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who lived in the fourteenth century A.D., composed the
Basava Purana and the Panditaradhya Charitra, and the
brothers Piduparthi Somanatha and the Basavakavi, who
lived in the sixteenth century, composed other religious

Aradhyas marry among themselves, and occasionally
take girls in marriage from certain of the Niyogi sub-
divisions of the Northern Circars. This would seem to
show that they were themselves Niyogis, prior to their
conversion. They do not intermarry with Aruvglu Ni-
yogis. Unlike other Brahmans, they bury their dead in
a sitting posture. They observe death pollution for ten
days, and perform the ekodishta and other Brahminical
ceremonies fqr their progenitors. They perform annu-
ally, not the Brahminical sradha, but the aradhana. In
the latter, there is no apasavyam (wearing the sacred
thread from right to left), and no use of gingelly seeds
and dharba grass. Nor is there homam (raising the
sacrificial fire), parvanam (offering of rice-balls), or obla-
tion of water. Widows do not have their heads shaved.


The title of the Aradbyas is always Aradhya.

Arakala. A small class of cultivators, recorded
mainly from the Kurnool district. The name is possibly
derived from araka, meaning a plough with bullocks, or
from arakadu, a cultivator.

Arampukatti. The name, denoting those who
tie flower-buds or prepare garlands, of a sub-division
of Vellalas.

Aranadan, See Ernadan.

Arane (lizard). An exogamous sub-sept of Kappi-

Arashina (turmeric). A gotra or exogamous sept
of Agasa, Kurni, Kuruba, and Odde. The equivalent
Pasupula occurs as an exogamous sept of Devanga. In
Southern India, turmeric (Curcuma] is commonly called
saffron (Crocus], Turmeric enters largely into Hindu
ceremonial. For example, the practice of smearing the
face with it is very widespread among females, and,
thinking that it will give their husbands increase of years,
women freely bathe themselves with turmeric water.
The use of water, in which turmeric has been infused,
and by which they give the whole body a bright yellow
colour, is prescribed to wives as a mark of the conjugal
state, and forbidden to widows.* To ward off the evil
eye, a vessel containing turmeric water and other things
is waved in front of the bridal couple at weddings. Or
they are bathed in turmeric water, which they pour over
each other. The tali or bottu (gold marriage badge) is
attached to a cotton thread dyed with turmeric, and,
among some castes, the tying together of the hands of
the bride and bridegroom with such a thread is the bind-
ing portion of the ceremony.

* Ellis. Kural.


Arasu or Rajpinde. " This caste," Mr. Lewis
Rice writes (1877): * "are relatives of or connected
with the Rajahs of Mysore. During the life-time of the
late Maharaja, they were divided into two factions in
consequence of the refusal of thirteen families headed by
the Dalavayi (the chief of the female branch) to pay
respect to an illegitimate son of His Highness. The
other eighteen families consented to the Rajah's wishes,
and treat the illegitimate branch, called Komarapatta, as
equals. The two divisions intermarry and eat together,
and the family quarrel, though serious at the time, is not
likely to be permanent. They are employed chiefly
under Government and in agriculture, most of the former
being engaged in the palace at Mysore. Rajpindes are
both Vishnavites and Sivites, and their priests are both
Brahmans and Lingayat Waders."

In the Madras Census Report, 1891, Arasu ( = Raja
or king) is given as a sub-division of the Tamil Pallis and
Paraiyans. Urs appears as a contracted form of Arasu in
the names of the Mysore royal family, e.g., Kantaraj Urs.

Arathi. The name, indicating a wave offering to
avert the evil eye, of an exogamous sept of Kuruba.

Arati (plantain tree). An exogamous sept of

Arava. Arava, signifying Tamil, has been recorded
as a sub-division of some Telugu classes, e.g., Golla and
Velama. The name, however, refers to Tamil Idaiyans
and Vellalas, who have settled in the Telugu country,
and are known respectively as Arava Golla and Arava
Velama. In some places in the Telugu country, Tamil
Paraiyans, employed as servants under Europeans, horse-
keepers, etc., are known as Arava Malalu (Malas). The

* Mysore and Coorg Gazetteer, 1876-78.


Irulas of the North Arcot district are, in like manner,
sometimes called Arava Yanadis. Arava also occurs as
a division of Tigalas, said to be a section of the Tamil
Pallis, who have settled in Mysore. An ingenious
suggestion has been made that Arava is derived from
ara, half, vayi, mouthed, in reference to the defective
Tamil alphabet, or to the termination of the words being
mostly in consonants.

Aravan.- Recorded, in the Travancore Census
Report, 1901, as a sub-division of Nayar.

