A report on Sanskrit and Devanagari

Rigveda (padapatha) manuscript in Devanagari, early 19th century. The red horizontal and vertical lines mark low and high pitch changes for chanting.
Uṣṇīṣa Vijaya Dhāraṇī Sūtra in Siddham on palm-leaf in 609 CE. Hōryū-ji, Japan. The last line is a complete Sanskrit syllabary in Siddhaṃ script.
A 17th-century birch bark manuscript of Pāṇini's grammar treatise from Kashmir
Vowel diacritics on क
An early use of the word for "Sanskrit" in Late Brahmi script (also called Gupta script): Gupta ashoka sam.jpgGupta ashoka skrr.jpgGupta ashoka t.svg Saṃ-skṛ-ta 
Mandsaur stone inscription of Yashodharman-Vishnuvardhana, 532 CE.
The Jnanesvari is a commentary on the Bhagavad Gita, dated to 1290 CE. It is in written in Marathi using Devanagari script.
Sanskrit's link to the Prakrit languages and other Indo-European languages
A few palm leaves from the Buddhist Sanskrit text Shisyalekha composed in the 5th century by Candragomin. Shisyalekha was written in Devanagari script by a Nepalese scribe in 1084 CE (above). The manuscript is in the Cambridge University library.
The Spitzer Manuscript is dated to about the 2nd century CE (above: folio 383 fragment). Discovered in the Kizil Caves, near the northern branch of the Central Asian Silk Route in northwest China, it is the oldest Sanskrit philosophical manuscript known so far.
A mid 10th-century college land grant in Devanagari inscription (Sanskrit) discovered on a buried, damaged stone in north Karnataka. Parts of the inscription are in Canarese script.
A 5th-century Sanskrit inscription discovered in Java, Indonesia—one of the earliest in southeast Asia after the Mulavarman inscription discovered in Kutai, eastern Borneo. The Ciaruteun inscription combines two writing scripts and compares the king to the Hindu god Vishnu. It provides a terminus ad quem to the presence of Hinduism in the Indonesian islands. The oldest southeast Asian Sanskrit inscription—called the Vo Canh inscription—so far discovered is near Nha Trang, Vietnam, and it is dated to the late 2nd century to early 3rd century CE.
Indic scripts share common features, and along with Devanagari, all major Indic scripts have been historically used to preserve Vedic and post-Vedic Sanskrit texts.
Sanskrit language's historical presence has been attested in many countries. The evidence includes manuscript pages and inscriptions discovered in South Asia, Southeast Asia and Central Asia. These have been dated between 300 and 1800 CE.
Devanagari INSCRIPT bilingual keyboard layout
One of the oldest surviving Sanskrit manuscript pages in Gupta script (c. 828 CE), discovered in Nepal
Devanagari Phonetic Keyboard Layout
One of the oldest Hindu Sanskrit inscriptions, the broken pieces of this early-1st-century BCE Hathibada Brahmi Inscription were discovered in Rajasthan. It is a dedication to deities Vāsudeva-Samkarshana (Krishna-Balarama) and mentions a stone temple.
in the form of a terracotta plaque
Sanskrit in modern Indian and other Brahmi scripts: May Śiva bless those who take delight in the language of the gods. (Kālidāsa)
One of the earliest known Sanskrit inscriptions in Tamil Grantha script at a rock-cut Hindu Trimurti temple (Mandakapattu, c. 615 CE)
The ancient Yūpa inscription (one of the earliest and oldest Sanskrit texts written in ancient Indonesia) dating back to the 4th century CE written by Brahmins under the rule of King Mulavarman of the Kutai Martadipura Kingdom located in eastern Borneo
Sanskrit festival at Pramati Hillview Academy, Mysore, India

Among the languages using it – as either their only script or one of their scripts – are Marathi, Pāḷi, Sanskrit (the ancient Nagari script for Sanskrit had two additional consonantal characters), Hindi, Boro, Nepali, Sherpa, Prakrit, Apabhramsha, Awadhi, Bhojpuri, Braj Bhasha, Chhattisgarhi, Haryanvi, Magahi, Nagpuri, Rajasthani, Bhili, Dogri, Kashmiri, Konkani, Sindhi, Nepal Bhasa, Mundari, and Santali.

