periodisation of Skt. (was: Re: Tamil words in English)

Robert J. Zydenbos zydenbos at BLR.VSNL.NET.IN
Sat Feb 21 16:58:25 UTC 1998

Vidhyanath Rao wrote:

> [Since nobody would bite my post about periodization of Sanskrit, I
> will try to steer this that way :-)]

> There is Sanskrit, and then there is Sanskrit.

> Medieval Sanskrit, in its syntax, had been deeply influenced by
> Prakrit. So much so, that some genres, like drama dialog, are just
> Prakrits in Sanskrit phonology. Modern Sanskrit, being modelled on
> medieval S., (with some further influences from modern languages),
> continues this.

This is in fact a very interesting and important topic, which too
few people have looked into. If more Sanskritists would try to
describe how and where Sanskrit was modified in the course of time,
a variety of colleagues would benefit from it: historians, students
of literature, etc. etc. This is of course not easy, but such
research has already been done for, e.g., later Latin, and it
should be possible for Sanskrit too.


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