[INDOLOGY] A distraction from the Coronavirus

Madhav Deshpande mmdesh at umich.edu
Sun Apr 5 14:33:57 UTC 2020

Dear Roland,

     Your observation that many of these masculine usages for *padma* come
from Kashmir is interesting. I have no idea of how gender works in Kashmiri
and particularly in old Kashmiri.  Just looking at Hindi, the three
gendered words of Sanskrit get redistributed to two genders.  While Marathi
has three genders like Sanskrit, the genders of words often change in
Marathi.  Words like *svapna *and *vighna *that are masculine in Sanskrit
become neuter in Marathi.  The Marathi users of Sanskrit will instinctively
use these words in neuter, till they are corrected by a learned pandit.
मेरी आत्मा of Hindi has always shocked me as a Marathi speaker.


Madhav M. Deshpande
Professor Emeritus, Sanskrit and Linguistics
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
Senior Fellow, Oxford Center for Hindu Studies

[Residence: Campbell, California, USA]

On Sun, Apr 5, 2020 at 7:24 AM Roland Steiner <steiner at staff.uni-marburg.de>

> Dear Madhav,
> > The norm in classical literature is to use *padma *in neuter gender, like
> > other words for the lotus.
> I am aware of this, but there is also evidence in non-epic and non-puranic
> works, for example
> Kṣemendra's *Darpadalana* (7.30):
> *°śoṇaprabhārdrāv iva pādapadmau*
> Or, Somadeva's *Kathāsaritsāgara* (5.2.229):
> *ubhau kalaśapadmau ca śuśubhate sitāruṇau*
> Or, *Mokṣopāya* 5.65.29 (= "*Yogavāsiṣṭha*")
> *padmāv iva jaloddhṛtau*
> Perhaps it is no coincidence that these examples all come from texts that
> originated in Kashmir.
> With best regards,
> Roland

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