Mahabhasya is a Sanskrit commentary by Patanjali on selected rules of Sanskrit Grammar from treatise of Panini, the Ashtadhyayi.
Mahabhasya can be dated to the 2nd century B.C. Patanjali is one of the three most famous Sanskrit grammarians of ancient India. The Indian linguistic science reached its definite form in the hands of Patanjali. The system that was established is detailed in regards to phonology, grammar and morphology. Etymology is discussed that lead to semantic explanations. His main contribution lies in the treatment of the principles of grammar enunciated by him.
The semantic discourse into grammar was further elaborated by Patanjali to such an extent that Mahabhasya can be called a mix of grammar as such as well as a philosophy of grammar. Many commentaries on Mahabhasya were written among which Kaiyata's commentary named Pradipa is most celebrated.
The first part of Mahabhasya was published by James R. Ballantyne (1813-1864). This opened the native Indian grammatical tradition to a wider European scholarly audience.
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