Update: 2016-08-20 06:39 PM -0400


A Practical Sanskrit Dictionary


by A. A. Macdonell, 1893,
http://www.sanskrit-lexicon.uni-koeln.de/scans/MDScan/index.php?sfx=jpg; 1929.
Nataraj ed. (reprint of 1914ed.), 1st in 2006, 2012.

Edited, with additions from Pali sources, by U Kyaw Tun (UKT) (M.S., I.P.S.T., USA) and staff of Tun Institute of Learning (TIL) . Not for sale. No copyright. Free for everyone. Prepared for students and staff of TIL Research Station, Yangon, MYANMAR :  http://www.tuninst.net , www.romabama.blogspot.com

index.htm | Top

Contents of this page

Scope of the work
Books specially referred to
Exclusion of References

• Watch an animation of Meghadûta, मेघदूत , 'Cloud Messanger'
a book specially referred to by Macdonell :
- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kmyUYFFY4UU 140628
• Listen to Mingun Sayadaw U Vicittasarabivamsa reciting {mau:ra.þoat} <))
• and compare it to Ms. Anuradha Paudwa singing Gayatri Mantra <))

UKT notes :
Battle of Ten Kings : Dasharadnya Yuddha  दाशराज्ञ युद्ध
Mallinātha Sūri (1350-1450) - the critic
Panini - the Indian grammarian
Petersburg dictionaries : Otto von Böhtlingk (1815-1904) - the indologist
Vedic language & religion :

Contents of this page


-- by Macdonell

UKT 140625: The following is the Preface from online edition of 1893. I have found there are some variations from Preface of Nataraj ed. (reprint of 1914ed.). I have checked one with the other, and have given the page numbers from the Nataraj ed. I have added some text - very negligible, - in some places. The result is a synthesis of two prefaces.

The aim of the present work is to satisfy within the compass of a comparatively handy volume all the practical wants not only of learners of  Sanskrit but also of scholars for purposes of ordinary reading.

UKT 160820: At present Sanskrit uses the script presented on the right. However, the script used by Macdonell is the older script which is quite different. In reading Sanskrit, especially in when comparing with Pal-Myan take care of such differences. Moreover there are pairs of akshara that look alike, e.g., r1c4 घ and r4c4 ध . Such look-alikes has given me trouble especially when deciphering the innumerable vertical conjuncts of Skt-Dev.

When I began my task in 1886 there was no available work which supplied the deficiency. The only one having a somewhat similar end in view, the Sanskrit-English Lexicon of my respected teacher, the late Theodore Benfey, was already out of print. By the time, however, that my manuscript was half finished, no fewer than three small Sanskrit dictionaries had been published. It may perhaps be advisable to indicate some of the points in which the present work differs from and compares with them. In the first place, it is much more copious.  Excluding all words and meanings which occur in native lexicographers, but cannot be quoted from actual literature, my book contains nearly double as much material as any of the dictionaries in question. [UKT ¶]

The present work is, moreover, the only one of the four, which is transliterated. It can thus be used, for example, by comparative philologists not knowing a single character letter of the Devanagari akshara alphabet . [UKT ¶]

UKT 140624: Until a few years ago no one realized that Devanagari script is written in an Abugida which is fundamentally different from the Alphabet. The hallmark of the Akshara (I am using this in the same sense as Abugida) is the Viram (short for Virama) aka {a.þût} to kill the inherent vowel. I became aware of this after reading the Indic scripts in Unicode Consortium:
See - BHS-indx.htm (link chk 160820)
and proceed to derivatives of Asokan - - indic-indx.htm (link chk 160820)
and 1. Devanagari, for comparison to Pal-Myan - deva.htm (link chk 140624)
        2. Bengali, for comparison to Bur-Myan - bing.htm (link chk 140624)
        3. Tamil, for comparison to Mon-Myan - tami.htm (link chk 140624)

None of the others is etymological in any sense. This feature of my dictionary increase both its usefulness from a linguistic point of view and its practical value to the student, who will always better remember the meaning of a word, the derivation of which is made clear to him. [UKT ¶]

Lastly, this is the only one of the lexicons in question which indicates not only with respect to words, but also to their meanings, the literary period to which they belong and the frequency or rarity of their occurrence. This addition I regard as both scientifically and practically important.

Contents of this page

Scope of the Work 

The present dictionary is intended to supply the vocabulary of post-Vedic literature in general, while including those portions of Vedic literature which are readily accessible to the student in good selections. [UKT ¶ ]

UKT 130715: What is known as "Sanskrit" is now accepted to be made of two languages of different time-periods:

Pre-Panini - Vedic (or Vedic Sanskrit) allied to Tib-Bur (Tibeto-Burman) languages of original peoples who may be described as "aborigines" of the Indian subcontinent extending into the present-day Myanmarpré. They were Mother Goddess worshippers. Ancient Pyus of Myanmarpré and Harapans of the Cemetery-H culture of Upper Indus-Saraswati region belonged to this period. (UKT: need to find more.). Some were highly advanced in architecture and metallurgy. This period may thus be described as the Brass Culture (or Bronze Culture). They seemed to be largely peaceful. They were no match militarily for the invaders who came in iron implements of war. The invaders made themselves overlords and those whom they defeated their servants or Sudras . I maintain that King Abhiraza {a.Bi.ra-za} mentioned in Glass Palace Chronicles was one of the defeated leaders of this period who had sought refuge in northern Myanmarpré after being defeated in the Battle of the Ten Kings. See my note.

The above insert from Glass Palace Chronicle, Vol 1., speaks of a war between two kingdoms, Kosala and Panchala. A map of the 16 Mahajanapada of that period shows a north-west to south-east geographical alignment: Panchala {piñ~sa.la.} and Kosala {kau:þa.la.}. Since the peoples of areas north of the Ganges River still speak Tib-Bur languages, and I contend that they also spoke the same languages hundreds or thousand of years before the birth of the Gaudama Buddha. Since, the Buddha has described himself as a Kosalan, his first language or L1, must have been a Tib-Bur language.

