporating early medieval Indian tantric physiology, Buddhist philosophical notions, and concepts such as "liberation in life" ( jivanmukti) which are not normally associated with Buddhism. The text is not included in the Tibetan Buddhist canon, but shares keys concepts with a corpus of texts contained therein attributed to Virupa and Amoghavajra. Virupa is paid reverence to at the beginning of Avadhutacandra's The Attainment of Immortality, and several of its verses are also found in Virupa's works. Avadhutacandra himself is as yet unknown save for a small canonical work dealing with the rites necessary for initiation into the practice of amrtasiddhi. The paper will describe the manuscript, the basic themes of the work, and make an attempt to situate it historically and doctrinally.
Brian B. Schmidt
`Imagining Other Worlds': The Many "What If's ..." of Arslan Tash
Evidence and arguments, old and new, for and against, the authenticity of the Arslan Tash amuletic inscriptions are considered as is the (hypothetical?) significance of these inscriptions for understanding ancient west Asian religious traditions of the east Mediterranean.
Glenn M. Schwartz 1995-96 Results from Tell Umm el-Marra, Jabbul Plain, Western Syria
The second and third seasons of fieldwork at Umm el-Marra were conducted by the Johns Hopkins/University of Amsterdam joint expedition in May-July 1995 and 1996. The main aim of the project is the investigation of the developmental trajectory of west Syrian early complex society. Umm el-Marra, largest Bronze Age tell in the Jabbul plain east of Aleppo, was previously sounded by R. Tefnin; P. Matthiae suggested its identification with Tuba, attested in Ebla and Yamkhad period sources. Our results indicate that the site was founded in the mid-third millennium B.C. (Early Bronze IVa) as a relatively large (ca. 25 hectares) fortified center. Evidence of a gap in occupation in the early Middle Bronze period, at least on the site acropolis, is succeeded by later Middle Bronze remains indicating the importance of the town in the period of the Yamhad state. This occupation is followed by an extensive mid-second millennium B.C. settlement with evidence of a site-wide conflagration in the early Late Bronze Age. Hellenistic and Roman occupations comprise the latest settlements at the site.
Maya Shatzmiller
Obstetrics and Pediatrics in Islamic Medicine and Law: A chapter in the social history of women and medicine
The object of this paper is to study the legal and social dimensions of obstetrics and pediatrics in the medieval Islamic environment. I propose to do that by correlating the medical knowledge of the Arab practitioners as described in their medical works with the legal provisions in the Islamic law books which addressed them. I will focus on the most common aspects in Muslim women's lives during the medieval period, 800-1600, looking at subjects like conception, birth, mid-wife, breast feeding, wet nursing, child rearing, and studying them in conjunction with the social practices. My sources are medical treatises written in Arabic by Muslim physicians, who lived and practiced in Muslim Spain, and legal works of several genres which were written both there and in North Africa at the same period. The focus of the research is Muslim Spain, but comparative and additional works from other Islamic lands will also be considered. This study will contribute to our knowledge of women's health, their legal status, as well as to their social and intimate interaction with the medical profession, their husbands and children.
Rahim Shayegan
The Avesta and the Bactria-Margiana Archaeological Complex (BMAC)
In this presentation I want to discuss the possibility of a historical connection between the so-called Bactria-Margiana Archaeological Complex (ca. 2000-1750 B.C.) and the Avesta.

The BMAC culture is defined on the basis of typologically similar artifacts (seals, ceramics) and monumental buildings, reflecting the emergence of a complex society. It lasted for about 250 years and then collapsed, as evidenced by the precipitous decline of urban settlements and the disappearance of artifacts. At the same time, however, there is an abundance of BMAC artifacts on the Iranian plateau and in the Indo-Iranian borderland, although no artifacts indigenous to the plateau and Indo-Iranian borderland have been found in the heartland of the BMAC culture itself. This situation can, in my opinion, be explained either by raids into or expansion from BMAC territory, or both, but not by peaceful trade. The collapse of the BMAC heartland may therefore have been triggered by the abandonment of the heartland in favor of the periphery. The only large population that might conceivably have entered the Iranian Plateau at this time, would seem to be the Iranians themselves.

The Avestan texts are divided into two chronological layers, Old and Young Avestan. A period of presumably several centuries (4-5 centuries) separates the two. The language of both the Old and Young Avestan texts, as well as the geographical horizon of the Young Avestan texts, point to northeastern Iran as the place where the texts were composed. The fact that the Young Avestan texts contain no certain reference to Media, may indicate that they very composed before the time of the Median empire, that is, before ca. 700 B.C.

A terminus ante quem for the composition of the Young Avestan Texts does not, however, indicate a date for the composition of the Old Avestan texts; however, the differences in language and contents point to a break that can only have been caused by a major historical event. I would like to suggest that the collapse of the BMAC and the movement of Old Avestan communities into the Iranian plateau may be the important historical event needed to explain the differences between the two groups of texts. Thus, I suggest that the Old Avestan texts belong to the Iranian communities of the Bactria-Margiana Archaeological Complex (2000-1750 B.C.), whereas the Young Avestan reflect the religious evolution of the same population after they settled in the northeastern part of the Iranian Plateau (ca. 1200-1000? B.C.).