- Devanagari

Sanskrit does not have an attested native script: from around the turn of the 1st-millennium CE, it has been written in various Brahmic scripts, and in the modern era most commonly in Devanagari.

- Sanskrit
Rigveda (padapatha) manuscript in Devanagari, early 19th century. The red horizontal and vertical lines mark low and high pitch changes for chanting.

10 related topics with Alpha


Applet for character selection

International Alphabet of Sanskrit Transliteration

4 links

Applet for character selection

The International Alphabet of Sanskrit Transliteration (IAST) is a transliteration scheme that allows the lossless romanisation of Indic scripts as employed by Sanskrit and related Indic languages.

The IAST letters are listed with their Devanagari equivalents and phonetic values in IPA, valid for Sanskrit, Hindi and other modern languages that use Devanagari script, but some phonological changes have occurred:

A northern example of Brahmi epigraphy: ancient terracotta sculpture from Sugh "Child learning Brahmi", showing the first letters of the Brahmi alphabet, 2nd century BCE.

Brahmi script

3 links

Writing system of ancient South Asia that appeared as a fully developed script in the third century BCE.

Writing system of ancient South Asia that appeared as a fully developed script in the third century BCE.

A northern example of Brahmi epigraphy: ancient terracotta sculpture from Sugh "Child learning Brahmi", showing the first letters of the Brahmi alphabet, 2nd century BCE.
A later (mistaken) theory of a pictographic-acrophonic origin of the Brahmi script, on the model of the Egyptian hieroglyphic script, by Alexander Cunningham in 1877.
Coin of Agathocles with Hindu deities, in Greek and Brahmi.
Obverse: Balarama-Samkarshana with Greek legend: ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ ΑΓΑΘΟΚΛΕΟΥΣ.
Reverse: Vasudeva-Krishna with Brahmi legend:𑀭𑀸𑀚𑀦𑁂 𑀅𑀕𑀣𑀼𑀓𑁆𑀮𑀬𑁂𑀲 Rājane Agathukleyesa "King Agathocles". Circa 180 BCE.
A 2nd-century BCE Tamil Brahmi inscription from Arittapatti, Madurai India. The southern state of Tamil Nadu has emerged as a major source of Brahmi inscriptions dated between 3rd to 1st centuries BCE.
A proposed connection between the Brahmi and Indus scripts, made in the 19th century by Alexander Cunningham.
The word Lipī used by Ashoka to describe his "Edicts". Brahmi script (Li= La+ i; pī= Pa+ ii). The word would be of Old Persian origin ("Dipi").
Connections between Phoenician (4th column) and Brahmi (5th column). Note that 6th-to-4th-century BCE Aramaic (not shown) is in many cases intermediate in form between the two.
The Prakrit word "Dha-ṃ-ma" (Dharma) in the Brahmi script, as inscribed by Ashoka in his Edicts. Topra Kalan pillar, now in New Delhi (3rd century BCE).
Calligraphical evolution: 3rd century BCE calligraphy (top), and a sample of the new calligraphic style introduced by the Indo-Scythians (bottom, fragment of the Mirzapur stele inscription, in the vicinity of Mathura, circa 15 CE). The text is Svāmisya Mahakṣatrapasya Śudasasya "Of the Lord and Great Satrap Śudāsa"
Classification of Brahmi characters by James Prinsep in March 1834. The structure of Brahmi (consonantal characters with vocalic "inflections") was properly identified, but the individual values of characters remained undetermined, except for four of the vocalic inflections. Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal Volume 3 (March 1834).
Norwegian scholar Christian Lassen used the bilingual Greek-Brahmi coinage of Indo-Greek king Agathocles to correctly achieve in 1836 the first secure decipherement of several letters of the Brahmi script, which was later completed by James Prinsep.
Consonants of the Brahmi script, and evolution down to modern Devanagari, according to James Prinsep, as published in the Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal, in March 1838. All the letters are correctly deciphered, except for two missing on the right: 𑀰(ś) and 𑀱(ṣ). Vowels and compounds [[:File:Brahmi script vowels according to James Prinsep March 1838.jpg|here]]. All scripts derived from Brahmi are gathered under the term "Brahmic scripts".
