Featured Post

363. Deciphering Tulu-nadu place names

The readers would observe that many of the Tulu Place names may not convey, on the face of it, any specific meaning or apparent meanings...

Saturday, February 28, 2009

176. Alevoor


Alevoor is a suburban village located a few kilometers to the Southeast of the famed temple town , Udupi . It is about 8km east of the West coast and the Arabian Sea. Udyavara and Korangarapadi villages separate this village from the West coast.
The place name ‘Alevoor’ spins several shades of meanings, with the terms ‘ala’ and ‘aley’1 having meanings in Tulu language such as water and butter milk respectively. The Tulu word ’ aley’2 also means old, decayed or decrepit. In that sense it is similar to the Kannada word ‘Hale ‘or the ‘old’ one.
With these literal meanings in the background we can assume that (1) the village name ‘Alevoor ‘means a old (‘Halevoor’ as in Kannada ) or disused village.
Or alternately (2) we can infer that it was Ala+oor or village on the bank of an ‘ala’ or river. The word component ‘ala’ in Tulu words like Kudala, Alupe, Aluve, Bajal etc are distinctly suggestive of proximity or spatial relation to rivers or water bodies. Infact , the village Alevoor is situated on the banks of a rivulet (‘Manipura Holey’ , a tributary to River Udyavara) which might have been a more dynamic river in the historical past.

Historical reconstruction
In the absence of any historical records, the evolution of the village “Alevoor “ can be visualized as follows:
In the early period of Tulu civilization, ‘Alavoor ‘ (ala+oor= village on the river bank) was a popular township on the bank of the River ‘Manipura Holey ‘(Holey=rivulet) which along with ‘Shirva Holey’ joined Udyavara River before disgorging into the Arabian Sea.
With passage of time the river dried up as a result of natural hazards and the people were forced to shift out the village probably to Udyavara which formed one of the ancient urban centers of Tulu civilization and royalty. The old village was then referred to as ‘Alevoor’ or ‘Halevoor’.
Those who have more authentic historical records on the subject discussed above may kindly proffer their remarks.
®
Comment by H.Viswanath:
Alevoor - an Eponym!

For want of documented records or evidences, it is difficult to construct a 'historical world' wherein things talked about stand related and consistent.

Shades of meaning given to part-word 'ale/ala', which form the basis for the place name (toponym) 'Alevoor', are perfectly all-right. Mark this word: 'aleppaatu', which means a shallow canal way for water flow in agricultural fields. 'Ale' also means 'wave'; so it is a village of river with shimmering waves.

Plausibly, 'Alevoor' is an eponym, according to me. 'Ale' also means 'wander/roam'. 'Alemaani' means either an European or a German (Latin: Alemauni, Arabic: Almaani, German: almaanii - See Tulu Lexicon Page-183). It must have been a thickly vegetated and sparsely populated vast area in those days, rendering it a suitable camping ground, say a temporary riverian resting place in the beginning, for vagabonds. Studies show that we are bunch of wanderers ('alemaarigalu'), carrying a record of our wanderings by way of chromosomal hues.

One more meaning of 'ale' is 'to get exhausted/be weary'. 'Ale' further means 'to think oneself/to meditate'. So, it is a 'alevara + ooru > alevoor. 'Alevooraya' is one of the surnames of Brahmins (See TL Page-184).

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

175. Nanthur

Our place names have preserved some of the old fossil words that are no longer in use. Nantur (also written as Nanthur) is one such interesting place name. Nantur (pronounced as short 'na' ) is a junction in the outer Mangalore, located amidst Shivabagh, Kadri-Padavu and Bikarnakatte (-Kulashekar) localities.

Nanta- a lost word
What is the meaning of the word 'nanta' in the toponym 'Nanthur' or specifically nanta+oor? The word 'nanta' has been apparently lost or forgotten in the current usage. We do not find the word included in the Tulu Nighantu. However, the clues for deciphering the word 'nanta' can be obtained from the words 'ananta' (=endless) and 'nantara'/'anantara'(=afterward). If 'ananta' is endless, then the 'nanta' should be 'the end'.

Precipice
If you forget the urban developments in the Nanthur and analyse the basic geographic- topographic features of the area, we find that it is located on the edge of a precipice or cliff. The cliff extends from the western side of Nanthur upto Kadri hills Circuit House. On the western side of the cliff is a bowl shaped valley (also called 'Kai baTTalu' in local parlance and is a popular part of the legends of the Kadri Manjunatha temple).The Kadri Manjunatha temple is also situated in the valley down the cliff.
The word 'nanta' exactly referred to this topographic feature of a cliff. Thus the Nantur was named as a village on the edge of a cliff!