Wikipedia article http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_the_Ten_Kings 140625 , describes the belligerents as one against an alliance of ten. The alliance lost the war. Since it is mentioned in the Glass Palace Chronicle that King Abhiraza {a.Bi.ra-za} was one of the losers, I contend that he must have been in the alliance. He would surely have brought his language - which might be called Magadhi to Tagaung between c. 4500-3500 BC. And I still further contend that the language spoken in Myanmarpré is the very language or its close descendant. Since Pali was invented in SriLanka only after the arrival of the Asokan missionaries, "Myanmar Pali" is not the one from SriLanka, but the language brought in King Abhiraza {a.Bi.ra-za}. The language spoken by Burmese monks - who were then called the "Arigyi" was nearly decimated in the religious reform of King Anawrahta but flourished under a thin veneer of "SriLankan Pali".

Post-Panini - Sanskrit or Classical Sanskrit, undoubtedly an IE (Indo-European) language formerly described as Aryan. They worshipped male deva-gods. See my note on Panini {pa-Ni.ni.} पाणिनि , who was undoubtedly a Hindu by faith.

In the Pre-Panini period, the speech & language (shown also by poetic meter) was Prakrit (or Prakrits) found on Asoka pillars. You can get a fair idea of these languages from:
¤ Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Grammar and Dictionary , by Franklin Edgerton, 1885-1963
- BHS-indx.htm (link chk 140624)
¤ Language Problem of Primitive Buddhism , by Chi Hisen-lin (1911-2009) aka  Ji Xianlin (季羡林), Journal of the Burma Research Society , XLIII, i, June 1960
- lang-probl.htm (link chk 140624).

Prakrit or Proto-language is now known as Pali. However, it must be remembered that Pali was "invented" in Sri-Lanka based on Magadhi (Tib-Bur) language brought in by the Asokan Buddhist missionaries, and the native Lanka (Austro-Asiatic). In SriLanka, Pali is written in Sinhala script. The present-day International Pali (Pali-Latin) is based on Pal-Lanka. The salient feature of this version of Pali is the hissing-sibilant /s/ which is not present in Bur-Myan, whereas in Pal-Myan, it is the non-hissing thibilant {þa.} /θ/. 

Leaving aside the Pali-Sinhala because I am totally ignorant of it, I am interested in Pal-Latin and Pal-Myanmar. My interest in Pali has led me to search for a Pali grammarian. The oldest seems to be Shin Kic-si {rhing kic~sæÑ:} or Kachchayano who seems to have lived in the days of Gautama Buddha. Since the Buddha preceded Panini, Shin Kisci preceded Panini, and Panini must have depended on the work of Shin Kicsi.
See: A Pali grammar on the basis of Kachchayano by Rev. F. Mason, 1868,
- PEG-indx.htm (link chk 140625)

After accepting that Vedic and Sanskrit are different my next question is: Was there a Vedic religion different from the present-day Hinduism? We must keep in mind that the present-day Hinduism is of three kinds, the worship of Vishnu, the worship of Siva, and the worship of Devi., each with its own "Ancient Texts" which have been rewritten again and again by the adherents down to the modern times. (I need to check the facts.) See my note on
Vedic language & religion , and also: 
Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historical_Vedic_religion 130716

All out-of- the-way technical terms, such as those of medicine, botany, astronomy [UKT: probably including astrology - one of my interests], and ritual, are excluded, except in so far as they have found their way into ordinary literary works, or occur in selections which I have expressly included. [UKT ¶]

Specifically legal and philosophical terms are, on the other hand, largely represented, owing to the inclusion in my list of the most important works belonging to the corresponding departments of the literature. Having acquired a rather extensive experience of native commentaries in connexion with my lectures to students preparing for the Honour School of Oriental Languages at Oxford, I have introduced a considerable number of grammatical and rhetorical terms also, these being necessary for the comprehension of such works as for instance the glosses of Mallinātha. [UKT ¶]

A good many words and explanations will thus be found, which either do not occur in the Petersburg dictionaries, or are, I think, less correctly given there. (Compare e.g. articles arthântaranyâsa, bahuvrihi, yathâ tathâ, vâkyabheda, vyadhikarana,, sâpekshatva, etc.)

Contents of this page

Books specially referred to

The list of books to which my dictionary specially refers, and which I drew up, when planning the work, after consultation with a pupil of Professor Buhler's', the late Dr. Schonberg, then resident in Oxford, I here append.

Books specially referred to:
UKT 140626: I plan to study Skt-Dev extensively in the future, and I need to know what books Macdonell has used, and I am looking to the list given by him.

Bhagavadgîtâ, श्रीमद्भगवद्गीता - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhagavad_Gita 140626
  Bhartrihari, Bhâshâparikkheda,
Harshkarita, Hitopadesa,
Kâdambarî, Kamandakîya-nîtisâra, Kathâsaritsâgara, Kirâtârgunîya, Kullûka, Kumârasambhava,
Mahâvîrakarita, Mâlatîmâdhava, Mâlavikâgnimitra, Manu,
  Meghadûta, मेघदूत - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meghaduta 140628
  and an animation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kmyUYFFY4UU 140628
  Mitâka, Mitâksharâ (on Yâgnavalkya), Mrikkhakatikâ, Mudrârâkshasa,
Naishadha, Nala Pankatantra,
Raghu-vamsa, Râgataramgini, Ratnâvalî, Ritusamhâra,
Sakuntalâ, Samkara (on the Vedânta-sûtras), Sisupâlavadha,
Vâsavadattâ, Vedântasâra, Venîsamhâṅkadevakarita, Vikramorvasî,
gñavalkya.[UKT ¶]

Besides all the post-Vedic selections contained in the Readers mentioned below, the list finally includes the second edition of Böhtlingk's Indische Spriiche, a florilegium of the aphoristic poetry in which Sanskrit literature is pre-eminent, well deserving to be made accessible to the English-speaking student.

