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Glimpses of Konknni in Roman Script

Last Updated: 16 February '09

Article published in SOD 13

Glimpses of Konknni in Roman Script

 Pratap Naik, S.J.
Thomas Stephens Konknni Kendr
Alto Porvorim, Goa

     First printing press in India was brought to St. Paul College, at present day Old Goa by the Jesuit missionaries. Between 1556 to 1561 "Doutrina Christam", a catechism book in Konknni in Roman script was printed.

     One would expect that Hindus from Goa were the first people to write and publish Konknni books in Nagari script. The reality is quite different. The credit to write and publish the first Konknni book in Nagari script goes to a Catholic of Goan origin.  Dr. George Octaviano Pires published "Kristanv Doton ani Katisism" at Sholapur in 1894.

     The first book in Konknni in Nagari script by a Hindu was written by Varde Vaman Valaulikar (alias Shennoi Gõybab). His "Gõykarancho Mumboikar" was published by Gomantak Press, Bombay in 1910. It has 69 pages.  Valaulikar began his Konknni literature mission through Roman script. He has written 15 Konknni books in Roman script. If he had believed Nagari script as the ‘natural' script of Konknni why did he did not begin to write Konknni in it?   His Konknni books in Roman script are as follows:
Akbar Patxea ani Birbal. Bombay: L.M.Furtado & Co. 1902.
Bakaulechem Ful. Bombay: L.M.Furtado & Co. 1902.
Razput Hamlet ani Bapaichem Bhut. 1908
Gõykarancho Mumboikar. Bombay: L.M.Furtado & Co. 1910.
Gore Bailecho Callo Ghov. Bombay: L.M.Furtado & Co. 1912.
Mogachem Logn. Bombay: L.M.Furtado & Sons. 1914.
Ghatmaro Ixtt. Bombay: L.M.Furtado & Co. 1915
Mudiam Khatir Ghova Bailechem Zhogddem.
Dhuvanchi Porikxa.
Zunvllea Bhanvacho Ghuspa-godoll. 1914.
Agul'leachem Nivollonn. 1914.
Ranniechem Jivem Bavlem. 1914.
Bailechi Porikxa.
Mogache Piddechem Okhod.
Bhusmare Alebhav-Kolebhav.

     The first Konknni vocabulary and Konknni Grammar in Roman script were ready by 1570. They were used to teach Konknni at St. Paul college.

      In 1830s Manddo came into existence in Salcette, Goa.

     In 1889 February 02, Eduardo Jose Bruno de Souza started the first Konknni periodical in Roman script "Udentechem Sallok" in Pune.

     17 April 1892 the first Tiatr "Italian Bhurgo of Lucasinho Ribeiro was staged in Mumbai. Today Tiatr has become one of the most successful entertainment industry.

     The first Konknni novel "Kristanv Ghorabo" was completed on 31 July 1905 by Eduardo J. Bruno de Souza. It was printed in 1911.

     On 24th April 1950, the first full-length Konknni film "Mogacho Aunddo" produced by Mr. Jerry Braganza was released at Mapuça.  "Amchem Noxib", "Nirmonn", Sukhachem Soponn", "Bhunyarantlo Monis" and "Padri" film producers were from Konknni in Roman script users.

     In Sept 1962 Konknni Bhasha Mandal, Goa was started in Margão by Pedro Correia-Afonso of Benaulim.

 

Bibliography:

Kelekar, Ravindra. 1963. A Bibliography of Konkani Literature. Goa: Gomant Bharati.

Pereira, Antonio S.J. 1982. The Makers of Konkani Literature. Pilar, Goa: By the author

Naik, Pratap S.J. 2005. ‘Romi lipi ani ticho fuddar' in SOD 8. Thomas Stephens Konknni Kendr, Alto Porvorim.  Pp. 72-84.



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