संज्ञा-s in अष्टाध्यायी

संज्ञा-s in अष्टाध्यायी

On Tuesday Dec. 12, 2017, I attended Dr. Malhar Kulkarni’s व्याख्यानम् on सूत्र-s 1’1’20 to 1’1’23.

I indulged in further deliberation of my own, with a focus on सूत्र-s 1’1’20 and 1’1’22 . This post is loud thinking of that deliberation. The two सूत्र-s are दाधा घ्वदाप् (1’1’20) and तरप्-तमपौ घः (1’1’22). Both of these are  संज्ञासूत्र-s, because सूत्रम् – दाधा घ्वदाप् (1’1’20) defines what all is denoted by the संज्ञा घु.  The other सूत्रम् – तरप्-तमपौ घः (1’1’22) defines what all is denoted by the संज्ञा घः 

As is obvious, संज्ञा घु has many elements encompassed by दाधा excepting of course दाप्. The point is “संज्ञा घु has many elements”. That became the clue for my deliberation and I proceeded to check whether most संज्ञा-s have more-than-one elements. And lo ! That appears to be THE fact !

In mathematics, entity having a number of elements is called a “set”. By that token संज्ञा-s in अष्टाध्यायी seem to be names given to sets. All प्रत्याहार-s are basically sets and they connote names or संज्ञा-s of respective sets. For example, अच् is the name of the set, which has all vowels as its elements; हल् is the name of the set, which has all consonants as its elements. Even the very first सूत्रम् – वृद्धिरादैच् (1’1’1) defines the संज्ञा “वृद्धिः” which has the elements आत् and ऐच्; Actually ऐच् is a sub-set having elements ऐ and औ; आत् is the other sub-set of वृद्धिः, and has only a single element आत्. So वृद्धिः is a “union” of two subsets आत् and ऐच्. 

Set theory in mathematics recognizes even null sets. I wonder, whether अष्टाध्यायी has any संज्ञा, which is a null set !

In सूत्रम् – दाधा घ्वदाप् (1’1’20), exception of दाप् is like intersection of a set to leave an element out. 

I wonder whether relating concepts of set theory can give a good insight into the structure of अष्टाध्यायी. 

I feel like complimenting myself for the deliberation and observation that संज्ञा-s in अष्टाध्यायी are names given to sets. Elements of sets are detailed primarily in two different ways. The सूत्र-s such as वृद्धिरादैच् (1’1’1), दाधा घ्वदाप् (1’1’20), etc. detail their elements in the particular संज्ञासूत्र itself. But elements of some सूत्र-s such as सर्वादीनि सर्वनामानि (1’1’27) are better detailed in गणपाठ. In this context it would be interesting to see my post “What is गणपाठ ?“.

The third way of identifying a संज्ञा and detailing its elements is to do that in different सूत्र-s. A good example is the सूत्रम् – सुप्तिङन्तं पदम् (1’4’14). There are two संज्ञा-s included here सुप् and तिङ्. Elements of सुप् are detailed in स्वौजसमौट्-छष्टाभ्याम्-भिस्-ङे-भ्याम्-भ्यस्-ङसि-भ्याम्-भ्यस्-ङसोसाम्-ङि-ओस्-सुप् (4’1’2). Elements of तिङ् are detailed in तिप्-तस्-झि-सिप्-वस्-थ-मिब्-वस्-मस्-ताताम्-झ-थासाथाम्-ध्व-मिड्-वहि-महिङ् (3’4’78). 

Actually सूत्रम् – सुप्तिङन्तं पदम् (1’4’14) is interesting, because it also contains and defines a third संज्ञा viz. पदम्. Whatever is सुबन्त or तिङन्त, i.e. whatever has in its ending सुप् or तिङ्, i.e. whatever has either a सुप् or तिङ् suffix, is a पदम्. And as defined by this सूत्रम् – सुप्तिङन्तं पदम् (1’4’14),  पदम् is a set having two sub-sets सुप् and तिङ्.

