Panini's Provenance

Vishal Agarwal vishalagarwal at HOTMAIL.COM
Tue Dec 4 01:00:21 CST 2001

From: Malolan Cadambi <malolan at IASTATE.EDU>
I wish to know more about the provenance of Panini.
VA: He was a native of Shalatura, near the Kabul river and the town of
Taxila in modern North Western Frontier Province (Pakistan). He is therefore
called 'Shalaturiya' in the Mahabhashya. He is also called Dakshiputra as
apparently his mother was named 'Dakshi'.

MC: I have come across incorporation of chandas and other aspects of
paninian grammar in the vedas. By the way Prasad, Ralph Griffith lists
atleast 58 types of chandas in his translation of the Rig Veda.
VA: Your question is unclear to me. If you are referring to the occurrence
of the word 'chhandas' in Ashtadhyayi, then note that in that text it refers
to Vedic Mantra Samhitas. [I will have to check the text to verify if it
means prosodic meter anywhere since I do not recall any such instance]. The
Chhandivichiti is the work of Pingalanaaga, said to be the younger brother
of Panini. There were older chhandovichitis as well of Saitava, Patanjali
(now found as the first chapter of the Nidana sutra) etc.

MC: Does this imply that panini exsisted before the "composition" of the
VA: No, not at all. Panini's works actually presume the existence of dozens
of Vedic texts - Samhitas, Brahmanas, Kalpasutras...


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