Elliot Stern emstern at NNI.COM
Wed Jul 8 15:23:47 UTC 1998

I (Elliot) was paying uneven attention to this thread, and missed the
following exchange between Jacob Baltuch and Sandra van der Geer
completely. Soon after, Jacob asked me offlist to interpret three Sanskrit
utterances. These utterances, and my reply (with a brief new note), may be
found after the line of asterisks below.

Jacob Baltuch wrote:

>Regarding your Sanskrit example: if pushed I would have probably guessed
>that Sanskrit does not allow indirect objects to be raised to subject,
>since I'd never have thought of the passive of the *causative*, but you
>make an ingenious use of it, although it is not completely clear to me.

>1) rAmo nalAya pustaka.m dadAti
>2) nalAya pustaka.m dIyate
>3) nalo pustaka.m dApyate

>I'd always thought the meaning of (3) was "N. is made to give a book by R."
>(passive of "raamaH naalaM pustakaM daapayati" or "raamaH naaleNa pustakaM
>daapayati", i.e. "R. makes/has N. give a book").
>But "nalo raameNa pustakaM daapyate" in the meaning of "N. is given a book
>by R." with the crucial raising of the indirect object to the subject position
>entirely stumps me.

Sandra van der Geer replied (Sat, 4 Jul 1998 22:07:45)

>I do not know if you understand Dutch (I see you have .BE as country
>code), but >maybe you understand 3) if I say

>1) rama geeft nala een boek
>rama - gives - nala - a book
>2) een boek wordt door rama aan nala gegeven
>a book - is - by rama - to nala - given
>3) nala is een boek gegeven geworden (door rama) / gegeven doen worden
>nala - is - a book - been given (by rama) / given cause to be

>Here, the idea of dative-like subject is felt.

It seems to me (Elliot) that Sandra seeks to stretch the meaning of
*daapyate* by playing with some possibilities of the Dutch language (this
play is I think also possible in English). In this way, she allows
*daapyate* "has been caused to give" to lose its causative sense, and she
finds raising of the indirect object to the subject position, etc. I think
it is fair to say that the aSTaadhyaayii would have given rules allowing
such an interpretation, and paaNini's commentators would have provided such
an interpretation if it were possible in the Sanskrit language. They
evidently knew the language quite well, and they were quite thorough in
discussing kaarakaaNi and the use of the various "case endings". Please
consider the interpretation offered below.


In his offlist query, Jacob asked me (Elliot) to consider these three

>  na kaz cid indraayudhaM darzyate
>  daaso bhaaraM haaryate
>  raamaH pustakaM daapyate

I (Elliot) replied offlist:

The meaning of these utterances becomes clearer when we follow the lead of
the vyaakaraNa scholars, and other commentators, by providing equivalent
active voice paraphrases for them. They do not, by the way, make or notice
any semantic distinction between the active and passive voice expressions
(this is why I have sometimes given alternative English renderings in
various constructions - the translator needs to decide on the appropriate
rendering in English, German, Dutch, Lakota or whatever language for a
given text in a given context ).  As a shortcut, I am relying here on Vaman
Shivaram Apte's *The Student Guide to Sanskrit Composition* on the use of
the accusative, etc. with the causal verb, pp. 28-33. He gives some
references to sources in a.s.taadhyaayii, mahaabhaa.syam,

"na kazcid indraayudhaM darzyate" should be equivalent to "na kaJcid
indraayudham darzayati" "he does not show the rainbow to anybody".

"daaso bhaaraM haaryate" should be equivalent to the "daasaM (daasena vaa)
bhaaraM haarayati" "he  has the servant carry the luggage".

"raamaH pustakaM daapyate" should be equivalent to "raamaM pustakaM
daapayati" "he makes R. give the book".

Thus "daaso bhaaraM haaryate" may be translated "the servant is made to
carry the luggage". It does *not* mean "the servant is carried the luggage
to" (which I understand to mean "the servant is carried to the luggage"
daaso bhaaraM prati hriyate). "raamaH pustakaM daapyate" may be translated
"R. is made to give the book". It does *not* mean "R. is given a book"
(ramaaya raamasya vaa pustakaM diiyate).

Let us now look at the Sanskrit examples Sandra van der Geer
provided (in a message Re: Sanskrit Fri, 3 Jul 1998 09:37:14 +0200)

1) rAmo nalAya pustaka.m dadAti
2) nalAya pustaka.m dIyate
3) nalo pustaka.m dApyate

1) means "R. gives N. a book"/"A book is given to N. by R."/"N. is given a
book by R.".
2) means "R. gives N. a book"/"A book is given to N. by R."/"N. is given a
book by R.".
3) does not mean the same thing as 1) and 2). I believe it should be
paraphrased as "raamo nalaM pustakaM daapayati", and mean "R. makes N. give
a book"/"N. is made by R. to give a book" (N.B., if Apte explains an
utterance like this, I missed it. So be cautioned that the source of this
interpretation (Elliot) is a lesser, and fallible, authority!)*

If Sandra meant that 3) is semantically equivalent to 1) and 2), I too
would like to know how that can be so.



* Clarification (for Indology list posting): I should have begun this
parenthetical disclaimer (N.B., if Apte explains an utterance exactly like

Elliot M. Stern
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Philadelphia, PA 19143-2029

telephone: 215 747 6204

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