Unexpectedly, yet another substantial discovery has been made during the lockdown in India. I had ordered a scanned copy of a single text from a major manuscript library, and they kindly delivered it in a CD. Upon going through the images, I noticed that instead of one, there were various texts in the same folder under the same entry. One of the additional texts was Sri Baladeva Vidyabhusana’s Aisvarya-kadambini, but besides the original verses there was an extensive Sanskrit commentary that remains unpublished and whose existence has not been mentioned in any of the lists of works that I have come across thus far. The identity of the commentator will be revealed in due time.
As I had mentioned earlier, an increasing number of libraries have started to make books and manuscripts available online, which facilitates research work in multiple ways. Among the materials collected in the last few months are lists and catalogues of nearly 200,000 manuscripts from various places. A few important libraries are about to release new parts of their catalogues, thus giving hope that more lost texts may come to light.
Although travel in India is still difficult at the moment and some states have imposed restrictions, I am planning to resume research expeditions soon, mostly to consult a few more manuscript copies to consolidate the readings of the critical editions that will be published next.
The main objectives of the Baladeva Vidyabhusana Research Project are as follows:
- Search for lost manuscripts (such as the complete commentaries on the ten Upanisads and the Six Sandarbhasof Jiva Gosvami).
- Digitally preserve manuscripts currently existing in different libraries.
- Digitally preserve all editions of Vidyabhusana’s books.
- Digitally preserve articles written about Vidyabhusana.
- Type the texts in digital Unicode, which can be converted into Devanagari, Bengali characters, etc.
- Prepare a critical edition of each work.
- Translate all the works into English.
- Publish all translations with the original Devanagari text.
- Investigate and verify existent biographical data on Vidyabhusana.
- Publish a comprehensive biographical work.
For more details, inquiries, donations, and to view a sample of the discovered manuscript, the readers may visit the following page: