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Mathematics in India by Kim Plofker

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Appendix A

 

 

Some Basic Features of Sanskrit Language andLiterature

Classical Sanskrit literature in all genres tends to be very conscious of the language’s phonetic and grammatical structure. Mathematical texts in particular may make use of the Sanskrit alphabet for verse-friendly forms of number representation, or construct syllabic abbreviations for mathematical quantities, or adapt grammatical technical terms as mathematical ones. For these reasons, and also simply to be able to read transliterated Sanskrit terms correctly, students of the history of Indian mathematics will find it helpful to have at least an inkling of the linguistic and literary structure of Sanskrit.1 A brief introduction to the characteristics of Sanskrit manuscripts ...

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