With regard to Vedic literature I have taken in all that is contained in the second edition of Böhtlingk's Sanskrit-Chrestomathie, in Hillebrandt's Veda- Chrestomathie, in Lanman's Reader, and in Windisch's Zwölf Hymnen des Rigveda, besides those hymns which are prescribed to the candidates of the Honour School of Oriental Languages at Oxford (Rig-veda X, i to xxii). Peterson's 'Selected Hymns of the Rig-veda' would also hve been taken in, had they been published soon enough. [UKT ¶]

UKT 140627: "Lanman's Reader" referred to above seems to be: A Sanskrit Reader With Vocabulary and Notes, by Charles Lanman, 1884, Ginn, Heath. See: American scholar of the Sanskrit language, Charles Rockwell Lanman, (1850–1941) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Rockwell_Lanman 140627

The majority of the hymns contained in that selection are, however, already included. Apart from passages supplied in Readers, the Brâhmana period is represented by the Aitareya-Brâhmana, while the Dharma-sûtra of Gautama and the Âsvalâyana and Pâraskara Grihya-sûtras are specially selected from the latest phase of Vedic literature.

UKT 140627: The author of Dharma-sûtra, Gautama गौतम महर्षि (Hind-Dev), was one of the Seven Maharishi aka Saptarishi - and not Gautama Buddha. The list of the Seven Maharishi is not the same in different texts. See:
- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gautama_Maharishi 140627
- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saptarishi 140627

Important Vedic words, even though not occurring in the selections, have found a place in my dictionary mainly on linguistic grounds.

The number of hymns from the Rig-veda, being nearly all the best in that collection, is about one hundred and twenty. As a list of them will probably prove a convenience to students, it is here subjoined.

    I: 1, 13, 24, 32, 39, 41, 42, 50, 65, 67, 85, 92, 97, 113, 115, 118, 143, 154, 161, 162, 190;
   II: 12, 27, 38;
  III: 33, 35, 59, 62;
  IV: 19, 27, 30, 33, 42, 51, 52; (p-roman07end p-roman08begin)
   V: 11, 24, 32, 40, 81, 83, 84, 85;
  VI: 9, 50, 54, 74;
 VII: 6, 28, 33, 34, 46, 49, 54, 55, 56, 57, 61, 76, 83, 86, 87, 88, 89, 102, 103:
VIII: 14, 29, 30, 85, 91;
  IX: 1, 38, 41, 112;
   X: 1-22, 33, 34, 39, 51, 52, 85, 108, 127, 129, 137, 145, 146, 154, 168, 185.

UKT 140625: Some of the above are not just devotional hymns. They were magic spells. And some may be prayers to Rising Sun such as Gayatri Mantra which has a Pal-Myan equivalent in {mau:ra.þoat} "The Peacock Sutta". As a child of six going to a village school in KyaikHtaw village, Kungyangoan township, during WWII, I had sung once in the morning when the school begins, and again in the afternoon, to the Setting Sun, when the school ends for the day. Listen to
¤ Mingun Sayadaw U Vicittasarabivamsa reciting {mau:ra.þoat} bk-cndl-Maura-Mingun<))
and compare it to Ms. Anuradha Paudwa singing Gayatri Mantra bk-cndl-gayatri<)) (link chk 151029)
In both recitations, a prayer for knowledge and wisdom, is directed to the Sun, the source of Energy, for acquiring wisdom and knowledge.

ॐ भूर्भुवः॒ स्वः ।
  Oṃ bhūr bhuvaḥ svaḥ
तत्स॑वितुर्वरे॑ण्यं ।
  tát savitúr váreṇ(i)yaṃ
भ॒र्गो॑ दे॒वस्य॑ धीमहि। ।
  bhárgo devásya dhīmahi
धियो॒ यो नः॑ प्रचो॒दया॑त्॥ ।
  dhíyo yó naḥ pracodáyāt

Listen to Gayatri Mantra bk-cndl-gayatri<)) (link chk 151029)

The word नः «naḥ» 'our' from the last line of Gayatri Mantra was the eye-opener for me. It showed me a different use of Visarga {wic~sa.pauk} from its usual Bur-Myan usage. It led me to Mon-Myan {na:.}. Skt-Dev नः «naḥ» 'our' is Bur-Myan {ngaa.} 'to me'.
For a word by word translation of Gayatri Mantra, see:
- http://www.gayatri.info/gayatri-mantra---word-for-word-translation 140627
Maybe my prayer for wisdom and knowledge has been answered!

UKT 140627: I usually shorten Visarga {wic~sa.pauk} to {wic~sa.}. Note also the "triple dot" in Romabama of {na:.} which is derived from Tamil Visarga ஃ (U+0B83).


Contents of this page


In my original plan I [Macdonell] had contemplated making a separate article of each word, simple and compound, printed in Devaâgarî type as well as transliterated. [UKT ¶]

UKT 120607: Macdonell has used a method of collecting the compounds under a particular heading, and then sub-grouping the individual entries to save space.

See: MCc-indx.htm > MC-c41-indx.htm > p142.htm for my method of extracting, marked with ©, a particular entry from such a subgroup such as निरुक्त nirukta [ nir-ukta ] for picking out [ -ukti ] . I have to check the accuracy of picking with the entry in Monier-Williams (p553 col3).

Reflection, however, soon led me [Macdonell] to abandon this scheme for that of arranging compounds in a group under a heading compounds is given in transliteration (see, for instance, article amrita). When the number of such compounds is large, they have been split up into several groups with reference to the initial of the second member (see p. 173) [UKT ¶].

UKT 140628: Page 173 referred to by Macdonell deals with words beginning with «prati-». Prati प्रति «prati» spelled in Romabama with {p~ra.} - not {pra.} - is ad. with verbs and °- with nouns , against, counter; back, in return; ...