Jorge Silva Castillo
The Term nagbu, "totality" or "abyss", in the First Hemistich of the Epic of Gilgamesh
The term nagbu which occurs in the very first hemistich of the so called "standard version" of the Gilgamesh epic admits two meanings: "totality" and "spring of fresh waters"; while most translators have chosen the former, there may be reason to prefer the latter. Among the few who have opted for the second meaning, only J. Tournay and A. Shaffer have, in their joint book, commented briefly on their choice.

In this paper, I will offer a thorough review of the arguments for and against each of the possible translations (hence also interpretations) before advancing a rendering "spring of deep water" for nagbu, thus connecting it with the notion of "abyss = Apsu."

Denis Sinor
Migrations in Inner Asia: Facts and Fancy
The paper would follow up on some casual remarks made at the Society's meeting in 1996 concerning traditional thinking about Central Eurasian "nomad" migrations. It will examine the validity of the "chain-reaction" presentation of movements of peoples, will emphasize the distinction between migration and conquest, and will stress the importance of small scale migrations.
P. Oktor Skjaervo
Historical Documents from Eighth-Century Khotan
A large number of documents in Khotanese on paper and wood come from the area of Dandan Oiliq on the southern Silkroad and date from the 8th century, from the time just before and during the Tibetan occupation of Khotan. The documents are currently divided between the collections in London, St. Petersburg, and Stockholm. With the recent publication of the St. Petersburg collection it is now possible to form a picture of various aspects of the society they originated from. In this presentation I shall survey the documetns and their contents and outline their socio-economic and political aspects.
John Masson Smith, Jr.
Dietary Decadence and Dynastic Decline in The Mongol Empire
Most Mongol rulers lived short lives. Some had low fertility: as Ann Lambton put it, they "ceased to be good breeders." Dietary imperfections and improprieties may account for these problems.

Pre-imperial Mongols lived primarily off of sheep's milk, with occasional meat supplements, usually mutton (they preferred, but could seldom afford, horsemeat). Voluminous drinking complemented this unbalanced, high-fat diet. The vigorous activities and rigors of nomad life, and the modesty of food supplies offset these nutritional negatives. A minimally-adequate flock would provide family-members with about 2300 calories. The Mongols' primary tipple, fermented mare's milk ( qumis), was only available for a few months a year, and then only in limited quantities and in low strength.

Their conquests gave the Mongols new food supplies. They brought 500 wagon-loads a day of provisions from China to Mongolia, perhaps doubling every inhabitant's rations. Leaders supplied themselves lavishly with horsemeat, qumis, and imported foodstuffs---especially drink. Their high-volume drinking custom could now be indulged fully: all year long and with strong liquor besides "lite" qumis. Large quantities of this food and drink were served at great banquets on frequent occasions, and everyday heavy drinking was normal.

Both men and women of the Mongol dynasty ate and drank copiously. In consequence, gout was a common disease. Mongol women appeared "wondrous fat," several rulers drank themselves to death, many died young, and their reproductivity---at least in the Middle East---declined. Hulegu, Chinggis' grandson and founder of the Middle Eastern dynasty, lived to age 48 and fathered 21 children by 5 wives and some concubines; his last three successors, by contrast, led short lives and between them fathered only 5 children who survived infancy.

Royal infertility in the Middle East led to dynastic extinction and governmental fragmentation. Short lifespans among Chinggis' progeny in general meant short reigns, frequent succession crises, and, arguably, unstable and brief empire.

Yushau Sodiq
Towards Understanding the Text: A legal interpretation of the Qur'an with reference to Imam Al-Qurtubi's approach and his interpretation of the Qur'an Chapter 4:2-3
Each religious community discerns its own discipline of reasoning and interpreting its religious text . Muslims are not excluded. Muslim exegetes have developed their own approaches to reading and interpreting, the Islamic texts&emdashthe Holy Qur'an and the Hadith. In this paper I would analyze Muslim exegetes' methodology of interpreting the Qur'an and how their method was developed and applied. I would explain how Imam al-Qurtubi used this approach in interpreting chapter 4.2-3 of the Qur'an. This will be followed by examining a linguistic interpretation of the same verses. A few questions will be raised on whether Imam al-Qurtubi was following a tradition or he forged his own hermeneutic, and to what extent did other exegetes concord or disagree with him. I Will argue that Muslim exegetes follow a distinctive methodology which allows them to understand the text differently and thus enables the Islamic law to accommodate novel issues. That approach is scientific. Hence it is subject to re-evaluation and re-examination to meet the need of the time.
Benjamin D. Sommer
The Akitu Festival: Its Purpose and Meaning in Light of a Recent Comparative Approach
This paper examines the interpretation of the Akitu festival by the historian of religion, Jonathan Z. Smith. Smith rejects the dominant view of the ritual's significance articulated by scholars of Mesopotamian studies and historians of religion (Henri Frankfort; Mircea Eliade), who saw in the festival a celebration---and re-enactment---of Marduk's victory over chaos, and hence an attempt to restore mythical or primordial time, if only momentarily. Rather, Smith suggests, the festival described in the well-known Seleucid era Akitu program reflects a situation of incongruity similar to that found in Second Temple period Judaism: the wrong king sits on the throne, and thus the earth is out of balance with heaven. Responses to this situation include apocalypticism (longing for the right king's sudden return); gnosticism (belief that even in heaven the wrong king reigns); and what Smith terms rectification: the assertion that the earthly king really is the right king after all. For Smith, the Akitu ensures the legitimacy of the Greek who rules Babylon. Thus the Akitu ceremony does not encode cosmogonic or mythical beliefs but presents a piece of national-religious propaganda. Smith compares this politically-inspired ritual, inter alia, to the Ceramese myth of Hainuwele, and he likens both to western Pacific cargo cults.

