Hendrik Wilhelm (Henk) Bodewitz

1939 – 2022
Sanskrit, Vedic
Vedism, Hinduism

Curriculum vitae

1939born in Gramsbergen on October 13
1952-1958gymnasium A, Coevorden
1963BA classical languages, Utrecht University
1966MA Indo-Iranian studies, Utrecht University
1966-1969assistant professor in Sanskrit, Utrecht University
1969-1976associate professor in Sanskrit, Leiden University
1973PhD under the supervision of Jan Gonda, Utrecht University
1976-1992full professor in Sanskrit at Utrecht University
1992-2002full professor in Sanskrit at Leiden University
2002-2022emeritus professor
2022passed away in Utrecht on August 18

Special activities and positions

  • Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Utrecht University, 1980-1982 and 1984-1986
  • Chairman of WOTRO Science for Global Development (NWO), 1993-1995
  • Editor of the Indo-Iranian Journal, 1990-2002
  • Editor Gonda Indological Studies, 1993-
  • Co-editor Groningen Oriental Studies, 1993-
  • Member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, 1987-
  • Founder member of the Academia Europaea (European Academy)


  • Griffiths, A. and J.E.M. Houben, “H.W. Bodewitz: bibliography 1969-2004,” [publ. on the occasion of his sixty-fifth birthday]. IIJ 47,2 (2004): 121-131.


c.1965  Translation from the Latin: David Millius, Oriental miscellany: [the sections on Hindustani from Dissertationes Selectae], s.l. – Unpublished typoscript.
Johan Josua Ketelaar, Instruction in Persian and Hindostani with their declensions and coniugations, as well as a comparison of Hindostani and Dutch measures and weights, together with the explanation of some Moorish names etc. [partial translation from the Dutch original, an unpublished manuscript from 1698], [s.l.]. Unpublished typoscript.
1969 “Der Vers vicakṣaṇād ṛtavo … (JB. 1, 18; 1, 50; KauṣU. 1, 2).” ZDMG Supplementa 1,3: 843-848.
1973  Jaiminīya Brāhmaṇa I, 1-65: translation and commentary, with a study: Agnihotra and Prāṇāgnihotra , Leiden. – PhD thesis Utrecht; also published as Orientalia Rheno-Traiectina 17.
1974  “Vedic anuṣṭhú and anuṣṭh(u)yā́.” IIJ 16: 1-17.
“Vedic dhāvayati ‘to drive’.” IIJ 16: 81-95.
“Gab es damals auch Dyumnas? Die Weltentstehung nach dem Jaiminīya Brāhmaṇa.” ZDMG Supplementa 2: 292-298.
1976  The daily evening and morning offering (Agnihotra) according to the Brāhmaṇas, Leiden (Orientalia Rheno-Traiectina 21). – Reprint Delhi 2003.
Review of: K. Mylius, Wörterbuch Sanskrit-Deutsch, Leipzig 1975. IIJ 18: 114-116.
1977  “Notes on the Jaiminīya Brāhmaṇa.” JRAS 109: 150-157.
1978  “Atharvaveda Saṃhitā 3, 12: the building of a house.” ABORI 58-59: Diamond Jubilee Volume (1977-1978): 59-68.
Vedische voorstellingen omtrent de “ziel”, Leiden. – Rede uitgesproken bij de aanvaarding van het ambt van gewoon hoogleraar in het Sanskrit en de Indo-Europese taalwetenschap aan de Rijksuniversiteit te Utrecht op maandag 20 november 1978.
Review of: K.P. Jog, The Vimalodayamālā of Jayantasvāmin, Poona 1974. OLZ 73: 392-394.
1979  “The raising of the central pillar (made of Udumbara wood) of the Sadas hut by the Udgātṛ according to Jaiminīya Brāhmaṇa I, 70-72.” In: J.P. Sinha (ed.), Ludwik Sternbach felicitation volume, Lucknow, pp. 77-82.
1980  Review of: J. Gonda, Selected Studies I-V, Leiden 1975. OLZ 75: 68-70.
Review of: J. Gonda, Hymns of the Ṛgveda not employed in the solemn ritual, Amsterdam 1980. IIJ 22: 149-151.
