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BAGCHI 1934, A note on the Language of the Buddhist Dohās

BAGCHI 1934, A note on the Language of the Buddhist Dohās

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Published by: Marco Passavanti on Sep 07, 2012
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A note on the Language of the

Buddhist Dohci's
The late Dr. H. P. Sastr; was collecticn are written of Buddhist them with was mysti~-;ongs his notes. Hnd publish the The hrst to discover from Nepal a (Caryapadas) language as "Old and Dohas ad in which Bengali." Dr. to edit texts S. K.



by him

5=hatterji went deeper

into the philological


and after

" careful study came to the conclusion that the Caryapadas only are written in what can be called "Old l3engali';~~-d-th;;15;;hii~''':cc;rdi~g-t~ him

.'.'p,:" sent


salTIe dialect

which is a kind

ofW~ster~(S":uras;ni) its -ijj~- passives


as. i!s .-U'- nominati~-;;~~it;-=-~h~~·g~;;it;~es. agreement (The Origin and Development

<:nd its general amply indicate" I, p. 112).

in form withth~-lit~;":;Y~\Ve~t~·;;.;



the Bengali

This dialect


'to him played

the same, role, as the

Brajabhakha did in later times, in relation to the eastern languages. He however admitted that though it is a 'Western dialect some Od l3engali idioms and words have crept into it. Dr. Shahidullah, however, in his admirable tried to establish that the language (Les Chanis Mystiques de Kiinha conclusion preservation QlclBengali 'palatal, because edition of the Dohas,

of the Dohas i3 an Eastern Apabhra!psa et Saraha, p. 55). He was led to this of the language he noticed the

in the 'phonology

of the palatal sa whjch i3 the. rTlost_i!'~':k'::d. characteristic of as well as of the 0<;1h6 dialects. In Sarvananda's commen(dated and

tary on Amaralto~a are found

1159 A.D.) the two sibilants, both dental and
confusion is aba corrupt due discovered in

their occasional of the Pales.

some of the inscriptions The text published number

by H. P. Sastr! was very

and the large

e.f mistakes

in it, it seem:> to me, were

to the fault of the

copyists. As the manuscript on which he baoed his edition is now lost Dr. Shahidull~h while .eediting the text had to depen'd only 0;" the Tibetan translation for making his emendations. These emendations are very valuable During palm-leaf discovered in making out the sense of the Dohus but do not heJp us of the exact fOrIlls of the words. in 1929 I came of Saraha. hitherto upon two incomplete mS. I The ms. Sarma other was of In the same unknown. Hemaraja and the

much in the determination manuscripts

my last stay in Nepal

of the Dohiiho~a

tw~ more incomplete, Dohiilto~cs N. S. 220 i.e.