Smith's critique of the earlier consensus does not succeed. He is correct (though hardly original) to note that one cannot equate the Seleucid text's rite with Akitus known from shadowy references dating back to the Sumerians; and he rightly criticizes other aspects of the Frankfort/Eliade reconstruction. Nonetheless, other features do show that the festival briefly abolishes normal time and renews the connection between heaven and earth established at creation; oddly, Frankfort and Eliade failed to cite this evidence, which stems especially from the festival's fifth day. I present this evidence here and use it to bolster a revised version of the older consensus.

Devin J. Stewart
Specialization in the Islamic Doctorate of Law
The medieval Muslim jurists produced a rich tradition of texts on legal methodology ( usul al-fiqh) covering a wide range of theoretical issues in the areas of language, stylistics, the interpretation of texts, and philosophy, but as Bernard Weiss has suggested, these theoretical discussions were not as far removed from the practical concerns of the courtroom and the everyday activities of jurists as is often supposed. This study attempts to demonstrate the connections between such theoretical discussions and the more immediate concerns of historical Islamic legal and educational institutions, connections which are for the most part not made explicitly in the texts and are further obscured by distance in space, time, and context. The specific topic taken up here is that of tajzi'at al-ijtihad or tajazzu' al-ijtihad "the divisibility of ijtihad," a question discussed in texts of legal theory from al-Ghazali's (d. 505/1111) work al-Mustasfa until the present. Drawing on biographical works and ijazah documents as well as usul al-fiqh works, the study suggests that the issue of tajzi'at al-ijtihad may be related to the practical historical whether subsidiary licenses could be granted to jurists who wished to specialize in a particular legal area but did not have the ability or inclination to become fully qualified in all areas of the law. Allowing tajzi'at al-ijtihad would allow the granting of subsidiary licenses, or subdoctorates, for fields such as inheritance law or the law of marriage and divorce.
John A. Taber
Kumarila on Perception
It is well known that, in contrast to Bhavadasa, Kumarila does not interpret Mimamsa Sutra I.1.4 as a definition of perception. In the Pratyaksa Chapter of his slokavarttika he argues that MS I.1.4 only intends to exclude yogic perception as a means of knowing dharma and not to define perception in general. At the same time, however, he also shows, in a point-by-point rebuttal of criticisms raised by Dignaga in his Pramanasamuccaya, how a valid definition of perception could be based on MS I.1.4. Thus a theory of perception does emerge from the Pratyaksasutradhikarana, and that is what I shall outline in this paper.
Gábor Takács
Ancient Semito-Hamitic Substrate in Proto-Indo-European?
In the paper I examine in the Proto-Indo European cultural lexics the linguistic traces of an eventual influence of the Semito-Hamitic substrate present in the ancient Near East. It must be stressed that I am going to deal not with the well known and established borrowings between Proto-Semitic and Proto-Indo-European (these have most recently been discussed by i.e., Illic-Svityc, Dolgopolsky, Gamkrelidze and Ivanov). I treat here that part of the Indo-European cultural terminology that may be related to Semito-Hamitic but surely not via Proto-Semitic.
1. PIE *kwon- (weak stem *kun-) "dog" < SH *k[w]an- "dog" (present in Berber, East Cushitic, Omotic, West and East Chadic). The connection between E vs. SH was supported by Illic-Svityc.

2. PE *g[w]ow- "cow, bull" < SH *gaw- "bull"' (attested in Egyptian, Berber, ?North Omotic [Kaffa], Central and East Chadic). Cp. also Sumerian gu4 "head of cattle, ox". The connection of Egyptian ~ IE ~ Sumerian has been supported by Ipsen, Castellino; Gamkrelidze and Ivanov; Boisson.

3. PE *Howi- "sheep" < SH *`[a]w- "Kleinvieh" (present in Egyptian, North Cushitic, West and Central Chadic). Cp. still Proto-North-Caucasian *HowohV "lamb, goat" (Nikolaev and Starostin) and ?Sumerian (udu)u8 "mother sheep" (another reading is us5, Borger). The connection of Egyptian vs. PE has been offered by Bombard and Hodge.

