[lit-ideas] The Oxford Book of Tamil Verse

  • From: Jlsperanza@xxxxxxx
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 25 Feb 2009 14:59:49 EST


I won't be able to finish the  review of the book of Tamil verse you sent me 
to review for the Memphis  Metaphysical Ministry. It's not _bilingual_!

You write in the  'Introduction':

There are some unique  rhyming schemes in 
Tamil, an  understanding of which is a must
to appreciate  the eroticism of these verses.

Specifically, the rhyme called 'edukai' 
rhymes on the beginning of a subsequent line of  
a poem (See pp. 78-79; also 57-9; 178-90,  ss)

The effect of 'edukai',  though a little strange 
at first,  rapidly becomes pleasant to the reader,  
and to the Tamil it is as   enjoyable as the end rhyme.

I want to say, "if not more". But  don't that be a slight rude for the 

You go  on:

The other rhyme and  related patterns 
are called  'monai' (see pp. 78-90, 45-9, ss, pp.  789-65)

as in  

monai edukai edukai monai monai       b
edukai monai [caesura]  edukai            a

'todai' (pp. 72-0, 127-83, ff)  

as in B78-6 [Cyril  transcript]

monai edukai todai irattai        a
kilavi [caesura] kilavi          b


'irattai kilavi' (pp. 763-0  65-0,  87-ff

-- the locus classicus being B870c -- dial.  --:

edukai monai irattai todai        b
todai kilavi  irattai                    b

I don't think it's wise for me to comment on your expansion on the  grammars, 
nor do I think it's necessary that you include grammatical examples on  your 
talk on Thursday. Keep well,



"Some  classical Tamil poetry forms, such as Venpa, have rigid grammars for 
rhyme to  the point that they could be expressed as a context-free grammar" --  

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