Arayan. See Valan.

Archaka. Archaka, or Umai Archaka, is a title of
Occhans, who are priests at temples of Grama Devatas
(village deities).

Are. A synonym for Marathi. The name occurs
as a sub-division of Kunchigar and Kudubi. In South
Canara Arya Kshatri occurs as the equivalent of Are,
and, in the Telugu country, Are Kapu refers to Marathi
cultivators. Arya Kuttadi is a Tamil synonym of
Marathi Dommaras. Concerning the Ares, Mr. H. G.
Stuart writes as follows. * " Of the total number of
6,809 Are's, 4,373 are found in South Canara, Bellary
and Anantapur, and these are true Are's. Of the rest I
am not able to speak with certainty, as the term Arya,
which is a synonym of Are, is also used as an equivalent
of Marathi, and sometimes in a still wider sense. The
true Ares are husbandmen of Maratha origin. They
wear the sacred thread, have Brahmans as their priests,
and give allegiance to the head of the Sringeri Mutt.
Marriage of girls takes place either before or after
puberty, and the remarriage of widows is not allowed.
A husband may divorce his wife for adultery, but a wife

* Madras Census Report, 1891.

57 ARI

cannot divorce her husband. When the guilt of a woman
is proved, and the sanction of the Guru obtained, the
husband performs the act of divorce by cutting a
pumpkin in two at a place where three ways meet.
The use of animal food is allowed, but intoxicating
liquors are forbidden." The Are's of South Canara,
Mr. Stuart writes further, * " usually speak Marathi or
Konkani, but in the Kasaragod taluk, and possibly
in other parts too, they speak Canarese. Their exoga-
mous septs are called manathanas. They use the dhare
form of marriage (see Bant), but the pot contains a
mixture of water, milk, ghee (clarified butter), honey
and curds instead of the usual plain water."

The Marathi-speaking Argyavaru or Aryavaru of the
South Canara district follow the makkala santana law
of inheritance (from father to son). For ceremonial
purposes, they engage Shivalli Brahmans. An interest-
ing feature of the marriage rites is that the bridegroom
makes a pretence of going to a battle-field to fight,
presumably to show that he is of Kshatriya descent.
The ceremony is called dandal jatai. The bridegroom
ties a bead on the neck of the bride if of the Powar
sept, and a disc if of the Edar sept. The Argyavaru eat
fowls and fish. The former are killed after certain
mantrams (prayers) have been uttered, and, if a priest is
available, it is his duty to despatch the bird. The caste
deity is Ammanoru (Durga), in the worship of whom the
Areyavaru, like other Maratha castes, employ Gondala

Are (Bauhinia racemosa). A gStra of Kurni.

Ari. The Aris or DOtans are described, in the
Travancore Census Report, 1901, as a " small but

* Manual of the South Canara district.

ARI 58

interesting community confined to a village in the Tovala
taluk. By traditional occupation they are the Ambala-
vasis of the Saivaite temple of Darsanamkoppa. They
are strict vegetarians, wear the Brahminical thread,
perform all the Brahminical ceremonies under the guid-
ance of Brahman priests, and claim a position equal to
that of the Aryappattars. But they are not allowed to
dine with the Brahmans, or to enter the mandapa in
front of the garbhagriha, the inner sanctuary of a
Hindu shrine. Their dress and ornaments are like
those of the Tamil Brahmans, and their language is
Tamil. Their period of pollution, however, is as long
as fifteen days."

Ari (ebony). An exogamous sept of Kuruba.

Arigala.- Arigala, denoting a dish carried in pro-
cession, occurs as an exogamous sept of Mutracha.
Arigala and Arika, both meaning the millet Paspalum
scrobiculatum, are septs of Jatapu and Panta Reddi.
The latter may not use the grain as food.

Arikuravan.- Recorded, in the Travancore Census
Report, 1901, as a sub-division of Nayar.

Arisi. A sub-division of Savara.

Ariyar. Ariyar or Ariyanattu Chetti is given as a
caste title by Pattanavans.

Ariyur. AriyOr or AriviyOr is the name of a sub-
division of Nattukottai Chettis.

Arli (Ficus religiosa}. An exogamous sept of

Arudra (lady-bird). An exogamous sept of Kalingi.

Arupathukatchi (sixty house section). A sub-
division of Valluvan.

Arupattanalu Taleikattu (sixty-four, who covered
their heads). A sub-division of Chetti.


Aruththukattatha. The name, meaning those
who do not tie the tali a second time, of a section of
Paraiyans who do not allow the remarriage of widows.

