Maheswaran Nair swantam at ASIANETINDIA.COM
Thu Feb 19 02:57:27 UTC 2009

Amarakosa says "samskrtam krtrime laksanopete" whereby it is indicated  
that Sanskrit is artificial and perfect.
K.Maheswaran Nair

Quoting victor van Bijlert <victorvanbijlert at KPNPLANET.NL>:

> I think we should also take into consideration that Sanskrit is by
> definition an artificial language. The word itself means after all something
> like: purified, perfected. It stood in contrast to the Prakrits, the natural
> languages (of the Aryan elites?). Being an artificial language, Sanskrit
> would not have the same features as a spoken contact language used in the
> bazaars.
> -----Oorspronkelijk bericht-----
> Van: Indology [mailto:INDOLOGY at] Namens Alexandra Vandergeer
> Verzonden: woensdag 18 februari 2009 8:18
> Aan: INDOLOGY at
> Onderwerp: Re: frequencies
> Correct, but does it also hold for the top100 of used words? I doubt so, I
> personally think that the highly specialized vocabularies, or jargons,
> fall in a lower category, except of course of the name and ways of address
> of the deity in a purana devoted to that particular deity and so on and so
> on. Anyway it would be interesting to see whether indeed the different
> genres in Skt texts are so different as we generally assume, restricting
> ourselves to the top100. It would be equally interesting to see whether
> there is a shift in language use throughout the centuries in the
> high-frequency words.
> Alexandra
>> Frequency in Sanskrit does not work in the same way as in English and
>> other modern languges. It is possible to complie a list of 3000 words
>> in English that cover 70-80% of "all" conversations, newspaper
>> articles, etc. This is just not possible in the case of Sanskrit--if
>> it were possible, it would have been done a long time ago--because the
>> vocabulary is highly specialized according to literary genres. On the
>> other hand, if one moves within the same genre, one can go back and
>> forth hundreds of years without any difficulty, something that cannot
>> be done in English, German, French and do on. Hebrew is an exception,
>> but this is a special case.
>> Best wishes,
>> EF

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