Question on the etymology of a Vedic word

Palaniappa at aol.com Palaniappa at aol.com
Wed Mar 5 20:42:50 EST 1997


According to Comparative Dictionary of Indo-aryan Languages, the Sanskrit
word 'naavayati' meaning 'makes shout' is used by grammarians. It is related
to the Rig Vedic word 'na'vatee' meaning 'shouts, bellows'. The root is
supposed to be 'nu' meaning 'shout'.

Is this a widely accepted etymology among Sanskrit scolars? 

Dravidian Etymological Dictionary Revised edition has the following entry,
DEDR 3616.

Tamil. 'navil' ('navilv-', 'navinR'-) to say, tell, learn, utter, sound
loudly, sing, perform (as a dance); 'naviRRu' ('naviRRi-') to say, utter,
declare with authority; nuval ('nuvalv-', 'nuvanR-') to say, declare, utter;
n. word, saying; 'nuvaRci', saying, utterance. ? Toda. 'nOw' voice, song. DED
2993.

In Classical Tamil poems, one of the meanings of 'nuval' is the the sounding
of drums announcing the onset of battle.

Is this an accidental similarity or the Indo-Aryan and Dravidian words are
etymologically related? Any help from Indologists? Thanks.

S. Palaniappan










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