pronunciation differences, discussion that led to creation of audio-tipitaka




 
lennart wrote:

We had tried a couple of times (locally) to get some Sri Lankan monks (esp.
because of their Indian pronunciation) to recite or even just read Suttas,
have someone record that, and upload it - it would solve the mystery once
and for all for many of those who pick up Pali and are at a loss how to
pronounce properly. Especially are larger body of sound recordings would be
very helpful in letting the proper pronunciation "sink in".

I guess, one day, someone will do it :-) At least from Sri Lanka I know that
(in some forest monasteries) they actually try to make the pronunciation as
"authentic" as possible (well, as far as you can reconstruct it anyways -
Bhante Sumedha Bhadra comes to my mind, for example)


Ven. U. Silananda pronunciation on mp3's at buddhanet

jadhao:
hi. MP3 files of some paritta and other chants by Ven. U. Silananda and
others are available on Buddhanet. Pronounciations in these are correct.
 Entire tipitaka may not be available on net in audio format. But some
chantings are sure available. They can give a lots of idea. You may not
need entire tipitaka for learning pronounciations. If you are able to
learn how to pronounce all letters, a few chantings should be enough in
my view.

Ven. U. Silananda (Burmese style Pali chant)
http://www.buddhanet.net/audio-chant.htm
chants include english translation between every few lines



oddities in Sri Lankan pronunciation

ven. kumara responding to lennart:
I'm not sure about the monks you're referring to, but generally the
Sri-lankans pronounces Pali quite accurately (compared to Thais and
Burmese in general), except for a few oddities. Here are some of them
that I can think of now:

    * Double 'g's are pronounced as a nasal guttural sound. E.g., "maggo
 is pronounced as "mang-go". (Thais and Burmese don't do this.)

    * The short 'a' at the end of a word is sounded as a weak "er".
E.g., "kamma" as "kammer". (Thais and Burmese don't do this.)

    * When it comes to chanting, many of them tend to drag to last
syllable at the end of the line or sentence. (The monks of the forest
tradition seem to avoid this though. Some Thais do this sometimes, esp.
at the end of the chanting.)

lennart responds:
Dear Bhante,



I think the widely available paritta chantings are a bit misleading as they

almost tend to be "artistic"...



I'm not sure about the monks you're referring to, but generally the

> Sri-lankans pronounces Pali quite accurately (compared to Thais and Burmese

> in general), except for a few oddities. Here are some of them that I can

> think of now:

>

> * Double 'g's are pronounced as a nasal guttural sound. E.g., "maggo is

> pronounced as "mang-go". (Thais and Burmese don't do this.)

>

? Never heard a Sri Lankan say "mango for maggo" :-)



> * The short 'a' at the end of a word is sounded as a weak "er". E.g.,

> "kamma" as "kammer". (Thais and Burmese don't do this.)

>

yes, the Thai/Burmese pronounce it almost as ā ... (from an Indian

standpoint).



>  * When it comes to chanting, many of them tend to drag to last syllable at

> the end of the line or sentence. (The monks of the forest tradition seem to

> avoid this though. Some Thais do this sometimes, esp. at the end of the

> chanting.)

>

yes, unfortunately, I think esp. the temple chanting was influenced by

muslim (?) chanting (or some other influence), at least that what it sounds

like (the dragging you mention)... a trend which seems to have crept into

chanting in the last 50 years...

2 year old boy spontaneously chanting Pali in the style of 6th century monk

A very interesting alternative is Dhammaruwan's style of chanting.
http://theravadin.wordpress.com/2008/08/09/chanting-in-the-6th-century/
(inside that page there is a link to mp3 audio of the boy chanting)

example of Sri Lankan forest style chant

Also forest monks tend to avoid any singing style, an example for which would be Bhante Silagavesi's chanting
http://nissarana.org/index.php?option=com_rubberdoc&view=category&id=14:pali-pirith-chanting&Itemid=57



But rather than chanting, just reading the texts gives an even clearer

pronunciation, IMHO. So Frank's initial idea is not bad. Would be great to

find someone who would like to do that.


kamma vs. kammer

gunnar:
<* The short 'a' at the end of a word is sounded as a weak "er".
E.g., "kamma" as "kammer". (Thais and Burmese don't do this.)


Some linguists think this may be the original pronounciation, or at
least a quite old one, in both Sanskrit and Prakrit/Pali; that final
short a was weakened to a schwa (written in phonetical script with an
inverted e) and finally, in modern North Indian languages, muted. (One
may compare with final e in French, which is still sometimes pronounced
as a schwa in poetry and singing, but is normally mute in prose and
ordinary talk).
 


Comments