Searching Tibetan Language Materials

  1. The Library of Congress romanization rules must be used for accurate and complete results.  See
  2. The LC system differs slightly from the Wylie romanization system.  In particular, the letters ང་ ཉ་ ཞ་ and  ཤ་ are searched using “na” “na” “za” and “sa” respectively (instead of “nga”  “nya” “zha” and “sha”).  Tibetan records in CLIO do not currently include the Tibetan script.
  3. In CLIO searches diacritics are ignored (though they do display in the bibliographic records).
  4. Do not enter punctuation marks that are used by other systems.  For example, do not use the full stop (.) which in the Extended Wylie Transliteration System (EWTS) distinguishes གྱ་ (gya) and གཡ་ (g.ya), or the plus-sign (+) used to conjoin syllables in Sanskrit terms such as pad+ma.  In CLIO, these marks will be read as a space and as a +.  For these examples, the correct search terms are “gya” “gya” and “padma.
  5. Since a variety of transliterations have been used by publishers and phonetic renderings are still not standard, it is important to search various forms of names.  This will also increase the likelihood of finding English-language records for which the Tibetan romanization has not been entered.  For example, a keyword search for “nyingma” will generate a different set of titles than a search for “rnin ma”.
  6. For more detailed instructions and suggestions check the Tibetan Studies homepage at or ask the Tibetan Studies Librarian, Lauran Hartley (

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