Note how Romabama differentiates {p~ra.} - the disyllabic conjuncts - from {pra.} - the monosyllabic medial. Skt-Dev has only disyllabic conjuncts, whereas it is only in Bur-Myan (of Irrawaddy basin dialect) that we find the non-rhotic monosyllabic {pra.} which sounds like / {pya.}/. Rakhine dialect of Bur-Myan and Pal-Myan pronounces {pra.ti.} as rhotic monosyllabic.

The result of this change has been a saving of about 100 pages on the estimate of 480 pages according to the earlier plan, and that too although I have introduced rather more matter than I had then intended. [UKT ¶]

I [Macdonell] believe that this saving of apace will moreover prove an actual advantage from the practical point of view, because the eye will find a word more quickly thus than if it had to run down columns of separate articles. A glance at pages 173 to 175 will probably convince the student of the correctness of this opinion. A dictionary being a means to an end, a saving of time in its use is obviously an important object.

As to the arrangement of individual articles, the transliteration of the Devanagari word is followed, in the case of nouns, by the derivation (in brackets ) where this cannot be made sufficiently clear by the employment of hyphens in the transliteration (see e.g. bhrigu, muhûrta, loka). Next follow the meanings in close juxtaposition,, so that the eye may take them all in at a glance if possible.

My aim has been to give the senses of all words in the historical order of development. Then come the special uses of the cases, and last of all idiomatic combinations (see buddhi , manas). When cases are mentioned, they are given in the order of Sanskrit grammar. The feminine form of adjectives is given in parentheses immediately after 'a'; thus 'paurusha ,(i).' When no feminine is stated, it must be assumed to be a or else not quotable. [UKT ¶]

Adjective compounds ending in participles are described as participles, e.g. su-gata, srotra-peya. This enables me to make an important distinction in sense without adding a long explanation. Thus suki-smita is described  as an adjective, because smita is here really a noun at the end of a Bahuvrihi compound . Again, any confusion in the mind of the beginner between secondary adjectives like samañgan-îya and future participles like bodhanîya is by this means avoided.

At first I thought of employing figures to indicate distinct differences of meaning. But the difficulty, in many cases, of determining a full interval of meaning , and the large waste of space [there is no page break here in the Nataraj ed.] involved, induced me to reject their use for this purpose, especially as the need is sufficiently met by the employment of the semi-colon ( see Punctuation). I have therefore only used figures either to distinguish words which have the same form but differ etymologically (as verbs like ruh or nouns like sam-udra and as-mudra), re to clearly mark off groups of meaning (as in darsana).

Unnecessary repetition has often been avoided by the use of parentheses. Thus when samâhita-mati is defined as '(having an) attentive (mind),' the meaning intended is, that its equivalent is strictly speaking ' having an attentive mind,' though it may ordinarily be rendered by 'attentive.' The same object is attained by the use of dashes, implying that an obvious word or words are to be supplied from what precedes or follows. Thus sat-kîrti is defined as ' f. good reputation; a having a-, which of course must be understood to mean ' having a good reputation' ( ep. also dîrgha-sattra, pâtana, vidhâtaya).

Mainly for the sake of convenience in attaching suffixes and the second members of compounds, nouns have been given in the weak  or middle bases. Verbal roots have similarly been given in their weak forms with a view to uniformity. Though I do not think that I have been absolutely consistent in this respect, I believe I have been sufficiently so for practical purposes.

I have sometimes been obliged to sacrifice a strictly scientific treatment to practical exigencies by admitting such suffixes as -tâ and -maya in the long articles made up of compounds ( such as that under mitra). Otherwise I should have been compelled to divide a long paragraph in the middle merely in order to print an unimportant word in Devanâgarî type . Not  much harm can after all result from this, as not even the tyro would be likely to confound such suffixes with regular words. To obviate the difficulty by placing such words out of their regular alphabetical [UKT: abugida] order would have entailed a much more serious drawback on the practical side. [UKT ¶ ]

In the case of important proper names I have generally added a few concise remarks together with approximate dates as far as these can be determined in the light of the most recent research ( see e.g. Bhavabhûti). As definitions of technical terms are sometimes almost unintelligible without illustrative examples, the latter have been added where it seemed necessary (see,  for instance, samâsokti).

In articles treating of verbs, the conjugational class is first stated together with the voice in which it is conjugated. When the latter is omitted, the verb must be understood to be both active and (p-roman08end p-roman09begin) middle. Next comes the present base or bases in transliteration, followed by the meanings of the verb arranged on the same principle as in the case of nouns, the idiomatic uses being stated at the end. After this are added the present passive (generally omitted) with the past passive participle, the causal, the desiderative, and the intensive (when these forms occur), with their respective perfect participles passives in this order.

The principle I had in view in treating the perfect participle passive, was to give it under the verb when the meanings are merely verbal, but to make a separate article of it where adjectival senses predominate. I feel that I have not been thoroughly consistent in this respect. It is, however, not a matter of great moment.

The verbal prepositions are arranged in alphabetical order after the last form of the simple verb with which they are used. A scientific as well as a practical consideration determined me to concentrate them in this manner. On the one hand, these prefixes are separable in the Veda, while on the other a large amount of space is saved by making a single article of verbal root and the prepositions with which it may be combined. Otherwise separate head-lines in Devanâgarî as well as transliteration would have to be printed. Four times as much space would thus be occupied as under the alternative system. Nor would anything be thus gained in convenience, unless ( to obviate reference to the simple verb) the present base and other forms were added. This would involve a further waste of space.

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Exclusion of References

I have acted on the principle that a dictionary should give all references or none. The former alternative was, of course, out of the question in a practical work. It might, it is true, have been useful to state where a word occurs, out of the questions in a practical work. It might, it is true, have been useful to state where a word occurs which is not to be found in other dictionaries. [UKT ¶]

My rare deviations from the rule are, however, solely limited to passages in which the meaning of a particular word is unknown, or where the definition  is made clearer by the reference, as in the case of samudga or sarvatobhadra. Partial references have, I think a tendency to make students too dependent on them in determining the meaning of a word in any given passage. The omission of such references is more than compensated for by the method which I have followed. I have endeavoured to limit the meaning of word as far as possible to parallel instances by indicating the case which it governs, the word in context with [there is no page break here in the Nataraj ed.]  which it is employed, the literary period or department to which it belongs, and the frequency or rarity its occurrence. An examination of such articles as lohita or √2. ruh will illustrate my meaning.