  • On a different note, I am a bit concerned of this definition of पदम् as सुप्तिङन्तं पदम्. This is because there are many पद-s, which are neither सुबन्त nor तिङन्त, e. g. क्त्वान्त- or तुमन्त-कृदन्त-s. To my mind, these are also पद-s, because they qualify the सूत्रम् – समर्थः पदविधिः (2’1’1). They are, for sure, समर्थ, meaningful and significant.

Anyway, we can grant that संज्ञा is a terminology of Sanskrit grammar. If so, one wonders what is the terminology in English grammar equivalent to संज्ञा ? In English grammar, among parts of speech, there are nouns and pronouns. Since pronouns are same as सर्वनामानि, one can think that नामानि would correspond with nouns. Since संज्ञा-s are also given names, संज्ञा also seemingly corresponds with ‘noun’. 

Looking at स्वौजसमौट्-छष्टाभ्याम्-भिस्-ङे-भ्याम्-भ्यस्-ङसि-भ्याम्-भ्यस्-ङसोसाम्-ङि-ओस्-सुप् (4’1’2) and तिप्-तस्-झि-सिप्-वस्-थ-मिब्-वस्-मस्-ताताम्-झ-थासाथाम्-ध्व-मिड्-वहि-महिङ् (3’4’78), it can be thought that elements of सुप् and तिङ् enumerated in these सूत्र-s are not संज्ञा-s; they are nouns नामानि of सुप्-प्रत्यय-s and तिङ्-प्रत्यय-s.  I guess, this line of thinking can help distinguish between नामानि and संज्ञा-s. Then we can say that English grammar has nothing equivalent to संज्ञा-s.

That is some loud thinking about संज्ञा-s in अष्टाध्यायी. 

शुभमस्तु !



Comprehensive study of grammar of Sanskrit

What all must be studied for complete study of grammar of Sanskrit ? One general impression is that one should study and then the job is done. But there is a श्लोक

अनधीते महाभाष्ये व्यर्था सा पदमञ्जरी ।
अधीते तु महाभाष्ये व्यर्था सा पदमञ्जरी ॥

Here, the word पदमञ्जरी usually refers to अष्टाध्यायी by पाणिनि.  So, here we have reference to two books – अष्टाध्यायी by पाणिनि and महाभाष्य by पतञ्जलि respectively. Original of the two is अष्टाध्यायी by पाणिनि, though, in this श्लोक more credence is accorded to study of महाभाष्य by पतञ्जलि.

However in his सिद्धान्तकौमुदी, भट्टोजी दीक्षित pays his tributes as मुनित्रयं नमस्कृत्य. This seems to be so, because Sanskrit grammar is itself known as त्रिमुनि-व्याकरणम्. The त्रिमुनि-s are पाणिनि, वररुचि कात्यायन and पतञ्जलि  Contribution of वररुचि कात्यायन is by his वृत्ति-s, which often explain सूत्र-s in अष्टाध्यायी by supplementary सूत्र-s, as if अष्टाध्यायी becomes more complete by the supplementary सूत्र-s in वृत्ति-s of वररुचि कात्यायन. Because of his वृत्ति-s वररुचि कात्यायन is also known as the वार्त्तिक (वृत्तीनां कर्ता).

अष्टाध्यायी is the base both for महाभाष्य by पतञ्जलि and वृत्ति-s of वररुचि कात्यायन. That is why it is said in the above श्लोक, that if one studies महाभाष्य, there is no need to study अष्टाध्यायी separately.

Actually language has two aspects – (1) words and (2) using the words to make a meaningful expression. The second part “using the words to make a meaningful expression” often becomes the exercise of composing a sentence.

From what I have understood, अष्टाध्यायी’s focus is on words, rather on formatting of words. This is so, because in Sanskrit every word to be used in a sentence, rather, for any word to be worthy of use in a sentence, it has to be a formatted word.

