The ancient text, "Ashtadhyayi," by
Panini is the best-known vyarkarana work, and it set the linguistic
rules for classical Sanskrit. The "Ashtadhyayi" is divided into
four parts: phonetics, the structure of words and
sentences, root words, and groups of nouns and noun phrases.
The Vedangas, in general, provide insight
into not only the language of the Vedas but also the meaning,
structure and poetic meters of the ancient text. They also provide
understanding of other post-Vedic texts and aspects of Hindu and
In addition to vyarkarana, the Vedangas
- Chhandas -- the study of prosody,
which looks at poetic meter. This includes analyzing the number of
syllables per verse and any fixed patterns within them.
- Shiksha -- the study of phonology,
phonetics and pronunciation. This focuses on the letters of the
Sanskrit alphabet and the way words are combined and expressed in a
- Nirukta – the study of
etymology. It is concerned with proper interpretation of the
Sanskrit words, given their context in the ancient texts.
- Kalpa -- the study of ritual
instructions, including for rites of passage. It also explores the
concepts of individual duty and proper conduct.
- Jyotisha -- the study of
timekeeping. It deals with the astrological and astronomical aspects
of selecting the most dates and times to perform Vedic rituals and