© President and Fellows of Harvard College
Call No.: hyl00002
Repository: Harvard-Yenching Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Title: Naxi manuscripts collection,
Date(s): 1826-1910 and undated.
Quantity: 1 collection (598 manuscripts, 3 funereal scrolls)
Language of materials: Manuscripts in Naxi language.
Abstract: Collection of pictographic manuscripts, used in performing religious rituals by the Naxi community.
Additional Naxi manuscripts are held by the Library of Congress.
The Naxi (Chinese people) are an ethnic minority in the northwestern part of Yunnan Province in China, near the borders of Tibet and Burma. The population is estimated to be around 250,000, and made up largely of farmers and traders. The Naxi language is the only remaining living pictographic language today.
The collection is organized by subject into the following series:
- A. Worship to Dongba Shiluo
- B. Worship of the Dragon King
- C. Worship to the Wind
- D. Prayers for Long Life
- E. Worship for the Worthy
- F. God of Victory
- G. Worship to the House Gods
- H. For the Living
- I. Remove Filthiness
- J. Closing the Door to Death
- K. Venerating the Dead
- L. Divination
- M. Lingza Scripture
This collection contains 598 ceremonial manuscripts and 3 funereal scrolls written in a pictographic script. Often, during the religious rituals, the edges of the books are burned, resulting in damage to the manuscript. Only 21 of the manuscripts are dated, the earliest being from 1826 and the latest from 1910.