Related words
From the old word 'nanta'(=edge of cliff, end of an area),the word 'a+nanta' (=endless) has been derived. Similarly the Kannada words 'nantara' and 'ānantara' may have been derived as 'after the end, pause or break' (>.nanta+ara). In these Kannada usages 'nanta' referred to time rather than space.

Kanta
Compare the word 'nanta' with another Tulu/Dravida word 'kant' or 'kanta'(short 'ka') which means deep,steep, dip, submerge, prick (penetrate) etc. It is also used to referred to the Sunset which is can be visualized as as Sun dipping into the Sea in the coastal beaches . [The word 'kant' has also other meanings such as installment(of money transactions etc) and mesh of fishing net etc].
k'+anta= steep,deep
n'+anta=edge of cliff
Note that the meanings steep,deep,dip etc are related to cliff suggesting that these two words originated based on the same root word 'anta' which possibly meant 'edge of land' in the beginning .
®

Monday, February 9, 2009

174. Mudarangadi

Mudarangadi is a modest suburban village in the southern part of Udupi Taluk. It is about seven km from Padubidri located on the Nadisal- Shirva road.
Mudara
The village Mudara-angadi carries the name of the person Mudara. The meaning of the word -a bit unusual in the current context- leads us to visualize the mindset of the people of agricultural-farming stage of human evolution some 3000 to 3800 years ago. The word 'mudara' means 'fertile soil'. It was a popular male name among early tribes for centuries until Sanskrit style of proper names became vogue(ca. 500 CE and thereafter).The name continued to exist among the present generation of natives and tribes until recently. The meaning shows that the nature(fertility) of the soil was of paramount importance during the time-period when agriculture played key role in shaping the destiny of the people.
Angadi
We have discussed the meaning of the word 'angaDi' earlier. Angadi was a bazaar or open shop(s) in the olden days that is now applied to protected shops within enclosures.
The legend prevailing among the locals of Mudarangadi helps us to visualize the nature of shops in the olden days. According to natives of the suburb, once upon a time a person called Mudara had an open shop under the shade of a tree on the roadside near the (present) St Francis School. The materials of the shop were kept for sale on a raised platform ('kaTTe') built around a tree.
The situation describes the word 'angadi' clearly: 'ang'(=open place) + 'aDi' (=under/ the shade of tree).

The ancient style of open shops under the shade of trees (angadis) have evolved into the present posh shops, well secured within fortified enclosures.

®

Sunday, February 8, 2009

173. ToaDu



The word 'toaDu' in Tulu and Kannada now means small narrow path of a minor stream. However it appears that in the past was the word 'toaDu' was equivalent of a river. The exact meaning of the word 'toaDu' might have been changed with passage of time. Check for example the two place names in Sullia taluk that straddle either sides of the River Payaswani.

Todikana , Aranthodu
Arantodu and Todikana. These two villages straddle the northern and southern banks of the Payaswani river. From Aranthodu village you can cross the River Payaswani and travel to Bhagamandala, the origin point of the river Kaveri (Kodagu district) through curvy roads through the forsts of Todikana. Arantodu seems the 'toaDu'(=stream) of beside the ancient settlement of Aria tribes and the Todikana is the kaana (=forest) by the side of toaDu, the Payaswani river.
There are no evidences to the guess that Payaswani River was a small 'toaDu' (= minor water course) once upon a time in the history. The deep and wide river valley associated with the River suggests that it was a broad river since ages.
Therefore we can conclude that earlier in the history the word 'toaDu' represented a 'river' unlike in the present usage.
®

Saturday, February 7, 2009

172. Andhra and Dravida


There are some explanations to the origin of the terms 'Andhra' and 'Dravida' that represent major socio-linguistic groups in southern India.It appears that these two were separate tribal groups even though now Andhras are considered a part of the mega Dravida Group.
Now here is an one more attempt at fathoming the origin of these words. The two words represent mega-tribal groups that settled in parts of southern India in the antiquity. Note that these bear certain analogy with a common word component 'dra'. The common component can be employed to unravel the origin of these words.
To begin with, let us see how some of the tribal group names have come into being

Koraga
Koraga constitute an ancient tribal group in the Karavali probably with analogous or somewhat equivalent tribal groups in other parts of India like Kurukh, Kurub, Kor, etc. It is interesting to note that the word 'Koraga' represents man or husband in Koraga language. The other word Korati represents wife or the woman of this tribe. Similarly 'Bakuda' represents man or husband in their language.
Let me cite this example to show that the equivalent of the word 'man' ('Koraga' in their language) has been employed to refer to the particular tribal community. However, if you analyse a little further you find that the Koraga settlements are known as 'Kor koppa'. Since the word 'koppa' represents a hamlet or settlement, the term kor-koppa means hamlet of 'Kor' people. In other words originally the tribe was known as 'Kor'.