4. PE *skego- "goat", cp. HS *[c]ig- "goat" (in North Omotic, Central and East Chadic), and also North Caucasian *cek(')V "goat, kid". Boisson cites Sumerian seg, sigga, sikka "goat" (not in Borger).

5. PE *lew- "lion", cp. SH *raw-/*raw- "lion" (present in Egyptian, ?Berber, Central and East Chadic).

6. PE *el- "eel or snake", cf. SH *`[i/u]l- "eel, leech, snake" (in Egyptian, East Cushitic, North Omotic).

7. PE *bhey- "bee" < SH *b[i]y- "bee" (in Egyptian, ?North, East Cushitic, ?West Chadic). For Egyptian ~ IE see already Hodge; Gamkrelidze and Ivanov.

8. PE *mel- "honey" < SH *mal- (secondarily *mul-) "honey" (present in Egyptian, East and South Cushitic, Chadic).

9. PE *ap- (?.): Latin apis "bee" < SH *`a[p/f]- "bee, fly" (in Egyptian, South Cushitic).
10. PE *Har- "to plough" < SH *Har- "to plough" (in Semitic [but complemented with *-th], East Cushitic).
Though some of the above parallels are not unknown, our approach to this limited material is new: we propose to identify the PE words as loans from some (not Semitic) branch of Semito-Hamitic (parallel to or older than Proto-Semitic and to be located also in the Near East region), attested also in Sumerian (Boisson), North Caucasian (Militarev and Starostin) and some Kartvelian loans, possibly of the same origin. These linguistic data seem to confirm the homeland theory of Indo-European by Dolgopolsky, Gamkrelidze and Ivanov, etc. (Near East, before IV mill. BC) and that of Semito-Hamitic by Militarev (Near East, before VIII mill. BC).
B. J. Terwiel
Mendez Pinto and Thai History
It has been widely accepted that the exaggerations and inaccuracies in Mendez Pinto's Peregrinacao make that book not particularly suitable as a historical source. Nevertheless, it can be safely assumed, that Pinto lived in Ayutthaya at the end of the reign of King Chairacha in the late 1540s, and that he may well have been in Ayutthaya when the Burmese first besieged the Thai capital.

When we note Pinto's acount of this siege, it would seem that he describes a totally impossible situation, whereby the Burmese conduct themselves as if Ayuthhaya were not a fortified island. It is tempting to dismiss Pinto's description as phantasy.

However, when we take Pinto's description as resting upon eyewitness experience, we must consider the possibility that Ayutthaya defense did at that time not cover the whole island. In that case a reappraisal of indigenous sources and standard views of the extent of the old capital becomes necessary.

It is proposed in this paper that the mental picture that historians have of Ayutthaya during the whole period of its founding in 1351 to its final destruction in 1767 rests almost exclusively upon seventeenth-century descriptions of the city. After assessing the Pinto information it seems likely that in the middle of the sixteenth century the city presented a much less sophisticated appearance and a much simpler defense structure than has been assumed hitherto.

David Testen
Identifying the Amyrgian Scythians
In records identifying the peoples subject to the Achaemenid Empire, the northern Iranian (Scythian/Saka) nomads are routinely characterized using descriptive epithets ("the Saka beyond the Sea," "the Pointed-Capped Saka") rather than ethnonyms. The name of the Scythian people known to Herodotus as the Amurgioi (= Old Persian h-u-ma-va-ra-ga-a, Babylonian Iú-mu-ur-qa-', Elamite Iu-mu-mar-qa-ip), however, has defied a straightforward interpretation. It has long been assumed that the term is a compound containing the name of the well known ritual beverage hauma- (= Avestan haoma-, Sanskrit soma-), but the second element has given rise to little more than contextually motivated guesses ("-making?" "worshipping?").

It is suggested that the name of the Amyrgians may be broken down into comprehensible elements if, rather than trying to trace it back to Proto-Iranian via Old Persian, we interpret it from the point of view of the language of the modern descendants of the Scythians, the Ossetians. The interpretation of the term thus gained reveals interesting parallels to Schmidt's analysis of the depictions of Scythians found among the Persepolis reliefs.

Steve Tinney
Nippur Tablet Types and the Definition of the Sumerian Literary Corpus
Among the problems that beset the understanding of Sumerian literature is that of context. The limited archaeological context available for the pre-war Nippur excavations makes it difficult to treat the Old Babylonian literary texts as anything other than an undifferentiated mass of material.

One possible, partial, solution to this problem is to work through the tablet typology to develop groupings of tablets that may represent the remnants of archives.

This paper will outline the major Nippur literary tablet types, raise the possibility that one group in particular represents a major subdivision in the corpus, and consider the implications of this suggestion.