UKT: The section on Akshara Alphabetic order {ak~hka.ra siñ} is in next file.

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UKT notes

The Battle of the Ten Kings

Dasharadnya Yuddha दाशराज्ञ युद्ध

-- UKT 140625
I have read the story of the Battle of Ten Kings from quite a few sources. I have even conjectured that King Abhiraza who founded the ancient kingdom of Tagaung in northern Myanmarpré was the defeated leader of the coalition who lost the war and had to seek refuge in northern Myanmarpré. See Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_the_Ten_Kings 140625 .

The following is another account in a blog, where the author relates the events to verses in the Rig Véda.

From: http://historyindianized.blogspot.ca/2012/08/the-battle-of-ten-kings-dashradnya.html 140625

न चोरुहार्यं न च राजहार्यं न भ्रातृभाज्यं न च भारकारि |

व्यये कृते वर्धतेव नित्यं विद्याधनं सर्वधनप्रधानं |

" Knowledge can neither be stolen by thieves, nor can be taken away by kings. It can neither be divided in brothers nor is a load on one's shoulders.

"The more you give it, the more you get it back, in this way, the wealth of knowledge is the best wealth"

UKT: Read the story in Wikipedia. The event leading to war was the rivalry between two Rishis:
Vashishta  -- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vashishta 140624
and Vishvamitra , the ex-king turned rishi -- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vishvamitra 140624.
Vishvamitra was the rishi who succumbed to the charms Menaka the Apsara and fathered the maid Shakuntala. He later repented and became a more powerful rishi, and authored the Gayatri Mantra. It is a mantra found in the Rig, Yajur, and Sama Vedas. Gayathri is actually a "Chandas" or meter.

Note: When a rishi has overcome "sensuality, specifically sex", then we may apply the Bur-Myan term {waiz~za-Bo:tau} to the rishi. Since Vashishta had a wife, and Vishvamitra did sex with Menaka, both are not {waiz~za-Bo:tau}. However, after Vishvamitra rejected both the sex-partner, and the offspring, and after practicing severe yogic practices, he fully recovered his lost powers. Now and only now being free from sensuality, could he be termed a {waiz~za-Bo:tau}.

Go back Battle-Ten-note-b

Contents of this page

Mallinātha Sūri

-UKT 140626
This eminent Sanskrit critic had belonged to the time-period 1350-1450 CE. We take note of the key events in Myanmarpré:
1313-02-11. King Thihathu moves capital to Pinya.
1315-05-16: Myinsaing Kingdom splits into Sagaing Kingdom and Pinya Kingdom.
(- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_Burmese_history 140626).

We must remember that Thihathu was the youngest of Three Shan Brothers (actually half-Burmese and half-Shan). He became highly Burmanized and considered himself a heir to the Kingdom of Pagan. See:
¤ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thihathu 140626
¤ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mi_Saw_U 140626

So we must assume that Mallinātha Sūri would be known to the Burmese scholars from the time of Sagaing & Pinya, and also of Innwa.

From Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mallinatha_Suri 120520

Mallinātha Sūri was an eminent critic, known for his commentaries on five mahakavyas (great compositions) of Sanskrit. During his times, he is said to have received the titles of Mahamahopadyaya and Vyakhyana Cakravarti. He lived during the reigns of Racakonda king Singabhupala and Vijayanagara king Deva Raya I. Based on the evidence from the inscriptions, it is estimated that he lived between 1350-1450 CE.

Mallinātha's surname was Kolachala, Kolachela, Kolichala or Kolichelama. The village Kolichelama (currently known as Kolchāram) is near Kowdipally, a small village in the Medak District of Andhra Pradesh. When Kākatīya rule ended, the scholars of Kolachelama family migrated to Rāchakonḍa, the capital of Singabhūpāla. From the colophons of Sanjīvani, it is known that Singabhūpāla honoured Mallinātha with the title of Mahāmahopādyāya, and Mallinātha's son with the title of Mahopādyāya.

UKT: More in the Wikipedia article.

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From Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P%C4%81%E1%B9%87ini - 110711

Pāṇini ( {pa-Ni.ni.} पाणिनि, a patronymic meaning "descendant of Paṇi") was an Ancient Indian Sanskrit grammarian from Pushkalavati, Gandhara (fl. 4th century BC [1] [2]).

He is known for his Sanskrit grammar [UKT from hyperlink: Vyakarana ], particularly for his formulation of the 3,959 rules [2] of Sanskrit morphology, syntax and semantics in the grammar known as Ashtadhyayi (अष्टाध्यायी Aṣṭādhyāyī, meaning "eight chapters"), the foundational text of the grammatical branch of the Vedanga, the auxiliary scholarly disciplines of Vedic religion.

UKT 130716: It is interesting that Wikipedia has used the term "Vedic religion". The number of hymns in the Rig Veda has been counted and it is found the highest number goes to Indra, Agni, and Soma. Much less is sung for (the present-day Hindu) Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva, probably showing that they were later additions. Because of this I have conjectured that the Vedic religion was not originally of Sanskrit speakers, but of original non-Sanskrit speakers of India -- the Tibeto-Burmans. The following is from Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rigvedic_deities 130716

List of Rigvedic deities by number of dedicated hymns, after Griffith (1888). Some dedications are to paired deities, such as Indra-Agni, Mitra-Varuna, Soma-Rudra, here counted doubly.

