Upasargāḥ - PREPOSITIONS

In Sanskrit, there is a group of twentytwo particles which does not refer to any tangible object. When prefixed to roots or words denoting action, these particles come to be called Upasargas or Prepositions. Prepositions always precede the root or word they are joined to except in the Vedas where they are used in many ways. The twentytwo prepositions are as follows -

            pra      parā    apa     sam     anu     āṅ        vi         nis       nir        dus      dur     

            prati    pari     api       abhi    ni         upa     ava      ati        ut         adhi    su

Example for usage -

prati+gam+ti=pratigacchati; pra+sṛ+ti=prasarati; ā+kṛṣ+ti=ākarṣati;

vi+jayaḥ=vijayaḥ; parā+jayaḥ=parājayaḥ

Sometimes the prepositions change the meaning of roots, sometimes they just follow it, and sometimes they qualify it in some special manner. It is, thus, said of them -

dhātvarthaṃ bādhate kaścit kaścittamanuvarttate|

tameva viśinaṣṭyanya upasargagatistridhā ||

To affect the root-sense, is the forte of some,

To retain it, is the way of the other;

Qualify the same, yet another does,

Three-fold is the function of prepositions.

Examples - Affecting the sense - hṛ + ti = harati - takes away ,     

                                                         pra+ hṛ +ti = praharati - attacks

Retention of sense - dā+ti =yacchati-gives,     ( The example here, is different                             pra+dā+ti=prayacchati - gives   from the one given in the Sanskrit version)

Qualification of sense - chad+ṇic+ti = chādayati - covers,

                                       ā+chad+ṇic+ti =ācchādayati, covers from all sides

The root hṛ used with different prepositions is a very good illustration of the way the latter affect the meanings of roots. The examples are versified thus -

upasargeṇa dhātvartho balādanyatra nīyate |

prahārāhārasaṃhāravihāraparihāravat ||

Dragged by force hither and thither

Is the meaning of the root by preposition.

What other examples can be better than these-

Prahāra, āhāra, saṃhāra, vihāra, and parihāra, see?

The following illustration may give an idea of the extent to which a preposition may affect the meaning of a verbal root - hṛñ haraṇe

1.uddharati    2.upaharati    3.adhyāharati            4.udāharati    5.upasaṃharati

6.vyavaharati hṛñ haraṇe    7.vyāharati                 8.viharati        9.samāharati

10.apaharati  11.pariharati  12. āharati                 13.praharati   14.pratiharati

1. throws upwards   2. makes a gift of      3. takes for something else        

4. illustrates               5. concludes              6. Trades       7. expresses              8. sports

9. gathers                   10. steals                   11. solves      12. Brings                  13. Attacks 14. takes back

In the accompaniment of prepositions, some parasmaipadī verbal roots turn into ātmanepadī. Eg. - ji - jayati , vi+ji - vijayate ; mantr- mantrayati, ā+mantra- āmantrayate

Use of Roots with Prepositions

1.pra

pra+artha ->prārthayate ->bhaktaḥ īśvaraṃ mokṣaṃ prārthayate | The devotee prays to God for salvation

pra+sṛ -> prasarati -> kiṃvadantī deśeṣu sarvatra prasarati | Rumours spread everywhere in the land

pra+ vṛtu -> pravarttate ->yantraṃ sadā saśabdaṃ pravarttate | machines always operate noisily

Exercises

I. Separate roots and prepositions in the following -

            pracarati         pracīyate        prabhavati     praṇaśyati     pradadāti

2. parā

parā+ji -> parājayate -> durjanaH sajjanebhyaH parājayate - Evil meets with defeat from the Good

3. sam

sam+kṛ-> saṃskaroti->dharmacintā cittāni saṃskaroti| Ruminating on Dharma, refines the mind

sam+jñā-> sañjānīte-> rājā bhṛtyaṃ sañjānīte | The king discerns the servants

sam +tṛ-> santarati -> dharmiṣṭhaḥ samsārasāgaraṃ sukhena santarati |The righteous crosses easily, the ocean of life.

II Separate roots and prepositions in the following -

          samāpnoti                  saṃgṛhṇāti                sandiśati

4. anu

anu+ās->anvāste-> gurumanvāste śiṣyaḥ - the pupil remains behind the preceptor

anu+iṇ(gatau)->anveti-> candramanuyanti tārakāṇi- The stars follow the moon

III Separate roots and prepositions in the following -

   anunayanti   anusarati    anutiṣṭhati      anugacchati     anubhavati             anubhūyate

5. ava

ava+iṇ(gatau)->aveti-> chātra ācāryādvedaśāstramaveti - pupil gets to know the Science of Vedas from the Preceptor

ava+gamlṛ-> avagacchati-> karttavyaṃ svayamavagacchati sajjanaḥ- The good gets to know his duty by himself

6.nis

nis+kram-> niṣkrāmati -> vṛddhaḥ sanyāsāya gṛhānniṣkrāmati -The old man leaves home for renunciation

7.nir

nir+īkṣ -> nirīkṣate -> ācāryaḥśiṣyāṇāṃ budhikauśalaṃ nirīkṣate - Teacer observes the intelligence of students

nir+gam -> nirgacchati ->nālikāyāḥ jalam nirgacchati - water flows through the tube.

