Ivan Minayev

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Ivan Pavlovich Minayev or Minayeff (Иван Павлович Минаев; 21 October 1840 – 13 June 1890) was the first Russian Indologist whose disciples included Serge Oldenburg, F. Th. Stcherbatsky, and Dmitry Kudryavsky.

As a student of Vasily Vasiliev at the University of Saint Petersburg he developed an interest in Pali literature and went abroad to prepare a catalogue of Pali manuscripts at the British Museum and the Bibliothèque Nationale (still unpublished). His Russian-language Pali grammar (1872) was soon translated into French (1874) and English (1882).[1]

Minayev's magnum opus, Buddhism: Untersuchungen und Materialien, was printed in 1887. "Minaev was almost the first European orientalist... to feel that the study of Buddhism and Pali was a must for the proper understanding of ancient Indian history and society".[2]

As a member of the Russian Geographical Society he travelled in India and Burma in 1874—75, 1880, and 1885—86. His travel journals were published in English in 1958 and 1970.


  1. ^ Gregory D. Alles. Religious Studies: A Global View. Routledge, 2007. Page 55.
  2. ^ Quoted from: The Indo-Asian Culture, Volume 18. Indian Council for Cultural Relations, 1969. Page 64.