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July 27, 2013 / A

Pity for the dull

One of the amusing ideas that appears throughout commentary on Panini is that certain rules are “for the sake of the dullard.” The idea is that Panini, in his great compassion for his slow-witted students, used certain structures for the sake of clarity and (presumably) ease of instruction. I don’t know if the rule I’m on now is an instance of one of these, but I’m grateful for the assistance all the same:

6.4.157 प्रिय-स्थिर-स्फिरो-रु-बहुल-गुरु-वृद्ध-तृप्र-दीर्घ-वृन्दारकाणां प्र-स्थ-स्फ-वर्-बंहि-गर्-वर्षि-त्रप्-द्राघि-वृन्दाः
The first set of terms is replaced by the second when इष्ठ, इमन्, or ईयस् follows.

The first set relates to the second, and the second to the first. So if I forget part of the first, I can check what the second says, and vice-versa. What makes this especially pleasant is the simple meter of the second phrase:

प्र-स्थ-स्फ-वर्-बं-हि-गर्-व-र्षि-त्रप्-द्रा-घि-वृ-न्दाः

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