Sunday, November 22, 2015

353. Tulu place name changes –A peep

Man is born with all necessities of life - some are readily available and some are not.  In prehistory, the bountiful and pristine Nature provided foodstuff readily to our fore-fathers; they had to just forage or hunt for them. Man devised means to get them by specialising in various professions and trades. 
What is the indigence for him to go on changing the name of his settlement or geographical area? What is the driving force or emotional urge - wise or unwise - for changing names? Coming to our State, 'Mysore State' was changed to 'Karnataka', considering the historical relevance. Some Anglicised names were restored to its original status, such as 'Mysore' to 'Mysuru', 'Bangalore' to 'Bengaluru', 'Mangalore' to 'Mangaluru', 'Coorg' to 'Kodagu', 'Udpi' to 'Udupi', etc. As a country, 'Hindustan' became 'India' during colonial rule (by Portuguese, Dutch and French in some trading harbour pockets and entire nation under British).  It adopted the name of 'Bharat' after Independence, but retained the name of 'India', keeping in mind its importance in international relations. Other States and important cities also underwent changes for obvious reasons.
Many countries in the turbulent world too have been undergoing changes in their names and their cities for emotional reasons and/or political upheavals.  The list is too big to be included here.  Besides, it is not desirable to make this article too long by quoting them.

Under-currents of change:
Place names have meanings and not definitions (Post-166/14.01.2009: Tulu Onomastics).  So the need for change may be realised or envisaged for one or more of the following guiding factors to make the name fit and apt accordingly:

1.       Compelling reasons or happenings, requiring a change in name.
2.       Political exigency so as to give a proper meaning.
3.       Place name as an Identity Marker.
4.       Turning inward or back upon itself, so to say in one word ‘inversion', as an aftermath of political changes.
5.       Coming into being a new societal or cultural environment on borders or migration and/or forced occupation,
6.       Promulgation by Government authorities to serve the purpose of politics, economy and commerce.
7.       Protecting cultural heritage.
8.       Name changes for streets, predominantly populated areas and administrative sectors.
9.       Changes/Fluctuations in language elements in a region.
10.   Traditions prevailing in an area.
11.   Domination of a powerful political force or dominant cultural force.
12.   Geographical or type of surroundings to give a specific space-related identity.
Lest we should forget, may we bring to memory once again the beautiful Poem ‘Monastery of Old Bangor’ by English Poet Wordsworth wherein he summed up the changes done by Saxon conquerors in British place names:

“Another language spreads from Coast to Coast,
Only perchance some melancholy stream,
And some indignant hills old names preserve,
When laws, and creeds, and people all are lost I “

Old vs. New Tulu Place names:
We have dealt with incidentally some of the Tulu place name changes elsewhere in our Posts on Toponyms. We give below some names which come to our mind readily. Readers may enrich this list by sharing the information which is at their disposal.
Bolteru (ಬೊಳ್ತೆರು) = Belthangadi
Kaniyar .. .. Kanyaar =Kumble.
Karyodi (Kariya Odi) = Karla (Tulu) or Karkala (Tulu/Kannada). [Post-239 on Kar & Bar]
Kudar = Malpe [Post-255/15.10.2010: Import of Kuda element in place names]
Kudla = Mangaluru with several changes [Posts: 246/27.06.10: Kudla – A controversy, 247/10.07.2010: Mangalore Place names & 345/01.12.2014: Mysterious history Mangaluru]

Kukke  = Subramanya (The village has come to be named/known by the name of  Deity Subramanya itself).
Kuduma = Dharmasthala (famed for the Temple of Lord Manjunatha and his Kshetrapala Annappa Panjurli Daiva.

Kuvalayapura:  Kollur (Kuvalayapura is a sanskritised name, as is  Rajatapura to Udupi and Varakula to Barkur.  The place is famous for the Temple of Goddess Mukambika on the bank of River Sauparnika).

Narol = Naraavi (Post: 301/19.05.2012).

