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(mä'ləyä`ləm), Dravidian language of India. See 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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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



the language of the Malayalis, spoken in Kerala in southwestern India by more than 20 million people (1970, estimate). Malayalam belongs to the southern group of Dravidian languages and is closely related to Tamil. It lacks the category of gender and does not distinguish the categories of person and number in the finite (personal) forms of the verb. A writing system dates from the late ninth and early tenth centuries. The first important work is the poem Ramacaritam (Biography of Rama, 13th century), and the first Malayalam grammar is the Sanskrit treatise Lilatilakam (14th century). There were two literary dialects in early classical Malayalam: the Sanskritized Manipravalam and the Tamilized Misra-bhasa. In the 16th century the differences between the two dialects disappeared and a uniform literary language developed in the works of T. Ezuttacchan. Modern spoken Malayalam, comprising 12 regional dialects and a number of caste dialects, differs from the literary language.


Malaialam-russkii slovar’: Sprilozheniem kratkogo ocherka grammatiki iazyka malaialam. Moscow, 1971.
Sekhar, A. C. Evolution of Malayalam. Poona, 1953.
Andrewskutty, A. P. Intensive Course of Malayalam. Trivandrum, 1972.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Kumar explained that they focus on a balanced mix of Malayalam programs in which over fifty percent will be Gulf based and Gulf related Malayalam programs created in UAE itself.
Other Malayalam actors Mammootty, Manju Warrier, and Nivin Pauly sent special video messages.
Dileep has been accused of hatching a plot with prime accused Pulsar Suni and his associates for abducting and assaulting the Malayalam actress in a moving car.
It was in 2013 that Madhyamam organised a programme `My Own Malayalam' in Dubai giving non-resident Keralites an opportunity to relish the flavour of their mother tongue.
His first book "kshobhikkunnavarude suvisesham" (Gospel of the Angry) opened a new vista in Malayalam literary criticism.
Sreenvisan, who was last seen in the Malayalam blockbuster 'Njan Prakashan', starring Fahadh Faasil, is under close observation.
Watch Drishyam in Malayalam if you have not seen the lousy Hindi remake.
Kochi (Kerala) [India], May 21 ( ANI ): The Ernakulam Principal Sessions Court has adjourned the hearing of the abduction and assault case of a Malayalam actress in Kochi to May 26.
Mahabharata will be made in three languages including Malayalam, English and Hindi and dubbed in most Indian languages.
Varma, who has penned scores of quality songs for the Malayalam film industry and several poems for publications has come to Doha on an invitation from Changanassery NSS College Alumni Association (CHANSS-Qatar), which is staging a four-hour music concert in honour of his father and legendary Malayalam poet Late Vayalar Rama Varma at Birla Public School.
The second features Christian devotional song in Malayalam, film song in Malayalam, vocal Carnatic music, instrumental music, bharathanatyam, folk dance, cinematic dance, mono act and fancy dress.