Indra, 289 • Agni, 218 • Soma, 123 (most of them in the Soma Mandala)

• Vishvadevas, 70 • the Asvins, 56 • Varuna, 46 • the Maruts, 38
• Mitra, 28 • Ushas, 21 • Vayu (Wind), 12 • Savitr , 11 • the Rbhus, 11
• Pushan, 10

• the Apris, 9 • Brhaspati, 8 • Surya (Sun)
• Dyaus and Prithivi (Heaven and Earth), 6, plus 5.84 dedicated to Earth alone
• Apas (Waters) 6 • Adityas, 6 • Vishnu, 6 • Brahmanaspati, 6
Rudra 5 (Early form of Shiva)
• Dadhikras, 4 • the Sarasvati River /  Sarasvati 3
• Yama (N.A.) • Parjanya (Rain), 3
• Vāc (Speech) 2 (mentioned 130 times, deified e.g. in 10.125)
• Vastospati, 2 • Manyu,  2
• Kapinjala (the Heathcock, a form of Indra) 2

The Ashtadhyayi is one of the earliest known grammars of Sanskrit, although he refers to previous texts like the Unadisutra, Dhatupatha, and Ganapatha. [2] It is the earliest known work on descriptive linguistics, and together with the work of his immediate predecessors (Nirukta, Nighantu, Pratishakyas) stands at the beginning of the history of linguistics itself. His theory of morphological analysis was more advanced than any equivalent Western theory before the mid 20th century, and his analysis of noun compounds still forms the basis of modern linguistic theories of compounding, which have borrowed Sanskrit terms such as bahuvrihi and dvandva.

Pāṇini's comprehensive and scientific theory of grammar is conventionally taken to mark the end of the period of Vedic Sanskrit , by definition introducing Classical Sanskrit.

UKT 130715: I am forming a theory that Vedic aka "Vedic Sanskrit" was one of the Tib-Bur (Tibeto-Burman) languages used by the peoples just south of the Himalayas, which was beginning to be used by the IE (Indo-European) speakers like Panini {pa-Ni.ni.}.

I am forming this theory based on the supposed presence of ऌ & ॡ (vocalic short L & long L vowels) sounds in Vedic similar to the {la.}-sounds in modern Bur-Myan (Burmese speech in Myanmar script) such as {la.}, {lya.}, {lwa.}, {lha.}, {lhya.}, {lhwa.}. However, in the Classical Sanskrit, we find a high presence of rhotic sounds such as ऋ & ॠ (vocalic short R & long R vowels) which are absent in Bur-Myan.

Since, Pal-Myan (Pali-Myanmar) is very similar (in consonant and vowel sounds) to Bur-Myan, I am of the opinion that it was the direct descendant of Vedic which had come into the land of Myanmar before the time of Gautama Buddha. It was recorded in Glass Palace Chronicle (in Bur-Myan), that a group from India led by King Abiraza had sought refuge in northern Burma (Myanmar) long before the time of the Buddha. If a king had come in, he must have been accompanied by his monks (who were not Buddhists) and scribes. They would have brought along their language, the Vedic, into the land of Myanmar.

Then in the 11th century AD. came King Anawrahta who uprooted the non-Theravada elements and their monks (probably because of political reasons) and changed the nature of Pal-Myan by introducing elements of Sanskrit which came in with the Mon-Myan language from the south. Please note that I am a scientist, and I admit my theory is nothing but a conjecture unsupported by any other evidence. I wait for comments from my peers. - UKT110711.

UKT: More in the Wikipedia article.

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Petersburg dictionaries
- Otto von Böhtlingk (1815 – 1904)

From Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Otto_von_Bohtlingk 120520

Otto von Böhtlingk (May 30, 1815 – April 1, 1904) was a German Indologist and Sanskrit scholar. His magnum opus was a Sanskrit dictionary.

He was born in Saint Petersburg, Russia. Having studied (1833-1835) Oriental languages, particularly Arabic, Persian and Sanskrit, at the University of Saint Petersburg, he continued his studies in Germany, first in Berlin and then (1839-1842) in Bonn.

Returning to Saint Petersburg in 1842, he was attached to the Royal Academy of Sciences, and was elected an ordinary member of that society in 1855. In 1860 he was made Russian state councillor, and later privy councillor with a title of nobility. In 1868 he settled at Jena, and in 1885 moved to Leipzig, where he resided until his death.

Böhtlingk was one of the most distinguished scholars of the nineteenth century, and his works are of pre-eminent value in the field of Indian and comparative philology. His first great work was an edition of the Sanskrit grammar of Panini, Aṣṭādhyāyī, with a German commentary, under the title Acht Bücher grammatischer Regeln (Bonn, 1839-1840). This was in reality a criticism of Franz Bopp's philological methods.

UKT: More in Wikipedia article.

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Vedic language and religion

-- UKT 130716, 140702

Before I set out on Sanskrit as a language after watching a TV program in Canada on the epic Mahabharata War, and after going through this epic on Internet sources, I did not know anything about Panini - the Sanskrit linguist (erroneously dubbed grammarian).

Then I came to know of the difference in pre-Panini language which was known as Vedic-Sanskrit, and the post-Panini language which is called the Classical Sanskrit. I became fascinated with the story of Mahabharata War, a war between the Pandavas and Kaurivas -- legal cousins.

As Buddhists, we are familiar with a character by the name {wi.Du-ra.} -- a minister who became a pawn in the game of dice between the Pandavas and Kaurivas. There were probably two {wi.Du-ra.} -- the one in the Buddhist Birth stories, and the other in Mahabharata.

