Language and Literature •

 Assamese is the primary language of Assam. It is recognised by the constitution as one of the statutory languages of India. Assamese is basically an Aryan Language, yet the non-Aryan languages that were here since time immemorial has also contributed to the enrichment of it. River names, place names, pronunciation of many other words etc. are influenced by the non-Aryan languages. Apart from the non-Aryan lan-guages the Magadhi, Prakrit, Tribal languages, English, Span-ish. Arabic etc. too have contributed to the overall develop-ment of the Assamese language. The influence of English is distinctly seen in the formation of many of the words in Assamese language. The Assamese language took its form around 10t, cen-tury AD after undergoing various changes from the original the of the Aryan community, that is, Sanskrit. Towards tremendous t century, Assam had already witnessed Lue end of the 18 tre spheres. The ransformation in political, economic and social later in he British took over Assam in 1826 and ten years oga1r8W36iththreeligAmerican Baptist Missionaries arrived in religious motives.

Spoken Assamese and published Assamese grammar anglo assamese dictionary and the first Assamese journal published in 1846). Thus it was due to efforts of these  Amencan Baptist Missionaries that Assamese as used- in and around Sivasagar and other districts of Upper assam gained respect throughout the State. The other languages being in use in Assam are . English Hindi Bengali, Bodo, Karbi, Mising, Rabha, Deuri, Nepali arad others. Assamese is the official language of the State under the provisionsof the Official Language Act. 1960. The year 1979 was observed as the ‘Official Language Year’ to make sure the full implementation of the Act in the States official and other circles.

• Literature Oral Literature :The beginning of Assamese literature, specially the oral literature, can be traced in the lokageets or folk songs Lokageets in Assamese are generally called Naam. In most of the cases Geet and Naams are synony-mous. Among the Assamese tokageets or folk songs Biyanaam, Aarnaam, Gossai Naam, Bhekuli Biyar Naam, Dhat Naam etc_ are prominent. Other Popular lokageets are Phulkonwar-Monikonwarar Geet, Naharar Geet, Badan Barphukanat Geet, Jikir and Jan, Dehbichar Geet, Tokari Geet, Mohoho Geet, Jona Gabharur Geet, Sant! Baramahir ‘Geet, Bon Ghosa, Maniram Dewanar Geet, Joymati Konwarir Geet etc. The composition of these Geets, Naams or folk songs dates from around en century to 8th-9th century AD. according to historians. are Paranoaivachan and Phakara-Jojana (Sayings and Proverbs) literature. another important inclusion in the Assamese verbal The various sayings are associated with a person named Daak, which are said to be the most ancient variety of Aseamese verbal literature. There is controversy regarding of a person called Daak Whatever fact may the reality these sayings are remarkable be. their easily understandable content These pravachans include a van-ety of subjects like agriculture, weather, ayurvedic, politics and all relevant matters that are important in life They m concern the affairs of daily life and advise us onehowaoinnley should lead one’s life. They are famous for their tremendous power of expression The Phakara-Jojana (Proverbs) are regarded as equivalent of the pravachans. The basic concept of the phakara-jojana is ‘the wisdom of many and the wit of one Most of them are spontaneous, and are created as and when the situation demands The phakaras are rhythmic and full of meaning jojanas are in couplets, where one line is added to another to make the line complete Words are used intelligently and with clarity in all these pravachans and phakara-jojanas.

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