is dated, contained

1100 A.D.

The Rajguru one of Saraha

also kind;~ou~h

t~ place at my disposal a ms. of his own collection. which



two co!"pl<;te Dohiilto~as,

k. bisayasattibisayasatti. bina. 46.pabesa. Therefore it will be wrong to suppose that -anti was characteristic eastern inflexion for the 3rd person plural present indicative. l .ereas Hindi~.illJy 4. 37.:-!<. paissai.h~d-by--j.ritten in Jaina ApabhraJTlsa of the 11th century A. dirpti. sunahu (57).i-." It is however in the ~O!E. -en in mode. pabesa "9. t~__ __ s1'. Ill.u/isa . though I haVe Saraha Fragment 11. tara.!!l. The forms in -anti. sojjha. bisahi. ~ In all other cases in these texts the inflexion is -ahi and in some cases -ahi which may be a mistake for the fOlmer. bisa~ (Sastri's text. baisi (2.bisaa.s of it in· the different Dohak."'t1.. hara. bisamai) .rd~.«1 _ Siistri and reedit~d by Dr.r-pe.. Marathi . of the text published by H. .'ca-.. (37). sai (5iistri's text . and sijjhai (24). Bojjhu (53. humti (31).!lti (7).~--did the n~t--. bisaya) .t~-.barisante. in the text as published by H.' (18). In all other case. ase.!i'1. animisa (Sastri's text animisa) • animisa. sissa.i~_!he_A~bhraIJlsa of these Buddhist f)ohiis the use of the sibilant was reg~larly -~~-~fi~ed .!.. duriase~a (Siistri's text . th~rpti (78).labesi (86. sarisa (50.dose. Saraha. siriphala (2) sunna (8).the pr~.o-.arirpti (32).. B8). Shahidullah). disai. suaa (95). sal/attva (77). I<ahirpti (31).l<a (100).-b~~ or-verbs h~v~=. sialahasettha . and Tillopii . P.-.0Mk ~ There are five example. sudda (48).ai (17J. 103 whe.94. sarira (91). though a Ji. binasai (55). 73. P. pdssai.D.~!_. Shahidullah to be another eastern feature.onf~. paisai. 88). pec.D. 96. piyarpti (80)..duriiisesa) _ duriasesa. According to him a-.han~l:e former belcngs to the 12th century A.sU1)1)a. 29.. Dr.'. sattha). sohia (40). 27."tii~ Old Bengali . ul Bloch is quite clear on this point in his Preface to the book of Or Sh~hidullah.0~a8 Saraha . 78. In the following list I will first men.~ howe~er-. k.Shahi.a 'rati -e iQld Gujrati -a] would all go back to -ahl. Shahidullah found the palatal sibilant preserved. sisa (4). 4).<>f copYists. .t1'l this -::~I. 7. horpii (4). Fragment J.' 76. 86. 92.. sunai (75). 65.re it is bisaa).ararpti (23). jhagac. pasu (23). vasarpti (35). 86).. ' In a number eases ill the Dohak.. bhumayanti (2)..i (61).d~ttasit'. (in 58.r of verbs with -aJTltiinflexion for the 3rd person plural indicative present: I. 10 bese) . with reference tCIthe stanzas of Saraha's Dohak. saSl _ sasi. 6.!. 68). -arpti. bisuddho _ bisuddha.dose) . biBarisa (86.ararpti (22).~~ily~~ist. pac. Shahidullah of has discovered a more accentuated Easlernf-~~. 70.holoID:'..sat/ha. havarpti (31). sunna. bisama (27).he dental.. 88). sombara (89). The inflexion asi for the 2nd person.al1d Oriya.. It therefore follows that there is nothing in the phonology of the dialect of the Dohas which would justify us in taking it to be an Easter~ Apabhramsa if we understand by it 'some dialect from wh~hBe-. The three works ~f Jin~. desahi _ desahi. The Dohal<o~a of Sarl!ha as contained in this ms. tion.o~e of Saraha Or.t~. dhararpti (21). parimuceanti (44). eplai.pti (7).son plural Of the present indicative.. jarpt. The confusionthat appears in th.~c'. paisi.'. disa. k. pasa (87). dosa. k. hunti (7). According to him it may be called an Eastern ApabpiaJTlsa "si I'on ent<. sos a (ID.bha. bisohahu.:th~older manuscripts. hurpii (19. desa desa. hese sialaha.p 11. aise.Bengali a~athiJ. dosa (5iistri's text.sail . sal<ai (54). 51. 72). Tillopiida . pdrisahu (57).arirpti (61). pasa (23).ndpar la qu'i1 se rencontre dans des textes orientaux et qu' en y decele des influences orientales. II.. In these texts there is clearly one sibilant and .larpti (31).isa. havarpii (80). bisariau (Sastri's text. saltk. Sastri betw~~nthe dental and palatal sibilants should be attributed to the !Jegligen~~_.. hurpti (78). suna (16. k. Prof. darisana. 31J. saranta (66). the words as established by him and then their correct forms as found in the newly discovered mss. 99.nct easter~ character of the language. laharpti (7). These are sufficieTlt. 72. 66. This ms. sunaha _ sunaha. 30. bisarisa (86.lGnii (4).'oi.ulisa. Kal}hu . ~~-.ure~ --7\ n~.. are some regular uses of the dental s in~tead of the palatal . Rajasthani -ai.. ubaese.~ti-i~flexion in the 3r.d. hurpti lim. 101).sai..bese.lamti.ot so "si I'on veut y voir la base des langues orientales actuelles. -anip in Middle Afsamese'. 68.~~~at. published in the Gaekwad's Oriental Series ccntain a fairly good numbe.tl Maithili are aE ~d-fr..bii.viphtl'fanti (43).!h~!LiIL!!!1ifQ. bisahi.bisaraiau. dosa) . dose (Siistri's text . 93)..o~a (the text a9 publish~d by Or. k." but it is r.::rp.dosa. the dialect that Dr. sohai (85).. singular indicative present has AA appeared to f)r.~~~clboth the inflexions ahi and ·anti in the ApabhraIl1sa which he describe>3. suk.2S0 A:'\OT£ o:\'rHi~LAXGL\GE OF THE nL"DDH1ST DOHM.. yea. siri (56. ubeSa .k. sosa (14). in the Dohiis as well as in the Jaina ApabhraJTlsa may be explamed as l-'rakritisms remaining side by side with regular ApabhraJTlsa forms in -ah·. ·3. (but in 5.rn. 1\ Tillopiida. k. Shahidullah takes it lo be a disti. bhunasai.drirpti (27).ubesa.i-. ullah. bisuddha (72).~~-ch· -. . 5astri it is always the dental s which is used instead of s and ~ _ saa/asesa (61). is thus a second "nd probably older ms. suddha (l08). (but see 69.-g~li descended. lirpti (213). bahaJTlti (2).

