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Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & Ranked

Until you’ve consumed all of the best Sanskrit Learning books, can you even claim to be a true fan?

Complete Sanskrit speak and understand a new language (Teach Yourself) (2014)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedDesigned for complete beginners, and tested for years with real learners, offers a bridge from the textbook to the real world, enabling you to learn the grammar, understand the vocabulary and even how to translate the inscriptions and texts from this ancient and religiously significant Indian language.
Author(s): Michael Coulson

The Cambridge Introduction to Sanskrit (2017)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedIdeal for courses in beginning Sanskrit or self-study, this textbook employs modern, tried-and-tested pedagogical methods and tools, but requires no prior knowledge of ancient languages or linguistics. Devanāgarī script is introduced over several chapters and used in parallel with transliteration for several chapters more, allowing students to progress in learning Sanskrit itself while still mastering the script.
Author(s): A. M. Ruppel

Sanskrit For Beginners (Cornell Workbook): An Adaptable Journal To Practice Learning Sanskrit Phrases, Alphabet, Grammar and Translations (2018)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedThis would make the ideal adaptable notebook for those seeking to learn the Sanskrit language. The workbook contains a customised, glossy front cover and 108 pages of blank 8.5 x 11 inch Cornell note paper, the perfect size for plenty of note writing space. The Cornell note taking system is designed to provide a methodical and accessible format for writing and organising notes.
Author(s): StudyGo Official

Sanskrit Alphabet (Devanagari) Study Book Volume 1 Single letters (English and Sanskrit Edition) (2015)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedThis series of two books is designed for the systematic learning of Devanagari, the alphabet script generally used for written Sanskrit. By completing the study of these two books, one may be able to read and write Sanskrit words and sentences adequately. This first book of the series covers all of the letters in the Sanskrit alphabet. Pronunciation, a guided handwriting practice area with the order of writing strokes, and word examples are provided for each letter.
Author(s): Brni Medha Michika

Yogavataranam: The Translation of Yoga: A New Approach to Sanskrit, Integrating Traditional and Academic Methods and Based on Classic Yoga Texts, for University Courses, Yoga Programs, and Self Study (2015)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedThe traditional Indian method of learning Sanskrit is through oral transmission, by first memorizing texts and then learning their meaning. The Western academic approach methodically teaches the alphabet, declensions, grammar, syntax, and vocabulary building.
Author(s): Zoë Slatoff-Ponté, Ben Ponté

A Crash Course to Learn the Devanagari Script: Used for Hindi, Marathi, and Sanskrit Languages (Setubandh Language Series) (Volume 3) (2013)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedThis is the second edition of our highly acclaimed first one. This edition is almost three times as large, with lot more opportunities to practice what is learned, and with more in-depth explanation of concepts and nuances involved. This edition is presented as a Programmed Text to make sure that the student grasps the idea before going ahead with a poorly understood concept or entity.
Author(s): Shah M.D., Bharat S

Devavanipravesika: An Introduction to the Sanskrit Language (1999)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedPresents the facts of Sanskrit language primarily as they show themselves in use in literature, and only secondarily as they laid down by the native grammarians.
Author(s): Robert P. Goldman

Enjoyable Sanskrit Grammar Volume 1 Workbook (2016)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedThis book is the revision of the book “Sanskrit Grammar for Vedanta Students”. This series provides basic Sanskrit grammar which is sufficient to allow the student to read slokas and commentaries on Bhagavad Gita. I changed the title to “Enjoyable Sanskrit Grammar” because the more I teach the more I find that the impediment in learning Sanskrit is not intellectual, but psychological.
Author(s): Medha Michika

Awakening with Sanskrit: Introduction to the Sacred Language of Yoga (2019)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedAwakening with Sanskrit: Introduction to the Sacred Language of Yoga chronicles an autobiography of a yogi who discovers a way out of grief—within her own voice. Having survived a near-death experience at 16, Dr. Katy Jane traveled to Nepal where she heard the Vedas in Sanskrit for the first time. Learning to chant the Sanskrit alphabet awakened her to the goal of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras (samadhi)and gave her a daily spiritual practice that leads to effortless transcendental meditation.
Author(s): Dr. Katy Jane

Enjoyable Sanskrit Grammar Volume 1 Basic Structure of the Language (2016)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedThis book is the revision of the book “Sanskrit Grammar for Vedanta Students”. This series provides basic Sanskrit grammar which is sufficient to allow the student to read slokas and commentaries on Bhagavad Gita. I changed the title to “Enjoyable Sanskrit Grammar” because the more I teach the more I find that the impediment in learning Sanskrit is not intellectual, but psychological.
Author(s): Medha Michika

Sanskrit Grammar (Dover Language Guides) (2003)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedAs Latin is key to the study of Western classics, so Sanskrit is the gateway to understanding ancient Indian literature.
Author(s): William Dwight Whitney

Sanskrit Alphabet (Devanagari) Study Book Volume 2 Conjunct consonants & Exercises on mantras and slokas (Sanskrit Edition) (2015)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedThis series of two books is designed for the systematic learning of Devanagari, the alphabet script generally used for written Sanskrit. By completing the study of these two books, one may be able to read and write Sanskrit words and sentences adequately. This second book covers conjunct consonants and contains exercises on verses of prayers.
Author(s): Medha Michika

Varna Shiksha: The Qualities, Colors, Genders and Devatas of the Letters of the Sanskrit Alphabet (2015)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedVarna Shiksha describes the qualities, colors, genders and Devatas of the 50 letters of the Sanskrit alphabet, and the unique and profound benefits of speaking the different letters of Sanskrit. This ancient text shows that every letter of the Sanskrit alphabet is a particle of infinity, a treasure of knowledge and organizing power.
Author(s): Dr. Peter F Freund

Indo-European Cognate Dictionary (2018)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedA new type of dictionary. An indispensable reference for language learners within the Indo-European language family, as well as for any who love words and want to deepen their understanding of English, or any of these other languages. This dictionary records words from 32 languages, covering eight of the nine living branches of the Indo-European language ‘tree’.
Author(s): McPherson PhD, Fiona

Dictionary of Sanskrit Names (2002)

 Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & RankedThis long-awaited dictionary provides an extensive list of ancient, beautiful Sanskrit names, along with their significance and spiritual meanings. Numerous references to the classical scriptures of India are included to help in research and further study of a name.
Author(s): Integral Yoga Institute

Best Sanskrit Learning Books Reviewed & Ranked

We highly recommend you to buy all paper or e-books in a legal way, for example, on Amazon. But sometimes it might be a need to dig deeper beyond the shiny book cover. Before making a purchase, you can visit resources like Library Genesis and download some sanskrit learning books mentioned below at your own risk. Once again, we do not host any illegal or copyrighted files, but simply give our visitors a choice and hope they will make a wise decision.

Please note that this booklist is not absolute. Some books are absolutely hot items according to Washington Post, others are drafted by unknown authors. On top of that, you can always find additional tutorials and courses on Coursera, Udemy or edX, for example. Are there any other relevant resources you could recommend? Leave a comment if you have any feedback on the list.

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