IV Separate roots and prepositions in the following -

            nistarati                      nirākaroti                    nirdiśati

8. dus

dus+citi->duścintayati->adhārmikaḥ sadā duścintayati -The unrighteous thinks evil all the time.

9. dur

dur+vi+ā+hṛñ ->.durvyāharati -> kaṃsaḥ kṛṣṇaṃ prati sadā durvyāharati - Kamsa always misbehaves with kṛṣṇa.

10.vi

vi+āp->vyāpnoti->puṣpagandha udyāne vyāpnoti - Scent of flowere fills the garden

vi+hṛñ-> viharati->bālāḥ krīḍāṅgaṇe viharanti - children roam around the playground.

vi+sad-> viṣīdati->raṇāṅgaṇe arjuno viṣīdati sma- Arjuna became despondent in the battlefield

11.āṅ (ā)

ā+gam-> āgacchati -> bālo:'dhyayanāyavidyālayamāgacchati-Boy comes to school for Learning.

ā+mantra->āmantrayate-> navagṛhapraveśāya mitramāmantrayate - Invites friend for House-warming

ā+mantra->āmantrayate-> videśagamanāvasare svajanamāmantrayate- Takes leave of kith & kin when going abroad

V Separate roots and prepositions in the following -

          viśvasiti          ānayati           āpatati                        ālapati                        ākṣipati

12. ni

ni+pat->nipati-> vṛkṣāt phalaṃ nipati - The fruit falls from the tree.

ni+vas->nivasati->bhaktaḥdevadarśanāya mandire nivasati-Devotee lives in the temple for a glimpse of God.

13. adhi

adhi+kṛñ ->adhikaroti-> dhanamadhikṛtya cintā na kāryā- one should not worry about wealth

adhi+sthā-> adhitiṣṭhati -> kāmadhenuḥ nākamadhitiṣṭhati - The desire-milch cow presides over Heaven

14. api

api+dhā-> apidadhāti - yuvatī mukhaṃ vastreṇāpidadhāti - The young lady covers her face with veil

Note:- The ’a’ of the prepositions "ava" and "api" are optionally dropped. Therefore, the usage "pidadhāti’" is also accepted

15. ati

ati+vaha->ativahati-> rogī mahatā kleśena ativahat i- The sick man carries on with much discomfort.

ati+kram-.atikrāmati-> śatruḥ sīmāmatikrāmati - the enemy transgresses the limit.

16. su

su+vad -> suvadati-> janaiḥ suvadanīyaṃ sadā- people should always speak cordially

su+cint-> sucintayati->kāryaṃ sucintitameva karttavyam- Only well-thought out tasks should be executed.

17. उत्

ut+iṇ-> udeti -> sūryaḥ pūrvasyāṃ diśi udeti -The Sun rises in the East.

ut+tṛ -> uttarati -> janaḥ nadīm uttarati - People cross the River

18. abhi

abhi+artha -> abhyarthayate -> saṅgoṣṭhīsaṃyojakaḥ sadaḥ maunam avasthātum abhyarthayate - The Seminar-co-ordinator requests the gathering to maintain silence.

abhi+dhā ->abhidadhāti-> sā sarvadā sasmitamabhidadhāti- She always addresses people with a smile.

19. prati

prati+jñā ->pratijānīte-> chātrāḥ pratidinaṃ pratijānate-The pupils take the pledge everyday

prati+īkṣ-> pratīkṣate-> sā bhāvini kāle samṛddhaṃ jīvanaṃ pratīkṣate-She expects a prosperous life in the future.

20. pari

pari+car->paricarati->anuvaidyā rugṇaṃ paricarati- the nurse serves the ailing.

pari+nī->pariṇayati-> yuvā suśīlāṃ pariṇayati-The young man marries a well-mannered girl

21. upa

upa+vasa-> upavasati-> ekādaśyāṃ tithau kecicidupavasanti - Some people fast on the eleventh day of the new and full moons

Also, senā vanamupavasati - The armed forces camp near the jungle.

22. apa

apa+vad->apavadati->durjanaḥ sādhujanamapavadati-The wicked slander the good

apa+sṛ->apasarati-> sajjanaḥ durjanādapasarati-The good move away from the evil.

rakṣāpuruṣaiḥ->rakṣāpuruṣaiḥ rājñaḥ pathaḥ janā apasāryante- The people are made to move away from the king's path by the guards

VI Separate roots and prepositions in the following -

          adhivasati      adhigacchati             utpatati           abhisarati       pratīkṣate

            parīkṣate        upekṣate                    upadiśati        palāyate         prārthayate

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