20 October, 2017

Mavittapurm, Keeramalai And Some Questions Raised By Place-Names Folk Lore

By Chandre Dharmawardana

Prof. Chandre Dharmawardana

In an  interesting recent internet article published in dbsjeyaraj.com, Ms. Dushyanthini Kanagasabapathipillai  has repeated one version of an old anecdotal explanation of the place-name “Mavittapuram”. This story is somewhat in the same tradition as the story given to “explain” the place-name “Yalpanam” in terms of a blind lute player; the latter story does not find favour with historians as well as older authorities like Fr. Rasanayagam.

The story  regarding ‘Mavittapuram’ claims that ‘Ma’ could refer to horse in Tamil, while ‘Vitta’ could be construed to mean ‘removed’, while ‘puram’ (Sanskrit, ‘Pura’ and  ‘(p)Ur’ in old Tamil) means city. So the intriguing ‘horse-removed-city’ name is substantiated with the following story:

“A teenage Chola Princess in South India was cursed by a ‘Muni’ (a sage ) who was angered when he was laughed at by the princess – clearly a very spiteful sage! In some versions of the story, the sage had a “horse-like” face and it was this that caused the princess to laugh at the sage. The curse turned the face of the princess into that of a horse. In order to undo the curse, the princess had to come to Lanka and bathe at the Keerimalai  sacred springs, and offer penance to Lord Murugan”.

However, we should consider the old Tamil word ‘maavital’, and also the word  ‘mavita’ in Sanskrit, signifying ‘bound’, ‘marked-of’ or ‘tied together’ (Monier-Williams Sanskrit dictionary) before re-invoking  this traditional but far fetched horse-removed-city name? Perhaps the legendary story fits better with Dushianthini K’s interest in presenting her story associated with the Murugan temple. Nevertheless, it is  important to look at a more prosaic, if less exciting point of view that may be closer to reality. Of course, there is no water-tight proof of any of these explanations about place-names unless we can find clenching literary or archeological evidence. Such support is available only rarely. But it is not difficult to recognize pure folk-lore for what they are.

The story reported by Dushyanthni K is inconsistent, or has incorrectly confused several threads of Hindu iconography and representations of the avatars of Lord Vishnu, Ganesh, Murugan etc., as well as the historical facts associated with the ‘Keeramali (Vakulakanda)’ shrine. Keerimalai (Vakulakanda) is associated with Lord Nakulesvaran (rather than Lord Murugan), i.e., the mongoose-faced God of Hinduism and also of early Mahayana Buddhism where ‘Vakula’ is the name of a Mahayana-Arhant (i.e., a Buddhist saint who has achieved one of the higher mental states leading to emancipation). This Arhant had a mongoose as his pet and personal companion. Thus ‘Keeramalai ‘ itself has layers of history in it, with an early fusion of Mahayana Buddhism and Hinduism that was typical of the ‘Pasupathi’ cult that probably existed here, contemporaneously with the rise of the Pasupathi movement in India.

In contrast, the horse-faced Hindu deity is ‘Hayagriva’, and is a part of Vaishnavite worship rather than that of Murugan. Furthermore, many of the Hayagriva Kovils are old temples designated to God Naka, the God of the Naga tribes, and are found in towns with links to the Nagas, e.g., in cities with name like Nakpur (Nallur), and not really associated with Lord Murugan.

Professor Kathigesu Indrapala had expressed the view (2005) that none of the Jaffna temples except  the Nakulesvaran temple  in Keeramalai has an ancient history. On the other hand this view may have to be modified when we recognize that Nallur (‘Nak-ur or Nagapura’)  most probably had a temple dedicated to God ‘Naka’, the totemic God  of the Naga people from early times. Furthermore, according to the Historian Bandu de Silva, the Nakula story could have risen from an ancient belief of a Yaksha cult, ‘Nakua’, whose totemic symbol was the mongoose. Such a Yaksha temple may have existed at the present Keeeramali site in those ancient times when Nallur had a temple dedicated to God Natha.

So what does the place-name Mavittapuram mean?

The word ‘Maavita’ most probably means a demarcated area (c.f., old Tamil, maavital, and mavita in Sanskrit), signifying ‘bound’, ‘marked-of’ or ‘tied together’. Thus the area is tied with the more important Keerimalai (Vakulakada) shrine. In fact, an alternative Hindu name that has been used from time to time, mentioned by Ms. Kanagasapabathipillai  was “Kovil Kadavi”, which can be interpreted to means “the neighborhood under the control of the Kovil”. So the latter is consistent with the meaning of Maavittipuram, the long-standing name. The “designated area”, i.e., Mavittapuram, was also designated mainly for the higher castes who had sufficient purity to work in a sacred area. Hence, this area has always been a hot-bed of casteism.Could it be that the Murugan temple was at first meant for the use of the lower castes, and later re-consecrated to a higher status on rebuilding after its destruction by the Portuguese?

Archeological excavations near Mavittapuram and Keerimalai are badly needed, and such explorations would surely produce an amazing treasure trove of artifacts.

Shanmugathasan’s Peking-wing (Communist Party) agitated in 1976-1977 here for low-caste temple-entry-rights, schools, water-wells etc., and accused the TULF-Federal party and S. J. V. Chelvanayakam for supporting the caste system. He challenged Mr. Chelvanayagam to re-contest his seat on the caste issue. Neither the aging Mr. Chelvanayagam, nor the TULF on the high road to militant Nationalism was interested in that gauntlet hurled by the communists.

This has of course been historically a very caste conscious area. Thus recorded caste clashes here are found from 1871 up to modern times. The earliest documented clashes occurred between ‘Vellalar’, ‘Vanavar’ (dhobies) and ‘Ambattar ‘(barbers) groups in Mavittapuram. The conflicts started when the the dhobies refused to wash the barbers’ clothes. The Vellalar have been blamed for those early  conflagration where they attempted to impose the usual orthodox hierarchy.

