अष्टाध्याय्यां संज्ञाः – Nominations in अष्टाध्यायी 

One does not find in अष्टाध्यायी, classification of सूत्राणि, the way they are classified  by later grammarians in six types – १ संज्ञासूत्राणि २ परिभाषासूत्राणि ३ अधिकारसूत्राणि ४ विधिसूत्राणि ५ नियमसूत्राणि ६ अतिदेशसूत्राणि 

It is contended that संज्ञासूत्राणि are 91 out of total 3983 सूत्राणि. 

What basically is a संज्ञा ? What then is a संज्ञासूत्रम् ? 

One meaning of संज्ञा is ‘definition’. If so, संज्ञासूत्रम् is such सूत्रम्, wherein there is definition of a grammatical terminology. For example, 

  • सुप्तिङन्तं पदम् (१-४-१४) defines that whatever has सुप् or तिङ् at its ending is a पदम्.

But what is a सुप् ? What is a तिङ् ?

  • सुप् is a nomination संज्ञा for any element of स्वौजसमौट्छष्टाभ्याम्भिस्ङेभ्याम्भ्यस्ङसिभ्याम्भ्यस्ङसोसाम्ङ्योस्सुप्‌ (४-१-२)
  • तिङ् is a nomination संज्ञा for any element of तिप्तस्झिसिप्थस्थमिब्वस्मस्तातांझथासाथांध्वमिड्वहिमहिङ् (३-४-७८) 

How does one know सुप् and तिङ् are such nominations ? One cannot find this in any regular Sanskrit dictionary, because these nominations are coined by पाणिनि for composing सूत्राणि of अष्टाध्यायी. He has very much declared how he has coined such nominations. The सूत्रम् of such declaration. is आदिरन्त्येन सहेता (१-१-७१) meaning अन्त्येन इता सह आदिः i.e. a letter at the beginning आदिः with an ending अन्त्य letter, which is an end-marker इत्. Later grammarians call this as अनुबन्धः. Note 

  • सूत्रम् (४-१-२) begins with सुँ and has प् at the end, which is the end-marker. There are 21 सुँप्-elements here (सुँ-औ-जस्) (अम्-औट्-शस्) (टा-भ्याम्-भिस्) (ङे-भ्याम्-भ्यस्) (ङसिँ-भ्याम्-भ्यस्) (ङस्-ओस्-आम्) (ङि-ओस्-सुप्) 
  • Note स्वौ is सुँ+औ, ट्छष्टा is ट्+शस्+टा. These are सन्धि-s employed, making the सूत्रम् read as a single compound word.
  • सूत्रम् (३-४-७८) also begins with ति and has ङ् at the end, which is the end-marker. There are 18 तिङ्-elements here (तिप्-तस्-झि) (सिप्-थस्-थ) (मिप्-वस्-मस्) (त-आताम्-झ) (थास्-आथाम्-ध्वम्) (इड्-वहि-महिङ्)
  • Note first nine are तिङ्-elements for परस्मैपदिनः तिङन्ताः, next nine are तिङ्-elements for आत्मनेपदिनः तिङन्ताः
  • Many of these elements are also given names, nominations coined using the आदिरन्त्येन सहेता-technique, which means that each has an आदिः with an ending अन्त्य letter, which is an end-marker इत्

Now what is an end-marker इत् ? 

There are seven types of इत् specified in as many सूत्राणि.

१.३.२ उपदेशेऽजनुनासिक इत्

१.३.३ हलन्त्यम्

१.३.४ न विभक्तौ तुस्माः 

१.३.५ आदिर्ञिटुडवः 

१.३.६ षः प्रत्ययस्य 

१.३.७ चुटू 

१.३.८ लशक्वतद्धिते

Note सूत्रम् .३.specifies that a तुस्म् हलन्त्यम् in विभक्तौ is not to be considered to be इत्, even if it is हलन्त्यम्.

I have used above, the word ‘nomination’, giving a name or a given name or a coined name. संज्ञा is Sanskrit word for nomination. If so, संज्ञासूत्रम् is such सूत्रम् where a nomination is used in a specific sense. By that संज्ञासूत्राणि are of two types 

  • Those सूत्राणि wherein there is definition संज्ञा of a grammatical term, i.e. संज्ञा of a संज्ञा. 
  • Those सूत्राणि where a nomination संज्ञा is used in a specific sense. 