Second aspect of Sanskrit is freedom from syntax. In Sanskrit the formatting of words makes the words so much self-same, that they can be placed anywhere, in any sequence or order. Although the word order is most commonly the Subject-Object-Verb (SOV) order, that is not any rigid word order.

Formatting of words is best detailed in अष्टाध्यायी. But study of अष्टाध्यायी should not be understood as study only of the eight chapters, four quarters of each chapter. There are important परिशिष्ट-s, which are part and parcel of अष्टाध्यायी. They are गणपाठः, धातुपाठः, लिङ्गानुशासनम्, उणादिसूत्राणि, फिट्सूत्राणि, पाणिनीया शिक्षा.

Most books on अष्टाध्यायी detail सूत्राणि in the thirty-two quarters in अष्टाध्यायी. But to make the study of Sanskrit grammar complete, one must study also all the परिशिष्ट-s.

One method of study has been as propounded in his सिद्धान्तकौमुदी by भट्टोजी दीक्षित. But सिद्धान्तकौमुदी is said to be a composition of 17th century, just about 400 years old. There certainly have been many studies of अष्टाध्यायी, evidenced by many commentaries, called as वृत्ति-s, some well-known among them being काशिका-वृत्तिः, न्यासः, मनोरमा, बाल-मनोरमा, प्रौढ-मनोरमा, तत्त्व-बोधिनी, etc.

Although Sanskrit offers quite some freedom of syntax, there have been some definite concepts of composing sentences. These are possibly best detailed in वाक्पदीयम् of भर्तृहरि, said to be step brother of राजा विक्रमादित्य of 5th AD.

Another aspect of Sanskrit language, which is considered as part of its grammar is adorned speech, adorned by rhythm or by fancy.

  • Adornment of speech by rhythm is covered in study of prosody छन्दःशास्त्रम्, also called as शब्दालङ्कार.
  • Adornment of speech by fancy is covered in अर्थालङ्कार.

As mentioned earlier, every word to be worthy of use in a sentence needs to be formatted. In formatting there is morphology through different steps called as प्रक्रिया. There have been studies focusing only on the morphological aspects of formatting of words and are available in books such as प्रक्रियासर्वस्वम्.

Actually etymological studies व्युत्पत्तिविचार may be considered as the converse of morphological studies. But etymological studies can go deeper than just the converse of morphological studies. I came across a book व्युत्पत्तिवाद published by राष्ट्रिय संस्कृत संस्थानम् http://www.sanskrit.nic.in/DigitalBook/V/Vyutpattivada_2016.pdf

One more aspect of study of words is study of synonyms and antonyms. Sanskrit has a great old tradition of such study. Two such studies which are monumental, are निघण्टु-निरुक्त by यास्काचार्य and अमरकोश (actual name नामलिङ्गानुशासनम्) by अमरसिंह.

I hope this compilation becomes useful to anyone wanting to undertake comprehensive study of grammar of Sanskrit.

शुभमस्तु !



वैयाकरणसिद्धान्तकारिकाः – Introduction

श्रीभट्टोजीदीक्षितविरचिताः वैयाकरणसिद्धान्तकारिकाः

I have a book as above, published by आनन्दाश्रमसंस्था पुणे.

श्रीभट्टोजीदीक्षित is more well-known for his सिद्धान्तकौमुदी a treatise on Sanskrit grammar. In सिद्धान्तकौमुदी the सूत्र-s of पाणिनि are arranged according to topics in grammar. Possibly सिद्धान्तकौमुदी set up a style of studying Sanskrit grammar by topics and by that it became the first प्रकरणग्रन्थः

श्रीभट्टोजीदीक्षित seems to have a particular liking for the word सिद्धान्त. This composition वैयाकरणसिद्धान्तकारिकाः also includes the word सिद्धान्त. Interestingly, whereas सिद्धान्तकौमुदी is mostly prose वैयाकरणसिद्धान्तकारिकाः is all poetry. Calibre of such people asश्रीभट्टोजीदीक्षित composing a scholarly first प्रकरणग्रन्थः on Sanskrit grammar and also composing well-metered poetry, that too on Sanskrit grammar leaves one amazed.