The word Brā-hmī in modern Brahmi font
Brahmi consonants.
Some major conjunct consonants in the Brahmi script.
Early Brahmi vowel diacritics.
The Brahmi symbol for /ka/, modified to represent different vowels
A 1st century BCE/CE inscription from Sanchi: "Vedisakehi daṃtakārehi rupakaṃmaṃ kataṃ" (, "Ivory workers from Vidisha have done the carving").
Middle Brahmi vowel diacritics
1800 years separate these two inscriptions: Brahmi script of the 3rd century BCE (Edict of Ashoka), and its derivative, 16th century CE Devanagari script (1524 CE), on the Delhi-Topra pillar.
Kya (vertical assembly of consonants "Ka" Brahmi k.svg and "Ya" Brahmi y.svg), as in "Sa-kya-mu-nī " ( 𑀲𑀓𑁆𑀬𑀫𑀼𑀦𑀻, "Sage of the Shakyas")
Sva (Sa+Va)
Sya (Sa+Ya)
Hmī (Ha+Ma+i+i), as in the word "Brāhmī" (𑀩𑁆𑀭𑀸𑀳𑁆𑀫𑀻).
Early/Middle Brahmi legend on the coinage of Chastana: RAJNO MAHAKSHATRAPASA GHSAMOTIKAPUTRASA CHASHTANASA "Of the Rajah, the Great Satrap, son of Ghsamotika, Chashtana". 1st–2nd century CE.<ref>{{cite book |title=Seaby's Coin and Medal Bulletin: July 1980 |date=1980 |publisher=Seaby Publications Ltd. |page=219 |url=https://archive.org/details/seabyscoinmedalb1980base_r0l5/page/218}}</ref>
Inscribed Kushan statue of Western Satraps King Chastana, with inscription "Shastana" in Middle Brahmi script of the Kushan period (Gupta ashoka ss.svg{{sub|Gupta ashoka sta.jpg}}Gupta ashoka n.svg Ṣa-sta-na).<ref name="JBO">"The three letters give us a complete name, which I read as Ṣastana (vide facsimile and cast). Dr. Vogel read it as Mastana but that is incorrect for Ma was always written with a circular or triangular knob below with two slanting lines joining the knob" in {{cite book |title=Journal of the Bihar and Orissa Research Society |date=1920 |publisher=The Society |url=https://books.google.com/books?id=yKZEAQAAMAAJ |language=en}}</ref>
The rulers of the Western Satraps were called Mahākhatapa ("Great Satrap") in their Brahmi script inscriptions, as here in a dedicatory inscription by Prime Minister Ayama in the name of his ruler Nahapana, Manmodi Caves, circa 100 CE.<ref>{{cite book|last1=Burgess|first1=Jas|title=Archaeological Survey Of Western India|date=1883|page=103|url=https://archive.org/stream/in.ernet.dli.2015.35775}}</ref>
Nasik Cave inscription No.10. of Nahapana, Cave No.10.
Gupta script on stone Kanheri Caves, one of the earliest descendants of Brahmi
The Gopika Cave Inscription of Anantavarman, in the Sanskrit language and using the Gupta script. Barabar Caves, Bihar, or 6th century CE.
Coin of Alchon Huns ruler Mihirakula. Obv: Bust of king, with legend in Gupta script (Gupta_allahabad_j.svg)Gupta_allahabad_y.svgGupta_allahabad_tu.jpg{{sup|Gupta_allahabad_mi.jpg}}{{sup|Gupta ashoka hi.jpg}}Gupta_allahabad_r.svgGupta_allahabad_ku.jpgGupta_allahabad_l.svg,<ref>The "h" (Gupta ashoka h.svg) is an early variant of the Gupta script</ref> (Ja)yatu Mihirakula ("Let there be victory to Mihirakula").<ref>{{cite book |last1=Verma |first1=Thakur Prasad |title=The Imperial Maukharis: History of Imperial Maukharis of Kanauj and Harshavardhana |date=2018 |publisher=Notion Press |isbn=9781643248813 |page=264 |url=https://books.google.com/books?id=09FqDwAAQBAJ&pg=PT264 |language=hi}}</ref><ref>{{cite book |last1=Sircar |first1=D. C. |title=Studies in Indian Coins |date=2008 |publisher=Motilal Banarsidass |isbn=9788120829732 |page=376 |url=https://books.google.com/books?id=m1JYwP5tVQUC&pg=PA376 |language=en}}</ref><ref>{{cite book |last1=Tandon |first1=Pankaj | pages=24–34|title=Notes on the Evolution of Alchon Coins Journal of the Oriental Numismatic Society, No. 216, Summer 2013 |date=2013 |publisher= Oriental Numismatic Society |url=http://coinindia.com/galleries-alchon-early.html}} also Coinindia Alchon Coins (for an exact description of this coin type)</ref>
Sanchi inscription of Chandragupta II.