Shawkat M. Toorawa
Waqwaq revisited and resituated
Although pre-16th c. navigators and cartographers do not mention the Mascarene Islands (Mauritius, Reunion, Rodrigues), Arabists believe they were known in the 12th c. The name given by the Indian Ocean pilot Ibn Majid (d. early 16th c.; author of the Kitab al-fawaid, useful even today) and Arab geographers to the Mascarene region is the point of departure of this paper: an inquiry into the meanings and imaginary geographies of the island(s) of 'al-Waqwaq'.

The limit of early Arab settlement in the western Indian Ocean seems to have been Raphta, near Zanzibar, and in later centuries Sofala, beyond which was believed to be the Bahr al-Zulumat' (Sea of Darkness). Sofala marks the southernmost point of safe navigation, an equivalent of the Cap Non beyond which the Portuguese would not sail for so long. Indeed, it is in names such as Waqwaq, Sofala (cognate with the Arabic for `low'), and `Bahr al-Zulumat' that we find onomastic confirmation of a fabulous geography.

Using Miquel's (1965-75) and Malti-Douglas' (1991) discussions of Waqwaq, North-Coombes' (1979) and Tolmacheva's (1988) scrutiny of evidence regarding it, and my own rereadings of Mas`udi, Idrisi, Buzurg b. Shahriyar and others, I show that Waqwaq is intentionally different ambiguous places at different times. The belief in the contiguity of Africa and China, a cartography necessitating an East-West alignment of Madagascar, is thus explicable. Indeed, Waqwaq has been identified with everything from Japan to Madagascar. This so-called confusion leads Miquel and Malti-Douglas to echo Yaqut and suggest that Waqwaq is (merely) part of the fabulous hold the sea has on sailors' and storytellers' imaginations.

I argue that a cartography informed by a close reading of the texts (and which admits the Mascarenes and even the Atlantic) allows for a more open and meaningful undersanding of the `gigantic, distant, and half-fabulous' Waqwaq.

Marc Van De Mieroop
On the political development in Mesopotamia
The political development in Mesopotamia over the length of its 3000 year long history has been commonly described as a gradual evolution from a "primitive democracy" in late prehistory to an absolute despotism under the Assyrian rulers, a thesis stated most explicitly by Thorkild Jacobsen in the 1940-50's. This talk will discuss the ideological background of this point of view, and present a very different picture where the power and political influence of the citizenry throughout Mesopotamian history will be emphasized.
Theo van den Hout
The Hittite Royal Funerary Ritual and Recent Developments in Archaeology
Since the 1958 edition of the Hethitische Totenrituale by Heinrich Otten the material for this extensive and important text group has increased considerably. Until recently, however, little work has been done on the text since Otten's edition. Moreover, there did not seem to be any really corresponding archaeological material. The known Hittite cemeteries from the historical period most probably belonged to social classes different from the leading ones. With the recent excavations on Nisantepe this situation may now have been changed. Outside the Hittite capital, the monument of king Muwatalli (1295-1274 BC) at Sirkeli has been claimed by some as a possible funerary monument. These new findings can no longer be dismissed when dealing with the Hittite Royal Death Ritual (HRDR). What can be gained from the HRDR in archaeological terms? What is the relation of Nisantepe vis-a-vis Yazilikaya Chamber B? What can the funerary evidence of the so-called Heroic-Burial-type from the Aegean Iron Age contribute to this topic? These questions will be dealt with in the present paper.
David Vanderhooft
An Unpublished Exemplar of Nebuchadnezzar II's Etemenanki Cylinder and the Administrative Geography of the Neo-Babylonian Empire.
Nebuchadnezzar II's Etemenanki inscription is extant only in multiple fragmentary copies. Collation of a long-known but unpublished exemplar in the Harvard Semitic Museum adds about 15 lines to the text, mainly at the end, and allows for its almost complete restoration. The Harvard fragment also completes or adds several names to the cylinder's list of toponyms and officials associated with the building of Etemenanki. Scholars have long acknowledged that the paucity of sources pertaining to Babylon's administration of its provincial territories leaves large gaps in our understanding of how the empire functioned. The list of tributary regions and officials in the Etemenanki cylinder is of some value for clarifying the administrative geography of the Neo-Babylonian empire in the first half of Nebuchadnezzar's reign. It does not fully resolve all of the problems, but when read in conjunction with other inscriptions of Nebuchadnezzar, and with evidence from the Northwest Semitic sphere, it offers a clearer picture of how the royal scribes conceived the administrative geography of the empire. The Babylonians seem to have had a loose system for recording the participation of local and subject regions and officials in domestic building projects. They did not, however, develop a corresponding bureaucratic provincial system for administering the subject regions. Neither is it accurate to say that they inherited and maintained the earlier Neo-Assyrian provincial system.
Leonard van der Kuip
A Thirteenth Century Tibetan History of Indian Buddhist Logic and Epistemology
One of the outstanding features of the Tibetan Buddhist religious tradition is its keen awareness of chronology and the developmental aspects of its intellectual heritage. lt should therefore hardly come as a surprise that Tibetan letters include brief, synoptical surveys of those Indian Buddhist philosophical traditions the relative chronology of whose main protagonists was not always very transparent. In this paper, I propose to examine a mid to late thirteenth century Tibetan work that deals with the development of Indian Buddhist logic and epistemology&emdash;the oldest of its genre known so far&emdash;, and situate it in the context of later cognate works.
Paul E. Walker
The Case of Ibn al-Birdhawn and the Other Guy: Two Maliki Martyrs in History and Hagiology
Scholars have noted the striking difference in the Maliki tabaqat tradition for North Africa between the earliest works by Abu'l-`Arab and al-Khushani, which through not impartial, try nevertheless to be factual and historical, and the later examples such as al-Maliki's Riyad al-nufus and Qadi `Iyad's Madarik and even later the Ma`alim al-iman of al-Dabbagh and Ibn Naji, which are often merely hagiographies. Because the later writers included entries on the earliest figures, it is possible to compare the two approaches for a biography of the same individual.

