Kalanirnaya: A Text on Ancient Indian Phonetics With Dipika (Commentary) of Muktisvaracarya

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Item Code: NAK366
Author: Suranjana Chaudhury
Publisher: The Asiatic Society
Language: Transliteration and English Translation
Edition: 2015
ISBN: 9789381574232
Pages: 186
Cover: Hardcover
Other Details 8.5 inch X 5.5 inch
Weight 310 gm
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Book Description

About The Book

The Kalanirnaya is a Siksa text written around the 16th-17th century. This present work Kalanirnaya with the Dipika (commentary) of Muktisvaracarya is prose from of the mid-17th century or a little earlier.

Kalanirnayadipika deals with only mora of Sanskrit. It emphasizes on the difference in the utterance of vowels, consonants and also in pause. It highlights the scientific basic of the structure of the Sanskrit language.

Kalanirnaya text and Dipika (commentary) both are critically edited here. The handy Introduction may be help to get a brief idea about Sanskrit Phonetics. Translation of the text has also been provided. It would be a great help for further study to those scholars who are interested in the field of Siksa.


About The Author

Suranjana Chaudhury was born at Kolkata. She did her graduation with honours in Linguistics from the Sanskrit College, Kolkata; did post-graduation also in Linguistics from the University of Calcutta. She got her B.Ed. degree from the University of Calcutta. She did Diploma on Manuscriptology and B.L.I.S. degree from the University of Madras. She worked as a Project Assistant in Tamil Etymological Dictionary Project Assistant of NCC (New Catalogues Catalogorum) Project of Sanskrit Department in University of Madras. She obtained diploma in Hindi conducted by the Directorate of Education under the Ministry of HRD, Govt. of India.

She has been working in the Publication Section of the Asiatic Society, Kolkata, since 2007.



Sm. Suranjana Chaudhury has done a unique job by critically editing the ancient Indian text on Phonetics entitled Kalal along with its Dlpika (commentary) composed by Muktisvaracarya of 16th-17th Century CE. The work deals with Siksa, a class of scientific literature which was used to be composed for reciting the Vedic Mantras with correct pronunciation, accentuation etc. Before presenting the main text of the Kalanirnaya with the Dipika (commentary) Sm. Chaudhury has discussed almost all the aspects of Siksa and its allied branches. The main text, its commentary and the introductory part are as a whole a valuable production for scholars interested in Sanskrit Linguistics. Professor Satya Ranjan Banerjee's Prolegomena is a very informative addition to the edited text. It is a very great task for any genuine scholar of oriental learning to present to the academic circle any informative as well as useful unpublished Sanskrit text with its critical edition. Sm. Chaudhury deserves appreciation for her noble attempt to bring to light the edited text of the Kalanirnaua.



This is an attempt to present a critical edition of the Sanskrit work Kala71inJaya with the commentary or Dipika of Muktisvaracarya. The Kalanirnaya is a Siksa text was written in the sixteenth-seventeenth centuries. It deals with the matras or prosodial time measure of letters, accents and pauses. This is a work on the (Vedic) Phonetics.

While I was looking for a manuscript for editing as partial fulfilment of the requirements for the diploma in Manuscriptology in the University of Madras, I came across Kalanirnayaa with Dipika of Muktisvaracarya. This text is a phonetic study of the Veda. As a student of Linguistics, its subject matter helped me to go through it with deep interest.

Kalanirnauadipika is in a prose form. It is a very brief commentary. The book deals with only one point, i.e., on the mora of Sanskrit. The text and the commentary dealt here lay emphasis on the difference in the utterance of vowels and consonants in Sanskrit. Moreover, it emphasises on the aspect of pronunciation of syllables.

The kala is of three components. They are the syllables (letters) that are not split, the parts of the syllables and the time gap for the utterance of the letters.

As the vowels and consonants have different types of utterance, they cannot be treated as letters of similar length to be pronounced.

My deep sense of gratitude is due for the Sree Sarada Educational Research Centre, Chennai, and Government Oriental Manuscripts Library, Chennai, for giving me a copy of the manuscript of the work Kalanirnaya which forms the basis of my critical edition.

It is a great pleasure to put on record my debt and gratitude to Dr. Siniruddha Dash, former Professor and Head, Department of Sanskrit, University of Madras, and former Editor-in-Chief, New Catalogus Catalogorum (NCC) for initiating me into this field of academic study and for the guidance to prepare this critical edition. I owe my indebtedness to Dr. Mamata Mishra, former Associate Editor of New Catalogus Catalogorum, who had helped me throughout the process. Her scholarship and insight had been a source of inspiration to study the manuscripts carefully.

My gratitude is offered to my friends Dr. R. Narayanan, Ms. Subhashini, R. and Ms. R. Prabha and other colleagues and friends of NCC Project of Sanskrit Department, University of Madras.

My special thanks to Mr. Nirbed Ray, Publication Officer, The Asiatic Society, Kolkata, without whose cooperation it would not have been possible to publish this book timely. I am also grateful to Dr. Ramkrishna Chatterjee, former Publication Secretary, Professor Manabendu Banerjee, General Secretary, Dr. Nrisingha Prasad Bhaduri, Publication Secretary and to all my colleagues of the Publication Department, The Asiatic Society, Kolkata.

I acknowledge with deep respect and gratitude for the help and inspiration received from my revered teacher Dr. Satya Ranjan Banerjee, formerly Professor, Department of Linguistics, University of Calcutta.

Lastly, I must mention the encouragement I derived from my father Mr. Krishna Dhar and my mother Late Kalpana Dhar for the accomplishment of the work. In fine, I should mention the help from my son Aniket Chaudhury for urging and encouraging me constantly for the completion of my work.




  Foreword xi
  Preface xiii
  Prolegomena xv
  Abbreviations xxix
  Glossary and terms xxxi
  Introduction 1
  Kalanirnayasiksa 5
  Kalanirnayadipika 8
  Date of the work 8
  The Sanskrit alphabet (varna-samamnaya) 9
  A Survey of the Siksa and the Patisakhya 9
  The Pratisakhya 9
  Chronology of the Pratisakhyas: 16
  The Siksa 24
  Chronology of the Siksas: 30
1 The General Siksa or the Paniniya Siksa 32
2 The Siksas of the Rgveda 32
3 The Siksas of theWhite (sukla) Yajurveda 34
4 The Siksas of the Black (krsna) Yajurveda 45
5 The Siksas of the Samveda 76
6 The Siksa of the Atharvaveda 80
  The phonetic observation 81
1 Syllable and their rules : syllabication of sound groups 82
2 Syllabication of the yamas 88
3 Syllabication of the anusvara 91
4 Syllabication of svarabhakti 94
5 Doubling 96
6 Abhinidhana (incomplete Articulation) 113
  Critical Apparatus 121
  The text of the Kalanirnaya with Dipika 123
  Transliteration and English translation of the text 137
  Observations 143
  Contents analysis of the text 145
  Bibliography and References 147
  Index 149

Sample Pages

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