Alla Sizova discusses the role of translation activities in the spread of Buddhism in the 12th century and outlines the extent of Tibetan influence on the Tangut culture.
In the 12th century the spread of Buddhism in the Tangut Empire, including its translation and publication activities, reached its peak. From the colophons of the surviving texts, we learn that the numerous Buddhist texts in Tangut, Chinese and Tibetan languages were published by the thousands for distribution among the participants of the national Dharma assemblies.
At present, however, we have only one example of such an edition in all the three languages, that survived to our time. The Tibetan book is of particular importance because until recently no earlier printed works in the Tibetan language were found.
In my talk, I will outline the extent of the Tibetan influence on the Tangut culture, which will serve as a background for the introduction of this truly unique example of printing. Some aspects of the history of this text have already been explored in previous studies. I will try to summarize all the results, clarify codicological questions and present new results of my research.