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(lotus), and Narayana. The chakra is stamped thrice
on the abdomen above the navel, twice on the right flank,
twice on the right side of the chest above the nipple,
twice on the right arm, once on the right temple, once
on the left side of the chest, and once on the left arm.
The chank is stamped twice on the right side of the


chest, in two places on the left arm, and once on the left
temple. The gatha is stamped in two places on the
right arm, twice on the chest, and in one spot on the
forehead. The padma is stamped twice on the left arm,
and twice on the left side of the chest. Narayana is
stamped on all places where other mudra marks have
been made. Sometimes it is difficult to put on all the
marks after the daily morning bath. In such cases, a
single mudra mark, containing all the five mudras, is
made to suffice. Some regard the chakra mudra as
sufficient on occasions of emergency.

The god Hanuman (the monkey god) is specially
reverenced by Madhvas, who call him Mukyapranadevaru
(the chief god).

V. Tulu. The Tulu-speaking Brahmans are, in
their manners and customs, closely allied to the
Carnatakas. Their sub-divisions are

1. Shivalli.

2. Kota.

3. Kandavara.

4. Havik or Haiga.

5. Panchagrami.

6. Koteswar.

The following interesting account of the Tulu
Brahmans is given by Mr. H. A. Stuart * :

" All Tulu Brahmin chronicles agree in ascribing the
creation of Malabar and Canara, or Kerala, Tuluva, and
Haiga, to Parasu Rama, who reclaimed from the sea as
much land as he could cover by hurling his battle-axe
from the top of the Western Ghauts. According to
Tulu traditions, after a quarrel with Brahmins who used
to come to him periodically from Ahi-Kshetra, Parasu
Rama procured new Brahmins for the reclaimed tract
by taking the nets of some fishermen, and making a
number of Brahminical threads, with which he invested

* Manual of the South Canara district.


the fishermen, and thus turnedj ; them into Brahmins,
and retired to the mountains to meditate, after informing
them that, if they were in distress and called on him, he
would come to their aid. After the lapse of some time,
during which they suffered no distress, they were curious
to know if Parasu Rama would remember them, and
called upon him in order to find out. He promptly
appeared, but punished their thus mocking him by
cursing them, and causing them to revert to their old
status of Sudras. After this, there were no Brahmins in
the land till Tulu Brahmins were brought from Ahi-
Kshetra by Mayur Varma of the Kadamba dynasty. A
modified form of the tradition states that Parasu Rama
gave the newly reclaimed land to Naga and Machi
Brahmins, who were not true' Brahmins, and were turned
out or destroyed by fishermen and Holeyas (Pariahs), who
held the country till the Tulu Brahmins were introduced
by Mayur Varma. All traditions unite in attributing the
introduction of the Tulu Brahmins of the present day to
Mayur Varma, but they vary in details connected with
the manner in which they obtained a firm footing in the
land. One account says that Habashika, chief of the
Koragas (Pariahs), drove out Mayur Varma, but was in
turn expelled by Mayur Varma's son, or son-in-law,
Lokaditya of Gokarnam, who brought Brahmins from
Ahi-Kshetra and settled them in thirty-two villages.
Another makes Mayur Varma himself the invader of the
country, which till then had remained in the possession
of the Holeyas (Pariahs) and fishermen who had turned
out Parasu Rama's Brahmins. Mayur Varma and the
Brahmins whom he had brought from Ahi-Kshetra were
again driven out by Nanda, a Holeya chief, whose son
Chandra Sayana had, however, learned respect for
Brahmins frjom his mother, who had been a dancing-girl