UKT 130717: From the Gautama Buddha's Birth stories, we are told that there were other Buddhas before. These enlightened humans were those who had gained the ultimate wisdom -- they were not Devas nor Gods. And, they do not belong to the present-day Buddhism. These buddhas are not Buddhists. My childhood's fascination with the mark on the image  head has now turned to pineal gland -- the supposed seat of mystic knowledge. See Wikipedia: -- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pineal_gland 130717

Whatever the case may be my interest has lead me to: 
Online Sanskrit Dictionary , February 12, 2003 . Download pdf - dictall.pdf (link chk 140702)
Glossary of Sanskrit terms - Gloss.htm (link chk 140702)
• SpkSkt - Hypertext Spoken Sanskrit English Dictionary (with Devanagari script) -
- http://www.spokensanskrit.de/ 101106, 130716 

I will begin my note with the Vedic or Vedic-Sanskrit as different from Classical Sanskrit of Panini. The following is based on the Substratum in the Vedic-Sanskrit , keeping in mind that I do not consider Vedic to be an IE (Indo-European) language, and therefore I will use the word Vedic instead of Vedic-Sanskrit.

From Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Substratum_in_Vedic_Sanskrit 130717

Vedic has a number of linguistic features which are alien to most other IE languages. [UKT ¶ : it is one of my basic reasons for claiming that Vedic is not IE.]

Prominent examples include: phonologically, the introduction of retroflexes, which alternate with dentals [UKT ¶] .

UKT 130716: To make my arguments more clear, I will use two scripts: Asoka script [don't call it Brahmi - it confuses the discussion] -- the oldest script found on the Indian sub-continent, and Myanmar -- probably the unique script in the world based on circularly rounded-circles. Here I must emphasize that the perfect circle is considered to represent Perfection - it must be free from any blemish, such as dents, dots, and openings.

If the Asoka script was the oldest script found on the Indian subcontinent, and is supposed to be the parent of all other languages or scripts, it might be well to study the shape of {ka.} क «ka».


Myanmar akshara is used for writing many indigenous languages in Myanmarpré, because of which we can say it is the strongest cultural bond between the ethnic groups. Though the basic shape of the glyphs remain the same, some changes are met when used for different speeches.

Myanmar akshara is also a "hidden esoteric" script, used for writing magico-religious runes, which are feared and revered by many people in Myanmarpré -- including the so-called Western-educated moderns.

An example of a rune is the {sa.Da.ba.wa. ing;} aka {sa.ma.lé:loän: ing:} inside a 2x2 square matrix. Instead of the square matrix it can be a right-handed Swastika. The aksharas have to be written one by one reciting a specific mantra {mûn~tûn} with the stylus in continuous touch the substrate or medium on which it is written. The whole process must be done by the rune-master with a fully concentrated mind, which he has acquired after a period of a day, a week, or 49 weeks of concentration-practice {þa.ma.hta.} while abstaining eating meat, drinking alcohol, or having sex. 

For dictionary meaning of see MLC MED2006-024. I interpret as one of the 40 methods of yogic practices. See:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buddhist_meditation 140702
   "In the Theravāda tradition alone, there are over fifty methods for developing mindfulness and forty for developing concentration ..."

The substrate may be paper, silver foil, or gold foil for benefic {ing:}, or potsherd (usually from a broken monk's alms-bowl - a consecrated item), or even a piece of human skull for writing malefic {ing:}. They are not graffiti in any sense nor play-things. Moreover they are not meant to be understood by the uninitiated.

The {sa.Da.ba.wa. ing;} rune tells the steps that have to be taken by a human-being to achieve Perfection. Starting from upper left-hand square with a circle dented on the left. It represents your emotions: greed, anger, sexual desires, and pride. You are imperfect in the beginning. With the right kind of practice -- not necessarily Buddhistic -- you advance to the next square on the right. You are still not perfect -- you are still rooted in your love for sex and sensual desires. The circle is dented in the bottom. Proceed and get to the next square. Still you are not perfect -- wrong ideas in your head: the circle is still dented on top. Practice and now you can move to the next square -- now you are perfect.

The pix on the right is not a graffiti nor artist's imagination. It is a rune called "Thigyamin Sa Ma", It is a powerful rune to impart the power of Hindu Indra or Buddhist Sakka to the rune master. See:
¤ Folk Elements in Buddhism -- flk-ele-indx.htm (link chk 140701)
leading to ¤ Cult of Magus - ch05-magus.htm (link chk 140701_)

I maintain that such runes are ideographs -- they are not sentences in a language. It is probable that the Indus-valley seals are ideographs which you will not be able to understand.

Above, the Myanmar akshara is in the form used for writing Mon-Myan speech. For comparing, Asokan to Myanmar, we will concentrate on the tenuis-voiceless and ordinary-voiceless of the {wag}-consonants -- consonants which can be classified phonologically according to the POA (Place of Articulation - as rows) in the human mouth: (exterior) labial, dental, retroflex, palatal, velar (interior). The columns give the manner of articulation: tenuis-voiceless, voiceless, voiced, deep-H, nasal. The aksharas must be represented in a matrix -- a representation that precedes the International Phonetic Alphabet by thousands of years.

• velar:  r1c1, r1c2 
   compare Asoka + {ka.}, Swastika, Rune, and Myanmar {ka.}

• palatal:  r2c1, r2c2 
   a striking feature is the single-circle & double-circle

• retroflex: r3c1, r3c2 
   perfect circle (perfection) of Asoka, and open circles on pedestals (respect) of Myanmar

• dental: r4c1, r4c2 
   compare r3c2 (perfection} & r4c2 (blemish) 

• labial: r5c1, r5c2
   the loop on the right-hand side of the glyph is common

The approximants, rows #6 & #7, {la.} & {ha.} because of the angular motions as in the Swastika shows {la.} to be left-handed, and {ha.} to be right-handed. It gives a clue as to their POAs (positions of articulation) in making sounds. In fact {la.} is pronounced in the outermost part of the mouth, whilst {ha.} is pronounced far back in the mouth. Here contrastive rotation indicates highly contrastive sounds.

Just as we were made to write out the perfect circle, we as children were told to pronounce each akshara as clearly and as distinctly as possible. Emphasis is put on the POA and the manner of articulation. Each akshara, because it is representing a syllable is considered alive, and in order to make it mute, a killer -- a viram aka {a.þût} -- must be applied to it. As young children, we were told that each akshara is a god {Bu.ra:} in itself and we were made to kowtow a book written in aksharas if we happened to step on it.