We have discussed many aspects of the place-name “Mavittapuram” in the write up in our place-names website:

http://dh-web.org/place.names/index.html#Mavittapuram

One should also also examine the place of legends of the sort retold by  Ms. Dushyanthini Kanagasabapathipillai in the context of today’s human values. Just as university Presidents all over the world are forced to look at the ‘tradition-sanctioned’ ragging, and misogynist ‘frosh’ lyrics enacted annually at this time of the year, intelligent temple devotees need to ask what type of values are being unwittingly fueled by the message implicit in traditional devotional practice as well as the folk lore.

In the folk story of the Muni who lashes out a curse against the insensitivity of a teenage princess, we do not expect to see our modern values regarding how to treat juvenile miscreants, nor ancient values of compassion and justice. However, there may be young impressionable minds that may be mis-directed by all this. In contrast to the human values found in the Silappadikaram, Thirukkural or many Jain and Buddhist (e.g. Jathaka) accounts, the folklore accounts associated with the adulation of these deities seem to push forward  concepts of human mortification and self-punishment at odds with modern values. Piety and abject devotion are demonstrated by hanging from hooks and other acts of sacrifice. These sacrifices can be, and are pushed to extremes in temple-sacrifices of living creatures. The history of this type of devotion is replete with acts of suicide tied to “higher causes” espoused by gods, or individuals apotheosized into Gods.  Or, even trivially,  devotees cast themselves to death under the wheels of the ‘Sapparaum’ or chariot.

Evidently, the writings of Vivekananda and others have not penetrated the camphor-laden smoke of the inspiring drama enacted in the temple grounds. The mindsets of these devotees co-exist without seeing any contradiction in a technological world where flowers are rained over the temple grounds using helicopters.

The recent thirty-year Eelam wars, and the subsequent churning of people in and out of the region, as well as the vast infra-structural development in communications and roads are likely to give a better chance to the people of all stations in life, as well as the Kururals and Gods, to co-exist peacefully. Hopefully, the wonderful surreal drama of the temple festival can occur without the implicit negative moral implications, as the Kururals themselves become more sensitive to modern human values. The re-commencement of the temple festivals from the 1990s, when the government asserted its control on the Jaffna peninsula, and their invigorated continuation under the more eased conditions prevailing today should be welcomed by everyone. Ideally, all should have free access to the temples, without restrictions of caste and race.

 

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    The interesting thing is they are making stories.

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      you mean the BBS and Sinhala Ravaya are creating stories neda jimbo?
      if so ur 100% correct man

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      Stories becomes movies, movies get pirated. Pirates become sensationalized.

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    The story regarding ‘Mavittapuram’ claims that ‘Ma’ could refer to horse in Tamil, while ‘Vitta’ could be construed to mean ‘removed’

    This would translate to “horse removed town?. Its a bit of a stretch I would have thought.

    The “Maa” is the first sylabal as in “Maa-veerrar”. Its Sanscrit “Maha” and “Vita” meaning “large demarcated town” makes much more sence.

    source – http://dh-web.org/place.names/

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      According to the LIFCO Tamil dictionary 1994 edition:
      Maa in Tamil has 23 different meanings

      Malai has 4 meanings,

      Keeri means mongoose,

      Viddu (vidda can be a form of the verb viddu) has 10 meanings, and

      Puram has 7 meanings.

      Now, can the author do some research about the possibilities for the meaning of Mavittapuram and Keerimalai?

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        I would imagine the author (CD) has looked at all these well-known meanings and selected what he feels is the appropriate choice – in fact he mentions his choice. Also, it is not enough to look at a modern dictionary. It is necessary to look at Old tamil as the naming would have happened in ancient times, and also relate the chosen word to the existence of other temples etc and how the naming could have arisen. Clearly the artcile is about all that.

        But what is more important for me are the moral and sociological issued raised in this brief but poignant article.

        What is shameful is that Dushyianthini Kanagasabapathipillai should simply write down this outrageous story about how a teenage girl was defaced by a so-called Muni and restate without batting an eyelid the that the victim should do penance in front of Lord Murugan.

        What about the Muni? Shouldn’t he be punished as well?

        Ms. Dushyianthini K has been brought up as a good obedient Hindu girl who is not to ask such embarrassing questions; she has to accept the lowered stated of our women etc., and not ask how such a wicked man came to be classified as a Muni.

        I am glad that CD has raised all these questions, even en passant, that our Tamil writers don’t WANT TO ask, perhaps because he is a sinhalese and so less bound by what is un-mentionable among the Tamils. But we have to face it and clean up our Kovils and our minds.

        We just get bare-bodied and apply ash and go to the Nallur temple or any other temple, and after the festival everybody has a good feed.

        All these troubling issues about the irrational obscurantism of the Temple teachings, and the rank immorality of many of the folk-lore (or sacred stories) are not mentioned because we have been brain-washed into accepting all that. True, as CD says, the Silappadikaram and Thirkkural move away from the oppressive stuff and have a more civilized face. But they are not part of the orthodox Temple works because Temples are traditional Hindu commercial institutions that work by promising the impossible (in the next world), or contract to intercede with Gods on behalf of you for a suitable fee plus a show of un-questioning subjugation by literally hanging yourself on hooks .

        I prefer to think of Kovil festivities as great cultural pageants and social bonding moments with our families- but there is this immense dark underbelly to it. that we rarely if ever talk about.