Nandār = Nandāvara,   a  village in Bantwal Taluk. 
 As the legend goes, this place was ruled by a powerful King  Nandarāye.  He was born to a man from downtrodden class from a Brahmin girl, who was banished to forest by her parents on her attaining puberty before marriage.  He introduced leather money. On his downfall, those leather coins were eaten away by dogs and foxes. Hence the famous saying in Tulu: ‘Nandu Rayana baduku nari nāyee tindudu pOndu’

(Read also Posts:  266(05.01.2011),  268 (23.01.2011) and 107 (07.04.2008).

Periadka = Hiriyadka (Change effected in Kannada in Government Revenue records)
Posodi = Hosabettu [ Post-109: Odipu;  Post-239 On Kar & Bar]
Puraal = Polali [ Post-64/29.12.2007; 315/18.09.2013]
Ala= An ancient Place Name Indicator Word, a place beside river/water. 
In summer earlier, the sandy bed and bank of the River Phalguni is conspicuous by shallow water or absence of water at some stretches.  This naturally attractive quality is epitomised  by its refined name "Pulinapura".

Kannada-English Dictionary of F. Kittel gives the meaning of ‘Pura’as a stream, a rivulet, a brook, a water channel (Poral, Ponal & Kalpura).

Tortalu>Sirekallu = Suratkal. [Post-111/23.04.2008:  Swirling waves of Suratkal].

Suratkal: One mythical story connects it to fight between Kharasura and Lord Ganesha.  When the giant body of Kharasura fell down, his head fell on the rocky area of Suratkal.  The other story revolves around Lord Shiva, King Ravana, Shiva’s Atma Linga(= sacred stone structure in the form of a phallus for worshipping by devotees), Lord Vishnu, Narada and Lord Ganesha, posing as a Brahmin boy.  Ravana was bestowed with the Atma Linga as a reward for his rigorous penance, which he undertook to get more power with the grace of Shiva. Shiva gave the Atma Linga with a condition that it should not to be placed anywhere on the soil during his journey from Kailas to Lanka Dweepa. On his way, he stopped at Gokarna to do evening ablution and prayer to Shiva as per his routine rituals during sun sets.  The (false) sun set was brought about by Vishnu by shielding the Sun with his Divine Wheel, the Sudarshana Chakra. On seeing Ganesha in the guise of a ‘bāla vatu’ (= a Brahmin boy wearing a sacred thread as a sign of celibacy), as advised by Sage Nārada, Rāvana handed over the Atma Linga with strict instructions not to keep it on the ground until he finished his evening prayers.  Ganesha tricked Rāvana by calling him soon three times that he (Ganesha) could not bear the weight any longer and landed the linga on the sea shore.  The linga sank into the earth.  Rāvana strenuously tried to extricate the Linga but howsoever he put more force, the Linga did not budge. By the force of his pulling, upper parts (head) of the linga flew at different places.  One piece fell at Suratkal (Dakshina Kannada) and other pieces fell at Dhareshwar, Gunavanteshwar, Murudeshwar and Sejjeshwar (all in Uttara Kannada District).  Shiva temples were built on these places.  Shiva is worshipped as Mahabaleshwar in Gokarna and as Sadashiva at Suratkal.  These legends try to give importance to ’Shira’ (head) and ‘kallu’ (=stone) by relating it to Shiva-linga.
Volalanke = Mulaka > Mulki (Post-305/18.10.2012: Mulki, an emerged land).
Odipu = Udpi > Udupi (Post-109/20.04.2008 ;Post 318/29.10.2013: Udupi-Orissa – common thread).
Odiyara = Udyavara (Post-184/27.04.2009: Magic of Malpe, Post-182-183/7th& 16th April 2009: Uliyargoli to Malpe 1 & 2 & 181/31.03.2009: Vanished Port of Udyavara). It was mentioned as ‘Odera’ in Greek writing called ‘Oxyhydrinchus Papyrus).
May we hope, the list would grow with the help of Tuluva readers!
We have been witnessing through ages changes in place names, having relevance to linguistics, for one or the other reasons cited above.  The cauldron of change with beliefs – geographical, political, lingual and social – is keeping on boiling.  The strain of Wordsworth’s poem may echo in one’s ears when one sees the changes in place names wrought by the Time for anyone of the reasons aforesaid.

- Hosabettu Vishwanath, Pune

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 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

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