For this and other reasons the martyrdom of Ibn al-Birdhawn represents an particularly instructive case. Executed at Qayrawan in 296 or 297, this faqih (along with the other guy) were the first Maliki martyrs to the Shiite Fatimids. Their deaths were recorded and commented on in contemporary sources, among them al-Khushani, who knew Ibn al-Birdhawn personally. This man was a professional agitator and baiter of hanafis who therefore despised him. Upon the Fatimid take over, they denounced him, causing the inexperienced new government to put him to death. The other guy suffered a similar fate almost by accident.

In the ensuing period when the Maliki fuqaha' were either directly repressed as a religious policy or languished in a kind of limbo due to lack of official offices and government support, martyrdom and hagiolatry became standard fare in their literature and its subculture which thus expressed an attitude, no longer of the establishment, but now of the righteous underground. Al-Khushani, writing in the mid 4th century, could still remember and therefore envision restoration. By the time of Riyad al-nufus in the 5th century, the Malikis had endured the Shiites so long little of that outward confidence remained.

In the later works, both Ibn al-Birdhawn and the other guy receive generous amounts of attention. Ignoring historical impossibilities, the martyrdom was recast in dramatic form like a stage play. Brought before the Fatimid caliph al-Mahdi, who sits on his throne flanked by the brothers al-Shi`i, the two Malikis must confess that al-Mahdi is himself the apostle of God, which they refuse to do and righteously accept death instead.

Matthew W. Waters
Sorting the Mail: Assyrian correspondence and Neo-Elamite history
Our understanding of the Neo-Elamite period is limited for several reasons, not the least of which is the paucity of indigenous textual material. Elam's secure chronology and its sequence of kings are drawn from Mesopotamian sources. Assyrian royal inscriptions and letters provide the basis from which we extrapolate much of Neo-Elamite history. This Assyrian perspective inevitably skews modern interpretation of Elam. There are significantly fewer complementary Elamite sources to balance the picture, and these inscriptions present their own problems of analysis and interpretation. By necessity, the Assyrian material must be utilized as primary for most aspects of Neo Elamite historical studies.

However, the royal Assyrian correspondence provides the benefit of candid reports on the current political milieu, absent the bombast of the annals. Despite their inherent shortcomings (e.g., fragmentary preservation, lack of dates, and obscure contexts), these letters offer the best hope, at present, for further gains in the research of Elam's political history and foreign relations during the first millennium. This presentation will examine these sources&emdash;in conjunction with information gleaned from the royal inscriptions&emdash;and their relevance to some particular problems in the Neo-Elamite period. Building upon the recent treatment of E. Carter and M. W. Stolper, Elam: Surveys of Political History and Archaeology (1984), this study forms yet one more step in the ongoing attempts to penetrate Neo-Elamite history.

