Page:Origin and spread of the Tamils.djvu/76

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NOTES TO LECTURE I 65 He sought to explain that the Old Stone Age in South India ended very gradually and shaded off very imperceptibly into the neolithic culture and that, throughout South India, there was no geological or other indication of catastrophic phenomena when the Palaeolithic Age ended and the next Age began. "The substitution of trap-rock for quartzite, the acquisition of the skill to polish the tools made with trap-rock till they became extra-ordinarily smooth to the touch, the domestication of the wild dog, and the cultivation of the wild rice led to the peaceful evolution of the epoch of new stone tools from that of the older rough implements, the settled life of the neolithians from the nomad life of the palaeolithians," The learned writer further holds that dialects of the same family of languages were spoken throughout India, except in the Vindhyan regions, in the Neolithic Age; and that the neolithians of North India spoke languages of their own which were structurally allied to the so-called Dravidian family of languages and not to Sanskrit or Prakrit and which might have been evolved from the holophrastic dialects of very primitive peoples. In South India, as in China, no brief Copper Age or long Bronze Age intervened between the Neolithic Age and the Iron Age.' (Journal of the Bihar and Orissa Research Society, Vol. XXIV, pp. 39-40). "Thus, according to this view, the Dravidian race was indigenous to the country, and the Tamil and other allied peoples were indigenous; and their languages were evolved where they are now spoken. "A careful study of South Indian pre-historic antiquities in situ cannot lead to any other conclusion than that the passage of culture from stage to stage in ancient times was not a catastrophic change such as indicates the struggle of alien intruders with the pre-existing population, but a peaceful course of evolution. An inspection