Etymology of the word - kundanam ?

s. kalyanaraman s._kalyanaraman at
Wed Feb 15 15:01:03 UTC 1995

     Mr. Suresh; let me attempt to provide a few semantic/phonemic leads.. 
     kundanamu is a very specific goldsmithy, technical term which means 
     'setting precious stones with fine gold (Telugu); kuntanam = 
     interspace for setting gems in a jewel (Tamil). The associated 
     'imagery' may be drawn from a concordant phoneme: kundene, kundi = rim 
     of stone or other material placed upon a mortar to prevent spilling of 
     rice, etc. (Telugu) The key semantic substructure seems to be related 
     to 'keeping the contents in place, while beating'. The goldsmith 
     performs a similar function when he uses kundanamu (fine gold in thin 
     foils used for setting precious stones) or does a kundanamu (sets the 
     jewel in place using the gold foil like a rim round a mortar). It is 
     also relatable to two sets of etyma: (1) kund- (kunt-) to punch with 
     fist, pierce with spear (Pengo); kund to pierce, prod (ManDa); (2) 
     kuntu having sat down (Kannada); squatting (Tamil) [perhaps similar 
     semantically to 'to set down or 'seat' (a precious stone) in a small 
     hole {cf. kuttu = very small hole (Tulu)}'] 
     s._kalyanaraman at

______________________________ Reply Separator _________________________________
Subject: Etymology of the word - kundanam ?
Author:  indology at at INTERNET
Date:    15/02/1995 9:19 AM

A while ago, I posted this query, but never seemed to have reached here.

I am interested to know the etymology of the word kundanam. In 
telugu, it is used in the meaning of gold.  I am not very sure 
whether it is a Sanskrit word or not, though I have North Indian 
friends, named as kundan. I think that this word has no connection 
to the sanskrit word "kunda (meaning jasmine)", but would be glad to
be clarified by the pundits. My friend's daughter is named kundana,
and I promised him that I would find out the etymology of this word.  
                             --  Regards, Suresh. suresh at 


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