in a temple. His admiration for them became so great
that he not only brought back the Brahmins, but actually
made over all his authority to them, and reduced his
people to the position of slaves. A third account makes
Chandra Sayana, not a son of a Holeya king, but a
descendant of Mayur Varma and a conqueror of the
Holeya king. Nothing is known from other sources of
Lokaditya, Habashika, or Chandra Sayana, but inscrip-
tions speak to Mayur Varma being the founder of the
dynasty of the Kadambas of Banavasi in North Canara.
His date is usually put down at about 750 A.D. The
correctness of the traditions, which prevail in Malabar
as well as in Ganara, assigning the introduction of
Brahmins to the West Coast to Mayur Varma who was
in power about 750 A.D., is to some extent corroborated
by the fact that Brahmins attested the Malabar Perumal's
grant to the Christians in 774 A.D., but not that to the
Jews about 700 A.D. The Brahmins are said to have
been brought from Ahi-Kshetra, on the banks of the
Godavari, but it is not clear what connection a Kadamba
of Banavasi could have with the banks of the Godavari,
and there may be something in the suggestion made in
the North Kanara Gazetteer that Ahi-Kshetra is merely
a sanskritised form of Haiga or the land of snakes.
The tradition speaks of the Brahmins having been
brought by Lokaditya from Gokarnam, which is in the
extreme north of Haiga, and in the local history of the
Honalli Matha in Sunda in North Canara, Gokarnam is
spoken of as being Ahi-Kshetra. Gokarnam is believed
to have been a Brahmin settlement in very early times,
and there was probably a further influx of Brahmins
there as Muhammadan conquest advanced in the north.
" The class usually styled Tulu Brahmins at the
present day are the Shivalli Brahmins, whose


head-quarters are at Udipi, and who are most numerous
in the southern part of the district, but the Kota, Kotesh-
war, and Haiga or Havika Brahmins are all branches
of the same, the differences between them having arisen
since their settlement in Canara ; and, though they now
talk Canarese in common with the people of other parts
to the north of the Sitanadi river, their religious works
are still written in the old Tulu-Malayalam character.
Tulu Brahmins, who have settled in Malabar in com-
paratively late years, are known as Embrantris, and
treated as closely allied to the Nambutiris, whose
traditions go back to Mayur Varma. Some families of
Shivalli and Havika Brahmins in the southern or
Malayalam portion of the district talk Malayalam, and
follow many of the customs of the Malabar or Nambutiri
Brahmins. Many of the thirty-two villages in which the
Brahmins are said to have been settled by Mayur Varma
are still the most important centres of Brahminism.
Notably may be mentioned Shivalli or Udipi, Kota and
Koteshwar, which have given names to the divisions of
Tulu Brahmins of which these villages are respectively
the head-quarters. When the Brahmins were introduced
by Mayur Varma they are said to have been followers of
Bhattacharya, but they soon adopted the tenets of the
great Malayalam Vedantic teacher Sankaracharya, who
is ordinarily believed to have been born at Cranganore
in Malabar in the last quarter of the eighth century, that
is, soon after the arrival of the Brahmins on the west
coast. Sankaracharya is known as the preacher of the
Advaita (non-dual) philosophy, which, stated briefly, is
that all living beings are one with the supreme spirit, and
absorption may finally be obtained by the constant
renunciation of material in favour of spiritual pleasure.
This philosophy, however, was not sufficient for the


common multitude, and his system included, for weaker
minds, the contemplation of the first cause through a
multitude of inferior deities, and, as various manifesta-
tions of Siva and his consort Parvati, he found a place
for all the most important of the demons worshipped by
the early Dravidians whom the Brahmins found on the
West Coast, thus facilitating the spread of Hinduism
throughout all classes. That the conversion of the
Bants and Billavas, and other classes, took place at a
very early date may be inferred from the fact that, though
the great bulk of the Tulu Brahmins of South Canara
adopted the teaching of the Vaishnavite reformer
Madhavacharya, who lived in the thirteenth century,
most of the non- Brahmin Hindus in the district class
themselves as Shaivites to this day. Sankaracharya
founded the Sringeri Matha in Mysore near the borders
of the Udipi taluk, the guru of which is the spiritual head
of such of the Tulu Brahmins of South Canara as have
remained Smarthas or adherents of the teaching of
Sankaracharya. Madhavacharya is believed to have
been born about 1199 A.D. at Kalianpur, a few miles
from Udipi. He propounded the Dvaita or dual philo-
sophy, repudiating the doctrine of oneness and final
absorption held by ordinary Vaishnavites as well as by
the followers of Sankaracharya. The attainment of a
place in the highest heaven is to be secured, according to
Madhavacharya's teaching, not only by the renunciation
of material pleasure, but by the practice of virtue in
thought, word and deed. The moral code of Madhava-
charya is a high one, and his teaching is held by some
not ordinary Hindus of course to have been affected
by the existence of the community of Christians at
Kalianpur mentioned by Cosmos Indico Pleustes in
the seventh century. Madhavacharya placed the worship


