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Arrangement of the Rules in Panini's Astadhyayi

Arrangement of the Rules in Panini's Astadhyayi
Item Code: IDH555
Author: K.R. Tripathi
Publisher: Parimal Publication Pvt. Ltd.
Language: English
Edition: 2016
ISBN: 8171101046
Pages: 232
Cover: Hardcover
Other Details: 8.8" X 5.7"
weight of the book is 370 gm

From the Jacket

The first part of the present work deals with general problems of rule ordering in the Astadhyayi known to Dr. Tripathi from Various sources. The main part of the work, however, is devoted to a study of the organization of the Taddhita section of the Astadhyayi, which formed the subject of the PhD thesis of Dr. Tripathi for the University of Poona in 1980. Here Dr. Tripathi convincingly shows that the taddhita section has been arranged along two different lines, namely, according to suffixes and according to meaning condition. This has been illustrated in great detail. There fore whoever wants to study the Astadhyayi in general and the taddhita section in particular will find the work done by Dr. Tripathi a valuable contribution to Paninian studies.

About the Author

He was born in 1951, lecturer in the dept. of Sanskrit College, Balrampur is a versatile Sanskrit scholar. He got his post graduate degree from Gorakhpur University in 1974 securing first division and got the award of PhD in 1981 from Poona University. He attended many seminars and conferences with his research papers on various topics of Sanskrit grammar and poetry. He also wrote a Sanskrit Khandakavya Tarangadutam. Fifteen years experience for teaching of Post graduate classes a number of Research scholar have been awarded PhD degree under his supervision.



During the years 1977-1980 Dr. K.R. Tripathi was working in the Centre of Advanced Study in Sanskrit, University of Poona, as a Teacher-fellow. During this period Dr. Tripathi had the opportunity to meet several scholars in the field of Sanskrit studies during the Seminars organized by the 'CASS. I mention especially the Seminar on Indian theories of Sentence-meaning held in 1979, and the Seminar on Aspects of Vedic Interpretations held in 1980. As a result of his study D. Tripathi acquired the skills necessary for the interpretation of panini.

The first part of the present work deals with general problems of rule ordering in the Astadhyayi known to Dr. Tripathi from various sources. The main part of the work, however, is devoted to a study of the organization of the taddhita-section of the Astadhyayi, which formed the subject of the Ph. D. thesis of Dr. Tripathi for the University of Poona in 1980. Here Dr. Tripathi convincingly shows that the taddhita-section has been arranged along two different lines, namely, according to suffixes (the pratyayadhikara) and according to meaning-conditions (the arthddhikara, This has been illustrated in great detail. Therefore whoever wants to study the Astadhyayi in general and the taddhita-section in particular will find the work done by Dr. Tripathi a valuable contribution to Paninian studies.

I hope that Dr. Tripathi will continue this work in the future, and I wish him every success.


This book represents a slightly revised version of my studies as a Teacher Fellow at the Centre of Advanced Study in Sanskrit, University of Poona. I started working for the present thesis in August 1977. Fortunately the 29th session of AIOC was held in June 78 in Poona so that I could come in direct contact of some eminent scholars of Paninian system 'of gram- mar. In 1979 March, a seminar was organized at the CASS, Poona University which was attanded by the scholars of great Eminence like Gaurinath Sastri. R.C. Pandeya, C.K. Raja. It was conveined by Prof. S.D. Joshi, the Director of CASS Poona University. This seminar proved very vital and energetic for my studies. In December 1979, I was invited to attend the Lexico-workshop-cum seminar organized by Central Institute of Hindi Agra (10-22 December 79) where I could learn much by the demonstrations and lectures of Hardev Bahri, B.C. Balak, risnana. Prof. Vidya Niwas Misra and D.P. Patanayaka.

The Centre of Advanced study in Sanskrit, Poona University used to organize special lectures of the eminent scholars like G. Cardona, Paul Kiparsky etc. The scholars of CASS used to present brilliant research papers every week, which all inculcated a deep sense of research in my mind.

During my study for the present thesis, I could get chance to learn German language and also linguistics in Ranade Institute Poona and Deccan College Post Graduate and Research Institute, Poona respectively. The academic atmosphere which I found in Poona compels me to say that Poona University can stand with any reputed university of the western world.

