The Carridukogam, Prakrta-English Dictionary is first of its kind and also a modest one. The Prakrtas had assimilated many a regional matter and imbibed the Dravidian elements is a fact beyond further perusal. The author has demonstrated many cognate Telgu words for the Prakrta Vocables. And the book is being revised further.
At the outset, let it be clarified that the Carndukosain : Prakrta - English Dictionary, is but a modest effort also as far as my knowledge goes, a maiden attempt in an international tongue. It is by the bye, just prolegomena, a bird's eye view. For a comprehensive Prakrta-English Dictionary, etymologically and philologically arranged with special reference to cognate Indo-European and Dravidian languages, a far cry as of now, the preriquisite is critically edited texts with Index-verborum. Most of the edited Prakrta and Apabhram§a works are unfortunately injudicious and at best mere MSS. sans usual scribal errors. Moreover, bulk of the available literature of the MIA is still in MSS. form. Further, the MSS. bristle with twenty and twenty corrupt readings due to transmissional vicissitudes. Even if the author descended from heaven and saw the MSS of his own work, he would not have been able to restore it to its pristine form with ease. Such is the MSS tradition at present.
In the preparation of this Canidukosain, we are confronted with th formidable task of determining the precise or exact form of a word, as the clamorous presence of highly plausible variants exist. For example: - there are SameIla, Sam&lla and SamgoHal for multitude; Chivvara, Chivvira, and Chivvari for flatnosed. It is difficult and also laborious to hit upon the correct form of a word. It is, therefore, urgent desideratum for the furtherance of Prakrta studies to publish critically edited texts.
To call a spade a spade, it is not unlikely, the Prakrta Texts have, over the years, undergone considerable change in language, mostly due to provincial mornings of the copyists at every successive stage of copying That is why, the great Savant Sten know (1867-1948) complained that the preeminent poet Rujasekhara (c.860-930 AD) a 'SarvabbUsAcatura' did not distinguish the Sauraseni and the Maharastri while at work on the par excellence Sattaka, the "Kappuramamjari", which is wholly written in S auraseni.
It goes without saying that the available. Prakrta Grammars cannot be our sole guide for editing the Pkt. Texts, as they are not exhaustive and also as their approach towards various Prakrtas is piecemeal. It is tempting to cite an example in this regard to bring home the point. Vararuci, the alleged the earliest Prakrta Grammarian, gives no information about the Prakrtas of Mvaghosa's drama, the SUradvatiputrakam (only fragments are recovered) or of the Gandhari Dhammapadarn (it is a misnomer to name it kharosthi or Prakrta Dhammapadam) or of the Jaina Canon. Hence, unqualified faith on the Prakrta Grammarians. may lead us nowhere.
Already, a heavy price is paid for the indolent neglect of Prakrta literature resulting in the loss of many a unique Prakrta work of immense literary value. What remains now is but a trickle of that mighty Prakrta ocean. To cite a few lost ones -
a) Padaliptasuri's Taramgalola, which is irretrivably lost.
b) Adhyaraja's `Maricavadha', of which we are very much in the dark.
c) Cinadeva's Tuddhakatha' in Magadhi, about which we know next to nothing.
d) Bhadrabahu's `Vasudevakatha' is no more extant.
e) Ramila-Somila's `Sudrakakatha' is but a mere name today.
f) Devagupta's `Supurisacariyam' has gone into the limbo of oblivion.
g) Caturmukha's `Abdhimanthanane, which is in Apabhrarn§a is not available now.
h) Wisamabanalila' of Anandavardhan the celebrated author of Dhvanyaloka is not to be seen.
i) Mahasena's `Sulocana' is yet to be retrieved
j) Halika's Vilasavati, has not come down to us as yet.
k) Jayarama's `Dhammaparikkha' has not seen the light of the day.
I) Sarvasena's `Harivijayanf, based on the famous episode of Parijatapaharana, is limited solely with citations in the Rhetoric.
m) Aparajita's `Mrgankalekha' is unknown only through the reference by Rajasekhara in the prologue of KM., is non-existant.
n) Chappannaya's `Setu' (total erotic poems, cited in the Nigthiearni) has submerged in the womb of Time.
o) Prabhaiijana's `Jasaharacariyam' is not to be found anywhere.
p) Harivarsa's `Harivamsuppatti' is extinct.
q) Jine§vara's `Nivvanalilavadf, of which we are entirely ignorant.
r) Bhadra's `Goggahaipkahu', an Apabhramsa poem of VI Century is lost forever.
To top it all, is the loss of GuKtadhya's Brhp.tkatha in Paigaci, the store house of peppy stories. It has created a huge linguistic hiatus as well as poetic lacuna.4 It is interesting to note that Buna's (c. 630 AD) best favourer hana, a PrAkrta poet, whose work Puspadamta, (c. 930 AD) a versatile Apabhrarpga poet, is obviously' not in the know of ; has been alive just about three hundred years prior to him."
It is an established fact that Prukttas have rich, extensive and varied literature". The Prakrta literature presents in amzing phenomenon in the field of Indian literary activity critics are of the opinion that even the puranas and Narrative belles-letters are but mere adaptations in Sanskrit from the original prakrtas.
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