For an overview of वैयाकरणसिद्धान्तकारिकाः it would be good to glance through the topics, which can be noted from the first page and also on the contents page.

From the first page

  1. टीकाकारोपोद्घातः –  5 श्लोकाः by कौण्डभट्टवर्यः
  2. प्रतिज्ञाश्लोकः by भट्टोजीदीक्षितवर्यः

From the contents Page –

  1. धात्वर्थाख्यातसामान्यार्थनिर्णयः 20 श्लोकाः (2-21)
  2. लकारविशेषार्थनिरूपणम् 2 श्लोकौ (22, 23)
  3. सुबर्थनिर्णयः 1 श्लोकः (24)
  4. नामार्थनिर्णयः 3 श्लोकाः (25-27)
  5. समासशक्तिनिर्णयः 8 श्लोकाः (28-35)
  6. शक्तिनिर्णयः 3 श्लोकाः (36, 37, 38)
  7. नञर्थनिर्णयः 2 श्लोकौ (39, 40)
  8. निपातद्योतकत्वनिर्णयः 7 श्लोकाः (41-47)
  9. भावप्रत्ययार्थनिर्णयः 3 श्लोकाः (48-50)
  10. देवताप्रत्ययार्थनिर्णयः 3 श्लोकाः (51-53)
  11. अभेदैकत्वसंख्यायां वृत्तौ माननिर्णयः 1 श्लोकः (54)
  12. उद्देश्यविधेययोः संख्याविवक्षानिर्णयः 3 श्लोकाः (55-57)
  13. क्त्वाद्यर्थनिर्णयः 1 श्लोकः (58)
  14. स्फोटवादः 3 श्लोकाः (59-61)
  15. पदादिस्फोटनिरूपणम् 11 श्लोकाः (62-72)

The book published by आनन्दाश्रमसंस्था पुणे contains not just the 72 श्लोकाः but also a commentary in Sanskrit by कौण्डभट्ट. The commentary is named as वैयाकरणभूषणसार by कौण्डभट्ट the commentator. The commentary is prose.

Since both the वैयाकरणसिद्धान्तकारिकाः and the वैयाकरणभूषणसार-commentary are in Sanskrit, for myself to understand what is there in the book, I need to translate. I may as well share it on my blog on संस्कृतव्याकरणस्य अध्ययनम् so that comments from learned readers will improve the understanding.

One can make some guess about what is there in the book by looking at the contents. As many as 12 out of 17 sections have in their title, the word निर्णयः. One can deduce that all those topics offer instances, where logical decision will have to be arrived at. Eight of the 12 topics also contain the word अर्थ. One can hence deduce that these topics offer instances where selection of an appropriate interpretation would be needed. Almost at all places the words अर्थ and निर्णयः are in that order. So, the कारिकाः may be offering definitive guidance on अर्थनिर्णयः i.e. appropriate interpretation. That sounds appealing and interesting for a detailed study.

By the way, meaning of the word कारिका is given in Apte’s dictionary as “.. A memorial verse, or a collection of such verses, on grammatical, philosophical, or scientific subjects, e. g. Bhattojī Dīkṣita’s Kārikās on grammar; called वैयाकरणसिद्धान्तकारिका; सांख्यकारिका…”. Since कारिका means memorial verse(s), श्रीभट्टोजीदीक्षित certainly deemed them to be worthy of memorizing. That is why they are verses.

