The message somehow left my computer as I was changing parts of it. There seems to be a problem with the most recent version of Apple’s Mail program. If one is changing a draft selected for sending with the “Check grammar with spelling” tool or making changes manually one by one, the draft is sent even after only a part of the changes are made. It is not held back for more changes or for another activation of the “send” command. Anyway, my intended text was:
As far as I could ascertain, there is no word meaning ‘dialect’ in pre-modern Sanskrit. In ancient and medieval India, the way of looking at linguistic variation and handling it must have been different, at a fundamental level, from the way to which we are now accustomed. In my view, therefore, the questions we should ask before we try to answer the important questions Prof. Paturi has asked should be: (a) Where exactly the difference lay? (b) How did the difference come about? What were its historical causes?
I do not have answers to these questions, at least not answers that can be put forward for discussion, but the following article by Dr. Eivind Kahrs could be taken as a starting point:
Kahrs, Eivind G(eroge). 1992. "What is a
tad-bhava word?” Indo-Iranian Journal 35:225-249.
When did the convention of treating Prakrits as 'languages' and not as dialects begin?
Was there such an attitude of 'languages' not 'dialects' towards Prakrits in Sanskrit or Prakrit sources of the ancient or medieval period?
Is there a work dealing with this issue?