Nepali is a mixture of three important languages: the language spoken in the western part, the eastern part, and the local folk language.
Apart from this, the local language is a little different from the royal communities and the people that belong to the affluent communities. The language is almost two and a half centuries old. Sanskrit is the main language from which Nepali took its origins from. The script used for writing purposes is the Devanagari script.
UPSC Mains Nepali Syllabus Paper – I
Answers must be written in Nepali.
1. History of the origin and development of Nepali as one of the new Indo-Aryan Languages
2. Fundamentals of Nepali Grammar and phonology:
(i) Nominal forms and categories :-
Gender, Number, Case, Adjectives, Pronouns, Avyayas
(ii) Verbal forms and categories-
Tense, Aspects, Voice, Roots and Fixes
(iii) Nepali Swara and Vyanjana;
3. Major Dialects of Nepali
4. Standardisation and Modernisation of Nepali with special reference to language movements (viz. Halanta Bahiskar, Jharrovad etc.)
5. Teaching of Nepali language in India-Its history and development with special reference to its socio-cultural aspects.
1. History of Nepali literature with special reference to its development in India.
2. Fundamental concepts and theories of literature :
Kavya/Sahitya, Kavya Prayojan, Literary genres, Shabda Shakti, Rasa, Alankara, Tragedy, Comedy, Aesthetics, Stylistics.
3. Major literary trends and movements-
Swachchhandatavad, Yatharthavad, Astitwavad, Ayamik Movement, Contemporary Nepali writings, Postmodernism.
4. Nepali folklores (the following folk-form only)- Sawai, Jhyaurey, Selo, Sangini, Lahari.
IAS candidates who are targeting UPSC Exam may check the linked article.
UPSC Mains Nepali Syllabus Paper – II
Answers must be written in Nepali.
This paper will require first hand reading of the texts prescribed below and questions will be designed to test the candidate’s critical acumen.
1. Santa Jnandil Das-Udaya Lahari
2. Lekhnath Poudyal-Tarun Tapasi
(Vishrams III, V, VI, XII, XV, XVIII only)
3. Agam Singh Giri-Jaleko Pratibimba : Royeko Pratidhwani (The following poems only-rasawako Chichy-ahat-sanga Byunjheko Ek Raat, Chhorolai, Jaleko Pratibimba : Royeko Prati-dhwani, Hamro Akashmani Pani Hunchha Ujyalo, Tihar).
4. Haribhakta Katuwal-Yo Zindagi Khai Ke Zindagi : (The following poems only – Jeevan : Ek Dristi, Yo Zindagi Khai Ke Zindagi, Akashka tara Ke Tara, Hamilai Nirdho Nasamjha, Khai Many-ata Yahan Atmahutiko Balidan Ko).
5. Balkrishna Sama-Prahlad
6. Manbahadur Mukhia-Andhyaroma Banchneharu (The following One-Act plays only-‘Andhyaroma Banchneharu’, ‘Suskera’).
1. Indra Sundas-Sahara
2. Lilbahadur Chhetri-Brahmaputrako Chheuchhau
3. Rupnarayan Sinha-Katha Navaratna (The following stories only-Biteka Kura, Jimmewari Kasko, Dhanamatiko Cinema-Swapna, Vidhwasta Jeevan).
4. Indrabahadur Rai-Vipana Katipaya (The following stories only-Raatbhari Huri Chalyo, Jayamaya Aphumatra Lekha-pani Aipugi, Bhagi, Ghosh Babu, Chhutyaiyo).
5. Sanu Lama-Katha Sampad (The following stories only-Swasni Manchhey, Khani Tarma Ekdin, Phurbale Gaun Chhadyo, Asinapo Manchhey).
6. Laxmi Prasad Devkota-Laxmi Nibandha Sangraha (The following essays only-Sri Ganeshaya Namah, Nepali Sahityako Itihasma Sarvashrestha Purus, Kalpana, Kala Ra Jeevan, Gadha Buddhiman Ki Guru?)
7. Ramkrishna Sharma-Das Gorkha (The following essays only-Kavi, Samaj Ra Sahitya, Sahityama Sapekshata, Sahityik Ruchiko Praudhata, Nepali Sahityako Pragati).
Also, Check Other Optional Subject’s Syllabus
More about the Nepali Language
Nepali is the official language of the country of Nepal. It is also popularly known as Parbatiya and Gorkhali language. In India, Nepal is a popular language in the north eastern parts and also the states of Sikkim, Assam. It is a commonly spoken language is Darjeeling.
