[INDOLOGY] (still) no distraction from the coronavirus...

Madhav Deshpande mmdesh at umich.edu
Fri Mar 27 12:01:43 EDT 2020

Dear Jan,

     Beautiful verses and an informative message.  My only correction to
your verses is मनुष्यानां > मनुष्याणां.  With best wishes,


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 Fri, Mar 27, 2020 at 8:56 AM Jan E.M. Houben via INDOLOGY <
indology at list.indology.info> wrote:

> कश्चिद् गोमूत्रमादत्ते   ‘ वैटामिनाञ् ’ च कश्चन ।
> हरिद्राप्रचयान् कश्चित्   सर्वे कोरोणकातराः ॥
> तिष्ठन्त्यभ्यन्तरे सर्वे   कोरोणाख्याणुभीरुकाः ।
> इदं दुःखं मनुष्यानां   किं भवेद् भूमिभूतये ? ॥
> उपप्लवेऽस्मिनायान्ति   भिषजादय ऊतये ।
> नमस्तेभ्योऽस्तु ये नूनं   लोकत्राणसमुद्यताः ॥
> Dear Madhav and Christian (and dear Walter),
> As the impact on our daily lives is only growing, and as long as worldwide
> the mortality curves are, although perhaps slowly flattening, not yet
> really coming down, it is difficult to get distracted for long from the
> "coronavirus"...
> Your verses with epic and mythological references are fascinating even in
> translation; since the ślokas I have composed simply describe the current
> situation and what people do and believe, I guess a translation will
> neither be interesting nor required.
> Incidentally, the first professor of Sanskrit in Europe (the continent
> having a name which perhaps suggests it should have a "broad outlook", *urvī
> prekṣā*), Antoine Léonard (de) Chézy (partly latinized name: Apud-y),
> specifically appointed for the academic study and teaching of Sanskrit in
> Paris in 1815, was also, or so it seems, the last one for whom Sanskrit was
> not only an object of study but also a medium of scientific expression: in
> his *Théorie du Sloka*, Paris, 1827, he summarized his conclusion on
> Sanskrit metrics in a Sanskrit verse which illustrated the theory he had
> extracted from his large reading samples.
> For the last few centuries, however, "expressive Sanskrit" and "functional
> and communicative Sanskrit" constitute glaring lacunae in the occidental
> Sanskrit teaching of interested students, even though a little training in
> these domains can contribute significantly to a basic mastery of Sanskrit
> and even to the critical study of "archival Sanskrit".
> To conclude, for those who have not yet rushed away from my longish
> message, I would therefore like to commemorate in a simple descriptive
> sragdharā, also by way of distraction away from the corona virus, this
> forgotten pioneer, de Chézy, who passed away prematurely 188 years ago due
> to the cholera pandemic in 1832:
> प्राद्यौत् शाकुन्तलात्मा  यदुपकृतितया  शोधिते शास्त्ररूपे
> श्लोकस्यौघान् पठित्वा  रचनविधिमकार्षीत् कवीनां प्रसिद्ध् यै ।
> वाचः प्राध्यापकत्वे  प्रथमत उपदेष्टाभवत् संस्कृतायाः
>   सोऽ“न्त्वन् लेव् नार्द् द शेज़िः”  “परि”- नगर “उरुप्रेक्ष”-खण्डे समस्ते ॥
> Stay well,
> N.B.
> Dear Christian, Thanks for your verse with special qualities.
> Apart from स्पृशतु in the first pāda,
> or else मा पिस्पृशत् but then you have to give up न which you obviously
> like to keep after करो, to harmonize with the current Hindi orthography
> of कोरोन ,
> I would suggest for the second line: कोरोनाख्यातदेवारिः  कामदेवेन हन्यताम्
>> --
> *Jan E.M. Houben*
> Directeur d'Études, Professor of South Asian History and Philology
> *Sources et histoire de la tradition sanskrite*
> École Pratique des Hautes Études (EPHE, Paris Sciences et Lettres)
> *Sciences historiques et philologiques *
> *johannes.houben [at] ephe.psl.eu <johannes.houben at ephe.psl.eu>*
> *https://ephe-sorbonne.academia.edu/JanEMHouben
> <https://ephe-sorbonne.academia.edu/JanEMHouben>*
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