[INDOLOGY] Visualisation of Sanskrit Phonetics

Harry Spier vasishtha.spier at gmail.com
Sun Sep 26 18:25:48 UTC 2021

Dear all,
There are two articles by SK Chatterji written 25 years apart titled "The
Pronounciation of Sanskrit" , same title, different articles.  I'm
attaching them for whoever is interested.
Harry Spier

On Sun, Sep 26, 2021 at 1:28 PM Hock, Hans Henrich via INDOLOGY <
indology at list.indology.info> wrote:

> Dear All,
> As I recall, the issue of how Sanskrit is pronounced in modern (i.e. early
> 20th-century) India is addressed in an article by Suniti Kumar Chatterji –
> Chatterji, Suniti Kumar. The pronunciation of Sanskrit. *Indian
> Linguistics*, (1961) vol. 21, pp. 61-82. Originally: *K. B. Pathak
> commemoration volume*, 330-349. Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute,
> 1934.
> For the ancient period, there are the Prātiśākhyas of course (the source
> for Allen’s and Verma’s publications; Vidhata Mishra largely repeats
> Verma). On the earliest recoverable pronunciation of syllabic *ṛ* as
> [ara] (with both [a]s a quarter mora), I have published a paper: Were ṛ and
> ḷ velar in early Sanskrit? *Vidyā-Vratin: Professor A. M. Ghatage
> felicitation **volume*, ed. by V. N. Jha, 69-94. (Sri Garib Dass Oriental
> Series, 160.) Delhi: Sri Satguru Publications, 1992
> To teach retroflex to American students I ask them to pronounce their *r* and,
> while they are doing so, press the tongue hard against the roof of the
> mouth, which produces a retroflex stop *ṭ* that is quite distinct from
> their *t* sound.
> In general, I have found it useful to adopt one of the regional variants
> of modern Indian pronounciations (I use the northern one with *ri* for *ṛ* and
> *gy* for *jñ* (while properly warning the students that these are modern
> pronunciations). By becoming familiar with this way of pronouncing Sanskrit
> students will find it easier to follow Indian Sanskritists when they are
> speaking/pronouncing Sanskrit. I also urge students to keep their aspirates
> and nonaspirates and their dentals and retroflexes as distinct as possible,
> telling them that when I was beginning to study Sanskrit I sometimes spent
> fruitless hours locating something in the dictionary because of looking up
> under the “wrong *t*”.
> I hope some of you will find these remarks interesting.
> All the best – stay safe,
> Hans Henrich
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