The language is also spoken in sparse populations in West Bengal, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. The royal family of Nepal has held high patronage for spreading the language and popularizing it. Hence we can find that Nepali has a very diversified and rich cultural background to it.
Poems, stories, novels, folklores etc are very popular elements of Nepali language. The language is so popular that some of the foreign universities in the US and UK teach this language to prospective students. World renowned poets and literati are famous from the Nepali language and they have contributed immensely to the growth and promotion of the language.
Some of the noteworthy names of Nepali literature are Laxmi Prasad Devkota, Lekhnath Poudel, Madhav Prasad Ghimire, Guru Prasad Mainali etc. Nepali belongs to the Indo Aryan group of languages. It is also listed as an official language in the eight schedule of the constitution of India. Nepali is very synonymous with the Maithili language as it shows same trajectory of growth alongside the language. Since it is also considered a Pahari group of language, the grammatical contexts vary from region. The
Sinja valley in Jhumla is the region that is believed to be the origin of modern Nepali. Nepali literature became more popular around the 19th century. Until then people were hardly acquainted with the composition part of the language.
Most of the works were in oral formations. Adhyatma Ramayana was the first such elaborate literary work in Nepali that acted as a pre cursor to the beginning of a great and magnificent literary journey in the language. Much of the progress and development in the literary circle is attributed to three famous gems of Nepali language mainly Lekhnath Paudyal, Laxmi Prasad Devkota and Balkrishna Sama.
Not just in the mainland of Nepal, Nepali had developed fondness and liking outside its native country. It was in India particularly in the regions of Darjeeling and Varanasi that developed many notable writers in Nepali. Darjeeling even to this day has many writers in the Nepali language and the country of Nepal is indebted to the writing community outside its own country who have contributed fantastically to their native world of Nepali literature.
Around 30, 00,000 and more population in India speak this language. Around 40% of the population in the native country of Nepal use the language as their local language. It is believed by linguists that the language in its most ancient form had references and similarities with the Punjabi and Sindhi languages.
The most epic and ancient forms of literature mainly Manusmriti, Rajatarangini and the Puranas have a significant and important mention to the language in various parts of the scripture. These texts are of great spiritual and religious importance till date in our country and date back to the time when the first inscriptions were formed. King Asoka also has inscribed on his coins in the Nepali language and the proof to this context can be found near the inscriptions in Bodh Gaya.
Coming down from the era of kings and rulers, the language bore a more modern and reformed architecture around 500 years ago. The language at this time period was not amongst the elite rulers of state, but in the heart of local population that cultivated rice and employed itself in agricultural occupations for their livelihood. With the transition of such groups from one place to the, the language also reached different parts, especially the north eastern parts of the Indian subcontinent.
Through this journey, the language also developed a host of dialects that had direct reference with the main language form. So in the course of its journey the language got attached with various language influences such as Sanskrit, Bengali, Maithili, Hindi etc. The language grew in abundance and spread to different parts not just in the north eastern part of India mainly through the Gorkha community. The Gorkha are believed to be the quintessential Nepali speaking community till date.
Nepali language got acclaimed as the national language of Nepal only in the year 1958. In the initial days when Nepali was not a language famous in the written form, it most attracted plays in the folk language. The written form of the language was more restricted to the upper caste Brahmins who had an upper hand when it came to education and knowledge in society. So the verbal form was readily accepted by the folk communities which understood the language easily. They related to the plays which mostly evolved around village lives, their settlements, occupations and lives.
Of late Nepali literature has found admirers and takers from not just the cult Nepali community, but outside of that too. This can be well understood by the fact that various forms of literature are emerging and being published all over the world across different cross cultures. Diaspora in the event of writing has gained momentum in the language and it really has a long way to go before a trend or phenomenon is created for the legacy of the language form.
In the context of grammatical details, it’s very interesting to note that the language has 11 vowels and 33 consonants. Consonants are mainly influenced by the Sanskrit language. Another thing to note is that there is hardly any difference in the phonology aspects between different dialects of the language.
Three important dialects officially accepted in Nepali are eastern, western and central. The language is spoken in a different manner in the heartland of Nepal and in other local forms in other south Asian countries especially India. Long vowels and nasalized vowels are the speciality of the language. The script is alternatively considered as a direct transliteration from many
Indian scripts though not completely proved.
Some of the most famous local forms of the language include Achchami, Bheri, Darchuli, Humli and Soradi. Many other languages that are phonetically similar with the main form of Nepali language have also been clubbed under the same category.