There are people who have memorized all the 3994 पाणिनिसूत्र-s of his अष्टाध्यायी. Some educationists demean such education by memorization as rote-learning. But one must acknowledge that it is memorization which helped to make available so much of Sanskrit literature even though the libraries of Nalanda and Taxila were burnt. The libraries are said to have been so huge, that the embers are said to have kept burning for so long as 26 days !

I can approach the task

  • By translation verse by verse, of वैयाकरणसिद्धान्तकारिका and its commentary वैयाकरणभूषणसार or
  • scripting वैयाकरणसिद्धान्तकारिका at least topic by topic, if not scripting all the 72 verses in one go.

शुभमस्तु !



क्त-क्तवतु-प्रत्ययाभ्यां कृदन्ताः|

क्त-क्तवतु-प्रत्ययाभ्यां कृदन्ताः |

(सन्दर्भग्रन्थः – “कृत्-प्रत्ययविश्लेषण”-इति लेखकः डॉ. गोपबन्धु मिश्र-वर्यः, चौखंबा विद्याभवनेन वाराणस्यां प्रकाशितः । अत्र विवेचनं तु हिन्दीभाषायाम् ।)

Verbal Derivatives with क्त/क्तवतु-suffixes

(1) These two are most common derivatives of verbal roots धातु-s in संस्कृत.

(2) In Apte’s dictionary the derivatives

  • with क्त-प्रत्यय are denoted by the abbreviation p. p. (Past Passive Participle)
  • those with क्तवतु-प्रत्यय are denoted by the abbreviation pres. p. (Present participle)
  • The derivatives with क्तवतु-प्रत्यय are just extensions of those with क्त-प्रत्यय, with an additional वत् added to them. For example from धातु कृ, with क्त-प्रत्यय it is कृत, with क्तवतु-प्रत्यय it becomes कृतवत्
  • Hence both derivatives can be substantially studied together.   
  • It should be noted that those with क्त-प्रत्यय have Past tense and passive voice inherent.
  • But those with क्तवतु-प्रत्यय have present tense and active voice inherent. The connotation in Apte’s dictionary as क्तवतु-प्रत्यय = pres. p. (Present participle) is not convincing. It seems more appropriate to consider that past tense is common to both derivatives with क्त-प्रत्यय and with क्तवतु-प्रत्यय. There is only change of voice.
  • One can say that passive voice inherent in derivatives with क्त-प्रत्यय can be transformed into active voice by using derivatives with क्तवतु-प्रत्यय. For example,
    • The sculpture was seen by me (Passive voice) – मया शिल्पं दृष्टम् |
    • I saw the sculpture (Active voice) – अहं शिल्पं दृष्टवान् |
      • Although अहं शिल्पं दृष्टवान् is mentioned for the meaning “I saw the sculpture” (Past Simple) the Sanskrit sentence can as well connote “I have seen the sculpture” अहं शिल्पं दृष्टवान् (अस्मि) (Present perfect) or “I had seen the sculpture” अहं शिल्पं दृष्टवान् (आसम्) (Past perfect). The verbs in brackets (अस्मि) or (आसम्) may not be actually uttered, but can be understood by context. Hence the verbal derivative दृष्टवान् can be taken to be serving the function of the verb.
      • Same logic applies to मया शिल्पं दृष्टम् = “The sculpture has been seen by me” मया शिल्पं दृष्टम् (अस्ति) (Present perfect) or “The sculpture had been seen by me” मया शिल्पं दृष्टम् (आसीत्) (Past perfect).

(3) In Sanskrit, these derivatives are not just participles, but they are adjectival. Hence they have forms in all three genders, all eight cases and all three numbers.

(4) What is interesting in studying these Verbal Derivatives with क्त/क्तवतु-suffixes is their formation processes प्रक्रिया-s. I do not intend to detail the प्रक्रिया-s in their entirety. But I would like to get a classification-view.

(5) First of all, the suffix क्त (क् + त) affixes as त, since the क्-part gets dropped as a part of the प्रक्रिया, Or we can say that what suffix affixes as त, has been given a grammatical name as क्त, to distinguish it from other suffixes.