Calvert Watkins
Homer and Hittite revisited: 1) The four quadrants of social appurtenance 2. KUSkursas and aigís
Recent decades have seen a growing recognition of the close interconnections, both thematic and linguistic, between Greece and Anatolia in the second millennium. We may take for granted, from such physical evidence as the boar's tusk helmet graffito or the Aegean sword inscribed in Akkadian by Tudhaliyas II that speakers from these two geographically contiguous regions were certainly in contact, at various times and in various places, during the second millennium and later. I have argued elsewhere for the existence of striking verbal similarities and coincidences between early Greek and Anatolian text passages, including Hittite views of the afterlife, a Luvian song of Istanuwa, and&emdash;as long recognized&emdash;the Hittite Illuyankas myth. This paper argues for two more cases of clear and present Anatolian models for images in Early Greek literature: the "four quadrants of social appurtenance" in the preamble of the Telepinus proclamation, and&emdash;as long suspected&emdash;the Hittite cult symbol of the hunting bag, KUSkursas.
Alex Wayman
Re the Meaning of the Term svabhava in Buddhist Logic
The term svabhava is very important in Buddhism. It will be noticed that it has one kind of usage in the Madhyamika school, another in the rival Yogacara school; and is used in still a different way in Buddhist logic. This term has been the topic of some published papers, e.g., by Steinkellner of Vienna. The reason I had to face the issue of its frequent appearances in these logic texts is that before the coming AOS meeting in Miami I will have submitted to my Delhi publisher the first volume (on texts) of my two called A Millennium of Buddhist Logic, and will be close to finishing the second volume (on topics and opponents). I had to decide about various terms that were often employed, and gradually (indeed, over the years) changed my renditions in the varied contexts of these terms. When I finally decided on the rendition "individual presence" for svabhava in these Buddhist logic texts and associated discussions, I noticed that the translation seemed to clarify each sentence in which the term was found, as included in my MS. My presentation will include some examples, starting with Dharmakirti's Nyayabindu, and will take notice of how certain sentences read with other renditions of this term, e.g., as rendered by Th. Stcherbatsky.
Richard Weissman
St. Guinefort, Kitmir and the The Seven Sleepers: New Evidence, New Theories about Cults of Saintly Dogs
Adaptation of folktale types and motifs from one culture to another is hardly new knowledge. Even the well-known tale of The Seven Sleepers of Ephesus has endured mostly intact despite countless re-editings when retold at different times and at different places. However, the remarkable elasticity of the legend of The Seven Sleepers, illustrated by its adaptability to two parallel religious concepts: Catholic "sanctus" and Islamic "wali," is less well-known. Both religions have reconfigured this tale to suit their own genre of hagiographic exemplars. The salient parallels, however, can lead to false conclusions. New information about their notions of saintly dogs, from late antiquity through the middle ages and beyond, has been produced by updated philological and anthropological research tools. New possibilities about the tale's pre-Christian and pre-Islamic geneses&emdash;not yet definitively authenticated as one and the same&emdash;now exist. There are some recent studies of the sociology, psychology and religiosity of the cults of saints in Catholicism and Islam, but studies of the zoology of these cults are rare. This study is loosely limited to the French Catholic doctrine and folk beliefs and to the Turkish Islamic tradition and folk beliefs from the sixth century through the middle ages. My intention in this study is to explore the proposition that the Catholics and, the Muslims have, in tandem, interpreted and symbolized saintly dogs and The Legend of the Seven Sleepers substantially opposite from each other. A valid question is, "How can a Christian legend also be Islamic?" A more profound questions is, "Why is this legend, with the addition of a saintly dog, in the Koran but not in the Bible?" The conclusion of this study will propose the answer to that question, which is that mistranslations, some deliberate, from Greek and Latin into Arabic, and culture-based misinterpretations, some also deliberate, made this legend more adaptable to Islamic doctrine and to the semiotics of the Koran but more suitable for Christian folk beliefs.
Chlodwig H. Werba
Verba Indo-Arica: Introducing a New WHITNEY
Nearly 115 years ago, at the meeting of the AOS in Boston (May 1882), Professor William Dwight Whitney presented his project of giving "an account, as full as our knowledge permits, of the verbal roots of the [Sanskrit] language" ( JAOS 11 [1885] cxvii). Two years later this project was completed, resulting in the publication of his The Roots, Verb-Forms, and Derivatives of the Sanskrit Language in Leipzig 1885. Since then this practical inventory of the verbal stems and other formations built from 846 roots (given in the order of the Sanskrit `alphabet') which the great American linguist and sanskritist judged to be "authenticable" (loc. cit. cxviii)&emdash;whereas the indigenous grammatical tradition, the mainstream of which came to an end with the redaction of the Paninian 'root-lecture' ( Paniniya Dhatupatha) made by Sayana in 14th century Vijayanagara, counts nearly 2000 (1960 [!])&emdash;was used world-wide and is so still today. Nevertheless, since the mid-sixties at the latest, when the 1st monograph of the school of Erlangen on the Old Indo-Aryan verb, Johanna Narten's Die sigmatischen Aoriste im Veda (Wiesbaden 1964), was published, it became clear to everybody interested in the subject that Whitney's collection stands in urgent need of being emended and complemented, if not to be replaced by an independent opus duly reflecting the immense growth the study of Sanskrit had experienced both in respect to the quantity of texts being available and exploitable by indices (as e.g. Pathak and Chitrao's Word Index to Patañjali's Vyakarana-Mahabhasya [Poona 1927] so masterly put to use in Stanley Insler's dissertation Verbal Paradigms in Patañjali [Yale 1962]) as well as in respect to the quality of their interpretation. It was the founder of the school of Erlangen, the late Professor Karl Hoffmann, himself who, some years after the publication of his epoch-making study Der Injunktiv im Veda (Heidelberg 1967), took up this issue initiating the project of a new Whitney. But due to various reasons this project was discontinued in the late eighties, leaving a huge mass of material the bulk of which is being published in T. Goto's series "Materialien zu einer Liste altindischer Verbalformen" begun in 1990.