Dara
An ancient word that is still preserved in Tulu language-'dara' has been surveyed earlier in this blog. The basic meaning of the word as in Tulu appears to be soil, earthen bund, earth (and the world) Sanskrit word 'dhara' (Kannada: 'dare' with d as in English 'the') apparently evolved from this word dara.
However, the word has evolved widely and has several shades of meaning in the languages of the world, some of which have been enlisted below:

Dara (pre-Sanskrit/ Dravida)=soil, earthen bund/ wall,>earth.>world. > Tara=variety,class.
Dhara (Sanskrit)=Earth.> World.
Dhāra (Sanskrit)=flow,river. > Tāra (Sanskrit, Cambodian)=Star, Virgin,Girl
Dara (Africa,Bermuda)=Beautiful.
Dara (Hebrew)=wisdom
Dara (Hebrew)=compassionate
Dara (Hebrew)=mother of pearl.
Dara (Farsi)=Riches, Class.
Dara (Hebrew) =Angel of rains and rivers [<.Possibly derived from Phoenician 'In-dara']
Dara (Kannada)=Rate, price.
Tara (Kannada)= Variety,Class
Dara= A Biblical male character who symbolized wisdom.
Dāra= A Punjabi male name.
Dāra= thread.
Dāravi=a place name in Mumbai,Maharastra.
Daram(=Path).> Dharma (way of life)
Daari (Kannada)=path.

Andhra
Andhra were a tribal community to begin with in the antiquity. The word Andhra apparently evolved from its early and original form 'an-dara'. The word 'āN' represents male in several Dravidian languages. Further 'andar' represents male species of animals in at least some of the Dravidian languages. The Telugu word 'andaru' means everybody. It is possible that this word 'andar' evolved from āN+dara or 'the men of the world' or simply 'the people'.Compare this word with the application of th words Koraga or Bakuda (=man or husband) for the tribes name. Hints and shades of ancient patri-archial male dominated society can be delineated.
The ancient word 'dara' (=earth, world) has been discussed in earlier posts in relation to the word 'mudara'. Some more points on 'dara' can be added here using the base 'In-dara'.

Indra
The name of ancient Phoenician God 'In-dara ', the Storm God, helps us to trace this ancient word 'dara'. The 'Indara' was the original form of the familiar word that was adapted into Indian Vedic God 'Indra'. Conceptually, Indra is considered as the captain or leader of Gods in early Vedic period (ca.2000-1700 BC).Indra was worshiped as Storm God in many of the ancient civilizations in Europe Asia and Africa. The ancient Phoenician God 'Indara' has been considered to be the conceptual forerunner of Indra of Indian Vedas. The word 'In+dara' can be analysed as 'the leader of the world.'
Incidentally, the word 'Indra' in Telugu meant 'idiga' or the toddy tapper. Was there some relation between the word components (in)'dra 'of Andhra and 'Ida' (>ideya,idiga) of Dravida?


Dravida
Since the Robert Caldwell used this word for representing South Indian language and culture, the origin of the word has remained controversial. He borrowed the word 'Dravida' from 7th Century Sanskrit work by Kumarila Bhatta known as Tantravartika. There is a suggestion that 'Dravida' is connected to 'drava'(=liquid) and that the name derived since Dravidians were great sailors. Others argue that 'Dravida' is not a Tamil word since components like 'dra' are absent in Tamil. However many have argued that the word 'Tamil' is derived from the word Dravida.
Sediyapu Krishna Bhat opined that 'Dravida' is a Sanskrit word having a meaning of 'land full of forests'.(dru=forest,wood; ila= containing).
The sequence Dravida> Damila.> Tamira> Tamila is the most commonly argued line of evolution/transition of the words. There is another rival school of thought that propounds the vice versa that the word 'Dravida' is derived from the term 'Tamil' .Bhadriraju Krishnamurthy believes that the word dravida is later than the word 'damila'. The term 'damila' is said to have been found in early Jain literature dating back to 200 BC.
The third modified viewpoint especially from this blogger is that dravida and tamila/damila were the regional variants of the same word considering the distribution of variants of the related words ida, ideya (iddya), yedeya (Yedapadavu, Yedagonadanhalli, Yediyur), ila/ yela (Ilawal, Ilantila,Yelaniru), and yadava(Yadavagiri) in different parts of southern India.

