Sunday, 12 June 2011



People often connect Maaliankara with Malankara .I haven’t got any convincing evidence to show that the name is from Maliankara.I think this is another manipulation by some foolish Ramban (like Ramban Pattu)to give credibility to said 71/2 church story, Nampoothiri origin etc.
Please don’t misunderstand me; I am not assuming things rather I like to explain how I reach this conclusion.

The first reference related with Malankara is from Cosmos book. He refers ““”In the country called Maale where the pepper grows, there is also a church, “””” Now move on to the world spice trade in the olden times, you could get many reference clearly indicating it towards Maale and its port Muziris.
It is worth noting that Muziris is also referred to as Murachipattanam in Valmiki’s Ramayana as well as Vyasa’s Mahabharatha, asMuchiri inTamil Sangam’s literature, and as Muzirikode in the Jewish Copper Plate of Bhaskara Ravi Varma (around 1000 AD). Among foreign references, Muziris also finds mention in the First Century Natural History of Pliny the Elder, the Second Century Geographia of Ptolemy, the Second Century Muziris Papyrus, and the Fourth Century Tabula Peutingeriana.
“””””Then come Naura and Tyndis, the first markets of Damirica (Limyrike), and then Muziris and Nelcynda, which are now of leading importance. Tyndis is of the Kingdom of Cerobothra; it is a village in plain sight by the sea. Muziris, of the same Kingdom, abounds in ships sent there with cargoes from Arabia, and by the Greeks; it is located on a river, distant from Tyndis by river and sea five hundred stadia, and up the river from the shore twenty stadia””””””” – The Periplus of the Erythraean Sea,
Now come to some linguistics, you find many loan words in Hebrew from Tamil like Thuki, Arici etc.
“A number of South Dravidian words almost all of them geographic and dynasties names occur in such Greco-Roman sources as, Periplaus Maris Erythrael (circumnavigation of the Erythraen Sea) of 89 AD, and in the writing of Ptolemaeus of Naukratis of the 2nd century AD; it is probable that, Western language term for Rice. (Compare Italian riso, Latin oryza, Greek oryza) and ginger (compare Italian Zen zero, German ingwer, Greek zingiberis) are cultural loans from Old Tamil, in which they are arici and inciver, respectively.” (The New Encyclopedia Britannica, Volume 4, 15th Edition)”””

 Further more, in the Hebrew version “ivory, apes, ahalim and peacocks arrived at the Israeli port. 1 King: 10 (22). In the old Hebrew version, it is referred as: Ivory- shen; apes- kapi; ahalim- aghil, peacocks- tuki. These four are Tamil words.

Now consider the importance of Flora and Fauna of Maale. It is interesting to not that the struggle which took the nature lovers of Kerala and the whole world to protect Silent valley forest region from disaster. It is known to every one that new species of vegetation is discovered by scientists from this region which include many variety of pepper.
map of malabar by dutch (1655-1663)
                            Map of the Malabar Coast(1655-1663,Dutch)

Now come to some Geography/Geology, which clearly indicate that the land formation of Kerala was taken place through the centuries undergoing many changes. The structure of coastal land of Kerala was lastly formed by the great flood of 1341 A D, which created many islands, ports, cultivated lands and current form of our coastal area. It is true that most of the coastal land of Kerala today formed by recession of sea (by several miles) after that great flood. The sandy soil and the oceanic fossils indicate that most the present coastal belt of Kerala was under the sea during the formative years of Christian era. This being the situation only Kottayam/Kanjikkuzhi/Mannanam Historians can argue that Malankara coastal area and places were same at the beginning Christian era.
“””””” there is strong reason to suppose that in the early years of Christian era the sea coast ran along the eastern shore of the back water, which extend at present to over 40 miles from Changanacherry to Pallippuram and it is extremely doubtful if the long strip of land which forms its western bank, and on which stand the now flourishing ports of Cochin and Alleppey, had any existence then...............................................The coast line as known to Megasthenese, 4th century B.C., certainly ran along the eastern shore of the backwater. For he mentions Tropina, identified By Mr. Dutt with Triponitari or Tripoonithuray, a few miles in land from cochin and on the backwater side as lying on the sea-coast.”””””””(Ref: Discursive notes on Malabar and its Place names’by K.P.Padmanabha Menon, Published in Malabar Quarterly Review

map of southern india A.D.1610

Antique Map of southern India and Sri Lanka
Leipzig, H. Gross, 1610.

Now let us consider the place called Kodungalloor/Maaliankara where St. Thomas said to have been landed. It is astonishing that there is no reference with respect to Kodungaloor earlier than 14th century.All earlier references are related with Muchiri,Maale,Thundis, Naura,Nelconda, Ophir etc. If the Maliankara were such a place of importance at the time of St.Thomas or later there would have been some kind reference to this place .That is why this is a later day manipulation to suit vested interest.
The old Tamil language had local variation as referred by scholars “”””””At one time the languages spoken in the regions of Karnataka, Kongu and Malabar were respectively known as Karunaattut-tamil, Tulunattut-tamil and Malainattut-tamil.”””””” Malainattu-tamil indicate that Maale of Cosmus refered in Tamil as Malainadu which means the first word ‘Malai ‘refers to ‘Hill’ and the ‘Nadu’ refers land. If this is the case the word ‘Karai’ or ‘Kara’ etymologically derived from proto Dravidian’’’’ kar’’’ meaning shore, bank. This is itself sufficient to show that Malankara denotes the shore of place called Maale ie. Malankara Sabha means church existed in the shore of Maale/Malai.



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