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A History of Sanskrit Literature


M. Monier-Williams's Indian Wisdom. That book, however,
although it
furnishes, in addition to the translated specimens,
some account of
the chief departments of Sanskrit literature, is not a
history. There
is thus distinctly a twofold demand in this country for
a history
of Sanskrit literature. The student is in want of a
guide setting
forth in a clear and trustworthy manner the results of
research down
to the present time, and the cultivated English reader
looks for a
book presenting in an intelligible and attractive form
information
which must have a special interest to us owing to our
close relations
with India.
To lack of space, no less than to the scope of the
present series,
is due the exclusion of a full account of the technical
literature
of law, science, and art, which contains much that
would interest
even the general reader; but the brief epitome given in
the Appendix
will, I hope, suffice to direct the student to all the
most important
authorities.
As to the bibliographical notes, I trust that, though
necessarily
restricted in extent, they will enable the student to
find all
further information he may want on matters of detail;
for instance,
the evidence for approximate dates, which had
occasionally to be
summarily stated even in the text.
In writing this history of Sanskrit literature, I have
dwelt more on
the life and thought of Ancient India, which that
literature embodies,
than would perhaps have appeared necessary in the case
of a European
literature. This I have done partly because Sanskrit
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