Review of: A. Wezler, Die wahren “Speiseresteesser” (Skt. vighasāśin), Wiesbaden 1978. WZKS 24: 239-242.
1981  “De Veda’s.” In: André Klukhuhn (samensteller), De oude boeken: Studium Generale – voorjaar 1981, R.U. Utrecht, pp. 11-29.
“[The] Netherlands.” In: R.N. Dandekar (ed.), Sanskrit studies outside India, 1979-1981: International Association of Sanskrit Studies, Fifth World Sanskrit conference, Varanasi, India, October, 21-26, 1981 , Delhi, pp. 73-77.
1982  “Ṛgveda 10, 146: the hymn to Araṇyānī.” In: Keshav Ram Pal (ed.), Dr D.N. Shastri felicitation volume: indological studies presented to dr Dharmendra Nath Shastri in the 85th year of his life by his students, admirers and friends , Ghaziabad, pp. 3-15.
“The ‘Marriage’ of heaven and earth (JB. 1, 145-146; PB. 7, 10, 1-9; AB. 4, 27, 5-10).” WZKS 26: 23-36.
“The waters in Vedic cosmic classifications.” IT 10: 45-54.
Review of: K.P. Aithal, Āśvalāyanagṛhyasūtrabhāṣya, Madras 1980. IIJ 24: 305-306.
Review of: W. Schwarz und O.E. Pfeiffer, Rückläufiges Wörterbuch des Altindischen = Reverse index of old Indian, Lfg. 4, Wiesbaden 1978. WZKS 26: 206-207.
Review of: H. Brinkhaus, Die altindischen Mischkastensysteme, Wiesbaden 1978. WZKS 26: 213-216.
Review of: K.V. Abhyankar and G.V. Devasthali (eds), Vedavikṛtilakṣaṇasaṃgraha, Poona 1978. WZKS 26: 216-217.
1983  “Jaiminīya Brāhmaṇa I, 153-155 on the Kāleya Sāman.” In: K.S. Ramamurthy (ed.), Surabhi: Sreekrishna Sarma felicitation volume, Tirupati, pp. 179-191.
“The fourth priest (the Brahmán) in Vedic ritual.” In: Ria Kloppenborg (ed.), Selected studies on ritual in the Indian religions: essays to D.J. Hoens, Leiden, pp. 33-68.
Review of: W. Johnson, Poetry and speculation of the Ṛg Veda, Berkeley 1980. IIJ 25: 277-279.
1984  “What did Indra do with the Yatis?” In: S.D. Joshi (ed.), Amṛtadhārā: R.N. Dandekar felicitation volume, Delhi, pp. 65-72.
Review of: E. Brucker, Die spätvedische Kulturepoche nach den Quellen der Śrauta-, Gṛhya- und Dharmasūtras: der Siedlungsraum, Wiesbaden 1980. IIJ 27, 207-210.
1985  “Yama”s second boon in the Kaṭha Upaniṣad.” WZKS 29: 5-26.
Review of: W. Rau, Zur vedischen Altertumskunde, Wiesbaden 1983. Kratylos 29 (1984-1985): 164-166.
1986  “Oudindische visionaire literatuur.” In: R.E.V. Stuip en C. Vellekoop (eds), Visioenen, Utrecht, pp. 9-23.
“The cosmic, cyclical dying (parimara): Aitareya Brāhmaṇa 8,28 and Kauṣītaki Upaniṣad 2,11-12.” In: W. Morgenroth (ed.), Sanskrit and world culture: proceedings of the 4th world Sanskrit conference of the International Association of Sanskrit Studies, Weimar, May 23-30, 1979, Berlin (Schriften zur Geschichte und Kultur des Alten Orients 18), pp. 438-443.
“Emendations in Jaiminīya Brāhmaṇa I, 66-104.” Ṛtam 16-18 (Shri Gopal Chandra Sinha commemoration volume) (1984-1986): 47-51.
“Prāṇa, apāna and other prāṇa-s in Vedic literature.” ALB 50 (Golden Jubilee Volume): 326-348.
“Reaching immortality according to the first anuvāka of the Jaiminīya-Upaniṣad-Brāhmaṇa.” In: Dr B.R. Sharma felicitation volume, Tirupati, pp. 32-42 [of the English section].
