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INTBODUCTION.                                                            397

American Mission Press a somewhat comprehensive work on the history of Assam in
Assamese. A more modern work based on these buranjis is the history of the Koch
Kings of Kamrup, by Mr, E, A. Gait, LC.S,, which appeared in the Journal of
the Asiatic Society of Bengal for 1893.

Assamese literature is by no means confined to history. Some seventy poetical
works, principally religious, have been catalogued. One of the oldest and at the same
time most celebrated poets was SriHankar, the founder in Assam of the Mahapuruijia
sect of Vaishijavas, who flourished about 450 years ago in the reign of Baja 5ara-
narayana, and who was a voluminous writer. His best known work is a translation of
the §rimad Bhagarata Purana. Amo^g his contemporaries may be mentioned Rania-
haraswatl alias Ananta Kand&li who translated both the Maha-bharata and the
Kamayapa into his native language, and Madhab, the author of the JBhakti-ratfiauwli,
the Ratndkar TlJtii, and other works. The Hindu system of medicine was professionally
studied by numerous Assam families of distiaction, and some knowledge of the science
formed one of the necessary accomplishments of a well-bred gentleman. Hence arose a
good stock of medical works, principally translations or adaptations from the Sarv krit
written in the vernacular. A list of forty-two dramatic works in Assamese, written
by Sri gankar, Madhab and their followers, has been published, and many of these
are said to be still frequently acted in the village ndtnghars.

The whole of the Bible was translated into Assamese by the Serampore Missionaries
with the assistance of Atma-ram garmma, in the year 1813, and several editions have
since been issued. In later years the American Baptist Mission Press has issued a
large number of works, religious and lay, and has done much to keep the language pure
and uncontaminated by the neighbouring Bengali. Per a full account of Assamese
literature, see the works mentioned below under the head of Authorities.


Sj W.,—Descriptive Account of Assam; its Local Geography.   Also a History of the Tea Plant of
Assam, and a short Account of the neighbouring Tribes.   Calcutta, 1841.
•RIM PHEKIIL 'PHUKAff,—A few Remarks on the Assamese Language.   Sibsagar, 1855.
BEAMBS, J.,—Outlines of Indian Philology with a map showing the Distribution of Indian Dmqutge^
Calcutta, 1867*
GUST, B. $.r~A Skatch of the Modern Languages of the East Indies, pp. 55 and ff.   London, 1878*
BAISES, J. A*,—Census of India, 1891.   General Eeport, 1893, p. 144
ANDERSON, J. D.,—-Assamese and Bengali.   Calcutta, 1896*
GBIEBSON, G. A.,-~uU«ani6«0 Literature.   Indian Antiquary, Vol. xxv, pp, 57 and ft, 1806.   [This is a
resume of Ananda Ram Phek&l Phpkan's book quoted above.]
GUBDOK, P.,—-Some Assamese Proverbs.   Shffiong, 1896.
GOPAL CHAUDBA DAS,—Patantur Mala, a ooUection of Assamese Prorerbs.   Dibrugarh, 1900,
(The following are the principal works on Aswinese history, founded                authorities, which I hm
seen or heard of.)
KKilL PHUKAN,—A brief compilation, in the Bengali language, was printed and published
by him in 1829.
BOB BAPA AND Klft-NiTH TZHffw PHUKAX,—In 1S44, ihese publisho<l at the Aaa-icaw
Mission Press, Sibsagar, a more comprehensive work in „