Sanskrit

The Sanskrit Language Program at the University of Virginia is housed here in the Department of Middle Eastern and South Asian Languages and Cultures, and we work closely with colleagues in the Department of Religious Studies and the South Asia Center. Students at any level of their undergraduate or graduate career are encouraged to begin studying Sanskrit. In the first year, the emphasis is on grammar, vocabulary, reading, writing, speaking, and cultural background. The “second-year” courses are in a three-year sequence. One year we read from the Mahabharata in the fall and the Bhagavadgita in the spring. The next year it is the Ramayana in the fall and one of the older Upanisads in the spring. The next year it is the Kathasaritsagara in the fall and the Devi Mahatmya or some other Puranic text in the spring. After at least one year of “second-year” courses, a student may take any of the advanced courses as they become available. Those focus on plays and poetry, poetics, philosophy, the Indian grammatical tradition, and Vedic texts. Which of these courses is offered is often determined by student request. Beyond that, independent study is available for the most advanced students.


 

Sanskrit Faculty

Hueckstedt

Director of Graduate Studies, Language Program Coordinator

Professor

Spring 2019

Course Descriptions

SANS 1010 - Elementary Sanskrit I

An introduction to Sanskrit, focusing on the sounds, the writing system, grammar, the language's history, and the cultural background of the major texts in Sanskrit. The textbook is A.M. Ruppel's Cambridge Introduction to Sanskrit.

Credits: 3 (Fall Only)

SANS 1020 - Elementary Sanskrit II

A continuation of SANS 1010, this course takes the diligent student to the point of being able to read and understand easier Sanskrit texts.

Credits: 3 (Spring Only)

SANS 3012 - Selections from the Mahabharata

Prerequisites: SANS 1020

A second-year course focusing on developing reading fluency in Sanskrit. Selections are chosen to reinforce students’ knowledge of grammar from SANS 1020, to expand vocabulary and to introduce the Mahābhārata, one of ancient India’s major epics.

Credits: 3 (Offered once every three years in the Fall)

SANS 3014 - Selections from the Ramayana of Valmiki

Prerequisites: SANS 1020

A second-year course focusing on developing reading fluency in Sanskrit. Selections are chosen to reinforce student’s knowledge of grammar from SANS 1020, to expand vocabulary, and to introduce the Rāmāyaṇa of Vālmīki, one of the two major epics of ancient India, and the ‘first poem’ in Sanskrit.

Credits: 3 (Offered once every three years in the Fall)

SANS 3016 - Selections from the Kathasaritsagara of Somadeva

Prerequisites: SANS 1020

A second-year course focusing on developing reading fluency in Sanskrit. Selections are chosen to reinforce student’s knowledge of grammar from SANS 1020, to expand vocabulary, and to introduce the Kathāsaritsāgara of Somadeva, the most important collection of story literature in Sanskrit.

Credits: 3 (Offered once every three years in the Fall)

SANS 3022 - Selections from the Bhagavadgita

Prerequisites: SANS 1020 and SANS 3012, 3014, or 3016.

A second-year course focusing on developing reading fluency in Sanskrit. Selections are chosen to reinforce students’ knowledge of grammar from SANS 1020, to expand vocabulary and to introduce the Bhagavadgītā, a major religious text of ancient India.

Credits: 3 (Offerend once every three years in the Spring)

SANS 3024 - Selections from the Upanisads

Prerequisites: SANS 1020 and SANS 3012, 3014, or 3016.

A second-year course focusing on developing reading fluency in Sanskrit. Selections are chosen to reinforce students’ knowledge of grammar from SANS 1020, to expand vocabulary, and to introduce the Upaniṣads, major spiritual texts of ancient India.

Credits: 3 (Offered once every three years in the Spring)

SANS 3026 - Selections from the Puranas

Prerequisites: SANS 1020 and SANS 3012, 3014, or 3016.

A second-year course focusing on developing reading fluency in Sanskrit. Selections are chosen to reinforce student’s knowledge of grammar from SANS 1020, to expand vocabulary, and to introduce the huge corpus of Puranic texts.

Credits: 3 (Offered once every three years in the Spring)

SANS 4993/8993 - Independent Study in Sanskrit

Prerequisites: Instructor permission.

This course is meant to give students training in advanced Sanskrit.

Credits: 1-3