Well, mzybe not so cool: Sanskrit script?

Allen W Thrasher athr at LOC.GOV
Tue Jan 5 22:03:29 UTC 2010

"Possibly, although it is always somewhat difficult to guess intentions of 
Sanskritists - if I may have this little joke.
Judging from harder facts, i.e. from concomitant religious and politicial 
changes, the Dogras re-established Hindu rule in Kashmir only after c. 500 years of Muslim and c. 30 years of Sikh rule. It is likely that in its wake also the influx of Hindu texts from India proper written in Devanagari increased considerably, from which a local shaping, known as "Kashmir Devanagari", developed."

The Valley was transferred to Gulab Singh in 1846, when the printing of Sanskrit was already underway in British India.  One would presume (??) that this made it significantly less expensive of money or effort to acquire books than before.  But to read those published in the north of British India one would have to know the Nagari or Bengali script.

Does anyone know if the habit of spending the winter in the plains or in Jammu was already established before the Dogra Raj?  Pandit friends of mine tell me their families used to go down to Jammu in the winter, and I gather the maharaja and muc of the government moved.  If many of the Pandits went to Jammu or someplace else to the south of the mountains in the winter, they might have had more opportunities to encounter Nagari than if they stayed in the Valley the year round.


Allen W. Thrasher, Ph.D.
Senior Reference Librarian
Team Coordinator
South Asia Team, Asian Division
Library of Congress, Jefferson Building 150
101 Independence Ave., S.E.
Washington, DC 20540-4810
tel. 202-707-3732; fax 202-707-1724; athr at loc.gov
The opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of the Library of Congress.

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