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          I should like to come to Ms Kanapahipillai’s defence here,The recording of interpretation of folklore is a respectablke academic pursuit.Ms. K story is a version that is common one in the peninsula,There is another folk story about Keerimail too: That a woman with a mongoose(keeri) face was restored to human face by dipping in its healing waters.
          I don’t reallu undwerstand all this vituparation against fo;k beliefs.Sri Lanks is rife with them and even our political beliefs are founded on such folklore!The

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        /*
        Maa in Tamil has 23 different meanings
        */

        There is no point looking at the Tamil dictionary because its a Tamilised Sanscrit word. You need to lookup the meaning of “Maha” in Sanscrit. The reason why its “Maa” iis becuase “ha” does not exist in Tamil. When Tamils spell “Maha” since thay cannot say “ha” it becomes “Maa”.

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          You are ignorant man! Tamil has many meanings to some word, of which some may be derived from Sanskrit. If you want to talk about the Tamil language, learn it first!

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            correction:

            You are ignorant man! Tamil has many meanings to some words, of which some may be derived from Sanskrit. If you want to talk about the Tamil language, learn it first!

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              Hello Thiru,

              You need to look at the context when analysing the words. I have nothing against Tamil. Understand this. Whenever words get Tamilsied the words looses information becuase most important sounds do not get mapped in Tamil. Therefore if you only know Tamil you cannot even fathom what is missing. Its not me but YOU need to learn Sinhala or Sanskrit for an awakening. Most Tamils misundertand history because of the problem with their language.

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              If one word has many meanings, that language is not a developed one and unusable for any law or science.

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          Sanskrit was a wayward language with a limited vocabulary of words was artificially created by a handful of elites borrowing words from many spoken languages and dead artificial languages including from Tamil, which eventually met it’s demise and went to oblivion.

          Still Sanskrit or Hindi cannot produce a prosody or a poem without burrowing words from Maithli, Bangla or Tamil. There never exists any synonyms for a single word in Sanskrit. For the word Love = Prem, there the Hindi experts has to borrow again from Urdu(Farsi & Arabic) words Mohabbat, Pyaar & Ishq to compensate their ending sounds in poetry.

          Do you know ‘Neer’ is for Water in Sanskrit, not ‘Jal’ or ‘Pani’.
          In Punjabi too the word ‘Rath Naal’ is in affinity to the Tamil word ‘Rattha Naalam’.

          Tamil is one of the longest surviving classical languages in the world. It has been described as “the only language of contemporary India which is recognizably continuous with a classical past.” having “one of the richest literature in the world”.

          Tamil belongs to the southern branch of the Dravidian languages, a family of around 26 languages native to the Indian subcontinent. It is also classified as being part of a Tamil language family, which alongside Tamil proper, also includes the languages of about 35 ethno-linguistic groups such as the Irula and Yerukula languages.

          The closest major relative of Tamil is Malayalam. Until about the 9th century, Malayalam was a dialect of Tamil. Although many of the differences between Tamil and Malayalam demonstrate a pre-historic split of the western dialect, the process of separation into a distinct language, Malayalam, was not completed until sometime in the 13th or 14th century.

          As a Dravidian language, Tamil descends from Proto-Dravidian. Linguistic reconstruction suggests that Proto-Dravidian was spoken around the third millennium BC, possibly in the region around the lower Godavari river basin in peninsular India.

          The most populous Dravidian languages are Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, and Malayalam. There are also small groups of Dravidian-speaking scheduled tribes, who live beyond the mainstream communities. It is often speculated that Dravidian languages are native to India. Epigraphically the Dravidian languages have been attested since the 2nd century BCE. Only two Dravidian languages are exclusively spoken outside India, Brahui in Pakistan and Dhangar, a dialect of Kurukh, in Nepal.

          Dravidian place-names along the northwest coast, in Maharashtra, Goa, Gujarat, and to a lesser extent in Sindh, as well as Dravidian grammatical influence such as clusivity in the Marathi, Konkani, Gujarati, Marwari, and to a lesser extent Sindhi languages, suggest that Dravidian languages were once spoken more widely across the Indian subcontinent.

          About 24% of India’s population spoke Dravidian languages as of 1981. It is, however, a well-established and well-supported hypothesis that Dravidian speakers must have been widespread throughout much of India before the arrival of Indo-European speakers. The Brahui, Kurukh and Malto have myths about external origins. The Kurukh have traditionally claimed to be from the Deccan Peninsula, more specifically Karnataka. The same tradition has existed of the Brahui. They call themselves immigrants. Many scholars hold this same view of the Brahui such as L. H. Horace Perera and M. Ratnasabapathy.

          The Dravidian family has defied all of the attempts to show a connection with other languages, including Indo-European, Hurrian, Basque, Sumerian, and Korean. Comparisons have been made not just with the other language families of the Indian Subcontinent (Indo-European, Austroasiatic, Tibeto-Burman, and Nihali), but with all typologically similar language families of the Old World.

          Dravidian languages display typological similarities with the Uralic language group, suggesting to some a prolonged period of contact in the past. This idea is popular amongst Dravidian linguists and has been supported by a number of scholars, including Robert Caldwell, Thomas Burrow, Kamil Zvelebil, and Mikhail Andronov.

          Dravidian is one of the primary language families in the Nostratic proposal, which would link most languages in North Africa, Europe and Western Asia into a family with its origins in the Fertile Crescent sometime between the last Ice Age and the emergence of proto-Indo-European 4–6 thousand years BC. However, the general consensus is that such deep connections are not, or not yet, demonstrable.

          On a less ambitious scale, McAlpin (1975) proposed linking Dravidian languages with the ancient Elamite language of what is now southwestern Iran. However, despite decades of research, this Elamo-Dravidian language family has not been demonstrated to the satisfaction of other historical linguists.

          Dravidian languages show extensive lexical (vocabulary) borrowing, but only a few traits of structural (either phonological or grammatical) borrowing from Indo-Aryan, whereas Indo-Aryan shows more structural than lexical borrowings from the Dravidian languages. Many of these features are already present in the oldest known Indo-Aryan language, the language of the Rigveda (c. 1500 BCE), which also includes over a dozen words borrowed from Dravidian.