of Vishnu above that of Siva, but there is little bitterness
between Vaishnavites and Shaivites in South Canara,
and there are temples in which both are worshipped
under the name of Shankara Narayana. He denied that
the spirits worshipped by the early Dravidians were
manifestations of Siva's consort, but he accorded sanction
to their worship as supernatural beings of a lower order.
" Shivalli Brahmins. The Tulu-speaking Brahmins
of the present day are almost all followers of Madhava-
charya, though a few remain Smarthas, and a certain
number follow what is known as the Bhagavat Sampra-
dayam, and hold that equal honour is due to both Vishnu
and Siva. They are now generally called Shivalli
Brahmins, their head-quarters being at Udipi or Shivalli,
a few miles from Madhavacharya's birth-place. Here
Madhavacharya is said to have resided for some time,
and composed thirty-seven controversial works, after
which he set out on a tour. The temple of Krishna at
Udipi is said to have been founded by Madhavacharya
himself, who set up in it the image of Krishna originally
made by Arjuna, and miraculously obtained by him
from a vessel wrecked on the coast of Tuluva. In it he
also placed one of the three salagrams presented to him
by the sage Veda Vyasa. Besides the temple at Udipi,
he established eight Mathas or sacred houses, each
presided over by a sanyasi or swami. [Their names are
Sodhe, Krishnapur, Sirur, Kanur, Pejavar, Adamar,
Palamar, and Puththige.] These exist to this day, and
each swami in turn presides over the temple of
Krishna for a period of two years, and spends the
intervening fourteen years touring through Canara and
the adjacent parts of Mysore, levying contributions
from the faithful for his next two years of office, which
are very heavy, as he has to defray not only the expenses



of public worship and of the temple and Matha establish-
ments, but must also feed every Brahmin who comes to
the place. The following description of a Matha visited
by Mr. Walhouse * gives a very good idea of what one
of these buildings is like : ' The building was two-
storeyed, enclosing a spacious quadrangle round which
ran a covered verandah or cloister ; the wide porched
entrance opened into a fine hall supported by massive
pillars with expanding capitals handsomely carved ; the
ceiling was also wooden, panelled and ornamented with
rosettes and pendants as in baronial halls, and so were
the solid doors. Within these was an infinity of rooms,
long corridors lined with windowless cells, apartments
for meditation and study, store-rooms overflowing with
all manner of necessaries, granaries, upper rooms with
wide projecting windows latticed instead of glass with
pierced wood-work in countless tasteful patterns, and in
the quadrangle there was a draw-well and small temple,
while a large yard behind contained cattle of all kinds
from a goat to an elephant. All things needful were
here gathered together. Outside sat pilgrims, poor
devotees, and beggars waiting for the daily dole, and
villagers were continually arriving with grain, vegetables,
etc. ' The periodical change of the swami presiding
over the temple of Krishna is the occasion of a great
festival known as the Pariyaya, when Udipi is filled to
overflowing by a large concourse of Madhvas, not only
from the district but from more distant parts, especially
from the Mysore territory. [A very imposing object in
the temple grounds, at the time of my visit in 1907, was
an enormous stack of fire-wood for temple purposes.]
The following is a description t of a festival at the Udipi

* Fraser's Magazine, May 1875. t Loc>


Krishna temple witnessed by Mr. Walhouse : ' Near
midnight, when the moon rode high in a cloudless
heaven, his (Krishna's) image not the very sacred one,
..which may not be handled, but a smaller duplicate was
brought forth by four Brahmins and placed under a
splendid canopy on a platform laid across two large
canoes. The whole square of the tank (pond) was lit up
by a triple line of lights. Small oil cressets at close
intervals, rockets and fireworks ascended incessantly,
and the barge, also brilliantly lit up, and carrying a band
of discordant music, and Brahmins fanning the image with
silver fans, was punted round and round the tank amid
loud acclamations. After this, the image was placed
in a gorgeous silver-plated beaked palanquin, and borne
solemnly outside the temple to the great idol car that
stood dressed up and adorned with an infinity of tinsel,
flags, streamers and flower wreaths. On this it was
lifted, and placed in a jewel shrine amidst a storm of
applause and clapping of hands these seem the only
occasions when Hindus do clap hands and then, with
all the company of Brahmins headed by the swamis
marching in front, followed by flambeaus and wild
music, the car was slowly hauled by thousands of
votaries round the square which was illuminated by three
lines of lights, ascending at intervals into pyramids. A
pause was made half-way, when there was a grand
display of rockets, fire fountains and wheels, and two
lines of camphor and oiled cotton laid along the middle
of the road were kindled and flamed up brilliantly.
Then the car moved on to the entrance of the temple,
and the god's outing was accomplished.' Another famous
temple of the Shivallis is Subramanya at the foot of the
ghauts on the Coorg border, and here also Madhava-
charya deposited one of Veda Vyasa's salagrams. It


existed before his time, however, and, as the name
indicates, it is dedicated to the worship of Siva. In
addition to this, it is the principal centre of serpent
worship in the district.