It is my solemnduty to express my gratitude and also acknowledge with thanks, all sorts of helps received from persons and institutions for the completion of the present work; though, I fully realise the inadequacy of words might speak my sentiments and respects for them. I express- my deep sense of gratitude to Prof. M.D. Pandit who has been kind enough to guide me with much interest besides his busy schedules. I am grateful to Prof. S.D. Joshi who really initiated me in the Paninian system of grammar, specified the topic for the present thesis, gave valuable suggestions and lastly did the great favour by going through the major part of the final draft of the thesis. I must thank the U.G.C. and the University of Poona both, for a warding me the Teacher Fellowship. My thanks are also due to the authorities of M.L.K.P.G. College (my employer) who gracefully granted me academic leave for the whole period of my Fellowship. I am grateful to Prof. G.B. Palasule, Prof. S.D. Laddu and Prof. S. Bhate who enlightened me time and again. Or. Satyakama Verma (Delhi) and Dr. Rama Sankara Bhattacharya (Varanasi) gave solution of some problems through discussions and Prof. M.A. Mehendale (Deccan College-Poona) pointed out some knots in Paninian grammar, they all deserve my special thanks. Pt. K.A. Sivarama krisna Sastri (Deccan College, Poona) and Prof. Asoka R. Kelakara (Deccan College, Poona) enlightened me in solving some knoty problems. My deep sense of regard is due to them. Dr. R.P. Gosvami, Librarian CASS Poona University deserves special thanks who used to help very promptly in searching. relevant literature and references even from Jayakar Library, Library of Deccan College Post Graduate and Research Institute and the BORI Library of Poona. The administrative staff including menial staff, of the department of Sanskrit and the CASS, deserves my thanks for helps in several ways. I must also thank the authorities of Deccan College for providing me a good residense at the campus and all the library facilities which helped me in completing my research in due time. Lastly I want to thank my wife Nirmala Tiwari for her help in preparing the final draft of the thesis.

I am also thankful to my, fellow Teacher Fellows particularly Dr. G.R. Pandeya (also my teacher). Or. R. J, Deoskar, Dr. Thaneswar Sarmah, Dr. S.P. Srivatsa, Dr. D. Kar and P.C. Das whose company itself was a help in my research persuits.

I am deeply indebted to Mr. N.P. Joshi and Dr. Arjundas Batra and their family who gave parental and brotherly affection throughout my stay in Poona. Dr. H.C. Patyal and Dr. P. Gidavani thought me linguistics in Deccan College, they deserve special sense of respect;

I now again record my deep sense of gratitude to Prof. S.D. Joshi, who has added to the value of the thesis by writing a learned foreword.

I am deeply obliged to Mr K.L. Joshi of Parimal Publications, Delhi who have brought this edition in an attractive form.


The grammatical tradition antedates Panini, but Panini's, grammar which refers to several of its lost predecessors, is the- oldest extant, and continues to be the most important and complete Sanskrit grammar. It consists of eight Chapters or adhysyas and is therefore, generally called the Astadhyayi. Indeed, the more one studies the Astadhyayi the more one realises the depth and correctness of the characterisations given by Speyer of this work as, ein wohl durchdachtes and night; nur kunstliches, sondern auch kunstvolles Lehrbuch', (a well planned i.e. thought out and not merely artificial but artistic text book); Faddegon, 1936, p. 36. Panini's Astadhyayi has most appropriately been recognised as, 'a monumental work of human intelligence', (Bloomfield), 'It stands and it will always stand as long as Sanskrit continues to be studied, as a monument at once of encyclopedic research and technical perfection', (Belvalkar). The Astadhyayi is also interesting in the sense that it is probably the oldest surviving specimen or that type of literary activity which found expression in the aphoristic style. 'The date of Panini is one of the major problems of Indic chronology. Among the scholars who have- discussed this problem are Th. Goldstucker, S.K. Belvalkar, Bruno Liebich etc. The majority of scholars agrees on Panini having flourished in 500 B.C. Nonetheless the scholars like- Belvalkar hold .that, 'there is nothing in Panini's Astadhyayi that is inconsistent with his having flourished in- the 7th Century B.C. ‘Although Panini's work has a history behind it, it is the achievement of one man. Panini's guiding principles of- completeness, relevance, and brevity, and his methods of carrying out these principles were the product of generations or- scholarship. His one great fault, the extreme complication of- the mechanism which determines the scope and order in which the rules are to be applied-this flaw, to whose mending lifetimes of labor have been devoted without final success—has at least the value of proving that the treatise is a unit, that Panini (defined as the creator of this ingenius unity) was a man who really lived. His wording has been admirably pre- served, doubtless because the text is a sacred one. Its nature is 'such that any additions by later hands will appear as foreign 'bodies. To recognise them is important not only because Panini's grammar is one of the greatest monuments of man's intelligence, and not only because of the value of an accurate -description of an •early Indo-Buropean 'Colloquial language, but also because 'the great literature 'which uses classical Sanskrit as its medium was written by men who learned this language from what 'ever version and interpretation of Panini's "text was current in their time and place'. (Bloomfield, 1929 Language V. reprint, 1964).

'Panini, according to Paul Theme (and also several others) -is so brief as to be often obscure and not seldom illogical, he is so subtle as to be ambiguous and not seldom incomprehensible. Today a scholar who wants to freely handle and master his injunctions must possess a stupendous memory and 'a "tremendous amount of learning in the vast literature discussing the implicit suggestions, silent assumptions and principles underlying his formulation or supposed to underlie them' (P. "Theme : Indian culture, Vol. IV 1938. p. 202).