          Vedic Sanskrit has retroflex consonants with about 88 words in the Rigveda having unconditioned retroflexes. In addition, a number of grammatical features of Vedic Sanskrit not found in its sister Avestan language appear to have been borrowed from Dravidian languages. These include the gerund, which has the same function as in Dravidian, and the quotative marker iti.

          The Brahui population of Balochistan has been taken by some as the linguistic equivalent of a relict population, perhaps indicating that Dravidian languages were formerly much more widespread and were supplanted by the incoming Indo-Aryan languages.

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            Such learned articles should not be publishe under a pseudym and not as a cooment but as a signed article wuth proper references and citations.And certainly under the name “Swastick”– however wonderfully ironic it may be.

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            CORRECTED VERSION

            Such learned articles should not be published under a pseudonym and not as a comment but as a signed article with proper references and citations.And certainly NOT under the name “Swastick”– however wonderfully ironic it may be.

            cincinattus – September 11, 2013
            5:56 am
            Reply

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              It is out of my love of languages, I quoted the subject above. Indeed it is interesting to play with words of different languages and interpret with something absurd. Though being a Lankan I have mastered Malayalam with a substance other than English literature & Sinhala Literature, and a little Tamil to write on poems.

              The Swastika is an equilateral cross with its arms bent at right angles, in either right-facing form or its mirrored left-facing form. Archaeological evidence of Swastika-shaped ornaments dates from the Neolithic period and was first found in the Indus Valley Civilization of the Indian subcontinent. It is being used throughout the world from thousands years to date. The Indians, Germans and other Aryan races claim that this is their traditional, national, military and cultural symbol. Aryan who occupied northern India, Punjab and Sindh during 16th and 15th centuries B.C., also entered Baluchistan in the same period. The Aryans used it mostly for military purposes, but nowadays this is a religious symbol in the entire country in India. During World War II. the German Nazis used it as a military symbol affixed on their troop’s uniform. The objectives bahind this study are to research the real facts of Swastika and to find out a solution to this question, is Swastika an Aryan symbol or non-Aryan? The study has, focused its Dravidian aspect and the reasons as to its use in Baluchistan before the Indus Valley Civilization.

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      yes i think your right ‘maa’ is refering to the horse

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      The word Maa-Veerar’s ‘Maa’ referes to ‘Dough’. Veerar refers to ‘Vir’ – Man (Latin)

      Maa-Veerar = Dough Man = Mister Ajeena (Ar.) = Koluveeran (Ta.)

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    INTERESTING THESIS BY CD BUT AS IN NEARLY ALL ARCHEOLOGICAL INFERENCES TOO MANY “PROBABLES” BASED ON FLIMSY CONJECTURES.STIIL THIS CONJECTURE IS BETTER THAN THE HORSE STORY WHICH IS PROBABLY A LATER INTERPRETATION.
    THE ‘NALLUR” == Nag+ur is pure etymological fiction.Nal=Good or excellent in Tamil and Nallur means a good village or town befitting a royal capital.Indeed if CD LOOKS BEYOND LANKA HE WILL FIND NALLUR IN THE TAMIL COUNTRY AS WELL AS IN SOME OTHER PARTS OF LANKA ITSELF.

    ONE MORE POINT: SO KEERIMALAI HAS SINHALA NAME VAKULAKANDA:DOES THIS MEAN THAT THE TAMILS WHO LIVE THERE –and according one scholar with a sterling reputation were brought by the Dutch and settled there,– should be expelled and good Sinhala peole settled there?This sounds like VALLYISM TO ME AS DOES THE EXTRAPOLATION OF THE MEANING OF NALLUR

    CD’s EXHORTATION IN THE LAST PARA IS A VERY INSPIRING ONE AND ONE HOPES MORE AND MORE PEOPLE TAKE IT TO HEART.

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      Cincinnatus has noted this earlier analysis in terms of Nallur=good city and it is good to bring it out from a historical point of view.

      This analysis of Nallur as Nal=good, Ur=city was given by Pandith D. F. Goonawardena and then Fr. Rasanayagam who had been looking for an etymology of the word jumped on it and accepted it. That was in the first quarter of the 20th century.

      Much water has flown under the Changkupiddy Bridge since then and historians have noted the existence of not only Nallur, but Nak-ur, Nak-pur, Nagpur,and also Nagapura all over north and also in south India and south Asia, where ever the ancient Naga tribe was supposed to have lived . There is a Nallur even near Panadura.

      So the discussion of Nallur given by this writer (CD) seems to be consistent with the modern view on the subject. But perhaps CD should have expanded a bit more on it as Nallur is an important site. In the early days, the whole of Jaffna peninsula was known as Nagadeep, and later Welikkam (velikkamam) or, in old-sinhala, Waeligama. This sinhala name is used in the Seegiri Griffity around the 8th century.

      Any “good town” in Tamil is usually rendered with a “Thiru—” suffix, and not with a “Nal–” suffix, as was noted by several Tamil scholars of the time, in commenting on D. F. Goonawardena’s suggestion.

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        Kautilya

        “Any “good town” in Tamil is usually rendered with a “Thiru—” suffix, and not with a “Nal–” suffix, as was noted by several Tamil scholars of the time, in commenting on D. F. Goonawardena’s suggestion.”

        Your South Indians brethren might have been unaware of the word Thiru when they named several of their towns Nallur.

