Occasionally, whilst researching, I stumble across some old [but wonderfully presented] information that has been obscured by the mainstream’s modern mania for arm waving.
This simple [but wonderfully presented] information is contained in the Sanskrit-English dictionary completed in 1899 by Sir Monier Monier-Williams.
Sanskrit-English Dictionary – Sir Monier Monier-Williams – 1899
PDF downloads via: IndiaDivine.org
In one simple table Sir Monier Monier-Williams elegantly illustrates how the matching vowel and consonant sounds [in Sanskrit and English] have been shoehorned into a basic character set of just 26 Latin letters for written English.
Learning English is the arcane art of remembering over one million words that are constructed using [something like] 64 linguistic concepts [24 consonants + 18 digraphs + 2 ligatures + 20 vowels] which are then [somehow] shoehorned into a basic character set of just 26 Latin letters.
Devanagari, also called Nagari is an abugida (alphasyllabary) alphabet of India and Nepal.
It is written from left to right, has a strong preference for symmetrical rounded shapes within squared outlines, and is recognisable by a horizontal line that runs along the top of full letters.
The Nagari script has roots in the ancient Brahmi script family.
Brahmi is the modern name given to one of the oldest writing systems used in South and Central Asia during the final centuries BCE and the early centuries CE.
The best-known Brahmi inscriptions are the rock-cut edicts of Ashoka in north-central India, dated to 250–232 BCE.
The origin of the script is still much debated, with current Western academic opinion generally agreeing (with some exceptions) that Brahmi was derived from or at least influenced by one or more contemporary Semitic scripts, but a current of opinion in India favors the idea that it is connected to the much older and as-yet undeciphered Indus script.
The pillars of Ashoka are a series of columns dispersed throughout the Indian subcontinent, erected or at least inscribed with edicts by the Mauryan king Ashoka during his reign in the 3rd century BC.
Sir Monier Monier-Williams also provides a wonderful explanation [via his 1,333 dictionary pages] for the original richness of the English vocabulary.
It appears Sir Monier Monier-Williams belonged to the Anything But India school of thought because he argued “the Phoenician alphabet spread about 800 B.C. first westward towards Greece and Italy, and secondly eastward towards India”.
Unfortunately [for Sir Monier Monier-Williams] he supported his argument with another of his elegant illustrations which clearly illustrates how the ancient Brahmi script could have travelled westward Out of India to [subsequently] form the Phoenician, Greek and Roman alphabets.
The Monier-Williams narrative is supported by the mainstream narrative of Alexander the Great.
Alexander III of Macedon (20/21 July 356 BC – 10/11 June 323 BC), commonly known as Alexander the Great, was a King (Basileus) of the Ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon[a] and a member of the Argead dynasty.
Seeking to reach the “ends of the world and the Great Outer Sea”, he invaded India in 326 BC, but was eventually forced to turn back at the demand of his troops.
Alexander died in Babylon in 323 BC, the city he planned to establish as his capital, without executing a series of planned campaigns that would have begun with an invasion of Arabia.
However, in support of Edward Pococke’s Out of India theory [where “the primitive history of Greece is the primitive history of India”] we find Alexander the Great has an Indian doppelgänger called Ashoka the Great.
The primitive history of Greece is the primitive history of India.
It is the history of much of India, in its language, in its religion, in its sects, in its princes and bravest clans ; and he who shall attempt to decypher those venerable manuscripts, miscalled ” Greek Mythology, ” and ” Greek Heroic-Legends ” without bringing these combined lights to bear in one focus upon their time-worn surface, will still continue a stranger to the
true history of primitive Hellas.
India in Greece – Edward Pococke – 1852
Ashoka the Great (304 BCE – 232 BCE), known also as Piyadasi (Pali. Sanskrit: Priyadarśin – meaning ‘good looking’), and Devanaŋpiya (Pali. Sanskrit:Devānāmpriya meaning ‘beloved of the Gods’), was the emperor of the Mauryan Empire from 273 BCE to 232 BCE.
After a number of military conquests, Ashoka reigned over most of South Asia and beyond, from present-day Afghanistan to Bengal and as far south as Mysore.
An early supporter of Buddhism, Ashoka established monuments marking several significant sites in the life of Shakyamuni Buddha, and according to Buddhist tradition was closely involved in the preservation and transmission of Buddhism.
Wikipedia have dropped “the Great” in their opening Ashoka paragraph.
Archive.org shows Wikipedia once happily used “Ashoka the Great”.
Which reminds me of Mark Twain: Truth is stranger than fiction.