Aruva. The Aruvas are an interesting caste of
cultivators along the sea-coast in the Berhampur taluk
of Ganjam. They say that they are descended from the
offspring of alliances between Patanis (Muhammadans)
and Oriya women. Like other Oriya castes, they have
a number of titles, e.g., Nayako, Patro, Podhano, Ponda,
Mondolo, and Mollana, some of which seem to be
exogamous, and there are also numerous exogamous
septs or bamsams. The headman is styled Nayako,
and he is assisted by a Bhollobhaya. Both these
offices are hereditary. The Aruvas say that they belong
to two Vedas, viz., the males to Atharva Veda, and the
females to Yajur Ve"da. Muhammadans are believed by
them to be Atharvavedis.

A member of the caste, called Mollana, officiates on
ceremonial occasions. A pure Oriya casteman will not
allow his son to marry his sister's daughter, but this is
permitted in most places by the Aruvas. The marriage
ceremonial, except in a few points of detail, conforms
to the general Oriya type. On the day before the
wedding, a milk-post of bamboo is erected, and in front
of it a new cloth, and various articles for worship are
placed. When the fingers of the contracting couple are
linked together, and at other stages of the marriage
rites, the Mollana recites certain formulae, in which the
words Bismillahi and Allah occur.

The dead are always buried. In former days, stone
slabs, with Arabic or Hindustani legends in Oriya
characters inscribed on them, used to be set up over the
grave. For these, two sticks are now substituted. The
corpse of a dead person is sewn up in a kind of sack.


As it is being lowered into the grave, the Mollana recites
formulae, and those present throw earth over it before
the grave is filled in. They then take their departure,
and the Mollana, standing on one leg, recites further
formulae. On the following day, bitter food, consisting
of rice and margosa (Melia Azadirachtd] leaves, is
prepared, and given to the agnates. On the third day
after death, the burial-ground is visited, and, after water
has been poured over the grave, a cloth is spread thereon.
On this relations of the deceased throw earth and food.
A purificatory ceremony, in which ghi (clarified butter)
is touched, is performed on the fifteenth day. On the
fortieth day, the Mollana officiates at a ceremony in
which food is offered to the dead person.

The Aruvas do not take part in any Muhammadan
ceremonial, and do not worship in mosques. Most of
them are Paramarthos, and all worship various Hindu
deities and Takuranis (village gods). At their houses,
the god is represented by a mass of mud of conical
shape, with an areca nut on the top of it. In recent
times, a number of Aruva families, owing to a dispute
with the Mollana, do not employ him for their cere-
monials, in which they follow the standard Oriya type.
They neither interdine nor intermarry with other
sections of the community, and have become an in-
dependent section thereof.

Arya.- Arya or Ariya (noble) occurs as a class of
Pattar Brahmans, a division of SamagaYas, and an exo-
gamous sept of Kurubas. Some Pattanavans call them-
selves Ariya Nattu Chetti (Chettis of the country of
chiefs) Ariyar, or Ayyayirath Thalaivar (the five thou-
sand chiefs).

Asadi. The Asadis of the Bellary district are
summed up, in the Madras Census Report, 1901, as "a


sub-caste of Mala or Holeya, which, in Bellary, are
almost interchangeable terms. They are prostitutes
and dancers." Among the Madigas, men called Asa"di,
who have undergone an initiation ceremony, go about, in
company with the Matangis (dedicated prostitutes), play-
ing on an instrument called the chaudike, and singing
the praises and reciting the story of Ellamma. (See

Asan (teacher). The title of Variyans, who have
held the hereditary position of tutors in noblemen's
families. Also a title of Pisharati and Kanisan.

Asari. In most parts of the Madras Presidency,
Mr. H. A. Sturat writes, " Asari (or AchaYi) is synony-
mous with Kammalan, and may denote any of the five
artizan castes, but in Malabar it is practically confined
to the carpenter caste. The Asari of Malabar is the
Brahman of the Kammala castes. The Kammala castes
generally pollute Nayars by approaching within twelve
feet, and Brahmans by coming within thirty-six feet ;
but an Asari with his measuring rod in his hand has the
privilege of approaching very near, and even entering
the houses of higher castes without polluting them.
This exception may have arisen out of necessity." At
the census, 1901, some SSyakkarans (Tamil dyers) re-
turned Asari as a title.

In a Government office, a short time ago, the head
clerk, a Brahman named Rangachari, altered the spell-
ing of the name of a Kammalan from Velayudachari to
Velayudasari in the office books, on the ground that the
former looked Brahmanical.