        Nallur can refer to:

        Nallur (Jaffna), a town in the district of Jaffna, Sri Lanka

        Nallur, Kanyakumari, a town in Kanniyakumari district in Tamil Nadu, India

        Nallur, Tirunelveli, a town in Tirunelveli district in Tamil Nadu, India

        Nallur, Tirupur, a municipality in Tirupur district, Tamil Nadu, India

        South Nallur, a town in Coimbatore district in Tamil Nadu, India

        Nallur Electoral District, a former electoral district in Sri Lanka

        Nallur, Chennai, a town in Kanchipuram district in Tamil Nadu, India

        Could you now persuade the chief minister of Tamilnadu to rename these towns as Thiru Ur or Nagpur.

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    “Archeological excavations near Mavittapuram and Keerimalai are badly needed, and such explorations would surely produce an amazing treasure trove of artifacts.”

    Archeology seems to be the recent excuse to encroach the traditional habitat of Tamil people. Say it straight, mate.

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      Excavations in the Jaffna peninsula did not begin recently, but began under the British.

      It has lagged behind for some 40 years because of political turmoil. If excavations begin, that would be a sign of return to normal. Is Rohan worried that deep down it is not Sinhala or Tamil, but Nagas and Yakshas?

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        If they excavate in the Jaffna peninsula they could find thousands of hominid species along with AK47’s under the earthen crust and will be definitely dated back to pre-stone aged biped Sinhalese Buddhists.

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        Well, when people went back and excavated their own wells after army left the place, they found skeletons…. yeah, very similar to the Matale ones from Gota era.

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      There they will excavate surprisingly to find a piece of scribbled pottery in Apabrahmsa saying such and such place is being donated to Bandu de Silva to install a Kirimal Chaitya on behalf of the land grabbing archeology department of Lanka.

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    “Vaiyaa Paadal” was written by a Brahman in the court of Jaffna King. During the rule of Jega Veera Singa Aryan or Pararaja Sekarn V(1380-1414)the book was written.

    No “Vellala” caste existed during the time of Jaffna Kings. But K.S.Nadarajah mention in brackets the “GANGA MAHAR” as Vellala.But GANGA MAHARS were the soldiers from Orissa and came with Kalinga Magha! How can they be TAMIL Vellalal caste?

    So, the Vellala caste was introduced to Jaffna by Portuguese or Dutch!

    Read the book: VAIYAA PAADAL : Publishing editor-K.S.Nadaraja
    Published by Colombo Tamil sangam 2001.

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      Mr. Sivanathan is probably right, and thanks for referring to this little-known work. Doesn’t Emerson Tenant (or someone like that) ascribe the vellars to the “Malabar tamils”? The Vellalar are perhaps the tamil version of the nobodies who became somebodies that Kumari jayawardena has documented for the Sinhalese people.

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        MALABAR is a place in KERALA. Tenant and others clearly mentioned Malabaris and Tamils are separate people.

        Further the throne name of the Jaffna kings was RAJASEKARAN which was the name of the founder of the second CHERA(KERALA) KING dynasty.

        Further the Jaffna Kings always had a name of ARYAN because of their non-South Indian origin.

        I hope the Indian foreign ministry know the history of Jaffna better than the pandits of Jaffna. That is why the former CM of North/East Mr. Varatharaja Perumal and his comrades were sent to Orissa instead of Tamil nadu.

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      Vaiyaa = Unable/Tired in Malayalam.

      Vaiyaa Paadal means = A tiresome song.
      i.e. a Tubeless songs.

      Vellala = Vellai Aal = The White man
      Such simple derivations will suffice without further clarifications.
      Afterall, Portuguese are white indeed, no confusion, no skullduggery.

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        Vaiyaa Paadal was written by Vaiyaa Puri Iyer and it is in Tamil and not in Malayalam.

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          M.Sivananthan, Kautilia,…….

          While many of you are looking for root words (etymology) a Tamil person suggested that “Battaramulla” was derived from Paththar Moolai (Gold Smith Corner) implying that most of the Kotte area was occupied by Tamils from time immemorial.

          Is there any truth in his suggestion?

          Was he pulling my leg?

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            It should be dearly dismissed Nativity.
            Please accept the oldest term Battaramlla (Butter+Mulai)Butter instead of Milk.

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            No, it was derived by noting that dogs in the area (of Dravidian extraction) were peeing upwards. So Mutthara-balla was turned upside down to make Baththara-mulla by a sinhalese comedian. This was the view of Prof. Kularatnum, Geography Prof. in the last millennium and he mentioned it after his talk at one of the Tamil-studies meetings in the 1960s or early 1970s.

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              Kautilya

              Tamil/Sinhala people do have a sense of humour.

              I am really surprised to hear that you did have comedians. What were their day jobs, generals, politicians, historians,epigraphists,…or your Thesia Thalaivars?

              “Tamil-studies meetings in the 1960s or early 1970s.”

              Didn’t the Tamils study Tamil before that period? Its strange, they believe the first ape spoke Tamil, that was 60 millions years ago.

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          Vaiyaburi was a Malayalee. Mr.Siva, please note that Malayalam evolved to be a separate language only 200 years before or so, heavily influenced by Sanguscruti, retaining the basic words of Tamil with which the Malayalam could cripple without. There was no Kerala and no Malayalam (Malayalam is a name derived from the words Malai+Olam (i.e.Hills+Streams), the portion of the Malabar states and the maritime provinces including Tiruvithankod (Travancore) was within the jurisdiction of Tamil State long time ago. The petty Zamindar of Travancore Sri Chira Thirunal, the visit of M.K.Gandi and Congress’ coercion created the State of Kerala. What is Kera? Kera means Coconut, the real siblings of the Lankans.

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      M.Sivananthan is a [Edited out] Tamil from the Vanni area. He and his family were very badly treated in Jaffna by the [Edited out] Tamils. However, after ’83 he ran away to Canada as a refugee.

      The Sinhala political leaders have a policy of attracting the Tamils who were victimised due to caste and regional issues. They give them all the luxuries and tell them to write against fellow Tamils.

