Page:Sacred Books of the East - Volume 1.djvu/68

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lviii
UPANISHADS.

all who took an interest in the religious literature of India. It is true that under Akbar's reign (1556–1586) similar translations had been prepared[1], but neither those nor the translations of Dârâ Shukoh attracted the attention of European scholars till the year 1775. In that year Anquetil Duperron, the famous traveller and discoverer of the Zend-avesta, received one MS. of the Persian translation of the Upanishads, sent to him by M. Gentil, the French resident at the court of Shuja ud daula, and brought to France by M. Bernier. After receiving another MS., Anquetil Duperron collated the two, and translated the Persian translation[2] into French (not published), and into Latin. That Latin translation was published in 1801 and 1802, under the title of 'Oupnek'hat, id est, Secretum tegendum: opus ipsa in India rarissimum, continens antiquam et arcanam, seu theologicam et philosophicam doctrinam, e quatuor sacris Indorum libris Rak baid, Djedjer baid, Sam baid, Athrban baid excerptam; ad verbum, e Persico idiomate, Samkreticis vocabulis intermixto, in Latinum conversum: Dissertationibus et Annotationibus difficiliora explanantibus, illustratum: studio et opera Anquetil Duperron, Indicopleustæ. Argentorati, typis et impensis fratrum Levrault, vol. i, 1801; vol. ii, 1802[3].'

This translation, though it attracted considerable interest among scholars, was written in so utterly unintelligible a style, that it required the lynxlike perspicacity of an intre-


  1. M. M., Introduction to the Science of Religion, p. 79.
  2. Several other MSS. of this translation have since come to light; one at Oxford, Codices Wilsoniani, 399 and 400. Anquetil Duperron gives the following title of the Persian translation: 'Hanc interpretationem τῶυ Oupnekhathai quorumvis quatuor librorum Beid, quod, designatum cum secreto magno (per secretum magnum) est, et integram cognitionem luminis luminum, hic Fakir sine tristitia (Sultan) Mohammed Dara Schakoh ipse, cum significatione recta, cum sinceritate, in tempore sex mensium (postremo die, secundo του Schonbeh, vigesimo) sexto mensis του Ramazzan, anno 1067 του Hedjri (Christi, 1657) in urbe Delhi, in mansione nakhe noudeh, cum absolutione ad finem fecit pervenire.' The MS. was copied by Âtma Ram in the year 1767 a.d. Anquetil Duperron adds: 'Absolutum est hoc Apograph urn versionis Latinse τωυ quinquaginta Oupnekhatha, ad verbum, e Persico idiomate, Samskreticis vocabulis intermixto, facts, die 9 Octobris, 1796, 18 Brumaire, anni 4, Reipublic. Gall. Parisiis.'
  3. M. M., History of Ancient Sanskrit Literature, second edition, p. 325.