Ashtakshari (eight syllables). A sub-division of
Satanis, who believe in the efficacy of the eight syllables
om-na-mo-na-ra-ya-na-ya in ensuring eternal bliss. The
name ashtabhukkulu, or those who eat the eight


greedily, also occurs as a sub-division of the same

Ashtalohi. The name, meaning workers in eight
metals, of a small class of Oriya artizans. According to
one version the eight metals are gold, silver, bell-metal,
copper, lead, tin, iron, and brass ; according to another,
gold, silver, copper, tin, lead, load-stone, iron, and steel.
Ashtikurissi. Ashtikurissi (ashti, a bone) or Atti-
kurissi is an occupational sub-division of Nayars and
Marans, who officiate at the funerals of NambOtiri
Brahmans and Nayars, and help in collecting the re-
mains of the bones after cremation.

Asili. The name for Telugu toddy-drawers in the
Cuddapah district. (See Idiga.)

Asupani. An occupational name for Marans who
play on the temple musical instruments asu and pani.
Asvo (horse). An exogamous sept of Ghasi,
Atagara or Hatagara. A sub-division of

Aththi (Ficus glomerata). An exogamous sept of

Atikunnan. Recorded, in the Travancore Census
Report, 1901, as a sub-division of Nayar.

Atreya. A Brahmanical gotra of Bhatrazus.
Atreyas are descendants of Atri, a rishi who is regarded
by some as one of the ten Prajapatis of Manu.
Atta (mother). A sub-division of Pallan.
Attangarai (river-bank). A sub-division of Konga

Attikankana (cotton marriage thread). A sub-
division of Kurubas, who tie a cotton thread round the
wrist at weddings.

Atumpatram. A name, meaning an object which
dances, for Deva-dasis in Travancore.


Aunvallur (possessors of cattle). A fanciful name
for Idaiyans.

Avaru. A synonym of Agaru.

Aviri (Indigofera tinctoria], An exogamous sept
of Padma Sale's, who use indigo in the manufacture of
coloured cloth fabrics.

Avisa (Sesbania grandiflora). A gotra of Medara.

Avu (snake). An exogamous sept of Kuruba.

Avula (cow), An exogamous sept of Balija, Boya,
Golla, Kapu, Korava, Mutracha, and Yerukala.

Ayar (cow-herd). A synonym or sub-division of
Idaiyan and Kolayan.

Ayodhya (Oudh). A sub-division of Kapus, who
say that they originally lived in Oudh.

Azhati. Recorded, in the Travancore Census
Report, 1901, as a synonym of Pisharati.

Badaga. As the Todas are the pastoral, and the
Kotas the artisan tribe of the Nllgiris, so the agricultural
element on these hills is represented by the Badagas (or,
as they are sometimes called, Burghers). Their number
was returned, at the census, 1901, as 34,178 against
1,267 Kotas, and 807 Todas. Though the primary
occupation of the Badagas is agriculture, there are
among their community, schoolmasters, clerks, public
works contractors, bricklayers, painters, carpenters, saw-
yers, tailors, gardeners, forest guards, barbers, washer-
men, and scavengers. Many work on tea and coffee
estates, and gangs of Badagas can always be seen break-
ing stones on, and repairing the hill roads. Others are,
at the present day, earning good wages in the Cordite
Factory near Wellington. Some of the more prosperous


possess tea and coffee estates of their own. The rising
generation are, to some extent, learning Tamil and
English, in addition to their own language, which is said
to resemble old Canarese. And I have heard a youth-
ful Badaga, tending a flock of sheep, address an errant
member thereof in very fluent Billingsgate. There were,
in 1904-1905, thirty-nine Badaga schools, which were
attended by 1,222 pupils. In 1907, one Badaga had
passed the Matriculation of the Madras University, and
was a clerk in the Sub-judge's Court at Ootacamund.

A newspaper discussion was carried on a few years
ago as to the condition of the Badagas, and whether they
are a down-trodden tribe, bankrupt and impoverished
to such a degree that it is only a short time before
something must be done to ameliorate their condition,
and save them from extermination by inducing them to
emigrate to the Wynad and Vizagapatam. A few have,
in recent years, migrated to the Anaimalai hills, to work
on the planters' estates, which have been opened up
there. One writer stated that "the tiled houses, costing
from Rs. 250 to Rs. 500, certainly point to their pros-
perity. They may frequently borrow from the Labbai
to enable them to build, but, as I do not know of a
single case in which the Labbai has ever seized the
house and sold it, I believe this debt is soon discharged.
The walled-in, terraced fields immediately around their
villages, on which they grow their barley and other
grains requiring rich cultivation, are well worked, and
regularly manured. The coats, good thick blankets,
and gold ear-rings, which most Badagas now possess,
can only, I think, point to their prosperity, while their
constant feasts, and disinclination to work on Sundays,
show that the loss of a few days' pay does not affect
them. On the other hand, a former Native official on