      M.Sivananthan is one of them who will do any thing and everything to the Rajapakshe regime. For him Rajapakshe is a God. Even though he lives in Canada, he gets his daily bread from the Rajapakshe regime.

      All what he write here is utter rubbish invented by him, there is no reliable source to verify, and he thinks others are fools to believe him. Of course, I see some dumb idiots believing him.

      I am sure most of the readers here consider him as a JOKER.

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        Idota! I am from Nallur,Jaffna.

        You have no clue about RAJASEKARAN. Better try to know it. You or others cannot find it because most of you came with the WHITES as laborers to Jaffna!

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    What ever the History says;

    Present days,
    I enjoy the Bath in the Keeramalai well after a swim at the sallow sea there, which is close my land.
    in the evening of Fridays , I am Glad to have a taste of Milk rice with sugarcane Juggery ,offering by Hindu Tamil Neighbours,
    after their poojas and rituals at the Nakulesvaran temple,
    I respect them, my Tamil Hindu Neighbours,
    who tolerates a Buddhist Sinhalese at Their locality without any hassles or objections.

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      You can also add Keerimalai is currenly in Army control and not easy to acces the local other thean tourist

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        There were Government forces in that area, and Some lands and premises they occupied, given back to civilians,
        few of them got loans to built their destroyed houses and doing so.
        but there is a Navy checkpoint and a camp close to the Temple and the Well.
        Navy patrolmen are on watch along the shore line and visible sometime in the streets and byroads also.
        And I have got nothing as compensation for my destroyed house and plantation [few trees were there]. and for the occupation of the forces in my vacated premises when there was civil war.
        I did not pursue further for that, as it is involved with the forces .
        in additionally, that action will exposing me to unnecessary problems, and for my kids also.
        Because, keeping touch with forces is another headache as generally, I do not trust them, {cannot trust them]
        and it would break the trust of my Tamil neighbours with me and animosity would have grown.

        any how, the lives of those Tamil neighbours goes on with much difficulties like other Poor’s in Sri lanka and
        with the blessings and help of their Deity of the temple in Keeramalai.

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    “Archeological excavations near Mavittapuram and Keerimalai are badly needed, and such explorations would surely produce an amazing treasure trove of artifacts.”

    What about digging around Kandy Dalada maliga to find the tamil connection to kandy? Test on the tooth hidden there?

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      With your jab on the Dalada maligawa, you seem to imply that by digging around the Keeramalai you will not find Tamil stuff and so you are worried that this is an attempt to find sinhala stuff there!!!
      If there is tamil stuff there they will find it too. But by digging in Keeramalai and Nallur areas you may find things about the Nagas, Yakshas and others who were there before the Native Veddahas, Sinhalese or Tamils came there.

      The sinhalese seem to have no inferiority complex vis a vis the tamils. They have a lot of tamil stuff in Kandy and even a whole line of tamil kings (the Anadara Temil speaking naykkara kings!) in Kandy. The last King was a tamil. They were brought there under the understanding that they uphold Buddhism and work in Sinhala although they can even use Tamil inside the palace. So there is no racism and no need to dig in kandy – it is all in the open. This is perhaps why the Sinhala have no problem with tamils living in the south because they are not twisted up by the orthodox Hindu ideology or the need to establish the existence of “a homeland” other than Tamil Nadu by distorting history.
      Modern secular tamils are urbane cosmopolitan people. But the Rich Cinnamon Gadns tamils have two faces – (i) a modern urbane look speaking English, sinhales and also a bit of tamil and (ii) a return to the Periah Dorei visage when they go North to run their properties that they want ifully n their hands without any government controls (i.e., devolution?). When in the North, they, like ex-Judge Wigneswaran, become upper-class devotees of the Nallur temple who support all the mythology, and the corollary of that temple mythology, i.e., the Manu Dharma. This ensures that the lower castes work their properties as in the days of yore. The poorer Tamils don’t have that problem but they (and the women ) are brought up to obey the Periah Dorei (men) from birth itself.

      This writer CD indirectly suggests that the Temples and Kovils propagate a very immoral social doctrine and an obscurantist belief system at odds with the egalitarian and rational society of modern times. The gods and Muni are the Periah Dorei of yester-year now raised to divinity.

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        Kautilya

        “But by digging in Keeramalai and Nallur areas you may find things about the Nagas, Yakshas and others who were there before the Native Veddahas, Sinhalese or Tamils came there.”

        Please stop tickling me.

        We have a history of more than 26,000 year.

        “The sinhalese seem to have no inferiority complex vis a vis the tamils.”

        They do.

        “So there is no racism and no need to dig in kandy – it is all in the open”

        Oh no, the Sinhala/Buddhist and the part of the aristocracy didn’t like them.

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          We have a history of 26,000 years, says Native Veddha . I thought it was exactly 27322.113 years, but Veddahs don’t know decimals or whole numbers. They only know vulgar fractions, and some irrationals after having drunk the fermented mead.
          Anyway, to get to the 26000 stratum we have to did even deeper than the Naga and yaksha times.
          So, you are in for a good dig. That is where your taxes will go -no more mead or அமிருதம் for you!

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            Wow, Manoharan is speaking on my side, and humorous too!

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              Kautilya

              “Wow, Manoharan is speaking on my side, and humorous too!”

              But you don’t want to be on his side.

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            Manoharan

            “Anyway, to get to the 26000 stratum we have to did even deeper than the Naga and yaksha times.”

            In order to trace Tamil/Sinhala linage back to Sahelanthropus tchadensis one does not need to dig deeper but one has to sit up an watch their behaviour.

            I am sure you don’t want to do that.

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              But Pigit Senerat the Orrovin Tugenensis Iapanum discoverer suggests otherwise, that this creature Sahelanthropus Tchadensis Ruhunum lived before the divergence and is not a hominid at all.

