Selections from the Naxi Manuscript Collection
Access to the Naxi collection will be closed indefinitely to researchers beginning July 3, 2013. This action is necessary in order to undertake needed conservation of this rare, fragile collection. We apologize for this inconvenience; however the long term preservation of the Library’s Naxi materials is of paramount importance.
Asian Division is
pleased to announce that Selections from the Naxi Manuscript
Collection is available as of June 02, 2004
Dr. Mi Chu
Wiens of the Asian Division started the Naxi Project in 1998 with
a grant from the Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation for three years (1998-2001),
and worked with the Library's Digital Team for this website since
The Naxi collection contains documents that detailed
the unique cosmology of the Naxi people of the Yunnan Province
were written by Naxi shamanistic priests in what is the only living
pictographic language in the world. These manuscripts illustrate
a range of Naxi myths and legends including the story of the creation
of the world, sacrifice to the Serpent King and other principle
gods, accounts of Naxi warriors and other people of high social
standing ascending to the realm of deities, and love-suicide stories.
Also available in this online collection is the annotated catalog
of the entire Library's
Naxi manuscript collection, a 39-½ foot scroll used in
funerary ceremonies, and translations
Joseph Rock of two of the manuscripts.
The Naxi Manuscript Collection is the first Area Studies LC-only
Global Gateway collection. It was done using LC resources, with
with a foreign
library. Its interface is presented in English
only and resembles the American Memory Collections in
look and design.