Review of: A. Michaels, Beweisverfahren in der vedischen Sakralgeometrie, Wiesbaden 1978. WZKS 30: 194-197.
1987  “The black spot in the moon, salt, seed and the devayajana.” In: Navonmeṣa: Gopinātha Kavirāja smṛtigranthaḥ, vol. 4: English, Benares, pp. 307-313.
“Virāj and Kṛta in Sāmavedic ritualistic arithmetics.” ABORI 68 ( Ramakrishna Gopal Bhandarkar 150th birth-anniversary volume): 207-214.
Review of: J. Miller, The vision of cosmic order in the Vedas, London 1985. IIJ 30: 107-111.
Review of: J.-M. Péterfalvi (trad.) & M. Biardeau (introd.), Le Mahabharata, livres I à V & VI à XVIII, extraits traduits du sanscrit, Paris 1985-1986. BTLV 143: 167-168.
1988  Review of: K. Strunk, Typische Merkmale von Fragesätzen und die altindische “Pluti”, München 1983. OLZ 83: 612-616.
1989  “Licht en donker in het oude Indië.” In: R.E.V. Stuip en C. Vellekoop (red.), Licht en donker in de Middeleeuwen, Utrecht, pp. 11-20.
Review of: C.G. Kashikar, Vārāha Śrautasūtra, Pune 1988. ABORI 70 (1989) [1990]: 356-358.
Review of: K. Mylius, Mallanāga Vātsyāyana, das Kāmasūtra, Leipzig 1987. AO 50: 256-258.
Review of: K. Klaus, Die altindische Kosmologie, nach den Brāhmaṇas dargestellt, Bonn 1986. IIJ 32: 294-300.
Review of: K. Mylius, Geschichte der Literatur im alten Indien, Leipzig 1983. IIJ 32: 300-303.
Review of: M. Mayrhofer, Etymologisches Wörterbuch des Altindoarischen I, 1-4, Heidelberg 1986-1988. WZKS 33: 215-216.
1990  The Jyotiṣṭoma ritual: Jaiminīya Brāhmaṇa I, 66-364, Leiden (Orientalia Rheno-Traiectina 34).
Review of: G. Ehlers, Emendationen zum Jaiminīya-Brāhmaṇa (Zweites Buch), Bonn 1988. IIJ 33: 309-310.
1991  Light, soul and visions in the Veda , Poona (Post-graduate and research Department Series 36; P.D. Gune Memorial Lectures, fifth series).
“Jan Gonda (14 April 1905 – 28 July 1991).” IIJ 34: 281-286. – Obituary.
Review of: M. Witzel, W. Caland. Kleine Schriften, Stuttgart 1990. WZKS 35: 203-205.
1992  “Oorsprong en achtergrond van de Indische wedergeboorteleer.” MKNAW 55,6: 225-239.
“King Prāṇa.” In: A.W. van den Hoek, D.H.A. Kolff, M.S. Oort (eds), Ritual, state and history in South Asia: essays in honour of J.C. Heesterman, Leiden, pp. 50-64.
“Uddālaka”s experiments with salt (ChU. 6, 13).” ABORI 72-73 (Amṛtamahotsava 1917-1992 volume) (1991-1992)[1993]: 423-436.
“Belly, pelvis, buttocks or cheeks? Vedic kukṣī́ (dual).” IIJ 35: 19-31.
Review of: W.O. Kaelber, Tapta mārga: asceticism and initiation in Vedic India, Albany 1989. IIJ 35: 48-54.
1993 “Sukṛta and sacrifice.” In: S. Kulshreshta and J.P. Sinha (eds), Studies in indology and musicology (dr Kawthekar felicitation volume), Delhi, pp. 69-76.
“Non-ritual karman in the Veda.” In: Chowkhamba Sanskrit Series Office centenary commemoration volume (1892-1992), Varanasi, pp. 221-230.
Herdenking: “Jan Gonda: 14 april 1905 – 28 juli 1991.” In: Levensberichten en herdenkingen 1992, Amsterdam: KNAW, pp. 7-15.
Review of: M. Mayrhofer, Etymologisches Wörterbuch des Altindoarischen I, 5-10, Heidelberg 1989-1992. WZKS 37: 232-234.