" Many of the Shivalli Brahmins are fair com-
plexioned with well-cut intelligent features. A number
of them own land which they cultivate by tenants or by
hired labourers, and there are several wealthy families
with large landed properties, but the great bulk of them
are either astronomers, astrologers, tantris, purohitas,
worshippers in temples, or professional beggars. They
have been backward in availing themselves of English
education, and consequently not many of them are to be
found holding important posts under Government or in
the professions, but a few have come to the front in late
years. A good many of them are village accountants
and teachers in village schools. The women, as is
usually the case among all classes, are fairer than the
men. Their education is even more limited, but they
are said to be well trained for the discharge of house-
hold and religious duties. They wear the cloth falling
as low as the feet in front, but not usually so low behind,
especially on festive occasions, the end being passed
between the legs and tucked into the fold of the cloth
round the waist. Like all Brahmin women in Canara,
they are fond of wearing sweet-scented flowers in their
hair. The language of the Shivalli Brahmins is Tulu,
except to the north of the Sltanadi river, where close
intercourse with the ruling Canarese classes above the
ghauts for several centuries has led to the adoption of
that language by all classes. Their religious books are
in Sanskrit, and, even north of the Sltanadi river, they
are written in the old Tulu-Malayalam character. Their
houses are all neat, clean, and provided with verandahs,


and a yard in front, in which stands, in a raised pot, a
plant of the tulasi or sacred basil. Some of the houses
of the old families are really large and substantial build-
ings, with an open courtyard in the centre. Men and
widows bathe the whole body every day before break-
fast, but married women bathe only up to the neck, it
being considered inauspicious for them to bathe the
head also. In temples and religious houses, males bathe
in the evening also. An oil bath is taken once a week.
They are, of course, abstainers from animal food and
spirituous liquors, and a prohibition extends to some
other articles, such as onions, garlic, mushrooms, etc.
At times of marriages, deaths or initiations, it is usual
to give feasts, which may be attended by all Dravida
Brahmins. The Shivallis have 252 gotras, and the
names of the following seem to be of totemistic origin :

Kudrettaya, from kudre, a horse, taya, belonging to.

Talitaya, palmyra palm.

Manolitaya, name of a vegetable.

Shunnataya, chunam, lime.

Kalambitaya, a kind of box.

Nellitaya, the Indian gooseberry.

Goli, banyan tree.

Ane, elephant.

" These names were obtained from one of the eight
swamis or gurus of the Udipi math, and according to
him they have no totemistic force at the present day.
Girls must be married before maturity, and the ordinary
age now-a-days is between five and eleven. The age
of the bridegroom is usually between fifteen and five and
twenty. A maternal uncle's daughter can be married
without consulting any horoscope, and during the
marriage ceremonies it is customary for a bridegroom's
sister to obtain from him a formal promise that, if he
has a daughter, he will give her in marriage to her son.


Widows take off all their ornaments, and wear a red or
white cloth. They ought not to attend any auspicious
ceremonies or festivals, but of late years there has been
a tendency to relax the severity of the restrictions on
a widow's freedom, and a young widow is allowed to
keep her head unshaven, and to wear a few ornaments.
A few Shivallis in the Malayalam-speaking portion of
the Kasaragod taluk follow the customs and manners
of the Malayalam Brahmins, and amongst these a girl
does not lose caste by remaining unmarried until she
comes of age.

