brahmi? (was Re: Origin of Dravidian languages)

Erik Seldeslachts erik.seldeslachts at RUG.AC.BE
Tue Feb 10 08:52:09 UTC 1998

Jacob Baltuch wrote:

> I was surprised (given the metaphore) to read in some translation
> of azoka's edicts he styled himself deevaanaaMpriya. What's the earliest
> attested metaphorical use?

Deva in devAnAMpriya is used in the meaning of 'king'. In fact,
devAnAMpriya seems to be a translation of the Hellenistic title filos
tOn basileOn 'friend of the kings', applied to highly placed vassals.
This might have important implications for the interpretation of the
relationship between the Mauryas and the Seleucids: see SCHARFE,
Hartmut, The Maurya dynasty and the Seleucids, Zeitschrift fuer
vergleichende Sprachforschung auf dem Gebiete der indogermanischen
Sprachen 85 (1971): 211-225.

Erik Seldeslachts
Universiteit Gent

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