              Could they be the Nittewos, your elders vanquished?

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            How you count now is what you inherited from the Veddahs. Know that Devanagari never found the secrets of the Veddahs numerics and the Sifr, until the Arabs did. For the Indians the latest number before the Zero was ‘Nine’ which they called ‘Nav’ = i.e. latest number.

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        Kautilya:
        1.It is not KeerAmalai but Keerimalai.What is this?Hegemony by spelling?!!
        2.”Good” certainly cannot be translated as thiru.Thiru means something else altogether.

        The principle that
        you must apply in all these archeological conjectures is “Occam’s Razor”.When alternative explanations are availabe,one must select the most parsimonoius one. The most parsimoniuos explanation for Nallur is that it refers to Tamil settlers naming it that way as they did in TAMIL Nadu and Panadura.The choice of a Naga origins is too farfetched an explanation.There is no phonetic justification for the conversion of Nal to Nag,in any case. I take it Kautiya is not going to claim that all names begining with NA refers to Nagas?Beside4s the word Naga itself has mutiple meanings even in North Indian dialects.
        3. The Sinhalese may or may not have an “inferiority complex” about their past Tamil connections, but TODAY Sinhala nationalists at least suffer from paranoid delusions that even giving the basic rights of the Tamils and limited autonomy will in some mysterious way undermine the Sinhalese.

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          Keerimalai and not Keeramali – surely I know that, but even a typo becomes sufficient to claim that it is sinhala domination? This is the problem I was noting in regard to supriority complexes and inferiority complexes.
          கீரிமலை and கீரமலை differ only by a little top hat!

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            Kautiya:
            “கீரிமலை and கீரமலை differ only by a little top hat”
            Good witty re
            riposte! I stand properly rebuked.Considering the tortured,and at times hysterical, arguments for Sinhala hegemony based on dubious phonetics that one reads in these pages from interenet savants,you must forgive me for my jumping to conclusions.

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            Kakkutta, here’s a variety of possibilities for your choice, please choose one and ponder on your own ideas:

            [Edited out]

            Jai Kameshwari!

            Please write in English – CT

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              Idiot CT moderator:

              Do you know how to maintain a decent talk in a site. You camouflaged the Tamil words as suggested which never goes against your putrid terms and conditions. We know some Toronto scums maintain your site.

              @Troik, we are sorry, the comment language in English – CT

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        Sri Lankan Royals always had marriage relations or other with the South Indian Royals only. Prince Vijaya started the practice with Tamil Pandian royals.

        Royals are not the ordinary people. So, ordinary people cannot claim the history of the Royals as theirs!

        Further we dont need to dig anything because we have enough matters and materials with us to do the public debate.

        The problem is NO PUBLIC DEBATES ON THE ISSUES.

        Tamil-Sinhala issue is a creation of Christian rule and we cannot bring our Kings and Queens of the past to solve the “sins” of Christian rulers.

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          Prince Vijaya started the practice with Tamil Pandian royals.

          Things go much earlier than that.

          I have read somewhere an article by some writer (cant remember the author at the moment) who pointed out that ancient royals married according to caste. So Vijaya was looking for a Kshatriya woman. In addition he was also looking for a North Indian fair-skined queen as he rejected Ku-veni (Ku-varni = dark colour). The Pandiyan kings of that time were in fact related to Gupatas, and they too had north Indian wives because they also put a premium on fair-skinned women.

          So Vijaya got a sister of a queen of Madurai, and this queen was a North Indian woman who is said to be from the Sakya or Koliya clan as stated in the Pali chronicles!!! Just because Madurai is Tamil today, we can’t assume the same for the 5th century BC.

          Mr. Sivanathan’s earlier comment on “aryan” epithet of the Jaffna kings may also have some support from this type of effect where royals looked for Kashtriya women with fair skins.

          Even today our men, be they sinhalese or tamils, look for fair-skinnned brides.

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            Clearly it was a misjudgement by Vijaya to have sent emissaries to Madurai looking for fair skinned Gupta women.Since these Gupta women, having lived under the hot South Indian sun for long, would have become somewhat darkened.
            Surley Viyaya should have sent his emissaries to Germany and got some blue-eyed blondes and whitened the Sinhala population more than they are now

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              cincinattus,
              Now that you mention it,the ‘sinhala population’ – those called ‘kandyans’ acquired fair complexions due to their “kandyan hospitality” to visitng englishmen – government agents & magistrates – to the kandyan areas in the days of the british raj.
              The englishmen left their genes behind for eternity.
              Kandyans are proud of their acquired complexion.

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              But, still Vijaya distinguished the Gupta girls from the Odiya girls while inspecting the sun burnt skins near the bikini line.

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            Kuveni = Kawun+Pani(trickle honey)

            I wonder how to find a Kshatriya woman among a stock of women if you parade them nude? Hmmm… all crinks stays vertical nothing of horizontal.

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      well said ANPU!!

      last 3 king who ruled KANDY from MADHURAI

      Sri Vikrama Rajasinha was known as Prince Kannasamy

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        He was Kunnasamy who came from Kanyakumari.

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          Kannusamy.

          Dr.RN

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            Kandysamy, in a pluralistic sense.

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        Madurai Nayaks were part of the Telugu Vijaya Nagar Empire. They ruled Tamils and Sinhalese but they were not of any Kshatriya origin but belong to the Telugu Caste of Kamma.

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          Sivananthan, Seppara Gundu?

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    Tobacco slaves changed the original names.

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      you mean the descendants of outlaw vijaya want to change names now….hmmm nothing new there they already changed manal aru to weli oya neda fathima fukushima (the sinhala man/woman with a muslim name)

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      Fathima Fukushima

      “Tobacco slaves changed the original names.”

