Vedic accent marks and anusvaras

Madhav Deshpande mmdesh at UMICH.EDU
Sat Jul 5 20:45:17 UTC 2003

While listening to recorded and actual recitation of various Vedic reciters from different parts of India, I have noticed how the so called naasikya or ranga is pronounced differently.  For instance, for the word saMhitaa, one hears sa~vhitaa in Maharashtra, but other variants are sagunghitaa, sa~ghitaa etc. where the degree of nasality varies considerably.  Consider the fact that Panini derives the words sahita and saMhita both from sam+hita (samo vaa hitatatayo.h), also satata and santata from sam+tata, with an optional deletion of M.  This may be taken to reflect the range of nasality from full to zero in various dialects of Sanskrit.

                                                                                Madhav Deshpande

> ----------
> From:         Stefan Baums
> Reply To:     Indology
> Sent:         Saturday, July 5, 2003 1:00 PM
> To:   INDOLOGY at
> Subject:           Re: Vedic accent marks and anusvaras
> I would like to thank Timothy C. Cahill, Arlo Griffiths, Harry
> Spier and Peter M. Scharf for their suggestions and references on
> Vedic accents and anusvaras/anunasikas.  The introduction to
> Vishva Bandhu's Vedic Word Concordance is indeed a good first stop
> for the former: more comprehensive and accurate than Macdonell's
> appendix.  What still remains unclear to me is the issue of Vedic
> anusvaras/anunasikas.  While it is obvious that the different
> Vedic traditions have developed many visually distinct and
> fanciful ways of marking nasalisation, I wonder whether in any one
> version of a given Vedic texts, more than two functionally
> distinct nasalisation graphemes occur, and if so, how to interpret
> them phonetically.
> Best regards,
> Stefan Baums
> --
> Stefan Baums
> Asian Languages and Literature
> University of Washington

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