Rigveda (padapatha) manuscript in Devanagari, early 19th century. The red horizontal and vertical lines mark low and high pitch changes for chanting.
A 17th-century birch bark manuscript of Pāṇini's grammar treatise from Kashmir
A 17th-century birch bark manuscript of Pāṇini's grammar treatise from Kashmir
A representational statue of Pāṇini at Panini Tapobhumi, Arghakhanchi District of Nepal
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.
Sanskrit's link to the Prakrit languages and other Indo-European languages
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 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.
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.
One of the oldest surviving Sanskrit manuscript pages in Gupta script (c. 828 CE), discovered in Nepal
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

Pāṇini (Devanagari: पाणिनि, ) was a Sanskrit philologist, grammarian, and revered scholar in ancient India, variously dated between the 6th and 4th century BCE.

- Pāṇini

Sanskrit can also more narrowly refer to Classical Sanskrit, a refined and standardized grammatical form that emerged in the mid-1st millennium BCE and was codified in the most comprehensive of ancient grammars, the Aṣṭādhyāyī ('Eight chapters') of Pāṇini.

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

3 related topics

Alpha

The syllable Aum rendered with pluta

Vedic Sanskrit

Ancient language of the Indo-Aryan subgroup of the Indo-European language family.

Ancient language of the Indo-Aryan subgroup of the Indo-European language family.

The syllable Aum rendered with pluta

The formalization of the late form of Vedic Sanskrit language into the Classical Sanskrit form is credited to Pāṇini's Aṣṭādhyāyī, along with Patanjali's Mahabhasya and Katyayana's commentary that preceded Patanjali's work.

Frits Staal

The department founder and Emeritus Professor of Philosophy and South/Southeast Asian Studies at the University of California, Berkeley.

The department founder and Emeritus Professor of Philosophy and South/Southeast Asian Studies at the University of California, Berkeley.

He continued with Indian philosophy and Sanskrit at Madras and Banaras.

Staal argued that the ancient Indian grammarians, especially Pāṇini, had completely mastered methods of linguistic theory not rediscovered again until the 1950s and the applications of modern mathematical logic to linguistics by Noam Chomsky.

Palm-leaf page from a version of Aṣṭādhyāyī in Grantha script.

Aṣṭādhyāyī

Palm-leaf page from a version of Aṣṭādhyāyī in Grantha script.

The Aṣṭādhyāyī is a grammar that describes a form of early Indo-Aryan: Sanskrit.

Authored by Sanskrit philologist and scholar Pāṇini and dated to around 500 BCE, it describes the language as current in his time, specifically the dialect and register of an élite of model speakers, referred to by Pāṇini himself as śiṣṭa.