Course Descriptions

01:013:180 Elementary Sanskrit I, Fall

Sanskrit is one of the world's oldest and greatest languages. Its sophisticated grammar and the voluminous body of literature in fields such as poetry, theology, philosophy, natural science, music and mathematics, make it a subject of interest for students of linguistics, religious studies, philosophy, history, literature and many other fields. This introductory course will give students a grounding in the basic structure of the language, allowing them to develop the ability to read independently some of the fundamental texts of the Sanskrit corpus, such as Bhagavad-gītā, Pañcatantra, Rāmāyaṇa and Buddha-carita by the end of the second semester, and eventually to approach more advanced texts such as Nyāya-kusumāñjalī, Yoga-sūtras, or the mahā-kāvyas of Kālidāsa and others. The primary focus of the course will be on learning to read and write in the Devanāgarī script and learning the grammatical structures of language, though time will also be dedicated to becoming familiar with the great breadth of Sanskrit literary genres.