The aim of this article is to present the development of literary Hindi prose in the nineteenth century. The authoress begins with reference to the most important evidence of the use of prose for literary purpose before the nineteenth century. The essential part of the article is the analysis of a complex linguistic situation in northern India. This analysis leads to the conclusion that the prevailing tendency of that time to stress differences between language forms used by Hindus on the one hand and Muslims on the other lead to the language split and to the rise of modern standard Hindi. Next she points out external factors influencing the development of Hindi prose, such as: the spread of education and widespread production of educational material, the establishment of printing houses, the development of journalism and, finally, prose writing in other Indian languages. The final part of the article presents the scope of the nineteenth century Hindi prose ranging from old-style prose tales to newly developed didactic novels, romances and detective fiction.
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