The word संज्ञा itself connotes both these aspects, because सम्यक् समीचीनंश्च ज्ञायते अनया इति संज्ञा i.e. संज्ञा gives a clear and comprehensive understanding. Donald Trump is संज्ञा of Donald Trump, because it gives a clear and comprehensive understanding of the person Donald Trump. 

The very first सूत्रम् in अष्टाध्यायी – वृद्धिरादैच् (..) is वृद्धिः आत् ऐच् meaning ‘what one finds in आत् and ऐच् is वृद्धिः’. The सूत्रम् defines what वृद्धिः is. So, it is a संज्ञासूत्रम्. But it defines वृद्धिः in terms of two other संज्ञा-s आत् and ऐच्. 

  • आत् means आ only, because त् at the end of आत् is हलन्त्यम् and hence is an इत् an end-marker. But a संज्ञा आत् has only आ in it. Coining a संज्ञा with only one beginning element is justified by सूत्रम् – तपरस्तत्कालस्य (१-१-७०).  
  • ऐच् means beginning with ऐ until the end-marker च्. There is शिवसूत्रम् # ४ ऐ-औ-च्. So ऐच् means ऐ and औ. ऐच् is a संज्ञा coined by आदिरन्त्येन सहेता-technique, applied to शिवसूत्रम् # ४ ऐ-औ-च्. Grammarians later than पाणिनि in their commentaries on अष्टाध्यायी have coined a संज्ञा ‘प्रत्याहारः’ for all संज्ञा-s, which can be coined by आदिरन्त्येन सहेता-technique, applied to शिवसूत्राणि. 
  • Note, प्रत्याहारः is not a पाणिनीया संज्ञा, not a संज्ञा coined by पाणिनि.
  • When studying अष्टाध्यायी and commentaries on अष्टाध्यायी, it would help to be clear about which one is a पाणिनीया संज्ञा and which one is coined by later commentators.

The सूत्रम् – तपरस्तत्कालस्य (१-१-७०) seems to have been used primarily to denote singular vowels. Having said that, 

  • इत् means the name-coining tool as detailed in सूत्राणि (१-३-२) to (१-३-८). 
  • But see (६-३-२८) इद्वृद्धौ (इत् वृद्धौ) Here इत् means letter इ used as a substitute आदेशः. 
  • It is rather intriguing that the same word संज्ञा such as इत् is used with different meanings.

About इत् there is an exhaustive detail given in Abhyankar-Shukla’s Dictionary of Sanskrit Grammar 

इत् 1 इत् 2 इत् 3
इत् 4 इत् 5 इत् 6

Also अच् is a प्रत्याहारसंज्ञा obtained by आदिरन्त्येन सहेता-technique, applied to  शिवसूत्राणि (१ to ४) and by that अच् connotes the set of all vowels. Just for additional information, note that

  • अच् is also a कृत्-प्रत्ययः see ३.१.१३४ नन्दिग्रहिपचादिभ्यो ल्युणिन्यचः. 
  • अच् is also a धातुः अच् (अचति-ते) अचुँ गतौ याचने च भ्वादिः, उभयपदी, सकर्मकः 

The gist is still that Singular vowels are named by a संज्ञा for each, comprising the vowel and the end-marker त्, based on  तपरस्तत्कालस्य (१-१-७०). So अत् is संज्ञा for अ, आत् is संज्ञा for आ, इत् is संज्ञा for इ, ईत् is संज्ञा for ई, उत् is संज्ञा for उ, ऊत् is संज्ञा for ऊ, एत् is संज्ञा for ए, etc. See ईदूदेद्द्विवचनं प्रगृह्यम् (१-१-११). Here ईत्, ऊत्, एत् exactly connote ई, ऊ, ए. 

  • उत् is संज्ञा for उ as in उदोष्ठ्यपूर्वस्य (७-१-१०२)
  • Note उत् is also a प्रादिः/उपसर्गः listed in the गणपाठः of सूत्रम् – प्रादयः (१-४-५८)

But I do not see तपरस्तत्कालस्य (१-१-७०) used to make संज्ञा-s for singular consonants. For singular consonants, there seem to be different patterns. 

