Page:Origin and spread of the Tamils.djvu/97

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86 ORIGIN AND SPREAD OF THE TAMILS Professor Kern bas referred, to an interesting paper on certain funeral ceremonies of the Merga Symbiring (Black Tribe), one of the five tribes of the Karo-Bataks round Lake Tobo in the west. The sub-divisions of the Symbiring tribe are Coliya, Pandiya, Meliyala, Depari and Pelavi (Melavi, i.e. Malay ?). The first three names are well-known ethnic ones in South india and clearly point to the Dravidian origin of the tribe in question. The name Meliyala is evidently identical with Malayalam; and Kern remarks that "it would be extremely interesting if Pelavi could be identified with the name Pallava." The form of the lettering of the Koetei in Borneo records bears a certain resemblance to that of the cave inscriptions of Mahendravarman Pallava found at Mahendravādi and at Dalavanur. "The cult of an Agastya migration from the north to the extreme south of India and across the Bay of Bengal to the Malayan Archipelago has been gaining increasing support. According to the Vāy! Puraja (See Dikshitar, Some Aspects of Vayu Purana, Sec. VII), Agastya paid visits to Barhiņadvīga (perhaps Borneo), Kusadvipa, Varāhadvipa, S'ānkhyadvīpa, and Malayadvīpa as well as to Java; an Agastya is said to have lived on a hill called Mahāmalayaparyata in Malayadvipa, as distinct from the Malaya-parvata of South India. An important mountain in Sumatra is still known as Malayu. It is argued that the legend of Agastya's visit to the Archipelago was perhaps a relic of the earliest wave of Brahmanical culture from South India that preceded and prepared the ground for the later Indian cultural migration. We have no evidence of a Siva temple supposed to have been built by Agastya in Java, and of the descendants of the Agastya-gotra a clan of South India which had a settlement of their own in