" Koteshwar Brahmins are a small body, who take
their name from Koteshwar in the Coondapoor taluk.
They are practically the same as the Shivalli Brahmins,
except that, like all classes in that taluk, they talk

" Havlka, Haviga, or Haiga Brahmins are the
descendants of the section of the Brahmins brought in
by Mayur Varma, who settled within the tract known
as Haiga, which comprised the southern part of North
Canara and the extreme northern part of South Canara.
They did not, like the Shivallis, adopt the teaching of
Madhavacharya, but remained followers of Sankara-
charya, and they now speak Canarese, though their
religious and family records are written in old Tulu-
Malayalam character. Though originally of the same
stock, a distinction has arisen between them and the
Shivalli Brahmins, and they do not intermarry, though
they may eat together. A number of Havlka Brahmins
are to be found scattered throughout South Canara,
engaged for the most part in the cultivation of areca
palm gardens, in which they are very expert. A very
well-to-do colony of them is to be found in the neighbour-
hood of Vittal in the Kasaragod taluk, where they grow


areca nuts which are valued only second to those
grown in the magane of the Coondapoor taluk above
the ghauts. The Havika Brahmins, perhaps owing to
their residing for many generations in the comparatively
cool shade of the areca nut gardens, are specially fair
even for west coast Brahmins. This fairness of com-
plexion is particularly noticeable in the women, who
do not differ much in their manners and customs from
the Shivalli Brahmin women, except that they take a
prominent part in the work of the gardens, and never
on any occasion wear the end of their cloth passed
through the legs and tucked up behind. The Havik
widows are allowed more freedom than in most other
classes. Some Havik Brahmins in the Malayalam
portion of the Kasaragod taluk have, like the Shivallis
in the same locality, adopted the language and customs
of the Malayali Brahmins.

" Kota Brahmins, so called from a village in the
northern part of the Udipi taluk, are, like the Haviks,
Smarthas or followers of Sankaracharya, and now
speak Canarese, but the breach between them and the
Shivallis is not so wide, as intermarriages occasionally
take place. In the Coondapoor taluk and the northern
part of the Udipi taluk, the Kotas occupy a place in the
community corresponding to that taken by the Shivallis
throughout the rest of the district.

" Saklapuris, of whom there are a few in the district,
are what may be called a dissenting sect of Havlkas
who, a few years ago, renounced their allegiance to the
Ramchandrapura matha in favour of one at Saklapuri
near the boundary between North and South Canara.
Like the Havlkas, they speak Canarese.

" Kandavaras obtain their name from the village of
Kandavar in the Coondapoor taluk. They are commonly


known as Udapas, and they all belong to one gotram,
that of Visvamitra. They are, therefore, precluded
from marrying within the caste, and take their wives
and husbands from the ranks of the Shivalli Brahmins.
They are, indeed, said to be the descendants of a Shivalli
Brahmin who settled in Kandavar about seven or eight
centuries ago. The head of the Annu Udapa family,
which is called after this ancestor, is the hereditary head
of the caste, and presides over all panchayats or caste
councils. They speak Canarese. Their title is Udapa
or Udpa."

In a note on the Brahmans of South Canara, Mr.
T. Raghaviah writes as follows*: "The sentimental
objection to manual labour, which is so predominant in
the East Coast Brahmin, and the odium attached to it in
this country, which has crystallised into the religious
belief that, if a Brahmin cultivates with his own hand,
the fire of his hand would burn down all that he touches,
have entirely disappeared in South Canara. In the
rural parts of the district, and especially at the foot of
the Western Ghauts, it is an exceedingly common
sight to see Brahmins engaging themselves in digging,
ploughing or levelling their lands, trimming their water-
courses or ledges, raising anicuts across streams, and
doing a hundred other items of manual work connected
with agriculture. Brahmin women busy themselves with
cutting green leaves for manure, making and storing
manure and carrying it to their lands or trees, and
Brahmin boys are employed in tending and grazing
their own cattle. This is so much the case with a class
of Brahmins called Haviks that there is a proverb that
none but a Havik can raise an areca garden. You find,

* Indian Review, VII, 1906.
2 5


as a matter of fact, that nearly all the extensive areca
plantations in the district are in the hands of either the
Havik Brahmins or the Chitpavans allied much to the
Mahratta Brahmins of Bombay. These plantations are
managed by these Brahmins, and new ones are raised
with the aid of a handful of Holeyas, or often without
even such aid."

VI. Oriya. The Oriya Brahmans of the Ganjam
district belong to the Utkala section of the Pancha
Gaudas. Between them and the Pancha Dravidas there
is very considerable difference. None of the sections of
the Pancha Dravidas adopt the gosha system as regards
their females, whereas Oriya Brahman women are kept
gosha (in seclusion). Occasionally they go out to bring
water, and, if on their way they come across any males,
they go to the side of the road, and turn their backs
to the passers-by. It is noted, in the Manual of the
Vizagapatam district, that Oriya Brahmans " eat many
kinds of meat, as pea fowl, sambur (deer), barking deer,

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