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A Comparative Grammar of Tibeto-Himalayan Languages

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Item Code: BAE588
Author: D.D. Sharma
Publisher: Mittal Publications, New Delhi
Language: English
Edition: 1994
ISBN: 8170995159
Pages: 299
Other Details 8.50 X 5.50 inch
Weight 450 gm
Book Description
About the Book

This volume is the first one on the grammatical studies of the languages of the Himalayan group. Moreover, it occupies a unique position in the history of Indian linguistics, because no scholar, Indian or foreigner, has undertaken, seriously, an exhaustive and comprehensive comparative study of all the phonological and morphological features of all the speeches belonging to Himalayan regions of India, Nepal and Bhutan. As such the present work containing a complete comparative analysis of 15 languages of Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand may claim to be the pioneer attempt and fulfill the requirement of linguistic studies in this sub-continent and also to fill the vacuum of grammatical studies in the 4 major linguistic families.

The author, after many years' Intensive and extensive exploration of the speeches from the Inaccessible Himalayan regions, has, in a comprehensive manner brought to light all the converging and diverging features, not only of the languages belonging to Tibetan and Himalayan families, but also has taken into account many phonological and morphological features of Indo-Aryan, Austro-Asiatic (Munda) and Dravidian families of languages, attesting close affinity with these features of the Himalayan languages.

Thus the present work, as that of Mr. Beam's and of Rev. Caldwell's has a prominent place not only in the domain of Comparative linguistics, but in the domain of historical and descriptive linguistics as well. As such it is surely to be cherished by all Interested, not only in comparative, contrastive, descriptive and historical aspects of the Himalayan languages, but also of the languages spoken at the length and breadth of the Indian Sub-Continent.

About the Author

Professor Dr. D. D. Sharma (b. 1928), a renowned scholar of Sanskrit and Linguistics, served Punjab University. Chandigarh for nearly 28 years. He obtained Ph.D. in Sanskrit from the Benaras Hindu University in 1958 and later on Ph.D. and D.Um. in Unguistics from the Panjab University, Chandigarh besides the highest Oriental title, viz. Sahityacharya (Varanas) and Diploma in French, German and Persian.

Professor Sharma is well acquainted with nearly two dozen Indian and foreign languages and has to his credit 20 research Volumes and scores of research papers on the subjects of language, culture and literature published in research journals of national and International repute.

In Linguistics he has made substantial contribution In the fields of descriptive, historical, comparative, contrastive, linguistics, sociolinguistics and semantics. It was in recognition of his contribution to Unguistics that he was awarded the prestigious Jawaharlal Nehru Fellowship (1984-86) to undertake the linguistic survey of the Himalayan languages from Ladakh to Bhutan.

In the field of Sanskrit language and literature too his contribution is equally substantial. His research work on Kalidasa bagged him an award from the Sanskrit Academi, Uttar Pradesh. On his retirement from the Panjab University In May 1989 he was awarded Emeritus Fellowship by the U.G.C. for the completion of his 12 volume research project, Studies in Tibeto-Himalayan Languages of which 5 volumes have already appeared. Currently, he is actively engaged in the completion of the remaining volumes of the above mentioned project.


The stupendous task of preparing a grammar of 7 Indo-Aryan languages was taken up by J. Beams towards the second half of the last century and the first edition of it appeared in 1872- 79 under the title "Comparative Grammar of the Modem Indo-Aryan Languages of India" which covered the major seven L.A. speeches of this sub-continent. After this an equally challenging task of preparing a comparative grammar of 6 major and minor Dravidian languages of south India was undertaken by Rev. Robert Caldwell, the first edition of which appeared in 1913. But ever since no scholar Indian or foreigner, came forward to undertake comparative studies of the uncovered linguistic families of this sub-continent. There, although the speeches of the Munda families were fortunate enough to draw attention of some scholars toward their individual and comparative studies, but the host of the speeches of the Tibeto-Himalayan group have remained totally unattended. A few sporadic attempts may have been made here and there, but a comprehensive and comparative analysis of all these tongues which are spoken right from Gilgit in the west to the north-eastern frontiers in Arunachal Pradesh in the east, has remained a distant dream. In fact, linguistic studies in these inhospitable and inaccessible Himalayan regions is not an easy task, not only because of the geophysical problems of these regions, but also of their baffling linguistic scenarios, termed as "formless ever moving hords of ants" by Grierson. Moreover, as compared with the preparation of comparative grammars of the Indo- Aryan and Dravidian languages, the task of these speeches is much more challenging and problematic. For, there the authors had to handle only a limited number of speeches and were fortunate enough to have some literary and analytical material at their disposal to work on it Besides, the linguistic regions too were not inaccessible to them.

**Contents and Sample Pages**

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