New discovery in Tamil Nadu

Stefan Baums baums at U.WASHINGTON.EDU
Sun Jun 28 01:03:18 UTC 2009

Dear George Hart,

this is very interesting. The word form vayra is curious though:
OIA j [ʝ] should not go to MIA y [j] when immediately followed by
another consonant. What the orthography reminds me of is Pali
umlaut of [a] to [ɛ] (written ai and ayi) before ry (von Hinüber,
Älteres Mittelindisch, § 147). Are there alternative Tamil
etymologies that come to mind, or Tamil orthographic conventions
that could explain the conjunt yr? Most importantly, though, are
good images available somewhere so we can verify the reading?

All best,
Stefan Baums

Stefan Baums
Asian Languages and Literature
University of Washington

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