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Italian Scholars on India, vol. I

General Editor: Raffaele Torella

New Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, 2021


Cover, Foreword, Preface, Table of contents are available here.

From the Foreword by Vincenzo de Luca, Ambassador of Italy to India:

The pages that follow are the result of an idea that sparked in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic in late 2020. With this work, we wanted to collect the most important studies produced in recent years by Italian scholars on India and transform them into a series of vol- umes that, eventually, the Indian and International audience would appreciate and value.
This is the first volume of a series that will follow. Once complet- ed, the whole project will cover the main fields of Italian scholarship on India: classical Indology, India’s history and economics, arts. The work will be completed with the translation into English of the biog- raphy, by Alice Crisanti, of one of the most important Indologist of the XX century, Giuseppe Tucci. […]

From the Preface, by Raffaele Torella:

The aim of this book is not to give an account of the history of Italy’s scholarly interest in India, since the history of Italian Indology is indeed a very complex and fascinating subject, but too vast to be treated here. Suffice it to say that, apart from isolated forerunners – such as the Florentine merchant Filippo Sassetti, the XVI c. author of a copious correspondence from India in which we find the first steps of scientific Indology – the first chair of indological subjects was estab- lished at Turin University in 1852 and enthrusted to Gaspare Gorresio. The fame of Gorresio remains linked to an incredible enterprise, the first ever critical edition of Gauḍa recension of the Rāmāyaṇa (carried out by a single scholar!). The study of Indology and Sanskrit was then established at Florence University in 1859 and at Rome Sapienza in 1866.
Among the eminent scholars who were the remote ancestors of contemporary Italian indology, we should mention at least Angelo De Gubernatis, Luigi Suali, Luigi Pio Tessitori and Carlo Formichi. […]

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