Some of the ancient place-names have been deformed or misinterpreted with passage of time. Reader Ranjan pointed out how Kuduru-bottu hamlet on NH 17 has been mis-translated as Kudure-bottu. The Tulu word 'kuduru' referred to island with the river. But the word 'kuduru'(=island) was confused with 'kudure'(=horse) and consequently the original meaning was lost during translation of the place-name into Kannada.
Similar error has been made in case of the popular place known as Kudroli within Mangalore city. Some translators explained it as Kudure-oli or what they describe as 'a horse yard'. But the original meaning of the word Kudur+oli(=island+hamlet) has historical. and paleo-geographic significance. Several centuries ago the Kuduroli was an island village within a river that dried up during subsequent period. Geological evidences suggest that the historical changes and shifting of the river course rendered the place dry during the early centuries of the Common Era!.
Thus Kudroli is a fossil word that traces the forgotten past paleo-geography of the land that has not been documented otherwise for lack of historical documentation in the region!
While discussing the erroneous interpretation of place-names, Katapadi comes to the mind because of a hilarious misinterpretation. The word Katapadi in Tulu is a pun. The verb 'katapādi' means to tie down. Some people have visualized a fictious story involving a legendary King of Manipura, a small village south of Udupi, who presumably conducted an Ashwamedha (horse-sacrifice) ceremony to propitiate Gods and the place where the designated horse was tied down to a post was said to have named as 'Katapadi'.
However, the actual designation of the word Kāt+pādi (=wild farm) is different and unconnected to this anecdote. There are similar place name of Kaat-padi in Tamilnadu, suggesting that it was an ancient name during the early stages of civilization..
A connected place-name near Kat-padi is Enagudde. It has been misinterpreted as Hengudde, the hill of corpses! Again this is not the original meaning attributed to the place by our forefathers. Ena in place names such as Enakallu, Enagudde etc refer to vertically standing piece of rock. The word 'Ena' (=vertical pole like rock) or 'Eni' (=ladder) needs to be understood properly in the light of the existence of such place names in other parts of Karnataka, specifically with vertical pillar like rock structures. Due to changes in time and tides the vertical rock pole in Enagudde might have collapsed, but the name still reminds us of the pillar rock of the bygone days.
Books for Reference
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