The formal Sutra style never grew out of date and it is predominant in Grammar. It appears in the leading work on Metrics and was often adopted in Poetics. The Bharatiya Natyashastra contains reminiscences of the Sutra style. In philosophy profound thoughts are interrupted by scholastic and pedantic arguments, where a clear exposition would be far more attractive to western taste. To the readers such a literature would have appeared dry and over-simple.
In the great period of Sanskrit literature experimental science was at low ebb and whichever field required experiments had little importance. Medicine developed a considerable knowledge of symptoms and treatment of diseases however surgery was banned and the acceptance of frenzied sources of disease hampered serious research. The mathematical achievements lay in the field of algebra as well as in the invention of a system of notation. If political theory never developed then legal studies were conducted with much insight. The contents of the Dharmasastras are more of humane character of their contents. In verse form maxims on human life won greater circulation than prose Sutras. This form of composition was aided by the example of the epic that was often adopted for scientific works. Sloka was easy to write and remember. Varahamihira and Bhaskara in the field of astrology and mathematics proceeded to develop their scientific doctrines in complex metres. Technical science was reduced to roughly styled Slokas which were popular for medical formulas.
There is the tendency to use homely metaphors or similes as well as illustration of doctrines of ordinary life. The dangers of such illustrations were not avoided. Many popular illustrations became came into regular use. The grammatical principle that the most important element in a compound coupled with two things should come first is popularized. It is used as a scientific principle, abhyarhitam purvam.
A characteristic which pervades the whole of the scientific literature is the love of subdivision and of inventing distinctions. Everything has to be in a proper manner irrespective to the nature of the subject-matter. The historical method is lacking that yields to the more attractive habit of analysis of a superficial character. In the subdivisions there is often much ingenuity in finding legitimate ground of distinction. The practice of accepting what has been traditionally handed down has a serious effect. It results in ingenious efforts to reinterpret the old. There was constant progress but it was hampered by the necessity of making out that no change was actually taking place. New customs were allowed by Manu or some other Smriti. In astronomy it is seen that Brahmagupta attacks sensible innovations of Aryabhatta on the grounds that it drifts from traditional knowledge.
Poetical form led to the use of superfluous expressions that were used to fill up verses. Clearness was done by the adoption of the later or scientific style which is seen in the expositions of law and in the works on poetics.
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