Language Variant subtags for Sanskrit

John Cowan cowan at
Tue Jul 20 13:56:22 CEST 2010

Michael Everson scripsit:

> What is the difference between "Sanskrit" and "Classical Sanskrit",
> then? Why do you need both? Why not just the three others Vedic,
> Epic, Buddhist?

Because "Sanskrit" is the wider term, or hypernym, for which the others
(including "Classical Sanskrit") are hyponyms.  It sometimes happens
that a hypernym has the same phonological and orthographic shape as its
hypernym: thus what in English are distinguished as "Turkic" (hypernym)
and "Turkish" (hyponym) are the same word in Turkish -- but that does
not mean that Turks can't tell the difference between Turkish and the
other Turkic languages.

We are lost, lost.  No name, no business, no Precious, nothing.  Only empty.
Only hungry: yes, we are hungry.  A few little fishes, nassty bony little
fishes, for a poor creature, and they say death.  So wise they are; so just,
so very just.  --Gollum        cowan at

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