1994 Jan Gonda: 14 April 1905 – 28 July 1991 , Amsterdam: KNAW – J. Gonda Foundation.
“Magic and ritual: the second chapter of the Kauṣītaki Upaniṣad.” In: S.S. Bahulkar and S. Paranjpe (eds), Śruti-cintāmaṇiḥ: prof. C.G. Kashikar felicitation volume, Pune, pp. 12-20.
“Professor Jan Gonda, b. 14-4-105, d. 28-7-1991.” ABORI 75 (1994)[1995]: 319-322. – Obituary.
“In memoriam Leen van Daalen (30 April 1939 – 1 October 1993).” IIJ 37: 93-94.
1994 “Life after death in the Ṛgvedasaṃhitā.” WZKS 38 (Festschrift Gerhard Oberhammer): 23-41.
1995  “Mahābhārata XII and ṚV X. 129.” In: S.P. Narang Pal (ed.), Modern evaluation of the Mahābhārata, prof. R.K. Sharma felicitation volume, Delhi, pp. 40-47.
“Het perspectief vanuit het buitenland, commentaar op H. Steinmetz.” In: De toekomst van het Nederlands als wetenschapstaal, themabijeenkomst van de KNAW Afdeling Letterkunde van maandag 9 Mei 1994, Amsterdam, pp. 55-56.
“Ketelaar and Millius and their grammar of Hindustani.” BDCRI 54-55 (Sir William Jones commemoration volume) (1994-1995)[1996]: 123-131.
1996  “The pañcāgnividyā and the pitṛyāna/devayāna.” In: A.K. Goswami & D. Chutia (eds), Studies on indology (professor Mukund Madhava Sharma felicitation volume), Delhi, pp. 51-57.
“Redeath and its relation to rebirth and release.” SII 20 (Festschrift Paul Thieme zum 90. Geburtstag): 27-46.
1997  “ ‘Wortgeschichte’ and Vedic etymology.” WZKS 41: 5-16.
Review of: S.W. Jamison, The ravenous hyenas and the wounded sun: myth and ritual in ancient India, Ithaca 1991. IIJ 40: 59-68.
1998 “The study of Vedism, past, present and future.” In: J. Vacek & J. Dvořák (eds), Trends in Indian studies: proceedings of the ESIS, Prague, pp. 31-44.
“The Hindu doctrine of transmigration: its origin and background.” IT 23-24 (Professor Gregory M. Bongard-Levin felicitation volume) (1997-1998): 583-605.
& L.A. van Daalen†: “Vākpatirāja”s Gauḍavaha.” WZKS 42: 41-66.
1999  “Hindu ahiṃsā and its roots.” In: J.E.M. Houben and K.R. van Kooij (eds), Violence denied: violence, non-violence and the rationalization of violence in South Asian cultural history, Leiden, pp. 17-43.
“A note on yáthā in the Śatapatha Brāhmaṇa.” IIJ 42: 49-52.
“Yonder world in the Atharvaveda.” IIJ 42: 107-120.
“Pits, pitfalls and the underworld in the Veda.” IIJ 42: 211-226.
2000  “Distance and death in the Veda.” AS / EA 54: 103-117.
“India as a sociolinguistic area and Mayrhofer’s etymologisches Wörterbuch des Altindoarischen III.” WZKS 44: 5-18.
“Classifications and yonder world in the Veda.” WZKS 44: 19-59.
Review of: T. Oberlies, Die Religion des Ṛgveda, 1. Teil: Das religiöse System des Ṛgveda, Wien 1998. OLZ 95: 313-321.
2001  “The saṃvargavidyā and its context in two Sāmavedic texts.” In: K. Karttunen and P. Koskikallio (eds), Vidyārṇavavandanam: essays in honour of Asko Parpola, Helsinki (Studia Orientalia 94), pp. 55-66.
“A Vedic example of ‘No Doubt’ used as a parenthetic clause.” IIJ 44: 17-20.
“Citra”s questions in KauṣU. 1, 1.” IIJ 44: 265-268.
“Uddālaka”s teaching in Chāndogya Upaniṣad 6, 8-16.” IIJ 44: 289-298.
“Levensbericht Jan Willem de Jong: 15 februari 1921 – 22 januari 2000.” In: Levensberichten en herdenkingen 2001, Amsterdam: KNAW, pp. 39-42.
