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 kathám [ katham ]

ind. ( fr. 2. ka ), how ? in what manner ? whence ? ( e.g. katham etat, how is that ? katham idānīm, how now ? what is now to be done ? katham mārâtmake tvayi viśvāsaḥ, how can there be reliance on thee of murderous mind ? katham utsṛjya tvāṃ gaccheyam, how can I go away deserting you ? katham buddhvā bhaviṣyati sā, how will she be when she awakes ? katham mṛtyuḥ , prabhavati vedavidām, whence is it that death has power over those that know the Veda ? katham avagamyate, whence is it inferred ? )

sometimes katham merely introduces an interrogation ( e.g. katham ātmānaṃ nivedayāmi kathaṃ vâtmâpahāraṃ karomi, shall I declare myself or shall I withdraw ? )

katham is often found in connection with the particles iva, nāma, nu, svid, which appear to generalise the interrogation ( how possibly ? how indeed ? etc. )

with nu it is sometimes = kimu, or kutas ( e.g. katkaṃ nu, how much more ! na kathaṃ nu, how much less ! )

katham is often connected, like kim, with the particles cana, cid, and api, which give an indefinite sense to the interrogative

( e.g. kathaṃ cana, in any way, some how ;scarcely, with difficulty

na kathaṃ cana, in no way at all

kathaṃcit, some how or other, by some means or other, in any way, with some difficulty, scarcely, in a moderate degree, a little

na kathaṃcit, not at all, in no way whatever

na kathaṃcid na, in no way not, i.e. most decidedly

yathā kathaṃcit, in any way whatsoever

kathaṃcid yadi jīvati, it is with difficulty that he lives

katham api, some how or other, with some difficulty, scarcely a little

katham api na, by no means, not at all ) RV. etc.

according to lexicographers katham is a particle implying amazement