Question on Patanjali (Kashmir and P's MB) and kApyas

Madhav Deshpande mmdesh at
Wed Mar 26 11:59:16 UTC 1997

	It seems most likely that patancala and patanjali are dialectal
variants as assumed by Palaniappan.  While strictly within Sanskrit, both
nc and nj can be found, these two combinations would probably suggest
different regional affiliations within the range of Prakrit.  The word
Patancala is probably of Northwestern Prakrit origin, both because of the
cluster nc, and the retention of an intervocalic -t-, the occurrence of
-l- would show a more complicated situation.  An -r- in its place would
have made it a more conclusively northwestern Prakrit word.  As the word
stands, it has linguistically mixed features.  The word Patanjali with its
-nj- would indicate a slightly easterly Prakrit, but its retention of the
intervocalic -t- makes it complicated.  I suspect that here we have
evidence of Brahmin dialects which constituted some sort of interlanguage
between Sanskrit and Prakrit, partially carrying features of both.  
Sanskrit being representative of a massive dialect mixture, the word could
be found anywhere in Sanskrit.  
	The evidence of Prakritic usages cited in the Mahaabhaa.sya needs
to be carefully evaluated for its regional affiliation.  At first glance,
the l-prominent usages helayo helayo ascribed to asuras, and the change of
.Rtaka to .Ltaka ascribed to the dialects of the Brahmin women seems to
point more in the direction of the region of Magadhi Prakrit.  However,
forms like aa.navayati cited by Patanjali, due to their retention of the
intervocalic -t-, again suggest an interlanguage between Sanskrit and
		Madhav Deshpande

On Wed, 26 Mar 1997 Palaniappa at wrote:

> While I eagerly await the paper from Dr. Aklujkar, I have come across an
> interesting reference. I have not succeeded in verifying the source of it. 
> In "The BrhadAranyaka Upanishad: An interpretative Exposition" by Swami
> Krishnananda, published by the Divine Life Society in 1984, in discussing the
> passage 3.3.1 where pataJcala kApya's daughter is possessed by a gandharva,
> the translation-cum-commentary reads as follows: "We came to the house of a
> great Master by name PataJcala, of the line of Kapi (not Patanjali Maharishi
> of Yoga. He is also called KApya)." 
> In many of the books on Yoga SUtras I consulted, I did not find any reference
> to pataJjali being a kApya. If the reference is true, then it might provide
> some additional support to pataJjali being from the northwest. (I assume that
> the tradition views both pataJjalis as one.)
> Interestingly, there seems to be variant readings of the name of the kApya
> mentioned in the upaniSad mentioned above, namely, pataJcala and pataJjala.
> This seems to indicate, if the grammarian's name is related to the names in
> the upaniSad, then there is a Prakritism in his own name (with c > j after
> the nasal J).
> Is it not ironic that pataJjali was oblivious to this Prakritism in his own
> name, when his attitude towards Prakrit was as described in Deshpande's
> "Sanskrit and Prakrit"?
> Can 'possession' by a gandharva be taken to suggest that the wife mentioned
> in passage 3.7.1 of the above upaniSad is at least culturally non-Vedic?
> Regards.
> S. Palaniappan  

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