Page:Sanskrit Grammar by Whitney p1.djvu/8

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cessors; and a traditional method was thus established which has been perhaps somewhat too closely adhered to, at the expense of clearness and of proportion, as well as of scientific truth. Accordingly, my attention has not been directed toward a profounder study of the grammatical science of the Hindu schools: their teachings I have been contented to take as already reported to Western learners in the existing Western grammars.

2. To include also in the presentation the forms and constructions of the older language, as exhibited in the Veda and the Brāhmaṇa. Grassmann’s excellent Index-Vocabulary to the Rig-Veda, and my own manuscript one to the Atharva-Veda (which I hope soon to be able to make public[1]), gave me in full detail the great mass of Vedic material; and this, with some assistance from pupils and friends, I have sought to complete, as far as the circumstances permitted, from the other Vedic texts and from the various works of the Brāhmana period, both printed and manuscript.

3. To treat the language throughout as an accented one, omitting nothing of what is known respecting the nature of the Sanskrit accent, its changes in combination and inflection, and the tone of individual words — being, in all this, necessarily dependent especially upon the material presented by the older accentuated texts.

4. To cast all statements, classifications, and so on, into a form consistent with the teachings of linguistic science. In doing this, it has been necessary to discard a few of the long-used and familiar divisions and terms of Sanskrit grammar — for example, the classification and nomenclature of „special tenses” and “general tenses” (which is so indefensible that one can only wonder at its having maintained itself so long), the order and terminology of the conjugation-classes, the separation in treatment of the facts of internal and ex-

  1. It was published, as vol. XII. of the Journal of the American Oriental Society, in 1861.