Expanding the Sanskrit Namespace.. Taddita prakaraNa

Generating Nouns from Nouns!

Sujatha Ratnala
6 min readMay 1, 2023

In our familiar map of words are verbs, nouns, compound words, and their various avtaars.

There waits a SURPRISE! Tadditas are nouns derived from nouns!

Let us get a sense of tadditas in English.
Here are some base words.. india, sun, neibhor, citizen, tall.
And we have these derived words.. indian, solar, neighborhood, citizenship, taller

Taddita literally means tad hita.. that which works in its favor and expansion. The recipes add an X factor..

And the taddita forms are very familiar and widely used in the forest of Indian Languages. Let’s uncover the veil of hidden order! No rules.. No new vocabulary.. Only illustrations!

And I promise.. if You are interested in Indian Scriptures or Classical Music, this simple knowledge will hone your vocabulary.


What is the X factor?

Newer scopes of Nouns are churned using different recipes. Like bauddha from buddha.. dhanvaan from dhan.. satvA from sat.. tejOmaya from tejas..

Alright.. A small map showcasing the power of the recipes.. By adding a tiny affix at the end of the base noun, it can bring out the newer spectrum of words with these meanings

Descendant of X
Derivative of X
Doer of X
Related or Belongs to X

Possessing X
Filled with X
Endowed with X

Superlative of X
Like X

Numerical expansion of X
Pronoun expansion of X
Feminine extension of X

‘descendant of’.. ‘product of’..

Lets take a few iconic personalities and see the coinage of vocabulary to denote their offspring/ their descendants/ products.

Look at the vowel stretch in these derived words.

buddha => bauddha {related to buddha}
vasisTa => vAsisTa {derived from VasisTa}
shiva => shaivA {related to shiva}
vasudeva => vAsudeva {offspring of vasudeva}
dhrutarastra => dhartrurashtra

In the below words, examine the vowel stretch and the tiny affix added at the end of the word.

janaka => jAnaki {offspring of Janaka}
drupad => draupadi
sumitra => saumitri {lakshman, son of Sumitra}

ganga => gAngeya {offspring of Ganga}
vrushna =>vArshneya {descendant of vrushna}

kuru => kaurava {offspring of kuru}
pandu => paandava {offspring of pandu}

related to.. ya factor

We have seen a few illustrations of famous personalities and their offspring. We now move to another kind of “related to”.

sat {existence} => satya {relating to existence.. truth}
danta {tooth} => dantya {related to tooth.. dental}
veera {hero} => veerya {related to hero.. heroism}
rājan {king} => rājya {relating to king.. kingdom}

related to.. Eya factor.. ik factor

Another set of common noun extensions

bhArat => bhAratEya {related to / belongs to bhArat}
shAstra => shAstrEya {related to scriptures}

nagar => nAgarik {related to nagar => citizen}
bhUta => bhautik {related to elements => physical}
dharma => dhArmik {religious}
lokA => laukik {worldly}
vaarshik, maasik, dainik {yearly, monthly, daily}

Doer of.. ka factor

lekh => lekhaka {write => writer}
paaT => paaTaka {read => student}
gAyaka {song => singer}
vidhushaka {entertain => entertainer}

The Quality of X.. The X ness “tva” factor

These are common examples of abstract nouns and emphasize the quality factor and element factor..

tat => tatva {element}

matru => matrutvam {motherhood}
bhratru => bratrutvam {brotherhood}
nrupa => nrupatvam {kinghood}
vidwat => vidwatvam {scholarship}

Chanakya’s quote goes by.. “Never compare scholarship and kinghood”

vidwatvam cha nrupatvam cha naiva tulyam kadachan
swadweshe pujyate raja.. vidwana sarvatra pujyate

Another verse from Shankaracharya’s Shivananda Lahari.

Does it matter which form I assume? As long as I meditate on you
naratvam {manliness}
devatvam {divinity}
naga-vana-mrugatvam {wilderness}
pashutvam {animalhood?}
keeTatvam {insecthood?}

Gita spells out the definition of Yoga.

Yoga calls for Equipoise and Balance
samatvam uchyate Yoga

Endowed with.. vaan/vati, maan/mati

It is common to find girl names ending with ‘vati’. Only now do I understand where it comes from?

Nouns ending with ‘a’ have vat/vati/vaan endings

kalA => kalAvati {endowed with intelligence}
prabhA => prabhavati {filled with radiance}
roopa => roopavati {endowed with a good shape}
gunavati / gunavaaN
dhanavati / dhanavaan
bhagavaan / bhagavati / bhagavat {3 genders}

Nouns not ending with ‘a’ have maan/mati/mat endings

shakti => shaktimaan/shaktimati {endowed with shakti}
buddhi => buddhimaan / buddhimati {endowed with buddhi}
hanu => hanumaan {having big jaws}
bhanu => bhAnumati {filled with light}

The above are examples of matup/vatup pratyaya.

Filled with.. ‘maya’ factor

Bhakta Ramadasa sings.. Antha RAmamayam.. Jagam antha rAmamayam.. This world is resonating with RAma..