The instrument of 'killing' the consonant is known as the virama in Sanskrit and {a.þût} in Burmese.

[Prominent examples also include: ] morphologically, the formation of gerunds; and syntactically, the use of a quotative marker ("iti"). [1] Such features, as well as the presence of non-Indo-European vocabulary, are attributed to a local substratum of languages encountered by Indo-Aryan peoples in Central Asia and within the Indian subcontinent.

UKT 130717: Bur-Myan - a Tibeto-Burman language -- is totally uninflected. See: Burmese Grammar and Grammatical Analysis by A. W. Lonsdale, Education Department, Burma, British Burma Press, Rangoon, 1899. In Preface, Lonsdale writes -- ch00.htm (link chk 150714)

The Burmese language is constructed on scientific principles, and there is no reason why its grammar should not be dealt with also from a scientific standpoint. But it may be safely said that Burmese grammar as a science has not received that attention it deserves.

• With regard to the grammatical treatises by native writers, it is no exaggeration to say that there is not one which can be properly called a Burmese grammar. These writers, not content with merely borrowing the grammatical nomenclature of the Pali language, also attempted to assimilate the grammatical principles of the uninflected Burmese to those of the inflected Pali; so that they produced, not Burmese grammars, but modified Pali grammars in Burmese dress. The servile veneration in which they held Pali, the language they had adopted as the classic, is, no doubt, directly responsible for the composition of such works. In their endeavour to conform strictly to Pali methods, they often introduced unnecessary terms and misapplied them, ignoring those grammatical points in Burmese for which they could find no parallel in Pali. How futile their attempts were may be judged by the numerous difficulties and anomalies they created, from some of which even now teachers of the language have not quite extricated themselves - take, for instance, the case-inflexions.

A substantial body of loanwords has been identified in the earliest Indian texts. Non-Indo-Aryan elements (such as -s- following -u- in Rigvedic busa) are clearly in evidence. While some loanwords are from Dravidian, and other forms are traceable to Munda [2] or Proto- Burushaski, the bulk have no sensible basis in any of these families, suggesting source in one or more lost languages. [UKT ¶]

UKT 130717: What is Burushasski language? Sounds Russian - but is not. It is a language with three dialects named after the main valleys: Hunza, Nagar, and Yasin (also called Werchikwār). Yasin dialect is the most divergent and is the least affected by contact with neighboring languages. All three dialects are mutually intelligible.
-- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burushaski 130717

Geographically, the area lies in the extreme north-west of the present-day Pakistan. The name of valley of Hunza which sounds very Bur-Myan is intriguing. We have a town in northern Myanmarpré with the same name. Of course, the name of another valley Nagar also sounds Bur-Myan. The names Yasin and the Bur-Myan town of {ra.mæÑ:þing:} are also intruding. Could they be the furthest-reaches of Tibeto-Burman languages?

Western linguists, and their followers in Myanmarpré, should stop their study using the bias of inflexions. Burmese, a language free from inflexions has been studied by from the point of view of inflexions with disastrous results. The above Wikipedia article has an interesting footnote on phoneme /j/ :
" This phoneme has various pronunciations, all of which are rare sounds cross-linguistically. Descriptions include: "a voiced retroflex sibilant with simultaneous dorso-palatal narrowing" (apparently [ʐʲ] ) (Berger 1998); "a fricative r, pronounced with the tongue in the retroflex ('cerebral') position" (apparently [ɻ̝]/[ʐ̞], a sound which also occurs in Standard Chinese, written r in Pinyin) (Morgenstierne 1945); and "a curious sound whose phonetic realizations vary from a retroflex, spirantized glide to a retroflex velarized spirant" (Anderson forthcoming). In any case, it does not occur in the Yasin dialect, and in Hunza and Nager it does not occur at the beginning of words. "

The discovery that some loan words from one of these lost sources had also been preserved in the earliest Iranian texts, and also in Tocharian convinced Michael Witzel and Alexander Lubotsky that the source lay in Central Asia and could be associated with the Bactria–Margiana Archaeological Complex (BMAC). [3] [UKT ¶]

UKT 130717: The area designated above as BMAC, -- the area of bronze-age civilization ca. 2300–1700 BCE located in present-day Afghanistan, eastern Turkmenistan, southern Uzbekistan and western Tajikstan centered on the upper Amu Darya (Oxus River) -- should be compared to our Pyu bronze-age civilization. See Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bactria–Margiana_Archaeological_Complex 130717.

The area of ancient Pyus in northern Myanmarpré was the source of copper and zinc ores used for making brass an alloy of copper and zinc. Remember, the ancient art of handing of molten metals to be cast into huge objects such as the world's biggest functioning bell, the Mingun Bell is indigenous. See Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mingun_Bell 130717

Another lost language is that of the Indus Valley Civilization, which Witzel initially labelled Para-Munda, but later the Kubhā-Vipāś substrate. [4]

UKT: More in the Wikipedia article.

UKT 030717: If you look for Vedic religion on the Internet, you will be given only what the Hindu Brahmana-poannas {brah~ma.Na. poaN~Na:}, having been claiming as theirs. If you go by my assertion that Vedic language was not IE and was quite different from Classical Sanskrit of Panini, you will have to look into the pre-Buddhistic and pre-Hinduistic religions of the Tib-Bur (Tibeto-Burman) speakers who had lived along the southern foothills of Himalayas extending from the present-day Afghanistan in the west, to Myanmarpré in the east, a possible candidate is the ancient Bon {baung:} religion of Tibet (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bon 130717). Compare it to the cult of {waiz~za} practiced under the umbrella of Theravada Buddhism in present-day Myanmarpré. A branch of the {waiz~za} cult is the cult of Runes. Also look into the cult of Nat {nût} which may be comparable to the worship of Me'nes in pre-Christian Rome. See Folk Elements of Buddhism, by Dr. Htin Aung, and my work on it. -- flk-ele-indx.htm .

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