  • In तपरस्तत्कालस्य (१-१-७०) the consonant त् is made त्+अ =त. 
  • In सूत्रम् छे च (६-१-७३) छे is सप्तम्येकवचनम् of छ which is संज्ञा for छ्. So in छे च, the प्रातिपदिकम् छ is vowel-ending, rather, अ-ending, similar to त for त् in तपरस्तत्कालस्य (१-१-७०). 
  • But in तोर्लि (८-४-६०) लि is सप्तम्येकवचनम् of ल्. Here, the प्रातिपदिकम् is ल् the consonant itself.

There are many प्रत्याहारसंज्ञा-s for sets of consonants. हल् is a प्रत्याहारसंज्ञा obtained by आदिरन्त्येन सहेता-technique, applied to  शिवसूत्राणि (५ to १४) and embraces all consonants. 

  • कु is संज्ञा for all consonants of क-वर्ग. 
  • चु is संज्ञा for all consonants of च-वर्ग
  • टु is संज्ञा for all consonants of ट-वर्ग
  • तु is संज्ञा for all consonants of त-वर्ग
  • पु is संज्ञा for all consonants of पु-वर्ग

The technique of coining these संज्ञा-s कु, चु, टु, तु, पु is by सूत्रम् – अणुदित्सवर्णस्य चाप्रत्ययः (१-१-६९). In १.३.७ चुटू there is even इतरेतर-द्वन्द्व-समासः of चु and टु

  • As such उपदेश-संज्ञा is used directly in १.३.२ उपदेशेऽजनुनासिक इत्. It certainly is an important grammatical term and merits definition. But maybe पाणिनि thought it fit to use it directly, because, maybe, it was prevalent already in Sanskrit grammar.  पाणिनि was of course not the first and only grammarian. In अष्टाध्यायी itself पाणिनि has made reference to many other grammarians शाकल्य, शाकटायन, etc., mostly his predecessors, not contemporaries. 
  • संज्ञा विभक्तिः (see १.३.४ न विभक्तौ तुस्माः) encompasses both सुप्-प्रत्ययाः and तिङ्-प्रत्ययाः though, in common parlance विभक्तिः is related with सुप्-प्रत्ययाः.

In Sanskrit every धातु, every प्रत्ययः has a व्याकरणीया संज्ञा. Fox example 

  • व्याकरणीया संज्ञा of धातुः गम् is गम्लृं.  
  • धातुः कृ has व्याकरणीया संज्ञा as कृञ् when ५ उ. and डुकृञ् when ८ उ. 
  • There must be some coding system, by which the व्याकरणीयाः संज्ञाः for different धातु-s are coined. I do not know whether the coding system has been decoded. It is obvious that the coining employs इत्-सूत्राणि (१-३-२) to (१-३-८). In actual usage all इत्-s are to be dropped as dictated by १-३-९ तस्य लोपः.
  • Many संज्ञाः have more than one इत्-s. See in डुकृञ् there is डु as per १.३.५ आदिर्ञिटुडवः and ञ् is as per १.३.३ हलन्त्यम्
  • Some प्रत्ययाः have व्याकरणीयाः संज्ञाः, which are null sets, i.e. every component of the संज्ञा suffers लोपः. So nothing actually affixes. For example प्रत्ययः क्विन्. Note क्विन् is क्-व्-इं-न्
  • क् is इत् as per १.३.८ लशक्वतद्धिते and suffers लोपः by १-३-९ तस्य लोपः
  • व् is अपृक्त as per वेरपृक्तस्य (६-१-६७) and suffers लोपः by (६-१-६६)
  • इं is इत् as per १.३.२ उपदेशेऽजनुनासिक इत् and suffers लोपः by १-३-९ तस्य लोपः
  • न् is इत् as per १.३.३ हलन्त्यम् and suffers लोपः by १-३-९ तस्य लोपः
  • Isn’t it amazing that पाणिनि thought of composing a व्याकरणीया संज्ञा which is a null set and becomes a good example of that concept in mathematics, in respect of which, a google search on ‘history of set theory in mathematics’ says “.. Set theory, however, was founded by a single paper in 1874 by Georg Cantor:  ..” !

