John Bray, ed. 2005. Ladakhi Histories: Local and Regional Perspectives. Selected papers presented at the 9th, 10th and 11th IALS Colloquia. Brill's Tibetan Studies Library. Brill, Leiden. ISBN 90 04 14551 6. 402 pages. (hardback only)

Ladakh’s geographic location between the Himalaya and Karakoram mountains has exposed it to competing political and cultural influences from India, Central Asia and Tibet. This book points to Ladakh’s distinct local identity, but argues that its historical development can best be understood in a wider regional perspective. It contains twenty-five research papers from the international association of Ladakh studies (IALS), and draws on contributions from historians, art historians, linguists and anthropologists. Their sources include Ladakhi historical documents, comparative linguistic research, visual evidence from temple architecture and inscriptions, Mughal biographies, European travel accounts, government records, trade receipts, and local oral tradition. Taken together, the volume provides a much richer view of Ladakhi history than was previously available, and makes a significant contribution to the study of the wider Himalayan region. John Bray is honorary secretary of the International Association of Ladakh Studies (IALS). His publications include a bibliography of Ladakh (Warminister, 1988). His published research has focused on the history of European political and missionary encounters in Tibet and the Himalayan border regions.


List of illustrations


John Bray—Introduction: Locating Ladakhi History

Philip Denwood—Early connections between Ladakh/Baltistan and Amdo/Kham

Bettina Zeisler—On the position of Ladakhi and Balti in the Tibetan language family

Christian Luczanits—The early Buddhist heritage of Ladakh reconsidered

Roberto Vitali—Some conjectures on change and instability during the one hundred years of darkness in the history of la dwags (1280s-1380s)

Neil Howard—sultan zain-ul abidin’s raid into Ladakh

Jigar mohammed—mughal sources on medieval Ladakh

Peter Schwieger—documents on the early history of he-na-ku, a petty chiefdom in Ladakh

Nicola Grist—the history of Islam in Suru

Tashi Stobdan—gyajung nagpo

Peter Marczell—Dr. James G. Gerard’s unfulfilled ambition to visit Ladakh

Peter Marczell—Csoma Kőršsi’s pseudonym

Neil Howard—The development of the boundary between the state of Jammu & Kashmir and British India, and its representation on maps of the Lingti Plain

K. Warikoo—political linkages between Ladakh and eastern Turkestan under the Dogras during the 19th century

John Bray—Early protestant missionary engagement with the Himalayan region and Tibet

Christian Heyde—the early history of the Moravian mission in the Western Himalayas: the life and work of Wilhelm and Maria Heyde

A. H. Francke—schools in Leh. Translated, with an introduction by Gabriele Reifenberg

Poul Pedersen—Prince Peter, polyandry and psychoanalysis

Janet Rizvi—Trade and migrant labour: inflow of resources at the grassroots

Jacqueline Fewkes & Abdul Nasir Khan— Social networks and transnational trade in early 20th century Ladakh

Nawang Tsering Shakspo—the life and times of geshe ye-shes-don-grup

Erberto lo Bue—lives and works of traditional Buddhist artists in 20th century Ladakh. A preliminary account

Fernanda Pirie—the impermanence of power: village politics in Ladakh, Tibet and Nepal



• In print 2005
• ISBN 90 04 14551 6
• Hardback (x, 406 pp.)
• List price Eur 95,- / us$ 136,-
• Special IALS member price Eur 71,- / US$ 102,-
• Brill’s Tibetan Studies Library, 9