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(drəvĭd`ēəns), name sometimes given to the peoples of S and central India and N Sri Lanka who speak Dravidian languagesDravidian languages
, family of about 23 languages that appears to be unrelated to any other known language family. The Dravidian languages are spoken by more than 200 million people, living chiefly in S and central India and N Sri Lanka.
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. They are so called for purely linguistic reasons; the peoples are of varying racial types. It is thought that Dravidian-speaking peoples may have been spread throughout the Indian subcontinent before the invasions of the AryansAryan
, [Sanskrit,=noble], term formerly used to designate the Indo-European race or language family or its Indo-Iranian subgroup. Originally a group of nomadic tribes, the Aryans were part of a great migratory movement that spread in successive waves from S Russia and Turkistan
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peoples inhabiting for the most part southern India and speaking Dravidian languages. The Dravidian peoples include the Telugu, or Andhra (44 million, 1967 estimate), the Tamils (40 million, some of whom also live on Ceylon and in Malaysia, Burma, and other countries of Southeast Asia), the Malayalam (19.5 million), the Kanarese, or Kannada (21 million), the Tulu (about 1 million), and a number of minority groups which have to a large extent preserved their tribal structure and which live mainly in the mountain and forest regions, such as the Toda, Kota, Kurumba, and Badaga. Several Dravidian peoples live in central India: the Oraons, or Kurukhs (1.3 million), and the Kandhs and Gonds (together about 3 million). The Brahui (0.6 million), who live in Pakistan and the neighboring regions of Afghanistan, also speak a Dravidian language. The religion of most Dravidians is Hinduism, although some are Christians and Muslims; many elements of tribal religions have been preserved in the mountain and forest regions. The Dravidians are believed to have constituted the ancient (pre-Aryan) population of India. According to many scholars, the Harappa civilization was created by the ancestors of the Dravidians between 3000 and 2000 B.C. As early as the first millennium B.C. the Dravidians had their own states in southern India (Andhras, Pandya, Chola, and Chera). In the course of their development the Dravidians created a highly advanced culture (literature, art, theater). In the 17th and 18th centuries the British colonialists seized the areas settled by the Dravidians and began to repartition their lands, destroying the ethnic territory of the Dravidian peoples. During the struggle for national self-determination the Dravidians, like other major Indian peoples, demanded that states be formed out of their ethnic territory. The borders of these states were finally established in 1956: the Tamils live primarily in the state of Tamil Nadu (Madras), the Teluga in the state of Andhra Pradesh, the Kanarese in the state of Mysore, and the Malayalams in the state of Kerala.


Narody Iuzhnoi Azii. Moscow, 1963. (Bibliography, pages 893-94.)


References in periodicals archive ?
The story goes back to the time when the Dravidians ruled over the Indian subcontinent and the Aryans, the nomads from the west, were in search of Saptsindhu, the fertile land they had always heard about.
While the Dravidian parties opposed Hindi, he says, they had a logical language policy nevertheless with the constant emphasis on learning English, ensuring that Tamils were not left behind in the development story.
The famed Chettinadu Home, Chettinadu Palace and the many temples of the place, proud symbols of Dravidian architecture promises to become a visual treat for tourists in the two days of their stay in the heritage town.
There are patterned vowel losses in Elamitic while Dravidian stem vowels tend to be very stable.
The language is now considered the parent language of 7,000 Dravidian languages spoken in the Deccan in India.
Elena Bashir, while reading his paper on Brahui language, said that Brahui language has strong connections with other Dravidian languages.
That leaves the BJP with possible support from one of the two Tamil Nadu-based Dravidian parties, the AIADMK and the DMK besides Naveen Patnaik's Biju Janata Dal and Shiv Sena despite its preference for Sushma Swaraj as PM.
The written history of India begins after 1400 BCE, with the arrival of those Aryans who came to dominate the Dravidian population.
The ethno-linguistic composition of the population of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, Maldives, and Sri Lanka mostly falls within two large groups, Dravidian and Indo-Aryan.
we've got Dravidian Dream; her jockey's wearing the brown jersey we've got Mayan Mystery in lane #3; her jockey is in the red jersey in lane # 4, Golden Son is in the yellow jersey and in lane # 5 .
The emergence of Dravidian, regional politics in the south saw his elevation as a warrior against the racial Aryan conquerors.
The Balaji Temple was built in the traditional Indian Dravidian style and was opened as a place of worship in 1999, when it was the largest of its kind in Europe.