Monday, July 31, 2006

The original father of Dravidian speakers-II

Though I have speculated that aya(looks like most of these words had unstressed original forms) could be the original father, it is difficult to overlook apa. Unfortunately apa is the universal father
accroding to this database.

Borean (approx.) : HVPV
Meaning :
Eurasiatic :
Afroasiatic :
Sino-Caucasian :
Austric :
PAA *bʔa / *ba, Tai *bo, PAN *aba 'father'
Amerind (misc.) :
*ipa 'man' (R 456)
African (misc.) :
Bantu *-bààbá 'father'.
Reference : ND 5; GE 28 *papa (+ NS).

Now let us consider 'aya'
Proto-Dravidian : *ája-
Meaning :
an elder relative (father's brother; grandfather; father)
Proto-South Dravidian:
Proto-Telugu :
Proto-Kolami-Gadba :
Proto-Gondi-Kui :

"aya" could be observed in only Dravidian languages.

Let us consider 'ata'
Borean (approx.) : HVTV
Meaning : elder male relative, father
Eurasiatic :
*ʔVṭV (cf. also *tajV)
Afroasiatic :
*tVy- (?) (cf. also *ʔad- ˜ *daʔ- )
Sino-Caucasian :
NC *dājV
Austric :
Amerind (misc.) :
? *taq 'maternal uncle' (R 804) [+ A]
African (misc.) : Bantu *-tààtá 'father'.

Just like apa, ata is also universal father.

Let us consider 'aja' or 'aca' or 'azz'
Eurasiatic: *ʔacwV
father, ancestor
*äćä (cf. also *ićä; *iśV)
ND 797 *Hać̣/c̣^[i] 'father, ancestor'. Cf. also Ur. *ćečä 'uncle' - probably just reduplicated, but Dolg. ND 2145 *seǯA compares it with Kartv. *śiʒ́e- 'son-in-law' (+ some ECush.).

More Eastern but conspicuously absent from Indo-European. However, the linguists there believe this could not possibly be an equivalent of 'arya'.
Courtesy : Starling database.

It should be noted here that only Hindu malayalees use(South of Kasaragod) 'aca' for father at present. In Karnataka, aja is grandfather. As I have mentioned previously both apa and tand (formal word for father) have become derogatory in Kerala. Curiously, grandfather in Malayalam is appoppa( apa's apa) and father's sister is appacci(apa's woman) though common sense tells us that those should be accocca or acchacci. Probably, this tells us the vulgarization of apa that part of Hindu society could be quite new and this could be further seen in the fact that Christians and Malayalee Hindus in North(mostly living amongs Tulu/Kannada speakers) still call their fathers apa.

Again, I speculated that many of the relationship terms show incestuous past. But this does not look like the case. In my opinion, ammavan (amma + avan) in Malayalam is amma's man probably indicating the old brother-sister marital relationships. But more rational explanation could be that masculine and feminine gender "in relative of" relationships represent blood relationships and not marital relationships.
amma -> ammavan (amma's brother avan -> he -> man)
apa -> appacci ( appa's sister acci -> woman, previously honorific "lady" also, similar is the case with anna and anni where 'anni' was lady, a honorific)
ata -> atte ( ata -> father ; atte -> father's sister)
Of course, there are too many exceptions to make this a rule.

We can make two interesting observations in the above cases;
1. grandfather in Malayalam is appoppa (apa's apa)
2. amma's brother in Malayalam is ammavan but in Kannada maava; the initial 'a' is lost.

Based on these we can construct another lost father in non-Tamil, Malayalam Dravidian languages and that is 'ata'.

Starling database considers 'tata' is an independet word for grandfather or father. I consider grandfather is primary and father is secondary here.

If the present day Malayalam appoppa show the oldest way of calling ones grandfather; then we can be sure that;
ata father gave rise to atata which became tata( ammavan -> maava) and this could be found among most of the other Dravidian languages too.

So we have a universal father apa -> widely used.
Another universal father ata -> almost extinct(except for Tamil muslim communities, as a reader commented)
Eastern father aca -> Only Malayalees
Exclusive Dravidian father aya -> almost extinct (except for few rural communities in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu).

I will stop it here since I have confused myself enough.

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