ARIS, Michael Vaillancourt. Havana, Cuba 7.3.1946 — Oxford 27.3.1999. British Tibetan Scholar, Specialist of Bhutan. Son of English father (John A.) and Canadian French mother (Josette Vaillancourt), one of twins (brother Anthony A.). B.A. 1967 Durham. In 1967–73 private tutor of royal children of Bhutan. PG studies at S.O.A.S. in 1974-78. Ph.D. 1978 London. From 1976 taught as Lecturer in Asian History at St,John’s, later at St.Anthony’s College (both of Oxford University), living in Richmond, Surrey. Married in 1972 with the Burmese Human Rights ﬁghter Aung San Suu Kyi (1945– ), one daughter and one son. Died in prostate cancer.
Publications: “The admonition of the thunderbolt cannon-ball and its place in the Bhutanese New Year festival”, BSOAS 39, 1976, 601-635, 1 pl.
– Bhutan. The early history of a Himalayan Kingdom. 145 p. Warminster 1979; Sources for the history of Bhutan. 203 p. Wiener Studien zur Tibetologie und Buddhismuskunde 14. Vienna 1986.
– Hidden treasures and secret lives. A study of Pema lingpa (1450–1521) and the Sixth Dalai Lama (1683–1706). 11+273 p. Delhi & London 1989.
– Lamas, princes, and brigands: Joseph Rock’s photographs of the Tibetan borderlands of China. 36 p. 120 pl. of photos. N.Y. 1992 (a catalogue).
– The Raven Crown: the origins of Buddhist monarchy in Bhutan. 160 p. ill. L. 1994.