Sugarcane (kan2n2al)

N. Ganesan naga_ganesan at HOTMAIL.COM
Sun May 16 14:13:59 UTC 1999

We are indeed fortunate to have a poem by TiruJAn2acampantar
(7th century CE) on his hometown, cIrkAzi where he employs

        iruvarkku eri Aki nimirntAn2
        uruvil periyALoTu cErum
        *karunal paravai kamaz kAzi*
        maruvap piriyum vin2ai mAyntE.  (Tevaram 1.34.9)

"paravai" is formed from the verb "para" (to extend, to expand)
Meanings of paravai are 1) Expanse, extent 2) Sea 3) The
name of a woman, ... Usages like 'paravai alkul', "aaruurp
paravaiyuL maN taLi" exist.

"karunal paravai kamaz kAzi" = *The town, cIrkAzi, surrounded by
sugarcane fields*; This meaning of Tev. taking
karunal as sugarcane is not hitherto recognized by Tamil pundits.

I believe kan2n2al is formed out of karunal, just as
a) pommal, porumal b) nen2n2al, nerunal c) cemmAn2, cerumAn2 pairs.

In the Tamil literature, can I have a quote where paravai
is used with the meaning of 'field'? For example, akam 44.16,
'pazam pal nellin2 pal kuTi paravai'. Thanks in advance.

N. Ganesan

There is "kan2n2al" (sugarcane) occuring in CT.
Like nerunal-nen2n2al pair, is kan2n2al coming from karunal?
"karunal" seeems to be repeating the same meaning twice,
called as "mImicaic col" in tamil grammar.
Both 'karu' and 'nal' denoting black.
DED speculates ta. "al" (night) coming from "nal'.
Is early sugarcane black in color?

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