The underlying system of numeration, however, was older, as the earliest attested orally transmitted example dates to the middle of the 3rd century CE in a Sanskrit prose adaptation of a lost Greek work on astrology.

Wilkins seems to have relied essentially on the similarities with later Brahmic scripts, such as the script of the Pala period and early forms of Devanagari.

Burmese Kammavaca manuscript written in Pali in the 'Burmese' script.


2 links

Middle Indo-Aryan liturgical language native to the Indian subcontinent.

Middle Indo-Aryan liturgical language native to the Indian subcontinent.

Burmese Kammavaca manuscript written in Pali in the 'Burmese' script.
19th century Burmese Kammavācā (confession for Buddhist monks), written in Pali on gilded palm leaf

Pāḷi, as a Middle Indo-Aryan language, is different from Classical Sanskrit more with regard to its dialectal base than the time of its origin.

Other local scripts, most prominently Khmer, Burmese, and in modern times Thai (since 1893), Devanāgarī and Mon script (Mon State, Burma) have been used to record Pali.


1 links

Distribution of L1 speakers of the Hindi family of languages (as defined by the Government of India; includes Rajasthani, Western Pahari, Eastern Hindi, among others) in India.

Hindi (Devanagari: हिन्दी, हिंदी, ISO: Hindī), or more precisely Modern Standard Hindi (Devanagari: मानक हिन्दी, ISO: Mānak Hindī), is an Indo-Aryan language spoken chiefly in the Hindi Belt region encompassing parts of northern, central, eastern, and western India.

Hindi has been described as a standardised and Sanskritised register of the Hindustani language, which itself is based primarily on the Khariboli dialect of Delhi and neighbouring areas of North India.

A Sanskrit Phrase in different Brahmic Scripts.

Brahmic scripts

1 links

The Brahmic scripts, also known as Indic scripts, are a family of abugida writing systems.

The Brahmic scripts, also known as Indic scripts, are a family of abugida writing systems.

A Sanskrit Phrase in different Brahmic Scripts.
A map of Indo-Aryan languages using their respective Brahmic family scripts (except dark blue colored Khowar, Pashai, Kohistani, and Urdu, not marked here, which use Arabic-derived scripts).
A map of Dravidian languages using their respective Brahmic family scripts (except Brahui, which uses an Arabic-derived script).
A fragment of Ashoka's 6th pillar edict, in Brahmi, the ancestor of all Brahmic scripts
Spread of Brahmic family of scripts (and Kharosthi) from India

Each consonant has an inherent vowel which is usually a short ‘ə’ (in Bengali, Assamese and Odia, the phoneme is /ɔ/ due to sound shifts). Other vowels are written by adding to the character. A mark, known in Sanskrit as a virama/halanta, can be used to indicate the absence of an inherent vowel.


Marathi language

1 links

Indo-Aryan language predominantly spoken by Marathi people in the Indian state of Maharashtra.

Indo-Aryan language predominantly spoken by Marathi people in the Indian state of Maharashtra.

981 A.D. Marathi inscription at the foot of Bahubali statue at Jain temple in Shravanabelagola is the earliest known Marathi inscription found. It was derived from Prakrit language.
Marathi inscription inside Brihadisvara temple complex, Thanjavur
The popular Marathi language newspapers at a newsstand in Mumbai, 2006
Marathi language speakers in India (Census 2011)
Rajya Marathi Vikas Sanstha is the main regulator of Marathi
Modi script was used to write Marathi
An effort to conserve the "Modi Script" under India Post's My Stamp scheme. Here, the word 'Marathi' is printed in the "Modi Script".
Marathi neon signboard at Maharashtra Police headquarters in Mumbai.
Map of Marathi language in India (district-wise). Darker shades imply a greater percentage of native speakers of Marathi in each district.

