BLONAY, Godefroy de, baron

BLONAY, Godefroy Jean Henry Louis de, baron. Niederschoenthal, Füllingsdorf (Basel-Land) 25.7.1869 — Biskra, Algeria 14.2.1937. Swiss Indologist. Born in his father’s (baron Gustave Louis de Bl.) castle, Château de Grandson, in an old Vaudian family, whose ancestor had founded the castle of Blonay in Vaud in c. 1175, mother was Marie Ringwald. Studies of Egyptology and Indology in Paris, É.P.H.É. (diplome 1894 under Lévi), returned to Vaud c. 1900. Lived as a wealthy private scholar until 1916, when he obtained a docentship (PD) of Indology at University of Neuchâtel (until 1929). At his father’s death he inherited the castle and lived there as a private scholar, apparently until his death (still there in 1934). In 1899-1937 the Swiss member of the International Olympic Committee. Married 1900 Elisabeth Sophie de Salis-Soglio (1880–1967), three sons and one daughter.

Publications: With La Vallée Poussin: “Contes Bouddhiques”, RHR 26, 1892, 180-200; 29, 1894, 195-211 & 329-337 (transl. from the Dhammapada Commentary).

– “Note sur un manuscrit sanscrit appartenent à la Société asiatique”, JA 9:2, 1893, 369-372 (a collection of Dhâraṇīs); “Histoire de Saṇaṁ Kumâra, conte Mahârâṣṭrî”, RHR 31, 1895, 29-41 (Jacoby 20-28); a few reviews.

Matériaux pour servir à l’histoire de la déesse Buddhique Tārā. 15+65 p. É.P.H.É., B.d’É. 107. P. 1895; article on the same in Mélanges S. Lévi 1911, 35-39.

Aperçu sur l’état de l’indianisme. Leçon d’inauguration. 32 p. P. 1916.

Sources: Briefly in Hist.-Biogr. Lex. d. Schw. 2, and in Schweizerisches Geschlechtsbuch 5, 1933, 40; K. Wendl in Web HistLexSchweiz; dates and family in Europäische Stammtafeln N.F. 15, Marburg 1993, Tf. 26; lists of members of the Société de Ling.; Wikipedia with photo (mainly information on Olympic history, French version offers more personal details).

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