inflexion .••. . Dohils.·· But modern Bengali and cognate languages presuppose in Eastern Apabhrall\sa not only forms like ca/asi but also caii. \ 1 r n.ot appear to be any characteristic ft:ature of the Eastern ApabhraIJlh .laputthihi (3 Besides the locative singular in -hi i3 !.. We ~re therefore stilI JustIfied m mamtammg that the language of the Buddhist Dohlis was a .. and locative singular forms in -hi do n.calahi (Chiltterji. Western ApabhraIJlsa which was adopted for the composition of these \ Ea3tern texts sometime between the 9th and 11th centuries AD.and do not prove in any way the. . 935).. Shahidullah. The regular locative singular inflexion in \Vest~rn Apabhrall\sa for words in -a was according to \ I:' Hemacandra -e lind -iBut in the ApabhraIJlsa works of Jinadattasiiri we fin&a number ot examples in -hi: If. find any example of it in the Dohiis.of view.ahii and Nemif nathacarita Dr.ains to be discussed. I . k. Apllbhrawsa al~o possessed both the inflexion. Shahidullah is inclined to the opinion that it is a distinct've li. and middle AS3amese and Eastern Hindi -as .uppahi (13). Dr.been able t~·. eastern character of the language '~f th. Panjabi.i and . The contention of Dr..' . k. Therefore the second person indicative present forms in =." ~eature"of the Eastern Apabhrall\sa. ' l. both from phonological and ~or.not yet . Anot~e~ point rem.. It is the locative singull!!.alyiit.all are derived from this asi. As it occurs only in a few stanz"s quotes! byH~macandra and is absent in the Bhavisaitak.!i.' Lhanda and Sindhi -e go back to -ohi which is found also in Old Hindi.Bengali and Middle Maithili -asi.\otvery frequent in the Dohils. the third person indicative forms in -anti. p. ShahiduIlah thinks that the Old and Middle.. .:J -as.phol~gical ~oi~ts.aQt·\J~/l. and -ahi :' (as in pucchasiancl pucchahi). seems to be baseless. According to Hemacandra ' the Western. The more regular forms there too are in -e and --. H. Such forms are as frequent in the Dohils as they are in the texts written in Western ApabhraIJlsa..~f the nouns ending in -a. .

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