Edit: I now have a complete Chinese text edited by Yanagida and a translation into Japanese by Cheng.

I wonder if anyone has the time and enthusiasm to transcribe the handwriting on this document? https://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/btv1b83026045/f1.highres

enter image description here

This image shows the whole of what's left, part of a 7th century commentary on the Heart Sutra that was part of the cache of texts found at Dunhuang (now in the Bibliotheque Nationale de France: Catalogue no. Pelliot Chinois 4940).

This is one of the oldest commentaries but to my knowledge this text has never been studied in the English-speaking world (there are three other damage manuscripts). As far as I know there are no published transcriptions, so the aim would to publish (eventually). Trouble is, I can't read handwritten Chinese very well, so I'm hoping to crowdsource a transcription.

The posted image is probably not very clear, but there is a good hi res version if you follow the link.

  • 1
    is there any deadline? i might do it when i’ve time 😸 Commented Jun 4 at 15:20
  • Buddhas know no time: take your time! I would like a copy too, please!
    – Pedroski
    Commented Jun 4 at 15:31
  • 1
    @Pedroski, life is short, particularly for an aged lunatic 😹 Commented Jun 4 at 15:59
  • No deadline. But you've already solved it!
    – Jayarava
    Commented Jun 5 at 6:55

1 Answer 1


variant characters not yet “corrected”

般若波羅蜜多心經䟽 資州詵禪師x





take a break now, stay tuned 😼

well, i found that there’s a japanese pdf contained the above text (most likely):


ok, some characters, i disagreed with the linked pdf 😺

here’s the associated screenshots:

enter image description here

enter image description here

enter image description here

  • This is brilliant. Thank you so much.
    – Jayarava
    Commented Jun 5 at 5:58
  • The text of the commentary is in Part One of the 3-part article. This isn't online with the other parts, but I can get it from the library. repo.komazawa-u.ac.jp/opac/repository/all/search/simple/…
    – Jayarava
    Commented Jun 5 at 6:56
  • @Jayarava , there’re significant difference between the pelliot chinois 4940 & 駒澤大學‘s pdf 🙀 故知万靈无像・而眾像之宗・妙理无言・抑乃群言而為本 vs 故知万靈无像・而眾像之宗・妙理无言・抑乃群言本. semantically, the verse of the pdf is more “smooth / natural”; imo 😸 Commented Jun 5 at 14:00
  • Yeah. He's translating from an edition created in 1972 by Yanagida based on four manuscripts from Dunhuang. I'm hoping to get hold of this also to get the variant readings. Thanks again.
    – Jayarava
    Commented Jun 5 at 16:01
  • I have now posted the Chinese text with a translation into Japanese on my academia page: academia.edu/120669748/…
    – Jayarava
    Commented Jun 7 at 8:35

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.