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Marathi is one of the many languages spoken in India, and has a long literary history. The oldest evidence of written Marathi is found at the base of a thousand year old gigantic statue in southern Indian town of Shrawana-belagola. The inscription is about the king Gangaraya who funded the effort, and his general Chamundaraya, who erected the statue for the king.

Dialects of Marathi include Konkani, Ahirani, Manadeshi.

Marathi uses the Devanagari script for writing and is of the Indo-European family of languages. It partly preserves the locative case in noun declension as follows:


         prabhaat: dawn         grha: house
         prabhaate: at dawn     grhe: at/in house

         pahaat: dawn            ghar: house
         pahaate: at dawn        ghari: at/in/to house

It is mostly spoken in the state of Maharashtra.

Marathi has a long literary tradition. Famous Marathi authors include P. L. Deshpande, V. P. Kale, D. M. Mirasdar.

See also: Languages of India and Pakistan