Sanskrit and Other Classical Languages



Sanskrit is one of the languages of Indo-European family. Indo-European is the name given to the family of languages to which Sanskrit belongs. The name is based on the fact that this family covers most of Europe and extends eastward as far as northern India, with a total body of speakers of nearly one and a half billion. Indo-Germanic is a synonymous term preferred by German linguists based on the fact that it includes the easternmost and western most members of the family.

Sanskrit has its close relationship with other classical Languages of Indo-European group like, Latin Greek, French, German etc,. For Example the numerals from one to ten are mostly similar in these languages. In Italian Sie- six, settle- seven, otto- eight, nove- nine, etc. The words of closes family relationship like father, mother, sister, brother, etc. as well as a number of other fundamental words of Sanskrit resemble with other classical languages of this family. For example: Bhratr in the Sanskrit, Brother in the German, bhratheir in the Irish brat in the Russian, beradar in the Persian. Pitr in the Sanskrit, Frater in the Latin Pharater in Greek.

Some other similarities can be found between Sanskrit and other classical Languages.
Sanskrit          German          Greek            Latin         English
Matri             Mutter          Mateera          Mater         mother
Sunus             Sohn            Yas              Natus         Son
Svasr             Schwester       altheffee        sorror        sister
Apas, jalam       wasser          neero            acqua         water
Dvi               zwei            theeo            duo           two
Ashta              acht           okta             Octo          eight 

The verbal system of Avestan so clearly resembles with that of Sanskrit, that a student of Sanskrit after mastering Avestan phonology can easily understand Sanskrit. The Slavic language which is one of the chief languages of Satam group of Indo-Uropean languages outside Asia, has many resemblances. Not only in the languages but similarities can be found between Slavic and Indian Culture.

Curiously enough, the Sanskrit Imperative Ending -u seems to be preserved in some Gothic imperative forms of the third person singular and plural like at-steigadau, lingandau. It is evidently the same- au which is evident in all the quotable forms of passive optative in Gothic.

The peculiar perfect endings in Sanskrit veda, vettha, veda have their exact counter parts in Greek, oida, oistha, oide. The endings of reduplicating perfects are not so easily reconcilable, but see, Greek.: gegona, and in Sanskrit yajna.

In perfect tense, Latin has generalized the medial endings. Thus tutudi, though in meaning identical with Sanskrit tutoda, agrees in form more with Sanskrit tutude, tutudai.

From the above illustrations, it is clear that the Sanskrit language has many resemblances with other classical languages of Indo-European group like, Latin, Greek, German, Iranian, Slavic etc