Likewise, we have


In the Upanishads, Young Brigu is in pursuit of ‘Who am I’ and seeks the answer after intense contemplation.

The 5 layers of our existence at the physical, prana, mental, intellectual, and bliss level..

annamaya pranamaya manomaya vignanamaya anandamaya
annamaya {filled with matter}
pranamaya {filled with breath}
manomaya {filled with mind}
vignanamaya {filled with discretion}
anandamaya {filled with bliss}

Other common words are

chinmaya, tanmaya {filled with chit}
hiranmaya {filled with gold}

The ‘ta’ factor.. filled with

This recipe also has the meaning ‘filled with’. The derived words are feminine. Thats the difference.

sundar => sundartA {beauty}
chatur => chaturtA {intelligence}
murka => murkatA {foolishness}
eka => ekatA {oneness}
aneka => anekatA{diversity}

The Superlative Wars.. tar tam factor

Now we switch to another interesting category. English too has this concept of superlatives. high higher highest

Ucch ucchatar ucchatam
guru gurutar gurutam
priya priyatar priyatam
guhya guhyatar guhyatam

In chapter 18 of Gita, Krishna tells Arjuna about what He has told so far, and what He is about to tell.

Hence the deeper knowledge has been expounded by me
iti te jñānam .. guhyataraṁ mayā

Now listen to the deepest knowledge which I shall speak
sarva-guhyatamaṁ ..śhṛiṇu me paramaṁ vachaḥ

Bheeshma to Yudhistira in Vishnu Sahasranamam

In my opinion, this is the Highest Dharma of all Dharmas
Eshame sarva dharmanam.. dharm-adhikatamo matha,

He is Guru.. He is the Supreme Guru.. He is the Supreme Abode
Guruh Gurutamah Dhama 23

Hei s ancient.. He is most ancient
Sanaat Sanatanatamah 96

Like X

There is another pratyaya that also lands the words in ‘vat’. Meaning ‘like that’ ‘similar in action’.

Shankaracharya’s Atmabodha has quite a few of these illustrations.

Like fire which is the primary cause for cooking
paakasya vahni-vat

Like light removes darkness

Mistaking a Rope for a Snake
rajju sarpa-vat

Like As a Lamp Illumines Objects:
deepah ghata aadi vat

As Perishable as Bubbles
budbuda-vat ksharam.

These are examples of वति-प्रत्यय.(5|1|115).

The Pronoun Expansion

From the pronouns ‘yat’, ‘tat’ et al, several newer forms are churned.

yaavat, taavat, kiyat {notion of quantity.. as much}
yadaa, tadaa, ekadaa {notion of time}
yathaa, tathaa {notion of manner/quality}
yatra, tatra {notion of place}

Numerical Expansion

dwidhA {twofold}
tridhA {threefold}

Deriving Feminine forms.. Stree Pratyaya

Let's peep through some common feminine forms that have been extended from masculine nouns.

ashwa ashwA
bAlah => bAlA

gaayak => gaayika
lehkak => lekhika
naayak => naayika

kumar kumari
taruN taruNi
kaamin kaamini
manasvin manasvini

indra indrANi
shiva shivAni
brahma brahmAni
rudra rudrANi
bhava bhavAnI

From the Arti song ‘Om Jai Ambe Gauri’

brahmANI rudrANI.. तुम कमला रानी

A Telugu Song

ShivANI.. BhavANI.. sharvANI..

I found this topic of taddita very interesting.. Kind of a High School Hindi vocabulary, and yet there is so much order into it. Words have a story to tell and sometimes I behold and write their tales. I hope you have enjoyed learning something about this topic.

I have put a very simplistic view of the topic. I heard an interesting talk on this topic by Dr Sowmya Krishnapur. The diversity, creative prowess and building blocks of literature are the tadditas and span more than 70%. And they are used widely in Indian languages as is. There are many many taddita pratyayas, and that the mappings are quite complex and not 1 to 1 in many cases.

A quick recap and Vishwaroopa on the Words and where to Tadditas belong. Skip this section if you do not know/want to know about affixes at this point of time.

There are 2 parts to any word. Stem + Affix. There are 2 kinds of Stems. Dhatus for verbs and Pratipadikams for nouns.

There are 7 kinds of affixes.

I have heard that Panini has arranged the Sutras into Stems, Affixes and Recipes for generating different forms..

While Vikarana pratyaya expand the dhatus, the Tin pratyaya land them in various tenses and lakaaras and the spinning of the Verbs

The Noun stems land into Vibhakti forms with sup pratyaya.

The krut pratyaya helps in converting Verb roots into Noun forms.. Like Gerunds.

The san-aadi pratyayas help in adding special extensions of verbs.

And the tadditas and stree pratyayas help in generating and increasing the Scope of Nouns from Nouns.



Dr Sowmya Krishnapur

High School Grammar made easy: Vyoma Patashala

Mapping English Affixes with Tadditas

Nominal Stems



Sujatha Ratnala

I write.. I weave.. I walk.. कवयामि.. वयामि.. यामि.. Musings on Patterns, Science, Linguistics, Sanskrit et al..