2002  Kauṣītaki Upaniṣad: translation and commentary with an appendix Śāṅkhāyana Āraṇyaka IX-XI, Groningen: Forsten (Groningen Oriental Studies 16).
De late “ontdekking” van het Sanskrit en de Oudindische cultuur in Europa, Leiden (Valedictory address Leiden University).
“Where and what is the priyáṃ dhā́ma of a Vedic God?” IIJ 45: 153-171.
“The dark and deep underworld in the Veda.” JAOS 122.2 (Special Issue: Indic and Iranian studies in honor of Stanley Insler on his sixty-fifth birthday): 213-223.
Review of: E. Wilden, Der Kreislauf der Opfergaben im Veda (Stuttgart 2000), IIJ 45: 87-104.
2003  “The concept of sampad in the Arthaśāstra, the Vedic prose texts and the Gītā.” IIJ 46: 231-259.
2004  & Minoru Hara (eds), Gedenkschrift J.W. de Jong. Tokyo (Studia philologica buddhica Monograph series 17).
“Notes on the second book of the Gītā.” In: H.W. Bodewitz and Minoru Hara (eds), Gedenkschrift J.W. de Jong. Tokyo (Studia philologica buddhica Monograph series 17), pp. 15-26.
“Notes on the fourth book of the Gītā.” In: E. Curtius (ed.), Du corps humain, au carrefour de plusieurs savoirs en Inde: Mélanges offerts à Arion Roşu, Bucarest-Paris (Studia Asiatica 4-5), pp. 631-642.
“Notes on the fifth book of the Gītā.” In: B. Mukhopadhyay and D. Bhattacharya (eds), India and indology: Sukumari Bhattacharji felicitation volume, Kolkata, pp. 469-477.
2005  “Notes on the third book of the Bhagavadgītā.” In: Lars Göhler (ed.), Indische Kultur im Kontext: Rituale, Texte und Ideen aus Indien und der Welt: Festschrift für Klaus Mylius, Wiesbaden (Beiträge zur Indologie 40), pp. 39-47.
“Herdenking Franciscus Bernardus Jacobus Kuiper, 7 juli 1907 – 14 november 2003.” In: Levensberichten en herdenkingen 2005, Amsterdam: KNAW, pp. 76-84.
2006  “Vedic aghám: evil or sin, distress or death?” IIJ 49: 103-125.
“The Vedic concepts ā́gas and énas.” IIJ 49: 225-271.
2007 “The special meaning of śrama and other derivations of the root śram in the Veda.” IIJ 50: 145-160.
“Sins and vices: their enumerations and specifications in the Veda.” IIJ 50: 317-339.
Review of: K. Steiner, Texte zum Vājapeya-Ritual: Maitrāyaṇīsaṃhitā 1.11 und Taittirīyabrāhmaṇa 1.3.2-9 mit Bemerkungen zu Kāṭhakasaṃhitā 13.14 und 14.1-10, eingeleitet, übersetzt und kommentiert, Marburg 2004. IIJ 50: 235-258.
2008  “The refrain kásmai devā́ya havíṣā vidhema (ṚV 10, 121).” In: L. Kulikov and M. Rusanov (eds), Indologica: T. Ya. Elizarenkova memorial volume, book 1, Moscow (Orientalia et Classica: Papers of the Institute of Oriental and Classical Studies 20), pp. 79-97.
2009  “On the interpretation of Bhagavad Gītā I-VI: some observations on the occasion of a new translation of the Gītā.” ZDMG 159,2: 333-361.
“The dialogue of Yama and Yamī (ṚV. 10,10).” IIJ 52: 251-285.
2010 “The legend of Urvaśī and Purūravas and their dialogue.” SII 27 [2011]: 1-27.
2011  “The chronology of the Upaniṣads and their basic ideas: some criticisms on a recent study by Signe Cohen.” ZDMG 161,2: 405-414.
2013  “Vedic terms denoting virtues and merits.” AS/EA 67,1: 31-73.
2019 Vedic cosmology and ethics: selected studies. Ed. by Dory Heilijgers, Jan Houben and Karel van Kooij. Leiden: Brill (Gonda Indological Studies 19).