What part of India is Dravidian?

Yashwant Malaiya malaiya at CS.COLOSTATE.EDU
Sat Jan 8 22:03:00 EST 2000


All great cultures are the result of a synthesis. Tang China achieved
greatness due to Indian and Persian influence. Indian culture too is a
result of a complex synthesis, the two major components being the so-called
Aryan and Dravidian cultures.
Practically all Indians have some Dravidian blood. Certainly some of the
heroes like Krisha (="the dark one") and Ramachandra must
have had some Dravidian blood, although they were born in very Aryan
Andhaka-Vrishni and Iksvaku clans.

In ancient times the "South India" (dakshinapatha) included
Gujarat and Maharashtra. Thus the native Brahmins of Gujarata and
Maharashtra are included in the pancha-dravida as opposed to the
pancha-gauda of northern India. In NirvaNa-bhakti of Jain Acharya Kundakunda
(who lived perhaps in Tamilnadu or Andhra), some Dravida kings are mentioned
to have achieved Nirvana at Mt. Satrunjaya, in Gujarat.

Some major North Indian communities have prominent "Dravidian" features, if
we regard the term to indicate a race. Two very well known Rajput clans,
Rathor (Rashtrakuta) and Solanki (Chaulukya) originated in the South.
High-born Rajputs often tend to somewhat dark-skinned. "Karnataka" people
are frequently mentioned in North Indian sources as a clan around 10-12
cent.

Dravida, Damila, and Tamil are related words. Hemchandracharya
gives several terms for Kautalya (who made Chandragupta Maurya king)
including Damila.

While Tamilnadu is the home of the purest Dravidian language,
71% of the Dravidian speakers live outside of Tamilnadu. It should also be
noted that North Indian languages, including Sanskrit have significant
Dravidian influence.

Yashwant



More information about the INDOLOGY mailing list