A SAGE Journal


Phonetic interchange and interchangeable characters in a Tangut vocabulary

Yingxin Sun

发布时间:2023-07-02    点击次数:


The famous phenomenon of ‘phonetic interchange’ in Chinese philology also occurred in Tangut scriptures. In various manuscripts and xylographs, the author or transcriber may have borrowed a phonetically related character to substitute for the original. The borrowings are not only absolute homonyms, but also show some slight distinctions in their initials or finals. In a recently discovered Tangut philological work, there is a vocabulary of over 2000 interchangeable characters enumerated in homonymic groups, which presents phonetic distinctions between Tangut oral speech and the orthodox rhyme dictionaries, and contributes to the identification of knotty characters encountered in deciphering the Tangut Buddhist texts.

【关键词】Buddhist scripture, homonym interchange, phonetics, Tangut, Xixia

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