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Re: Careful Transliteration

From: Srinath Chakravarty (
Date: Thu Jan 11 2001 - 11:17:46 PST

Sri.  MahavishNu:  Your comments are very welcome; I am
sure that many members of this list have observed transliteration
problems.  The issue comes back to whether the writer is spelling
out a word from Tamil or Sanskrit - most people appear to use
the Tamil standards with Sanskrit words interchangeably.
Unfortunately, one size does not fit all here, and the resulting
inconsistencies have been described by Sri. Mani Varadarajan
and Sri. Anand Karalapakkam earlier.

There is no obvious way to resolve this, since the very fact of
whether a word belongs to Sanskrit or Tamil is disputed by most
people.  In this controversial setting, one can easily make the
argument that a particular word is from Tamil and so can be
spelled ambigiously -- an "ambiguity" that would cease to exist
under that argument.

It would be a good idea to agree upon some tranliteration
standards for both languages, to begin with.  Then, we can use
them to our advantage at least in stotrams and pasurams, where
the "origin" of the words are not in dispute [as opposed to casual
usage].  I request the administrator to provide such guidelines.

-Srinath C.

> From: "Srimahavishnu Vinjamuri" <>
> Subject: Need to do careful transliteration
> For the benefit of a very few Bhagavatas,
> who are frequently writing wrongly transliterated samskruta words in the list and elsewhere, adiyen wishes to post the following sanskrit words tranliterated into Englsh which can serve as a guideline.
> [.................]
> Not all of the above (except the first two) are of serious nature. But there is nothing wrong in writing the things rightly.
> It is higly offensive to find fault with Bhagavatottamas. I tender many many apologies. My only intention is to serve a very few Bhagavatas in improving their transliteration.

           - SrImate rAmAnujAya namaH -
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