A committee appointed by the Maharashtra State Government to get the Classical status for Marathi has claimed that Marathi existed at least 2,300 years ago alongside Sanskrit as a sister language.

Carey's dictionary had fewer entries and Marathi words were in Devanagari.


1 links

The Harvard-Kyoto Convention is a system for transliterating Sanskrit and other languages that use the Devanāgarī script into ASCII.


1 links

The "Indian languages TRANSliteration" (ITRANS) is an ASCII transliteration scheme for Indic scripts, particularly for the Devanagari script.

Since ITRANS was primarily designed for Sanskrit (and other modern Indo-Aryan languages), it lacks full-coverage for Indic scripts of other languages.

A Nandinagari manuscript


0 links

Brahmic script derived from the Nāgarī script which appeared in the 7th century AD. This script and its variants were used in the central Deccan region and south India, and an abundance of Sanskrit manuscripts in Nandinagari have been discovered but remain untransliterated.

Brahmic script derived from the Nāgarī script which appeared in the 7th century AD. This script and its variants were used in the central Deccan region and south India, and an abundance of Sanskrit manuscripts in Nandinagari have been discovered but remain untransliterated.

A Nandinagari manuscript
A 16th century CE Sanskrit record of Sadasiva Raya in Nandinagari script engraved on copper plates. Manuscripts and records in Nandinagari were created and preserved historically by creating inscriptions on metal plates, specially treated palm leaves, slabs of stone and paper.
A chart showing Nandinagari script

It is a sister script to Devanāgarī, which is common in other parts of India.

Nandi Nagari script was used to spell the Sanskrit language, and many Sanskrit copper plate inscriptions of the Vijayanagar Empire were written in that script.


0 links

Landlocked country in South Asia.

Landlocked country in South Asia.

A topographic map of Nepal
Mount Everest, the highest peak on earth, lies on the Nepal–China border.
Köppen climate classification for Nepal
This land cover map of Nepal using Landsat 30 m (2010) data shows forest cover as the dominant type of land cover in Nepal.
The greater one-horned rhinoceros roams the sub-tropical grasslands of the Terai plains.
The Himalayan monal (Danphe), the national bird of Nepal, nests high in the Himalayas.
B.P. Koirala led the 1951 revolution, became the first democratically elected Prime Minister, and after being deposed and imprisoned in 1961, spent the rest of his life fighting for democracy.
Nepal has made progress with regard to minority rights in recent years.
Traffic Police personnel manually direct traffic at the busiest roads and junctions.
Gurkha Memorial, London
Nepal is one of the major contributors to UN peacekeeping missions.
The multipurpose Kukri knife (top) is the signature weapon of the Nepali armed forces, and is used by the Gurkhas, Nepal Army, Police and even security guards.
A proportional representation of Nepal exports, 2019
Real GPD per capita development of Nepal
Tourists view a greater one-horned rhinoceros from an elephant in Chitwan National Park.
While adults are employed in slavery-like conditions abroad, hundreds of thousands of children in the country are employed as child labour (not including the agricultural sector).
Middle Marsyangdi Hydroelectric Dam. Nepal has significant potential to generate hydropower, which it plans to export across South Asia.
Sadhus in Pashupatinath Temple
Historical development of life expectancy in Nepal
A Magar couple in their ethnic dress
Bhanubhakta Acharya, Nepali writer who translated the ancient Hindu epic Ramayana in the Nepali language
A Nepali man in Daura-Suruwal, coat and Dhaka topi, displays the bhoto during the Bhoto Jatra festival.
A dal-bhat thali with boiled rice, lentil soup, fried leafy greens, vegetable curry, yoghurt, papad and vegetable salad
Momo dumplings with chutney
Samayabaji (Newar cuisine)
Nepali children playing a variant of knucklebones, with pebbles
Nepali cricket fans are renowned for an exceptionally enthusiastic support of their national team.
"Nēpāla" in the late Brahmi script, in the Allahabad Pillar inscription of Samudragupta (350-375 CE).

Indologist Sylvain Levi found Lassen's theory untenable but had no theories of his own, only suggesting that either Newara is a vulgarism of sanskritic Nepala, or Nepala is Sanskritisation of the local ethnic; his view has found some support though it does not answer the question of etymology.

Descendent of Sanskrit, Nepali is written in Devanagari script.