Page:Origin and spread of the Tamils.djvu/26

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AUTHORS OF EARLY TAMIL CULTURE 15 cultivated languages only a thousand years ago, when the influence of Sanskrit language had reached its high water mark in the Peninsula. So the terin Dravidian, we can definitely say, originally stood for the Tamil language and its descendants. In primitive times when the ebb and flow of civilization was low, peoples lived in tribes, and in particular areas. The peculiar circumstances in which numbers of these different tribes dwelt profoundly influenced their moral, mental and physical development. Under the stress of the locality in which they resided, they imbibed certain behaviour, certain modes of food, drink and dress. They married among themselves. Thus a common outlook in life and mental equipment led among themselves to a strong organization with one among themselves as their leader. A little reflection and a knowledge of ancient Indian History, especially South Indian history, will show that this tribal kinship led to group life, group sentiment and group impulses in our country. It may be tribal groups, caste groups or professional groups. But what is significant is that group organization was there and helped both State and Society to advance on democratic lines. So the peoples who lived in Dravida speaking country developed a complex but homogenous culture which we broadly call today South Indian culture, and in a restricted sense, Tamil culture. Particular modes of life lived by a people for ages together in a particular locality produce specialized forms of human types, and it is therefore unscientific