Panini's text of grammar is highly technical, rather one may add that it betrays the perfection of a technical composition - a science of language. Panini has been and will continue -to be a peninial source of research in the field of the science of language in general and the Sanskrit language in particular, The Astadhyayi has been attracting the serious attention of scholars of ancient time as well as the scholars of the .recent past centuries even up to date. Truly speaking, in the 'Present century Paninian grammar has engaged as eizable 'number of serious linguists and grammarians both native -and from abroad.

'The first great ancillary work to Panini's grammar is the Mahabhasya of Patanjali. In this treatise Patanjali discusses the supplementary aphorisms (varttikas) of his predecessor Katyayana, which correct, supplement, eliminate as unnecessary, or justify the rules of Panini; Patanjali gives critique of Katyayana's varttikas deciding for or against each one, and adds varttikas of his own. Already in this treatise much effort goes toward determining the real intent of Panini's rules, since then many a life-work has gone into the task of elucidation. The chief later commentary is the kasika of Vamana Jayaditya, A great step forward was the thorough indexing of Panini, a task performed by Otto Bohtlingk’.

The natural idea of rearranging Panini's rules and supplying the dettoed words was carried out by Bhattoji Diksita in his Siddhanta Kaumudi. But in fact, the attempt was foredoomed to failure. The Siddhtinta Kaumudi, a splendid and brilliant piece of work, is as hard to deal with as Panini. It has given rise to a large ancillary literature of its own.'

Franz Kielhorn, the foremost European student of Sanskrit grammar, gave a greatly abridged summary of the Paninian doctrine in his grammar of the Sanskrit language. The non- Paninian systems of Sanskrit grammar, such as Candra's are in reality little else than rearrangements and simplifications of Panini's doctrine. (Bloomfield, 1929-1 %4).

Panini's treatment is intelligible only with a commentary; even with the many commentaries we possess-and they contain a vast amount of intelligent and even brilliant scholarship- several lifetimes of work will have to be spent upon Panini before we have conveniently usable exposition of the language which he recorded for all time (Bloomfield, 1929-64, "p. 270).

The source of the difficulty of Panini's grammar is his brevity. One meance by which Panini attained the condensation (describing the entire usage in nearly four thousand rules only) is altogather commendable and, indeed, of great scientific importance, and is due to the thorough working-up of the data. Whenever two or more forms have any feature in common, that feature is stated once and once only for all of them. If the common feature is present in an indefinite number of forms or in all forms showing a certain characteristic, then a general statement sufices: the forms are regular; if the common feature is present in only a limited number of forms-and is not a function of any definable characteristic, then the forms are irregular and are listed by citation in the rules or as a group in the Ganapatha. (Bloomfield, 1929).

Although the basic arrangement of Panini's treatise was relevant to the subject matter he subordinated this logical order to a requirement of conciseness : every rule is so placed that as many as possible of its words can be replaced by ditto-marks because they repeat words of preceding rule. For this purpose so many rules are torn from their natural place that the basic structure of the grammar is to a large extent obscure. Worst of all, the ditto-marks anuvrtti) and their ceasation (Nivrtti) at the end of a series of rules are not actually written in the treatise as we have it. (Bloomfield, ibid).

The arrangement of various topics in the framework of the Astadhyayi, treatment of different grammatical categories such- as general Samjnas (technical feature of his description), compounds, karaka relations, derivation of nominal forms from verbal roots, derivation of secondary word-forms (taddhitas), feminine word forms etc. etc., have been studied by several scholars. They have also criticised occationally the arrangement of the entire matter by Panini. Scholars like Fowler (JAOS, 85, 1965) have gone to an extent of talking of testing the Paninian sutras by automation-the computer so as to evaluate the exactitude of order and the wording i.e. the structure of the Sutras. In connection with the treatment of subject matters and the arrangement of rules in the Astadhyayi, some scholars have said that Panini is wandering- in a maze and the key is always missing from his hand. Wackerngel saw in Panini's grammar, the whole a whirlpool' of caprice'. (Faddegon, 1936. p. 68).

  Foreword v
  Preface vii
  Abbreviation x
  Introduction 1-10
I 1.1 Some General Principles of Arrangement of Rules in the Astadhyayi 11-18
  1.2 A general Arrangement of the Astadhyayi 19-30
II 2.1 Arrangement of Rules vis-à-vis Anuvrtti 31-51
  2.2 Arrangement of Rules vis-à-vis Adhikara 52-65
III Semantic Aspect of the Arrangement of Taddhita Sutras 66-78
IV The General Affix An>A 79-113
V A Structural Analysis of some Taddhita Sutras 114-213
  Resume 214-218
  Bibliography 219-232
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