      Of course they did, and became Fonsekas and Silvas.

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        SO DID MARTIN LUTHERS, NELSON Mandela’s, DESMOND Tutu’s, BOB MARLEYS, LIONEL RICHIES, CARL LEWIS’, USAIN BOLT’S PELE’S and MICHAEL JOHNSON’S and to some extent even BARRAK OBAMA’S.

        So were the Mamluk dynasty of Egypt, Delhi and Iraq.

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          Maggots in the Brain?

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            NO, MAGGOTS ABOUT PEOPLE, THEIR HISTORY AND THEIR THINKING.

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        Large groups like Jaffna tobacco slaves and estate Tamils kept their Tamil names
        Some estate Tamils now change to Sinhala names
        This fellows ‘Vedda’ community are like slaves in their own country
        Many Buddhists are also slaves before converting from Hinduism, those days as well as today’s Dalits
        The ruling family was Don Henrik, now Rajapakse

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          Playing-Vedda

          “This fellows ‘Vedda’ community are like slaves in their own country”

          Thanks for your concern.

          What are you going to do about it?

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        Yes, inseead of Somapala, Sumanadasa, Karunawathi & Hetuhami

        How dare they, only kings, chiefs, warriors at the time of Portuguese have the right to change, adapt and also use computers, drive cars, wear trousers and go abroad.

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          Lata I pataa to take you by Othaa. Shut up Leela.

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    Soon Keerimalai and Maviddapuram may be decalared to be ‘sacred areas’ and a Buddha statue installed in front of the temple.
    I remember the Ramakrishna Mission madam in Kathirgamam was taken over by the Sirimavo government under the pretext of it being in a ‘sacred area’ and made into a hostel for buddhist monks.

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      Sri Mavo did a wrong thing by converting a HINDU holy place Kataragama to a Buddhist holy place. I hope she paid for the sins too!

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    So Do the Axx Lickers of Jarapassa governance who rely on poor tax payers blood.

    What a sham??. IF THEY HAVE ANY?.

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    Rohan-I had the same concern.Hope there won’t be a brigade of BBS and chinese excavators marching towards the North.

    Julampitiya – Life should be ‘thus’.Glad you enjoy your swims.But I do not like the word ‘tolerate’.As far as I know the Tamils have been very gracious in entertaining their singhala friends visiting Jaffna as a tourist.

    after the war the army made this area a ‘no mans land’ for the residents and other Tamils visiting the temple.Only they enjoyed Keerimalai – waters.One time they did not allow hindhus to cast their family member’s ashes,do their rituals on the beach etc.
    There were sign boards ‘keep out’.
    Thanks to the TNA MP that was removed.

    There is plenty of spring waters in Keerimalai ‘men’s pool’ and the ocean around it vast.
    Welcome and enjoy as long as there is no disturbance with the daily lives of the Tamil people living around the Temple and the villages.

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      Every time I go there, I stay in my own abode close to The KEERIMALAI Temple and Fresh water springs,

      As they say it was given by their Hindu deity,
      to purify before visiting the holy temple.

      I hope that the forces will not Charge a fee for the Spring well at keermalai as they did to Kanniya Hot wells in Trincomalee.

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    NOTE TO SWASTICK:
    Symbols do not retain the same meaning forever.Their meanings change.It is true that the swastika was found in some of the seals unearthed in Harappa and eventually became a hindu symbol.The modern meaning of the swastika is quite different. Hitler appropriated it in the mistaken belief that it was a symbol of the origiinal “ARYANS” whose original home some early German theorist claimed was India. Today,it is the symbol of American and European neo-nazi movements.
    These theories have since neen exploded.Even the notion of an Aryan “race” has been rejected by all scholars.Indeed Sri Lanka is the only place in the world where they use it unblushingly – except of course for its use by contemporary neo-Nazis in Europe and America.Even some of Sri Lanka’s official historians have no hestitation in talking about an “Aryan Immigration”,
    And there are no Aryan languages but only Indo-European Languages.
    Reommended reading J.P Mallory: In Search of the Indo-Europeans.

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      cincinattus

      “Even some of Sri Lanka’s official historians have no hestitation in talking about an “Aryan Immigration”,

      Those Sinahala/Buddhist historians has no hesitation in describing the ancient irrigation Aryan Sinhala Hydraulic Civilisation.

      It seems without the Aryan Sinhala titles the great ancient irrigation system would not survive the test of time.

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    I have to come to Ms Kanaspathipillai’s defense.The recording and study of folklore is a very respectable acadeimic pursuit.The story about Mavidapuram is a commom belief in Jaffna.There is also a folk story about Keerimail: A young woman with a mongose (keeri)face was resored to a human face by dipping into the healing waters of the spring.
    The study and recording of folk lore is much cherished in Sri Lanka.In fact many of our political and ideological beliefs and programs are bases on folk beliefs.The Mahavamsa is after all a collection of historical facts and folklore and many of our politicians have shown themselves to be having difficulty separating the too–not speak of our our historians and journalist!
    Ms Kanapathiplillai is to be commended for recording this story as she has in other instances too.In fact there is a need for a collection of Tamil folklore.There are many collections and stdies of Sinhala foliklore — fir example J.B.Dissanaike’s work.
    I hope Ms K will continue her work despite the cavils of the half-educated internet habitues.

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      There is a whole collection of Parrot-nama from India, reading it all the half-educated internet critters laugh from both their cavities.

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    What a laugh.

    You all got it wrong.

    Mavittapurm basically means this. “Mava”(takana language – offshoot of sanskrit) meaning mother, “vitta” – most of you know this, “sold” puram is really pura.

    So it means the “city the mother sold”. It is very relevant now. The mother country is in the process of selling “Mavittapurm” to the TNA.

    Ah just laugh it off. I am not serious.

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