"Death of Sanskrit" (Re: Asiatic Society, Calcutta & Bombay)
- Some interesting information on Kavindracharya Sarasvati, Panditaraj
Jagannath etc can be seen in Pollock, Sheldon's article 'The death
of Sanskrit' available at http://dsal.uchicago.edu/sanskrit/papers/.
It is an account of continuation of literary activity in Sanskrit:
"One evening in about the year 1140, a literary gathering took place
in a private home in Pravarapura (present-day Srinagar), in the Vale
of Kashmir. The host was Alankara (also called Lankaka), an official
of the Kashmir royal court and the older brother of the poet and
lexicographer Mankha, in whose honor the event was arranged. Man?
kha was to give a reading of his recently completed courtly epic on
the god Siva, the Srikanthacarita (The Deeds of Siva). It is in fact
from the autobiographical narrative in the last chapter of this work
that we learn about the literary evening. As the poet makes his way
through the audience hall, he greets the various guests and briefly
describes their accomplishments in the world of Sanskrit culture.
And an extraordinary assembly it was. Foremost among the scholars
present was Ruyyaka, Mankha's teacher, whose Alankarasarvasva
(Compendium of Rhetorical Figures) had secured him a reputation as
the greatest authority on tropology in the century since Mammata
wrote his famous textbook Kavyaprakasa (Light on Literature [ca.
1050]). Kalhana was there Mankha calls him by his formal Sanskrit
name Kalyana in the course of writing the Rajatarangini (River of
Kings), the most remarkable historical poem ever composed in the
Altogether more than thirty guests were in attendance: philosophers,
theologians, architects, physicians, ambassadors, including one from
the court of the Gahadavalas of Kanauj, then at their zenith, and
another from the Silahara court on the southwest coast. In short,
this was an assembly that embodied all the intellectual force and
expressive power and refined cosmopolitanism of Sanskrit literary
culture at its most brilliant, a group of men who could look back
ten centuries and more and see themselves as equals of the greatest
literati of the past. It was, to be sure, a brilliance of the sort
Kashmir had produced repeatedly for more than half a millennium, at
least from the time of the celebrated poet Bhartrmentha in the sixth
century. What makes this particular generation of Sanskrit poets so
noteworthy is that it turned out to be Kashmir's last.
Within fifty years the creative Sanskrit literary culture of Kashmir
had disappeared. The production of literature in all of the major
genres (courtly epic, drama, and the rest) ceased entirely, and ...."
--- In IndiaArchaeology@yahoogroups.com, "vishalsagarwal"
> The Asiatic Society of Bengal really has rare and uniquemanuscripts,
> such as the oldest manuscript of RV, and unique manuscripts ofKalpaanupadasutra
> Anupada Sutra of Samaveda (attributed to Jaimini),
> of Samveda, and an Arshanukramani of Bashkala Rgveda. Besides, ithas
> a manuscript of Shankhayana Shakha Samhita of Rgveda.collection
> Several manuscripts in the collection bear the signature of the
> famous Kavindracharya Sarasvati, who had created a fabled
> of Hindu religious texts in Varanasi in the reign of Shah Jehan.