Fonds 1933 - Tuppil Venkatacharya fonds

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Reference code

UTA 1933


Tuppil Venkatacharya fonds


  • [1922?] – 2006 (Creation)

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Extent and medium

3.67m of textual records (10 boxes)
45 VHS cassettes
60 cassette tapes

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Name of creator


Biographical history

Prof. Tuppil Venkatacharya (1924-2015) was Professor Emeritus at the University of Toronto and a scholar of Sanskrit and South Asian studies. His academic work focused on the grammatical study of Sanskrit in the Pāṇinian system and the exposition of various Sanskrit texts.

Born in Tirupati, India, Prof. Venkatacharya attended the Madras University (Vyakarana Siromani, 1944; B.A., 1949) and the University of Calcutta University, where he received his M.A. in 1952. Following his studies, Venkatacharya worked as both a researcher and lecturer at institutions including Nalanda University (1955 -1958) and Gauhati University (1958 - 1961). In 1961, he was invited to work with Professor Giuseppe Tucci at Rome’s Istituto per il Medio ed Estremo Oriente and while in this position also lectured at the Sapienza University of Rome.

In 1963, Prof. Venkatacharya was invited as Assistant Professor to lecture at the University of Toronto within the Department of East Asian Studies. While teaching in various departments, including Sanskrit and Indian Studies, Linguistics, and the Centre for South Asian Studies, Prof. Venkatacharya spent the following 28 years at the University of Toronto. He was awarded the distinction of Professor Emeritus in 1989 and retired from teaching in 1991. In 1996, he received an honorary degree from Rashtriya Sanskrit Vidyapeetha (Deemed University) in Tirupati.

Prof. Venkatacharya published multiple books where he edited and provided extensive commentary on early Sanskrit manuscripts. These texts included the Krsnacarita of Agastyapandita, the Ubhayabhisarika, and Nalakirtikaumudi of Agastyapandita. The works that Venkatacharya studied ranged in content from literature and poetry to dramatic and dramaturgical works, and represented multiple scripts and languages including Telugu, Pali, and Devanagari. His writing and reviews are also found in academic publications from both North America and overseas. In both 1989 and 1991, Venkatacharya donated extensive collections of palm-leaf and paper manuscripts to the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library at the University of Toronto (Collection MS291).

Active within Toronto’s South Asian community, Prof. Venkatacharya participated in several community based organizations. In particular, he was involved with the Hindu Institute of Learning as well as teaching a Saturday Sanskrit class out of his home for multiple years.

Prof. Venkatacharya was married to Vijaya Venkatacharya and is survived by two sons, Hari and Patañjali.

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Fonds consists of material documenting the professional and personal life of Prof. Tuppil Venkatacharya. Records cover his collection and research of Sanskrit literature through correspondence, typescripts, annotated texts, translations and transliterations, and recordings of some of his academic presentations. Also included in the material is documentation of the community Sanskrit classes taught by the scholar (Series 10) as well as his and his wife’s, Vijaya Venkatacharya’s, involvement in Toronto’s South Asian community. Fonds also includes family correspondence and some biographical material regarding Venkatacharya’s education and positions held at the University of Toronto and other institutions. Please see series descriptions for additional details.

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All files are open, with the exception of the files listed below. Please see series descriptions for additional information.

  • Series 2 (Chronological files): B2017-0035/002(05), (11), (17)
  • Series 3 (Correspondence): B2017-0035/004(01), (06), (10)
  • Series 5 (Translation and research): B2017-0035/007(13), /008(14)
  • Series 6 (Teaching): B2017-0035/009(04) – (08)
  • Series 9 (Collected manuscripts): B2017-0035/009(25)

Boxes are stored off-site. Please allow 2-3 business days for retrieval. Materials may be consulted in the Archives Reading Room. Contact the University Archives for further information.

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Original finding aid by Daniela Ansovini
Added to AtoM by Daniela Ansovini, September 2018




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