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  • Writer's pictureAARDE

ஊரும் பேரும் Toponymy

Coromandel Coast has a unique method of naming a place or neighbourhood. Similar to the culture prevalent in other ancient settlements, Dravidian language follows x+y to identify or name a neighbourhood. With one word we would be able to understand geography, geology, landscape, and form of the place. Similarly, any new neighbourhood created around a traditional settlement would have Puram or Nagar as suffix to its name. However, such practice of naming a place in the expansion of our city is slowly vanishing. Ultimately, will remove the traditional knowledge, vernacular-practices, and our ecology. The association of ecology, name and language is very important for sustainable future.

For example,

The traditional settlement Nungambakkam (Chennai) is Nungai + Pakkam, which points us to a Tree Species + Lake Fishermen living around a large water body. Surrounding new settlement are called LaxmiPuram, MahalingaPuram, etc. Unfortunately, Nungambakkam has lost its Chennai city's largest water body and the species of tree called as Nungai.

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