There is a Saying in Tamizh, one of the oldest languages of the world ,along with Sanskrit,
‘Doesn’t matter if I lose one of my eyes, the other should lose both their eyes’
This is what I felt when I searched for information about the antiquity of Tamizh.
One does not get enough information on the Web.
Or in the Public domain in the form of Books , Articles.
As compared the touted , fraudulent love for Tamizh to make a living and vicious hatred for the Brahmins and the North, driven by the lust for power, a
Group in Tamil Nadu has been systematically suppressing a portion of History of the Tamizh which speak about the Vedas and The Purans.
This group,boot-lickers of the British Raj,fueled by the false and dis-proven Theory of Aryan Invasion , mainly promoted by the Justice party,
purported to look after the welfare of the Tamils(interestingly
the Leaders of the Party were not Tamils, but Telugu Theagaraya Chettiar and a Malayali!)
suppressed the truth.
The self-styled rationalist Periyar, EVR, Leader of the Tamils(again self-proclaimed)Karunanidhi and his minions were abetting this fraud.
Their intention was to hide the fact that the Tamils had strong roots with The Sanatana Dharma.
What they forgot(Really?) is that in the process the Richness and the cultural Heritage, even the Date of the Tamil Sangam Literature was made to look recent!
Let me quote.
It is a fact that archaeology in the South has so far unearthed little that can compare to findings in the North in terms of ancientness, massiveness or sophistication�: the emergence of urban civilization in Tamil Nadu is now fixed at the second or third century BC, about two and a half millennia after the appearance of Indus cities. Moreover, we do not have any fully or largely excavated city or even medium-sized town�: Madurai, the ancient capital of the Pandya kingdom, has hardly been explored at all�; Uraiyur, that of the early Cholas, saw a dozen trenches�; Kanchipuram, the Pallavas� capital, had seventeen, and Karur, that of the Cheras, hardly more�; Kaveripattinam, part of the famous ancient city of Puhar (the first setting of the Shilappadikaram epic), saw more widespread excavations, yet limited with regard to the potential the site offers. The same may be said of Arikamedu (just south of Pondicherry), despite excavations by Jouveau-Dubreuil, Wheeler, and several other teams right up to the 1990s.
“We have a peculiar situation too as regards Southern India, and particularly Tamil Nadu. Take any classic account of Indian history and you will see how little space the South gets in comparison with the North. While rightly complaining that �Hitherto most historians of ancient India have written as if the south did not exist,�[ 1]Vincent Smith in his Oxford History of India hardly devotes a few pages to civilization in the South, that too with the usual stereotypes to which I will return shortly. R.�C. Majumdar�s Advanced History of India, or A.�L. Basham�s The Wonder That Was India are hardly better in that respect. The first serious History of South India, that of K.�A. Nilakanta Sastri, appeared only in 1947. Even recent surveys of Indian archaeology generally give the South a rather cursory treatment….
But there is a second reason for this poor awareness�: scholars and politicians drawing inspiration from the Dravidian movement launched by E.�V. Ramaswamy Naicker (�Periyar�) have very rigid ideas about the ancient history of Tamil Nadu. First, despite all evidence to the contrary, they still insist on the Aryan invasion theory in its most violent version, turning most North Indians and upper-caste Indians into descendants of the invading Aryans who overran the indigenous Dravidians, and Sanskrit into a deadly rival of Tamil. Consequently, they assert that Tamil is more ancient than Sanskrit, and civilization in the South older than in the North. Thus recently, Tamil Nadu�s Education minister decried in the State Assembly those who go �to the extent of saying that Dravidian civilization is part of Hinduism� and declared, �The Dravidian civilization is older than the Aryan.� It is not uncommon to hear even good Tamil scholars utter such claims..
- Tolkappiyam is placed at two extremities – 1000 BCE and 7th to 9th centuries CE.
- The existence of “Tamil Sangams” based on the internal evidences of the literature and “Iraiyanar Agapporul” is accepted by one group of scholars and denied by the other.
- Megalithic culture related to Tamil culture – According to Asko Parpola the Dravidian languages came to India from the west through Iran about 700 BCE with the carriers of the Megalithic culture. He repeats that “one of the most widely supported hypotheses” was the one that was proposed in 1953 by Christoph von Furer-Haimendrof3
- Such Megalithic culture distributed all over South India including Tamilnadu and which persisted well into the first centuries of the Christian era.
- The last phase of the Megalithic culture (c.300-100 BCE) does overlap the period of Old Tamil Culture (c.100 BCE – 600 CE), which in its militaristic idealization of warfare (including such elements as the horse and iron weapons) closely resembles the martial character of the Megalithic culture (in which weapons were regular grave goods).
- Megalithic invasion of Tamizhagam – Asko Parpola4 also talks about a “Megalithic invasion” of Tamizhagam. To bring the “invading Dravidians” from Iran like “Aryans”, he proposes another hypothesis that the Dravidians could not have arrived in India as late as the Megalithic culture is clear from the fact that there is evidence in the Vedic texts for the presence of Dravidian languages in the Punjab already in the second millennium BCE.
- Thus, the Tamil language could have developed only after 500-300 BCE, and could have been written down after 300 BCE, so that the literature evolved had been upto 1st century to 7tth cent.CE.
Therefore, the dating of Sangam literature should be decisive one in connecting it with Mahabharat incidences. The extensive usage of Mahabharat incidences as simile, metaphor and comparison in the literature clearly proves that it has reached South India definitely before or during 500-300 BCE. Otherwise, the Sangam Poets could not have adopted to use in such a manner…