Thus the words Dravida and damila/tamila could have been the regional variants derived from same origin:
Daravida.>dravida
Darvila/darmila.> Damilar>Tamil

Ida
However,the word 'Dravida' can be reviewed in the light of above word analyses Andara (>Andhra) and Indara(> Indra).It appears that the word daravida> dravida represented 'people of the world' if you accept the following word analysis.
The original form of the word Dravida could be Daravida or dara+ida or 'the pastoral tribes of the world'. The Ida or Ideya or Yedeya were a major pastoral tribes in southern India also known as Yadavs. It is also possible that the word 'Ideya' is also related to 'Idiga'?
The tribal tag 'Ida' (Ida.> Ila
There are distinct evidences in south Indian place names for Ida>Ila transitions, even though it is difficult to conclude whether Ila derived from Ida or the vice versa. Ide village existed during the period of Kadamba reign in Banavasi , Uttara Kannada(4to 6th Cenrtury CE).
One of the interesting observation is that the word dravida was not in use in southern India until probably Robert Caldwell employed this word to denote a special linguistic group. It is possible that the word Dravida was used in Sanskrit literature only in the beginning and in southern India the equivalent term in usage was the 'Ideya'.
Linguistic,socio-cultural and genetic evidences suggest that the ancestors of Dravida tribes migrated from Mediterranean region to India probably during the early Vedic period. A major migrant community was possibly referred to as people of the world!

Shudra
A similar word that ends with -dra suffix is 'Shudra'. By analogy of foregoing analysis we can propose that the word evolved from the original Su-dara , the inferior or labourer of the land or Earth.
Chandra
Another significant word in the 'dra' family is Chandra, the moon.

Evolution of words
With the background of foregoing discussions we can summarize the evolution of some of the words with '-dra' suffix/prefix as follows:-

In-dara ( leader of the Earth, Almighty) > Indra.
Mu-dara (wet, fertile soil) > Mudra (An imprint or stamp on the wet soil .> Mark, stamp)
Su-dara (labourer /improved on earth, Sudaar) > Shudra (=Labour class)
An-dara (men of the Earth) > Andhra
Dara-vida ( people/tribes of the Earth) > Dravida
Chen-dira (A beauty in the world).> Chandra.(=Moon)

®

Blog Archive

Books for Reference

  • A Comparative Study of Tulu Dialects By Dr. Padmanabha Kekunnaya. Govinda Pai Reserach Centre, UDupi. 1994
  • Koti Chennaya: Janapadiya Adhyayana. By Dr. Vamana Nandavar. Hemanshu Prakashana ,Mangalore.2001.
  • Male kudiyaru. Dr B. A.Viveka Rai and D.Yadupathi Gowda, Mangalore University,1996.
  • Mogaveera Samskriti By Venkataraja Punimchattaya. Karnataka Sahitya Academy.1993.
  • Mugeraru:Jananga Janapada Adhyayana. By Dr Abhaya Kumar Kaukradi.Kannada & Culture Directorate,Bangalore & Karnataka Tulu Academy, Mangalore,1997.
  • Puttubalakeya Pad-danagalu. Ed: Dr B.A.Viveka Rai,Yadupati Gowda and Rajashri, Sri Dharmasthala Manjunatheswara Tulu Peeta. Mangalore University.2004
  • Se'erige. Ed:Dr K.Chinnapa Gowda.Madipu Prakashana,Mangalagangotri,2000.
  • Studies in Tuluva History and Culture.by Dr P Gururaja Bhat (1975).Milagres College,Kallinapur,Udupi.
  • Taulava Sanskriti by Dr.B.A.Viveka Rai, Sahyadri Prakashana,Mysore 1977
  • TuLu naaDu-nuDi By Dr.PalthaDi Ramakrishna Achar, Puttur.
  • TuLu NighanTu. (Editor in Chief: Dr U.P.Upadhyaya, Govinda Pai Research Centre,Udupi. Six volumes. 1988 to 1997
  • Tulu Patero-A Philology & Grammar of Tulu Language by Budhananda Shivalli.2004.Mandira Prakashana Mangalore. p.317. (The book is in Tulu Language using Kannada script)
  • TuLunadina ShasanagaLa Sanskritika Adhyayana. By Shaila T. Verma (2002) Jnanodaya Prakashana,Bangalore, p.304.(Kannada)
  • Tuluvala Baliyendre. Compiled by N.A.Sheenappa Hegde,Polali,Sri Devi Prakashana,Parkala,1929/1999

A Coastal estuary

A Coastal estuary
Holegadde near Honavar,Uttara Kannada dist, Karnataka

Copy? Right - but kindly remember to acknowledge!

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

" tulu-research.blogspot." ತುಳು ರಿಸರ್ಚ್. ಬ್ಲಾಗ್‌ಸ್ಪಾಟ್‌. ಇನ್

" tulu-research.blogspot."  ತುಳು  ರಿಸರ್ಚ್.  ಬ್ಲಾಗ್‌ಸ್ಪಾಟ್‌. ಇನ್
Have a nice day !