Gesariada

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Gesariada

 

(full title: The Story of Gesar-Khan, Ruler of Ten Lands of the World), an epic cycle of oral and written tales about Gesar-Khan, which were widely known in Central and East Asia. The epic took on a definitive form in the 16th to 17th centuries. There are Tibetan and Mongolian prose versions and a Buriat verse version of the Gesariada. The basic content of the many versions is the struggle of the enlightened and brave ruler of the land of Amdo in northeastern Tibet against evil and social injustice. The hero of the epic is Gesar, a fantastic hero who is called “the eradicator of ten evils in ten lands of the world.” The Gesariada reflects the dreams of the people about an ideal kingdom and a just ruler. The first seven songs of the Buriat version reveal anti-Lamaist motifs. The Gesariada contains extensive data about shamanist cosmogony.

EDITIONS

Geseriada. Translated and with introductory article and commentary by S. A. Kozin. Moscow-Leningrad, 1935. (Contains a bibliography.)
Geser: Buriatskii geroicheskii epos. Translated from Buriat by S. Lipkin. (Summary text by Namzhila Baldano. Moscow. 1968.)

REFERENCES

Damdinsuren, Ts. I storicheskie korni Geseriady. Moscow. 1957.
Mikhailov, G. I. “Geseriada.” Sovetskaia etnografiia, 1955. no. 1.
Stein, R. A. Recherches sur l’épopée et le barde au Tibet. Paris. 1959.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.