Monthly Archives: June 2013

Khmer manuscripts online

A very useful online resource for the study and research on manuscripts in Khmer and Pali languages is

This platform is the outcome of a long-term research, digitisation and preservation project carried out by the EFEO in collaboration with Buddhist temples in Cambodia and many Cambodian researchers and monks. The emphasis was on conservation of the manuscripts, preparation of a catalogue and digitisation. The digitisation and online publication of numerous manuscripts makes it possible to study the various facets of the Khmer manuscripts tradition as well as Buddhist and traditional literature in Cambodia.

g OR14068 folio 3

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International Conference of the Asian Association for Lexicography

The 8th International Conference of the Asian Association for Lexicography will be held in Kuta on the island of Bali, on 20-22 August 2013.

The conference is organized by the Faculty of Humanities, Airlangga University, and the proceedings will be printed and published by Airlangga University Press.

The conference will look at the features and roles of lexicography and dictionaries in the information age.

The participants will include lexicographers, linguists, translators, lecturers, teachers, as well as students who are interested in lexicography and dictionaries.

More detailed information can be found on the conference homepage .

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Hanoi – Spirit of Place

A photo exhibition by John Ramsden, a British diplomat to Vietnam 1980-83, dedicated to Hanoi in the 1980s was on display for a couple of days last month in London. A selection of rare photographs showed everyday life in Hanoi when Vietnam was still very isolated from the Western world and only few foreigners had the opportunity to travel or work there. The exhibition is part of a bigger project that aims to digitise Ramsden’s over 1700 photographs and make them available to a wider audience. A small selection of photographs and more information about the project is available at .

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Exhibition: Silver from the Malay World

15 July 2013 – 16 March 2014 V&A Museum London, UK

A special display at the V&A Museum in London explores the rich traditions of silver in the Malay world. Intricate ornament drawn from geometry and nature decorates dining vessels, clothing accessories and ceremonial regalia.

Silver from the Malay World features rarely seen collections acquired by three prominent British colonial administrators, who were stationed in British Malaya at the turn of the 20th century. The display also shows unique Malay metalwork: electrotype copies of the Perak royal regalia commissioned by the Museum in 1887.
More information at:

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Photo documentation of a Lantien ordination ceremony

Photographer Kees Sprengers, who is well known for his photographic documentations of social life in Laos, particularly of ethnic minority groups, has made vailable online a collection of over 200 photographs taken during a Lantien ordination ceremony in 2009 in Northern Laos’ Luang Namtha Province. The gallery can be viewed online and there are also links to Kees Sprengers’ other photo collections.

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“Understanding Buddhist Death” in Films

The Centre for Buddhist Studies, Bristol University, carried out a major research project on the Understanding of Buddhist Death from 2007-11. The outcome of the project are not only numerous publications, but also a range of ethnographic films documenting death rituals in Laos, Thailand and China. The main focus, however, is on death rituals and ceremonies in Laos.

The project was an interdisciplinary collaboration between anthropologists and experts in Religious Studies. It was the first comparative academic study of Buddhist death rituals in these two very distinct cultural areas resulting in the production of ethnographic films. Some of the chosen locations and rituals, such as the festivals for the dead in Laos and China, have not been documented and published before.
An overview and links to the films can be found on the Understanding Buddhist Death Project homepage.

Offering trays at a Buddhist temple in Laos. Source:

Offering trays at a Buddhist temple in Laos. Source:

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Thai medical treatise from the 19th century

An interesting article about a Thai medical treatise from the 19th century can be found on the British Library’s Asian and African Studies Blog. The article includes illustrations from the original manuscript as well as a link to a full text electronic version of the manuscript.

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Filed under Manuscripts, Thailand