[INDOLOGY] Kuruntokai 106

Tieken, H.J.H. H.J.H.Tieken at hum.leidenuniv.nl
Sun Feb 23 06:42:23 EST 2014

Dear Dr Palaniappan,

Thank you for the other instances of the construction. Especially Puṟanāṉūṟu 191, line 4 is interesting: yāṉ kaṇṭaṉaiyar eṉṉ il̥aiyar, literally, “My kumāras see what I see” (in Hart's translation: “My servants do what I wish”). Here there is a change of subject between the respective clauses: I see, they (act) like that”. This offers an explanation for tām in tām maṇantaṉaiyam: “To enjoy a more intense love-making they (tām) first reject the lover. We women operate in that way.”

By the way, I fail to see why maṇantaṉaiyam should be analyzed as maṇanta (an adjectival participle) plus aṉaiyam, as suggested by Eva Wilden.

If you don't mind, I stick to my interpretation of the phrase “'receiving' a person like fire into which ghee/oil is poured”.


Herman Tieken
University of Leiden
The Netherlands
website: hermantieken.com<http://hermantieken.com/>
Van: palaniappa at aol.com [palaniappa at aol.com]
Verzonden: zaterdag 22 februari 2014 23:34
To: Tieken, H.J.H.; indology at list.indology.info
Onderwerp: Re: [INDOLOGY] Kuruntokai 106

Dear Herman,

maṇantaṉaiyam < maṇanta + aṉaiyam

yāṉ kaṇṭaṉaiyar in Puṟ. 191.4
cūr nacaintaṉaiyāy in Kuṟ. 52.2

The meaning of etirkoḷ is the opposite of what you have indicated. See Tamil Lexicon entry below.

எதிர்கொள்(ளு)-தல் etir-koḷ-
, v. tr. < எதிர்³ +. [T. edurkonu.] 1. To advance or go towards a guest or great person to meet, welcome and receive him; வரவேற்றல். வேனில் விழவெதிர்கொள்ளும் (கலித். 36). 2. To accept; ஏற்றுக்கொள்ளுதல். எஞ்சொ லெதிர்கொண்டு (பு. வெ. 9, 32).

The scenario you envisage will not apply here.


-----Original Message-----
From: Tieken, H.J.H. <H.J.H.Tieken at hum.leidenuniv.nl>
To: indology <indology at list.indology.info>
Sent: Sat, Feb 22, 2014 2:18 pm
Subject: [INDOLOGY] Kuruntokai 106

I had another look at Kuṟuntokai 106, discussed earlier by Palaniappan and Hart:

tīti ṉeñcattuk kil̥avi namvayiṉ
vantaṉṟu vāḻi tōḻi nāmu
neypey tīyiṉ etirkoṇṭu
tām(/tāṉ/taṉ) maṇantaṉaiyam eṉa viṭukan tūtē.

As I see it, the real problem of the poem consists of the construction of two verbal participles, or absolutives, etirkoṇṭu and maṇantu, followed by aṉaiyam “we are like that”. The construction is rare but I found one other instance in Naṟṟiṇai 179, lines 6-7 (vīṅkuvaṉal̥ vimmi nerunalum aṉaiyal̥) about a spoilt girl who refuses to drink the sweet milk her mother gave her, sobbing (vimmi, a verbal participle) and clamouring for more extravagant sweets (vīṅkuvaṉal̥, a participial noun). Only yesterday the girl behaved like that (aṉaiyal̥) but just now she ran away with a unknown – and poor – fellow. No more sweet milk for her!
If this is how the construction works, the situation underlying our Kuṟuntokai poems may be described in the following way. The woman speaking had sulked, her lover had fled away and sent a messenger telling that he does not understand why she was angry at him. She replies that sulking is just part of the play: making love (maṇantu) after a quarrel (opposing the lover's avances, etirkoṇṭu, flaring up like fire into which ghee/oil is poured) is special. Compare Sattasaī 522 in the translation by Peter Khoroche and me (Poems of Life and Love in Ancient India. Hāla's Sattasaī, p. 115): “After every quarrel, it's true/The pleasures of love taste new.


Herman Tieken
University of Leiden
The Netherlands
website: hermantieken.com<http://hermantieken.com/>

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