When discussing उत् as a व्याकरणीया संज्ञा, it has been mentioned earlier that उत् has different meanings in different contexts, as per Sutra List for उत् obtainable at <https://www.ashtadhyayi.com/wordindex/#word=%E0%A4%89%E0%A4%A4%E0%A5%8D>

The compilation <https://www.ashtadhyayi.com/wordindex/> is virtually a dictionary of अष्टाध्यायी. 

It comes to mind that it would be useful to compile sort of a thesaurus, निघण्टुः or अमरकोशः of अष्टाध्यायी, especially for धातुपाठः. The idea is to know all the धातवः, which have the same meaning, e.g. गतौ.  

Since अष्टाध्यायी has only सूत्राणि and a सूत्रम् has to be अल्पाक्षरम्, one may think that there would be hardly any तिङन्तम् or कृदन्तम् serving the verbal function. But there are तिङन्ताः used as व्याकरणीयाः संज्ञाः. 

  • An interesting example is of तिङन्तम् करोति used by its सप्तम्येकवचनम् करोतौ in सम्पर्युपेभ्यः करोतौ भूषणे (६-१-१३७). Here करोति means any तिङन्तम् or कृदन्तम् obtained from धातुः कृ as in संस्कारः, संस्कृतम्, परिष्कृतिः, उपस्कारः (सोपस्कारः) 

I have compiled this write-up, just noting down the thoughts as they came to mind. I would like to recompose it to get clearer or ‘at-a-glance’ picture about questions such as ‘different techniques employed in अष्टाध्यायी for composing व्याकरणीयाः संज्ञाः’.  

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I am extremely indebted to the responses from संस्कृतविद्वांसः who spared their valuable time and offered valuable comments and suggestions on the above write-up. Here is now an attempt to extend the thoughts further, taking clues from the comments and suggestions. 

Students of Sanskrit often use books such as शब्दधातुरूपावलिः 

That arouses a curiosity – What is a शब्द ? 

I think the title शब्दधातुरूपावलिः has inherent a negative definition of शब्दः – what is not a धातुः or is not an अव्ययम् is a शब्दः 

In अष्टाध्यायी there is a सूत्रम् – (१-१-६८) स्वं रूपं शब्दस्याशब्दसंज्ञा (Note, शब्दस्याशब्दसंज्ञा = शब्दस्य अशब्दसंज्ञा) 

  • The word अशब्दसंज्ञा is न शब्दसंज्ञा इति अशब्दसंज्ञा (नञ्-तत्पुरुषः)
  • So, स्वं रूपं शब्दस्य शब्दसंज्ञा न 
  • This also sounds to be a negative definition ! The important point is that it speaks of स्वं रूपम्. Every new-born child has a स्वं रूपम्. But that does not become the child’s संज्ञा. That स्वं रूपम् of the child शब्दसंज्ञा न. It is given a name and that given name becomes its संज्ञा.
  • The reason, why पाणिनि composed संज्ञा-s for every धातुः, for every प्रत्ययः, for every वर्णः, (अत् for अ, आत् for आ) for every other grammatical element, the reason of all that exercise seems to be embedded in this सूत्रम् – (१-१-६८) स्वं रूपं शब्दस्याशब्दसंज्ञा.
  • If so, the word शब्द in this सूत्रम् cannot be limited to “what is not a धातुः or an अव्ययम् is a शब्दः”. Certainly every धातुः, every प्रत्ययः, every वर्णः, every other grammatical element has a स्वं रूपम् and merits to have a संज्ञा, which has to be given, which has to be coined.
  • Looks like in the process of composing अष्टाध्यायी, पाणिनि also did all that exhaustive work of composing all the संज्ञा-s.  He even composed a null set संज्ञा such as क्विंन् or thought of using a तिङन्तम् करोति as a संज्ञा, as he proceeded along, composing सूत्राणि of अष्टाध्यायी. He did compose or coin संज्ञा-s for sure.

One important aspect also covered in अष्टाध्यायी is phonetics, rather, phonology, because a scientific outlook is very evident. Is there any language other than Sanskrit, where it is analyzed that every vowel can be pronounced in 18 different ways ? अष्टाध्यायी does that and has संज्ञा-s for that – अनुनासिक (nasal; antonym अननुनासिक), (ह्रस्व, दीर्घ, प्लुत), (उदात्त, अनुदात्त, स्वरित) 2*3*3 = 18. There are five सूत्राणि detailing this. 

