Sanskrit is an ancient Indo-European language. It is a sacred language of Hinduism, Sikhism, Buddhism, and Jainism and is the origin of most Indo-Aryan languages. Today, about 14,000 people in India use it as their daily language mostly for religious purposes. It is one of the 22 official languages of India. Most languages in Pakistan, North India, Nepal and Bangladesh are derived from Sanskrit. The Dravidian languages of South India are separate from Sanskrit and are not derived from Sanskrit. The two primary languages of Pakistan and India, Hindi and Urdu, are derived mainly from Sanskrit.
|No native script.|
Today it is usually written in Devanagari, but it was also previously written in various Brāhmī-based scripts.
Official language in
| India, Uttarakhand|
one of the 22 scheduled languages of India
|Part of a series on|
|Constitutionally recognised languages of India|
Sanskrit is a standardized dialect of Old Indo-Aryan. Its linguistic ancestry can be traced back to Proto-Indo-European. The Indo-European Aryan migration theory proposes that the Indo-Europeans migrated from the Central Asian steppes into South Asia during the early 2nd millennium BC, which brought the Indo-European language Sanskrit with them. The main script used to write Sanskrit is Devanāgarī, but it can be written in the scripts of various other Indian languages and is sometimes written in the Latin alphabet. Historically, it was written in the ancient and holy Brāhmī script.
William Jones, working as a judge in India in the 18th century, studied Sanskrit and recognized its similarities to Latin and Greek and other European languages. This led to the Indo-European languages being recognized as a group of related languages stretching from Europe to India.
Sanskrit literature includes poetry and drama. There are also scientific, technical, philosophical and religious texts. Sanskrit continues to be widely used as a ceremonial language in Hindu religious rituals and Buddhist practice in the form of hymns and chants.
The language has a very complex grammar, with eight grammatical cases, the grammatical genders, and three grammatical numbers. Words are also described based on their qualities. The language is considered highly scientific, as each word in a sentence can describe the number, gender, and action of the subject.
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