(6) Also suffix क्तवतु affixes as वत्

(7) It should be good to focus primarily on suffix क्त.

(8) The formation processes प्रक्रिया-s yield following types of क्त-कृदन्त-s.

  1. Simple affix of त e.g. भा → भात, मा → मात, या → यात, रा → रात, वा → वात, ज्ञा → ज्ञात, इ →इत,, जि → जित, ई → ईत, नी → नीत, कृ → कृत, मृ → मृत  
  2. By some modification of vowel in the धातु, e.g. गै → गीत, दा → दत्त, ध्यै → ध्यात, पा → पीत,
  3. By dropping of the ending consonant of the धातु, e.g. गम् → गत, नम् → नत, यम् → यत, रम् → रत
  4. By substitution of the consonant in the धातु, e.g. अद् → अत्त, धा → हित,
  5. By suffix त becoming ट, e.g. इष् → इष्ट, मिष् → मिष्ट, विष् → विष्ट, शिष् → शिष्ट, पुष् → पुष्ट,
  6. By suffix त becoming ट and also change in the ending consonant of the धातु, e.g. नश् → नष्ट, दृश् → दृष्ट, स्पृश् → स्पृष्ट, पिश् → पिष्ट, पृच्छ् → पृष्ट
  7. By suffix त becoming न or ण, e.g. ली → लीन, पूर् → पूर्ण (also see पॄ),
  8. By suffix त becoming न or ण and also change in the vowel of the धातु, e.g. क्षि → क्षीण, हा → हीन, जॄ –> जीर्ण, तॄ → तीर्ण, पॄ → पूर्ण, स्तॄ → स्तीर्ण,  
  9. By suffix त becoming न or ण and also change in the ending consonant of the धातु, e.g. अद् → अन्न, खिद् → खिन्न, छिद् → छिन्न, भिद् → भिन्न
  10. By suffix त becoming द and also change in the ending consonant of the धातु, e.g. शप् → शब्द
  11. By suffix त becoming ध and also change in the ending consonant of the धातु, e.g. दह् → दग्ध, दिह् → दिग्ध, दुह् → दुग्ध, मुह् → मुग्ध (also मुह् → मूढ) क्षुभ् → क्षुब्ध, स्तम्भ् → स्तब्ध,
  12. By influx of इ or ई e.g. खाद् → खादित, शाप् → शापित, गृह् → गृहीत, जॄ –> जारित, दम्भ् → दंभित, मिश्र् → मिश्रित, वाञ्छ् → वाञ्छित, 
  13. By influx of इ or ई (called as इडागमः) and substantial change in the धातु, e.g. ऋ → अर्पित
  14. Causative णिजन्त, desiderative सन्नन्त, repetitive यङन्त forms of धातु-s often get इडागमः e. g. पठ् → पाठय् → पाठित, स्था → स्थापय् → स्थापित, स्तम्भ् → स्तम्भय् → स्तंभित, पा → पिपास् → पिपासित,

(9) In his book डॉ. गोपबन्धु मिश्र has devoted as many as 116 paras when discussing क्त-कृदन्त-s. I hope, the above detailing covers most of the major varieties of क्त-कृदन्त-s. All the क्त-कृदन्त-s can be proved by their derivation. डॉ. गोपबन्धु मिश्र has done that in his book. My simple objective has been to just compile the major varieties. I shall be obliged, if विद्वांसः would add any varieties, missed by me.

(10) As can be seen some धातु-s would have more than one optional forms, e.g. मुह् → मुग्ध (also मुह् → मूढ). The optional forms connote some different shade of meaning. For example मुग्ध means perplexed, मूढ means befooled.

(11) Also some different धातु-s would have same form, e.g. पॄ → पूर्ण, also पूर् → पूर्ण. This becomes so, especially when the meanings of the different धातु-s are identical.

शुभमस्तु !