INDOLOGY Digest - 10 May 1999 to 11 May 1999 (#1999-55)

Balaji Hebbar bhebbar at EROLS.COM
Fri May 14 02:53:59 UTC 1999

Dear  Shri  Madhuresan:

Yes,  there  are  a  lot  of  "AyyangArs"  in  KarnAtAka  who  belong
to  the  non-triad  group.  The  late  great  Prof. A.K.Ramanujam
belnged  to  this  "group"  (tho'  not  necessarily  from  GorUr).  Tho
they  are  KannaDiga  as  any  other  KannaDiga  today  (including
great  KannaDa  writers  like  MAsti  Venkatesha  AyyangAr)  these
people  can  trace  their  origin  to  the  Tamil  country.  In  fact
many  can  trace  their  roots  to  their  ancestor  who  accompanied
RAmAnuja  from  Srirangam  for  his  12  year  exile  in  KarnAtaka.
The  HebbAr  and  MaNDyam  AyyangArs  are  converts  to
Shri-VaiShNavism.  The  HebbArs  were  originally  Hoysala-KarnATaka
SmArta  brahmins.  The  MaNDyams  are  Jains  whose  ancestors  RAmAnuja
defeated  at  King  BiTTideva's  court.  Unlike  the  others,  the
Tamil  spoken  by  these  groups  is  very  KannaDized.

By  the  way,  for  the  information  of  all  who  have  been
following  this,  the  HebbAr  AyyangArs  do  not  keep  the  surname
HebbAr.  It  is  my  group  that  keeps  it.  We  are  TuLu-speaking
MAdhva  brahmins  from  South  Kanara  Distt.  As  far  as  I  know
there  is  no  relationship  between  us  and  the  HebbAr
All  MAdhvas  belong  to  3  groups:
1.  the  TuLu-speaking  Shivalli  MAdhvas  owing  allegience  to  the
ASTamaThas  of  UDupi  and  4  other  TuLu  MAdhva  MaThas.
2.  the  KannaDa/MarAThi/Telegu-speaking  "Deshastha"  MAdhvas  owing
allegience  to  the  UttarAdi,  VyAsrAya,  RAyara  MaThas  and  6  other
lesser  Deshastha  MAdhva  MaThas.
3.  the  KonkaNi-speaking  GauDa-SArasvat  MAdhvas  owing  allegience
to  the  GokarNa  and  the  KAshi  MaThas. (NB:  there  is  a  small
section  of  GauDa-SArasvats  who  are  SmArtas).
The  entire  MAdhva-VaiShNava  community  is  governed  by  24  MaThas.

Unfortunately,  there  are  NO  Tamil-speaking  MAdhvas.  There  are
MAdhvas  in  the  Tamil  country  but  their  "house-language"  (in
KannaDa,  "mane  mAtu")  is  either  KannaDa  or  MarAThi.  Of  course
living  in  TamilnAD  they  can  speak,  read  and  write  Tamil  like
any  other  ethnic  Tamilian.

There  are  a  very  few  (literally  a  handful)  of  MaLayAli-speaking
MAdhvas.  They  were  converted  to  Madhvaism  by  HH  Vishvendra
TIrtha  (33rd  Pontiff  of  the  Sode  MaTha  of  UDupi)  when  he
converted  the  Cochin  Royal  Family.  They  were  NambUdiris.  Again,
there  are  lot  of   MAdhvas  in  Kerala  besides  these.  But  they
are  all  either  TuLu  or  KonkaNi-speaking.  In  Kerala,  I  think  my
people  and  the  GauDa-Sarasvats  are  referred  to  as  "EmarAndri"
(roughly  meaning  Mangalorean).  As  you  may  know,  Mangalore  city
is  not  too  far  from  the  Kerala  border.  Actually,  TuLu  is
spoken  all  the  way  upto  KAsargoD.

Regards  to  all,

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