Lubin, Tim lubint at WLU.EDU
Wed Feb 23 14:52:42 UTC 2011

Arlo and Sekar,

Just to illustrate the type of curse in all-Tamil inscriptions mentioned by Palaniappan, a typical form is:

itukku vikātam pa.n.ni_nava_n ke:nkaikkaraiyil kaaraampacuvaikko_n_ra doo.sattil poovaaraakavum kumara_n tu.nai ||
He who obstructs this charity shall go in the sin of one who has killed a black cow on the banks of the Ganges. May Kumara
help us!

This example is from Burgess, Tamil and Sanskrit Inscriptions (1886), temple inscription from Tirupparankunram, pp. 41-43 (with Natesa Sastri's translation). 

Very similar is the first Setupati copper-plate, pp. 62-65, a fascinating document of 1600 confirming a shepherd's claim to contested land.  It too ends with an imprecation:

[lines 82-86] ... yenta ceppuppa.t.taiyam ya_navoorum kuu.ti ceyta pa.t.taiyattukku turata:nka.l pa.n.niṉavaṉ kaaveerikkaraiyil kaa_raapacuvai ko.n.ta toocattilee poovaa_raakavum [witnesses listed here, engraver acknowledged, etc., ending line 96:] tu.nai ||
If any one injfures this grant executed by us all conjointly he shall go in the sin of having killed a black cow on the banks of the Kāvērī ... My Kamakshi help us!

And a few pages on, in another Setupati CP (pp. 67-68):
[lines 43-47] ... itarkku aaraailum akitam pa.n.ni_napeerka.l ke:nkaikkaraayilee kaaraampacuvaiko_n_na tocattileeyum pi_rumakkatipa.n.ni_na toocattileeyum maataapitaavai ko_n_na toocattileeyum poovaaraakavum |
He who injures this charity shall go in the sin of having, on the banks of Ganges, murdered a black cow, Brahmans, and his father and mother.

There are more besides — you get the picture.

P.S., "Punishment and expiation" can be downloaded here:

(Sekar yang baik, 
Saya berharap bahwa ini membantu.)


Timothy Lubin
Professor, Department of Religion
Lecturer in Law and Religion, School of Law
208 Baker Hall
Washington and Lee University
Lexington, Virginia 24450 USA

American Philosophical Society sabbatical fellow, 2010-2011

lubint at  |  |
office: +1 540.458.8146
mob: +1 540.461.3435

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