Criteria For Classical Language

New category of languages as `Classical Languages' was created by Government of India, and the following criteria were laid down to determine the eligibility of languages to be considered for classification as a `Classical Language':-

i) High antiquity of its early texts/recorded history over a period of 1500-2000 years.

ii) A body of ancient literature/texts, which is considered a valuable heritage by generations of speakers.

iii) The literary tradition be original and not borrowed from another speech community.

iv) The classical language and literature being distinct from modern, there may also be a discontinuity between the classical language and its later forms or its offshoots.

Only two languages, viz. Tamil & Sanskrit have been declared as `Classical language'.

The Government of Karnataka and several other organizations have represented to declare Kannada as a classical language. These requests were forwarded to the Sahitya Akademi for the consideration of the committee of Linguistic Experts.

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