At about the same time the present author developed his scheme of a new catalogue classifying the verbal bases of Sanskrit according to 3 groups of parameters: (1) primary - secondary (I-II [based on etymology]), (2) two kinds of Ablaut ( guna/vrddhi [A] - samprasarana [B]) or its absence (C), and (3) the morphophonemics of anit (1), set (2), or vet (3). In the following years he exploited more than 460 texts composed in one of the varieties of Old Indo-Aryan, providing the secondary roots with a full inventory of forms arranged according to the chronological sequence of the different layers of Sanskrit literature in which they occur for the first time, whereas for the majority of the primary ones only a select documentation was compiled, for the simple reason that most of them have been extensively treated in linguistic and philological studies the bibliography of which is given for each and every root. Also included is a section on semantics.

Recently the first part of this new catalogue devoted to the 663 primary roots of the Sanskrit language could be finished and is about to be published under the title: Verba Indo-Arica (VIA). Die primären und sekundären Wurzeln der Sanskrit-Sprache. Pars I: Radices Primariae. It is the object of the present paper to specify in more detail what can be expected of this one-man-compilation.

Raymond Westbrook
mar banî: A Taste of Freedom
This paper sets out to resolve two inter-related problems. The first is that of paramone, the duty of a former slave to continue to serve his former master. First identified in cuneiform sources by P. Koschaker, it was defined by him as a half-free status. We shall seek to demonstrate that paramone was a fully free status, based on contractual obligation.

The second problem is that the meaning "free citizen" generally ascribed to the neo-Babylonian term mar banî has been questioned because of certain anomalous texts where a slave declared a mar banî does not appear to become a free citizen, either because his freedom is revocable by the former master or because he is at the same time dedicated as a temple slave. We shall seek to demonstrate that the slave's new status is free because it is that of paramone, although dedication to a temple upon a future contingency may have the effect of making that freedom only temporary.

Michael Witzel
The Home of the Aryans.
For more than a century the location of the homeland of the Indo-Iranians (Arya) has been discussed, mostly from the point of view of texts, and intermittently also from that of archaeology. However, several significant items of textual testimony have not been included in this discussion. Further, archaeology has recently begun to supply more tangible evidence for the habitat of the early Indo-Iranians. The presentation of this evidence is followed by a discussion of their subsequent habitat in India and Iran according to the earliest texts.
Jamal Edin Zarabozo
Use Of Hadith and Ra'y in the Early Periods of Fiqh
I will discuss the topic as follows:
1. Orientalists' views of this issue:
A. Review of Goldziher
B. Review of Schacht
C. Review of Coulson
D. Reference to other writers

2. Discussion of the evidence related to this question
3. Where the Orientalists strayed in their discussions
4. Conclusions concerning this topic.

Ziony Zevit
Mrs. `Ezer Kenegdo
This paper discusses the various terms applied to Mrs. `Ezer Kenegdo, the first lady of humanity, in Gen 2-4. lt provides new etymologies for three terms that are comprehensible not only within the immediate narrative setting of the garden story but also within the broader contextualization of the story in the Primeval History. Finally, it ventures a concomitant hypothesis bearing on the expulsion of the first family from the garden into the world that disengages the expulsion from the so-called "Fall," and connects it with motifs in the Atrahasis myth.
Tian-Shu Zhu
T'ang Clture in the Gold and Silver of Liao Dynasty
Analyse the patterns,shapes of Liao dynasty's gold and silver wares based on extensive data. Find out their prototypes from T'ang dynasty and what had been simplized by Khitans. Sketch out how Khitans developed their gold and silver vessels grounded on obsorbing or even imitating T'ang culture.

The study of Liao' gold and silver was limited on a lever of introduction of single excavation, before. I am the first one who collect the data all-round. This thesis is an important part of my whole study forcuss on this field.

Michael Zwettler
On the Identity of 'L'SDYN and NZRW in the Namara Inscription
In 1902 Réné Dussaud first published the early fourth-century Nabataeo-Arabic funerary inscription of King MR'LQYS br `MRW (Imra'alqays b. `Amr) from Namara in south-eastern Syria. Line 2 of the epitaph asserts the King's sovereignty over certain tribal groups indicated by the graphic units 'L'SDYN and NZRW. At least five different proposals have since been made as to the original Arabic appellation transcribed by the cursive Nabataean letters of the first unit 'L'SDYN, and even more hypotheses have been advanced as to which group(s) those proposed appellations signified. To these hypotheses I shall add one more. The second unit NZRW has, with very few reservations, been thought to transcribe the Arabic name "Nizar," identified by Dussaud with the eponymous "Nizar b. Ma`add." Through my investigations I have been able to confirm Dussaud's reading NZRW < "Nizar," arriving though at a substantially different identification of the group so named.

The appellations can be taken to have identified conjointly the primary constituents of the well-known tribal confederation of Tanukh. According to Arabic reports sovereignty over Tanukh was assumed (some would say "usurped") by `Amr b. `Adiy, Imra'al-qays's father, after the death of their king, Jadhima al-Abrash. Those constituents, comprising elements of al-Azd and Asad b. Wabara and a group called Nizar ( not the famous eponym), are mentioned in classical and South Arabian sources earlier than the Namara inscription and are explicitly linked together by medieval Islamic scholars, particularly Ibn al-Kalbi. ---