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DEDICATED TO: PA_N.INI and TOLKA_PPIYAN-
Dr. S. Kalyanaraman 11 May 1998.
The author assumes full responsibility for the semantic and etymological judgements made and the errors that might have crept in with thousands of database iterations in organizing the semantic clusters found in the word lists (The lexicon includes over half-a-million Indian words). The author is indebted to Prof. Krishnamurthy who first observed from a review (1994) of an earlier draft of the Lexion (alphabetially sequenced) that the model of Carl Darling Buck's work for Indo-European languages may also be adapted. The author hopes that with the impossibility of 'dating' the origin of a word, all its inherent limitations, the omissions, intentional or otherwise and errors that will in due course be pointed out by scholars specialized in their fields, the Indian Lexicon will be a tentative, but bold start of a skeleton dictionary of the Indian linguistic area ca. 3000 B.C. and will be expanded further to include modern words.
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An Overview and Objectives
This is a comparative study of the 'semantics' of lexemes of all the languages of India (which may also be referred to, in a geographical/ historical phrase, as the Indian linguistic area). The objective of the lexicon is to discover the semantic repertoire of India ca. 3000 B.C. to further facilitate efforts at deciphering the inscriptions and script of the Sarasvati-Sindhu civilization.
The Indian Lexicon establishes an Indian Linguistic Area, ca. 3000 B.C. by authenticating the use of the lexemes for inscriptions of the civilization of the ancient period.
This Indian lexicon seeks to establish a semantic concordance, across the languages or numeraire facile of the Indian linguistic area: from Brahui to Santali to Bengali, from Kashmiri to Mundarica to Sinhalese, from Marathi to Hindi to Nepali, from Sindhi or Punjabi or Urdu to Tamil. A semantic structure binds the languages of India, which may have diverged morphologically or phonologically as evidenced in the oral tradition of Vedic texts, or epigraphy, literary works or lexicons of the historical periods. This lexicon, therefore, goes beyond, the commonly held belief of an Indo-European language and is anchored on proto-Indian sememes.
The work covers over 8,300 semantic clusters which span and bind the Indian languages. The basic finding is that thousands of terms of the Vedas, the Munda languages (e.g., Santali, Mundarica, Sora; cf. Munda lexemes in Sanskrit)(37 kb.), the so-called Dravidian languages and the so-called Indo-Aryan languages have common roots. This belies the received wisdom of cleavage between, for example, the Dravidian or Munda and the Aryan languages.
The idea of a semantic dictionary
Sememes (213 kb.)
These sememes should be distinguished from dha_tus or verb roots since the radicals span both nouns and verbs and also include attributive thoughts connoted, for example, by adjectives.
Sememes are clustered in the Indian Lexicon more like classemes (a term used by some European linguists, e.g. Eugene Coseriu, to refer to the relatively abstract SEMANTIC FEATURES shared by LEXICAL items belonging to different semantic FIELDS, e.g. animate/inanimate, adult/child. The term contrasts with the irreducible semantic features (SEMES) which work, at a very particular level, within a particular semantic field, e.g. table being identified in terms of 'number of legs', 'shape', etc. (See Lyons 1977: Ch.9)
Many sememes are from Sanskrit which re-inforced the development of the literary structures of historical periods of all the languages flowing from proto-Indian lingua franca. CDIAL (with comparative etymological groups collected over a period of 40 years until 1966) provides thousands of possible derivations or phonological reconstructions of 'old Indo-aryan form' in Sanskrit, within its 14,845 head-words. A magnificent attempt was made in the past by linguists of unsurpassed erudition, to identify the sememes of Indian languages. A notable result was the formation and delineation of the grammatical rules of the Sanskrit language.
Indian Lexicon establishes that over 3000 etyma of the Dravidian Etymological Dictionary (DEDR) have concordant sememes in the lexemes of Indo-Aryan and Munda languages, thus negating the linguists' differentiation of the Dravidian tongues from the Indo-Aryan and Munda language streams.The Indus (Sarasvati-Sindhu) Script decipherment problem
Many lexemes will be dated to circa 3000 B.C., when the most expansive civilization of the times flourished in thousands of settlement sites in the Sarasvati-Sindhu doab. This dating for the selected lexemes is based on a suggested rebus/semantic clustering method to decipher the script of the civilization. The underlying language may be called the Indian; hence, the lexicon is called "An Indian Lexicon".
A paradigm change is posited that circa 3000 B.C., the Indo-Aryan, Dravidian and Munda sub-families of languages had not been differentiated fully. This hypothesis has to be validated further through more linguistic/lexical studies.Etyma in Niruktam (25 kb.)
Roots (Dha_tupa_t.ha) (156 kb.)
Dha_tupa_t.ha (lit. a study of roots or verb forms) reputedly by Pa_n.ini provides a list of 2200 roots (in ten technical classes) with almost all irregular and noteworthy forms which can be expanded in the series of active, passive, casual desiderative and derivative groups.
The classification of verbal bases in the following ten classes is based on vikaran.a the inserted conjugational affix, the conjugational sign placed between the root and the terminations.Verb forms (Whitney) (42 kb.)
The roots, verb-forms, and primary derivatives of the Sanskrit language : A supplement to his Sanskrit grammar.
Whitney's work lists all the quotable roots of the Sanskrit
language together with the tense and conjugation-systems made from them, the noun and
adjective (infinitival and participal) formations that attach themselves most closely to
the verb and with the other derivative noun and adjective-stems usually classed as
primary. "... since etymology is