१-१-८ मुखमासिकावचनोऽनुनासिकम् nasal or non-nasal

१-२-२७ ऊकालोऽझ्रस्वदीर्घप्लुतः (कालः i.e. length of time devoted – short, long, extra-long)

१-२-२९ उच्चैरुदात्तः (raised)

१-२-३० नीचैरनुदात्तः (stressed down) 

१-२-३१ समाहारः स्वरितः (level) 

There has been a fashion to undermine Sanskrit tradition as having been an oral tradition, implying that Sanskritists did not develop writing or did not promote writing or did not advocate writing. On the contrary, it should be appreciated that Sanskritists did recognize the limitations of writing, e.g. can we write every vowel in all 18 ways of its pronunciation ? 

The phonological thought can be referred back to the earlier discussion of the word शब्दः. In dictionaries, one finds many meanings of this word शब्दः. 

Etymologically one can decipher शब्दः as शप् इति (ध्वनिम्) ददातीति शब्दः (उपपद-तत्पुरुषः) Note 

  • शप् शपँ आक्रोशे भ्वादिः, उभयपदी, सकर्मकः, अनिट् 
  • शप् शपँ आक्रोशे दिवादिः, उभयपदी, सकर्मकः, अनिट् 

(a) In Apte’s dictionary

  • शप् – A technical term used by Pāṇini for the conjugational sign अ inserted between the root and the terminations of the conjugational tenses in the first class of roots.
  • शप् – ind. A particle and prefix implying assent or compliance.
  • शप् 1, 4 U. (शपति-ते, शप्यति-ते, शप्त) 1 To curse, execrate; … -Caus. (शापयति-ते) 1 To bind by an oath, conjure; शापित

(b) For this word शब्दः there is 4-columns-long detail in शब्दकल्पद्रुमः A couple of grammatically interesting details are

  •  (चुरा०-पर०-अक०-सेट् ।) क, शब्दयति । सोपसर्ग-स्त्वाविष्कृतौ मतः । प्रशब्दयति गभीरमत्यर्थं शिष्यः स्फुटीकरोतीत्यर्थः ।
  • पुं, (शब्द + भावे घञ् । यद्बा, शप आक्रोशे + “शाशपिभ्यां ददनौ ।” उणा ० ४ । ९७ । इति दन् । पकारस्य बकारः ।) श्रोत्रग्राह्यगुणपदार्थ-विशेषः । तत्पर्य्यायः । निनादः २ निनदः ३ ध्वनिः ४ ध्वानः ५ रवः ६ स्वनः ७ स्वानः ८ निर्घोषः ९ निर्हादः १० नादः ११ निःस्वानः १२ निःस्वनः १३ आरवः १४ आरावः १५ संरावः १६ विरावः १७ । इत्यमरः ॥

This etymological detail of the word शब्दः underscores the need to understand संज्ञा-s in अष्टाध्यायी from their etymological aspect. Actually study of Vedas can be a complete study only when they are studied by all six aspects षडङ्गाभ्यासः, शिक्षा phonetics निरुक्त etymology छन्द prosody ज्योतिष् auspicious time कल्प ritual व्याकरणम् grammar.These are mentioned in a couplet of verses ⇒ 

छन्दः पादौ तु वेदस्य हस्तौ कल्पोऽथ पठ्यते ।

ज्योतिषामयनं चक्षुर्-निरुक्तं श्रोत्रमुच्यते ।

शिक्षा घ्राणंस्तु वेदस्य मुखं व्याकरणं स्मृतम् । 

तस्मात्साङ्गमधीत्येव ब्रह्मलोके महीयते ॥ 

Another view of षडङ्गाभ्यासः is study of संहिता the text, पद the words, क्रम syntax, निरुक्त etymology, छन्द (phonetics and phonology + prosody + figures of speech) and व्याकरणम् grammar. The study can and should go further to delve deeper into भावार्थः, which are sort of summarized in the उपनिषदः. So, study of Vedas should also include study of उपनिषदः i.e. of भावार्थः. This logic applies to the study of any Sanskrit text. 

शुभमस्तु

-o-O-o-

 

 

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