the Nllgiris writes to me that " though the average
Badaga is thrifty and hard-working, there is a tendency
for him to be lazy when he is sure of his meal. When a
person is sick in another village, his relatives make it an
excuse to go and see him, and they have to be fed.
When the first crop is raised, the idler pretends that
' worms ' have crept into the crop, and the gods have to
be propitiated, and there is a feast. Marriage or death,
of course, draws a crowd to be fed or feasted. All this
means extra expenditure, and a considerable drain on the
slender income of the family. The Rowthan (Muham-
madan merchant) from the Tamil country is near at
hand to lend money, as he has carried his bazar to the
very heart of the Badaga villages. First it is a bag of
ragi (food grain), a piece of cloth to throw on the coffin,
or a few rupees worth of rice and curry-stuff doled out
by the all-accommodating Rowthan at a price out of all
proportion to the market rate, and at a rate ranging from
six pies to two annas for the rupee. The ever impecu-
nious Badaga has no means of extricating himself, with
a slender income, which leaves no margin for redeeming
debts. The bond is renewed every quarter or half year,
and the debt grows by leaps and bounds, and consumes
all his earthly goods, including lands. The advent of
lawyers on the hills has made the Badagas a most
litigious people, and they resort to the courts, which
means expenditure of money, and neglect of agriculture."
In the funeral song of the Badagas, which has been
translated by Mr. Cover,* one of the crimes enumerated,
for which atonement must be made, is that of preferring
a complaint to the Sirkar (Government), and one of their
numerous proverbs embodies the same idea. 'If you

Folk-songs of Southern India.


prefer a complaint to a Magistrate, it is as if you had
put poison into your adversary's food." But Mr. Grigg
writes,* " either the terrors of the Sirkar are not what
they were, or this precept is much disregarded, for the
Court-house at Ootacamund is constantly thronged with
Badagas, and they are now very much given to

I gather from the notes, which Bishop Whitehead
has kindly placed at my disposal, that "when the
Badagas wish to take a very solemn oath, they go
to the temple of Mariamma at Sigur, and, after bathing
in the stream and putting on only one cloth, offer
fruits, cocoanuts, etc., and kill a sheep or fowl. They
put the head of the animal on the step of the shrine,
and make a line on the ground just in front of it. The
person who is taking the oath then walks from seven
feet off in seven steps, putting one foot immediately
in front of the other, up to the line, crosses it, goes
inside the shrine, and puts out a lamp that is burning
in front of the image. If the oath is true, the man
will walk without any difficulty straight to the shrine.
But, if the oath is not true, his eyes will be blinded, and
he will not be able to walk straight to the shrine, or see
the lamp. It is a common saying among Badagas, when
a man tells lies, ' Will you go to SigDr, and take an
oath ? ' Oaths are taken in much the same way at the
temple of Mariamma at Ootacamund. When a Hindu
gives evidence in the Court at Ootacamund, he is often
asked by the Judge whether he will take an oath at the
Mariamma temple. If he agrees, he is sent off to the
temple with a Court official. The party for whom he
gives evidence supplies a goat or sheep, which is killed

* Manual of the Nilagiri district.


at the temple, the head and carcase being placed in front
of the image. The witness steps over the carcase, and
this forms the oath. If the evidence is false, it is
believed that some evil will happen to him."

The name Badaga or Vadugan means northerner, and
the Badagas are believed to be descended from Canarese
colonists from the Mysore country, who migrated to the
Nllgiris three centuries ago owing to famine, political
turmoil, or local oppression in their own country. It is
worthy of notice, in this connection, that the head of the
Badagas, like that of the Todas and Kotas, is dolicho-
cephalic, and not of the mesaticephalic or sub-brachy-
cephalic type, which prevails throughout Mysore, as in
other Canarese areas.










I 3 -6






I 4 -2





Of the Mysorean heads, the following are a few
typical examples :


Mandya Bral
Vakkaliga . ,

Concerning the origin of the Badagas, the following
legend is current. Seven brothers and their sisters
were living on the Talamalai hills. A Muhammadan

r *


















i 18-5







ruler attempted to ravish the girl, whom the brother
saved from him by flight. They settled down near the
present village of Bethalhada. After a short stay there,
the brothers separated, and settled in different parts of
the Nllgiris, which they peopled. Concerning the
second brother, Hethappa, who had two daughters, the
story goes that, during his absence on one occasion, two

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