Etymon: paTTaN, pattan, patan

Dominique.Thillaud thillaud at UNICE.FR
Sun Nov 16 17:51:38 UTC 1997

At 3:42 +0100 16/11/97, DR.S.KALYANARAMAN wrote:
>On another note, are haTTa (market) and paTTi relatable?

        Improbable. An evolution 'p' > 'h' is phonetically acceptable (it
occurs in the Celtic and Armenian domains: skr. pra- = ir. ro ; gallish
-ritu = ford ; the Hercynian forrest comes probably from perkus "oak" ;
skr. padam = arm. het) but I don't know any example in Indian one.
Moreover, both senses are not well linked and *if* the evolution 'rt' >
'TT' is acceptable (no answers), the root hR- (via hartR ?) would be a
better candidate ...
At 3:55 +0100 16/11/97, S Krishna wrote:
>At the
>same time, I also remember reading about a town called Bhawanipatna in
>Orrissa whose name is traced back to a woman called Bhawani who
>performed some kind of a meritorious deed which led to the town being

At 4:57 +0100 16/11/97, Miroslav Rozehnal wrote:
>One of major Buddhist pilgrimage places is today's Sarnath which was
>"back then" called Isipatana.

        In both cases, we must remember than  latin portus is not
specifically a haven or a ford but a "point of passage" (the French word
'port' is still used for a pass and I remember the Redhorn's Gate in
Tolkien's Lord of the Rings). A river is not necessary and a mystical
meaning can't be excluded ...
At 6:25 +0100 16/11/97, Sudalaimuthu Palaniappan wrote:
>In an article entitled, "Etymology of Place-Names PaTTi-HaTTi: Some
>Observations on the History of Maharashtra and Karnataka", in Annals of
>Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute, 1951, Vol. 32, pp.41-56, S.B. Joshi
>gives a Dravidian origin for words like, paTTi, paTTaNa, haTTi, pADa, vADa,
>vADi, etc.

        There is allways some people to say a word Dravidian when it
contains a retroflex. Perhaps right, perhaps wrong ;-)

        Toponymy is a very hard science because it involves a big lot of
dialectes and many possibilities of corruption and popular etymologies.
Moreover, naming the towns of a kingdom is a power act and, sometimes, the
state servants in charge of it were not knowing the local language.
        Without ancient historical documents, it's practically impossible
to say anything serious: the French town of Lyon had a lion as an emblem;
how, without old texts, find the etymon Lugdunum "fortress of the God Lug" ?

        My question about tIrtha and saras was induced by the fact than
fords and bathing places play an important role in Eurindian religious
practices. I profit of the occasion to recall an ancient ask of mine who
was left unanswered:

>       In MMW (s.v.) Yonidvaara is said to be the name of a sacred bath,
>>referring to the MBh.
>       Searching in (thanks, Tokunaga sensei), I've  found two
>occurrencies of >this word and one is just in a violent birth's
>description (MBh XI,4,5).
>       The other (MBh III,82,83) seems more appropriate but not very
>clear. It >appears to be linked with the sacred town of Gayaa but very few
>details are >given.
>       Do someone know more about this sacred bath (location, ritual,
>meaning >of it) ? I would be VERY interrested if the bathing would be the
>first step of >a pilgrimage about 'future life' and VERY VERY if the
>sacrifice of a little pig >would be necessary or if cowries would be

        Thanks in advance,

Dominique THILLAUD
Universite' de Nice Sophia-Antipolis, France

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