KHYATA KARNATAKA VRUTTA
‘Khyata Karnataka Vrutta’ (KyAta karnATka vrutta) (ಖ್ಯಾತ ಕರ್ನಾಟಕ ವೃತ್ತಗಳು) refers to the six famous Sanskrit prosodic forms that are borrowed in to Kannada and used extensively by the poets who composed ‘Champu Kavyas’. These six forms were preferred because they suited the native genius of the language at that particular point of time in the history of Kannada language what with the preponderance of Sanskrit words in literary Kannada.
‘Akshara Vrutta’ is a poetic stanza containing four lines, each of them having an identical number of letters arranged in a particular pattern. This pre determined pattern is called ‘aksharagaNa vinyAsa’. Eight ‘akshara gana’s and an additional ‘laghu’ or ‘guru’ contribute to the structure of each line. Once a poem is constructed using similar combinations of akshara ganas in all the four lines, the recitation of the poem also becomes pre-determined. Consequently every akshara vrutta has its own melody and a mode of rendering unique to it. This uniqueness equips it to communicate different emotions. Hence each one of the ‘Khyata Karnataka Vruttas’ has its own emotional range and melodic grandeur.
‘campakamAlA’, ‘utpalamalaa’, ‘matteBa vikrIDita’, ‘shArdUla vikrIDita’, ‘sragdharA’ and ‘mahAsragdharA’ constitute the six famous vruttas used profusely in Kannada. The patterns of letters associated with them are as follows:
1. campakamAlA (ಚಂಪಕಮಾಲಾ): ನ.ಜ.ಭ.ಜ.ಜ.ಜ.ರ
ಕುಲಮ/ನೆಮುನ್ನ/ಮುಗ್ಗಡಿ/ಪಿರೇಂ ಗ/ಡಾ ನಿಮ್ಮ /ಕುಲಂಗ/ಳಾಂತು ಮಾರ್/
2. utpalamAlA (ಉತ್ಪಲಮಾಲಾ): ಭ.ರ.ನ.ಭ.ಭ.ರ.ಲಘು.ಗುರು
ಪೋದ ಭ/ವಂಗಳಂ/ನೆನೆವಿ/ನಂ ಗಗ/ನಾಂತರ/ದಲ್ಲಿ ಸೂ/ರ್ಯ/ಯುಗ್/
3. mattEBa vikrIDita(ಮತ್ತೇಭ ವಿಕ್ರೀಡಿತÀ: ಸ.ಭ.ರ.ನÀ.ಮ.ಯ.ಲಘು.ಗುರು
ಇದು ದೇ/ವೇಂದ್ರನಿ/ವಾಸಮೆ/ನ್ನ ನೆಲೆ/ಯುಂ ಶ್ರೀ ಶ್ರೀ/ಪ್ರಭಂ ಮುಂ/ದೆ/ನಿಂ
4. shArdUla vikrIDita(ಶಾರ್ದೂಲವಕ್ರೀಡಿತÀ): ಮ.ಸ.ಜ.ಸ.ತ.ತ.ಗುರು
ಶ್ರೀದೇವೇಂ/ದ್ರಮುನೀಂ/ದ್ರವಂದಿ/ತಗುಣ/ವ್ರಾತಂ ಜ/ಗತ್ಸ್ವಾಮಿ/ ಸಂ/
5. sragdharA(sಸ್ರಗ್ಧರಾ): ಮ.ರ.ಭ.ನ.ಯ.ಯ.ಯ
ಹಾರಾಂಶು/ಸ್ವಚ್ಛ ನೀ/ರಂ ಸುರ/ಯುವತಿ/ಮುಖಾಂಭೋ/ಜ ನೇತ್ರೋ/ತ್ಪಳಶ್ರೀ
6. mahA sragdharA(ಮಹಾಸ್ರಗ್ಧರಾ): ಸ.ತ.ತ.ನ.ಸ.ರ.ರ.ಗುರು
ಅಲಕಂ/ಮಂದಾರ/ಶೂನ್ಯಂ ಕ/ದಪು ಮ/ಕರಿಕಾ/ಪತ್ರಶೂ/ನ್ಯಂ ಲಲಾ/ಟಂ
Suitable examples from Kannada classics are provided for each of the six vruttas. Even here, camakamAlA and utpalamAlA vruttas are used much more frequently than the rest. SragdharA and mahAsragdharA are relatively in frequent. Some poets seem to have a soft corner for some of these vruttas. Some scholars have tried to link these six vruttas with the prosodic forms composed in ‘amshagana chandassu not with any appreciable degree of success.
These vruttas could not survive the change from old Kannada (haLagannaDa) to medieval Kannada (naDugannaDa). The shifting of the emphasis from ‘aksharagaNa chandassu’ to mAtrA gaNa chandassu’ had its share in the disappearance of these prosodic patterns. The Champu Kavyas composed later sound slightly verbose and artificial. The gradual erosion of the gamaka tradition and the lacunae that have arisen in our pedagogy are partly responsible for this situation. However a proper rendering of these vruttas are mandatory for a comprehensive analysis of old Kannada classics.